Von Junzt (vonjunzt) wrote in malcolm_x_4evr,
Von Junzt
vonjunzt
malcolm_x_4evr

Malcolm X Killer Freed

And, incidentally, admits his guilt and claims the other two men convicted were innocent.

Malcolm X killer freed after 44 years
By Wayne Drash, CNN
April 27, 2010 1:56 p.m. EDT

CNN) -- Thomas Hagan, the only man who admitted his role in the 1965 assassination of iconic black leader Malcolm X, was paroled Tuesday.

[ . . . ]

Hagan, 69, walked out of the minimum-security Lincoln Correctional Facility at 11 a.m. The facility is located at the intersection of West 110th Street and Malcolm X Boulevard.

[ . . . ]

Twenty-two and on a deadly mission

Hagan, then known by the name Talmadge X Hayer, was 22 and a radical member of the Nation of Islam the day he entered the ballroom armed and ready to kill. His allegiance was to the Nation's founder, and he was outraged Malcolm X had broken from its ranks.

After the shooting, Hagan tried to flee the scene but he was shot in the leg. He was beaten by the crowd before being arrested outside.

Thomas Hagan is pictured here in a mugshot from 2008.Last month, he told the parole board he felt the urge to kill Malcolm X because of his inflammatory comments about the Nation's founder.

"It stemmed from a break off and confusion in the leadership," Hagan said. "Malcolm X broke with the Nation of Islam, separated from the Nation of Islam, and in doing so there was controversy as to some of the statements he was making about the leader."

He added, "History has revealed a lot of what Malcolm X was saying was true."

Two other men, Muhammad Abdul Aziz and Kahlil Islam, were also found guilty of murder in 1966 and received 20 years to life. Both proclaimed their innocence. Hagan, who eventually admitted his part in the murder, testified at trial and subsequent parole hearings that both men were innocent. Aziz was paroled in 1985; Islam was freed in 1987.

At last month's parole hearing, Hagan again maintained that Aziz and Islam were not the other assassins. He said it was two other men who helped plot, plan and participate in the killing.

Did they receive orders from the Nation to carry out the killing?

"I can't say that anyone in the Nation of Islam gave us the idea or instructed us to do it. We did this ourselves for the most part, yes," Hagan told the parole board.

Hagan said he received a master's degree in sociology while incarcerated and that helped him deal with his actions from 45 years ago.

"I understand a lot better the dynamics of movements and what can happen inside movements and conflicts that can come up, but I have deep regrets about my participation in that."

He added, "Unfortunately, I didn't have an in-depth understanding of what was really going on myself to let myself be involved in anything like that. ... I can't really describe my remiss and my remorse for my actions -- basically a very young man, a very uneducated man. "

He is still a Muslim but no longer a member of the Nation of Islam. He volunteers at a mosque to help young men. He told the parole board he hopes to become a qualified substance abuse counselor.

His primary mission is to help his four children, ages 21, 17, 14 and 10. He has two other grown children.

"My focus is to maintain my family and to try to make things a little better for them. It's upward mobility, and to encourage my children to complete their education because it's a must."
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