May 18, 1987 |
Shooting victim James Ramseur is expected to testify for the prosecution today as the trial of subway gunman Bernhard Goetz resumes in Manhattan Supreme Court. His appearance will give prosecutor Gregory Waples a second victim's story to go along with Troy Canty's earlier testimony, as the state prepares to rest its case that Goetz used "unreasonable force" in wantonly shooting four 19- year-olds on a subway train more than two years ago. Goetz is being tried on charges of attempted murder.
January 12, 1987 |
A state board has ruled that one of the young men shot by Bernhard Goetz aboard a subway train two years ago was trying to rob him. The ruling by the Crime Victims Board is the first by any official body to support Goetz's claim that he shot four men in self-defense. Goetz is expected to go on trial next month for shooting the four, who have said that they innocently asked Goetz for $5. The board ruled after one of the four, Troy Canty, asked for compensation that is available from the state for victims of crimes.
May 20, 1987 |
James Ramseur, who balked at testifying during an earlier appearance, told a Manhattan Supreme Court jury yesterday how he took a bullet in the chest as Bernhard Goetz rose from his subway seat, pistol belching at him and three cohorts on an errand of robbery. Ramseur, 21, said the youths were enroute to rob some video machines when his friend Troy Canty approached Goetz on an IRT train over two years ago. Ramseur, who is serving eight to 25 years for rape, robbery and sodomy, told prosecutor Gregory Waples he thought Canty was asking the time but that he could not hear because of the subway noise.
May 11, 1988 |
The Trial of Bernhard Goetz, tonight's new edition of American Playhouse (Ch. 12, 9 p.m.), is an amazing, unsettling event. This presentation is just what its title says: a dramatization of the trial of Goetz, the New York electrical engineer who shot four young men in a Manhattan subway car on Dec. 22, 1984, after they had asked him for money. What in theory sounds tedious - a 2 1/2-hour dramatization of the Goetz trial transcript - is in practice a hynotizing set piece. Director Harry Moses has whittled down 4,600 pages of trial transcript.
January 17, 1986 |
A judge yesterday dismissed attempted-murder and assault charges against subway gunman Bernhard Goetz, saying the grand jury that indicted him was improperly instructed on his right to self-defense. Justice Stephen Crane of the state Supreme Court filed a 35-page brief dismissing the four attempted-murder charges and four counts of assault against Goetz, who became known as the "subway vigilante" for shooting four youths who he feared were about to rob him on a subway train when they asked for $5 on Dec. 22, 1984.
June 21, 1987
DEC. 22, 1984: An unidentified gunman opens fire on a crowded Manhattan subway car, wounding four Bronx teens. A conductor halts the train and the gunman disappears down the tracks. Dec. 23, 1984: Witnesses report that youths were harassing and possibly trying to rob the man. Police form a Vigilante Task Force. Dec. 31, 1984: After nine days on the run, a 37-year-old Manhattan electronics engineer named Bernhard Hugo Goetz turns himself in to police in Concord, N.H., and makes detailed, taped statements about the shootings.
May 2, 1987 |
For the second time in his life, Bernhard Goetz found himself in the same place as Troy Canty yesterday. They hardly looked at one another. The first time was the afternoon of Dec. 22, 1984, when the 18-year-old Bronx drug addict and petty thief walked over to Goetz in a subway car and either "asked" for (Canty's story) or "demanded" (Goetz's story) $5. This time it was in a jammed, fifth-floor courtroom in lower Manhattan where Goetz is on trial for attempted murder and other crimes in the subsequent shootings of Canty and three other Bronx youths.
June 3, 1987 |
The defense rested yesterday in the five-week-old trial of accused "subway vigilante" Bernhard Goetz without the 39-year-old electronics engineer being called to the witness stand. "The jury already sees and understands that there is no case here," attorney Barry Slotnick said afterward. "There is no reason to put Bernie Goetz on the stand. He has already been seen by the jury in his most tender moment. " Slotnick was referring to the playing during the trial's opening weeks of a pair of gut-wrenching taped statements Goetz made to police nine days after the Dec. 22, 1984, shootings of four Bronx youths on a crowded subway car. Prosecutor Gregory Waples has argued that Goetz's admissions on the tapes - including that he intended "to murder them" and to "hurt them as much as possible" - almost single-handedly proved the state's case.
July 12, 1986 |
Bernhard Goetz is back in the news. You remember him. He's the fella who gained fame as "the subway vigilante" in the city of New York. He stuck a loaded gun in his belt and went underground. It was 1:40 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 22, 1984. Four thugs, blacks, approached Goetz, who is white, on the train. One of the hoodlums, Troy Canty, asked Goetz for $5. Goetz seemed agreeable. "I have five for each of you," he said. Then he reached for the loaded gun in his belt and shot Canty in the chest.
June 17, 1987 |
Subway gunman Bernhard Goetz, cleared of all but one charge in the notorious shootings of four black youths, wants only to return to the private life he led before the case forced him into the spotlight. "I'm glad it's over," Goetz, who could avoid imprisonment or be jailed up to seven years, told the limousine driver who sped him from the courthouse. "The last two years have been hell. " The shooting attracted worldwide attention and sparked national debate on self-defense, crime, vigilantism and the right to carry guns.