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The 6.5 mm fragment that wasn't

Pat Speer

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While watching Dr. Mantik's 2009 Lancer presentation the other day I had a quick thought. Mantik had argued that the 6.5 mm fragment supposedly on the back of the head on the x-rays had been added on, as fragments of that size don't just end up on the back of the head, and the odds of an artifact being 6.5 mm, the exact size of a Carcano bullet, seemed astronomical.

Well, this led me to wonder how we know the fragment is 6.5 mm. And this led me to realize the obvious...IT ISN'T!

From what I can gather, the ONLY "experts" to claim the fragment was 6.5 mm were the members of the Clark Panel, the same fellas who moved the head wound, misrepresented the level of the back wound, and made the strange claim there were two left lateral x-rays and no right lateral x-ray. NO ONE--LN or CT--thinks the Clark Panel got it "right." So why trust them on the size of the fragment?

I mean, none of the other "experts" do. I looked through the testimony and reports of the other experts to look at the x-rays, and didn't find one to repeat the Clark Panel's claim the fragment was 6.5mm.

This led me to try and figure out the actual diameter of the fragment. I blew up the size of the skull on my computer, and measured the width. I then measured the width of the fragment. This gave me a number--the size of the fragment in proportion to the size of the skull. I then multiplied this by 17.6 cm--the width of Kennedy's skull as per the HSCA. This told me that the fragment was really 7 cm in diameter...IF it was at the widest part of the skull. Well, as the face on the x-ray was magnified by 20% over the back of the head on the x-ray, the widest part of the skull would have been just back of the face. In other words, the fragment, IF it was just back of the face, would be about 7 cm wide.

This supported my argument that the fragment was actually the 7 by 2 fragment removed from behind the eye at autopsy.

But there was something more convincing. IF the fragment was on the back of the head, as purported, it would have to have been MUCH larger than 7 cm to appear as much on the x-ray. By my estimation, in fact, it would have to be around 8.1 cm.

This means that 1) the fragment was either a much larger fragment than 6.5 mm, or 2) it was not on the back of the head as purported.

Double check my work and see if you don't agree.


Edited by Pat Speer
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