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Joe Bauer

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Several times I have thought NBC news correspondent Tom Pettit's first breath taking reported words of shock to millions of Americans watching Lee Harvey Oswald's death trap transfer perp walk in the Dallas Police Department basement live on national TV on 11,24,1963 ...


would be a very interesting and captivating title to a book focusing on the Dallas P.D. and their mind boggling, worst case security failure handling of our country's most important criminal suspect ever ... Lee Harvey Oswald.

From their first arresting Oswald in the Texas Theater to his nation shocking murder on live TV in their own PD building basement and custody combined with their own questionably tolerant long term relationship with Oswald's sleazy strip joint owner assassin Jack Ruby.

I've always said that Lee Oswald's brutal shot in the gut murder in the custody hands of the Dallas PD ( literally!) and it's showing on live TV did more to shake our entire nation's trust in what they were being told about JFK's assassination than has ever been adequately reported and summarized.

Personally not seeing JFK shot and only hearing reports and articles of it did not have the power that Oswald's live TV murder had on our nation's psyche. 

Oswald's live on TV murder shook us viscerally more in certain ways imo.

It instantly created an extremely deep gut wrenching grip of doubt and suspicion in the minds of tens of millions of Americans. Doubt ,suspicion and even mistrust in everything they were hearing and reading about the JFK assassination.

I believe that Oswald's almost impossibly improbable murder while in police custody was one of the top three dynamics that created a poll reported majority of conspiracy believers for generations.

I believe it's important to know how Oswald's improbable murder took place the way it did and why and how it changed our nation's perceptions regarding government mistrust and suspicion on the unprecedented level it has been.

And of course, MLK's and RFK's murders only added to this deep mistrust.

In my mind, Oswald's time in the Dallas PD custody and confines is a fascinating story unto itself. It was a circus of press crush allowed bedlam. 

Incessant shouting, police fighting to get through the crush, big cables and cameras to worry about tripping over. Press literally shoving their faces and pounding against Will Fritz's office door windows while Oswald is actually being interrogated in the room next door? 

Oswald's very own police escort detective Jim Leavelle many times described the scene as "a complete circus" in years later interviews. And wondered how that scene was so out of control like that. He once giddily described kicking a reporter who had actually wiggled between his legs to get a photo shot of Oswald so hard the man went flying ten feet back!

Oswald's assassin Jack Ruby himself was running to and fro in the hallway crowds during Oswald's custody. NUTS!

Chief Curry ignored calls for tighter Oswald transfer protocol. Why?

Chief Curry stated to the press only 25 of his officers ever even knew Jack Ruby.

He knew that was not true. 

The FBI demanded all the physical gun and other item evidence of Oswald's guilt within 24 hours of JFK's death. Gun, bullets, prints, etc. It was packaged up and sent to them that quickly.

Unfortunately they and every other part of our federal government left the most important piece of evidence behind to be held in the hands of the Dallas PD. Lee Oswald himself. And we all know how that turned out.


Edited by Joe Bauer
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