Tags: Barack Obama | Castro-Cuba | | Chris Christie | Barack Obama | trooper | Cuba

Christie Presses Obama to Demand Cuba Returns Trooper's Killer

Image: Christie Presses Obama to Demand Cuba Returns Trooper's Killer
Joanne Deborah Chesimard. (Handout/Reuters/Landov)

By    |   Monday, 22 Dec 2014 09:12 AM

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is petitioning President Barack Obama to demand that Cuba return a woman convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper 41 years ago.

According to The New York Times, in a letter to the president, the possible 2016 GOP presidential hopeful is insisting that the United States secure the return of Joanne Chesimard before any further consideration is given to restoring diplomatic relations with Cuba.

Chesimard, a leader of the Black Liberation Army and the first woman ever to be named to the FBI's "Most Wanted Terrorist" list, is believed to be living freely in Cuba. Federal and state officials have offered a reward of up to $2 million for information leading to her apprehension, the Times reported.

Christie described Cuba's willingness to grant her asylum as "an affront to every resident of our state, our country, and in particular, the men and women of the New Jersey State Police, who have tirelessly tried to bring this killer back to justice," The Associated Press reported.

Christie was also outspoken in his opposition to Obama's decision to normalize relations with Cuba.

"I do not share your view that restoring diplomatic relations without a clear commitment from the Cuban government of the steps they will take to reverse decades of human rights violations will result in a better and more just Cuba for its people," Christie wrote, according to the Times.

Chesimard was convicted in the death of Werner Foerster after he and another trooper stopped her and two others on the New Jersey Turnpike. In 1979, she escaped from a New Jersey prison where she was serving a life sentence and was found to be living in Cuba in the 1980s.

The case of Chesimard has been an "open wound" for State Police and the trooper's family, Col. Rick Fuentes, superintendent of the State Police, told the Times.

"You can't ever rest until a person like this is serving his or her sentence for that crime," he said.

Chesimard, who was injured during the attack on the officer, has insisted she is innocent and maintains that she is a victim of a judicial system that is racist.

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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is petitioning President Barack Obama to demand that Cuba return a woman convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper 41 years ago.
Chris Christie, Barack Obama, trooper, Cuba
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2014-12-22
Monday, 22 Dec 2014 09:12 AM
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