Documents regarding Kennedy assassination found in Dallas

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Monday, February 18, 2008

Jack Ruby, who the transcript portrays as having talked with Lee Harvey Oswald prior to Kennedy's assassination.

At a press conference today, Dallas County district attorney Craig Watkins presented several documents and items relating to the 1963 assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy. They were discovered over a year ago in a safe at the county courthouse.

Among these items is a two-page transcript of a conversation alleged to have taken place between Lee Harvey Oswald, who was arrested for assassinating Kennedy, and Jack Ruby, who shot and killed Oswald two days after he was arrested. If the conversation was found to be real, it would provide support for many conspiracy theories regarding the assassination. "It will open up the debate as to whether or not there was a conspiracy to assassinate the president," Watkins said.

The transcript suggests that Oswald and Ruby met at Ruby's nightclub on October 4, 1963, where they discussed a plan to "get rid of" then-Attorney General Robert Kennedy by shooting his brother, the President. "I can still do it, all I need is my rifle and a tall building," Oswald purportedly said. "But it will take time, maybe six months to find the right place..." Ruby says the money for the operation will be coming from the Mafia, but when Oswald asks Ruby if he is with the Mafia, Ruby replies with, "You're asking too many questions."

Some have dismissed the transcript as fake, saying it reads more like a screenplay than an actual conversation. "It's not real. Crooks don't talk like that," said Terri Moore, top assistant to Craig Watkins. Also found in the safe were letters written by former District Attorney Henry Wade regarding a movie he was working on, titled Countdown in Dallas. It is unclear how much work was done on the film, although a movie deal signed by Wade was among the documents found.

"The fact that it's sitting in Henry Wade's file, and he didn't do anything, indicates he thought it wasn't worth anything," said Gary Mack, curator of the Sixth Floor Museum. "He probably kept it because it was funny. It's hilarious. It's like a bad B movie." Mack says the conversation could not have taken place, as Oswald is believed to have been in Irving the night of October 4.

Although Craig Watkins believes the transcript is likely a fake, he said he could not immediately dismiss it as such. Even if the document is bogus, he says, he had always questioned the official explanation for Kennedy's death. "You know me: I'm always a conspiracy theorist," Watkins said. "It was too simple of an explanation. I don't see that."

The other items found in the safe, including Jack Ruby's brass knuckles, a leather gun holster, documents from Ruby's trial, and clothes belonging to Ruby and Oswald, are believed to be genuine. After all the items have been scanned, Watkins plans to donate them to a third party, so that they can be viewed by the public. "Our motto has always been that everything is open. We have nothing to hide. So we’re making public everything that we have found in the safe," Watkins said.


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