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Senate Watergate Testimony of Alfred C. Baldwin

Ashton Gray

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Below is a transcript of part of the testimony of Alfred C. Baldwin before the Senate Watergate Committee on 24 May 1973. This is not a complete transcript. If the rest of his testimony can be located it will be posted, but this is a substantial portion of it. It contains important information, and as far as I can determine is not easily available elsewhere.

It was transcribed from the audio of a broadcast of the proceedings. It has been checked for being accurate to the audio, but there may be minor spelling errors, and the spelling of some of the names mentioned has not been chased down.

Ashton Gray


SENATOR ERVIN: Will counsel please call the next witness?

VOICE: Will Mr. Baldwin please take the (unintelligible; announcer voice-over introducing Baldwin)

SENATOR ERVIN: ...will please identify yourself for the record, giving your name, and your place of-- your office address.

BALDWIN'S ATTORNEY: I am Robert Mirdo (unintelligible) 377 Main Street (unintelligible). The last name is spelled "M-I-R-D-O."

SENATOR BAKER: Just for record, Mr. Baldwin, would you give your full name and address?

BALDWIN: Yes, sir. Alfred C. Baldwin, III, 90 Mountain View Terrace, Northaven, Connecticut. We use a mailing address of Hamden, Connecticut, 06517.

Thank you. To make it part of the record my understanding of my status in this total affair, I wish to read the following memorandum into the record at this time.

This memorandum was a memorandum prepared by my attorney, Robert Mirdo. It's titled "Memo to the Record of Alfred C. Baldwin, III." It's written on 7/6/72 at 4:40 a.m.


"On 7/5/72, Robert C. Mirdo, Esquire, J. Terrance O'Grady, Esquire, attorneys known to the government to be representing Alfred C. Baldwin, III, a suspect in the Watergate incident, met with Earl Silbert, Don Campbell, and Seymour Glanzer, all Assistant United States attorneys, and represented to us to be the Assistant United States attorney [sic] handling the Watergate incident. A meeting was held at the United States district courthouse on the morning of 7/5/72, at which time it was represented to us by the government that Baldwin would not be a defendant in the Watergate matter if he cooperated.

"The government attorneys stated that if they were satisfied with Baldwin's information, he would not be indicted. Negotiations ceased at 12:30 p.m. so that O'Grady and I could talk to Baldwin. At 5:45 p.m., we notified the government that Baldwin would cooperate.

"He identified two photographs from a photographic spread, and generally told of his Watergate knowledge. He was again told, as we were, he would be a witness, not a defendant.

"He and O'Grady and I relied on this representation by the government, and plans were made for formal statements in the future. The conference terminated at 7:40 p.m. At the last show-up conference were Campbell, Glanzer, Silbert, FBI agents Lanzo and McKenna, O'Grady, Baldwin, and two or three other persons not known to me by name, but whom I assume to be either agents or members of the staff of Assistant United States attorneys handling this matter."

[Done reading]

Signed, Robert C. Mirdo; dated in the lower left-hand corner 7/6/72, 4:36 a.m.

And then right below that: "This is an accurate account of the happenings of 7/5/72 at the United States District Courthouse, Room 3600 K," again signed Robert C. Mirdo.

I have one further thing, sir. I'm still relying on that promise today as I testify here, and from the very beginning of my decision to cooperate on June 25th, to now, I've attempted to tell the whole truth of this incident to the government. I believed then, as I do now, there is only one government, and I have talked truthfully to the United States attorney, as I will do to this committee.

I do not regret this decision, although my life was at the time shattered. I cannot now find employment, and I have been without funds. My family has been disgraced. I believe that since I was working for the former Attorney General, and White House officials, I would not question to do what I was asked to do. Now I regret only that decision. Regardless of this, I shall now follow through with my commitment to tell the government and the American people the truth.

SENATOR BAKER: Mr. Chairman--would the witness read the first sentence of that statement again?

BALDWIN: [reading] "To make it part of the record my understanding of my status in this total affair, I wish to read the following memo into the record at this time." And then I read the memo, sir.

SENATOR BAKER: Yes, I know you did, but you made a statement about the same agreement still obtains. Turn to that part of it; read that again for me.

BALDWIN: [READING] "I am still relying on that promise today, as I--"

SENATOR BAKER: What promise?

BALDWIN: On the promise of the United States attorneys that if I cooperated, I would be a witness, and not a defendant.

SENATOR BAKER: You conceive, then, that you are here as a witness before a committee of the United States Senate--

BALDWIN: Yes, sir, I do--

SENATOR BAKER: --and any testimony you give us, you will in effect have immunity from prosecution by reason of the, quote, agreement made by the US attorney?

BALDWIN ATTORNEY Mirdo: If I may answer that, Senator: we were not given formal immunity. It was our feeling at the time of the conference with the US attorneys that a promise not to prosecute, on which we acted, would be sufficient for our purposes. We do not feel that there is any exposure, since Mr. Baldwin has already spoken and testified on the facts which he will testify to today.

SENATOR BAKER: Well, I just want it clearly understood that no promise by the US attorney is binding on this member of the committee.

BALDWIN ATTORNEY Mirdo: We realize that. We just-- Our statement (few words drowned out by announcer) that there is only one government, and a promise from the United States attorney would bar any prosecution by the government of the United States. That's our position, and that's why we read the statement into the record.

SENATOR BAKER: Do you understand my position?

BALDWIN ATTORNEY Mirdo: Yes, I do, Senator.

SENATOR ERVIN: Your position is that since the government promised that if you would cooperate, that they would make you a witness, and not a defendant, and-- that was the reason why you cooperated on the trial, and reason you're still cooperating.

BALDWIN ATTORNEY Mirdo: That's correct, Senator, and we also cooperated with other Senate committee members.

UNKNOWN SENATOR: I would like to defer at the present time, Senator.

SENATOR BAKER: Mr. Chairman, Senator Weicker has had an opportunity to interview with this witness on more than one occasion, he's from Connecticut, and I'd recommend, if we may, that we defer to him at the outset.

SENATOR ERVIN: I'll certainly agree with you that would be an advisable course.

SENATOR WEICKER: (Thanks Chairman, etc.) Mr. Baldwin, on May 1st, 1972, you were contacted by James McCord with regard to employment, is that correct?

BALDWIN: That's correct, Senator.

SENATOR WEICKER: When Mr. McCord called you, did he say how he had obtained your name?

BALDWIN: I don't recall if it was during the first conversation or the subsequent conversation the following day, but he told me that he had obtained my resume from the Society of Ex-FBI Agents in New York City.

SENATOR WEICKER: And did he describe the work that he wanted you to do?

BALDWIN: In the initial phone call, he didn't go into explicit details. He said it was a matter of urgency; that if it was possible to come to Washington where he would like to interview me, but he did basically inform me that it would involve security work for the Committee to Re-Elect the President. And-- At that particular time, in specific, some services with Mrs. Martha Mitchell, the wife of the Attorney General [sic--Mitchell was not still Attorney General].

SENATOR WEICKER: And did you go to Washington, then, on the next day, May the 2nd?

BALDWIN: No, I went to Washington that night. I, uh--

SENATOR WEICKER: That evening?

BALDWIN: That evening, yes, Senator.

SENATOR WEICKER: And you met with Mr. McCord on May the 2nd?

BALDWIN: I met with him the following morning, on May 2nd. That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now on May the 2nd, did you visit the Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: That's correct, I did.

SENATOR WEICKER: And as a result of that visit, were you employed by the Committee?

BALDWIN: Yes, I was.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would you describe to the committee, then, your visit of May the 2nd to the Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: Well, in the early morning hours, I did not know at that time, but Mr. Hoover had passed away that morning, and there was some confusion at the Committee to Re-Elect the Headquarters [sic--he says "headquarters" just as he would have said "President"]. What I had been told by Mr. McCord was the fact that Mrs. Mitchell would be departing that day for a trip to the midwest. For approximately two hours or so it was undetermined whether or not she would make the trip. After it was determined that she would, Mr. McCord then took me to the office of Mr. LaRue. He stated that I-- (Interruption to have Baldwin speak into the microphone) After it was determined that Mrs. Mitchell would make the trip, I was taken to the offices of Fred LaRue, who I was told would have the final say whether or not I was hired.

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you meet Mr. LaRue?

BALDWIN: That's correct. I had a very brief interview with Mr. LaRue that lasted approximately two or three minutes.

SENATOR WEICKER: And, was the decision to hire you made in your presence, at the moment you had met Mr. LaRue, or did you leave the room and were informed of the decision later?

BALDWIN: No, it was not made in my presence. Mr. LaRue asked if I would mind waiting outside of the office. When Mr. McCord joined me in the outer office, he said it's all set. "You're all set to go." I believe he might have even mentioned, "You're on board"--something like that.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would it be fair to describe, then, your hiring as having been accomplished by a combination of, initially, Jim McCord, with the final say-so by Mr. LaRue?

BALDWIN: Well, I was interviewed by Mr. McCord, but Mr. McCord, in the presence of Mr. LaRue, it was obvious that Mr. LaRue was making the decision.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, at the time that-- Or, after, rather, you were hired, on that particular day, were you given a weapon?

BALDWIN: That's correct. I was issued a .38 snub-nosed revolver; Smith & Wesson.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would you describe to the committee that particular incident? Was this on the same day, May the 2nd?

BALDWIN: That's correct. After we left Mr. LaRue's office. This occurred in the Security Office adjacent to the main reception room on the third floor of the Republican headquarters there on Pennsylvania Avenue. Mr. McCord went over to a file cabinet and removed the weapon either from the first or second drawer of the weapon--uh, of the file cabinet--and stated: "You will need this while you are with Mrs. Mitchell. You know how to use one of these?"

SENATOR WEICKER: So, in other words, it's your testimony to this committee that Mr. McCord gave you the .38.

BALDWIN: That's correct; he did.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, can you tell me what eventually happened to that weapon?

BALDWIN: I retained possession of that weapon through the trip. When I returned to Washington I had possession of that weapon. There was another trip scheduled on the Thursday of the week we returned. I believe we returned on May 8th, and I believe Mrs. Mitchell was scheduled to go out on another trip that Thursday. [NOTE: May 8 was a Monday; that Thursday is May 11.] I was told that the decision whether or not I would go with her hadn't been reached yet, but in all likeli I-- hood I [sic] would be going with her, to keep the weapon in my possession. I had to leave to go to-- back to Connecticut to get more clothing, so the weapon stayed with me back to Connecticut. When I returned from Connecticut, Mr. McCord advised me that Mr. LaRue would be going with Mrs. Mitchell, and he, uh, had other work for me to do, and at that time he said, uh-- I believe it was, uh, "You've still got the weapon?" I said yes. We went downstairs of the Roger Smith hotel, outside the barber shop--he took it.

SENATOR WEICKER: So the weapon was returned, then, to Mr. McCord.

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: All right, on the-- on that May the 2nd, were there any others that you were introduced to, any other individuals that you were introduced to, at the Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: Yes, Mr. LaRue's office is in a cubicle where I believe Mr. Magruder's office is, and I also believe Mr. Odle. As Mr. Magruder passed from his office, I was introduced to Mr. Magruder. I don't believe that I was formally introduced to Mr. Odle, but I believe Mr. McCord pointed him out, and Mr. McCord pointed out several other individuals. I was being introduced mainly to the security force that was present at the headquarters. I met some people in Mr. Mitchell's law offices. I was taken around to Mrs. Mitchell's office and introduced to different people. At each one of these offices I would be going with Mrs. Mitchell as her bodyguard; I was coming aboard. But, uh, several individuals were pointed out to me, but, uh--

SENATOR WEICKER: Was it indicated to you at that time as to the terms of your employment, specifically as to how you would be paid?

BALDWIN: That question came up originally, Senator, on the night Mr. McCord telephoned me, because on the resume that was submitted with the ex-agent's society, I had listed a general salary for a year. Mr. McCord-- I asked him about the salary. He told me that because of the fact-- I mentioned to him that there would be no sense in wasting your time or my time if the employment wasn't in the salary range that I was seeking. He did say there would be a discrepancy, that it would involve a matter of approximately $70 a day while I was with Mrs. Mitchell, and there would be a different rate when I was not working with Mrs. Mitchell. However, I was paid the same way at all times.

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you believe at that time that your employer was the Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: Absolutely.

SENATOR WEICKER: Do you have any documents in your possession which you believe to be supportive of that opinion?

BALDWIN: No, I have documents in my possession that are contradictory to that position. It was my understanding prior to the criminal trial that efforts were being made to disown me from the Committee, and as a matter of fact I have a--

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, I-- I-- I intend-- I'm just trying to keep this in logical sequence, Mr. Baldwin.

BALDWIN: No, I have all the application forms--

SENATOR WEICKER: Do you have in your possession a check from the Finance Committee to Re-Elect the Possession [sic--he says it just the way he would say "President]-- Rather, a Xerox copy of a check issued by the Finance Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: That's correct. I received a check and cashed it, and I did make a photostat of the check. That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would you go ahead and present that to the committee, please. [Rustling] Is there any other document that you have in your possession which, again, would indicate your employment by the Finance Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: I have what is titled a Schedule D--itemized expenditures, personal service loans, and transfers--and then underneath that it says Finance Committee to Re-Elect the President, and an itemized listing for a period of, I believe it's August 1st '72 through August 9th '72, and on that my name appears.

SENATOR WEICKER: All right, and what is the amount listed beside your name?

BALDWIN: It's listed $429.84.

SENATOR WEICKER: For travel expense?

BALDWIN: That's what the purpose of the expenditure-- Under the column "Purpose of Expenditure," that's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: What travel expense do you believe that to refer to?

BALDWIN: Well, I was told this was reimbursement for travel expense incurred while with Mrs. Mitchell. Uh, this figure coincides with a figure that I submitted regarding her expenditures spent on the trip.

SENATOR WEICKER: So in other words, you believe this figure, listed on Schedule D, and also set forth on the check from the Finance Committee to Re-Elect the President, as coinciding with a voucher which you submitted for travel expenses attendant to your trip with Mrs. Mitchell. Is that correct?

BALDWIN: That's correct. A combination of her expenses and my expenses.

SENATOR WEICKER: Has the committee-- Has the committee-- Have you presented your copy of Schedule D to the committee? [shuffling] And I would appreciate it, Mr. Chairman, if both these items would be--

SENATOR ERVIN: Let the record show that the two photostat-- Xerox copies of, uh, checks are made exhibits and appropriately numbered, whatever the numbers would be in sequence of previous exhibits.

SENATOR WEICKER: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Now: as your first assignment, did you make a trip to Detroit and Westchester County as a bodyguard for Mrs. Mitchell?

BALDWIN: That's correct. The, uh--

SENATOR WEICKER: And did you return from that trip on May the 8th?

BALDWIN: That's correct. We did.

SENATOR WEICKER: On your return on May the 8th, or at any other time, were you informed by anyone that you had been fired by the Committee to Re-Elect?

BALDWIN: I've never received any official notification from anyone up to this date.

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you, at any time, return to the office of Mr. LaRue, and receive from him notification of termination of employment?

BALDWIN: No, I did not.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now then, to move to May the 12th, Mr. Baldwin: did you return to Connecticut at that time-- or rather, did you return to Connecticut after the 8th--

BALDWIN: I returned approximately the 9th to Connecticut--

SENATOR WEICKER: --and come back to Washington on May the 12th?

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Could you briefly describe your assignments between May 12th and May the 23rd, when you again returned to Connecticut.

BALDWIN: On my return to Washington I was advised that Mr. LaRue would be going with Mrs. Mitchell on the trip to Nebraska, and that Mr. McCord wanted me to perform other functions in the Washington, D.C. area, which would cover surveillance activity. At that time, I don't believe that there was any specific organization, but on a day-to-day basis he would give me instructions where to go and what type of activity to perform.

SENATOR WEICKER: Where were you housed at this time?

BALDWIN: On my return back I stayed at the, I believe it's the Roger Smith, a block up from the Committee headquarters. Mr. McCord advised me that he would like me, then, to move to the Howard Johnson, where he had obtained a room [room 419], and that to cut down expenses I should stay at the Howard Johnson.

SENATOR WEICKER: I don't want to have us get ahead of ourselves here. On May the 12th, on May the 12th you were still at the Roger Smith hotel, is that correct?

BALDWIN: On my return from Connecticut, I stayed at the Roger Smith; that's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: And Mr. McCord would come to the Roger Smith hotel and give you instructions.

BALDWIN: We-- That's correct. We had a breakfast meeting at--

SENATOR WEICKER: All right. And what did those instructions consist of?

BALDWIN: Well, the first instructions were to move to the Howard Johnson, and from there he would brief me on the activities that were upcoming. There was a planned news conference on that Friday with-- Rene Davis was due in town, and he wanted me to go to the news conference and obtain any information I could.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would it be--in order that we don't take overly much of the time of the committee--would it be fair to state that during the period between May the 12th and May the 23rd you were principally engaged in surveillance activities of various activities, organizations, and occurrances in the Washington, D.C. area.

BALDWIN: That's correct, Senator.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, at any time were you sent to the Capitol area to conduct these surveillances?

BALDWIN: I believe it was the day after Governor Wallace was shot that I was assigned to go to the Capitol rotunda where there was planned sit-ins.

SENATOR WEICKER: During this period of time, were you sent to areas outside the offices of various senators and congressmen to observe persons in those areas?

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, Mr. Baldwin, would you try to the best of your ability to recall these areas, or the specific offices, to which you went in order to observe persons in those areas.

BALDWIN: I'm going to do some great injustice to some of the representatives, I'm sure, with their names. But I know I went to Senator Kennedy's office--

SENATOR WEICKER: Why did you go to Senator Kennedy's office?

BALDWIN: Well, on one particular day, at the Capitol, a large number of demonstrators had been receiving Senate passes to the gallery area. This was also the day that the three astronauts appeared, and the information circulating amongst the different security officers up there was the passes were being issued by, I believe it was Senator Kennedy's office, and-- I'm not sure. It might have been Senator Gravell's (spelling?) office at that time. On one of my phone calls to Mr. McCord I advised him of this, and he advised me to go to the Senator's office to determine what groups were in the area, how the passes were being handed out or distributed, who was doing it, obtain any literature that was being handed out, and basically try to determine what groups were in the area of the senator's office. That's how that particular incident--

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, you mentioned Senator Kennedy's office, and possibly also Senator Bell's [sic] office. Are there any other representatives or senators whose offices you recall going to in order to observe persons moving about those areas.

BALDWIN: Representatives from New York, I believe. It was Bella Abzug and--is my pronunciation correct on that? And Representative Chisholm (sp?) and-- I believe Mandell (sp?)--

SENATOR WEICKER: At any time--

BALDWIN: Gravell I menti--

SENATOR WEICKER: At any time did you visit the office of Senator Muskie?

BALDWIN: To the best of my recollection I don't recall being in the area of Senator Muskie--

SENATOR WEICKER: Senator McGovern?

BALDWIN: No. Those names I would have recalled.

SENATOR WEICKER: Senator Javitz?

BALDWIN: That's correct, because it's Mr. Javitz on the door.

SENATOR WEICKER: Senator Proxmire?

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Congressman Koch?

BALDWIN: I believe-- If he's the gentleman from New York, I believe that possibly is one of the other gentlemen from New York.

SENATOR WEICKER: All right, aside from that type of surveillance, did you also engage in the surveillance of demonstrations in the capitol area?

BALDWIN: I participated in the demonstrations in the capitol, that's correct. I'm sorry, my attorney just reminded me: there was also Representative McClowsky (sp?).

SENATOR WEICKER: And Representative McClowsky's office is another one which you--

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: You've already mentioned a Rene Davis news conference, the surveillance on the Hill. At any time did you leave Capitol Hill to engage in surveillance activities?

BALDWIN: There was a planned demonstration at the air force base the day that the President was leaving for Moscow, on a Saturday morning.

SENATOR WEICKER: And who instructed you to go to Andrews Air Force base?

BALDWIN: Mr. McCord.

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you receive, in other words, your instruction from Mr. McCord as to your surveillance activities, where they should take place?

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, at the time of your return on May the 12th, you've already stated that you moved to room 419 at the Howard Johnson's on Virginia Avenue, across from the Watergate. In whose name was the room registered?

BALDWIN: I didn't know that-- McCord had just advised me that he had a room there, but subsequently when I went downstairs, um, to ask for mail, I was told that it was under the name of McCord Associates. And I gave the desk clerk my name, and asked if any mail was received there, to put it into McCord Associates room.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, there've been reports that in fact you were not employed by the Committee to Re-Elect the President. And you've stated here already that you believe you were employed by the Committee to Re-Elect the President. Did any event during this period of time serve to confirm that belief in your mind?

BALDWIN: Well, I was instructed that if any time I was stopped by any government agency or law enforcement body regarding the weapon, or regarding my presence in a particular area, that I was to do two things: number one, advise them that I worked for the Committee to Re-Elect the President, that I was in the security office at that-- of that department, and if that didn't work to go on and then say that I was working for the former Attorney General, John Mitchell, and then as a last resort I had Mr. McCord's business card that said "James McCord, Director of Security, Committee to Re-Elect the President," and a telephone number. I was to give the person that card, and that they would call and verify. So on at least three or four occasions, that process had to be followed, where I had to identify myself.

SENATOR WEICKER: When you say three or four occasions, can you state to the committee several of those occasions when you had to use Mr. McCord's card and telephone number as a means of identifying yourself.

BALDWIN: Well, I had no authority to carry the weapon, so when I flew home to Connecticut I would declare the weapon, and I was flying Allegheny Airlines, so that every time I would fly I would have to declare the weapon. And they would verify the fact; they would call right in front of me. The ticket agent and the manager would come out, usually, of the office. They would make a call, and they would say, "No problem." They would hand the gun back to me. Another time I was questioned by the FBI Liaison Officer on the Capitol Hill. He verified it. And then the day at Andrews Air Force base, I was stopped by the Air Security Police, and they had to call down to the Committee headquarters and verify it. On all occasions I was told everythings' okay, all my items of identification were returned to me, and I was on my way.

SENATOR WEICKER: Were you given any sort of an identification pin as belonging to the Committee to Re-Elect the President?

BALDWIN: Yes I was. I was issued a lapel pin that was red and white in appearance, and had an eagle on it. This pin allowed me--

SENATOR WEICKER: Where is that pin now?

BALDWIN: That was turned over to the United States attorney at-- prior to the criminal trial.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, Mr. Baldwin, to keep on giving the continuity here--you interrupt me or state if I'm incorrect--that you returned to Connecticut on May the 23rd and came back to Washington on May the 26th. Is that correct?

BALDWIN: That's correct; Friday.

SENATOR WEICKER: And you returned to room 419 at the Howard Johnson's on May 26th. Now, when you entered room 419 on May the 26th, what did you see?

BALDWIN: When I entered the room, there was numerous items of electronic equipment in the room. When I entered the room it was approximately 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon--I believe about that hour. Mr. McCord was operating one of the receiver units. At that time I didn't know what it was, he explained it.

SENATOR WEICKER: In other words this is the first time that you had seen electronic equipment in room 419 of the Howard Johnson's?

BALDWIN: This particular piece of equipment that he was working on, that was the first time I had seen that. On the couch there was a piece of electronic equipment which was contained in a briefcase that had been described to me that I had previously seen at the Committee to Re-Elect the President headquarters. This was called a debugger and a monitoring unit.

SENATOR WEICKER: In other words you had seen a portion of the equipment.

BALDWIN: A portion I had seen previous at--

SENATOR WEICKER: At the Committee to Re-Elect the President--

BALDWIN: That's correct. But the equipment that he was working on when I entered the room, I had never seen that before.

SENATOR WEICKER: And as you entered the room, Mr. McCord was in the process of what--experimenting with this equipment? What did he indicate to you at the time that you entered the room?

BALDWIN: He was tuning the equipment. The unit was operating and he was working the tuning dials. There's several tuning dials on the piece of equipment--

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you have any questions of him as to exactly what was going on at that time?

BALDWIN: No. I'd just driven approximately six hours, and he said, "As soon as you get unpacked and relaxed I'll explain this," and I said, "All right. I'll take a shower and shave and join you."

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, Mr. Baldwin, is there a sequence of events leading up to a visit by other persons to the room that afternoon.

BALDWIN: Well, I was told that some other individuals would be coming to the room that were part, uh, part of the security force, and that in view of their position, they would be introduced under aliases to me. And that I would also be introduced-- And Mr. McCord said, "Don't take this personal; it's no reflection on you, but because of the nature of work we're involved in, I'm going to use an alias for you, and I'll use an alias for them. I'll be introducing them as--"

SENATOR WEICKER: What was the alias that he gave to you?

BALDWIN: He asked me to use the alias of Bill Johnson, the alias I had used calling in on my reports while on the surveillance operation. It was the same alias I had used.

SENATOR WEICKER: All right, then would you like-- Would you continue your narrative to the committee as to what happened that afternoon.

BALDWIN: Are you asking regarding the introduction to the individuals that came to the room, Senator?

SENATOR WEICKER: Well, I gather from what you've already told the committee that you were told that there was to be a visit by certain individuals connected with the security operation. Is that correct?

BALDWIN: That's correct. Well, they came to--

SENATOR WEICKER: And that you were given an alias.

BALDWIN: That's correct. Two individuals came to the room, and when they entered the room, Mr. McCord turned to me, and at this point he introduced-- He said, "Al, I'd like you to meet--" And I believe he said, uh, "Ed and--" And he got all confused, because he hadn't used the alias that--

SENATOR WEICKER: He hadn't used the alias which--

BALDWIN: That's correct--

SENATOR WEICKER: --you were supposed to use, in your conversation--

BALDWIN: That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: --with these individuals.

BALDWIN: And he was introducing them-- I don't know if he said at that point "Ed and Gordon" or how he did it, but he had to retrack. And then he tried to introduce me under my alias, and he couldn't remember it, and then he just introduced us under first names.

SENATOR WEICKER: Right. Now, subsequently, have you identified who those two men were that came into the room?

BALDWIN: That's correct. In the FBI photographic display they were identified as Mr. Liddy and Mr. Hunt.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now that same evening, the same evening of May the 26th, was there a trip to McGovern headquarters?

BALDWIN: That's correct. There was.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would you describe to the committee that trip, and the evening's activities at McGovern's headquarters.

BALDWIN: Well, the purpose of my returning from Connecticut was to work that weekend. Mr. McCord advised me that there be, uh-- That we would have to work that weekend. I didn't know we were going to McGovern headquarters until we arrived at the scene. Prior to arriving there we stopped--he had to buy some batteries. He sent me in to buy them. And then we proceeded to McGovern headquarters and as we drove by the headquarters, he pointed to a building, and he said, "This is what we're interested in. We've got to meet some other people here." And then he proceeded to explain that, uh, "We have to find our individual. One of our men is here. He'll be in a yellow Volkswagon. Keep your eyes open for the Volkswagon--for the man sitting in it." I think he even mentioned "boy;" I don't think he said "man." "There's a boy in the Volkswagon." He said, "We have one of our-- One of our people is inside the headquarters." The problem was there was an individual standing outside of McGovern's headquarters, which was a second-story headquarters above, I believe, they were stores. There was a chain across them. And this individual was there. This was late in the evening, approximately 1:00 or 2:00 o'clock in the early morning hours, and Mr. McCord was quite upset at the fact this individual was standing in front of the store. He had no business being there according to Mr. McCord. Or he shouldn't have been there.

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you meet any other individuals at that particular-- at that particular address?

BALDWIN: That's correct. Mr. McCord had been in communication over a walkie-talkie unit with some other individuals. And at one point as we proceeded on the same street that the McGovern headquarters is located on, we stopped adjacent to a light-colored car. An individual alighted from the car and came into the front seat of Mr. McCord's car. I slid over so I was between Mr. McCord and this individual.

SENATOR WEICKER: Can you tell me who that individual was?

BALDWIN: It was Mr. Liddy.

SENATOR WEICKER: And did you succeed in getting into the McGovern headquarters on that evening.

BALDWIN: No. We-- They drove around. Mr. McCord and Mr. Liddy did all the talking, and they drove around--I don't know the exact length of time, but it was over a half hour. As a matter of fact, we drove up the alleyway adjacent to the building. They discussed a problem of lights. There was a discussion of whether or not their man was still inside. There were several discussions, and finally Mr. Liddy said, "We'll abort the mission." That was his terms.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, Mr. Baldwin, what was your primary job, then, during the first two weeks of June? We've now moved from the end of May to June--what was your primary job during that period of time?

BALDWIN: I was instructed to monitor all telephone conversations that were being received over these units that were in the Howard Johnson room, and to make a log of all units.

SENATOR WEICKER: With reference to overheard telephone conversations, and excluding anything to do with personal lives of those who were overheard, can you tell the committee the content of any conversations of a political nature?

SENATOR ERVIN: Ah, Senator, I'm afraid we made a mistake when we passed the Omnibus Crime Act, but it may be illegal to spring out anything about the contents. I think maybe we were very foolish when Congress passed that law, but I believe it is the law.

BALDWIN: Well, I would decline to answer that respectfully, Senator, based on 18, Section 2515--Prohibition of Use of Evidence of Intercepted Wire or Oral Communications--which specifically states under this federal statute that if I divulge those contents, I'm subject to possible prosecution.

SENATOR ERVIN: On reflection, I think we were very foolish when we passed a law like that, but we apparently did.

SENATOR WEICKER: About how many calls did you monitor?

BALDWIN: Approximately 200.

SENATOR WEICKER: Will you describe how you recorded these.

BALDWIN: Initially, the first day, it was on a yellow legal pad. Nr. McCord took the actual longhand copy that I had made. Subsequently he returned to the room--I believe it was on Labor Day, Monday [May 29, 1972]--with a [sic] electric typewriter. He asked me to transcribe my notes into typewritten form, making up duplicate copies: an original and an onionskin. And that's what I proceeded to do.

SENATOR WEICKER: And then who would you-- Who would you transmit those logs to? Mr. McCord?

BALDWIN: Mr. McCord received both the original and onionskin. That's correct.

SENATOR WEICKER: At any other time-- At any time, did you hand those logs to an individual other than Mr. McCord?

BALDWIN: The one incident where I was telephoned from Miami and told to deliver the logs to the Republican headquarters--the Committee to Re-Elect the President on Pennsylvania Avenue, which I did.

SENATOR WEICKER: Now, during these first two weeks in June, did you engage in any other activities. Specifically, did you go over to the Democratic National Committee?

BALDWIN: That's correct. I did.

SENATOR WEICKER: Would you describe that particular incident.

BALDWIN: Mr. McCord appeared in the room on Monday--I believe it was the 12th of June--and advised me that-- Well, he furnished me a $100 bill, and said, uh, "You're really gonna have a ball this week. You're gonna go over to the restaurant. I want you to hang around in the cocktail lounge, the restaurant, and do visual surveillances of anybody from the Democratic headquarters. I'd also like you to--" He gave me a pretext to take a tour of the Democratic headquarters. I didn't agree with his approach and I asked him if I could do it a different way. I followed that way and I was given a tour of the Democratic headquarters that day.

SENATOR WEICKER: Prior to the weekend of June 16th, did Mr. McCord discuss the plans for the rest of that weekend and any subsequent plans. In other words, what was the weekend-- What was the schedule of events for the weekend of June the 16th?

BALDWIN: Well, after the tour, Senator, of the McGovern [sic] headquarters, it was obvious that Mr. Lawrence O'Brien was not in the Washington area, and that he had been in Miami, and had been working in Miami, so now--

SENATOR WEICKER: May I ask you this question, Mr. Baldwin: did you mean the McGovern headquarters or the Democratic National Committee--?

BALDWIN: I'm talking about the Democratic National Committee headquarters. After my tour there, part of the information I received was the fact that Mr. O'Brien had not been in Washington for the past month or so or longer. He had been in Miami, and Mr. McCord was quite pleased to hear this. And it appeared to me that it called for a rescheduling of the timetable, because he got quite upset to the fact that I would have to-- He would try to make some arrangements for me to go to Miami-- Uh, he had already discussed with me the fact that I would be appearing at-- I would be going to both the Democratic and the Republican conventions, but in view of this information that Mr. O'Brien was in Miami, uh, this seemed to change his timetable and he-- For the rest of that week-- That week, at several different points he told me he would like to get me--get my identification sewed up--and get me down to Miami. He had to confer with some other individuals regarding this, and as soon as it was approved I would be going to Miami.

SENATOR WEICKER: All right. Now, on June the 16th, at around 4:30 p.m., did Mr. McCord appear in the room at the Watergate [sic]?

BALDWIN: Yes, he--

SENATOR WEICKER: I beg your pardon: I mean the room at the Howard Johnson's.

BALDWIN: Yes, he appeared at the Howard Johnson's.

SENATOR WEICKER: And what were your activities, and his activities, between 4:30 in the afternoon and 10:00 in the evening?

BALDWIN: Do you want every detail, Senator?

SENATOR WEICKER: I'd like you to tell, in a broad narrative sense, the committee as to what--

BALDWIN: Well, he gave me several instructions to buy some items for him, which I did. I tried to obtain some batteries--some regular flashlight batteries--and some what he called speaker wire, which is regular wire-- I couldn't get the wire, so subsequently he had to-- He left the room, and went out. Part of the activities: he tested some type of a device on the phone. He tested a free-standing device next to the television, a, uh-- It had on it "Fire Alarm Unit," I believe. So, basica-- And he had me soldering some batteries together. During the course of that time he made a phone call, I believe received one or two phone calls in the room. It was that general activity up to the point where he decided, uh-- The difficulty was there was a gentleman working in the Democratic National Committee--

SENATOR WEICKER: Did you know at that time that he had planned to go into Democratic National--

BALDWIN: No, not until, uh--

SENATOR WEICKER: --Committee headquarters?

BALDWIN: --not until he was on the phone at one point and he said, "We still can't go over there because there's somebody working," and then I looked across and there was somebody working in the Democratic headquarters. He then told me, um, "We don't know whether we're going to abort." Approximately a half hour or so later, this individual left, and the decision was made, uh, to go across the street.

SENATOR WEICKER: At 10:00 p.m., then, is it your contention that Mr. McCord left the room?

BALDWIN: I don't know the exact time-- Oh, no, no: he left the room later than 10:00 p.m. You mean to go to the Democratic headquarters?


BALDWIN: He left at one point to buy some equipment at a radio discount store or some place, and he returned. Then subsequent to that, he again went acro-- Then he left to go to the, uh-- Across the street to the Democratic National Committee.

Edited by Ashton Gray
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