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John Simkin

Who Killed Bobby?

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Its excellent... some new (fresh) investigative insights that are not common knowledge, plus good food for critical thought. I am 2/3rds through it, and its very informative building on past work by Melanson, Klaber, Kaiser et al. It examines the role of Ambassador security (especially Gardner and his interaction with ACE security) as well as the hypnotic exams given to Sirhan in jail. He spurs interest in a key question... how was RFK led into the 'killing zone" by a last-minute change in exit route, and were there 'insiders' or traitors associated with the Kennedy camp. Thoughtful treatment of the compromised Sirhan defense team, and additonal expose of the biased (and Agency-influenced) LAPD Pena and Hernandez. He also treads into the necessary (but difficult) black waters of Morales, and his possible presence at the Ambassador... in spite of the conflicting opinions and observations of the film, I remain convinced that the hand of Morales is present (literally). It will be interesting to compare Shane's work with what Larry Hancock is doing on the Mary Ferrell website.

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Gene,

Thanks very much for your feedback. I agree the Ambassador head of security William F. Gardner is an intriguing figure who hasn't really been covered before. There are so many contradictions in his FBI interviews and if there was anyone pulling strings backstage, he strikes me as a key figure who was never properly questioned. But I find it hard to believe there was a Judas in the Kennedy camp, given the agonised look on the faces of his aides in the pantry, so how RFK was manipulated into the "killing zone" still eludes me.

As for Ace Guard Service: after his very candid interview with Betsy Langman, I don't suspect Frank Hendrix, the Ace owner, but I find it very curious that nobody seems to have ever spoken to Tom Spangler, Thane Eugene Cesar's contact at Ace and the man who summoned Cesar to the Ambassador that night.

I'm also keeping Morales in the frame. There may be another twist to his story yet. Enjoy the rest of the book. When I was in the US last month, I interviewed Phil Van Praag about the new audio evidence. The resulting 7-minute update to my film will be screening on the Documentary Channel and online soon.

Best,

Shane

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In chapters 17-18 of “Who Killed Bobby” you examine the filmed evidence taken on the night of the assassination. To summarize you point out the following identification/non-identification of the following:

Subject 1

Gordon Campbell

Yes - Bradley Ayers,

James Crichfield

Yes – Tom Polgar (later changed his mind)

No – Lois Crichfield

Michael D. Roman

Yes – Michael Roman’s son,

Subject 2

George Joannides

Yes – Ed Lopez, Dan Hardway, Tom Polgar (later changed his mind)

Frank Owens

Yes - Michael Roman’s son

Subject 3

David Morales

Yes – Bradley Ayers, Wayne Smith

No – Ruben Carbajal, Tom Clines, Ed Wilson, Manny Chavez, Luis Ferdnandez, Rita Morales, Sandra Morales

The problem is that a great number of these people are unreliable witnesses. That is to say they are protecting fellow members of the CIA or are defending the reputations of their fathers.

In my view, the most reliable witnesses are Ed Lopez, Dan Hardway and Wayne Smith. However, that does not mean they are right. From the evidence you have accumulated, I would suggest that subject 1 is almost certainly Michael Roman but there are possibilities that subject 2 and 3 are Joannides and Morales. Do you agree?

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John,

On paper, those who provided negative identifications could be accused of having vested interests but ultimately, I was persuaded they were being honest and open with me. I was particularly impressed by how helpful Chavez, Fernandez, Roman and the Morales family were in answering my questions and providing new images (Rita and Sandra are pseudonyms, by the way).

I now believe the two figures in the ballroom are Michael Roman and, probably, Frank Owens. The Bulova connection and the actions of Roman after the shooting are a bit strange but I don't now believe the man with him is Joannides.

The "Morales" identification is so disputed at this stage, I prefer to emphasise that Morales confessed he was in Dallas and Los Angeles and, after talking to his family, they have no alibi for his whereabouts on June 5, 1968. This is significant because generally Morales' family lived with him wherever he was posted, with the exception of his tour of Vietnam and his first year in Laos.

Brad Ayers, Wayne Smith and Ed Lopez are all highly credible and I found their IDs persuasive for a long time. While I personally now doubt it is Morales in the video, the new images of Morales his family provided made Ayers and Smith even more sure of their original IDs. Even if it isn't Morales in the video, his statement that he was there and his implication that he was involved must be followed through as far as possible. What more can be done to pin this down, I'm not sure.

Best,

Shane

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John,

On paper, those who provided negative identifications could be accused of having vested interests but ultimately, I was persuaded they were being honest and open with me. I was particularly impressed by how helpful Chavez, Fernandez, Roman and the Morales family were in answering my questions and providing new images (Rita and Sandra are pseudonyms, by the way).

I now believe the two figures in the ballroom are Michael Roman and, probably, Frank Owens. The Bulova connection and the actions of Roman after the shooting are a bit strange but I don't now believe the man with him is Joannides.

The "Morales" identification is so disputed at this stage, I prefer to emphasise that Morales confessed he was in Dallas and Los Angeles and, after talking to his family, they have no alibi for his whereabouts on June 5, 1968. This is significant because generally Morales' family lived with him wherever he was posted, with the exception of his tour of Vietnam and his first year in Laos.

Brad Ayers, Wayne Smith and Ed Lopez are all highly credible and I found their IDs persuasive for a long time. While I personally now doubt it is Morales in the video, the new images of Morales his family provided made Ayers and Smith even more sure of their original IDs. Even if it isn't Morales in the video, his statement that he was there and his implication that he was involved must be followed through as far as possible. What more can be done to pin this down, I'm not sure.

Best,

Shane

Shane, upon watching your film at COPA, it occurred to me that "Morales" was in fact a light-skinned black man. I don't remember if we discussed this--but the thought occurred that he was with the L.A. Fire Department, which was admittedly on the scene. If you're still searching for his identity, you might want to ask someone at the L.A.F.D.

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John,

On paper, those who provided negative identifications could be accused of having vested interests but ultimately, I was persuaded they were being honest and open with me. I was particularly impressed by how helpful Chavez, Fernandez, Roman and the Morales family were in answering my questions and providing new images (Rita and Sandra are pseudonyms, by the way).

I now believe the two figures in the ballroom are Michael Roman and, probably, Frank Owens. The Bulova connection and the actions of Roman after the shooting are a bit strange but I don't now believe the man with him is Joannides.

The "Morales" identification is so disputed at this stage, I prefer to emphasise that Morales confessed he was in Dallas and Los Angeles and, after talking to his family, they have no alibi for his whereabouts on June 5, 1968. This is significant because generally Morales' family lived with him wherever he was posted, with the exception of his tour of Vietnam and his first year in Laos.

Brad Ayers, Wayne Smith and Ed Lopez are all highly credible and I found their IDs persuasive for a long time. While I personally now doubt it is Morales in the video, the new images of Morales his family provided made Ayers and Smith even more sure of their original IDs. Even if it isn't Morales in the video, his statement that he was there and his implication that he was involved must be followed through as far as possible. What more can be done to pin this down, I'm not sure.

I found the interviews with Morales’ two eldest daughters interesting. On page 462 Rita Morales claims that David Morales was at home on the evening of the assassination of JFK and showed no reaction to the death. This sounds very abnormal and suggests that he was keeping himself under tight control (something that all spooks have to do when the subject matter of an issue concerns their work).

Rita said in the interview that “when he wasn’t drinking, he was a good guy”. The only problem with this assessment is that he was an alcoholic.

Rita also says: “If my father got a direct order to do it, I’m sure he did it. He knew the people who could get the job done.” Doesn’t sound like a “good guy” to me.

What do you make of Bradley Ayers as a witness? Do you think it is possible that he made the identification in order to publicize his book?

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Pat: Great to meet you at COPA. Several others also thought the "Morales" figure in the video was a light-skinned black man. While Morales was "deeply bronzed," he was, of course, Yaqui Indian. The apparent height difference (Morales was 5'10' according to Agency records; the "Morales" in the video towers above those around him and seems well over six foot) also presents a problem.

Interesting suggestion re the L.A. Fire Department but, as far as I know, all officers present were in full LAFD uniform. William Gardner and Fred "Pat" Murphy were the only hotel security officers in plainclothes and they were much older and Anglo, so the identity of the "Morales" figure and his friend with the pencil moustache taking notes still eludes me.

John: From speaking to the family, Morales was distant and would never talk about work or reveal his political views. His daughters didn't find out he was a Republican until much later in life. So, this sort of non-reaction to the assassination would fit that pattern. Having said that, I'm not sure I believe Morales was at home that evening because Rita's recollection is vague and a bit non-descript. Sandra Morales couldn't remember where her father was that day.

Rita acknowledged Morales was an alcoholic and she didn't see as much of the "good guy" (i.e. good family man) as she'd have liked.

Re: “If my father got a direct order to do it, I’m sure he did it. He knew the people who could get the job done.” The family attitude seems to be: he was in the military, he was very loyal and very good at his job and he followed orders. Joining the CIA rescued Morales from the barrio. If he was told to do something, he'd do it but he'd never jeopardise his status by operating without agency clearance. He may have done a lot of things we don't want to know about, but those were the times.

As for Brad, you know that so many facts from "The War That Never Was" regarding his presence at JM WAVE and training the Cubans in the swamps have been validated by agency veterans over the years. So I think he's an excellent witness but applying that to photo identification, 40+ years after he last saw Morales and Campbell, is difficult.

I certainly don't think he made the identification in order to publicize his book. Wayne Smith obviously made the same identification of Morales.

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Gene,

Thanks very much for your feedback. I agree the Ambassador head of security William F. Gardner is an intriguing figure who hasn't really been covered before. There are so many contradictions in his FBI interviews and if there was anyone pulling strings backstage, he strikes me as a key figure who was never properly questioned. But I find it hard to believe there was a Judas in the Kennedy camp, given the agonised look on the faces of his aides in the pantry, so how RFK was manipulated into the "killing zone" still eludes me.

As for Ace Guard Service: after his very candid interview with Betsy Langman, I don't suspect Frank Hendrix, the Ace owner, but I find it very curious that nobody seems to have ever spoken to Tom Spangler, Thane Eugene Cesar's contact at Ace and the man who summoned Cesar to the Ambassador that night.

I'm also keeping Morales in the frame. There may be another twist to his story yet. Enjoy the rest of the book. When I was in the US last month, I interviewed Phil Van Praag about the new audio evidence. The resulting 7-minute update to my film will be screening on the Documentary Channel and online soon.

Best,

Shane

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Shane:

I'm intrigued by what seasoned operatives have to say about a how such an event would be designed, especially luring RFK into the pantry. The interaction of Cesar with Gardner is of interest. The Polka Dot girl almost seems too contrived... another obvious distraction, being intentionally seen (and heard) by many witnesses, both before and after. As Larry Hancock has surmised, hardly the behavior of a professional. There had to have been several teams in place that night, contingencies for the possible paths Bobby would take after the speech. The scene was secured quickly, and evidence was controlled... similar to Dealey Plaza five years earlier. Another impression I have from reading your work is that LA was picked for many reasons (in advance) with pre-staged police accomplices, attorneys and investigators, phony coroner assistants etc. The entire response, investigation and trial were rigged comprehensively from the start. And within one year, key volumes of evidence were destroyed well in advance of any appeals. I have a number of strong impressions I want to share with you, now that I've finished your book, including the strange behavior of Sirhan's brothers (who must have known what he was doing in the preceeding months) with the authorities... I'd think Sirhan's whereabouts in the previous year would be catalogued in brute detail (like Oswald). Curious that all we get is the simple 'white fog" excuse. Tom Rathke, Jerry Owen and Dr. Bryan seemed to disappear from public scrutiny after 1975. Also, Sirhan's ranting/ravings in captivity remind one of Jack Ruby... spontaneous tears at the mention of Israel and bombers, strong anti-semetic overtones (that don't really fit the mild-mannered christian Sirhan), suggestion of the hero role... essentially painting him with a persona that mirrors the phony motive. Your book is excellent work and a nice read.

Gene

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Who in the RFK research community are among the best informed, most articulate, etc and have good info on the 'girl in the polka dot dress' and mk-ultra goods?

forgive me folks, I have not read all the info in all these threads. The recent news stories re: Sirhan Sirhan's hypnosis/ legal team has me very interested.

Looking to line something up at my school.

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I read most of the book. Outstanding. Now with the new lawyer, I think 'the girl in the polka dot dress' is probably not a red herring, what with the 'she touched my arm and I was in 'range mode. I saw red circles and thought I was at a shooting range'

The Dr. Bryan and all 'Manchurian Candidate' chapter material was the most captivating, eerie stuff. wow.

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As we approach the 45th anniversary of the RFK assassination, Sirhan's legal team are still hard at work on his habeas corpus petition. After Judge Wistrich recommended the petition be denied, Bill Pepper and Laurie Dusek filed objections on March 29 - see Russ Baker story here.

The prosecutor then filed a response and two weeks ago, Sirhan's team filed their reply to the prosecutor's objections. As far as I know, all these filings will now be adjudicated by U.S. District Judge Beverly Reid O’Connell, who has just taken over the case. She can uphold the petition and grant a new trial; grant an evidentiary hearing; or dismiss the petition.

I have uploaded all of these court filings to the Files tab of the Facebook group discussing the assassination. My book Who Killed Bobby? is also now available on Kindle and has been updated to include Dr. Dan Brown's report on his work with Sirhan.

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Pat: Great to meet you at COPA. Several others also thought the "Morales" figure in the video was a light-skinned black man. While Morales was "deeply bronzed," he was, of course, Yaqui Indian. The apparent height difference (Morales was 5'10' according to Agency records; the "Morales" in the video towers above those around him and seems well over six foot) also presents a problem.

Interesting suggestion re the L.A. Fire Department but, as far as I know, all officers present were in full LAFD uniform. William Gardner and Fred "Pat" Murphy were the only hotel security officers in plainclothes and they were much older and Anglo, so the identity of the "Morales" figure and his friend with the pencil moustache taking notes still eludes me.

John: From speaking to the family, Morales was distant and would never talk about work or reveal his political views. His daughters didn't find out he was a Republican until much later in life. So, this sort of non-reaction to the assassination would fit that pattern. Having said that, I'm not sure I believe Morales was at home that evening because Rita's recollection is vague and a bit non-descript. Sandra Morales couldn't remember where her father was that day.

Rita acknowledged Morales was an alcoholic and she didn't see as much of the "good guy" (i.e. good family man) as she'd have liked.

Re: “If my father got a direct order to do it, I’m sure he did it. He knew the people who could get the job done.” The family attitude seems to be: he was in the military, he was very loyal and very good at his job and he followed orders. Joining the CIA rescued Morales from the barrio. If he was told to do something, he'd do it but he'd never jeopardise his status by operating without agency clearance. He may have done a lot of things we don't want to know about, but those were the times.

As for Brad, you know that so many facts from "The War That Never Was" regarding his presence at JM WAVE and training the Cubans in the swamps have been validated by agency veterans over the years. So I think he's an excellent witness but applying that to photo identification, 40+ years after he last saw Morales and Campbell, is difficult.

I certainly don't think he made the identification in order to publicize his book. Wayne Smith obviously made the same identification of Morales.

Everyone,

Please watch this video by Shane O'Sullivan about David Sanchez Morales' possible involvement in the assassination of RFK and the goings on in the Ambassador ballroom a few minutes after the assassination.

Of particular interest to me is the short clip starting at 6:35 which shows the "David Sanchez Morales" character in the Ambassador's ballroom, turning his head around to watch the entrance of two men who are about ten feet apart from each other as they walk from right to left. It looks like as soon as he spies the second man ("horseshoe" mustache; wearing glasses and a light colored sweater), "Morales" snaps his head back around to the front. Could that glasses-and-sweater-wearing guy with the "horseshoe" mustache be professional assassin Michael Townley?

Townley was 25.5 years old at the time of RFK's assassination.

DionisioSuarez_MichaelVernonTownley_Virg

Townley (center), in a photo published in a 1980 newspaper article.

JFKtownleyM.jpg

Townley

Townley-2.jpg

Townley

--Tommy :sun

Edited by Thomas Graves

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