The MOVE Commission wrote that "the firing
of over 10,000 rounds of ammunition in under 90 minutes at a row house
containing children was clearly excessive and unreasonable. The failure
of those responsible for the firing to control or stop such an excessive
amount of force was unconscionable."
As police ran out of ammunition and went to the armory for more, a quiet afternoon standstill began.
According to Philadelphia Tribune
columnist and Temple University Professor Linn Washington, Jr., MOVE
member Jerry Africa, who wasn't in the house, attempted to negotiate
with Mayor Goode during the afternoon standstill. He wanted to tell
Goode that MOVE would disengage from the confrontation if Goode would
agree to an investigation of the Aug. 8, 1978-related MOVE convictions.
Jerry Africa was supported and accompanied
by civil rights activist Randolph Means and former Common Pleas Court
Judge Robert Williams, who at the time was the Democratic Party's
nominee for Philadelphia District Attorney. According to Washington, the three
of them repeatedly tried to call Goode on the telephone, but he would
not take their call. Instead, Goode declared at a press conference that
afternoon that he was now ready "to seize control of the house"by any
Notably, Washington filed this story with the The Philadelphia Daily News, who he worked for at the time,
but it was not published.
Dropping the C-4 Bomb
At 5:00 pm, Managing Director Brooks
telephoned Mayor Goode and said that Sambor, in Goode's words, wanted to
"blow the bunker off and to blow a hole in the roof and to put tear-gas
and water in through that process." Goode's response: "Okay. Keep me
At 5:27 pm, a State Police helicopter
dropped a C-4 bomb on MOVE's roof, which exploded and started a fire on