Hearst’s bail was revoked in May 1979 when appeals failed and the Supreme Court declined to hear her case. The prison took no special security measures for Hearst’s safety until she found a dead rat on her bunk the day William and Emily Harris were arraigned for her abduction. The Harrises were convicted on a simple kidnapping charge (as opposed to the more serious kidnapping for ransom or kidnapping with bodily injury); they were released after serving a total eight years each. Although there were some articles in legal journals about the issues in the case the definition of duress in law remained unchanged.
A Patty Hearst Signed Letter, July 5, 1979 is in reference to the tough times in jail. When she found a dead rat on her bunk she was afraid of here safety in jail thanking Mr. Dale Perry concerned about her welfare and recent ruling of the court.