Serial 581

[Editor’s note: Several of the subjects whose names are deleted in this serial are known to the editor. Those notations have been indicated by red type.]

0 292215Z NOV 78
FM LOS ANGELES (89-436) (3) (P)
TO DIRECTOR (89-4286) IMMEDIATE
SAN FRANCISCO (89-250) IMMEDIATE (SF VIA FBIHQ)
BT
UNCLAS
RYMUR, 00: SAN FRANCISCO.

Re San Francisco teletypes to the Bureau dated November 21, 1978 and Los Angeles telephone call to San Francisco November 28, 1978 concerning [Steve Ramirez].

After several unsuccessful attempts, investigator [Ramirez], Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office, was interviewed and provided the following information:

On or about May 28, 1978, [name withheld] [Wade Medlock] and [name withheld] [Mabel Medlock], former Peoples Temple (PT) members, [address withheld], Los Angeles, California, telephone [number withheld] appeared at the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office alleging that Jim Jones and James McElvane of the PT extorted from them real

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property amounting to $135,000 in May 1977. This appeared to be a violation of California State Law 487.1 PC and 519 PC (Extortion).

The [Medlocks] were active PT members from 1971 until the summer of 1977, donating 25 and 50 percent of their total net salaries to the PT. In February 1977, the [Medlocks] were asked to come to the office of Jim Jones located in the church on Alvarado Street in Los Angeles. Present during this conference were Jones, his top aid [aide], McElvane, Hugh Fortsyn [Hue Fortson], Florida Johnson, Vee Hollings, Kay Nelson, residence [address deleted], Los Angeles, and Archie Ijames. Jones told the [Medlocks] that they would have to sell their homes and give the money to him or they would die; he would kill them. The [Medlocks] refused and Jones again threatened them by saying a PT member who did not contribute towards the Temple died as a result of that negligence. Mr. [Medlock] stated he was under extreme pressure at the time and because of the threats, agreed to sell their properties. Both pieces of property were subsequently listed by the Enola M. Nelson Realty, Los

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Angeles, and the listing party was Kay Nelson, NPT member who was present during the initial conference.

[Ramirez] has verified that the [Medlocks] properties were actually sold.

After the sell [sale], the [Medlocks] were moved by the Temple to the PT apartment house at [address withheld] where they had to pay $125 a month rent. They subsequently moved to the [deleted] address as they were afraid McElvane was aware that San Francisco attorney Tim Stoen was representing him in a law suit against Jones and McElvane.

According to the [Medlocks], Jones openly took credit for the deaths of Christopher Lewis and Archie Mitchell because of their failure to comply with PT orders. The deaths of both of these individuals have been verified by [Ramirez].

Christopher Lewis, date of birth September 24, 1943, was murdered in San Francisco on December 10, 1977 outside of the residence at 1447 Palou Avenue. John Archie Mitchell

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died of “natural causes” on April 8, 1975.

The [Medlocks] named the following individuals who were also coerced by Jones and McElvane to seller property:

Claud and Loudimple Goodspead, [address withheld], Los Angeles, Annette Jones, current address unknown, previously owned property at 29th and Arlington and in Baldwin Hills, California, and Mary Rogers, [address withheld], Los Angeles.

In connection with the above investigation, which is still pending, [Ramirez] has interviewed the following individuals:

Jeanne Mills, the name Deanne Mirtle [Mertle], 3028 Regent Street, Berkeley – Mills and her husband, Al, are former PT members who turned over all of their possessions to the church. They are cooperative and can furnish considerable background information regarding beatings administered to PT members. They had also furnish information regarding PT attorney Eugene Chaiken [Chaikin], San Francisco, who allegedly made PT members sign power of attorney papers and blank grant

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deeds and notarized notes to demonstrate their commitment to the cause. They can also allegedly furnish information regarding Jones’ statements concerning “the 100 left behind”, referring to people hand picked by Jones and assigned to kill all of the “traitors” who defected from the church. Mrs. Mills allegedly personally saw shipments of guns being packed for shipment to Guyana

[Name deleted] [Gordon Lindsay], freelance writer, Los Angeles, was interviewed by [Ramirez] on July 19, 1978. During this contact, [Lindsay] spoke of an interview he had with former PT member Debra Layton. Layton reported a mass suicide plot that Jones had PT members undergo in Guyana. She described the incident by saying Jones had everybody line up and take a couple of brownish-red liquid. Jones led everyone to believe it was poison and ordered them to drink it. According to Layton, everyone took part in this exercise and followed Jones’ orders. [Lindsay] was interviewed by Bureau agents on November 27, 1978.

[Ramirez] attempted to interview Vee Hollings and Florida

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Johnson at [address withheld]. However, they were not cooperative.

[Name deleted] writer for the “New West” Magazine, 9665 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills – [Name deleted] has done extensive research on the PT and is cooperative.

[Name deleted], Fresno, California, telephone [number deleted] – former PT member who turned over a considerable amount of property to the church. [Name deleted] has been interviewed by Bureau agents.

[Name and address deleted] San Francisco – a PT member from 1967 through 1973. He can allegedly furnish information regarding confessions he personally signed claiming responsibility for violent acts, of being a part of a revolutionary group that was out to overthrow and kill the president, and various sexual assaults. [Name deleted] is cooperative.

[Names and address deleted] [Marvin and Jackie Swinney], Little River, South Carolina, telephone [number deleted] – PT members from 1965 through 1975. The [Swinneys] can furnish considerable

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background information on Jones and are cooperative.

[Name and address deleted], San Francisco, telephone [number deleted] – a PT member for eight years. [Name deleted] allegedly witnessed numerous PT acts administered at the direct and indirect command of Jones, these acts described as blackmail and continual intimidation.

Attorney [Name and address deleted], San Francisco, telephone [number deleted]. Represented former PT member [Name and address deleted], San Francisco, in a law suit against the PT. [Name deleted] appears cooperative.

[Name and address deleted], Ukiah, California, telephone [number deleted] – A PT member from 1968 to 1975. [Name deleted] allegedly observed numerous physical beatings and witnessed members signing confessions of various types usually dealing with theft, incest, etcetera, and acts against the government.

Name and address deleted], Ukiah, California, telephone [number deleted] – a PT member from 1967 to 1974. [Name deleted] cooperative and allegedly has considerable information regard-

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ing Jones’ activities.

[Ramirez] additionally advised that the PT previously occupied locations at 4800 South Western and 1366 South Alvarado, Los Angeles. Many of the members reside in an apartment house located at 1435 Alvarado Terrace, Los Angeles.

He also mentioned that Jones allegedly had an adopted Korean daughter, Susan [Suzanne] Jones, approximately 24 to 25 years of age, last known residing in the San Francisco area. Susan Jones defected from the PT.

He mentioned that June Crym, a PT member, is an employee of San Francisco attorney Charles Garry.

Concerning the beating administered by Paul Flowers and Jim McElvane to former PT member David Wise, [Ramirez] stated that it is his concern that Wise and Jones were involved homosexually, further that he was beaten because he defected from the PT, and it was believed he might expose Jones’ homosexual tendencies. [Ramirez] does not know the current whereabouts of Wise.

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[Ramirez] also believes that the following former PT members could be helpful in this investigation:

[Name and address deleted], Santa Cruz, California, telephone [number deleted]; [Name and address deleted], Dallas, Texas; [Name and address deleted] Street, Sacramento, California; [Name and address deleted], Long Beach, California, telephone [number deleted]; and [Name deleted] telephone [number deleted].

[Ramirez] does not know the current whereabouts of James Nelson McElvane. Efforts to locate McElvane have disclosed that he has a brother-in-law, James Nelson, resides in the Los Angeles area, telephone [number deleted]. According to [name deleted], telephone [number deleted], she saw McElvane on November 16, 1978, between 1:00 and 2:00 P.M. at the Enola Nelson Realty Company, 3840 Crenshaw Boulevard, Los Angeles. [Name deleted] states that McElvane normally resides at the PT Apartments, 1435 Alvarado Terrace, Los Angeles. McElvane is described as a Negro male, born [information deleted], 6’6”, 245 pounds, brown hair, brown eyes, previous address

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1031 Page Street, San Francisco.

[Ramirez] has no list of former or current PT members. He does, however, have in his possession approximately 500 letters from individuals who were PT members during the spring and fall of 1978. These letters protested his investigation of Jones.

Per San Francisco instructions, the identities of the letter writers will be furnished the Bureau and San Francisco by airtel. After this list is compared with the Guyana death list, appropriately will be sent out by San Francisco.

Los Angeles leads resulting from above interview are being handled and Bureau and San Francisco will be notified of results.

All additional leads are being left to the discretion of San Francisco.

Armed and dangerous; suicidal tendencies.

BT

Originally posted on April 13th, 2019.

Last modified on July 22nd, 2022.
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