Testimony of Corporal R. C. Tweedy in the Leonard Peltier Trial
(April 16, 1977)

MR. CROOKS:  If it please the Court, the United States would call Mr. Chuck Tweedy.
being first duly sworn, testified as follows:

Q  Corporal Tweedy, would you give your full name again for record, please.
A  Ralph Charles Tweedy.
Q  And where do you live, Mr. Tweedy?
A  In the city of Edmonton, the province of Alberta, Canada.
Q  And what is your employment, sir?
A  I'm a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Q  How long have you been a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police?
A  Fourteen years, sir.
Q  And how long have you been stationed in the Edmonton, Alberta area?
A  In the area -- most of my service in Edmonton. It's about six years, sir.
Q  All right. Calling your attention back to the first part of February, 1976. Did you have occasion to participate in the arrest of an individual who was involved in this case that we're {3404} trying here?
A  Yes, I did, sir.
Q  And what was the individual's name?
A  Leonard Peltier.
Q  And do you see that individual in the courtroom today?
A  Yes, I do, sir.
Q  And where is he seated?
A  He's seated at the end of the court table.
MR. TAIKEFF:  Identification is conceded, Your Honor.
THE COURT:  Very well.
Q  (By Mr. Crooks) All right Corporal Tweedy, during the course of the arrest of Mr. Peltier were you present with the arresting group of officers at the camp?
A  Yes, I was, sir.
Q  And did you accompany Mr. Peltier at a later time in connection with taking him into Canadian custody?
A  I did, sir, the following day.
Q  And would you describe the circumstances under which you were assigned with or he was assigned to your custody the following day.
A  Yes. Constable Parlane and myself escorted Mr. Peltier from the town of Hinton to the city of Edmonton the following day after the arrest.
Constable Parlane drove the vehicle. It was an ordinal unmarked police car. I rode in the back seat with the prisoner.
Q  All right. During the course of the trip did you have occasion to ask Mr. Peltier any questions?
A  Yes, I did, sir.
Q  And prior to asking him questions what procedures if any did you follow?
A  Well, when I first got into the police car with Mr. Peltier I gave him the secondary police warning which is customary under these circumstances.
Q  And without going into it in detail would be the same warning that's been referred to earlier by other witnesses as basically warning that he has the right to remain silent and so forth?
A  That is correct, sir.
Q  All right. During the course of the trip to Edmonton did you ask him questions concerning the matter that he was being arrested for, or wanted for by the United States Government?
A  I did, sir.
Q  And what specifically did you ask him concerning the murders that he was wanted for?
A  I asked Mr. Peltier if he would tell me about the two killings that he was allegedly involved with
Q  And what response if any did he give?
A  Mr. Peltier advised me that the two FBI agents were shot when they came to a house to serve a warrant on him.
Q  On him?
A  That is correct, sir.
Q  All right. Did you then ask him what the warrant had been for, or what he understood the warrant had been for?
MR. TAIKEFF:  Objection.
THE COURT:  Are you objecting to it on what basis?
MR. TAIKEFF:  I would like to come to the sidebar, Your Honor.
THE COURT:  You may.
(Whereupon, the following proceedings were had at the bench:)
MR. TAIKEFF:  Your Honor, the reason I said objection was in order to get at the sidebar so that I could make sure that Mr. Crooks understands there this is some information contained within the purported statement which is not to be admitted.
MR. CROOKS:  Why don't you specifically state it. I think I see what your problem is.
MR. TAIKEFF:  According to the --
MR. CROOKS:  Which part would you like deleted, or what are you talking about specifically?
MR. TAIKEFF:  I'm talking about words "of an off-duty cop".
MR. CROOKS:  All right.
MR. TAIKEFF:  And then any further reference.
MR. CROOKS:  All right. I will word the question and {3407} attempt as best I can, if counsel will allow me a leading question, so that he does not give the identity or status of the individual involved. But I think --
MR. TAIKEFF:  I think you do it on your own peril. I'm not going to take the responsibility. That's why I came up here and forewarned you about that.
THE COURT:  I assume this relates to the Wisconsin incident?
MR. TAIKEFF:  That's correct. Perhaps Your Honor would like to see the purported quote
MR. CROOKS:  Well, my position is, I will attempt to avoid getting into that. I don't think there's anything improper if it comes out because that was the statement. But I will attempt to --
MR. TAIKEFF:  There's a stipulation there.
THE COURT:  It seems to me that perhaps the way to resolve this matter is to ask the witness to step down and confer with him at the counsel table.
MR. TAIKEFF:  May I make an alternate suggestion along the lines of Mr. Crooks' earlier suggestion. Suppose you ask him a leading question and ask him whether or not he indicated to you that this was a charge of attempted murder in Milwaukee, and just take a yes or no from him.
MR. CROOKS:  Yes. If counsel is willing to do that, I will do it that way.
(Whereupon, the following proceedings were had in the courtroom in the hearing and presence of the jury:)
MR. TAIKEFF:  I'll withdraw the objection, Your Honor.
THE COURT:  Very well
Q  (By Mr. Crooks) All right. With counsel's permission I will ask the question as a leading question and I would ask him to answer simply yes or no. Did you then, well, I believe you already stated that you then asked him what the warrant was for and my next question, did he state words in substance that he had been charged with attempted murder in Milwaukee?
A  Yes, he did, sir.
MR. CROOKS:  All the questions I have, Your Honor.
MR. TAIKEFF:  May I inquire, Your Honor?
THE COURT:  You may.
MR. TAIKEFF:  Your Honor, I'm going to remain seated if Your Honor' doesn't mind.
THE COURT:  That is permissible
MR. TAIKEFF:  I hadn't done it before so I just wanted to indicate the change.
Q  Do you recall of your own independent recollection the conversation or conversations you had with Mr. Peltier on February 6th and February 7th, 1976?
A  I had very little on February the 6th. On the 7th I recall parts of the conversation, sir.
Q  Did you have any conversation on the 6th?
A  Not that I can recall, sir.
Q  Mr. Peltier say anything about not being turned over to the FBI?
A  He made those comments, but not to me, sir.
Q  But you overheard them?
A  Yes, I did.
Q  What did he say in that regard?
A  He said just that, not, that he would -- I don't recall the words he used, sir. He asked not to be turned over to the U.S authorities.
Q  Did you write a report in connection with your conversation or conversations with him?
A  Yes, I did, sir
Q  And as far as you know was that report accurate?
A  Yes, it was, sir.
Q  And was it written shortly after February 6th or February 7th?
A  It was.
Q  Did you write in your report that Peltier asked not to be turned over to the FBI?
A  I believe I did, sir.
Q  Is it fair then to assume that if you wrote that in your report that he said that, that you just didn't write it?
A  No, he said that, sir.
Q  Now, prior to the time that you found yourself in Mr. Peltier's presence had you had any contact with any United States official, whether from the FBI or otherwise concerning Mr. Peltier?
A  No, sir.
Q  Had you had any conversation with anyone concerning the charges against Mr. Peltier?
A  I dolt understand the question, sir.
Q  Well, you knew you were going out to arrest somebody?
A  Yes.
Q  Who was wanted by the United States authorities; is that correct?
A  That's correct, sir.
Q  Did you have any specific details about that case?
A  No, sir.
Q  You only knew that he was wanted?
A  Wanted for the murder of two FBI agents was the information I had, sir
Q  Is that all?
A  That's all I can recall at this time, sir. I believe it is.
Q  From whom did you learn that, that little bit which you say you knew?
A  That would have been a verbal communication from the member {3411} of our force who detailed for us to go out to this location.
Q  Now, as of this time, given the present state of your memory, have you told us all that you believe you knew about the purported details of Mr. Peltier's case?
A  I would have to review my notes, sir, to -- that's all I can recall at this time without reviewing my report.
Q  On February 7, 1976 did you ask Mr. Peltier whether he shot the two FBI agents?
MR. CROOKS:  Your Honor, before this question is asked may we approach the bench? I have something I wish to make a record on.
(Whereupon, the following proceedings were had at the bench:)
MR. CROOKS:  Well, at the bench, Your Honor, first of all this is self-serving. But I'm not sure I'm really objecting to it. But I do object to counsel going into this because the part of the statement which counsel is going to elicit is basically going to be he stated he did not. But that was not all of the conversation. The conversation was followed by a further question, "Well, were you part of a conspiracy"?
MR. TAIKEFF:  Mr. Crooks, I interrupt you only to assure you I would cover both parts. So that wouldn't --
MR. CROOKS:  This is why, if counsel will elicit all of it, then I have no objection.
MR. TAIKEFF:  I will.
MR. CROOKS:  Because I did not feel I could go into all of this because of constitutional problems of talking about silence. But I don't want half the conversation to come in.
If counsel will represent to me that he will --
MR. TAIKEFF:  Not only that, I will show you my own notations here that I distinctly intended to bring out both parts.
MR. CROOKS:  Well, including the shrug of noncommittal
MR. TAIKEFF:  I will do so.
MR. CROOKS:  If counsel will do that I will have no objection. But I did not want us to get into a constitutional problem where in effect we're having to bring out what could then be construed to be a comment on silence. And I do not feel it's fair to bring out one part of the conversation without the other because it was all in context. If counsel will go into the whole thing we will have no objection.
MR. TAIKEFF:  I intended to all the time, Your Honor.
THE COURT:  Very well.
(Whereupon, the following proceedings were had in the courtroom in the hearing and presence of the jury:)
Q  (By Mr Taikeff) I believe, Corporal Tweedy, that the question I put to you before we just went to the sidebar was:  Whether or not you asked Mr. Peltier if in fact he had shot the {3413} agents. Did you ask him that question?
A  I did, sir.
Q  And did he answer you?
A  Yes, he did.
Q  And what did he say?
A  He said, "No, but I know who did."
Q  And did you then ask him a further question?
A  I did, sir.
Q  And did you ask him whether he was part of the conspiracy?
A  Yes, I did.
Q  To kill these men.
And did he make arrangements for it, I assume the killing, to happen so he could get away? Did you ask him those two questions or that one question in two parts?
A  Yes, I did, sir.
Q  And did he give you any answer?
A  No, he did not.
Q  What did he do?
A  He shrugged his shoulders.
Q  Now, sir, tell us what was the basis of asking him whether he was involved in a conspiracy if in fact you had no other information about this case before you confronted him on February 6th?
A  Well, he had told me already, sir, that he had wanted or had felt that his arrest was imminent.
Q  You didn't record that in your report, did you? Yes or no?
A  No, sir.
Q  Go on.
A  And I felt if he had answered me in the negative respecting the shooting, it's then that this may have been the case in {3415} order to allow him to leave without being arrested, that is why I asked that question.
Q  Well, you know that the word conspiracy implies criminal conduct by two or more people to give the simplest possible definition, isn't that correct?
A  Yes, sir.
Q  Where did you get any information that there may have been some other people involved in the incident?
A  I don't know that there was, sir.
Q  So you just happened to ask him that question, is that what you say?
A  Yes, I did, sir.
MR. TAIKEFF:  I have no further questions.
MR. CROOKS:  We have nothing further.
THE COURT:  You may step down.

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