Frequently Asked Questions


DC: You write a lot about the failure of law enforcement to consistently follow up with many witnesses or proper questioning protocol. Why do you think this happened?
CC: There’s no question that this happened; the theories as to why it happened abound, and I don’t espouse one particular notion. I believe the failure was deliberate, and I believe that hastily constructed conclusions and a mandate for establishing those conclusions were at least some of the factors involved. Another factor that cannot be downplayed was the lack of cooperative efforts by the local and federal agencies, each of which undoubtedly felt some sense of superiority or at least jurisdiction…until the FBI swooped in and took control.

Now—do I believe that all of these failures were designed for the singular purpose of avoiding any evidence of a conspiracy? Absolutely not. But any complacency of an “official” body, charged with the responsibility of solving the murder of the President of the United States, and with unlimited resources to facilitate that responsibility, is no better than if that body had conspired to devise an elaborate cover up. Sometimes neglect is just as effective a tool as the proactive destruction or hiding of evidence.

For example, Edna Case, a manager at the Macmillan Publishing Company, was watching the motorcade from the window of the company’s third floor office. The day after the assassination, she told the FBI (incredibly enough) that she did not hear any shots. Despite her self-admitted lack of value as a material witness, she was interviewed two more times. Conversely, Marilyn Sitzman—Abraham Zapruder’s secretary, who was holding on to Zapruder as he filmed history’s most infamous home movie—was never questioned by any law enforcement agency, nor called before either of the official governmental investigative bodies to testify. This was not a witness who was hiding back in the shadows of one of the buildings in Dealey Plaza, or lost in the three-people-deep crowds gathered at the intersections; this was someone whose presence was broadcast on television immediately after the assassination, and mentioned each and every time Abraham Zapruder spoke with the authorities (well…both times).

As another example, I return to amateur photographer Robert Croft. After the assassination, Croft could not make himself immediately available to the authorities; the fact that he was in Dealey Plaza at all was a bit of a fluke, as Dallas was just a stop-over on his way to Denver, Colorado. Despite the fact that he left the plaza quickly in order to catch his train, FBI agents were waiting for him at his Denver office when he arrived for work the following morning.
These two examples alone establish enough of a precedent that most failures on the part of law enforcement and investigative bodies cannot be explained away with rote “lack of man power and resources” or “benign ignorance” excuses.

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