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By Donald P. Baker
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 14, 1992 ; Page B07

RICHMOND, NOV. 13 -- Attorney General Mary Sue Terry may think she can cruise unopposed to the Democratic nomination for governor next year, but Samuel Howard Sloan has decided to make some waves for her.

Sloan, 48, announced this week that he will challenge Terry out of frustration over a custody dispute that landed him in jail.

"So far," wrote Sloan in a letter from his cell at the Lynchburg City Jail, "I have received zero campaign contributions and I have spent 29 cents on my campaign"- the price of the stamp on the letter.

Sloan was extradited from California last month to face three felony charges that Lynchburg Commonwealth Attorney William Petty said involve a child custody dispute.

In a telephone interview, Sloan said that he intends to conduct his campaign "from my jail cell, Number 12." He said that he has promised "a full pardon to those 32 prisoners in my jail cell, which is a cell designed for 18."

Sloan's resume says that he is a native of Richmond, graduated from E.C. Glass High School in Lynchburg, where he was "a winner in the Virginia Science Talent Search", and "scored 800 on his math college boards."

While attending the University of California at Berkeley, he "became one of the most prominent leaders of the Free Speech Movement" and later he became an Afghan Freedom Fighter. None of this could be confirmed.

A friend of Sloan's, James Feinstein of San Francisco, said Sloan is "a genius with an IQ of 200 or so" who has written several books, including one on Chinese chess.

Sloan, also known as M. Ismail Sloan, said another of his books is "How to Take Over an American Public Company", which he said he wrote after working on Wall Street. That could not be confirmed either.

In a campaign pledge that sounds remarkably like that on which Gov. L. Douglas Wilder was elected in 1989, Sloan promises "to balance the state budget while advancing the rights of the downtrodden minorities."

Sloan said he already has "the support of not only my fellow prisoners, but also my jailers" because "their pay has been frozen for three years."

© Copyright 1992 The Washington Post Company

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