Saturday, December 14, 2013

Tippit's Partner - R. C. Nelson Talks

Tippit’s Partner Talks -

Exclusive: JFK Assassination Witness Speaks For 1st Time
CBS4 Investigative Reporter Jilda Unruh Contributed To This Report
November 20, 2013

DALLAS (CBSMiami) – When President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was cut down by an assassin, a chain of events began that included the murder of a police officer, the capture of the alleged presidential assassin, and the murder of the assassin.

In the 50 years since the Kennedy assassination, one Dallas Police officer who was in the middle of the chaos that enveloped the city in the hours and days that followed the murder has never shared his story about what he saw, heard and did. Until now.

For the first time ever, R.C. Nelson, retired from the Dallas Police, talked exclusively to about the pandemonium that came after the assassin’s bullets rang out in Dallas. Nelson has never spoken about the events, even to the Warren Commission.

On November 22, 1963, Nelson was working out of the southwest substation in Dallas. He said that police were spread all over the city guarding multiple areas.

“Only two people were working the south district,” Nelson said, “my partner J.D. Tippit and me. Tippit was working the entire Oak Cliff section.”

On a normal day, Nelson estimated there would have been 10-12 squads covering the area.

Nelson said he was across the viaduct from the Texas Book Depository when he heard the shots ring out in the cold Dallas air. The police dispatch was almost immediately on the air with reports of shots fired.

What Nelson heard was the shots that would forever change American history. President Kennedy, riding through Dealey Plaza in Dallas was shot along with Texas Governor John Connolly. Kennedy was fatally wounded by a second shot after the initial shot appeared to go through his neck.

Nelson said he was on the scene within two minutes and when he arrived, people were still on the ground and screaming. Nelson asked a motorman when he got to the scene what had happened?

“Somebody shot and killed Kennedy,” Nelson recalled the “motor jockey” (motor patrolman) saying. “He was up there (pointing to book depository). I saw the rifle in the window when I looked up.” Nelson said the motorman then said, “I saw Kennedy’s head blown off.”

Nelson contacted an inspector to ask what to do and his superior told him to just be in the area.
It wasn’t long after the assassination of President Kennedy that a second call came across the Dallas Police dispatch radio, this time of an officer shot in Oak Cliff. The officer, J.D. Tippit, was Nelson’s partner on “night shifts and deep night shifts,” but the two were not paired together on November 22.

Officer Tippit was described by Nelson as a, “nice, east Texas guy who loved his family and worked hard and did what he was supposed to do, but wasn’t very curious. He liked to write his tickets and go home. He had a bad habit of not looking at you when he was talking to you.”

Nelson said he had actually talked to Officer Tippit before the fateful day in Dallas about his partner’s tendency toward avoiding eye contact with subjects.

Official reports said that Officer Tippit pulled over Lee Harvey Oswald based on a description that was broadcast over the Dallas Police radio. Oswald then murdered Tippit before leaving the scene of the murder.
Nelson said he believed that Oswald actually flagged Officer Tippit down because he “can’t imagine Tippit pulling him (Oswald) over and saying “come here.”

“I think he (Oswald) was amazed that he wasn’t arrested after the shooting,” Nelson recalled. “The book depository was covered with cops and he walks out! He didn’t appear to have a plan. He couldn’t go home. So he hails a cab and then gets on a bus.”

Another aspect of Nelson’s belief that Tippit didn’t seek out Oswald was that Tippit didn’t secure or guard his pistol and the first shot hit the officer in the temple, suggesting Tippitt was looking away.

Oswald shot Tippit on 10th Street in Dallas and Nelson and several others went to a library a block away.
“While we were preparing to go into the library, we heard someone had gone into the Texas (movie) theater without paying,” Nelson said. “It was about three blocks away and we converged on the Texas theater.”

Nelson said he first went to the back entrance, but then that went to the front of the theater and entered the lobby.
Three police officers, Nick McDonald, C.T. Walker, and Charles Harrison were bringing Oswald into the lobby.

“Apparently, Oswald hit McDonald, then pulled a gun on him and one of the other (cops) knocked the gun away,” Nelson recalled. “That’s when McDonald punched Oswald. Both of them had bumps on their heads. I watched as Oswald came out of the theater in handcuffs.”

But that’s not where Nelson’s brush with history, or the story of Oswald ended.

Two days after the assassination of Kennedy and with an entire nation in mourning, Nelson was assigned to the basement’s main door entrance from city hall. Oswald was scheduled to be moved from city hall to the county jail and he was being moved through the basement.

Nelson said all of the television cameras, which broadcast the transfer and what happened in the basement, entered through the door where he was standing guard.

As Oswald was moving through the basement, Nelson was approximately 20 feet away when he heard a shot ring out and then chaos. Chicago businessman Jack Ruby had gotten into the basement and shot Oswald with a .38 revolver.

Nelson said Ruby was bent over and he heard someone yell, “Get his gun.”

 “I grabbed for his hands and didn’t find a gun,” Nelson said. “But I managed to manhandle him into the basement jail house office and handcuffed him.”

Ruby reportedly said, “It’s me, it’s Jack,” right after he fired the fatal shot at Oswald. Ruby knew several Dallas Police officers, but Nelson said he was not familiar with him.

What hasn’t been shared before is what Nelson said happened just before the shooting and then in the immediate aftermath.

According to Nelson, right before Oswald was brought to the basement, a Dallas Police decoy car was brought to the basement and plain clothes cops were put inside the car to distract the media from the real transfer vehicle.

The decoy car drove up the north ramp, which Nelson said was actually the entry ramp to the basement.
“They drove up the north ramp which was actually the entry ramp into the basement and drove around the block,” Nelson said.

Nelson said the lieutenant driving the decoy car came walking back through his area after parking in the basement again. Nelson said he was positive that Ruby had not passed him to get into the basement.

According to Nelson, Lieutenant Sam Pierce said Ruby walked right by the decoy car and walked down the north ramp into the basement. Shortly after the shooting, however, Nelson was told Dallas Chief of Police Jesse Curry wanted to see him.

When Nelson got to Chief Curry’s office, he saw Lieutenant Pierce was already in the office. The chief told Nelson, “R.C., this isn’t going to be held against you with all the TV cameras that were coming into the basement.”

Nelson thought Chief Curry was implying that Ruby had gotten past him. Nelson said he told the chief that, “You can tell them anything you want, but Ruby didn’t come by me!”

In the days that followed, Officer Tippit would be laid to rest and when Nelson saw his former partner’s wife to try to comfort her was hard.

“The first time I had contact with her; it was tough,” Nelson recalled. “You’ve got a partner and you see his wife and kid at his funeral. (Choking up) It was pretty tough.”

Over the next year, the Warren Commission investigated the assassination of President Kennedy and the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald. Despite his being right in the middle of the historical events, Nelson said he was never called to testify.

“I thought it was kind of strange, because all during the Warren Commission hearings, no one knew how Ruby got into the basement,” Nelson said.

As the decades have gone by, Nelson said he’s had a chance to talk about the events, but said he didn’t “feel like talking about it.”

“Several authors contacted me and I just didn’t feel like it,” Nelson said. “But lately, many of my family members have tried to get me to tell my story.”

R.C. also said that some authors have even alleged that he was “involved in the conspiracy.”

“I wasn’t,” Nelson said. “I want my family to have something recorded so my great-grand kids will know the real facts.”

It’s been 50 years a cold and sunny November day in 1963 became such a nightmare that tens of millions of Americans can still tell you exactly where they were when they heard the news. For R.C. Nelson, the memories of the day Camelot died are still crystal clear.

 (Disclosure: R.C. Nelson is the brother of CBS4 News’ Gary Nelson)

BK: Vincent Bugliosi (Reclaiming History, p. 66) refers to R.C. as Ronald C. Nelson, who is ordered, along with Tippit, to move into central Oak Cliff, though Nelson heads to center city instead.
Also note that he doesn’t say there wasn’t a conspiracy, he says that he wasn’t involved in one.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

David Atlee Phillips - "Maurice Bishop"

While working on a list of new items that came out over the course of the 50th anniversary I mentioned a few new witnesses – who unexpectedly “came out of the woodwork,” and inadvertly included a recent signed statement by Antonio Veciana that his CIA case officer “Maurice Bishop” was in fact David Atlee Phillips, and the person he saw talking with Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas in the summer of 1963.
This statement is addressed to Marie Fonzi, the widow of Gaeton Fonzi, the former Congressional investigator who uncovered the mysterious operations conducted by spymaster “Maurice Bishop,” now AKA – Also Known As David Atlee Phillips.

When I was at the Wecht conference in Pittsburgh I heard that she was there and was carrying on some of the work her late husband had begun, but I didn’t expect a signed confession from Veciana.
As Marie Fonzi correctly points out in her note posted on my blog:

“Antonio Veciana did not send this letter ‘out of the blue.’ I have been corresponding with him over a year. With the help of a mutual friend, Joaquin Godoy, who relayed many messages, Mr. Veciana decided to reveal Bishop's identification. I am sure it is the result of the mutual respect and admiration he and my husband, Gaeton, had for each other.”

-          Marie Fonzi on JFKCountercoup.blogspot blogpost: Veciana Identifies Phillips as Bishop'

Indeed, and it is with much respect and admiration that I too will try to continue their work and follow up on some of the many loose ends of this investigation.

While many of us had already pretty much determined that David A. Phillips was “Maurice Bishop,” based primarily on the dozen or so common points in their mutual careers, [See:   ], it is reassuring to get an outright confession, and the reasons for the hesitation in issuing it is quite well understood.

More can be learned from a number of sources – including Wayne Smith, the former US State department diplomat who knew David Atlee Phillips from his Havana Embassy days, the papers of Washington investigator Kevin Walsh, and Phillips’ own papers, which are being processed at the National Archives by Phillips’ former media asset and close friend Joseph Goulden.

One of the lines of inquiry that Anthony Veciana presented was the Pan Am Bank of Miami, Florida, where he said he was sent to an office where he was trained in tradecraft and psychological warfare techniques. The Pan Am bank in Miami is also where Jack Ruby deposited cash that he took out of Havana for Lewis McWillie’s bosses, the Fox brothers, who owned the casino McWillie worked.

Robert Ray McKeon, who met both Ruby and Oswald because of his association with running guns to Fidel Castro, said that he was paid for the gun running with money wrapped in Pan Am bank wrappers.
So these three separate mentions of the Pan Am bank in three different and diverse but associated areas makes it likely that there was some shenanigans going on there, and that the basic background info on the bank – who were the directors in 1960-63? – Where was the bank located? Who had offices there? Etc., could lead to some ties among those who controlled bank activities.

The main point of Veciana’s identification of Phillips as “Bishop,” besides providing such basic investigative leads as the Pan Am bank, it also takes Lee Harvey Oswald out of the realm of a deranged lone nut case and places him firmly in the COP – Covert Operative Personality profile where he belongs.

In the summer of ’63, when Veciana says he saw Phillips with Oswald in the lobby of the Southland Center, part of the Dallas Sheraton hotel complex, Oswald was ostensibly in New Orleans, but he traveled widely on public transportation and was often gone – gone “underground” is how he put it, he most certainly could have been in Dallas more than once that summer.

At the time Phillips was the head of the CIA’s Cuban covert ops, and operating out of the US Embassy in Mexico City, he was responsible for the surveillance of the Cuban embassy there. It just so happens that a few weeks after Veciana saw Phillips talking with Oswald in Dallas, Oswald goes to the Cuban embassy in Mexico City and then returns to Dallas. So it would make sense that Oswald and Phillips would meet before Oswald’s mission to Mexico, and it may not have had anything at all to do with the assassination that would happen in Dallas a few months later.

Indeed, if Phillips was helping to frame Oswald for the assassination, he was framing himself by letting Veciana see them together – or was it just a typical tradecraft screw up? A small mistake that would one day – decades later, come back to haunt Phillips?

After 20 years in the CIA, rising to the third highest position in the agency – Chief of the Western Hemisphere Division, Phillips resigned to form the Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO), and write a few books, including on the Texas justice in a homicide, the fictional Carlos Contract, a handbook on intelligence professions for students and “Nightwatch – 20 Years of Peculiar Service,” a non-fictional account of his CIA career that would match nearly perfectly with that of the Veciana’s case officer “Maurice Bishop.”

It was at a AFIO conference, with Clare Booth Luce giving the keynote address, when Fonzi took Veciana to meet Phillips face to face.

Quite ironically Phillips was working as a freelancer at Washingtonian Magazine when Fonzi’s lengthly article on Veciana, “Maurice Bishop” and David Atlee Phillips was published in the same magazine.

After Phillips began using the resources of AFIO to sue for libel, both Washingtonian and a British newspaper that published a similar article by Anthony Summers, I called Phillips on the phone and talked with him for quite awhile. Phillips denied being “Maurice Bishop” or knowing Lee Harvey Oswald and was quite perplexed as to why Fonzi didn’t just walk down the hall at Washingtonian Magazine and ask him some questions and give him the opportunity to defend himself.

Summers and British reporter David Leigh, then an intern at the Washington Post, tracked down Veciana’s former Havana bank secretary in South America, and she recalled receiving phone calls for Veciana from a “Maurice Bishop,” and that the name was somehow connected to a reporter named Prewett.

They found Virginia Prewett in Washington working for the North American Newspaper Alliance (NANA), and that she had frequently written about Veciana’s Alpha 66 anti-Castro Cuban terrorist raids, and she said she knew both “Maurice Bishop” and David Phillips, and they were different people.

But David Leigh’s article on all of this never saw print in the Washington Post or anywhere, and the British newspaper that published Tony Summers’ article was sued for libel by Phillips and his AFIO.

Unfortunately, both Virginia Prewett and David Atlee Phillips died of cancer, but not before Phillips had a few drinks with Kevin Walsh.

Walsh was an old school investigator who knew all the Washington ropes, and while he was having a few drinks with Phillips, he later quoted Phillips as telling him that he did know Oswald and that Oswald was an agent who was involved in a plot to kill Castro, but he didn’t know how or why it was Kennedy who was killed, and not Castro.

So Veciana’s letter to Marie Fonzi is a significant development, did not “come out of the blue,” or the woodwork, and clearly places Oswald and Phillips together – and thus removes Oswald from the deranged lone nut category and into the Covert Operative Personality profile – which makes whatever happened at Dealey Plaza a covert operation and not the haphazard act of a madman.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Assassination Psychoanalysis

Assassination Psychology – Psychoanalysis 
By William Kelly

Richard Sprague, the former prosecutor and first chief counsel to the House Select Committee on Assassinations, tasked with investigating the assassination of President Kennedy, and said to be the son of two psychologists, when asked about Oswald’s mental state said, “I am not about to find out if Oswald was nurtured at his mother’s breasts, my approach to evidence is more direct.”

Sprague was then directly relieved of his job. 

But those who believe Oswald killed Kennedy for his own psychological reasons fail to connect to the real motives behind the assassination.

There was a lot of psycho-analysis going on over the course of the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy, most of coming from those who believe JFK was killed by a deranged lone nut who often reflect on the mindset of conspiracy theorists and why they believe what they do.

Rather than review the evidence that convinces nearly 80% of the people that Oswald didn’t act alone in killing JFK, they prefer to psychoanalyze the logic and reasoning of most people everywhere, in every time and generation, to believe conspiratorial forces killed JFK.

Instead of considering the facts that support the belief of most people hold that Oswald wasn’t on the Sixth Floor at the time of the assassination, wasn’t the sniper in the window who didn’t shoot the fatal shot that came from the front of the president, those radical extremists who stick to the implausible belief that Oswald killed JFK alone want to psychoanalyze the rest of us who don’t see things quite as clearly as they do.
One of the first books to attack the critics of the official version of events – “The Scavanagers and Critics of the Warren Report” – was co-authored by Lawrence Schiller, who also co-authored Norman Mailer’s book about Oswald, and who has refused to share the KGB files that were provided to them.

More recently Marquette University professor John McAdams wrote a book about how conspiracy theorists think and imply their thought processes are illogical.

Those who promote the idea that a deranged Oswald killed Kennedy alone like to psychoanalyze the logic of so-called conspiracy theorists, like Professor Michael J. Wood, lecturer at eh University of Winchester in Hampshire, England, who claims that conspiracy theorists operate under a different set of assumptions than other, more rational people. When it comes to the assassination of President Kennedy Wood parrots Priscilla Johnson McMillen, who has often said the same thing as he says, “It was a pretty shocking event on a national scale, and to think it could be the product of just one person is very unsettling.”

But Professor Wood has it backwards – if Oswald was a deranged madman who killed JFK alone, that could be understood, - what is unsettling is the idea that Oswald didn’t kill JFK alone and instead it was a successful conspiracy and coup d’├ętat and our democracy has been robbed of us, and that’s why they’re keeping all of the secret records hidden under the guise of “national security.” Now that’s unsettling. It’s not unsettling that it was a deranged, lone nut, it’s unsettling that it was a conspiracy.

They say how difficult it is for conspiracy theorists to accept the fact that one lowly little man had the ability to commit such a tremendous act and change the course of history, and how reassuring it is to think that there was something more sinister behind it.

But it is not the mind-set of the conspiracy theorists that should be studied, it is the mind of the assassin – the man who pulled the trigger – or to flip the coin – the mind set of lone nutters who want us to believe that the assassin was a lone nut rather than an agent of those who wanted Kennedy eliminated.

If we must examine what motivates people to believe silly theories, let’s look more closely at the mind-set of the minority - 20% who hold the radical extremist view that one deranged loner killed the Kennedy, a smaller, more easily isolated and studied minority group.

At the 2013 Wecht conference in Pittsburgh Lisa Pease mentioned a formal study of those who espouse such extremist beliefs as Holocaust Deniers, 9/11 Truthers, Obama Birthers and she added Lone Nutters in the JFK case, pointing out that while they all represent a small, similar less than 20% of the population minority viewpoint, only the Lone Nutters occupy important and significant positions in government, academia and the media.

This despite the facts of the case and that Lone Nutters are totally illogical, as they claim that the alleged assassin sought fame and a place in history, yet this belies the fact that he denied the deed and claimed he was set up as a patsy.

Also illogical is the attempt to portray Oswald as a lonesome loser who couldn’t hold a job and failed at everything he tried to do, yet claim he had the wherewithal to successfully kill Kennedy all by himself. If he did kill Kennedy wouldn’t that make him the world’s best and greatest assassin in history?

And wouldn’t his mind and motives be studied by psychologists as a standard case study today?
If Oswald killed Kennedy all by himself, wouldn’t it be of interest to determine exactly how he did it? Where’d he get the bullets? How’d he get the gun in the building? How’d he get down the stairs without any of the four people on the steps seeing him?

In late August 1964, as the Warren Commission was wrapping up its report, Lee Harvey Oswald’s older brother Robert received a telephone call from Warren Commission attorney Wesley Liebler, who was holed up in a remote cabin while writing the part of the Warren Report about Oswald’s motives. Libeler told Robert Oswald he had a few minor questions, some lose ends that had to be tied, like “Why’d he do it?”
Why would Oswald kill the President if he sincerely liked him? Why did Oswald deny the deed if he did it to achieve fame and place in history?  Why’d he do it? What was his motive?

Robert Oswald was flabbergasted. Here the US government undertook this giant investigation and concluded Oswald did it alone for his own psychological motives, and they would have us believe they are reasons that we will never know because they were his own personal demons – like Ted Bundy, or John Hinckley. Just plain crazy.

But what if Oswald wasn’t the Sixth Floor Sniper assassin, and was set up to be the Patsy as he claimed – is the mind and psychology of the Patsy worth studying or knowing?

It’s like what Vincent Bugliosi said to John Judge – “I heard you don’t believe Oswald acted alone,” to which Judge replied, “Oh, I think Oswald acted alone all right, I just don’t believe he killed anyone.”
Whether Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone assassin, one of the multiple shooters or a just a mere Patsy, his motivations are worth reviewing, especially if what happened at Dealey Plaza was not the random act of a madman but a well planned and successfully executed covert intelligence operation.

Those who claim a deranged Oswald acted alone can say “case closed” and go home, leaving the psychoanalysis to the psychologist, but if Oswald didn’t act alone, then there is a big hole in our “national security” shield, a hole that has allowed the intelligence network responsible for killing Kennedy to go on and continue unheeded, and permitted to function within the government from then until now.

There are two types of investigations – criminal and intelligence – with a the purpose of a criminal investigation being the accumulation of evidence that can be presented in a court of law to convict those responsible and an intelligence investigation to determine exactly what happened, how and why it occurred, more so it won’t happen again than to prosecute those responsible.

When the Secret Service commissioned some psychologists to study the history of political assassinations in the United States and profile those who have attacked the president, both recent and historically, they failed to include one profile that I think is particularly important when it comes to political assassinations – that of the covert operational profile. And since they didn’t mention it – and being from New Jersey where we have a reputation for developing criminal profiles – I have outlined what I call the COP – the Covert Operative Personality.

And regardless as to whether you believe Lee Harvey Oswald was the Sixth Floor Sniper and lone assassin or if he was set up as the Patsy, Oswald pretty much sets the proto-type of the COP profile as a former USMC, trained in radar, electronics and counter-interrogation techniques, fluent in two or more languages, quiet, well read and with a passive-aggressive personality type……

Of those who fit the COP profile – Oswald is joined by Frank Forini Sturgis of Watergate fame, Gerry Patrick Hemming, Tosh Plumlee, Michael Townly, Ali Mohammid, and others I will nominated ASAP. 

Evidence - On the Nature of Evidence and the Assassination of JFK

EVIDENCE – On the Nature of Evidence and the Assassination of JFK 
By William Kelly

When he wasn’t working as a policeman, detective, lieutenant and chief of detectives for the Camden County (NJ) Prosecutors Office, my father enjoyed reading pulp paperback novels – westerns and private eye mysteries, but two of the books on his permanent shelf – behind the glass door bookshelf, were some hardbound police manuals, including a few that I picked up – “The Detection of Murder” by William F. Kessler, MD and Paul Weston (1953 Greenberg), and “Techniques for the Crime Investigator,” by William Dienstein (Charles C. Thomas Publishers,  Ill, 1952, 1965).

Although textbook manuals for “policemen, investigators, detectives, prosecutors, lawyers and judges,” these books read in parts much like the sparse but direct vocabulary of Sam Spade.
In their “Detection of Murder,” Kessler and Weston explain quite clearly that there are four cases of death – natural, suicide, accidental and murder, and “it is the duty of the police to investigate the circumstances attending the death by examination of the crime scene and questioning witnesses.  His object is to explore the events that led up to it and to seek a reconstruction of the last hours spent on earth of the deceased. From this portion of the initial investigation, it is expected that a reasonable conclusion as to the possible mechanism of death can be made.”

“Experienced police officers and medical examiners are astounded by the ease with which the untrained and the incompetent make positive statements at a death scene – statements which are entirely at odds with the manner in which these inexperienced individuals can readily recognize a suicide or an accidental death but have trouble in marshalling the evidence that points to murder.”

“A corpus delici is the essential elements of a crime and the criminal agency. In homicide it is divided into two component parts, the first of which is the death of the person, and the second is that the death is produced through a criminal agency.”

“In this connection the New York Penal Law provides that the following proof of death is required in all homicide cases: ‘No person can be convicted of murder or manslaughter unless the death of the person alleged to have been killed and the fact that the killing by the defendant, as alleged, are each established as independent facts; the former by direct proof, and the latter beyond a reasonable doubt…That someone is dead is directly proved whenever a body is found…However in determining guilt or innocence from circumstantial evidence, there are two general rules to be observed: 1) The hypothesis of guilt should flow naturally from the facts and be consistent with them all; 2) The evidence must be such as to exclude, to a moral certainty, every hypothesis but that of guilt. In other words, the facts proved must all be consistent with and point to guilt, and must be inconsistent with innocence.

In “Techniques for the Crime Investigator,” William Dienstein is more specific and writing directly to the first responding investigator when he writes: “The job of the investigator is to discover…what specific offense has been committed, how it was committed, by whom it was committed, where it was committed, when was it committed and, under certain circumstances, why it was committed.”

The investigator, Dienstein said, “must have the ability to stick to a task in spite of the monotony of it and in spite of many obstacles…. He must have a certain native ability, an intelligence which enables him to acquire information easily and readily and which enables him to use this information. He should have a capacity to think through situations….The investigator must be as intelligent as the offender.”

“A primary factor of personal integrity is a sincere desire to arrive at a conclusion based upon facts. The investigator must be free of bias or prejudice, and cannot let these emotions interfere with his objective efforts to arrive at the facts.”

“Another requisite is an understanding of people and the environment in which they live. It is through this understanding that an investigator is often able to develop leads which might otherwise escape his attention. The investigator must know what prompts people to act as they do in various situations. He must know the weaknesses and strength of people so that he can use them to his advantage, particularly during interrogations. A knowledge of psychology of human behavior is essential to the investigator…He must possess that knack of being able to get along with people, that quality which enables people to confide in him.”

“Investigation requires thinking and acting, acting based on continual thinking. One mistake may make invalid months of tedious effort. An investigator cannot seek personal aggrandizement….does not seek personal credit, but rather seeks to give credit to others who have assisted him…Commendation is due them for their part in the administration of justice.”

“The clues that lead to the solution of an offense lie in the scene of the crime. Therefore, the investigator must be aware of what constitutes evidence, what are the clues, where they may be found, and how they may be produced, collected and preserved.”  

“Evidence is anything that may be presented in determining the truth about a fact in question. Evidence is that which supplies the means of arriving at the truth. Evidence may be a matter of fact from which another matter of fact may be inferred.”

“So far as the investigator is concerned, everything at the scene of a crime that can be used in ascertaining what in fact occurred constitutes evidence.”

“Evidence is obtained through one or more of the five senses – seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling or tasting. It is this evidence, unearthed by the investigator through the use of these senses during the course of an investigation that enables him to reconstruct the happening, to identify the person or person involved, and to destroy the alibi of suspects. From the crime scene, evidence is gathered to establish the fact of the offense and to identity of the perpetrator. To prove commission of an offense, the steps which constitute the crime must be taken. These steps are considered the elements of the crime.”

“The investigator must establish each step of the crime in order to prove the offense, and in order to establish each step, he must be aware of the elements in each offense. The elements of a crime are the aggregate of those factors necessary to constitute the particular offense. Two elements most common to all offenses are the act and the intent. The elements are indicated in the statutory definition of the particular offense.”

“the elements of the crime of murder are that the victim named or described is dead; and the death of the victim resulted from an act or an omission of the accused; that the accused had a premeditated design to kill, or intended to kill or inflict great bodily harm, or was engaged in an act inherently dangerous to others, such as an act which shows wanton disregard of human life. Unless all three of the above elements are established through investigation, the crime of murder is not proved, although some other offense may be proved.”

“Physical evidence found at the scene of an offense may permit the investigator to reconstruct the manner in which the act was committed. Such evidence may also identify the perpetrator. He may have left a personal article which can be traced to him….he may have left his trademark of operation.”

“There are two types of evidence found at a crime scene; fixed or immovable evidence and moveable evidence….If the possession of the evidence is unaccountable for a moment, the evidence is rendered inadmissible. A general rule to be followed by every investigator is: Nothing at a crime scene is too insignificant for proper treatment. Cases are never lost because too much evidence has been gathered and preserved.”

“…Too often an investigator will close a case when he has secured enough proof to convince himself that the accused is guilty…His findings must be such as to convince a court that the accused committed an illegal act. The most common error made by investigators is to pass up evidence as immaterial and unnecessary. Later, the evidence so passed may be of great importance. No investigator can tell what observation will be important in the future.”

“Evidence is always present at the scene of the commission of any crime. Whether or not the evidence is found is another matter. That it is not found, does not prove its absence….The perpetrator of a criminal act must leave traces of his actions. Those traces are part of the crime scene.”

“One person must be in charge of a crime scene. He will direct the protection and search….The names and addresses of all persons found on or adjacent to the scene are obtained…and questioned….and later interrogated….Witnesses should not be permitted to talk to each other and complete statements taken.”

“The first act of the search commander, after witnesses have been detained, is to protect the area not only against curious bystanders but against curious officials….The next step is a preliminary survey of the scene to orient the investigator and enable him to get the whole picture. The investigator will start “cold.” That is, he will have no preconceived notions of what happened, how it happened, and who might have done it. What he finds and where he finds it will be the facts upon which he does his thinking…Starting an investigation with a preconceived notion will lead an investigator into gross errors by causing him to look for those things which establish his preconceived idea and to overlook the things which disprove it. This is usually an unconscious working of the mind…Conclusions must arise from the findings; findings cannot arise from conclusions.”
“Photography plays a very important part in this stage of the investigation….for an accurate and paramount record.”

“The investigator cannot belittle the fact that the actual solution of the offense is in the scene of the crime. It is from the search of the crime scene and adjacent areas that the means of the approach to the scene of the perpetrator is established and the means of escape from the scene is discovered.”


“Information is secured from two primary sources: recorded sources and persons. Investigative activity is made up largely of searching records and talking to people. Records are consulted as a means of securing documentary corroboration of verbal information and as a direct means of obtaining information and unearthing leads. People are consulted for the purpose of getting information about the subject and situation under investigation. This information may establish certain suspicions or may direct the investigator along other lines of inquiry. The ability to secure information is the chief asset of any investigator.”

“…When evidence is presented factually and graphically, the judge and jury are in a far better position to arrive at a logical conclusion than if the evidence is indefinite and inaccurate. There is no danger of securing too much accurate and detailed information about a situation that is the subject of an investigation. The trail of a criminal case should not be a guessing match in which witnesses and investigators alike participate. The trial should be an accurate and scientific presentation of the facts. The judge or jury is expected to decide a case on the basis of fact. To do so, the judge or jury must get the facts. Justice is dependent upon the presentation of all the facts. The absence of some of the facts may result in the drawing of unfounded conclusions.”


“In trying to arrive at some conclusion as to just what creates the criminal impulse that drives the knife home or presses on the trigger of the murder weapon, two major factors must be considered.
The first factor is the circumstances surrounding the killing. These may involve a period of several years prior to the crime or they may concern only the situation at the time of the murder. Secondly, the natural tendencies of the murderer or the suspects in the case must be considered, as the characteristics of individuals are indicative of the manner in which they will react in most situations.”

“The investigation into the circumstances of a murder will reveal the situation which confronted the individual guilty of the killing, and a knowledge of the characteristics of each suspect will give the investigator some knowledge of how each of them would react to such a situation.”

“Each of us has a ‘threshold to murder,’ a point at which our reaction to a situation may result in a killing. An individual born in the South will seek to avenge a real or fancied insult by the use of arms much faster than one born in the North. Yet there are ‘fighting words’ which may result in an altercation ending in murder in any section of the country. It all depends on the individual and the situation with which he is confronted.”


“Motive is that which stems from within the individual, rather than from without. It is that which incites an individual to certain actions. Motive is the ‘why’ of an act, the reason for it. Intent is the result of the motive, and is the bridge between motive and action. Without intent, no action would be taken.”

“When plans are made to do some act then an intent to do that act has been made as the result of some motivation. The intent in murder is to kill. The motive might be anything. Motive or its absence may be of considerable importance in determining the intent of the defendant. Murderous intent may be inferred from motive clearly established, while absence of motive is more than pertinent to the question of intent where it is an issue.”


“In securing convictions for first degree murder it is imperative that the correct motive be shown to the jury. Conviction for ‘Murder One’ must be supported by proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the homicide was committed by the accused from a premeditated and deliberate design to the effect the death of the person killed. It must be shown that there was a deliberate premeditated intention to kill, and that the killing followed.”

“Proof of premeditation and deliberation requires proof of some reflection preceding the actual murder. If a killer thinks about the killing and makes a choice as a result of such mental action, then there is sufficient deliberation within the law.”

“If the killer was motivated by any of the motives classified in this chapter, then the possibility of a first degree murder conviction is enhanced.”


“The motivations for murder can be divided into seven definite groups:

11)      Profit 2) Elimination 3) Revenge 4) Jealousy 5) Conviction 6) Sadism 7) Sex


Anarchists excuse their crimes, their sometimes wanton slaughter of the innocent, because of their political beliefs. It is their fixed conviction that anything, including murder, necessary to carry out their plans for world domination is permissible because of the importance of their plans. ‘Political’ crimes, from single murders to mass murder, are likewise excused by those concerned on the grounds of conviction.”


“Removal of the person who happens to be ‘in the way’ is the determining factor in a great number of murders. In the true elimination murder the continued existence of the victim is inconvenient or dangerous to the killer.”

“Lovers remove a husband or a wife who is in the way, a youth kills a former mistress so he may marry the girl of his dreams, and the girl of someone’s dreams may kill an unwanted child in order to smooth the path of a proposed marriage. A blackmailer may be killed as the only feasible method of denying continued demands for money. These, and the killing of professional criminals, are the murders motivated by a desire to eliminate the victim.”

“Professional criminals do not usually kill for any other motive than elimination. Certainly, they may kill in a rage, for revenge, or out of jealousy, but they are a group with a cautious attitude towards murder.”
“And those concerned with organized crime, vice, gambling, and narcotics, will also kill. Perhaps it’s a stool pigeon who is to be eliminated, a business competitor, or the ‘boss’ himself. Murder is the method of discipline among the gangs of the organized underworld. It is also a regular technique of such business.”

“Elimination killings which occur among gangsters and other criminals are truly difficult to unravel. A body is found and police know of several people who would profit from the elimination of the dead man, others who may have threatened to ‘get him,’ and some who may have thought him as a man that ‘had to go.’”

“However, in over 90 percent of these gang killings the persons who have the motive for killing never handle the gun that fires the fatal shots, nor drive the car that may be used in the killing. They are involved in the conspiracy and are guilty of murder because they procured the ‘trigger men’ who did the actual killing, but they have an alibi to prove they were many miles away from the scene of death at the time of the homicide.” 
“There are few witnesses, fewer that are willing to testify, and even this number is reduced by murder when it becomes known they are willing to ‘finger’ a killer.”


“Modus Operandi was developed early in this century by Major General Sir Llewelyn W. Atcherley of Yourkshire, England. Modus Operandi means method of operation. The modus operation file consists of records that describe the manner in which a criminal operates. These records are classified and filed in such a way as to assist in identifying the crime as one committed by a known criminal or as one of a series committed by an unidentified criminal.”

“People have a tendency to do particular things in individual ways. They develop habits of action from which they seldom vary – habits in doing their jobs, habits in traveling, habits in the everyday, routine activities…The way in which an offender commits an offense will distinguish him from others committing the same offense…He leaves his calling card at the scene of every offense. The place and method of attack identify him. The modus operandi system is a useful tool in identifying a crime as having been committed by an unknown criminal.”

“The success of the Modus Operandi system depends upon the ability of the investigating officers and the ability of the operator of the file. The investigating officers must be able to discover and report methods and facts essential to the proper classification of the crime. The operator of the file must be able to classify the data secured and to make searches for data already available.”


“One of the important factors in an initial investigation is to reconstruct the last hours, even the last days, of the deceased. Who saw him last? With whom did he eat his last meal? Who spoke to him over the telephone in his last hours? Where he went and what he did in the period preceding death are what must be reconstructed. And it is the reconstruction of this period that most often reveals the true facts surrounding unexplained and unexpected death.”


“The interrogation of persons concerned in a suspicious death is directed towards exploring the circumstances that lead up to the moment of death, and possibly the facts surrounding the killing. Friends, associates, as well as relatives are questioned. Neighbors are interviewed for what they may know of the victim and for information as to persons who may have visited the deceased. “In some instances a house-to-house canvas of the neighborhood is of value. Someone may have noticed a stranger in the neighborhood or a resident acting strangely. Someone who saw the murderer enter or leave a block may be found. Perhaps a canvas may reveal that the murder is a resident of the neighborhood. Sudden flight, agitation, etc. are warning signs. Photographs, address books, letters, and other personal papers are examined minutely for the names of individuals who may through light upon the case.”


BK Notes: New Yorker Magazine (Dec. 2013) has an article about the nature of police interrogation techniques – and why the procedure practiced by most American law enforcement agencies – by matter of policy, is that called the Reid Technique – by former Chicago policeman John Reid?Sp., which promotes bogus psychological techniques that attempts to obtain a confession from suspects, often obtaining false confessions.

I believe that this technique was practiced by Dallas homicide chief Capt. Will Fritz.

When it was realized – primarily by the British – that the techniques advanced by Reid were based on bad psychology – since proven wrong – they – the British devised an alternative interrogation technique that is more persuasive in obtaining accurate information, develops a personal narrative and is conducive in detecting and unraveling lies.

The Reid technique, according to the author of the New Yorker article and new book on the subject, was written by a lie detector operator – machine technician based on a science that falsely believed that detection could be determined by measuring anxiety and body language, and the subject (suspect) manipulated into confessing to the crime, which they did even if innocent.

Those who were in Captain Fritz’s office when Lee Harvey Oswald was interrogated, all expressed the belief that Oswald was not only a cool and composed customer, but that he had been trained in counter-interrogation techniques.