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Second Floor Shooter


Don Bailey
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For those of you that have asked the question: "Was there a shooter on the 2nd floor of the County Records Building?" I say yes there were at least 2 shots fired from one of the two windows on the 2nd floor. After reading Hugh McDonald’s book, “Appointment in Dallas” it peaked my interest in the possibility of a shooter on the 2nd floor and noticed in some of the films and pictures that both of the windows are open with someone waving outside of the right window. In 1993, I sent a team of investigators to take pictures from inside of this office on the 2nd floor and it turns out to be a small office space occupied by two people with both windows in this small work area. (See attached photo)

My opinion of the autopsy photos shows two wounds to Kennedy that seem to have come from the 2nd floor of the Records Building, his back wound and the first shot to his head.

Don

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For those of you that have asked the question: "Was there a shooter on the 2nd floor of the County Records Building?" I say yes there were at least 2 shots fired from one of the two windows on the 2nd floor. After reading Hugh McDonald’s book, “Appointment in Dallas” it peaked my interest in the possibility of a shooter on the 2nd floor and noticed in some of the films and pictures that both of the windows are open with someone waving outside of the right window. In 1993, I sent a team of investigators to take pictures from inside of this office on the 2nd floor and it turns out to be a small office space occupied by two people with both windows in this small work area. (See attached photo)

My opinion of the autopsy photos shows two wounds to Kennedy that seem to have come from the 2nd floor of the Records Building, his back wound and the first shot to his head.

Don

Like this guy Don?

Daltexshootergif2.gif

Duncan

That's the Dal-Tex shooter, not to be confused with the County Records Building Shooter.

Don

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Guest Gary Loughran

Ashton Gray once upon a time posited a shot from a higher floor than the second floor of the records building. He also posted some useful views at the time.

They can be found here and given the work of Lee Forman and others might be timely to ressurrect.

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Ashton Gray once upon a time posited a shot from a higher floor than the second floor of the records building. He also posted some useful views at the time.

They can be found here and given the work of Lee Forman and others might be timely to ressurrect.

Credit Lee Forman:

Muchmore image showing anomily in Records building window.

Hughes frame:

Willis:

Edited by Robin Unger
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A very interesting thread. Again - although I had read Appointment in Dallas, it wasn't until I read Judyth Vary Baker's books that I became more interested myself.

Two Questions:

1. Is the office layout the same at the time of Don's photo as it was in 1963 - 2 windows per office?

If that is the case, then two separate offices had windows opened at the time - the 2 at left being one office, the two at right, another. Also worth mentioning - at the time Hughes captured the Records building during his aftermath filming, it appears that a window on the first floor is also open.

2. Is it at all possible to determine who had ownership of these 2 offices in 1963?

Today it appears that the offices of the court clerk are on the 2nd floor, also vital statistics and property records.

Using Roberdeau's Plat for witnesses closest to this position outside the records building:

Mrs. PEARL SPRINGER - useless.

Mrs. ERIC (CAROLYN) WALTHER - about the same. More interesting remarks about the TSBD.

There was a pause after the first report, then a second and third report almost at the same time, and then a pause followed by at least one and possibly more reports. The noise seemed to come from up in the air, but she never looked up in that direction.

James N. Crawford - worked in the records building, but on the ground floor. I haven't seen Crawford's FBI Affidavit, but his Warren testimony is also not helpful for a shot coming from the records building.

Mary ann Mitchell - was with James Crawford and also worked in Records - she says basement office - no help.

Miss. MITCHELL - Either way. We were out of the office such a short time because we had spotters in the building so we would know when the parade was coming and we could run out. We had so many people in the building who worked there upstairs and they called us when it was coming so we could go outside.

Edgar Leon Smith. Jr - DPD. No help.

T.E. MOORE, Deputy District Court Clerk, Records Building.

Mr. MOORE stated that at the sound of the first shot, he looked up toward the Texas School Book Depository because the shot sounded like it had come from a high area, however, he did not observe anything noteworthy at the Texas School Book Depository.

Not much noteworthy - there is a bot of correlation in these accounts in that they were directed to either the knoll or the TSBD as the source of the shots. If a shot was fired from Records - it 'sounds' as if it would have to have been with the use of a silencer.

Don has Ayneworth directly below these windows - but I am unsure as to how he arrived at that. I don't expect any help from Aynesworth anyway - but this is a curiosity.

Aside:

It's very interesting to note that the epileptic seizure took place at approximately 12:15pm CT, almost directly across from the Records Building. So what with the help of 'spotters' in the building to notify employees of the arrival of the motorcade so that they could watch it [Mary Ann Mitchell], there may have indeed been method to the madness of the timing of Jerry Belknap's seizure as a diversion to gain access to the building.

In the animated sequence I put together [but cannot load just yet] it appears that someone in the Records Building window is waving a white gloved hand - hard to tell, but looks funny. Laughing at how difficult this is to illustrate...in the Willis crop, assuming that these are 2 separate offices, then both are occupied by folks looking out the window. In the one at left, there are obvious fleshtones - the one at the right seems like a white glove. The shadow is apparent, but there is an absence of color. It's a poor demonstration - the animated gif is better.

One more bit to have a look at - which includes those witnesses standing opposite the building, in addition to creating an animated sequence of the frames available as the press car was passing the building.

Edited by Lee Forman
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Don/Lee

Too bad the quality of the films (as usual) suck.

I created this stabilization of the County Records Building from Muchmore awhile back.

Did it with Hughes also, but the angle cuts down alot of the movement.

chris

Hey Chris!

I am looking forward to viewing it - for whatever reason, even after downloading and updating the latest and greatest QT - I don't seem to be able to view the file.

I was working with screen captures - which were at the whim of unknown forces - so it took a number of attempts to get anything of value [but still higher quality than the Groden DVD] so a screen capture will already suffer - and then converting these to JPEGs - the program I am using caused them further degradation. I am thinking about going back to ULEAD GIF animator. Here's Hughes - Take 1.

- lee

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It’s amazing to see that others have an interest in this topic and have studied the 2nd floor CRB shooter location. Thanks to everyone for the pictures and information.

Lee: The people in that office said they did not work there in 1963 and as far as they knew their office has always been the same office with the 2 center windows. It has always been my belief a silencer was used at this location. When you view the Willis close-up it shows 2 people in the right center window and an arm out the left center window.

Ronald Fischer worked in the Records Building and told the WC this interesting piece of advice from his boss:

Mr. FISCHER - Oh, about---well, let's see. We got off for lunch at a quarter of twelve and Mr. Lynn, our boss, said that we could take go ahead and go on down the street after we got through with lunch, in other words, don't come back to the office after lunch. Just go on down the street and watch the parade. Everybody was due back after the parade was over.

IMO, this verbal memo to stay out of the building was passed on to all of the employees so they can allow a shooter team to enter the building, set up, shoot and escape undetected.

Don

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Some of the other witnesses to the shooter on the 2nd floor of the County Records Building were never heard from again or were made to look like a participant in the conspiracy.

Jim Hicks, the man who stood on the west side of Houston across from the CRB gave his statement at the Orleans Parish Grand Jury Trial on 01-11-68:

GARRISON: Where were you standing Jim?

HICKS: Right in here approximately. The shots seemed to me like they came over the top of my head. The sign that was here was approximately here.

GARRISON: How long did it take before they removed the sign?

HICKS: It was within thirty minutes.

Beers photographed the removed signs Hicks spoke about around 2:30 when the three hobos are marched through Dealey Plaza.

A few of the people standing on the north side of Elm are people I’d like to speak with but there is no record of their identities. In the Altgens 6 photo, you see 3 women looking away from the limo that just passed by… 2 of the 3 women together are looking up in the direction of the 2nd floor of the CRB. It is my opinion these women observed the shooter in the CRB.

Don

post-5824-1223543676_thumb.jpg

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Some of the other witnesses to the shooter on the 2nd floor of the County Records Building were never heard from again or were made to look like a participant in the conspiracy.

Jim Hicks, the man who stood on the west side of Houston across from the CRB gave his statement at the Orleans Parish Grand Jury Trial on 01-11-68:

GARRISON: Where were you standing Jim?

HICKS: Right in here approximately. The shots seemed to me like they came over the top of my head. The sign that was here was approximately here.

GARRISON: How long did it take before they removed the sign?

HICKS: It was within thirty minutes.

Beers photographed the removed signs Hicks spoke about around 2:30 when the three hobos are marched through Dealey Plaza.

A few of the people standing on the north side of Elm are people I’d like to speak with but there is no record of their identities. In the Altgens 6 photo, you see 3 women looking away from the limo that just passed by… 2 of the 3 women together are looking up in the direction of the 2nd floor of the CRB. It is my opinion these women observed the shooter in the CRB.

Don

Hey Don.

I don't mean to rain on the parade, however:

Jim Hicks pointed out things to Garrison for which I have never found any kind of record. "Here" and "Here" are meaningless. From what I gathered, I once "assumed" it was one of the smaller signs attached to the Stemmons Freeway sign. I don't know that anyone has successfully demonstrated that as fact - so what would be more likely would be the street signs a bit closer to the corner of the Elm St extension - which are hardly covered anywhere for a before-and-after view.

The signs in the Beers photo appear to be of the nature of the temporary "No Parking signs" which were put up all around the motorcade route.

If there was an individual in Records using a silencer - I would be much more interested in the original tenants of that office, and what they may have encountered upon their return - eg, smell of gundpowder. It seems clear from reading the various accounts I collected together in a previous post here - in their entirety - that shots sounded loudly from the parking area on the 'mall' and the TSBD - drawing all attention away from the Records Building entirely. The witnesses seen looking in a different direction could be reacting to the sound of a shot fired from the TSBD - nice and loud. From that location one would imagine that the DalTex would provide a very nice reflection for the sound of that shot.

- lee

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for the hell of it...

Using Roberdeau's plat - we see that the area of z223 just comes into view - with the large concrete structure no longer blocking the view from the righthandmost windows on the 2nd floor Records. And with respect to z313 - the furthermost windows of the record building may have had a clear view - its a difficult prospect given the growth of the trees in that part over the past 40+ years.

Rice and beans,

- lee

Edit: Don, I believe that you can safely remove that odd vehicle parked along the fence. Although it pains me to say it, I believe that Tim was mistaken. It was made very clear to me by Jim Conner that this was a driving lane in 1963 - and based upon my own experiments and working with Robin Unger - I believe that I was mistaken as well. The car seen in Nix is not entirely visible from the vantage point of Mary Moorman - and is in all likelihood parked in a lane away from the fence, as seen in one of the Murray aftermath photos. It is the difference in perspective which created the confusion - as Nix was at a different elevation than Moorman.

Edited by Lee Forman
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Gary Mack sent a message informing me about a tree blocking the view of a shot from the 2nd floor CRB. So I guess we should call it quits with this new information… NOT.

The Texas Live Oak on the southern part of Elm in 1963 had openings between the lower branches making it possible for a shot from the 2nd floor CRB.

The attached photo shows the tree and windows view from a higher level near the area of the head shot point of impact from the 2nd floor CRB shooter, also seen in the z-312 frame.

Don

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