On Tuesday (July 25th), Mustafa Hassan appeared alongside attorney Benjamin Crump at a press conference where he detailed overhearing a comment made as NYPD officers were restraining Talmadge X Hayer, one of the assassins of Malcolm X outside of the Audubon Ballroom that confirmed to him that the department, as well as the FBI, knew that there would be an attempt on his life beforehand.
Hassan, 84, recounted the events of what took place at the Audubon, now The Malcolm X & Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center. He was a member of the Organization of African American Unity, formed by Malcolm X in 1964, and a member of his security detail. He recalled that after the shooting, he managed to knock down Hayer. After checking on Malcolm X, he went outside to find Hagan being beaten up by crowd members and NYPD officers trying to step in. Hassan then said he heard one officer ask, “Is he one of us?”, referencing Hagan.
For Hassan, that confirmed the NYPD’s involvement. “No doubt in my mind,” he said. He also related from his sworn court affidavit that Eugene Roberts, a police undercover agent and informant had detailed seeing a “dry run” on Malcolm’s life just a week prior to the assassination. “The government was involved in the conspiracy to kill Malcolm X,” Crump said, going on to say that the comment may give Malcolm X’s family the basis behind their legal claim against the NYPD and federal government for damages. “It tells us they knew something was going down. They were saying is this guy with us because they knew they had planted Black people in there who were informants.
Two of the activist’s daughters, Ilyasah Shabazz and Quibilah Shabazz were also present at the press conference. Both were present at the time of the assassination. While Quibilah declined to comment, Ilyasah Shabazz said “We want the truth to be known. And justice to be served.” Crump stated that he hoped Hassan’s statement would compel the Biden administration to re-open the investigation into Malcolm X’s murder and how much of a role the federal government had in the incident. He also referenced the city’s $36 million settlement last October with Muhammad Aziz, and Khalil Islam, two men wrongfully convicted of the murder and exonerated.
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