CRIME: The Hearst Nightmare

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escaping briefly from Soledad in December 1971, and then broke out for good from Vacaville last Aug. 2. He served time with DeFreeze at Vacaville, but the two were not known to be close friends. In prison, Wheeler became active in the Venceremos.

WILLIAM WOLFE. Son of a Pennsylvania anesthesiologist, he was attracted to the political activism at Berkeley, where he registered as a student in 1971 and 1972. His friends, who included Remiro and Little, called him "Willie the Wolf." He took black-culture courses at Berkeley and in May 1972 began regularly attending meetings of the Black Cultural Association at various California prisons. On Jan. 11, he was visiting his parents when a friend phoned to say that Remiro and Little had been arrested. That same day he disappeared.

The woman whom the members of the S.L.A. claimed as their latest convert, Tania-Patty, was surely the most unlikely terrorist recruit of all. Granddaughter of the legendary publisher William Randolph Hearst, she grew up with four sisters in a 22-room house in the suburb of Hillsborough. At Berkeley, she was partly supported with $300 a month from a trust fund and credit cards in her father's name. Patty had never demonstrated much interest in politics. Those who know her describe her as reserved and strongwilled. Says Brother-in-Law Jay Bosworth: "I wouldn't characterize her as naive, or as exceptionally worldly. But she was very independent."

Patty left exclusive Santa Catalina, a Monterey boarding school, in 1970 because she found its atmosphere too cloistered. Despite her family's social position, she refused to come out as a debutante. Two years ago, even though her parents disapproved, she moved with Weed into the apartment in Berkeley, near the university where she was a student majoring in art history.

They planned to be married this summer, and Patty had spent much of her time selecting china and silver patterns at Tiffany's and buying dresses. Their life together was tranquil. Says her sister, Virginia Bosworth: "They didn't party a lot. Steve played the guitar and liked to work on his stereo equipment. Patty liked to cook. They both took pride in fixing up the apartment."

Her parents, Randolph Apperson and Catherine Hearst, were notably apolitical and in general stayed aloof from the Burlingame Country Club set around Hillsborough. Since her kidnaping, Randolph, chairman of the Hearst Corp. and editor of the San Francisco Examiner, has devoted himself almost entirely to getting Patty released. Before he paid out $500,000 for food as part of the effort to satisfy the S.L. A.'s demands, he estimated his net worth at $2 million. He earns about $100,000 a year from the Hearst Corp. Wife Catherine, a Southern belle from Atlanta, is a staunch Roman Catholic and a conservative member of the University of California board of regents.

Some of the more conspiratorial amateur speculation about the kidnaping has turned on Steve Weed and is based on rumored and exaggerated reports about his own radical connections. They are more modish than real. The son of a stockbroker in nearby Palo Alto, Weed was graduated from Princeton with a degree in philosophy and physics in 1969; he was captain of the track team and was mildly active in the antiwar movement. True, he was friendly with several members of the university's loosely

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