Behind enemy lines

Stewart, Al-Fatah

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Dr. Al-fatah Stewart, D.D. Sullivan Correctional Facility Fallsburg, New York 12733 Date: April 13th 2015 5,301 words 379 lines 16 pages 61 paragraphs BEHIND ENEMY LINES (The untold story of a true fighter) I was born July 5th 1974, in Mount Sidonham hospital located in a part of New York City called Harlem. My father, Wayne Stewart, a humorous, dark cinnamon complexioned black man, about five foot seven in height, weighing a chiseled one hundred and sixty pounds, was a Vietnam veteran, who served two tours in Vietnam and was a decorated officer of the S.E.A.R. [1] team in the United States Armed Forces. My mother, a five foot three, one hundred and thirty pound caramel skin toned ball of fire, was an active member of the Black Liberation Army, [2] and a martial arts instructor in the discipline of Hung Gar. They quarreled about political views on a regular basis. He would get mad and call her a Commy and she would call him Uncle Sam's puppet. I know my mother is crazy but my father was crazier because he married her. I think they met in a mental institution and I was the result of that meeting. His father, my paternal grandfather, whom we called O.D. [3] He got this nickname from his air force buddies during World War II and it stuck to him throughout the rest of his life. He was born and raised in the Louisiana Bayous. I used to think he wrestled alligators because he never wore shoes and spent more time in the Louisiana swamps than he did anywhere else, unless he was scaring me to death flying me around in his crop duster. His father’s father, my great great grandfather, Simon, brought the family there from Scotland and from a place called Memphis in Egypt before that. It was explained to me, by grandpa O.D., that, Muslims began fighting with Christians; both religious groups were killing people who would not convert to either Islam or Christianity. Therefore, my great grandfather Simon, who was a witch, and followed the path of our ancestors, took the family to Scotland to avoid warring in defense of a belief that has been around for over twenty five thousand years. Scotland is where my family adopted the name Stewart. [4] Families there, are known as clans and had to register the family last name and create a family crest, known as a blazon and this is how our family was always recognized during times of feudal law in the British archives. When King James, who wrote his own version of the Holy Bible, enacted the witch act in 1692, people in Europe began having people killed who were suspected of witchcraft. In 1885, it was named witch-hunt, and great grandpa Simon took the family (four brothers and eight sisters) to New Orleans, Louisiana in the United States.[5] My father's mother; the product of Haitian immigrants; who we all called Little Mama, who was one of the sweetest women on earth; petite four feet eleven in height and about one hundred pounds soaking wet with a brick in each pocket, had a mahogany brown skin toned, a head full of pure white hair, and was a Voodoo priestess. Her parents were originally from West Africa in a place called Dahomey the original name of the West African republic now known as Benin, where Voodoo was born. Voodoo, also known as Voodoun, grew up in Haiti and spread to Louisiana when people from Haiti were kidnapped and brought to Louisiana to work on slave plantations. (My great great grandmother, Nanna, was kidnapped from Haiti, made to work on a slave plantation in Louisiana and eventually owned the plantation she once was a slave on.) My mother, Patricia, a full-blooded Egyptian woman, a descendant from a bloodline that lived peacefully before the Arab Muslims Conquered Egypt in A.D. 641. Her mother, my maternal grand mother, Mary, who raised me, migrated from a place called Thebes in Egypt to the United States with her parents to Swansboro Georgia. There she became a pediatrician in the era of Jim Crow in the south, then moved to Asbury park New Jersey where she met my maternal grand father, William, who was stationed at Fort Dix in the United States Army. He was from a place called Abydos in Egypt. Meeting my grand mother, who was also a native of Egypt, they instantly hooked up. By Egyptian custom, dating is forbidden, so they got married and started a family. When a lot of the racism from the south trickled down to New Jersey, they moved to Harlem, which was the safest place for black people in those times. My mother and father met, fell in love, and got married in Harlem. I love Harlem, from its hot exciting trend setting summers; its cold snowy winters where we had snowball fights, went ice-skating and wore minks and pretty butter soft leather coats we caught on sale in the summer. During the rainy spring weather, we enjoyed indoor activities; concerts at the Apollo theatre, movies, the black circus, bowling, roller skating rinks, boxing matches and events at Madison Square Garden. In Fall, we wore back to school attire; everyone wanted to look good, and it was a time to scout for girls and meet new friends in the next grade. This was also the dirt bike season where the whole neighborhood would race dirt bikes down 125th Street and Eighth Avenue all the way to 155th Street and Eighth Avenue. The streetlights were even in harmony. If a person road over forty five miles per hour, he or she could catch every green light from 125th Street and Eighth Avenue, all the way down to the finish line at 155th Street and Eighth Avenue. What was truly unique about these races is they had to be on one wheel. Most of the summer, people would practice popping wheelies in an effort to be prepared for the Fall wheelie races. The races were illegal but the police never bothered us until one man fell and slid a half a block where the skin from his back rolled off his body like pizza dough. Most of the cops had motorcycles; enjoyed watching the races, and have been patrolling the neighborhoods so long that they not only knew most of us but they knew our parents as well. However, this accident ended the wheelie races and started the police chases, which became more fun than the races because of the danger involved. If caught, they'd kick our butts and trash our bikes, then they would take us home, tell our parent’s about the high-speed chase we led them on that could have gotten us killed and we’d get our butts kicked again. Not to mention we lost a twenty five hundred dollar dirt bike. (This hurt more than the butt whipping did) By my eighth birthday, my grandparents started having me spend the summer time with family members in Egypt. The plane rides were a total of about seventeen hours where it would stop in Germany, and then I had to switch planes and then continue to Cairo in Egypt. Once off the plane I felt like the spirits of my ancestors hugged me. Over twelve of my cousins who greeted me like royalty, and protected me like a rare jewel always picked me up in Cairo. “Welcome home home little cousin.” My older cousin Ahmad said greeting me with a big hug and a kiss as I entered a huge waiting area after getting off of the plane like I always did, until my cousins picked me up who were always there when I got there, grabbing my bags, hugging and kissing me and ushering me along. “I am happy to be back Ahmad.” I returned and hugged and kissed him on both cheeks, then was almost smothered by the rest of my cousins with hugs and kisses and trying to answer everyone at once. As we traveled by jeep, deep into the country along the Nile River, where my family lived, I felt like a child in the loving protective arms of my mother. I felt at home, stress free, and the sky was deep blue with out a cloud in sight. I saw some of the most exotic animals. I could hear nature in its purest form, from hippos and lions, to hyenas and giant beetles that hissed like snakes. Even the air tasted sweet. My father died in 1987. My mother went into the Navy, I guess he finally got to her and put an end to a lot of her radical rebelliousness and I was left in the loving care of my maternal grandmother when my mother would go off to the service. I started boxing at the age of nine and was sometimes sent to Detroit to spend the summer with my uncle, who trained boxers in the Kronk Gym. I became a great fighter, won trophies, belts and even dominated the nationals in Germany. Most of my workouts were in water and I loved to swim. On May 25th, 1990, at the age of fifteen (15), I lived with my maternal grandmother Mrs. Mary Bennett, permanently. She retired from the medical practice, opened and owned a dry cleaner in downtown Manhattan. I loved the smell of that place. I was enrolled in Manhattan High school, in downtown Manhattan. I used to take the D-train from school, up to the Bronx, getting off at 182-183rd Street station, on the Grand Concourse and walk one block down to 181st Street on the Grand Concourse to my mother’s apartment building of 2095 Grand Concourse on week days to spend time with my mother until my grandmother would call and let me know she was home from work. On this day, a woman told me that my mother was just rushed to the hospital because she and her boyfriend had a fight. I ran to the hospital. I asked the person at the desk about my mother. She directed me to the emergency room. I ran in. The room is all white and full of people with blue uniforms and masks over their faces. I see my mother, she doesn't look human, dried caked up blood covers her face, its needles, tubes running out of her everywhere, machines hooked up to her, I scream, someone grabbed me. I fight them, more people grab me. Get that kid out of here! I heard a masked man yell. Outside the operating room, a big woman hugs me and holds me tightly. “Is that yo mama?” She asked me. I couldn’t talk. I couldn't believe what this man did to my mother. When I calmed down, the woman held me at shoulder length and said my ma would be alright. I snatched away from her and ran to my mother’s apartment. I ran up to the apartment and unlocked the door with my set of keys to the apartment, I saw blood everywhere, I stepped in a puddle of it as I entered the apartment, my heart started racing. I saw furniture overturned, glass and broken dishes all over the floor crunched under my every step and it sounded so loud that I heard my heart beat in my ears at the same time. The apartment is dim and gloomy, no lights were on, only the light from the sky outside that enters through the windows gave me the ability to see, I smelled something burning, I couldn’t identify this smell but it choked me and I heard noise coming from my mother's bedroom. I called out, who's there! Anybody home? No answer. It was only about twenty steps from the door to my mother’s bedroom but it seemed like it took me forever to get there. Every step I took, my mind showed me images of my mother hurt, beaten, and with a blood-covered face. When I finally peaked into the bedroom, that burning smell became stronger and filled the room with smoke. I saw Arnold Southall, my mother’s boyfriend, a slim Jamaican man with long Dreadlocked hair. He is bent over with a glass pipe and inhaling deeply. We locked eyes at the same time. We both then looked at his pillow on the bed, where we both knew he keeps his gun. As if by cue, we both race to the pillow, but he reached it first, and I dove on top of his back punching, screaming, biting. I locked onto his hands with my own as he turned over on his back on the bed and I saw the gun. We rolled off the bed and in the air there was a gunshot. When we hit the floor the gun goes off two more times. I’m on the bottom now, he is on top of me. Everything hurts, I couldn’t breathe, the wind was knocked out of me, I felt hot liquid poring all over my body. He jumped up off of me and ran out of the apartment. I laid there, I was scared to move, I think that I am dying, its blood in my eyes, I couldn’t see. My wind came back and I slowly rolled over onto my stomach. I thought I was shot; I stand to my feet and stumble to the bathroom. I rinsed the blood out of my eyes so that I can see, my skin is burned and there is a gash in my chest. I was bleeding. I didn’t know how to make it stop. I turned the bathroom light on and saw that I was soaked in blood. I stripped down to my briefs and I was filled with relief and then horror because I realized that if this is not my blood than it must be Arnold Southall’s. I rinsed what blood I could off of me. I wasn’t shot; a bullet that opened my flesh creased me. I didn’t bother to dry my self off. I rushed and put on a fresh set of clothes and sneakers. I left the apartment, taking steps three at a time. Once outside, I saw Arnold Southall. He was lying down on the ground in front of the grocery store. I went the opposite direction and walked from 181 Street in the Bronx all the way back to my grandmother’s home in Manhattan. My grandmother came with me to turn my self in. I did seven long hard years for this crime. This case should have been criminal negligent homicide but I was fifteen years old, knew nothing about the law and Spofford detention center did not have a law library, so I was denied access to the court and if I could take my plea back on that case now, I would because of what I know now, and plea to criminal negligent homicide instead of manslaughter. A few months after I turned my self in my older brother, Rashied was murdered on 125th street in Harlem. I came home started boxing again and did a lot of traveling. The last time I was home home in Egypt was 1997 and I cannot wait to go back. This time I am staying for good. This is the land my roots began to grow in. In this same year, I was arrested, tried and found guilty of killing a man I don't even know. On July 10 1997, I was, arrested for the shooting that allegedly occurred on June 17, 1997 of the death of Mr. Leroy Hargis. On August 26, 1999, in the New York County I was found guilty by a Jury for the alleged crime of Murder in the Second Degree. I am an innocent man and I have spent the last Eighteen years of my life inside of a cage for a crime I did not commit. I was, given a codefendant named William Billy Bunce who made a video statement implicating me in this crime he was initially arrested for, same as he did to a Todd Moore for an earlier murder he was arrested for. Later on William Bunce wrote out a recantation and confession to the crime of murder that he accused me of. The case was severed and my attorney Allan P. Haber, never called William Bunce to the stand in my trial to testify and once I was convicted, William Bunce was released without ever going to trial. Huey Phillips and Kenny Nunez, two three time felony offender came forward only after being arrested for serious crimes and it still is not clear whether they brought my name up first or if the police did stating that they heard gunshots then allegedly seen me flee the victims building and that they knew me for seven years, or more which is impossible because I was in a upstate prison for seven years and wasn’t home a full forty five (45) days when this crime took place. Kenny Nunez was arrested for his third felony narcotics sale of controlled substance crack cocaine whereupon he received a sentence of 2 to 4 years at the time when the Rockefeller drug laws were in full effect and during the trial; Nunez claimed that he did not receive any deals for his testimony. (James Williamson was the prosecutor in my case) Huey Phillips was arrested for assault as his third felony. I had written the court with Phillips arrest number in order to obtain his plea allocation, sentence minutes and pre-sentence report and the court directed me to write to the district attorney’s office because the case against Mr. Phillips was never processed or docketed. I wrote the district attorney’s office and A.D.A. F.O.I.L. Officer Ms. Sarah Hines stated that the case against Huey Phillips is sealed. Huey Phillips also testified at my trial under oath and claimed that he never received any type of deal in exchange for his testimony and he, also claimed that he was with his cousin at the time of the incident Octavius Harding and they observed the whole incident together. Octavius Harding the cousin of Huey Phillips when question at my trial stated that his cousin Huey Phillips is lying because he is H.I.V. positive and is afraid to go to jail and do time. Erick Pitt, the nephew of the singer Aaron Hall, came forward two and a half (2 1/2) years after the crime and stated that he had heard gunshots and that he allegedly had seen me fleeing the victims building. Leslie Neptune, an illegal Haitian immigrant facing deportation who had a severe crack addiction came forward twenty five (25) months after the crime and also stated that he had allegedly seen me from a five story window flee the victims building after he heard gunshots. David Irons, a Gang member to the “Blood Gang” and a career criminal serving a sentence of seventy five (75) years to life for robbery and terrorizing 19 Holocaust survivors, claimed that I allegedly confessed to him in jail and that I had allegedly plotted to frame the co-defendant that was given to me for the crime I stand convicted for which the co-defendant has already admitted to committing. There is no D.N.A. or eyewitnesses that claimed that they actually seen me shoot Mr. Leroy Hargis. The 911 phone calls made by witnesses stated that the suspect is 5 foot 10 inches or taller and a stocky 200 pounds or more. I on the contrary am 5 foot 4 inches tall with boots and weigh 160 pounds fully clothed. Ms. Tasha Cucuta testified that I was with her at all times at Ms. Tasha Cucuta Apartment and traveled together during that day when the alleged incident took place. My Sister Ms. Tanya Stewart, also testified to this fact, both made statements to the police at the police station on the day of my arrest identical to my statement made on the day of my arrest to the police at the police station, neither had criminal records and were both legitimately and gainfully employed; Cross examination by the prosecution was totally unproductive and the chronology related by them remained unshaken. Derrick Harris and Ms. Rose Marie Turner stated that they had actually seen the person who committed the crime and that I am not the killer of Leroy Hargis. They further testified that Huey Phillips, Kenny Nunez and Erick Pitt where known to them because they grew up with them and neither of them were anywhere near the vicinity of the incident when it took place. There were two other eyewitnesses who identified someone else as the actual killer of Leroy Hargis in line-ups at the 26th police station conducted by detective Luis Serrano, The identification of these eyewitnesses was never disclosed to me. In a recent F.O.I.L. request I received a DD-5 (complaint form) made by a detective Albert Acevedo that states he received two photos of me from my parole officer Charles Watson two (2) days after the crime. What is so disturbing about this is that I was paroled to the Bronx County and this is a Manhattan Detective who possessed these photos of me a whole month prior to my arrest. I have written my trial attorney and asked if he ever had knowledge of the DD-5 and if so why did he not place detective Albert Acevedo on the stand and ask: Who informed him of my existence and why go to my Bronx parole officer to get photographs of me for investigation in a Manhattan homicide? What was he doing with these photos of me, who or how many people did he show these photos to and where are these photos now? My attorney never responded to these questions. The crime scene, control sheet says that a possible blood sample was secured from the crime scene and the medical examiner conducted forensic biology and serology examination on this sample and the results were never turned over to me. Two private investigators, both retired homicide police officers found five eyewitnesses. (Kerry Ross, Errol Robinson, Barbershop owner Master John, Jesse Griffin and Robert Bradley) to this crime who all stated that I am not the killer of Mr. Leroy Hargis. My trial attorney was, made aware of this fact, and interviewed these witnesses. Had each of them subpoenaed or brought to court every day of my trial but did not put not one of them on the stand to testify. I was convicted and sentenced to twenty five (25) years to life for the killing of Leroy Hargis, which I did not commit. (My trial was held before Judge James Yates in part 31 at 100 Centre Street N.Y., N.Y. 10013) While I have been in prison, I learned as much as possible how the law is formatted in order to prove my innocence. I have filed every type of motion I could possibly to prove my innocence. I have filed a 330.30 motion, five 440.10 motions, two 440.20 motions, a Error Coram Nobis Motion, a Writ of Certiorari, a state habeas corpus, a federal habeas corpus, a re-argument motion and a reconsideration motion to every motion and every single one was shot down and denied. I tracked down the eyewitnesses my attorney never allowed to testify, and received sworn notarized affidavits from them and I filed another 440.10 motion and was denied. I went to the Appellate Division and was still denied because the court claims that I require an affirmation from my trial attorney explaining why he never put these witnesses on the stand to testify. I hounded my attorney with the request by writing him one letter a week for two years until he finally provided me with an affirmation. I filed another 440.10 motion and was denied again without a hearing. I appealed to the Appellate Division and I was denied again by the same court that stated I need an affirmation and this time with the affirmation they stated that there was no question of law or fact. I have written the District Court, Supreme Court, Magistrate and Administrative Judges, U.S. District Attorney, The District attorney of ten different counties, U.S. and New York State Attorney General, the Integrity Unit, Conviction review Bureau, forty eight (48) Congressmen, sixty two (62) Senators, one hundred and fifty (150) Assemblymen, eighty (80) Councilmen, Thousands of Lawyers, every Bar Association, Legal Aid-Society, Prisoners Legal Services, Exoneration agency, Appeals Bureau, Law Schools, Law library, college and Innocent Projects in New York State and even some in other states. Finally the esteemed Law Professor Adele Bernhard of the New York Law School Innocence project accepted my case but even they need help because they lack the funds to effectively represent all of the innocent people they are fighting to free and it takes so much time and I've already been in the deepest darkest corner of hell for eighteen (18) years now. After signing a contract with Law Professor Adele Bernhard to represent me, I recently received a disturbing letter from her after she had my case for two years stating "I should move on with my life and stop trying to convince people to believe a story that doesn’t ring true". Sometimes the truth doesn’t sound right just like the cases of Jabbar Collins, David Renta, Marty Tankleff and Jeffery Deskovic and in the two years that she had my case she hasn’t interviewed not one witness or filed a single motion on my behalf, all I got from her was false hope and as a ordained minister I’ve learned to expect anything from anyone because the devil was once an Angel, So I continue my fight! I have written also Nancy Grace, Sarah Wallace, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, HBO, Showtime, Crime TV, WBLS, WBAI, WPIX, EBONY, JET, the New Yorker, Times Magazine, The New York Times, Daily News, Daily Eagle, Daily Challenge, New York and Washington Post, News Week, News Day, USA Today, New York Law Journal, Village Voice, NAACP. ACLU, Amnesty International, Mr. and Mrs. President of the United States, the Vice President of the United States, The Pardon Attorney, Justice denied, Commission on Civil Rights, Division of Human Rights, The Borough President of Manhattan, New York Civil liberties union. Churches, Legal action network. Prison Legal News, the Governor and Lt. Governor, the Mayor and Police Commissioner in New York city, The department of Justice, the FBI, Internal affairs, The Mayor’s office to combat police corruption and even Howard Thompson (help me Howard) and I am still in a cage suffering. I lost countless loved ones and I was not allowed to go to their funerals or wakes. I have been cut with razors and scalpels, stabbed with knives and ice picks by prisoners. I have been psychologically tortured, physically beaten and sexually assaulted by prison guards. I did over eight (8) years in solitary confinement and I am still standing, I am still strong and I remain unbroken but how much more can a human being take? Was the Justice System designed to ensure justice or to test a person’s mental endurance? Case History: People v. Stewart 295 A.D. 249, 745 N.Y.S. 2d 151, 2002, 99 N.Y. 2d 540, 782 N.E. 2d 579, 752 N.Y.S. 2d 601; 538 U.S. 1003, 123 S.Ct. 1907, 155 L. Ed. 2d 834 Because of that one case I caught as a child, I am judged as a hardened criminal and have been suffering ever since. While in prison, I have earned a Paralegal Certificate [6] in order to know the law and be more capable to fight this case, prove my innocence, and win my freedom. I earned a Doctorate degree in Metaphysics [7] and a Doctorate degree in Divinity [8] all through correspondence courses over the years inside of a cage. I now speak four languages and I am learning to read and write two of them. I still work out and stay fighting fit. I have been the New York State Welterweight and Jr. Middleweight boxing champ for seventeen years and only recently retired because the prison I am now in does not have a boxing program. I have been to every maximum-security prison in New York state within the last eighteen years except Sing Sing, Eastern, and Five points. I am now enrolled in Hudson link College just because. I have been a Barber for fifteen years now, I completed and facilitated the P.A.C.E. program, Aggressive replacement training program, alternative to violence program, Alcohol anonymous, narcotics anonymous, carpentry, business, computers, was a physical education instructor in Wende Correctional Facility for two years until I was sexually assaulted by a racist sadistic prison guard who was obsessed with my physique. Moreover, I still read three books a week that I pick at random from the general library, including the books I receive from Lucy Parson Book store twice a year, which is what I have always done since the first day of my incarceration. I missed all of my daughter's child hood years. She is twenty-five now. My uncle Manny died, along with countless other loved ones while I have been a hostage behind enemy lines. My younger brother who was in college in Pennsylvania was shot in the back outside of a club and is now a paraplegic. It hurts me deeply every time I see him. To add to that pain later in that year, my dear maternal grandmother passed on to join our ancestors on September 19th, 2003. I wasn’t allowed to go to her wake or funeral to pay my last respects. Because my grandfather was a World War II veteran, the United States government buried her with him in the military cemetery (Grandpa passed in 1983). This went against her last wish and so we had to petition the government and force them to dig up her remains and have her remains shipped back home to Egypt where her will stated she wanted to be laid to rest and this process took four years. It was so frustrating but I fought for her like she always fought for me and honored her last wish. Family members over there wrote me a letter and told me when they received her body and sent me photographs of her tombstone. Now she is home. And I can’t wait to get out of prison and go back home too. Thank you for taking the time to read my story. If you or anyone you know can help me in any way, I beg you to please do so. If you can’t, than in the least, I ask that you please spread this story and share it with everyone you come across because this could happen to you or someone you love and even though it hurts being in prison, it hurts more, when you are innocent. In Prayer, DR. AL-FATAH STEWART, D.D. 1. Salvage, Evade, Acquire, and Rescue 2. A Black Militant Communist Revolutionary Organization formed to protect Black people from racial abuse and police brutality in America during the 1970’s 3. Which stood for Overdose because he over did anything and everything in his life. 4. People in Scotland, called great great grand pa Simon Stewart because his skin complexion resembled Stewartite, a mineral consisting of a hydrous phosphate of manganese that is brownish yellow in color and being all districts in Scotland were under the jurisdiction of a steward, he bought his own land and used the name Stewart to register the family under. 5. Louisiana was conquered by King Louis XIV in 1715. President Thomas Jefferson purchased Louisiana from France in 1803 for 15 million dollars. 6. Blackstone Law school 7. Universal Life Church 8. Christian Seminary (True Vine)

Author: Stewart, Al-Fatah

Author Location: New York

Date: April 13, 2015

Genre: Essay

Extent: 16 pages

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