'Onion Field' Ex-Con Arrested on Drug Charge

Prosecutors asked a judge to revoke parole for a man who served 19 years in prison for the 1963 "Onion Field" (search) case in which two police officers were kidnapped and one was murdered.

Jimmy Lee Smith (search), 74, had been on parole in a drug case when he was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of possessing heroin, Sandi Gibbons, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney's office, said Thursday.

A hearing was set for June 27.

Smith was released from prison in 1982. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail and three years probation after he pleaded guilty in May 2004 to possession of a controlled substance, Gibbons said.

Smith and Gregory Powell (search) were convicted of kidnapping two Los Angeles police officers in 1963 during a routine traffic stop and killing one of them in an onion field near Bakersfield. The other officer managed to flee.

The case was the subject of Joseph Wambaugh's best-selling novel "The Onion Field," (search) which was turned into a movie.

Smith and Powell were sentenced to death but their sentences were commuted to life in prison in 1972 when the California Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty constituted cruel and unusual punishment.