Officer Buddy Walthers, Deputy Sheriff, Dallas County Sheriff's Office

Nov 22, 1963

I was standing at the front entrance of the Dallas Sheriff's Office when the motorcade with President Kennedy passed. I was watching the remainder of the President's party when within a few seconds I heard a retort and I immediately recognized it to be a rifle shot. I immediately started running west across Houston Street and ran across Elm Street and up into the Railroad yards. At this time it was not determined if, in fact, this first retort and 2 succeeding retorts were of a rifle, however, in my own mind, I knew. Upon reaching the railroad yard and seeing other officers coming, I immediately went to the triple underpass on Elm Street in an effort to locate possible marks left by stray bullets. While I was looking for possible marks, some unknown person stated to me that something had hit his face while he was parked on Main Street, the next lane south from Elm, as the traffic had been stopped for the parade. Upon examining the curb and pavement in this vicinity, I found where a bullet had splattered on the top edge of the curb on Main Street which would place the direction firing high and behind the position the President's car was in when he was shot. Due to the fact that the projectile struck so near the underpass, it was, in my opinion, probably the last shot that was fired and had aparently went high and above the President's car. At about this time word was passed through the crowd that the President had been shot, as well as Governor Connally. The only building that was likely to have a shot fired from in this area was the Texas School Book Depository Building on the northwest corner of Elm and Houston streets which, by this time, was fast becoming surrounded by police officers. Upon returning to the front of this building, I met Allen Sweatt, Chief Criminal Deputy of the Dallas Sheriff's Office and immediately escorted 5 witnesses to the shooting which he turned over to me and took them to Sheriff Bill Decker's office and placed them in the custody of Deputy Harold Elkins until they could be questioned. At this time Deputy Allen Sweatt told me that a police officer had been killed in Oak Cliff area somewhere on Jefferson Street. I immediately left the office with Deputies J. F. Ramsey and Deputy Frank Vrla and ran Code 3 to oak Cliff. I received information by radio that there was a suspect

in the Dallas Public Library located at Marsalis and Jefferson. Upon arriving at this location, we were met by a number of other police officers and we surrounded the library. It was then determined that the person inside the library was the wrong person. Upon getting back into our automobile, we started towards 10th Street, where the police officer had been killed in an effort to obtain further information and then received radio information from Deputy Sheriff Bill Courson, who was also in the Oak Cliff area, that the subject was in the balcony of the Texas Theatre on West Jefferson. We arrived at this location within a few swconds and were met by many other officers. Upon proceeding to the balcony of the theatre, I ordered the manager to turn on the house lights. Some unknown officer was holding a white man at the steps of the balcony and I proceeded on into the balcony. I looked over the balcony and saw a commotion in the center section, near the back, in the downstairs of the theatre, and I hollered to other officers, "He's Downstairs"., and we all ran down the steps and to the area of the commotion. When I reached the area of commotion, it was hard to tell "Who had Who" as there were so many officers into a melee on the floor between the seats, but I saw Officer Carroll of the Dallas Police Department standing on the other side of the melee of people and I could see a gun on the floor with 2 or 3 hands on it and I reached into this melee and pulled up on the people and I believe it was Officer Carrol who reached down and got this gun. I am not positive it was Officer Carroll, but I believe it was, however, there was such a swarm of officers at this time, it was hard to determine. 4 or 5 officers then began carrying subject towards the front of the theatre and I picked up my shotgun which I had laid down in some seats away from the melee and me, along with several other officers who had shotguns, proceeded outside and held the crowds back so the officers could put the suspect in a car. The crowds were pushing and yelling, "kill the SOB" and "let us kill the SOB". The only thing I ever heard the suspect say was, "Its all over". After they left the area with the suspect, me and the officers who were with me got in our car and reported back to sheriff Decker at his office. Sheriff Decker then ordered me, together with

Deputy Harry Weatherford and Deputy J. L. Oxford to go to a house at 25115 West 5th Street in Irving, Texas and met some officers from Capt. Will Fritz' office. We arrived at location and met detective Rose and Adamcik from the Homicide division of the Dallas Police Department. Upon getting to the residence, we were met by Mrs. Michael Payne and upon showing our credentials and advising her who we were, she stated, "It's about the President being shot, Weve been expecting it. Come on in". She informed us that the lady standing beside her was Mrs. Oswald. Mrs. Payne went on to explain that Mrs. Oswald spoke only Russian, however, he would help interpret as she spoke both English and Russian. Upon asking if suspect Oswald lived at this location, she advised that his wife and children lived there, but that Lee Oswald and his wife had been separated and he did not live there. Mrs. Payne gave us permission to search the house or do anything we wanted to and she also, through interpretation, gave us Mrs. Oswald's permission to do the same. Mrs. Payne then gave us a telephone number and stated that was the phone number of Lee Oswald, however, she advised she did not know an address where he was staying. At this time, I called Sheriff Decker and advised him of this and he criss-crossed this telephone number and gave us an address of 1026 North Beckley. He advised he would dispatch other officers to cover this address. About this time, Mr. Michael Payne came to this location. Mr. Payne works at Bell Helicopter Plant. When told of the incident, Mr. Payne did not seem at all surprised, and merely stated that he had just taken off and had come home, when he heard that the President had been shot. It was then learned that Mr. Payne had also been separated from Mrs. Payne and that he has been living in Grand Prairie. Mr. Payne gave no explanation for coming to his house in Irving, Texas.

Upon searching this house we found stacks of hand bills concerning "Cuba for Freedom" advertising, seeking publicity and support for Cuba. Also found was a set of metal file cabinets containing records that appeared to be names and activities of Cuban sympathizers. All of this evidence was confiscated and turned over to Captain Fritz of the Dallas Police Department and Secret Service Officers at the City Hall.

A blanket was found at location that had a string tied around one end of it and still bore an imprint of a rifle. It was then determined that suspect, LEE OSWALD had spent the previous night at this house. It was also determined from Mrs. Oswald that the day before, a rifle was in this blanket. Further interrogation of Mrs. Payne and Mrs. Oswald was carried on at the office of Captain Will Fritz, Dallas Police Department, at which I was not present.