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Professor Fetzer,

In the Judyth Baker thread you’ve touted as fact the claim of Noel Twyman in his book Bloody Treason that one of the DPD photos of the snipers nest shows that one of 3 supposedly empty rifle cartridges is actually a live round. Twyman bases this claim on examination of a single poor reproduction of a DPD crime scene photograph taken of the snipers nest looking east to west.

But there is another photograph taken of the snipers nest and the shells that apparently neither Twyman nor you are aware of.

That photograph is taken of the snipers nest looking west to east. It appears on page 525 of Richard Trask’s Pictures of the Pain, and can be more readily viewed here…

http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/met.../m1/1/sizes/xl/

The enlargement of that photograph below rather clearly shows that the cartridge case is empty.

Todd

post-6289-1274450174_thumb.jpg

Edited by Todd W. Vaughan
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Professor Fetzer,

In the Judyth Baker thread you’ve touted as fact the claims of Noel Twyman in his book Bloody Treason that one of the DPD photos of the snipers nest shows that one of 3 supposedly empty rifle cartridges is actually a live round. Twyman bases this claim on examination of a single poor reproduction of a DPD crime scene photograph taken of the snipers nest looking east to west.

But there is another photograph taken of the snipers nest and the shells that apparently neither Twyman nor you are aware of.

That photograph is taken of the snipers nest looking west to east. It appears on page 525 of Richard Trask’s Pictures of the Pain, and can be more readily viewed here…

http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/met.../m1/1/sizes/xl/

The enlargement of that photograph below rather clearly shows that the cartridge case is empty.

Todd

Todd,

Of course you are right. This theory went out the window years ago, and Fetzer knows that. Its as ridiculous as the 6 lands and grooves idea.

It was an attempt to distract the the predicament he found himself in during the velocity debacle. Nothing more.

Mike

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I must say that while "Bloody Treason" is my favorite book on the assassination (I dont say that lightly as I have read and own a large library of books on the assassintaion) Twyman is wrong on this issue

Like Todd pointed out I saw the picture he just posted in POTP and knew that it was a shell within seconds of seeing the picture

I am in no way saying this discredits Twyman or his amazing book, he was just wrong on this issue

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I must say that while "Bloody Treason" is my favorite book on the assassination (I dont say that lightly as I have read and own a large library of books on the assassintaion) Twyman is wrong on this issue

Like Todd pointed out I saw the picture he just posted in POTP and knew that it was a shell within seconds of seeing the picture

I am in no way saying this discredits Twyman or his amazing book, he was just wrong on this issue

Dean,

Of course you are correct. We can not and should not dismiss someone in entirety because of one inaccuracy. The case is far to complex for that!

Best to you my friend!

(and I am still waiting on that article!)

Mike

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(and I am still waiting on that article!)

I have been racking my brain as to what I can write that will speak up to defend my side of the gun/ballistics issue

I have not thought of anything yet :lol:

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I must say that while "Bloody Treason" is my favorite book on the assassination (I dont say that lightly as I have read and own a large library of books on the assassintaion) Twyman is wrong on this issue

Like Todd pointed out I saw the picture he just posted in POTP and knew that it was a shell within seconds of seeing the picture

I am in no way saying this discredits Twyman or his amazing book, he was just wrong on this issue

Dean,

Of course you are correct. We can not and should not dismiss someone in entirety because of one inaccuracy. The case is far to complex for that!

Best to you my friend!

(and I am still waiting on that article!)

Mike

complex? What's so complex about intitial FBI/SS findings 3-shots 3-hits?

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not much, they were just out by one shot and hit

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(and I am still waiting on that article!)

I have been racking my brain as to what I can write that will speak up to defend my side of the gun/ballistics issue

I have not thought of anything yet :lol:

Dean,

It does not have to be about ballistics at all, I just ask that if it is, it be accurate. Other than that feel free to write about anything regarding the case!

Mike

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SPECIAL REQUEST TO JOHN SIMKIN AND EVAN BURTON ABOUT HIJACKING THREADS

John and Evan,

Anyone who has followed this thread is aware that Josiah Thompson and Mike Williams have no

knowledge or interest in the subject of this thread but are here for the plain and simple reason

of wanting to attack, ridicule, and belittle me, regardless of the merits of their case. They have

hijacked this thread devoted to Judyth Vary Baker, which is both unprofessional but also easily

predicable for those with any familiarity with their character. This conduct on their part--which

I inadvertently encouraged by responding to one of Mike Williams' posts--not only undermines

the efforts of those who are seriously concerned with Judyth's credibility but sets a very poor

example for other threads where, if this kind of conduct is tolerated here, it may be expected

to occur on other threads at other times for other reasons. I therefore formally request that a

neutral party--Evan Burton would be fine!--review the past 100 posts or so and remove them

from this thread and add them to some other. I know that Williams and Thompson created a

thread, "Fetzer and Ballistics 101", for the obvious reasons. That might be a suitable location

for these posts, since they are assailing me, often in relation to questions of ballistics. I have

no problem with being attacked: it goes with the territory! But it is extremely unfair to me and

to Judyth and to everyone else, such as Jack White, Michael Hogan, Pamela Brown, David Lifton

Douglas Weldon, Stephen Roy, Pat Speer, Gregory Burnham, Dean Hagerman, Barb Junkkarinen,

and many others--to have the thread taken over by parties with no serious interest in its subject.

I therefore request in the interest of fair-play that irrelevant posts, including mine, be moved to

another location, where the parties are welcome to continue to assail me to their heart's content.

With appreciation,

Jim

One of the most maddening features of trying to discuss anything with Professor Fetzer is his unvarying posture of never admitting he is wrong about anything. Over the course of the last few years he has been proved wrong again and again but refuses to admit it. Years ago, he began saying that two not three cartridge cases were found on the 6th Floor near the sniper’s nest. This claim was contradicted by numerous statements from law enforcement and non-law enforcement personnel. It was also contradicted by crime scene photos and the sworn testimony of numerous DPD personnel. Fetzer based his claim on several pages of a book published by a friend of his named Noel Twyman. The book was called Bloody Treason and, if memory serves, was self-published. Years ago, when the book first came out, Twyman’s argument was examined and found to be vacuous; he simply misinterpreted the documents and photos he presented as backing his claim. Fetzer knew of all this because he was part of the discussion.

Now he brings back the same argument referring the reader to specific pages in Twyman’s book. Earlier on this thread, I took the time and trouble to deal with each reference Fetzer made and showed why it did not prove what Fetzer said it proved. Fetzer’s response? He simply ignored what was pointed out and asked that further questions from me or Mike Williams be banned from this thread. This is a familiar Fetzer gambit. If you show he is irretrievably mistaken, he simply ignores what you say and starts another line of argument as a distraction.

I am not going to let that happen here. Todd Vaughan started a new thread entitled, “THE TWYMAN/FETZER SHELL GAME” where the focus is precisely on this shell game Fetzer has been playing. I am going to post on that thread an extremely specific refutation of Fetzer’s claims. First, I will quote what Fetzer said. Second, I will scan and post the document or photo that he cites. Third, I will explain why and how Fetzer has misrepresented what is there.

This will take some time and effort to produce. However, it will be worth it if it throws a spotlight onto a gambit that hurts all of us. Contaminating the evidence field with non-sensical claims hinders research and is embarrassing to all of us. We all have a vested interest in bringing this sort of thing to a swift end.

Of course, when one starts a line of argument one may not know that the evidence relied upon is either phony or wrongly interpreted. But once this has been shown (and shown definitively) it is simply dishonorable to keep making the same old bankrupt arguments to save face. As we’ll see, this is precisely what Fetzer has been doing. If you are interested in this, please shift gears and take a look at “THE TWYMAN/FETZER SHELL GAME.”

Josiah Thompson

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One of the most maddening features of trying to discuss anything with Professor Fetzer is his unvarying posture of never admitting he is wrong about anything. Over the course of the last few years he has been proved wrong again and again but refuses to admit it. Years ago, he began saying that two not three cartridge cases were found on the 6th Floor near the sniper’s nest. This claim was contradicted by numerous statements from law enforcement and non-law enforcement personnel. It was also contradicted by crime scene photos and the sworn testimony of numerous DPD personnel. Fetzer based his claim on several pages of a book published by a friend of his named Noel Twyman. The book was called Bloody Treason and, if memory serves, was self-published. Years ago, when the book first came out, Twyman’s argument was examined and found to be vacuous; he simply misinterpreted the documents and photos he presented as backing his claim. Fetzer knew of all this because he was part of the discussion.

Tink,

Noel Twyman is also my friend. For the record, I confronted him with this dispute years ago and advanced (as devil's advocate) the theories that you and others expressed. Noel stood by his original conclusions and was unwavering in his conviction. His position is unequivocal and firmly based not just on the photographic interpretation, but on witness interviews that he conducted. I haven't communicated with him in a while, but I would be very surprised if he changed his position. Noel is known for his attention to detail--and has voluntarily corrected errors and omissions without being requested to do so. It is the nature of his personality. He has nothing to prove and no image of himself to which he must cling.

But alas, we post erroneously to a thread about Judyth Vary Baker.

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A few days ago on the Judyth/Fetzer thread I posted this detailed critique of Fetzer’s claim (taken from Twyman) that two, not three, cartridge cases were found on the 6th Floor near the sniper’s nest. I quote in extenso Fetzer’s claims and follow this with my critique in italics, bold.

QUOTE (James H. Fetzer @ May 20 2010, 09:17 PM) My comments are in italics, bold:

The evidence photographs published in Noel Twyman's BLOODY TREASON (1997) show two spent casings and one unspent cartridge, [if you are referring to the photo of the live round and two casings on a desk (page 111), what I've said before applies: these are rounds sent to the FBI on Friday night. If you are referring to the crime scene photos that Twyman incorrectly claims show a live round and two cartridge cases at the crime scene, then you are just wrong. As demonstrated by the article from the MacAdams site, close-up photos show dramatically that what Twyman and you have claimed to be a live round is really a cartridge case. The crime scene photos then show three cartridge cases.] where the photos are substantiated by a exhibits (documents) on page 110 (an FBI agent's note of two hulls and one "live" round were found), [Once again, Professor, thou speakest with a forked tongue. The document you reference is an evidence envelope with the notation: "2 negatives & 4 prints of each of two 8.5 bullet hulls & 1 'live' round of 6.5 ammunition -- from the rifle found on 6th floor of Texas School Book Depository, Dallas on 11-22-63." It does not say that 2 cases and 1 live round were found on the 6th Floor. Once again, the photos are there to memorialize the transfer of these materials to the FBI and prove nothing about what was found on the 6th floor.] on page 112 (the original Oswald "evidence sheet" showing one "live" and 2 spent rounds were found) [You carefully omit, Professor, what Twyman published on the very next page, page 113. On this next page, Twyman prints a later draft of the same page which has numerous changes in language including a change in the number of "6.5 spent rounds" from (2) to (3). It is obvious that these are earlier and later drafts since corrections are made and information added in the later draft. The correct draft is the later one where three "6.5 spend rounds" are mentioned.] , and on page 116 (a DPD report dated 11-22-63 stating two spent hulls were found on the 6th floor). [Now you are really over-the-top of dishonesty, Professor. This is the receipt by virtue of which FBI Agent Vincent Drain and FBI Agent Charles T Brown, Jr. picked up the live round and two cartridge cases from the Crime Scene Search Section of the Dallas Police on the evening of November 22nd. What do you think it meant when Studebaker and Day of DPD put their names in the blank marked, "Signature of Person Submitting Specimen?" What do you think it meant when the name of Special Agent Charles T. Brown, Jr. is found in the blank marked, "Signature of Person Receiving Specimen?" What did think it meant when this form contained a note signed by Lieutentant Day of DPD stating, "Vince Drain also present -- actually took possession of all evidence"?] Noel also publishes photos of the scene, which reveal a crude forgery to add a third shell casing [This is so silly it requires no answer. The photos themselves show no attempt at "forgery." All they show is what they have always shown: three cartridge cases lying on the floor of the 6th floor sniper's nest.] and the changed "evidence sheet" in which the numeral "2" has been changed to "3." [see comments above. These are earlier and later drafts of the same report] Nor does Vaughan or Thompson address the evidence photograph that appears in Jesse Curry's JFK ASSASSINATION FILE (1969). [What do you want us to say about this?]

I hope you have Noel's book, because he does a thorough job of documenting the point that only two spent shell casings and one unspent "live" round were found. [see above.] That another spent casing would eventually "show up", of course, is par for the history of "evidence" about the assassination, where the DPD and the FBI were doing what they could to make their case against the alleged assassin, including creating a palm print on the weapon by taking it to the funeral parlor and impressing his palm on the Mannlicher-Carcono, where the funeral director complained about having to remove the ink from his hands afterward. [Whoa! Do you know nothing about fingerprints? Are you really suggesting that you make fingerprints on a rifle by putting ink on Oswald's dead hands and pressing a hand against the rifle. You know what you would get if you did this? Just a lot of ink on the rifle. By inking Oswald's hands they could press the fingers against a fingerprint card and obtain good prints. Your point is hilariously wrong.] That these people would go so far as to cite from a notorious "lone-nutter" web site does not overcome the weight of the evidence and only raises questions about their research. [Photos are photos and arguments are arguments wherever found. Numerous folks worked on debunking this point years ago and it finally ended up on MacAdams' site. So what.]

Jim[/b]

When you take the trouble to drill down into what you are actually claiming, the portrait of you that emerges gets darker. We know that Vince Drain of the FBI picked up a live round and two cases from DPD on the evening of November 22nd. What on earth could make you see the receipt for the pickup as somehow showing that two (not three) cartridge cases were found on the 6th floor? Even the managing editor of the the National Enquirer wouldn't try to make that one fly. Again and again you prove exactly what Lifton and I were talking about.

Josiah Thompson

Fetzer’s response to this detailed critique was to ignore it and ask that questions from me and Mike Williams be moved to another thread. I was delighted to see that Todd Vaughan had opened this new thread with the apt title, “THE TWYMAN/FETZER SHELL GAME.” What I intend to do in this post (and in subsequent posts on this thread ) is to carry out an extremely specific refutation of Fetzer’s claims. First, I will quote what Fetzer said. Second, I will scan and post the document or photo that he cites. Third, I will explain why and how Fetzer has misrepresented what is there.

I will start here with Fetzer’s claim that a specific DPD document found on p.116 of Twyman’s book states that “two cartridge cases and one live round were found on the sixth floor.” Here’s the document from page 116 of Twyman’s book:

page116BloodyTreason.jpg

Note that this document is a standard release for the Crime Scene Search Unit of the Identification Bureau of the Dallas Police Department. The blank beside the legend “SIGNATURE OF PERSON SUBMITTING SPECIMEN” is filled with the names of Day and Studebaker. The blank beside the legend “SIGNATURE OF PERSON RECEIVING SPECIMEN” is filled in with the name “Charles T. Brown, Jr. Spec. Agent, FBI, Dallas.” The blank with the legend “SPECIMEN RELEASED TO” is filled with note in Lieutenant Day’s hand: “Vince Drain also present – actually took possession of all evidence.” The description of what was received by Drain and Brown of the FBI is given as: “from the 6th floor of the Texas Book Depository 1 6.5 lever action rifle #C2766 2 spent hulls from 6th floor window.”

We know independently that FBI Agent Vincent Drain picked up the items mentioned and additional items from the Dallas Police on Friday evening. We know independently that Lt. Day held back one cartridge case and released only two (as indicated) to the FBI on Friday evening. We know that these materials were received at the FBI Lab the next morning. Fetzer and Twyman claim that this receipt proves a live round and two cartridge cases were found on the 6th floor. As a receipt for pickup of materials, all it proves is what we already knew. The rifle and two cartridge cases were picked up for transfer to the FBI Lab by Agent Vincent Drain of the FBI on the evening of November 22nd.

Josiah Thompson

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Tink,

Noel Twyman is also my friend. For the record, I confronted him with this dispute years ago and advanced (as devil's advocate) the theories that you and others expressed. Noel stood by his original conclusions and was unwavering in his conviction. His position is unequivocal and firmly based not just on the photographic interpretation, but on witness interviews that he conducted. I haven't communicated with him in a while, but I would be very surprised if he changed his position. Noel is known for his attention to detail--and has voluntarily corrected errors and omissions without being requested to do so. It is the nature of his personality. He has nothing to prove and no image of himself to which he must cling.

But alas, we post erroneously to a thread about Judyth Vary Baker.

A claim like this sinks or swims on the basis of the evidence put forward. It doesn't depend upon "witness interviews" we've never seen nor the author's alleged "attention to detail." The evidence put forward in his book to prove this point only makes one laugh. He misinterprets anything that comes close to him.

Josiah Thompson

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[snip]

He misinterprets anything that comes close to him.

Josiah Thompson

Ok, Tink--now "we're into it" -- you and me...again. It's been a long time. "Tally ho, here we go--I'm in!"

To whom exactly are you referring in your post? Jim or Noel? Don't you think that the term "anything" is fallacious by definition in this context?

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A few days ago on the Judyth/Fetzer thread I posted this detailed critique of Fetzer’s claim (taken from Twyman) that two, not three, cartridge cases were found on the 6th Floor near the sniper’s nest. I quote in extenso Fetzer’s claims and follow this with my critique in italics, bold.

QUOTE (James H. Fetzer @ May 20 2010, 09:17 PM) My comments are in italics, bold:

The evidence photographs published in Noel Twyman's BLOODY TREASON (1997) show two spent casings and one unspent cartridge, [if you are referring to the photo of the live round and two casings on a desk (page 111), what I've said before applies: these are rounds sent to the FBI on Friday night. If you are referring to the crime scene photos that Twyman incorrectly claims show a live round and two cartridge cases at the crime scene, then you are just wrong. As demonstrated by the article from the MacAdams site, close-up photos show dramatically that what Twyman and you have claimed to be a live round is really a cartridge case. The crime scene photos then show three cartridge cases.] where the photos are substantiated by a exhibits (documents) on page 110 (an FBI agent's note of two hulls and one "live" round were found), [Once again, Professor, thou speakest with a forked tongue. The document you reference is an evidence envelope with the notation: "2 negatives & 4 prints of each of two 8.5 bullet hulls & 1 'live' round of 6.5 ammunition -- from the rifle found on 6th floor of Texas School Book Depository, Dallas on 11-22-63." It does not say that 2 cases and 1 live round were found on the 6th Floor. Once again, the photos are there to memorialize the transfer of these materials to the FBI and prove nothing about what was found on the 6th floor.] on page 112 (the original Oswald "evidence sheet" showing one "live" and 2 spent rounds were found) [You carefully omit, Professor, what Twyman published on the very next page, page 113. On this next page, Twyman prints a later draft of the same page which has numerous changes in language including a change in the number of "6.5 spent rounds" from (2) to (3). It is obvious that these are earlier and later drafts since corrections are made and information added in the later draft. The correct draft is the later one where three "6.5 spend rounds" are mentioned.] , and on page 116 (a DPD report dated 11-22-63 stating two spent hulls were found on the 6th floor). [Now you are really over-the-top of dishonesty, Professor. This is the receipt by virtue of which FBI Agent Vincent Drain and FBI Agent Charles T Brown, Jr. picked up the live round and two cartridge cases from the Crime Scene Search Section of the Dallas Police on the evening of November 22nd. What do you think it meant when Studebaker and Day of DPD put their names in the blank marked, "Signature of Person Submitting Specimen?" What do you think it meant when the name of Special Agent Charles T. Brown, Jr. is found in the blank marked, "Signature of Person Receiving Specimen?" What did think it meant when this form contained a note signed by Lieutentant Day of DPD stating, "Vince Drain also present -- actually took possession of all evidence"?] Noel also publishes photos of the scene, which reveal a crude forgery to add a third shell casing [This is so silly it requires no answer. The photos themselves show no attempt at "forgery." All they show is what they have always shown: three cartridge cases lying on the floor of the 6th floor sniper's nest.] and the changed "evidence sheet" in which the numeral "2" has been changed to "3." [see comments above. These are earlier and later drafts of the same report] Nor does Vaughan or Thompson address the evidence photograph that appears in Jesse Curry's JFK ASSASSINATION FILE (1969). [What do you want us to say about this?]

I hope you have Noel's book, because he does a thorough job of documenting the point that only two spent shell casings and one unspent "live" round were found. [see above.] That another spent casing would eventually "show up", of course, is par for the history of "evidence" about the assassination, where the DPD and the FBI were doing what they could to make their case against the alleged assassin, including creating a palm print on the weapon by taking it to the funeral parlor and impressing his palm on the Mannlicher-Carcono, where the funeral director complained about having to remove the ink from his hands afterward. [Whoa! Do you know nothing about fingerprints? Are you really suggesting that you make fingerprints on a rifle by putting ink on Oswald's dead hands and pressing a hand against the rifle. You know what you would get if you did this? Just a lot of ink on the rifle. By inking Oswald's hands they could press the fingers against a fingerprint card and obtain good prints. Your point is hilariously wrong.] That these people would go so far as to cite from a notorious "lone-nutter" web site does not overcome the weight of the evidence and only raises questions about their research. [Photos are photos and arguments are arguments wherever found. Numerous folks worked on debunking this point years ago and it finally ended up on MacAdams' site. So what.]

Jim[/b]

When you take the trouble to drill down into what you are actually claiming, the portrait of you that emerges gets darker. We know that Vince Drain of the FBI picked up a live round and two cases from DPD on the evening of November 22nd. What on earth could make you see the receipt for the pickup as somehow showing that two (not three) cartridge cases were found on the 6th floor? Even the managing editor of the the National Enquirer wouldn't try to make that one fly. Again and again you prove exactly what Lifton and I were talking about.

Josiah Thompson

Fetzer’s response to this detailed critique was to ignore it and ask that questions from me and Mike Williams be moved to another thread. I was delighted to see that Todd Vaughan had opened this new thread with the apt title, “THE TWYMAN/FETZER SHELL GAME.” What I intend to do in this post (and in subsequent posts on this thread ) is to carry out an extremely specific refutation of Fetzer’s claims. First, I will quote what Fetzer said. Second, I will scan and post the document or photo that he cites. Third, I will explain why and how Fetzer has misrepresented what is there.

I will start here with Fetzer’s claim that a specific DPD document found on p.116 of Twyman’s book states that “two cartridge cases and one live round were found on the sixth floor.” Here’s the document from page 116 of Twyman’s book:

page116BloodyTreason.jpg

Note that this document is a standard release for the Crime Scene Search Unit of the Identification Bureau of the Dallas Police Department. The blank beside the legend “SIGNATURE OF PERSON SUBMITTING SPECIMEN” is filled with the names of Day and Studebaker. The blank beside the legend “SIGNATURE OF PERSON RECEIVING SPECIMEN” is filled in with the name “Charles T. Brown, Jr. Spec. Agent, FBI, Dallas.” The blank with the legend “SPECIMEN RELEASED TO” is filled with note in Lieutenant Day’s hand: “Vince Drain also present – actually took possession of all evidence.” The description of what was received by Drain and Brown of the FBI is given as: “from the 6th floor of the Texas Book Depository 1 6.5 lever action rifle #C2766 2 spent hulls from 6th floor window.”

We know independently that FBI Agent Vincent Drain picked up the items mentioned and additional items from the Dallas Police on Friday evening. We know independently that Lt. Day held back one cartridge case and released only two (as indicated) to the FBI on Friday evening. We know that these materials were received at the FBI Lab the next morning. Fetzer and Twyman claim that this receipt proves a live round and two cartridge cases were found on the 6th floor. As a receipt for pickup of materials, all it proves is what we already knew. The rifle and two cartridge cases were picked up for transfer to the FBI Lab by Agent Vincent Drain of the FBI on the evening of November 22nd.

Josiah Thompson

Josiah:

I spent a number of hours with John Carl Day at his home with a police officer friend of mine (I believe in 1996). I recall asking him why he held back the one cartridge. I also asked him about what I thought was the most odd circumstance, why did the rifle not contain a full clip of ammunition? I remember getting strange responses but I will have to one day review my tapes with him. I still find the latter point of there not being a full clip to be the most disconcerting of all. I was saddened to hear of Day's passing. Though he became very flustered in trying to answer some of my questions he was very gracious.

Doug Weldon

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I find it odd that no one picked up on the OTHER glaring error in the FBI/DPD receipt...that the rifle was referred to as a LEVER action, when it is CLEARLY a BOLT action. Interesting that NEITHER the DPD nor the FBI questioned that. I'm no firearms expert by any stretch of the imagination, but any kid who's ever hunted squirrels with a .22 knows a lever action from a bolt action. Wonder how that slid past BOTH agencies?

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