Interview with David J. Vann
QUESTION 19
INTERVIEWER:

IT WAS A LONG TIME BEFORE HE WAS BROUGHT TO TRIAL, BUT WHY?

David J. Vann:

Well, one of the main reasons it was a long time before he was brought to trial is the FBI was called in by the city to do the initial investigation, and there was such a degree of distrust between the Birmingham Police Department and the FBI, that the FBI and the Justice Department would never give any of the records to uh, to either the State of Alabama or the City of Birmingham. And, ff course I, having been a counter-intelligence agent myself, I know the policy of protecting informants had a great deal to with the FBI policy in those days. But it wasn't until after Jimmy Carter became President, the Attorney General of the state, Bill Baxley, and myself, put all the pressure we could on the new Attorney General and they did agree to allow a review of those records, by the state Attorney General's office, and within about six months, uh, prosecution was begun of Mr. Chambers. Unfortunately, in the meantime, the FBI at least claimed that they had lost a lot of their records, and most of the physical evidence that the FBI collected at the scene that day, was nowhere to be found. I think that if that FBI policy had been different