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Decker's File

Greg Parker

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In a 1998 Probe Article called Harvey, Lee and Tippit: A New Look at the Tippit Shooting by John Armstrong, is the following passage:

He maintained his innocence and described himself as a "patsy" but to no avail. The Dallas Police charged him, one "Lee Harvey Oswald," with murder. Sheriff Bill Decker provided the Warren Commission (12H51) a file titled "Harvey Lee Oswald, W M 24, murder.....11/22/63 of John Fitzgerald Kennedy." At least the Sheriff's department got his name right.

12H51 contains the relevant part of Decker's testimony. It states:

Mr. HUBERT - Let me mark this document, then--I am marking it, "Dallas, Tex., April 16, 1964, as Exhibit 5323, Deposition of Sheriff J. E. Decker," and I am signing my name to it.

The document is actually a dark brown heavy folder with an Acco fastener. It is called Acco Press on the inside and bears the label on the outside, "Harvey Lee Oswald, WM 24, Murder-- 11-22-63 of John Fitzgerald Kennedy; W-M-46, President of the United States. Assault to murder: Gov. John B. Connally."

CE 5323 is of course, said file. When Armstrong says "at least the Sheriff's Department got his name right", he is referring to the mythical "Harvey". The irony is, CE 5323 does get his name right: Lee Harvey Oswald. The mistake was Hubert's. Armstrong was either extremely lax in not checking CE 5323, or intentionally misleading in citing Hubert's error instead of the actual document. This is part of a familiar pattern with Armstrong's work. But you actually have to check the evidence he uses in order to find that out.

In any event, I hope he was wise enough to leave this out of his book.

Probe article


CE 5323

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