Last one in

For what it’s worth, a person who says he’s Mike Bortin writes to remind us he was released from prison two years ago. Who is Mike Bortin? He was a member of the Symbionese Liberation Army and one of the people — along with Kathleen Soliah (now Sara Jane Olson), Emily Harris, and James Kilgore — whom Patty Hearst claimed committed the bank robbery in which Myrna Opsahl, a bank customer, was killed. He told part of his story to the Star Tribune last week, before Olson was rearrested.

Bortin, William Harris, and Emily Montague (formerly Emily Harris, the woman who admits she accidentally killed Opsahl), got prison terms ranging from six to eight years.

Olson was also sentenced to 6 years in the case in 2003, and had previously been given a 14 year sentence for planting car bombs.

Montague and Harris have also since been released from prison.

“Why is Sara being unmercifully attacked and vilified,” the writer asks. “Selective witch hunting?”

Does he have a point?

  • GregS

    No he does not have a point.

    Mr. Bortin and the others were charged with one crime, Ms. Soliah was charged with two.

  • Bob Collins

    Is it at all unusual that a sentence for attempted murder is longer than the sentence for the killing of Myrna Opsahl?

  • GregS


    Ms Soliah attempted to kill police officers, which considering the risk that police face on a daily basis carries a heavier sentense.

    The issue is not Ms. Soliah’s aborted release, it is why were the others released so early?

  • Bob Collins

    … and why, apparently, there was no outcry that they were?

  • GregS

    If an outcry happens without media coverage is it still an outcry?

    I am sure the family of Myrna Opsahl raised an outcry at the release of the others but they were just one family. On the other hand, the Los Angeles Police Department has an on staff publicist who knows how to handle the media. Their cries were heard both in the press and in the Corrections Dept.

  • c

    Well is it a witchhunt? yes I would say it is. but why? and who has this vendetta out on Sarah Olson? what will it bring to them?

    I liked the article in the Strib-this is how I think of this woman though I don’t know her personally. She does not belong in prison.