Former Black Panther David Rice—one of two Black Panthers charged in the death of an Omaha police officer in 1970—died in prison Saturday night.
According to multiple reports, Rice, also known as Mondo we Langa, was treated for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease since 2013.
Nebraska Department of Correctional Services spokesman Andrew Nystrom said Langa died around midnight Saturday at the state penitentiary in Lincoln, Nebraska.
“The 68-year-old Rice, who had changed his name to Mondo we Langa, was convicted along with fellow Black Panther Edward Poindexter in the death of officer Larry Minard. Authorities say they lured police to a house with a 911 call, then detonated a homemade bomb that killed Minard,” reports ABC.
Langa and Poindexter were investigated by the FBI COINTELPRO during the height of the Black Panthers’ activism and in recent years Amnesty International called for a retrial as new details about the case were discovered. They called for the release of the two men or a retrial but neither request was made in 2009.
The discovery of the 911 call tape pins the two men to the unfortunate killing of officer Larry Minard. In 1970, witness Duane Peak was 15 years old and Langa and Poindexter believed that the voice in the recording was that of an adult male. Because of this revelation there was a 1983 appeal, but the judge determined there was not enough information to create reasonable doubt, reports the Associated Press.
Langa remained in prison for 45 years. He asked for parole in 2014 but that request was denied.
A pending investigation will lead to further details about Langa’s death. At the moment, investigators don’t know how he died.