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Was the rifle fired that day?


Terry Adams
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DENIS MORISSETTE'S KENNEDY ASSASSINATION PAGE, Question to DPD Lt. Carl Day : Was Oswald's rifle tested as to whether or not it was fired on November 22, 1963?

DAY : The only examination of the rifle by the Dallas Police Department was the checking for prints that I did and this wasn't completed before the gun was released to the FBI.

(Day cont.) I am not sure what you mean by 'tested'. I am guessing that you are wondering if the gun was fired on November 22, 1963. Contrary to the movies, where they smell a gun to see if it has been fired, I know of no reliable test to accurately determine if a gun was fired today, yesterday or last month.

I had found this statement over a year ago, but had misplaced it. I cannot imagine "ANYONE", especially a police officer, saying that one cannot tell if a gun had been fired recently. This absolutely can be done by simply smelling the barrel. When I was young and would go rabbit/squirrel hunting here in the hills of Eastern Kentucky, I would always clean my gun after I got home. This included using a rod and an oiled swath of cloth to remove the gunpowder residue from the barrel, if I were lucky enough to shoot at one of these wary little critters. I can recall, clearly, that the smell of gunpowder was present in the barrel, sometimes many hours after having been fired. I personally believe that this is the elephant in the room" when it comes to the Warren Commission's theory on the assassination. The ear-splitting silence about there being no powder smell from the gun says it all, IMO.

Terry

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I can recall, clearly, that the smell of gunpowder was present in the barrel, sometimes many hours after having been fired. I personally believe that this is the elephant in the room" when it comes to the Warren Commission's theory on the assassination. The ear-splitting silence about there being no powder smell from the gun says it all, IMO.

Terry

Captain Fritz also testified that he did not smell the rifle barrel, nor did he (or the FBI as I recall) pull back the rifle bolt and look down the barrell to see if any gunshot residue was visible.

I would love to see some "expert" commentary on this and wonder if this subject is covered in standard textbooks on forensic science.

There are also other reasons to doubt that the rifle was fired that day, and some of those reasons are discussed in this recent thread started by Donald C. Willis on the McAdams Forum:

http://groups.google.com/group/alt.assassi...5f0054c8?hl=en#

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... There are also other reasons to doubt that the rifle was fired that day, and some of those reasons are discussed in this recent thread started by Donald C. Willis on the McAdams Forum...
The discussion there is, unfortunately, woefully incomplete. (Feel free to copy my comments there, Ray, tho' I don't feel compelled to ask you to send me back all the ad hominem that will surely result from them.)

The first thing that I notice is that the name "Jack" doesn't appear anywhere: how can anyone posit a "general collision in the vicinity of the 5th-floor stairwell" without mentioning the man who was standing "10 feet west of the west elevator," i.e., directly in the path of "the fleeing Oswald?" What difference does it make whether or not "the three blind mice" could see the stairwell from the southwest windows if Jack was standing right smack-dab there? He, on the other hand, was asked only if he'd seen Oswald, but not if he'd seen anybody at all come down the stairs.

Anyone who posits "no shooter" on the sixth floor has got to be nuts. This is neither to say that it was Oswald who did any such shooting, or that whoever did it actually hit anyone, but merely to say that if there was any intent on anyone's part to draw attention to the TSBD and away from any other locations, at least one shot must've been fired from there in order to accomplish that. I don't imagine that gunfire from the knoll, Dal-Tex, the records building or anywhere else could have accomplished that any better than actual gunfire from there. A gun barrel withdrawing into the window would be a nice accompaniment, but why bother with the gun if you're not going to fire it? Again, no need to actually hit anything, just create noise.

There is likewise little or no doubt that a rifle that apparently hadn't been there before lunch was up there afterward; why bother with that if you're not going to at least use it as a prop during the actual shooting? Surely nobody's going to posit that there were similar weapons cached in various buildings around the kill zone in vague hopes of just one of them being found and the rest being discarded without being found. Not unless, of course, everybody was "in on the plot."

Of course, if it was Oswald firing with the C2766 MC, then all of the above is explained anyway (with the usual disclaimers). If not, then whoever placed it there - whether or not they shot anything from or anyone with it - was not someone who'd just been casually walking by with a rifle and decided out of the blue to discard it there 'cuz it seemed like as good a place as any.

That the weapon was in a "well-oiled condition" strongly implies - but of course doesn't necessarily prove - that it had been recently cleaned, and if that was the case and it hadn't been fired, it would have been pretty foolish of someone who'd "planted" the gun to not have fired it, for it would have been either or both pretty difficult to prove that it had been fired if it was completely devoid of GSR in the barrel, and/or risky to presume that the cops wouldn't have checked to see if there was any GSR as, apparently, they didn't. It needn't, in such a case, have to have been fired at that time, but it would have had to have been at least recently ... - although some of the other considerations above would militate for it having been fired at that time.

Again, it didn't require hitting anybody, and fragments would only require that it hit something - steel floorboards as an example, a human skull as another - hard enough for the bullets to cause them to break up.

I would beg to differ with Tony Marsh about both (1) the bullet fragments being ballistically proven to have been fired from the rifle, and (2) acoustical evidence showing shots fired from the 6th floor window. I don't dispute that the fragments and the markings thereon were "consistent with" bullets fired from the C2766, but "ballistically proven" is a bit of a stretch. Likewise, as I understand it - which may not be as well as Tony does, but I'm borrowing from a post from Gary Mack somewhere - that the only actual testing was related to whether a shot might've been fired from the knoll area, and that there is nothing firmly tying any impulses to the 6th floor, or at least the 6th floor southeast window.

I am likewise also always amused by those who, citing a study that contradicted both BB&N and W&A (who reached essentially the same conclusion), call the acoustics/dictabelt evidence "completely discredited," as if either (1) there have been no other studies that refute the refutation, and (2) simply saying "it's wrong and here's why" is definitive in any way. By that measure, the WCR was "discredited" eons ago and in multiple and myriad ways ... yet along come those self-same people defending the Report while at the same decrying anyone who'll dare to defend what they say is "discredited."

"Discredit," it appears, is in the eye of the beholder.

I would have to agree with Fritz inasmuch as even if one "sniffs" a gun barrel and smells gunpowder/cordite/whatever, it does not tell you when it was fired, only that it was fired, and then only probably recently (and I have no idea how recent it would have to be before the smell of gunpowder was completely gone). Nevertheless, it would seem an elementary "test" to at least ensure that the gun had been fired, either or both by "sniffing" it and/or by checking for GSR. Any failure to do that - and document it - could certainly heap doubt upon the fact of whether it was fired at all, and if it wasn't, then my client couldn't possibly be guilty.

That they didn't sniff or look for GSR doesn't mean it wasn't there, and ONLY if it WASN'T there does that prove anything ... and we simply don't know the answer to that 'cuz nobody apparently looked or sniffed.

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The first thing that I notice is that the name "Jack" doesn't appear anywhere: how can anyone posit a "general collision in the vicinity of the 5th-floor stairwell" without mentioning the man who was standing "10 feet west of the west elevator," i.e., directly in the path of "the fleeing Oswald?" What difference does it make whether or not "the three blind mice" could see the stairwell from the southwest windows if Jack was standing right smack-dab there? He, on the other hand, was asked only if he'd seen Oswald, but not if he'd seen anybody at all come down the stairs.

Excellent point. I either did not know or had forgotten that Jack was not asked about seeing anyone else run down the stairs. Of course any honest witness would tell the inquiry if he saw ANYONE running down stairs in those crucial seconds, so either no one ran down those stairs or else Jack Daugherty obstructed justice by withholding vital evidence. He swore to tell the WHOLE truth.

Anyone who posits "no shooter" on the sixth floor has got to be nuts.

I submit that those who posit no shooter are simply refusing to make unwarranted inferential leaps.

The "scientific" analyses that were supposed to PROVE, beyond doubt, that shots were fired from the SN all turned out to be unmitigated Junk, including the accoustics. No human ear can hear gunshots on those tapes, and the National Academy of Sciences, after an extensive inquiry into the evidence, reached the conclusion that whatever noises can be detected there is no reason to believe that they are gunshots, and in any event they were not recorded until after the shooting in Dealey Plaza.

"Discredit," it appears, is in the eye of the beholder.

Good luck in discrediting the National Academy of Sciences.

if there was any intent on anyone's part to draw attention to the TSBD and away from any other locations, at least one shot must've been fired from there in order to accomplish that. ... why bother with the gun if you're not going to fire it? Again, no need to actually hit anything, just create noise.

No need to actually fire the rifle to achieve the same result. Anyone who sees a man aiming a rifle during a shooting is apt to believe that the rifle he sees must be the source of the shots. I'm sure you will correct me if I am wrong, Duke, but my recollection is that Howard Brennan, the star witness, testified that he did not actually see the rifle being fired.

There is likewise little or no doubt that a rifle that apparently hadn't been there before lunch was up there afterward; why bother with that if you're not going to at least use it as a prop during the actual shooting?

I know at least one proponent of No Shots from SN who does not dispute that the rifle may have been used as a prop during the shooting.

That they didn't sniff or look for GSR doesn't mean it wasn't there, and ONLY if it WASN'T there does that prove anything ... and we simply don't know the answer to that 'cuz nobody apparently looked or sniffed.

And consistent with the great tradition of American Justice, the police and prosecution must always get the benefit of doubt?

I say that there are good reasons to doubt that any shots were fired from the Sniper's nest.

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Gosh, so many quotes-within-quotes!! Where to begin ...?

... I either did not know or had forgotten that Jack was not asked about seeing anyone else run down the stairs. Of course any honest witness would tell the inquiry if he saw ANYONE running down stairs in those crucial seconds, so either no one ran down those stairs or else Jack Daugherty obstructed justice by withholding vital evidence. He swore to tell the WHOLE truth.
We all know that to be a joke: first, what potential suspect is ever going to provide "the whole truth" in such a way as he, himself, might become more of one? Also, how many times has a question been asked where the witness attempt to expound upon an answer and his questioner (prosecution or defense) cuts him or her off with a "yes or no, Mr. Carroll" or "Your Honor, please direct the witness to answer" comeback?

Anyway, no matter: these guys arguing the point on McAdams' site forgot about Jack being in Oswald's way entirely. And what makes anyone think Jack was an "honest witness" anyway?

Anyone who posits "no shooter" on the sixth floor has got to be nuts.
I submit that those who posit no shooter are simply refusing to make unwarranted inferential leaps. The "scientific" analyses that were supposed to PROVE, beyond doubt, that shots were fired from the SN all turned out to be unmitigated Junk, including the accoustics. No human ear can hear gunshots on those tapes, and the National Academy of Sciences, after an extensive inquiry into the evidence, reached the conclusion that whatever noises can be detected there is no reason to believe that they are gunshots, and in any event they were not recorded until after the shooting in Dealey Plaza.
"Discredit," it appears, is in the eye of the beholder.
Good luck in discrediting the National Academy of Sciences.
Perhaps I'm mistaken - and will stand corrected if so - but my understanding is that the "dictabelt sounds" were never used or intended to prove that shots came from the SN, but that one or more instead might have come from somewhere else. My understanding is also that there were no tests done to prove that any of the "impulses" came from anywhere other than the vicinity of the grassy knoll, or to determine where the origin of any such impulses may have been.

Do you actually have a position on this? If one needs "good luck discrediting the National Academy of Sciences," then by that measure, all things government-issued are at all times beyond reproach, always correct, should be taken at face value, never questioned, and be considered the epitome of all forms of every kind of exactitude. Fair enough.

Why, then, are you here? To prove the irrefutable to the irresolute? Shoot, man, the case was "closed" on November 25, 1963: why, then are you still arguing for or against it? It's done. The government got it right the first time, the second time, the third time ... and every time when it didn't get it quite right, its inferences were correct even if its math wasn't. "I ain't often right, but I've never been wrong ...?"

When one puts "national" in front of "science," whatever its academy propounds must absolutely be the truth. Has it ever made any other judgments or submissions (assuming that it even has to!) that has or have failed peer review? Or does it, in fact, have any "peers?" You seem to think not. I suspect there are scientists who might disagree. I think perhaps even that one or two have ...!

There is no axiom nor law that says that all the good scientists work in any one place. Each and all of them are human and therefore error-prone. Those at MIT can err as well and as much as those at RPI or NAS, and vice-versa. NAS not subject to peer review because "national" has no peer? Then, AMA/JAMA got it right, too, and nobody has any business arguing their conclusions!

"Good luck," indeed.

if there was any intent on anyone's part to draw attention to the TSBD and away from any other locations, at least one shot must've been fired from there in order to accomplish that. ... why bother with the gun if you're not going to fire it? Again, no need to actually hit anything, just create noise.
No need to actually fire the rifle to achieve the same result. Anyone who sees a man aiming a rifle during a shooting is apt to believe that the rifle he sees must be the source of the shots. I'm sure you will correct me if I am wrong, Duke, but my recollection is that Howard Brennan, the star witness, testified that he did not actually see the rifle being fired.
Howard Brennan was looking in the wrong direction to have ever seen anything in the TSBD being fired anyway, which explains why he didn't "actually" see anything. If the Z-film is "altered," why didn't the all-knowing reconstructionist at least turn him around so he wasn't looking to the east? Surely putting a face - anyone's! - beneath a hard-hat wouldn't have been as hard as the other things that "they did!"
There is likewise little or no doubt that a rifle that apparently hadn't been there before lunch was up there afterward; why bother with that if you're not going to at least use it as a prop during the actual shooting?
I know at least one proponent of No Shots from SN who does not dispute that the rifle may have been used as a prop during the shooting.
Why NOT at least fire the gun, if for no other reason to ensure that everyone's recollection was NOT focused on the records building, Dal-Tex or the knoll (or wherever else)? Visual stimulus is only valid insofar as those who'd actually SEEN something; more people heard than saw anything. Audio works in all directions, video only when being looked at. Noise will always attract more attention than mere visibility. Surely you're not suggesting that anyone other than Oswald would count more upon people looking up than on hearing something coming from a particular direction, are you?
That they didn't sniff or look for GSR doesn't mean it wasn't there, and ONLY if it WASN'T there does that prove anything ... and we simply don't know the answer to that 'cuz nobody apparently looked or sniffed.
And consistent with the great tradition of American Justice, the police and prosecution must always get the benefit of doubt? I say that there are good reasons to doubt that any shots were fired from the Sniper's nest.

No, sir: the defendant always gets the benefit of doubt.

The point is that sniffing/looking only eliminates the possiblity that the weapon was fired: no smell, no GSR, no shots. DPD apparently didn't eliminate that negative possibility. Nevertheless, Fritz was correct in saying that a smell or the appearance of GSR does not tell you if the gun was fired at 11:00, 1:00, on Friday, or on Tuesday, or at 3:00 a.m. the previous Sunday (presuming the smell would remain that long).

GSR would prove that the gun was fired; the smell might suggest when it was fired within certain time limits (the duration of the smell under prevailing circumstances), but neither would be able to show that it was fired at 12:30 on Friday, November 22, to the exclusion of all other dates and times, much less locations.

The lack of either might prove that it hadn't been fired at any time, but what was extant could only prove that it was fired ... but beyond that, absolutely nothing else. Prove to me otherwise.

Personally, I posit that shot(s) were, indeed, fired from the SN ... but I'm not convinced that they hit anything of significance, were intended to (and if they weren't, but did, it was a bonus!), nor that your favorite Marxist and mine pulled any triggers that day.

On the other hand, I can think of absolutely no other reason to put a gun on the sixth floor and hang it out a window without firing it unless you were betting on pure, dumb luck and knew the house was gonna fold.

I think the stakes were too high for such a bet.

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The "scientific" analyses that were supposed to PROVE, beyond doubt, that shots were fired from the SN all turned out to be unmitigated Junk, including the accoustics. No human ear can hear gunshots on those tapes, and the National Academy of Sciences, after an extensive inquiry into the evidence, reached the conclusion that whatever noises can be detected there is no reason to believe that they are gunshots, and in any event they were not recorded until after the shooting in Dealey Plaza.

Sorry to disagree with you Mr. Carroll but I’ve studied the dictabelt recordings and came to the conclusion that it was edited at some point to include the sounds of a moving motorcycle. With a few edits to eliminate the moving motorcycle sounds you hear a radio broadcast, “Ok Jack” then a few seconds later a pop like a firecracker, a few seconds pass then a volley of shots continues within a 4 second period. The volley of shots came from different weapons at different locations including the distinctive sounds of shots from a rifle.

The person responsible for jamming the police radio channel in Dealey Plaza was on a motorcycle that was idling during the shooting. IMO, the idling motorcycle was in the area of the underpass.

Don

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"The point is that sniffing/looking only eliminates the possiblity that the weapon was fired: no smell, no GSR, no shots. DPD apparently didn't eliminate that negative possibility. Nevertheless, Fritz was correct in saying that a smell or the appearance of GSR does not tell you if the gun was fired at 11:00, 1:00, on Friday, or on Tuesday, or at 3:00 a.m. the previous Sunday (presuming the smell would remain that long).

GSR would prove that the gun was fired; the smell might suggest when it was fired within certain time limits (the duration of the smell under prevailing circumstances), but neither would be able to show that it was fired at 12:30 on Friday, November 22, to the exclusion of all other dates and times, much less locations."

Duke,

Senator Yarborough smelled smoke. That had to be immediately after the shooting (time frame), for the smoke to have lingered, right? To me it also proved shots down near the ground in Dealey Plaza. Also, I don't think that, in 1963, Mr. Day was talking about exact science when he discussed whether it could be determined if a gun had been fired "today. yesterday or last month". That was CYOB talk. The smell of gunpowder would have been VERY strong in the barrel that soon after the shooting, would it not? It would say that the gun had been fired very recently. It could not, as you say, give an exact time that the gun fired.

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I’ve studied the dictabelt recordings and came to the conclusion that it was edited at some point to include the sounds of a moving motorcycle.

Don

At this stage of the game the accoustic issue boils down to two sides Arguing from Authority. In this case the ultimate jury is the American people, and the question before them is whether either authority can be believed and, if so, which one.

The National Academy of Sciences (rightly, IMHO) carries more weight with this jury than any other scientific person, group or body, and I am not holding my breath waiting for a more persuasive authority to come along and PROVE that specially-trained ears and apparatuses (apparatii?) can detect gunshots from the snipers Nest.

Especially since there are other reasons besides the unanimous opinion of a panel of experts assembeled by the National Academy of Sciences to doubt that there were ANY gunshots from the Sniper's Nest that day.

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Anyway, no matter: these guys arguing the point on McAdams' site forgot about Jack being in Oswald's way entirely.

I will post your comments on the McAdams forum when I get a spare moment.

And what makes anyone think Jack was an "honest witness" anyway?

Indeed.

Howard Brennan was looking in the wrong direction to have ever seen anything in the TSBD being fired anyway, which explains why he didn't "actually" see anything.

Racking my memory for DIRECT EVIDENCE of a shot or shots from the SN, all I can think of are some earwitnesses, and Richard Randolph Carr, the high school kid who claimed to have seen the rifle fire. It seems that hardly anyone, including even the warren Commission, considered him reliable.

If the Z-film is "altered," why didn't the all-knowing reconstructionist at least turn him around so he wasn't looking to the east?

Let's not go there, or we will have David Healey stomping all over us.

On the other hand, I can think of absolutely no other reason to put a gun on the sixth floor and hang it out a window without firing it unless you were betting on pure, dumb luck and knew the house was gonna fold.

I think the stakes were too high for such a bet.

The impression I have is that JFK's killers took chances that boggle the minds of most ordinary decent people, regardless of race creed or educational status.

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... Senator Yarborough smelled smoke. That had to be immediately after the shooting (time frame), for the smoke to have lingered, right? To me it also proved shots down near the ground in Dealey Plaza.
At what precise location was he when he smelled the smoke? How long after the first - or any - shot did he smell it? Was there sufficient time for the odor to have reached that spot in that amount of time? Which direction did it drift from? In what direction - up or down or level - does such an odor normally drift? What was the wind speed and direction that day? Did LBJ's limo remain in the plaza long enough for the odor to have reached him?

Absent knowing the answers to those questions (and probably several others), at best we can say that Ralph Yarborough thought he smelled smoke, but even if it did, it neither tells us where the smell came from nor from what gun it emanated. While it may "make sense" to us that he'd more likely smell it if fired from nearby and in front of him - and thus him driving through it - than it does that it came from 75 yards away while he was driving away from us, it unfortunately proves nothing.

Also, I don't think that, in 1963, Mr. Day was talking about exact science when he discussed whether it could be determined if a gun had been fired "today. yesterday or last month". That was CYOB talk. The smell of gunpowder would have been VERY strong in the barrel that soon after the shooting, would it not? It would say that the gun had been fired very recently. It could not, as you say, give an exact time that the gun fired.
Define "strong." Put it on a scale of 1 to 10. Is your "6" the same as my "6" or might I think it's a "4" or an "8?"

If it hadn't been fired for a week, I'd imagine the smell of gunpowder to have been very slight to non-existant; if it was "strong," it might as easily have been fired at 10:00 on the Trinity River bottoms as at 12:30 in Dealey Plaza, or Thursday as easily as on Friday.

I'm more surprised that a visual GSR check wasn't made than I am that a "smell test" wasn't. At least with the former, it could at least be said that the gun had been fired or that it had not been fired. Finding a "clean" gun in my nightstand hardly even suggests, much less proves, that I killed my wife in the bed beside me with it; maybe I used the one I keep in the living room. But hey, found a gun, got our man, right? At least a visual check would've confirmed that it had been fired, something I'd think any jury would want to know.

My opinion is that C2766 was fired from the sixth floor that day; Ray's is that it wasn't. We may each have "reasonable" grounds for each opinion, but neither of us can prove it one way or another to the other: the actual evidence doesn't exist. Hell of a way to run a homicide department, don't you think?

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Howard Brennan was looking in the wrong direction to have ever seen anything in the TSBD being fired anyway, which explains why he didn't "actually" see anything.
Racking my memory for DIRECT EVIDENCE of a shot or shots from the SN, all I can think of are some earwitnesses, and Richard Randolph Carr, the high school kid who claimed to have seen the rifle fire. It seems that hardly anyone, including even the warren Commission, considered him reliable.
I recall something from aeons ago - I think by Gary Mack, but maybe not - about someone going to the location where Carr was supposed to have been, and observing that the TSBD couldn't be seen from there. Based on that, presuming it's correctness, I'd have to eliminate Carr from consideration.

As to Dickie Worrell, even while I published something that showed that he could have at least gotten to Elm & Houston in time to see the motorcade, a close reading of it will tell you that it was only possible under certain circumstances involving the bus schedule - de jure AND de facto - and then only if everything went into place exactly. There was no room for error or delay.

In truth, you will not find a photo or movie showing Dickie where he claimed to be; in fact, he should be visible in Altgens 5 as plain as day, unless my memory fails me. Possibly also the Hughes film, unless I'm thinking of another one (it came up in discussion about Roy Truly's entry into the TSBD after the shooting; don't recall the thread, but it was fairly recent). There's no photographic proof of his being there, and a fair amount of photographic disproof.

There is only one "eyewitness" report of his running across Houston Street, and that's Sam Pate, who didn't even start driving toward Dealey Plaza from Stemmons at High Line until JFK's limo had passed by that location on its way to Parkland; Dickie said he started running after the first shot, before the limo had even gotten out of the plaza, so whomever Sam saw, it wasn't Worrell.

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Anyway, no matter: these guys arguing the point on McAdams' site forgot about Jack being in Oswald's way entirely.

[...]

If the Z-film is "altered," why didn't the all-knowing reconstructionist at least turn him around so he wasn't looking to the east?

[...]

Let's not go there, or we will have David Healey stomping all over us.

thats Healy, Mr. Carroll. Btw, when folks are told of Brennan's 'physical' position at the corner of Elm and Huston (in the Zapruder film), most can't find him -- so, he's non-starter subject matter when it comes to possible Z-film alteration. Looking away from the TSBD does not do Brennan's credibility any good

Edited by David G. Healy
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As far as interpreting the "smell" of gunpowder, am I incorrect that the primary/most prominent olfactory component of burned gunpowder is sulfur?

If so, would not the sound of ANYTHING that resembled a shot, accompanied by a sulfurous smell, lend itself to interpretation as a possible gunshot? What I'm saying is, since witnesses thought the first sounds they heard sounded like firecrackers, is it not possible that perhaps there actually were one or more firecrackers set off in DP...thus adding to the confusion, and also accounting for the gunpowder that Yarborough smelled at ground level?

Obviously, at this late date it would be impossible to prove either way...but perhaps the reason several witnesses to the shooting mentioned firecrackers is that there actually were firecrackers being set off by bystanders along the parade route? Of course, firecrackers wouldn't have been a problem, except for the actual shooting that occurred. So perhaps what Yarborough smelled was the airborne residue from an exploded firecracker at ground level, rather than actual gunshot residue...maybe the sound of a firecracker WAS just a firecracker and not a gunshot, but it occurred at the time and place of the actual gunshots.

I don't think we're actually going to discover much of value about what smell was where 45 years ago. As far as GSR inside the barrel of the rifle...well...the DPD didn't want to prove that the rifle HADN'T been fired; and the only thing provable by GSR in the barrel would be that the absence of GSR would show the gun hadn't been fired since its last cleaning. That's evidence the DPD certainly didn't want to find, so they purposely didn't look for it...IMHO.

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... As far as GSR inside the barrel of the rifle...well...the DPD didn't want to prove that the rifle HADN'T been fired; and the only thing provable by GSR in the barrel would be that the absence of GSR would show the gun hadn't been fired since its last cleaning. That's evidence the DPD certainly didn't want to find, so they purposely didn't look for it...IMHO.
Ah, so! This removes us immediately from mere incompetence at the outset and lands us smack-dab in the middle of a well-hatched plot involving the very souls who were looking for one! Weren't they saying within hours that it was a Communist plot? Didn't they spend the next several weeks searching for those nefarious scoundrels, albeit to no avail? Why waste so much time and manpower in such an intensive investigation if they knew all along that Oswald didn't do it? It simply makes no sense whatsoever. Sorry, ain't buyin' into that one, no sir.
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Looking away from the TSBD does not do Brennan's credibility any good

Thank you, Mr. Healy, that is a very important point considering the title of this thread. After reviewing Duke Lane's post, I think we are agreed that a shot or shots from the SN, if there were any, can only be proved by circumstantial evidence.

The problem back in 1976 was that this circumstantial evidence is open to two diametrically opposite interpretations, in one of which the rifle and ballistics evidence is all phony. G. Robert Blakey thought he could plug this hole in the official story by introducing Guinn's bullet lead opinions -- proving that CE399 & the limo fragments were NOT planted -- and the acoustics evidence which proved that there were three shots from the sniper's nest.

Well both of these "scientific" proofs have been declared inadmissible. The bullet lead theory has been uniformly rejected as junk science by State and Federal Courts, while the HSCA acoustics opinions have been declared junk by the National Academy of Science, and consequently would almost certainly fail to pass muster as admissible evidence in American Courts, under the guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court in the case of Daubert V. Merrill Dow.

It is possible that the Tague shot came from the TSBD, which is in line with Duke's approach, but I am not entirely convinced it did. In any event, now that the foundations of the HSCA's conclusions have collapsed, it is again respectable to argue that there were no shots from the Sniper's Nest, just as Josiah Thompson and other critics were suggesting back in the late '60's/early '70's.

Going back to Howard Brennan, I wonder if anyone knows of, or can post a link to, a video or gif that allows us to see a close-up of Brennan in the Z-Film?

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