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University Student Thaddeus R. Harrison

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By Owen Eshenroder

(News Court Reporter)

University student Thaddeus R. Harrison was convicted yesterday of felonious assault, stemming from his participation in a Black Action Movement demonstration outside the U-M Administration Building last March.

The 18-year-old black, who resides at 912 Brown, was charged with hurling a granite brick at Ann Arbor Police Detective Paul Bunten during a clash between police and BAM supporters. Bunten, then a patrolman, was struck in the right thigh.

The guilty verdict came after a four-day Circuit Court trial and approximately 10 hours of jury deliberation.

Assistant Prosecutor Thomas F. Shea had sought a conviction for assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder. Felonious assault is a lesser charge but still carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison and a $2,500 fine.

Following the BAM incident, Harrison became the center of a controversy in City Hall when Mayor Robert Harris recommended criminal prosecution of police patrolman John Pear for allegedly using excessive force to “subdue” the youth after his arrest on March 19.

Harris later abandoned that stand after an investigation of the incident by City Administrator Guy C. Larcom.

Defense attorney Morton Leitson of Flint said after the verdict yesterday that he may appeal the case. He said he would check through his notes and go over the entire court proceedings, however, before any possible appeal.

Judge William F. Ager Jr. set sentencing for Feb. 19.