Ex-fugitive speaks at Oregon State University

Chuck Ross | Reporter

A former fugitive who took part in an armed robbery that led to the death of a Boston police officer spoke at Oregon State University on Thursday.

In a talk titled “Surrender: Guerilla to Grandmother” hosted by the school’s Peace Studies program, Katherine Ann Power spoke of her journey from “student activist, a wanted criminal, and a woman who now embraces peace activism rather than violent revolution,” according to Oregon State’s website.

“In 1970, while a student at Brandeis University, Power was involved in a bank heist,” OSU’s website reads. “She and four other activists were hoping to use the money to buy explosives that would help them procure weapons to arm the Black Panthers. During the robbery, one of the participants shot and killed a Boston police officer responding to the crime. Power, who was the getaway driver, escaped capture and disappeared for more than two decades.”

Prior to the bank robbery, Power and her fellow terrorists robbed a National Guard armory in Massachusetts, stealing several hundred rounds of ammunition. The group stole $26,000 in the heist, which left Boston police officer Walter Schroeder dead.

While on the lam, Power moved to Oregon and adopted the name Alice Metzinger. In Oregon, she married and had a son.

In 1993, Power, tired of living the life of a fugitive, surrendered to authorities. She pleaded guilty to armed robbery and manslaughter and served a six-year prison sentence.

Power is working on a memoir titled “Surrender.” As per the terms of her probation, Power was unable to speak publicly about the case until this year.

Upon her release, Power earned a master’s degree from Oregon State University and became an English instructor.

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