The Trial of Dan White: Trial Testimony of Raymond Shine (friend of White's)
Source: The Trial of Dan White by Kenneth W. Salter (1991)


Q I think I asked you something to the effect of: "What did Dan White tell you in that respect, in regards to carrying a weapon?"
A He stated that he occasionally carried the gun to some of his Board meetings at City Hall. . . .He explained-he stated that certain radical groups had threatened him, and he felt threatened in their presence, in his committee meetings, and that the degree of potential for harm to him was so great that he carried the weapon as protection to himself. He was very specific, and he mentioned one group in particular.
Q And what group was that?
A The White Panther Party.
Q And that is a local group here in San Francisco?
A Yes.  Apparently they had been petitioning his committee to close off some streets, and from what I remembered, he refused the petition, or something, and they threatened him, or something like that. He was aware of their stand on the Second Amendment to the Constitution regarding their right to bear arms. He felt that potential was there for them, to come to him, in the company of his meetings, being armed,
Q The White Panthers had a shoot-out with the police, had they not?
A Yes, they had. ...
Q Did you ever see him be particularly erratic or impulsive, anything such as that?
A Yes, I did.
Q Describe for me the circumstances of that.
A Dan had a habit, or I guess not a habit, that is the wrong word, but he would radically change his life style from a Spartan existence to a lavish existence, and then back from a lavish existence to a Spartan existence, and this is over a series of years. Now, to be specific, Dan was living on a boat, small sailboat in Sausalito when he was a fireman. At the time he had no car, and was living on the boat, which was only a twenty-foot boat, and you couldn't stand up inside the thing, and he had a sleeping bag inside, and a bare light bulb he read by, and that was the extent of his possessions.  His clothing, apparently, he kept at the firehouse, and he rode his bicycle over the bridge to the firehouse, when he had to work. I also had a boat, and one day I stopped at Dan's boat, to say hello. I was off on a sailing trip with some friends, and that was on a Monday. The following Friday, which is five days later, I was at my apart­ment in San Francisco, and he knocked on the door, and I went to the door, and here is Dan. Dan wants me to come down to the street and see a brand-new Porsche that he just bought, a $15,000 car he purchased, and he said, "Come on, take a ride, jump in the car, and ride around the block."  He said, "I moved out to Lake Merced, have a new apartment, bought all new furniture,” and he went on and on. It was such a radical change. I just couldn't-in a five-day time span-he seemed happy on the boat on Monday, content with his life, was saving his money for a trip around the world, and five days later here he is, he has gone out and. spent $15,000 on toys.
Q You had visited him on this boat, went sailing with him one time or another?
A Oh, yes, I went sailing many times, and I taught him to sail.
Q Did you ever see him under a stressful situation while you were sailing?
A Yes, I have.
Q What was that situation?
A One time, we were out about two or three miles west of the Golden Gate Bridge, in the area of the Potato Patch, which is notoriously rough, and through a fault of my own, my own stupidity, I was knocked overboard, and luckily, the main sheet lines for the mainsail wrapped around my wrist. The boat was planing through the water, and Dan reached way over the back of the boat and pulled me in, held on to me until the boat came to a luff position, came up to the wind, and stopped. I was able to climb, and had Dan not done that, I am sure that a few seconds later I would have slipped into the water, and without any life preserver, and considering the rough water, and considering the fact that at the time I was the only experienced sailor on the boat, I don't think I would have been able to reach the boat. I guess what I am trying to say is that he saved my life.
Q Mr. Shine, knowing Dan White as you have through the years, and knowing that he shot and killed George Moscone and Harvey Milk, let me ask you: Was there anything in his background ever that indicated he was capable of that type of act?
A No, nothing. I was really shocked and surprised.
Q . . .I think that you told us that he had indicated to you he carried a gun occasionally, and there was some mention that you made about some reference made by him to the Second Amendment. Did he discuss the Second Amendment of the Federal Constitution with you often?
A No, I threw that in as to the Second Amendment. I know the Second Amendment covers the right to bear arms, and that was my comment.
Q Did he have any strong feelings which he expressed to you about the right of people to carry arms?
A No, he didn't.
Q In connection with that, unfortunate accident, on the boat, in the Potato Patch area outside of the Gate, you truly regard yourself as grateful, no doubt, that he saved your life?
A That is correct.       
Q Could I say; Officer Shine, that given your feelings of close friendship to Daniel White, that you would like to see Daniel White dealt with at least less harshly as possible in connection with these proceedings?