Leslie Brennan's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Brennan was standing across the street from the depository)
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, as the parade came by, I watched it from a distance of Elm and Main Street, as it came on to Houston and turned the corner at Houston and Elm, going down the incline towards the railroad underpass. And after the President had passed my position, I really couldn't say how many feet or how far, a short distance I would say, I heard this crack that I positively thought was a backfire.
Mr. BELIN - You thought it was backfire?
Mr. BRENNAN - Of a motorcycle.
Mr. BELIN - Then what did you observe or hear?
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, then something, just right after this explosion, made me think that it was a firecracker being thrown from the Texas Book Store. And I glanced up. And this man that I saw previous was aiming for his last shot.
Mr. BELIN - This man you saw previous? Which man are you talking about now?
Mr. BRENNAN - The man in the sixth story window.
Mr. BELIN - Would you describe just exactly what you saw when you saw him this last time?
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, as it appeared to me he was standing up and resting against the left window sill, with gun shouldered to his right shoulder, holding the gun with his left hand and taking positive aim and fired his last shot. As I calculate a couple of seconds. He drew the gun back from the window as though he was drawing it back to his side and maybe paused for another second as though to assure hisself that he hit his mark, and then he disappeared.
And, at the same moment, I was diving off of that firewall and to the right for bullet protection of this stone wall that is a little higher on the Houston side.
Mr. BELIN - Well, let me ask you. What kind of a gun did you see in that window?
Mr. BRENNAN - I am not an expert on guns. It was, as I could observe, some type of a high-powered rifle.
Mr. BELIN - Could you tell whether or not it had any kind of a scope on it?
Mr. BRENNAN - I did not observe a scope.
Mr. BELIN - Could you tell whether or not it had one? Do you know whether it did or not, or could you observe that it definitely did or definitely did not, or don't you know?
Mr. BRENNAN - I do not know if it had a scope or not.
Mr. BELIN - I believe you said you thought the man was standing. What do you believe was the position of the people on the fifth floor that you saw--standing or sitting?
Mr. BRENNAN - I thought they were standing with their elbows on the window sill leaning out.
Mr. BELIN - At the time you saw this man on the sixth floor, how much of the man could you see?
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, I could see at one time he came to the window and he sat sideways on the window sill. That was previous to President Kennedy getting there. And I could see practically his whole body, from his hips up. But at the time that he was firing the gun, a possibility from his belt up.
Mr. BELIN - How much of the gun do you believe that you saw?
Mr. BRENNAN - I calculate 70 to 85 percent of the gun.
Mr. BELIN - Do you know what direction the gun was pointing.
Mr. BRENNAN - Yes.
Mr. BELIN - And what direction was the gun pointing when you saw it?
Mr. BRENNAN - At somewhat 30 degrees downward and west by south.
Mr. BELIN - Do you know down what street it was pointing?
Mr. BRENNAN - Yes. Down Elm Street toward the railroad underpasses.
Mr. BELIN - Now, up to the time of the shots, did you observe anything else that you have not told us about here that you can think of right now?
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, not of any importance. I don't remember anything else except--
Mr. BELIN - Let me ask you this. How many shots did you hear?
Mr. BRENNAN - Positively two. I do not recall a second shot--
Mr. BELIN - By a second shot, you mean a middle shot between the time you heard the first noise and the last noise?
Mr. BRENNAN - Yes; that is right. I don't know what made me think that there was firecrackers throwed out of the Book Store unless I did hear the second shot, because I positively thought the first shot was a backfire, and subconsciously must have heard a second shot, but I do not recall it. I could not swear to it.
Mr. BELIN - Could you describe the man you saw in the window on the sixth floor?
Mr. BRENNAN - To my best description, a man in his early thirties, fair complexion, slender but neat, neat slender, possibly 5-foot 10.
Mr. BELIN - About what weight?
Mr. BRENNAN - Oh, at--I calculated, I think, from 160 to 170 pounds.
Mr. BELIN - A white man?
Mr. BRENNAN - Yes.
Mr. BELIN - Do you remember what kind of clothes he was wearing?
Mr. BRENNAN - Light colored clothes, more of a khaki color.
Mr. BELIN - Do you remember the color of his hair?
Mr. BRENNAN - No.
Mr. BELIN - Now, I believe you said that after the last shot you jumped off this masonry structure on which you were sitting. Why did you jump off?
Mr. BRENNAN - Well, it occurred to me that there might be more than one person, that it was a plot which could mean several people, and I knew beyond reasonable doubt that there were going to be bullets flying from every direction.
Mr. BELIN - Then what did you do after that? Or what did you see?
Mr. BRENNAN - I observed to my thinking that they were directing their search towards the west side of the building and down Houston Street.
Mr. BELIN - When you say "they", who do you mean?
Mr. BRENNAN - Law-enforcement officers.
Mr. BELIN - By the west side of the building, you mean towards the underpass or railroad tracks?
Mr. BRENNAN - Yes.
Mr. BELIN - After you saw that, what did you do?
Mr. BRENNAN - I knew I had to get to someone quick to tell them where the man was. So I ran or I walked--there is a possibility I ran, because I have a habit of, when something has to be done in a hurry, I run. And there was one
officer standing at the corner of the Texas Book Store on the street. It didn't seem to me he was going in any direction. He was standing still.
Mr. BELIN - What did you do or what did you say to him?
Mr. BRENNAN - I asked him to get me someone in charge, a Secret Service man or an FBI. That it appeared to me that they were searching in the wrong direction for the man that did the shooting.
And he was definitely in the building on the sixth floor.
I did not say on the sixth floor. Correction there.
I believe I identified the window as one window from the top.
Posner - Nothing in Brennan's testimony is inconsistent with Posner's theory, and he certainly puts a man in the depository firing a rifle.
Harris - Brennan's testimony is also consistent with Harris's theory. Since he doesn't really identify the location of the sound that could have possibly been the second shot, it is possible that was a shot from the Dal-Tex building.
S. M. Holland's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Holland was standing on the triple overpass)
Mr. STERN - Now, what did you observe from that point on, Mr. HOLLAND?
Mr. HOLLAND - Well, I observed the motorcade when it turned off of Main Street onto Houston Street and back on Elm Street. There was two young ladies right across from this sign, which would be, I judge would say they were standing about here [indicating].
Mr. STERN - Put No. 4 there, please. Fine.
Mr. HOLLAND - And the motorcade was coming down in this fashion, and the President was waving to the people on this side [indicating].
Mr. STERN - That is the north side of Elm Street?
Mr. HOLLAND - Yes; On the north side.
Mr. STERN - All right.
Mr. HOLLAND - And she was looking in this direction [indicating].
Mr. STERN - "She," is Mrs. Kennedy?
Mr. HOLLAND - His wife. And about that time---
Mr. STERN - Was looking in a southern direction?
Mr. HOLLAND - In the southern direction.
Mr. STERN - South side of Elm Street?
Mr. HOLLAND - And about that time he went over like that [indicating], and put his hand up, and she was still looking off, as well as I could tell.
Mr. STERN - Now, when you say, "he went like that," you leaned forward and raised your right hand?
Mr. HOLLAND - Pulled forward and hand just stood like that momentarily.
Mr. STERN - With his right hand?
Mr. HOLLAND - His right hand; and that was the first report that I heard.
Mr. STERN - What did it sound like?
Mr. HOLLAND - Well, it was pretty loud, and naturally, underneath this underpass here it would be a little louder, the concussion from underneath it, it was a pretty loud report, and the car traveled a few yards, and Governor Connally turned in this fashion, like that [indicating] with his hand out, and another report.
Mr. STERN - With his right hand out?
Mr. HOLLAND - Turning to his right.
Mr. STERN - To his right?
Mr. HOLLAND - And another report rang out and he slumped down in his seat, and about that time Mrs. Kennedy was looking at these girls over here [indicating]. The girls standing---now one of them was taking a picture, and the other one was just standing there, and she turned around facing the President and Governor Connally. In other words, she realized what was happening, I guess.
Now, I mean, that was apparently that---she turned back around, and by the time she could get turned around he was hit again along in---I'd say along in here [indicating].
Mr. STERN - How do you know that? Did you observe that?
Mr. HOLLAND - I observed it. It knocked him completely down on the floor. Over, just slumped completely over. That second---
Mr. STERN - Did you hear a third report?
Mr. HOLLAND - I heard a third report and I counted four shots and about the same time all this was happening, and in this group of trees--[indicating].
Mr. STERN - Now, you are indicating trees on the north side of Elm Street?
Mr. HOLLAND - These trees right along here [indicating].
Mr. STERN - Let's mark this Exhibit C and draw a circle around the trees you are referring to.
Mr. HOLLAND - Right in there. (Indicating.)
There was a shot, a report, I don't know whether it was a shot. I can't say that. And a puff of smoke came out about 6 or 8 feet above the ground right out from under those trees. And at just about this location from where I was standing you could see that puff of smoke, like someone had thrown a firecracker, or something out, and that is just about the way it sounded. It wasn't as loud as the previous reports or shots.
Mr. STERN - What number would that have been in the----
Mr. HOLLAND - Well, that would--they were so close together.
Mr. STERN - The second and third or the third and fourth?
Mr. HOLLAND - The third and fourth. The third and the fourth.
Mr. STERN - So, that it might have been the third or the fourth?
Mr. HOLLAND - It could have been the third or fourth, but there were definitely four reports.
Mr. STERN - You have no doubt about that?
Mr. HOLLAND - I have no doubt about it. I have no doubt about seeing that puff of smoke come out from under those trees either.
Mr. STERN - Mr. HOLLAND, do you recall making a statement to an agent of the FBI several days after?
Mr. HOLLAND - I made a statement that afternoon in Sheriff Bill Decker's office, and then the Sunday or the Sunday following the Friday, there were two FBI men out at my house at the time that Oswald was shot.
Mr. STERN - Did you tell them that you heard distinctly four shots at that time?
Mr. HOLLAND - Yes.
Mr. STERN - You were certain then?
Mr. HOLLAND - I was certain then and I---in that statement I believe that I---
Mr. STERN - Well, the FBI report that I have said that you heard either three or four shots fired together, and I gather the impression of the agent was that you were uncertain whether it was three or four.
Mr. HOLLAND - At the time I made that statement, of course, I was pretty well shook up, but I told the people at the sheriffs office, whoever took the statement, that I believed there was four shots, because they were so close together, and I have also told those two, four, six Federal men that have been out there that I definitely saw the puff of smoke and heard the report from under those trees.
Mr. STERN - Did you realize that these were shots then?
Mr. HOLLAND - Yes; I think I realized what was happening out there.
Mr. STERN - What was your impression about the source of these noises, if you had one?
Mr. HOLLAND - Well, the impression was that the shots, the first two or three shots came from the upper part of the street, now, from where I was.
Mr. STERN - East on Elm?
Mr. HOLLAND - Yes, up in here somewhere. [Indicating.] I didn't have the least idea that it was up any higher, hut I thought the shot was coming---coming from this crowd in here [indicating]. That is what it sounded like to me from where I was.
Mr. STERN - You are indicating on this Exhibit C. Why don't you put a square around the area that you just pointed to. You had no idea, I take it, that the shots were coming from your area?
Mr. HOLLAND - No.
Mr. STERN - It is your impression that they did not, could not, as far as the sound was concerned?
Mr. HOLLAND - As far as the sound was concerned they did not.
Mr. STERN - Did you see anything on the overpass that seemed to you any way unusual?
Mr. HOLLAND - Oh, no; no.
Mr. STERN - Now, that statement makes clear that you heard four shots, thought you heard four shots at that time?
Mr. HOLLAND - Yes.
Mr. STERN - All right.
Mr. HOLLAND - But, two of them was rather close together, though.
Mr. STERN - So close do you think that might have been one shot?
Mr. HOLLAND - No, it was four.
Mr. STERN - You are clear there were four?
Mr. HOLLAND - No; it was different sounds, different reports.
Posner - The first three shots are consistent with Posner's theory. The statement that Kennedy was leaning foreword and Connally was turned to his right, before the second shot is very important. It places Kennedy and Connally in the correct position for the single bullet to pass through both of them. The fourth shot and the puff of smoke from the knoll would indicate a fourth shot that Posner can not explain.
Harris - Holland's testimony is extremely supportive of Harris's theory. The fact that there were to reports close together with different sound would be verification of the third shot from the rear and the fourth shot from the right front.
Harold Norman's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Norman was sitting in the fifth floor of the depository)
Mr. BALL - Now you saw the President go by, did you?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes.
Mr. BALL - What happened then?
Mr. NORMAN - About the time that he got past the window where I was, well, it seems as though he was, I mean you know, brushing his hair. Maybe he was looking to the public.
Mr. McCLOY. Saluting?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes.
Mr. BALL - With which arm?
Mr. NORMAN - I believe it was his right arm, and I can't remember what the exact time was but I know I heard a shot, and then after I heard the shot, well, it seems as though the President, you know, slumped or something, and then another shot and I believe Jarman or someone told me, he said, "I believe someone is shooting at the President," and I think I made a statement "It is someone shooting at the President, and I believe it came from up above us."
Well, I couldn't see at all during the time but I know I heard a third shot fired, and I could also hear something sounded like the shell hulls hitting the floor and the ejecting of the rifle, it sounded as though it was to me.
Mr. BALL - How many shots did you hear?
Mr. NORMAN - Three.
Mr. BALL - Do you remember whether or not you said anything to the men then as to whether or not you heard anything from above you?
Mr. NORMAN - Only I think I remember saying that I thought I could hear the shell hulls and the ejection of the rifle. I didn't tell I think I hear anybody moving, you know.
Mr. BALL - But you thought, do you remember you told the men then that you thought you heard the ejection of the rifle?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes, sir.
Mr. BALL - And shells on the floor?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes, sir.
Mr. BALL - Falling?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes.
Mr. BALL - Did anybody say anything as to where they thought the shots came from?
Mr. NORMAN - Well, I don't recall of either one of them saying they thought where it came from.
Mr. BALL - But You did?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes.
Mr. BALL - And you said you thought it came from where?
Mr. NORMAN - Above where we were, above us.
Mr. McCLOY. You spoke about seeing the President sort of slump over after the first shot?
Mr. NORMAN - Yes; I believe the first.
Mr. McCLOY. Did you see the President hit on any subsequent shots?
Mr. NORMAN - No; I don't recall seeing that.
Posner - Norman provides almost perfect ear witness testimony to support three shots being fired from a bolt action rifle from the sixth floor of the depository.
Harris - Norman's testimony is inconsistent with Harris's theory.
James Tague's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Tague was standing on the South side of Main Street, near the triple underpass)
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you see the motorcade come down Elm Street?
Mr. TAGUE - Yes; I did.
Mr. LIEBELER - Go ahead and tell us what you saw.
Mr. TAGUE - Well, I was standing there watching, and really I was watching to try to distinguish the President and his car. About this time I heard what sounded like a firecracker. Well, a very loud firecracker. It certainly didn't sound like a rifle shot. It was more of a loud cannon-type sound. I looked around to see who was throwing firecrackers or what was going on and I turned my head away from the motorcade and, of course, two more shots. And I ducked behind the post when I realized somebody was shooting after the third shot. After the third shot, I ducked behind the bridge abutment and was there for a second, and I glanced out and Just as I looked out, the car following the President's car, the one with the Secret Service men, was just flying past at that time.
Mr. LIEBELER - Going on Elm Street under the triple underpass?
Mr. TAGUE - Right. Going on Elm. So I stood there looking around. I looked up---there was a motorcycle policeman, and he stopped and had drawn his gun and was running up the embankment toward the railroad tracks. A crowd of people; several people, were starting to come down into that area where he was running, and the people pointing, and excitement up there and so on, and about that time a patrolman who evidently had been stationed under the triple underpass walked up and said, "What happened?" and I said, "I don't know; something."
And we walked up to the---by this time the motorcycle policeman returned back close to where his motorcycle was, and we walked up there and there was a man standing there. Seeing that he was very excited--I don't remember his name at the time I did have it on the tip of my tongue very excited saying he was watching the President and it seemed like his head just exploded. This was a couple or 3 minutes after this happened. And the patrolman said, "Well, I saw something fly off back on the street."
We walked back down there, and another man joined us who identified himself as the deputy sheriff, who was in civilian clothes, and I guess this was 3 or 4 minutes after. I don't know how to gage time on something like that.
And I says, "Well, you know now, I recall something sting me on the face while I was standing down there."
And he looked up and he said, "Yes; you have blood there on your cheek."
And I reached up and there was a couple of drops of blood. And he said, "Where were you standing?"
And I says, "Right down here." We walked 15 feet away when this deputy sheriff said, "Look here on the curb." There was a mark quite obviously that was a bullet, and it was very fresh.
We turned around and we looked back up to see where this possibly could have come from, and the policeman thought he had seen something over here.
Mr. LIEBELER - How long after did you feel yourself get hit by anything?
Mr. TAGUE - I felt it at the time, but I didn't associate, didn't make any connection, and ignored it. And after this happened, or maybe the second or third shot, I couldn't tell you definitely--I made no connection. I looked around wondering what was going on, and I recall this. We got to talking, and I recall that something had stinged me, and then the deputy sheriff looked up and said, "You have blood there on your cheek." That is when we walked back down there.
Mr. LIEBELER - Do you have any idea which bullet might have made that mark?
Mr. TAGUE - I would guess it was either the second or third. I wouldn't say definitely on which one.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you hear any more shots after you felt yourself get hit in the face?
Mr. TAGUE - I believe I did.
Mr. LIEBELER - You think you did?
Mr. TAGUE - I believe I did.
Mr. LIEBELER - How many?
Mr. TAGUE - I believe that it was the second shot, so I heard the third shot afterwards.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you hear three shots?
Mr. TAGUE - I heard three shots; yes sir. And I did notice the time on the Hertz clock. It was 12:29.
Mr. LIEBELER - I understand. Did you have any idea where these shots came from when you heard them ringing out?
Mr. TAGUE - Yes; I thought they were coming from my left.
Mr. LIEBELER - Immediately to your left, or toward the back? Of course, now we have other evidence that would indicate that the shots did come from the Texas School Book Depository, but see if we can disregard that and determine just what you heard when the shots were fired in the first place.
Mr. TAGUE - To recall everything is almost impossible. Just an impression is all I recall, is the fact that my first impression was that up by the, whatever you call the monument, or whatever it was----
Mr. LIEBELER - Up above No. 7?
Mr. TAGUE - That somebody was throwing firecrackers up there, that the police were running up there to see what was going on, and this was my first impression. Somebody was causing a disturbance, that somebody had drawn a gun and was shooting at the crowd, and the police were running up to it. When I saw the people throwing themselves on the ground is when I realized there was serious trouble, and I believe that was after the third shot was fired.
Mr. LIEBELER - Your impression of where the shots came from was much the result of the activity near No. 7?
Mr. TAGUE - Not when I heard the shots.
Mr. LIEBELER - You thought they had come from the area between Nos. 7 and 5?
Mr. TAGUE - I believe they came from up in here. Mr. LIEBELER - Back in the area "C"?
Mr. TAGUE - Right.
Mr. LIEBELER - Behind the concrete monument here between Nos. 5 and 7, toward the general area of "C"?
Mr. TAGUE - Yes.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you look up near the railroad tracks in that area after you heard the shots?
Mr. TAGUE - I looked all around. I looked at the complete area to try to find out where the disturbance was. And for some reason, after the third shot, I believe I ducked down back in here.
Mr. LIEBELER - Under the railroad tracks?
Mr. TAGUE - Right. Behind an abutment. And when I stuck my head outside, the Secret Service car was just starting to pass under the underpass.
Mr. LIEBELER - The car immediately behind the President. Did you see any evidence of anybody having fired from the area on the railroad tracks above the triple underpass?
Mr. TAGUE - None.
Mr. LIEBELER - Do you think that it is consistent with what you heard and saw that day, that the shots could have come from the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository?
Mr. TAGUE - Yes.
Mr. LIEBELER - There was in fact a considerable echo in that area?
Mr. TAGUE - There was no echo from where I stood. I was asked this question before, and there was no echo. It was just a loud, oh, not a cannon, but definitely louder and more solid than a rifle shot.
Mr. LIEBELER - So you, being in a place where there was no echo, you were able to recognize how many shots there were quite clearly?
Mr. TAGUE - I believe so.
Mr. LIEBELER - And you say you heard three shots?
Mr. TAGUE - That is right.
Posner - The three shots is consistent with Posner's theory, but Tague only mentions the second or the third shot as the shot that hit him. Tague also thought the shots came from the grassy knoll area, not the Depository. Tague's is clear throughout his testimony that he is vague about the details, and he seemed willing to accept that it was possible the shots came from the Depository.
Harris - Tague's testimony is consistent with Harris's theory as far as the second shot causing his wound. His testimony could be interpreted to mean that the second and third shot were closer together, but he doesn't specifically say that. He does not provide any support for a fourth shot.
Amos Lee Euins's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Euins was standing directly across the street from the Depository, it should be noted that Euins was only sixteen years old when he gave this testimony)
Mr. EUINS - Then I was standing here, and as the motorcade turned the corner, I was facing, looking dead at the building. And so I seen this pipe thing sticking out the window. I wasn't paying too much attention to it. Then when the first shot was fired, I started looking around, thinking it was a backfire. Everybody else started looking around. Then I looked up at the window, and he shot again. So--you know this fountain bench here, right around here. Well, anyway, there is a little fountain right here. I got behind this little fountain, and then he shot again.
So after he shot again, he just started looking down this, you know.
Mr. SPECTER - Who started looking down that way?
Mr. EUINS - The man in the window. I could see his hand, and I could see his other hand on the trigger, and one hand was on the barrel thing.
Mr. SPECTER - All right.
Now, at the time the second shot was fired, where were you looking then?
Mr. EUINS - I was still looking at the building, you know, behind this--I was looking at the building.
Mr. SPECTER - Looking at anything special in the building?
Mr. EUINS - Yes, sir. I was looking where the barrel was sticking out.
Mr. SPECTER - How many shots did you hear altogether?
Mr. EUINS - I believe there was four, to be exact.
Mr. SPECTER - Now, where were you looking at the time of the third shot, if you remember?
Mr. EUINS - After he shot the first two times, I was just standing back here. And then after he shot again, he pulled the gun back in the window. And then all the police ran back over here in the track vicinity.
Mr. SPECTER - All right.
Now, when the third shot occurred, Amos, let me ask you again, where were you looking then?
Mr. EUINS - I was still down here, looking up at the building.
Mr. SPECTER - What did you see in the building?
Mr. EUINS - I seen a bald spot on this man's head, trying to look out the window. He had a bald spot on his head. I was looking at the bald spot. I could see his hand, you know the rifle laying across in his hand. And I could see his hand sticking out on the trigger part. And after he got through, he just pulled it back in the window.
Mr. SPECTER - Did you see him pull it back in the window?
Mr. EUINS - Yes, sir.
Mr. SPECTER - And were you still standing at point B?
Mr. EUINS - Yes.
Mr. SPECTER - When he pulled it back in the window?
Mr. EUINS - I was still behind here, yes.
Mr. SPECTER - Where were you when you heard what you described as the fourth shot?
Mr. EUINS - The first shot I was standing here.
Mr. SPECTER - Now you are referring to 366. Put an "L" on 366 where you were standing at the first shot.
Mr. EUINS - Right here. (Witness marking.)
Mr. EUINS - And then as I looked up there, you know, he fired another shot, you know, as I was looking. So I got behind this fountain thing right in there, at this point B.
Mr. SPECTER - At point B, on 365?
Mr. EUINS - I got behind there. And then I watched, he did fire again. Then he started looking down towards my way, and then he fired again.
Mr. SPECTER - The question I have for you now is where were you when he fired on that fourth time.
Mr. EUINS - I was still behind point B.
Mr. SPECTER - You were still at point B when he fired the fourth time?
Mr. EUINS - Yes, sir. Then he pulled the gun back in the window.
Mr. SPECTER - Did you see him pull the gun back in the window after the fourth shot?
Mr. EUINS - Yes; he just come back like this.
Mr. SPECTER - Did you watch what he did after that?
Mr. EUINS - No, sir; because after he had pulled it back in the window, I ran this way, and went across the tracks.
Posner - Euins states that he thought there were four shots, but if you read his testimony at one point he describes three, and then later he describes four. In spite of this confusion Euins is an outstanding witness for Posner.
Harris - Harris may try to discredit Euins because he said four shots, but four shots is even farther away from the two that he claims were fired from the depository.
Jean Hill's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Hill was standing on the south side of Elm Street)
Mr. SPECTER - And tell me what you observed as the President's motorcade passed by?
Mrs. HILL - You mean---
Mr. SPECTER - Start any place that you find most convenient and just tell me in your own way what happened.
Mrs. HILL - Well, as they came toward us, we had been taking pictures with this Polaroid camera and since it was a Polaroid we knew we. had only one chance to get a picture, and at the time she had taken a picture just a few minutes before and I had grabbed it out of the camera and wrapped it and put it in my pocket. Just about that time he drew even with us.
Mr. SPECTER - And when you say "he" you mean?
Mrs. HILL - The President's car. We were standing on the curb and I jumped to the edge of the street and yelled, "Hey, we want to take your picture," to him and he was looking down in the seat---he and Mrs. Kennedy and their heads were turned toward the middle of the car looking down at something in the seat, which later turned out to be the roses, and I was so afraid he was going to look the other way because there were a lot of people across the street and we were, as far as I know, we were the only people down there in that area, and just as I yelled, "Hey," to him, he started to bring his head up to look at me and just as he did the shot rang out. Mary took the picture and fell on the ground and of course there were more shots.
Mr. SPECTER - How many shots were there altogether?
Mrs. HILL - I have always said there were some four to six shots. There were three shots---one right after the other, and a distinct pause, or just a moment's pause, and then I heard more.
Mr. SPECTER - How long a time elapsed from the first to the third of what you described as the first three shots?
Mrs. HILL - They were rapidly---they were rather rapidly fired.
Mr. SPECTER - Could you give me an estimate on the timespan on those three shots?
Mrs. HILL - No; I don't think I can.
Mr. SPECTER - Now, how many shots followed what you described as the first three shots?
Mrs. HILL - I think there were at least four Or five shots and perhaps six, but I know there were more than three.
Mr. SPECTER - How much time elapsed from the very first shot until the very last shot, will you estimate?
Mrs. HILL - I don't think I could, properly, but my girl friend fell on the ground after about---during the shooting---right, I would say, just immediately after she had taken the picture---probably about the third shot. She fell on the ground and grabbed my slacks and said, "Get down, they're shooting." And, I knew they were but I was too stunned to move, so I didn't get down. I just stood there and gawked around.
Mr. SPECTER - Can't you give me any better idea on the sequence of the shots other than to say that there were three shots right in a row and then a moment's pause and an additional shot or shots.
Mrs. HILL - In what way?
Mr. SPECTER - Is there any way you could be more specific by way of time lapses among any of the shots, from the first to the second shot, the second to the third, or in that manner?
Mrs. HILL - The three were fired as though one person were firing; I mean, to me. They were fired just like you could reload and fire again or whatever you do with a gun.
Mr. SPECTER - With what sort of an action?
Mrs. HILL - I think that the firing that was done could have been done with the type gun that they say the assassinator used.
Mr. SPECTER - And what type gun was that, according to your understanding?
Mrs. HILL - A bolt action.
Mr. SPECTER - And how about the shots that followed the three shots, then, what would the sequence of timing have been on those?
Mrs. HILL - I thought they were different---I thought the sequence was different.
Mr. SPECTER - How will you describe the sequence?
Mrs. HILL - Quicker--more automatic.
Mr. SPECTER - Were there as few as four, as you recollected?
Mrs. HILL - I won't say positively, I think I can still seemingly hear it, and I would still say there were more, you know, I'm saying 4 to 6. I know there were at least 4, and I just almost swear that I heard 5 or 6.
Posner & Harris - Her story doesn't match either theory. Her story has changed significantly from this original testimony, and it has always been contradicted by other witnesses and photographic evidence. I am not going to spend much time with her testimony, because that is a subject for an entirely different argument.
James Jarman's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Jarman was on the fifth floor of the Depository)
Mr. BALL - After the motorcade passed, what happened?
Mr. JARMAN - After the motorcade turned, going west on Elm, then there was a loud shot, or backfire, as I thought it was then--I thought it was a backfire.
Mr. BALL - You thought it was what?
Mr. JARMAN - A backfire or an officer giving a salute to the President. And then at that time I didn't, you know, think too much about it. And then the second shot was fired, and that is when the people started falling on the ground and the motorcade car jumped forward, and then the third shot was fired right behind the second one.
Mr. BALL - Were you still on your knees looking up?
Mr. JARMAN - Well, after the third shot was fired, I think I got up and I run over to Harold Norman and Bonnie Ray Williams, and told them, I said, I told them that it wasn't a backfire or anything, that somebody was shooting at the President.
Mr. BALL - And then did they say anything?
Mr. JARMAN - Hank said, Harold Norman, rather, said that he thought the shots had came from above us, and I noticed that Bonnie Ray had a few debris in his head. It was sort of white stuff, or something, and I told him not to brush it out, but he did anyway.
Mr. BALL - He had some white what, like plaster?
Mr. JARMAN - Like some come off a brick or plaster or something.
Mr. BALL - Did Norman say anything else that you remember?
Mr. JARMAN - He said that he was sure that the shot came from inside the building because he had been used to guns and all that, and he said it didn't sound like it was too far off anyway. And so we ran down to the west side of the building.
Mr. BALL - Did Norman say anything about hearing cartridges or ejection or anything like that, do you remember?
Mr. JARMAN - That was after we got down to the west side of the building.
Mr. McCLOY You have had military experience, haven't you?
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
Mr. McCLOY. And you can recognize rifle shots when you hear them?
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
MR. McCLOY. But you didn't hear, you didn't catch the sound of the bolt moving?
Mr. JARMAN - No, sir.
Mr. McCLOY. Did you see the President actually hit by the bullets?
Mr. JARMAN - No, sir. I couldn't say that I saw him actually hit, but after the second shot, I presumed that he was, because I had my eye on his car from
the time it came down Houston until the time it started toward the freeway underpass.
Mr. McCLOY. You saw him crumple, you saw him fall, did you?
Mr. JARMAN - I saw him lean his head.
Representative FORD. You actually saw the car lurch forward, did you?
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
Representative FORD That is a distinct impression?
Mr. JARMAN - Yes.
Representative FORD. And you had followed it as it turned from Main on to Houston and followed it as it turned from Houston on to Elm?
Mr. JARMAN - Right, sir.
Representative FORD. Had your eye on the car all the time?
Mr. JARMAN. Yes, sir.
Representative FORD. Where did you think the sound of the first shot came from? Do you have a distinct impression of that?
Mr. JARMAN - Well, it sounded, I thought at first it had came from below. That is what I thought.
Representative FORD. As you looked out the window and you were looking at the President's car.
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
Representative FORD. Did you have a distinct impression as to whether the sound came from your left or from your right?
Mr. JARMAN - I am sure it came from the left.
Representative FORD. But your first reaction, that is was from below.
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
Representative FORD. When the second shot came, do you have any different recollection?
Mr. JARMAN - Well, they all sounded just about the same.
Representative FORD. You distinctly recall three shots?
Mr. JARMAN - Yes, sir.
Posner - Jarman is more important to Posner as a corroborating witness to Norman. His timing of the third as right behind the second is not specific, but it does not tend to support Posner. His location of the shots as coming from below is also inconsistent with Posner's theory
Harris - The timing seems to be strong support for Harris. The location of the shots is an even bigger problem for Harris. Harris believes the first and third shots came from above Jarman, in the depository, while the second came from below in the Dal-Tex Building. Jarman not only misplace two of the three shots, he thought they all sounded the same.
Phillip Willis's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Willis was across the street from the Depository)
Mr. LIEBELER - All right. Now, you are certain that the first shot was fired at approximately the time or shortly at approximately the time you took the picture that has been marked Hudson Exhibit No. 1; is that right?
Mr. WLLIS - I am positive.
Mr. LIEBELER - Do you remember hearing the shot?
Mr. WLLIS - Absolutely. I, having been in World War II, and being a deer hunter hobbyist, I would recognize a high-powered rifle immediately.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you recognize this as a high-powered rifle?
Mr. WLLIS - Absolutely.
Mr. LIEBELER - And you heard it just about the time you took the picture that has been marked?
Mr. WLLIS - That's right.
Mr. LIEBELER - Prior to the time you took the picture, which is marked Hudson Exhibit No. 1?
Mr. WLLIS - Absolutely.
Mr. LIEBELER - How many shots were fired altogether, Mr. Willis?
Mr. WLLIS - Three shots.
Mr. LIEBELER - Do you have any question about that at all?
Mr. WLLIS - No, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you follow the car down Elm Street after you took the picture, which we have marked Hudson Exhibit No. 1?
Mr. WLLIS - I proceeded down the street and didn't take any other pictures instantly, because the three shots were fired approximately about 2 seconds apart, and I knew my little daughters were running along beside the Presidential car, and I was immediately concerned about them, and I was screaming for them to come back, and they didn't hear me. But I was concerned about them immediately, because I knew something tragic had happened, and the shots didn't ring out long like a rifle shot that is fired into midair in a distance. I knew it hit something, and it couldn't have been a firecracker or anything like that, so it impressed me, I remember, and after I found my daughters, I saw they were heading back toward their mother.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you actually observe the President when he was hit in head?
Mr. WLLIS - No, sir; I did not. I couldn't see that well, and I was more concerned about the shots coming from that building. The minute the third shot was fired, I screamed, hoping the policeman would hear me, to ring that building because it had to come from there. Being directly across the street from the building, made it much more clear to those standing there than the people who were on the side of the street where the building was.
Mr. LIEBELER - So you thought you had picked out a particular building at the time when you heard shots?
Mr. WLLIS - Absolutely.
Mr. LIEBELER - What building was that?
Mr. WLLIS - The Texas School Book Depository Building.
Mr. LIEBELER - You were pretty sure?
Mr. WLLIS - I felt certain. I even looked for smoke, and I knew it came from high up.
Mr. LIEBELER - How did you know that?
Mr. WLLIS - I even observed the clock on top of the building, it was 12:33 when I looked up there.
Mr. LIEBELER - The clock on top of the School Book Depository?
Mr. WLLIS - There is a Hertz sign on top of the building, and it alternates the time of day and the temperature, and when I looked up, it was 12:33, and the temperature was 68 degrees, as shown in my slide on No. 12.
Mr. LIEBELER - So you did not actually observe the President at the time he was hit in the head?
Mr. WLLIS - No, sir; I was just taking a picture of him, and the presidential party in the car come through my viewfinder and my camera. But my little daughter ran back and said, "Oh, Daddy, they have shot our President. His whole head blew up, and it looked like a red halo."
Mr. LIEBELER - Which one? Is this the girl that is here today?
Mr. WLLIS - The little one was the one that made that remark. My youngest daughter, Rosemary. The one that is with me today also saw it, and she went back and told her mother the same thing. And her mother said, "Yes; I saw it."
Mr. LIEBELER - Now, did you see anything hitting in the street along the President's car as it went down Elm Street?
Mr. WLLIS - No, sir; I did not.
Mr. LIEBELER - You say there were three shots fired? You heard three shots fired?
Mr. WLLIS - Yes.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you think that the President had been hit by the first shot?
Mr. WLLIS - I didn't really know, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER - You couldn't tell whether he was hit by the first shot? You couldn't tell whether he had been hit by the first shot or the second shot or the third shot, or by how many shots he had been hit?
Mr. WLLIS - No, sir; except this one thing might be worthy of mention. When I took slide No. 4, the President was smiling and waving and looking straight ahead, and Mrs. Kennedy was likewise smiling and facing more to my side of the street. When the first shot was fired, her head seemed to just snap in that direction, and he more or less faced the other side of the street and leaned forward, which caused me to wonder, although I could not see anything positively. It did cause me to wonder.
Mr. WLLIS - Across the street from Elm Street on the same side as the School Book Depository, which goes down the hill toward the underpass, and the policemen started going over there, called to see if someone, evidently thinking it came from that direction, and then is when I started to ring this building. I knew it came from high above directly across the street from me, and that is the one thing I was absolutely positive about.
Mr. LIEBELER - You made that judgment from the sound of the shots?
Mr. WLLIS - From the sound, absolutely. And this may be verified by the fact that I took several pictures of the crowd immediately around that building.
Mr. LIEBELER - Yes; I notice.
Mr. WLLIS - I had no doubt about that, because I was that certain in my own mind.
Posner - Willis is very certain that there were three shots fired from an upper floor in the Depository. The only inconsistency with Posner's theory is his claim that the shots were two seconds apart.
Harris - Willis's testimony is inconsistent with Harris's theory.
Linda Willis's Warren Commission Testimony (back to the list of witnesses)
(Willis was across the street from the Depository)
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you hear any shots, or what you later learned to be shots, as the motorcade came past you there?
Miss WILLIS. Yes; I heard one. Then there was a little bit of time, and then there were two real fast bullets together. When the first one hit, well, the President turned from waving to the people, and he grabbed his throat, and he kind of slumped forward, and then I couldn't tell where the second shot went.
Mr. LIEBELER - Now, you were standing right along the curb on Elm Street, is that right, when the motorcade came by across the street from the School Book Depository Building?
Miss WILLIS. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you follow the motorcade down Elm Street at all, or did you stand on the corner up toward Houston Street and watch from there?
Miss. WILLIS. I was right across from the sign that points to where Stemmons Expressway is. I was directly across when the first shot hit him.
Mr. LIEBELER - Directly across from the sign that says, "Stemmons Freeway"?
Miss WILLIS. I was right in line with the sign and the car, and I wasn't very far away from him, but I couldn't tell from where the shot came.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you just stay right there, or did you go on down Elm Street?
Miss WILLIS. I stayed there. I was on the corner across from the courthouse when the motorcade first came down Main Street, and when it turned the corner on Houston, well, I followed along the street with the car, and then he turned the corner on Elm and I stood there where the Stemmons sign is.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you see the President get hit in the head?
Miss WILLIS. Yes.
Mr. LIEBELER - You actually saw the President get hit that way?
Miss WILLIS. Yes.
Mr. LIEBELER - How far away would you say that you were when you saw that?
Miss WILLIS. Oh, about twice as far as I am from here to this door. Maybe not quite that far.
Mr. LIEBELER - About 25 feet or so?
Miss WILLIS. About that.
Mr. LIEBELER - Now when you saw the President get hit in the head, did you hear any more shots after that?
Miss. WILLIS. Yes; the first one, I heard the first shot come and then he slumped forward, and then I couldn't tell where the second shot went, and then the third one, and that was the last one that hit him in the head.
Mr. LIEBELER - You only heard three shots altogether?
Miss WILLIS. Yes; that was it.
Mr. LIEBELER - So you don't think there were any more shots after he got hit in the head?
Miss WILLIS. No.
Mr. LIEBELER - Did you recognize the noises that you heard as shots right away?
Miss WILLIS. No; when the first shot rang out, I thought, well, it's probably fireworks, because everybody is glad the President is in town. Then I realized it was too loud and too close to be fireworks, and then when I saw, when I realized that the President was falling over, I knew he had been hit. But I didn't know how badly.
Posner - Her testimony about the timing of the shots is inconsistent with Posner's theory.
Harris - Assuming she completely missed the fourth shot, her testimony is very consistent with Harris's theory