The Nation of Islam and the Zebra Murders
The four men went out hunting that night. But their prey was human. White humans, to be exact. Only they didn’t consider whites human, but rather “grafted snakes,” “white devils,” and “blue-eyed devils.”They grabbed three children, and tried to get them into their van, but the resourceful kids ran away.
The children were Michele Denise Carrasco, 11, Marie Stewart, 12, and Marie’s 15-year-old brother, Frank.
The angry, frustrated hunters went back to their van, and sought after new quarry. They found it in the form of a happy married couple, out for an after-dinner walk near their home on Telegraph Hill. The wife ran away, but when one of the hunters put a gun to her husband’s chest and said he’d kill him, she stopped and returned. Her devotion cost her her life.
In the van, the hunters brutally assaulted the husband and wife, and two of the hunters (Cooks and Green) robbed the husband and wife, and two (Cooks and Harris) sexually molested the wife. Parking near some deserted railroad tracks in the Potrero District, the hunters had at husband and wife alike, taking turns hacking their faces with a machete, and nearly decapitating the wife, before leaving them for dead.
The couple was named Quita and Richard Hague. The date was October 20, 1973.
Quita Hague was dead, but a hideously mutilated Richard Hague miraculously survived.
The hunters that night were Jesse Lee Cooks, Larry Green, and Anthony Cornelius Harris. Cooks, Green, and Harris were members of the Black Muslims (now known as the Nation of Islam), who had been recruited, along with dozens of other Black Muslims, to randomly murder whites.
That was the official beginning of the “Zebra” Killings, which would be carried out on the streets of San Francisco, and would hold the city by the bay – one of the most beautiful in the world – in a state of terrified siege for the next six months. Or rather, would hold white San Franciscans in a state of terror. As black residents told reporters, they felt just fine, thank you.
The Zebra Killings were so called because the San Francisco Police Department reserved radio frequency “Z” (“Zebra” in military and police parlance) for all dispatches that might be related to the serial killings.
It would be months before the SFPD would connect the Quita Hague killing to the Zebra case. That is because although the Hague case had in common with the San Francisco killings and attempted murders to come, that it was a random black-on-white murder by youngish black men who stood out for being conservatively dressed and groomed, the cases that formed the profile that stood out to the detectives in the SFPD Homicide Detail were all carried out with a .32 pistol, and did not involve robbery or sexual molestation. (Youngish black men who were conservatively dressed and groomed were and are hallmarks of the Nation of Islam (NOI).)
Between October 20, 1973 and April 16, 1974, Jesse Lee Cooks, Larry Green, and Anthony Cornelius Harris, as well as J.C. (aka J.C.X.) Simon and Manuel Moore, murdered at least 15 whites and grievously wounded at least another nine whites in failed murder attempts. In at least one case (“John Doe #169”), the devils kidnapped a homeless white man, took him to Black Self-Help Moving and Storage, the NOI-owned business where all of the above-named killers but Cooks worked, bound and gagged their victim, and began chopping off his body parts while he was still alive. (Cooks worked at the NOI-owned Shabazz Bakery; according to Anthony Harris, the NOI assassins had butchered at least one other white victim at Black Self-Help.)
The End of an Era?
Remembering The Zebra Killings
Lest We Forget: Remembering the Zebra Victims