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Searching for the occipital-parietal head wound in the autopsy photographs


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There are numerous threads on medical evidence and autopsy data on this forum, and as I do not know which thread to choose, I decided to start a new one. 

The lack of a wound on the back of President's head in official autopsy photographs is in stark contrast with numerous testimonies by Parkland medical staff who were consistent in observing such wound while President was attended to in trauma room 1. While some autopsy photographs have the back of the head crudely retouched, there may be one or couple pictures which could still contain original information pertaining to the wound in the back of President's head.

The picture below appers to be just such picture (downloaded from jfkassassinationgallery.org) (left):

original_head.jpg.9699d687959c8bef63d5942d5d243d78.jpgoriginal_head_lighted.jpg.8750771b0079a9f62285cce7ccd76d84.jpg

I have added a bit of light to the dark tones which resulted in the image in the right panel.

The logic of the problem suggests that in case of intentional alteration of this autopsy picture to hide the occipital-parietal wound, a texture in form of human hair would be added to mask the dark space represented by the wound. If comparatively light-coloured lines have been added to otherwise very dark area (hollow space of the wound), we should see a different distribution of very dark tones over the area of the wound compared to the area of intact hair. Basically, the hair fibres over the tampered area would not have have the correct vertical depth and would end abruptly in the dark void of the head wound. 

I have uploaded this image to ImageJ program which allows visualisation of the brightness of an image as a depth, creating a pseudo 3D image in which light tones are on the surface of the 3D structure and the dark tones in the depth of the 3D structure.

 

Here are the black-and-white and coloured representations of the image above (the enhanced one):

 

imagej_grey.jpg.58898f60d6ef3aaa385eec1888ae3765.jpgimagej_colored.jpg.4e45daa36735c415f517c5fcade34c6d.jpg

 

 

As brightness adds another dimension to the image, the photograph becomes a 3D object and can therefore be tilted, rotated etc. In the coloured image, please note that the very dark area next to the surgeon's thumb is represented as being located deep and it is painted with dark blue or black colour. This area of the head is likely devoid of any tissues, a cavity.

It is possible to view the histogram of brightness across the height of the image which allows to view the configurations of the very dark pixels across the picture; those would likely be in areas devoid of any tissues.

imagej_histogram.jpg.d950c2e202d65d3f40dda46fa6a7f183.jpg

In the histogram image above, the top of the patch would be the most superficial layer of comparatively bright pixels, and the bottom of the patch would represent the distribution of comparatively dark pixels. The photograph is viewed as if from the side with the left corner being at President's neck and the right corner ending at the surgeon's elbow. Please note the very dark area corresponding to the region of the head next to the surgeon's finger. However, the occipital area of the head down to a line at approximately the level of external occipital protuberance is also very dark.

 

imagej_bottom.jpg.98305a5baa6fca717da4ad68bd22a2ae.jpg

The picture above shows the map of dark pixels in the right parieto-occipital region of the head. Basically, we see the bottom of 3D brightness-coded photograph. Please note that hair above the neck shows intermediate level of blue-violet colour (skin), while the region above of what may be the hollow area has clearly a darker "bottom" and connects to the dark area next to the surgeon's finger. In my humble opinion, the black-coded region in the photograph is related to a void owing to the missing tissue in the occipital-parietal region of the head. Interestingly, there appears to be a very bright spot interrupting the lower contour of the dark area. Of course, this spot would be bright when viewed from the top and it would be hard to pinpoint it as the neighboring spots would also be of comparatively light colour. However, unlike other light-coloured lines on the bright surface of the photograph, this spot has no dark bottom, meaning it is bright over the entire depth. One explanation would be that it is a metal object lodged in the lower aspect of the head wound. 

 

overlay_merged.jpg.96a5079c6ce88351d5a55c470c4cb58a.jpg

The "bottom" of the brightness coded pseudo-3D picture was overlaid onto the original photograph. This visualisation may actually point to the President's occipital-parietal wound.

 

Notably, the texture of normal hair in the lower back region of the head differs from the texture of hair in the area overlaying the purported hollow space. 

hairtexture.jpg.bdeb956db102cc773de311024d9c5456.jpg

The hair fibres in the lower part of the scalp ("normal hair texture") create vertical columns with a continuous gradation of brightness, and have a shape of Eiffel tower. In contrast, the columns of hair in the area overlaing the void have only a comparatively bright top and fall sharply to the very dark levels with almost no gradations of brightness (a skyscraper). This would be consistent with painting comparatively bright patches over a very dark region of the photograph overlaying a cavity.

Coming back to the bright object which does not appear to have any bottom in the brightness-coded autopsy picture, the figure below depicts the location of the bright spot on the overlay of original photograph and the colour-coded "bottom" (dark tones), and the flipped X-ray image of President's head. While the head picture and the X-ray do not have identical orientations, it is still possible to at least evaluate the approximate distance of the bright 6.5 mm spot in the X-ray (which we know is only about 2.5 wide, as per Dr Mantik's observation) from the midline and to compare it with the bright looking spot not having a dark bottom in the autopsy picture.

overlay_and_xray.jpg.c5b5b60aabc5914e95ccf4e115bf0c7c.jpg

 

 

 

 

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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Hello Andrej,

It's my belief that the reason the photographic panel did not find any forgeries in the autopsy photographs was because the manipulators took a picture of the picture you provided.This would result in not being able to identify any forgeries.

 

Edited by Michael Crane
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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, Michael Crane said:

Hello Andrej,

It's my belief that the reason the photographic panel did not find any forgeries in the autopsy photographs was because the manipulators took a picture of the picture you provided.This would result in not being able to identify any forgeries.

 

Michael:

I agree completely. The picture, in my view, was manipulated by adding a texture alluding to hair, and the picture was re-shot while selectively underexposing the right side of the head during the positive process ( I used to employ such simple masking myself in my young years if I wanted to brighten or darken selected parts of the photograph). The right portion of the scalp looks unexplicably dark compared to the part of the scalp over the vertex and to the left of vertex.

The autopsy photograph analysed here is labelled "This is the photograph that Robert Knudsen confirmed as fake", on page 166 in JFK Absolute truth by Robert Groden. Robert Knudsen was the White House photographer tasked with taking photographs during the autopsy.

In other photographs, chief autopsy photographer John Stringer conferred to the ARRB under oath that the film containing autopsy pictures shown to him was not the type of film he had used in 1963. That would mean that the film shown to him was photographed by shooting forged pictures. 

However, we are fortunate to have at least this type of fake. The worse fakes are those having portions of the back of the head completely retouched. I can try to analyse those too, however, I do not feel this could yield anything.

 

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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12 hours ago, Andrej Stancak said:

Michael:

I agree completely. The picture, in my view, was manipulated by adding a texture alluding to hair, and the picture was re-shot while selectively underexposing the right side of the head during the positive process ( I used to employ such simple masking myself in my young years if I wanted to brighten or darken selected parts of the photograph). The right portion of the scalp looks unexplicably dark compared to the part of the scalp over the vertex and to the left of vertex.

The autopsy photograph analysed here is labelled "This is the photograph that Robert Knudsen confirmed as fake", on page 166 in JFK Absolute truth by Robert Groden. Robert Knudsen was the White House photographer tasked with taking photographs during the autopsy.

In other photographs, chief autopsy photographer John Stringer conferred to the ARRB under oath that the film containing autopsy pictures shown to him was not the type of film he had used in 1963. That would mean that the film shown to him was photographed by shooting forged pictures. 

However, we are fortunate to have at least this type of fake. The worse fakes are those having portions of the back of the head completely retouched. I can try to analyse those too, however, I do not feel this could yield anything.

 

Oh my. Robert Knudsen was not an autopsy photographer and did not take photos of Kennedy's autopsy. Heck, he wasn't even at the autopsy. The autopsy photographer was John Stringer, and his assistant, who took a few photos that were overexposed by the SS, was Floyd Riebe. 

 

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45 minutes ago, Pat Speer said:

Oh my. Robert Knudsen was not an autopsy photographer and did not take photos of Kennedy's autopsy. Heck, he wasn't even at the autopsy. The autopsy photographer was John Stringer, and his assistant, who took a few photos that were overexposed by the SS, was Floyd Riebe. 

 

Maybe I misunderstood, however, this is what I got from JFK Absolute Proof by Robert Groden:

"Pressed into service as an autopsy photographer on the night of November 22, 1963, White House photographer Robert Knudsen was questioned by the House Select Committee on Assassinations in 1978." (p.164).

I interpret this sentence as Knudsen being present at the autopsy and taking pictures on behalf of the White House, in parallel to the official photograhers Stringer and Riebe. 

 

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2 hours ago, Andrej Stancak said:

Maybe I misunderstood, however, this is what I got from JFK Absolute Proof by Robert Groden:

"Pressed into service as an autopsy photographer on the night of November 22, 1963, White House photographer Robert Knudsen was questioned by the House Select Committee on Assassinations in 1978." (p.164).

I interpret this sentence as Knudsen being present at the autopsy and taking pictures on behalf of the White House, in parallel to the official photograhers Stringer and Riebe. 

 

Sorry. I should have been more clear. Groden is basing this on what Knudsen supposedly told others because it sounds exciting and helps sell books. He leaves out that 1) Knudsen was a White House photographer who took pictures of the family, and would have under no circumstances been tasked with taking forensic photographs, 2) Knudsen was interviewed by the HSCA and said under oath that he'd developed photographs taken by others on the morning after the assassination, and that that was the first he'd seen the condition of the body, 3) none of the other witnesses to the autopsy, in particular autopsy photographers John Stringer and Floyd Riebe, said he was there, and 4) he was not listed among those attending the autopsy on the list compiled by Sibert and O'Neil. 

Unfortunately, Groden (a heckuva nice guy, at least to me) is a sensationalist and is not to be relied upon. He has made claims in recent books and presentations that autopsy photographs among his collection are of Kennedy that are not, and was interviewed on TV saying he'd spoken to 80 something witnesses and all agreed the autopsy photos are fake (which is a big fat fib). When he made this claim at Pittsburgh in 2013, moreover, he caused a bit of a stir, and a number of top researchers came up to me afterwards and shared that Groden had lost touch, if he ever had touch. They even had a word for it--that he'd had a "Groden moment"--a moment when he makes a claim so ridiculous or over the top that everyone around him has to roll their eyes or drop their mouths, or both.

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Posted (edited)

The photograph I consider as being crudely retouched is the one below (downloaded from jfkassassinationgallery.org). Please note a non-transparent black patch over both the left and right back of the head. The left panel shows the original photograph, and the right panel shows the same photograph after light has been added to dark tones. There is no natural explanation for the occurrence of this dark patch.

backwound_original.jpg.611ffd8e27489805c820515e2d7bcfff.jpgbackwound_lightson.jpg.962d47fd22d1a0cfad14e901ddc084f3.jpg

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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Posted (edited)

I do not understand why the HSCA did not point to the blatant tampering with the autopsy picture shown in my last post. It would be more difficult to show the presence of a hole in the back of the head in the picture showing hair in that area (the first autopsy picture in this thread), however, the image manipulation in the latter picture is far too obvious. The commissioners should have pointed to the forgery and ask for explanations; it would still be possible, back in 1978, to trace the history of this forgery right to the perpetrators. 

The alterations made in both autopsy pictures discussed in this threat invalidates the results of the autopsy in its entirety. Moreover, the fact that the manipulations in these pictures occurred in the back of the head prove that the back of the head was the critical head region that the perpetrators of this crime wished to cover up. 

 

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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Hi Andrej, what do you have against the simpler explanation that the BOH photo is after the reconstruction? If you read Hulmes reaction to the photo (HSCA) it pretty much confirms he had requested a photo to show the (small) rear headwound, but it didn't. It is my view that it didn't because the scalp sagged over the hole. The large blowout in the rear had been sealed with a piece of rubber and the scalp sewn up. I think its possible that what you are picking up is stretched scalp , where some follicles are further apart than before the injuries.

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5 hours ago, Andrej Stancak said:

I do not understand why the HSCA did not point to the blatant tampering with the autopsy picture shown in my last post. It would be more difficult to show the presence of a hole in the back of the head in the picture showing hair in that area (the first autopsy picture in this threat), however, the image manipulation in the latter picture is far too obvious. The commissioners should have pointed to the forgery and ask for explanations; it would still be possible, back in 1978, to trace the history of this forgery right to the perpetrators. 

The alterations made in both autopsy pictures discussed in this threat invalidates the results of the autopsy in its entirety. Moreover, the fact that the manipulations in these pictures occurred in the back of the head prove that the back of the head was the critical head region that the perpetrators of this crime wished to cover up. 

 

They didn't study the photos posted on this thread. They had the negatives and the original prints to work with. The photos you are looking at are probably photos of photos that had been printed in books. So let's see. There's the original negative. Then a photo made from that negative. Then a photo of that photo that was printed in a book. Then a digital copy scanned from that book, or perhaps even a digital copy scanned from a photo of a photo in that book. Either way, that's a long way down, a long way in which the relative contrast within the photo could have been changed, and details could have been lost. 

Edited by Pat Speer
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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Pat Speer said:

They didn't study the photos posted on this thread. They had the negatives and the original prints to work with. The photos you are looking at are probably photos of photos that had been printed in books. So let's see. There's the original negative. Then a photo made from that negative. Then a photo of that photo that was printed in a book. Then a digital copy scanned from that book, or perhaps even a digital copy scanned from a photo of a photo in that book. Either way, that's a long way down, a long way in which the relative contrast within the photo could have been changed, and details could have been lost. 

Pat:

The most recently shown photograph (posted on Sunday, June 19) actually shows very good details over the entire picture excluding the back of the head, and  including e.g., the details of hair in the upper part of the scalp. President's back and and physician's hands are sharp too. The only part of the photograph showing only flat black colour with no depth is the right and left back of the head down to the neck. If degradation of the original photograph due to overcopying would cause dark patches, the degradation of the same strength would be seen uniformly across the picture. However, it is not. There is simply no signal in the back of the head. However, it is not only the lack of details but also the black colour of the patch. It is not possible to suddenly have a dark patch in one region of the head (alluding to no external or ambient light present) but not in the neck or on the top of the head. 

I would love to be able to view the certified copies of autopsy images, however, this is unlikely to happen. Therefore, until someone shows this picture with all details in the back of the head (including Hume's entry wound to the right of external occipital protuberance) this particular image remains a crude alteration of the autopsy evidence and a proof of a coverup.

 

 

 

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Eddy Bainbridge said:

Hi Andrej, what do you have against the simpler explanation that the BOH photo is after the reconstruction? If you read Hulmes reaction to the photo (HSCA) it pretty much confirms he had requested a photo to show the (small) rear headwound, but it didn't. It is my view that it didn't because the scalp sagged over the hole. The large blowout in the rear had been sealed with a piece of rubber and the scalp sewn up. I think its possible that what you are picking up is stretched scalp , where some follicles are further apart than before the injuries.

Eddy:

there was no scalp in the open wound in the back of the head. There was no scalp to be stretched over that open wound through which the brain matter and fluids were discharded after the fatal head shot. 

Humes could not see the opening in the back of the head not because of scalp retraction but owing this picture being blackened in the back of the head.  If there would be retracted scalp in the back of the head, we would still see the texture of hair.

Your note indicates that you think the timing of the photograph was after the morticians completed embalming the body (sealing the wound with rubber...). However, I see physicians still taking measurements of the back, meaning it is an autopsy photograph.

 

 

 

Edited by Andrej Stancak
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On 6/20/2022 at 5:31 PM, Pat Speer said:

They didn't study the photos posted on this thread. They had the negatives and the original prints to work with. The photos you are looking at are probably photos of photos that had been printed in books. So let's see. There's the original negative. Then a photo made from that negative. Then a photo of that photo that was printed in a book. Then a digital copy scanned from that book, or perhaps even a digital copy scanned from a photo of a photo in that book. Either way, that's a long way down, a long way in which the relative contrast within the photo could have been changed, and details could have been lost. 

This is the same reason Tom Wilson's claims of being able to detect widespread alteration in the assassination photo record never rang true to me -- he was studying multiple-generation copies, and not the original evidence.

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