1975 February 21

A.G. Mitchell, Nixon Aides Haldeman, Ehrlichman Sentenced to Prison for Watergate Crimes


Attorney General John Mitchell and President Richard Nixon’s two top aides, H. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, were sentenced to prison on this day for crimes related to the Watergate scandal. All three were convicted of conspiracy to obstruct justice in the investigation of the burglary of the Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate office complex on June 17, 1972. Their illegal actions included conspiring to pay “hush money” to the men who conducted the burglary. The sentences ranged from 2 to 8 years.

The Watergate burglary touched off a national scandal that gripped the nation for 15 months from the day of the original Watergate burglary to President Richard Nixon’s resignation. The burglary set in motions investigations that uncovered other abuses of power by President Nixon and several members of his administration. These included the famous “enemies” list of critics of the administration who were targeted for retaliation (August 16, 1971), and the White House “Plumbers” unit that burglarized the office of Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist on September 9, 1971. Nixon was impeached by the House of Representatives in August 1974, and he resigned in disgrace on August 9, 1974.

Read: Stanley Kutler, The Wars of Watergate: The Last Crisis of Richard Nixon (1990)

Learn more at Watergate.info (including a timeline of events): http://watergate.info/

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