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Martello interviews Oswald

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On Saturday, August 10, 1963, Lieutenant Francis Martello interviewed Lee Harvey Oswald in the station house of the First District in New Orleans, LA.

This was the day after Oswald had been arrested on August 9th.

When Martello testified to the WC over the two days of April 7-8, 1964, they reviewed a memorandum that Martello wrote for the Secret Service on November 29, 1963 recounting the interview he had conducted with LHO the previous August.

Two things jumped out at me concerning that interview:

1) The New Orleans Police had not confiscated Oswald's wallet as the Dallas Police had; and,

2) Oswald did not have the Hidell Selective Service card on him.



"When OSWALD was brought into the office, I introduced myself to him as Lieutenant FRANCIS L. MARTELLO and I was in uniform at the time.
"I asked OSWALD if he had any identification papers. At this time OSWALD produced his wallet. Upon my request, he removed the papers and I examined them. He had in his wallet a number of miscellaneous papers, cards and identification items. The only ones that I felt were of any significance were the following, which I made note of:


"1. Social Security Card bearing #433-54-3937 in the name of LEE HARVEY OSWALD.
"2. Selective Service draft card in the name of LEE HARVEY OSWALD bearing #41-114-395-32, classification---4A. (I do not know what draft board was registered with.)
"3. Card bearing name LEE HARVEY OSWALD reflecting he was a member of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee; address listed as 799 Broadway, New York 3, New York; telephone #ORegon 4-8295, headquarters for Fair Play for Cuba Committee. Card was signed by V. T. LEE, Executive Secretary; card issued 5/28/63.
"4. Card for the New Orleans Chapter of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee in name of LEE HARVEY OSWALD signed by A. J. HIDELL, Chapter President, issued June 6, 1963.



a) this card had not been manufactured yet; or,

b) Oswald was not in the habit of carrying it around with him; or,

c) Was the Hidell SS card mission specific to Dallas and not to New Orleans?

Was Oswald's wallet not confiscated because the New Orleans crime was less serious?

Did the Dallas Police confiscate Oswald's wallet so that they could add things to it?

Were the Library Card and the Hidell Selective Service cards bogus?


Questions, questions, questions.


Steve Thomas


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2 hours ago, Stephanie Goldberg said:

Those are all good questions. 

Oswald spent the night in jail in New Orleans, right?  I thought it would be standard procedure when a person was arrested then and kept in a cell to confiscate their personal belongings.  



I was very surprised when I read this.

Unless Oswald was in some kind of holding cell or something, I would think the police would have confiscated his belongings if for no other reason than to prevent some other inmate from robbing him.

In his memo, Martello wrote, ""I requested the doorman to bring LEE HARVEY OSWALD into the interview room."

That made me smile. I pictured some kind of doorman in a swanky New York City hotel or something. In the last part of his memo, Martello wrote, ""OSWALD was then returned to the cell block."

As far as the card goes, a lot of people have said over the years that Oswald used the techniques he had learned at Jaggars-Chiles-Stovall to make the card, but he had left there in April. He may have learned the techniques, but did he have the equipment to manufacture the card?

I don't know.


Steve Thomas

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What was Oswald charged with by the N.O. police...disturbing the peace?

Was Oswald actually held "overnight" for this charge? 

Bringuier and his boys immediately paid the $10 each bail and were immediately released?

But Oswald didn't even have $10 to secure his immediate release?

Oswald was a notorious penny pincher. My guess is that he would rather stay in jail than give them $10 which was a lot to him in his poverty situation.

Below is a wiki entry regards the Oswald/Bringuier N.O. confrontation and resulting police action:

On August 9, 1963, Oswald was spotted by Celso Hernandez (a friend of Bringuier) handing out pro-Castro Fair Play for Cuba leaflets at the intersection of Canal Street and St. Charles. Hernandez told Bringuier of Oswald's leafleting and the two of them, along with another anti-Castro militant, Miguel Cruz, decided to confront Oswald over his duplicity. As the Cubans accosted Oswald, a crowd began to gather. Bringuier attempted to incite the crowd with his story that Oswald had tried to join his anti-Castro movement and that Oswald was actually a communist and supporter of Castro.[5][7][8] Hernandez grabbed Oswald's leaflets and a fight broke out. Oswald and the three Cubans were arrested for disturbing the peace.[5][9][10] After the arrest, Bringuier and his Cuban friends were able to post bail, whereas Oswald's bond was posted by supporters of the mob.[2] Oswald was found guilty, fined $10, and released.[11] Before leaving the police station, Oswald asked to speak with an FBI agent. Agent John Quigley arrived and spent over an hour talking to Oswald.[8][9][12]



"Oswald's bond was posted by supporters of the mob." ???

And clearly, Bringuier's boys initiated this confrontation and the only ones to physically assault. Aggressively "accosting"  Oswald and grabbing his leaflets with their boss inciting the crowd around them against Oswald?

Oswald was the clear, clear "victim" of this incident. Not a perpetrator at all. Everything he did was acting in self-defense from an aggressive assault by Bringuier and his boys.


Edited by Joe Bauer
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