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This is a continuation of the interview with Congressman
Ed Koch on December 23, 1975.
I have to go back the next day to defend these youngster.
And I'm frightened, but it's my job. So I go back the next
day and pick them up at this trailor and we go to the courthouse,
and the sheriff says we can get into the courtroom. And we
had a number of spectators, a lot of blacks who were supportive,
so to speak. And he says, “Okay, the niggers out.” And the
blacks have to get out. And then, “The nigger defendants on the
other side of the room.” It was a segregated courtroom. So
when the judge takes his position on the bench, I say, “Your
Honor, I want to make a protest. The sheriff has ordered the
black members of the public out of the courtroom and has
directed [I think we called them Negroes then, not blacks]
the Negro defendants on the other side of the room. And I
protest. This cannot be allowed.” So the judge says, “Okay,
tell them not to do it.” I said, “Your Honor, I can't tell the
sheriff what to do or what not to do. You have to tell the sheriff
what to do.” So he said, “Let ‘em back in.” And they allowed
them back in. I felt really terrific about that.
This is what they call a court not of record. They made
no transcripts of what took place here. We don't have that anymore.
It would be like a justice of the peace. We don't have that
here, but they had it there. What was interesting was that they
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