The Watergate break in occurred in June, 1972, as we discussed last month, but it was in late July, 1972 that two newspaper reporters descended on Miami. The New York Times and The Washington Post both sent reporters south to get the story.
Walter Rugaber, One of the Times, White House reporters came to Miami in early July to begin putting the pieces together on Watgerate.
On July 25, 1972 Rugaber reported that Watergate burglar, Bernard Barker’s Miami phone had called CREEP (Nixon Campaign) offices more than a dozen times in the lead up to the burglary. The records had come from Dade County State Attorney, Richard Gerstein, a Democrat. Gerstein’s office had gathered Barker’s phone records, with Rugaber then piecing together that CREEP had been on the records.
Following this revelation, Carl Bernstein of The Washington Post boarded a plane and headed to Miami. As All The President’s Men depicts, Bernstein saw The Times report from Rugaber about checks – posted from Mexico City. Bernstein doggedly remained in Miami – a decision his editors made, particularly Barry Sussman (who just passed away last month), until he traced a check to a bank in Boca Raton from one, Kenneth H. Dahlberg. The rest as we say, is history.