Fred Hampton Jr.

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Fred Hampton Jr.
Fred Hampton Jr. 20180415-2289 (cropped).jpg
Hampton Jr. speaking at a 2018 anti-war rally in Oakland
Alfred Johnson

(1969-12-29) December 29, 1969 (age 51)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Years active1988–present
Known forPrisoners of Conscience Committee/Black Panther Party Cubs

Fred Hampton Jr. (born Alfred Johnson; December 29, 1969) is an American political activist who is the only child of assassinated Black Panther Party leader Fred Hampton. He is the president and chairman of the Prisoners of Conscience Committee and the Black Panther Party Cubs.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Hampton is the son of Black Panther Party leader Fred Hampton and his fiancée, Deborah Johnson.[2] Johnson was over eight months pregnant when Hampton Sr. was killed by the Chicago police in a 1969 raid, which occurred 25 days before he was born.[3]

He was given the name Alfred Johnson at birth. His mother had it legally changed to "Fred Hampton Jr." when he was ten years old.[4]

Hampton graduated from Tilden High School and sporadically studied journalism at Olive–Harvey College.[4]


Hampton worked part-time as an auto mechanic while speaking at rallies organized by the National People's Democratic Uhuru Movement (NPDUM) during the late 1980s.[4]

Legal issues[edit]

In 1993, he was convicted of aggravated arson. The case involved the firebombing of a Korean menswear store and a Korean jewelry store in Chicago on Halsted Street. The arson occurred in the aftermath of the 1992 Los Angeles riots after the acquittal of the LAPD officers who beat Rodney King. Hampton and his supporters maintain his innocence, claiming he was framed.[4][5] During the trial, fire officials testified that the bottles that held the gasoline never broke.[6] According to Hampton's supporters, the fingerprint expert for the Chicago Police Department Crime Lab testified that not one of Fred's fingerprints was found on the bottles.[7] Hampton was sentenced to eighteen years in prison, and was paroled on September 14, 2001.

In popular culture[edit]

Hampton appeared in Michel Gondry's 2006 film Dave Chappelle's Block Party.[8] His trial forms the basis of Fall Out Boy's song "You're Crashing, But You're No Wave".[9] He and his father are mentioned in the song "Behind Enemy Lines" by Dead Prez, as well as "Clap for the Killers" by Street Sweeper Social Club.

Hampton worked as a consultant on the film Judas and the Black Messiah, a biopic about his father, which was released on February 12, 2021.[2]


  1. ^ "Honoring the legacy of an activist: Fred Hampton Jr. to speak, April 15". Illinois State University. April 1, 2019. Retrieved May 29, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Baca, Stacey (December 5, 2019). "Black Panther Fred Hampton killed 50 years ago in Chicago police raid". ABC 7 Chicago. Retrieved May 29, 2020.
  3. ^ Yang, Allie (May 15, 2019). "Black Panther Fred Hampton's then-girlfriend remembers the night he was assassinated". ABC News. Retrieved May 29, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d Langer, Adam (July 9, 1998). "Radical Without A Cause". Retrieved September 16, 2019.
  5. ^ Downey, Sarah (June 11, 1998). "Hampton's Son's Backers Protest His Incarceration". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved February 19, 2021.[dead link]
  6. ^ Wilson, Terry (May 20, 1993). "18 Years For Son of Hampton". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on October 21, 2018. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
  7. ^ "An interview with Mahdee Nawabi". Retrieved February 27, 2021.
  8. ^ Dargis, Manohla (March 3, 2006). "A Comedian's Ultimate Goal: Rock the Block". The New York Times.
  9. ^ "Fall Out Boy Album Deets". November 16, 2006. Archived from the original on February 3, 2013. Retrieved June 14, 2011.

External links[edit]