November 19, 2003
James Files UNEDITED Interview – The Real Story
Cast of Characters
Location: Stateville Prison Joliet, Illinois
James Files – Confessed assassin of headshot to JFK
Pamela Ray – Author and close friend of James Files since 1999 – was supposed to be at 2003 interview with James Files
Jim Marrs – Author and person Pamela Ray agreed to have interview James Files in 2003
Gary Beebe – Cameraman
Mrs. French – Stateville Prison administration person
Wim Dankbaar – Dutch salesman
Unedited film starts with James Files entering room and agitated and asking
JF: Where’s Pamela?
WD: Uh…she’s okay with it.
WD: She’s okay with it.
JF: She’s supposed to be a part of this!
WD: (papers shuffling) uh…here’s the agreement (2003 Ray/Dankbaar Joint Venture/Revenue Sharing Agreement that Dankbaar has been in breach of since 2003)
JM: We came up here earlier and she was with us and the prison authorities said that they can’t allow – or their rules are they don’t allow family, friends, close associates and media in. We tried to talk with them and they said, “No, that’s the way it is” and so she wrote you this note…
(Pamela Ray wrote a note to James Files basically explaining what happened in front of the prison that morning and she was assured by Dankbaar that the agreement would be honored. She encouraged James Files in the note, despite being promised to be at the interview, to go ahead and do the interview to help publish their book in 2004. Dankbaar interfered with the book’s publisher in 2004 and the publisher did not want to go further with Dankbaar’s constant interference as a supposed “Silent Partner”. He subsequently took material from the publisher and put out a book without Pamela Ray or James Files permission or approval in 2005.
James Files checked into this “No family, friends or close associates with media rule” and evidently it was NOT a prison rule and someone at the prison was lying about whether or not Pamela Ray was allowed to be there for the interview. Mrs. French was present at both the confrontation in front of the prison when Pamela Ray was supposed to go in as well as in the interview room later.
Pamela Ray, speaking with Jim Marrs several months later about the situation, when she told Marrs what James Files said about it NOT being a prison rule said, “Oh really? That is not what I understood.” Jim Marrs was NOT in on the deception and treachery. Dankbaar was 100% behind it and never honored the agreement.)
JM: So she wrote you this note, I’m going to have to ask for it back ‘cause they said you could get in trouble if you tried to take it out of here.
JF: (Puts on reading glasses)
(Stateville employee – Mrs. French enters room)
MF: If he’s going to do the interview I have to get his consent…
JM: Wait a minute. Let’s see what he says…
JF: (Reading note)
WD: Jimmy, we also have the agreement here that she signed…
JF: Okay (still reading) I cannot sign an agreement like that (Pointing to 2003 Ray/Dankbaar Joint Venture/Revenue Sharing Agreement in Dankbaar’s hand) You see, I can sign no contracts…
WD: No, I know…
JF: You gotta understand, prisoners are not allowed to engage or enter into any contracts. That’s why she (Pamela Ray) has to take care of that.
JF: (Back to reading Pamela’s note)
GB: (Cameraman) Does that include a model release? A model release to use this footage?
GB: Does that include a release allowing us to use this footage?
WD: Right. That’s what this is.
MF: He’s agreeing to…
JF: I gave one of those to Bob Vernon also…
MF: He agreed to this.
JF: (To Mrs. French) Can I see your pen for a minute? (Leaning over table)
JF: (Sits down to write note on Pamela’s note)
JM: I guess you can tell by what she wrote there…
JF: That’s why I type all my letters because I have terrible handwriting…
GB: Wim move (Dankbaar stepping into frame)
WD: (To James Files) She was all tears by the way, but I guess you can tell.
JM: Yeah, you can tell that from whatever she wrote…
JF: (Writing on note to give back to Jim Marrs. Files, assured that Pamela Ray would be taken care of, agreed to proceed with the interview. James Files and Jim Marrs made some small talk about Gordon Gray, UFO’s, J. Allen Hynek, Edward Teller, UFO’s and Special Ops, James Files taking some pictures and the military confiscating them from him.)
JF: I just had to ask you about Gordon Gray and Majestic Twelve ‘cause I was always amazed at that.
JM: You read Rule by Secrecy didn’t you?
JF: Yeah, I got it now. I got it in my box.
JM: Where did you get it?
JF: I got it from Barry Falls. Barry Falls is a great admirer and friend of yours.
JM: That’s right.
JF: From Massachusetts…he’s the one who sent me your address and ask me to write to you and I wrote you the letter and told you I can’t contact anybody directly, it has to go through Pamela. Did you get that letter?
JM: Yeah, is it the one with the ships drawn on ‘em?
JM: I want to tell ya you’re a good artist.
Beginning of JFK interview questions with James Files and Jim Marrs
Q – What is your recollection of how Joe West contacted you and what did you think of Joe West?
A – Joe West originally contacted me here at Stateville prison when I was on a visit. The counselor came in the visiting room where I was at and stated that she wanted me to come out and make a phone call. I told her, “No way, I’m here 365 days a year. I’m not leaving my visit to make a phone call. I said, “Who’s calling?” Someone from Texas named Joe West. I do not know the party. Tell ‘m I call them on my time, not their time. I’m on a visit. Don’t bother me while I am on a visit. The next day they come and got me out of my cell, they took me downstairs; they got a phone call hooked up. I call Joe West to talk to him. I told him: You have 3 minutes to convince me why I should talk to you. As Joe started talking to me, I told him: Woo, stop! You go through a lot of touchy spots; these phone calls are all recorded. Every phone call going in and coming out is recorded. If you want to talk to me that bad, then I suggest you come and visit me. Joe West had me put him on the visiting list. He came up to visit me. He spent two days of talking with me. The first day I wouldn’t even talk to him about the Kennedy situation. We got into sports; weather, generally about prison, local things till I got comfortable with him. The next day, after I had thought it over all night, Joe West seemed like a pretty nice guy, I really liked Joe. He had magnetism about him. The next day we sit down and got serious and then we started talking. I sit in the visiting room with Joe. They gave us a pencil and paper. I sketched the entire Dealey Plaza out for him, without any maps, without pictures, nothing present, and I explained to Joe at that time because Joe wanted to know where I was at. And I said: I’m going to put an X on the paper, to signify me, but this X is not in the correct spot. I said: When the time comes, then I’ll put the X where it is supposed to be.
Q- What had you told him that Joe knew you were in Dealey Plaza?
A – Oh, I asked him. He said that someone had informed him that I was there. He said he had a reliable source. And I didn’t know for quite a while who that source was. It was quite some time later before I learned the fact that the FBI was aware of my presence as early as 1964. Because I never knew that anyone ever knew about me. But Zack Shelton, from what I understand, and I’m only quoting this from hearsay, that Zack was the one that stated and gave to Joe West the information on me: that I was in Dealey Plaza.
Q – That’s my understanding. Did you ever actually confess to taking the shot to Joe West?
A- No, I never did.
Q- Make a statement.
A- Well, the whole thing is, like with Joe West … Joe West died. He passed away, never knowing that I was one of two shooters there in Dealey Plaza that day. Joe West never knew I was on the grassy knoll.
Q- Do you have any thoughts on his death? Do you think that was natural?
A- Joe West went in for heart surgery. And from what I was told and from what I understood, that he had come through it very well and he was on the road to recovery. But then I was informed there was complications with his medicine, he was allergic to it or had an allergy or something. But it killed him, the medication killed him. A couple of years ago, maybe a year and a half ago, I heard through the grapevine, and I won’t go into the party that brought this information to me, they said that someone had tampered with Joe’s medication and he had received the wrong medication. Because they wanted to silence him.
Q – That’s (also) according to his wife.
A- And why would they want to silence him?
Q- We had … I shouldn’t say we, Joe West had the case in court; he wanted to exhume John F. Kennedy’s body. And that’s what he was fighting for. And at this point when I talked to Joe West, I explained to him that John F. Kennedy had been hit in the head with a mercury round, a special load. At this point I explained to him he can use this in the court to have the body exhumed because there would still be traces of mercury because the traces of mercury do not disappear. That will always be there. So this is what Joe West wanted to go back with, more evidence, and use this to get Kennedy’s body exhumed. To look for traces of mercury.
Q- And the court had accepted his case?
A- The court had accepted his case. But with his death, the case died.
Q- Do you feel like your memory is as good as it was 10 years ago?
A- No, I do not, it’s not that good. My memory as of 10 years ago was a lot more alert than what it is now. It’s not that I’m just getting old and senile, but it’s the conditions of prison, the conditions we live under. Our water here, when people come in and I’m sure you was advised not to drink the water from here and to buy a bottle of water. I’ve been drinking this water for the past 12 years with radium in it, so has every prisoner here. We wasn’t aware of the water situation until Oliver Stone comes along to make a movie here. And when he made his movie here, we see all these people from the movie company running around carrying bottles of water. Even the officers that worked here, they got suspicious and that’s when we started finding out: this water is unhealthy.
Q- Just at the side, you know: Sodium fluoride is what they put in some city’s water supplies. That’s what the Nazi’s put in the water supplies of those concentration camps to keep everybody pacified.
A- Yeah, well, they keep us pretty well pacified and they really kept us pacified since we went on about a ten month lockdown and they took the prison back and run it under their order now. And I mean this place is really maximum control now. There is no movement here at all to speak of.
Q- Did you actually meet Oliver Stone?
A- I met Oliver Stone three times. As a matter of fact I have a paper that Joe West no excuse me, not Joe West but Bob Vernon, had Oliver Stone sign. Now Bob Vernon had come in after the Joe West deal. Bob Vernon took over for Joe West. Bob Vernon met with Oliver Stone and he had him sign an agreement where they wanted to get me on film, but I refused to do that. I met with Oliver Stone three times.
Q- And you never told him your story?
A- No, I did not tell Oliver Stone my story. I refused to discuss it with him and like I say, I’ve got a copy and it’s got Oliver Stone’s signature on it. Bob Vernon’s’ the only signature that states what it’s all about, the only thing missing is my signature because I would never sign that paper for the agreement.
Q- Why was that?
A- I didn’t like the man!
Q- Case closed!
A- Case closed! And if you’d like I would be more than happy to send you a copy of the document. And it has got Oliver Stone’s original signature on it. And it has Bob Vernon’s signature on it.
Q- Well, I’ve got a whole bunch of questions, you understand what we’re doing, and we’re doing this new interview to help you and Pam,
Q- Let’s just go back in chronology, just tell me your own account again. Go back to when you first learned there was a plot to kill Kennedy and then just bring us forward and how it all came about.
A- Okay, the first time that I knew about anything being planned on Kennedy. Oh, I heard a lot of rumors, nobody liked Kennedy, they wanted to kill Kennedy, they wanted to assassinate him. They wanted to do everything to the man.
Q- Were you kind of upset with him yourself?
A- Oh I was upset with him over the Bay of Pigs, but I never paid any attention to any of this at first, because you know, everybody talks, somebody gets mad at somebody and right away: I’m gonna take this guy out, I’m gonna get that person out, woo, woo, woo, woo! You know, a lot of barking, junkyard dogs barking you know. But I was sitting in the Harlo Grill that evening, playing the pinball machine. Not the flipper kind, the kind with numbers where you gamble on, you put about 10 dollars in to play a game. And Charles Nicoletti walked in. The man that I did a lot of work with, a man that I respected. And he walked in the back room where I was at, he says: Jimmy let’s go! I said: I’ll be with you in a minute! He reached over the machine to me and he said: Let’s go now! My reply was: Yes sir, Mr. Nicoletti! I knew he was in no mood to wait and hang around. He said: I wanna talk to you. I went out and we got into his car and went for a ride, and we made it a basic habit not to sit around in restaurants, talk, discussing things like that with a lot of people hearing. And we went for a ride and he told me: We are going to do a friend of yours! And I said: Jesus, what the hell did he do now? Because I thought he was referring to one of my friends in town, he had been robbing the pinball machines and the cigarette machines; he had a 1000-dollar-a-day-heroin habit. He was an all out junky, you know. They had beaten him up several times and everything else and threatened him, but so far they had never gone as far as to kill him. Chuck laughs at me and he says, “No, not him, I’m talking about President Kennedy, JFK.” And I looked at him and says, “What? He says, “JFK, your buddy!”
I think he’s just busting my… you know, giving me a hard time. He knew JFK and he knew how much I disliked the man. So I looked at him and I laughed. I said: Okay, fine! Fine with me! You get no arguments there! And at this point I still kind of thought, you know, he was just joking with me. But then he got real serious about it. And we started talking and he says, “I want you to look around, search the areas around the town” he says, “You know everything pretty good. See where we are going to do it at, what kind of weapons we are going to need and other things like that. And he says: (inaudible) is going to bring Johnny Roselli in on it. Fine with me, I like workin’ with Johnny; I have no problems with him. And originally we had planned to do it in the Chicago area, but certain people didn’t like that idea, so we put it off and this like six months before the assassination ever really took place.
Q- But you were not supposed to be a shooter?
A- Oh no, never, I was not a shooter, I was … Let’s put it this way: I was to go for this, go for that, pick this up, pick that up, run around, driving around. When Chuck went somewhere, I was always with him.
Q- Did you ever get wind that the Secret Service might have found out about the plot in Chicago?
A- No, I did get no wind on that at all. I just knew that certain people high up in organized crime, they weren’t too happy about the idea of having something like that happen of that magnitude in their backyard. Because they figured Bobby would really be down there and they already had their own little private wars going. So we decided where to take the move, I had no idea it was going to Texas at that point. This had come to me down the road.
Q- About when was that?
A- Well, I wanna say… probably two and half, three months, maybe four, before I ever made the trip to Texas that they were talking about it. Because they didn’t know where he was gonna go. They were looking for an area to go. But then they had heard that he possibly may take this trip to Texas, but there was nothing definite. And I didn’t go to Texas until that had been confirmed. And… they had several different locations, there was New Orleans and I don’t know, there was other places he was going to. But when it came down to it, I had been told there was places that they had planned to do it, other people had been authorized and stuff like that, you know, just different rumors you hear. How much credibility there is to it, I cannot say. But when the time had come and we knew it was going to be serious and Chuck was sending me to Texas, that’s when I went down on Belmont Avenue, the old (inaudible) place where they made the pinball machines. I had a shed down there, a place, a backroom, that was all owned by the Outfit too, the pinball machines. I kept a cache of weapons down there; we used to do a lot of work on them there. When I say we, I refer to a party named Wolfman, who is now deceased, but at that time he was excellent, modifying weapons, manufacturing loads, whatever coming down to handguns, rifles. This guy was professionalized. He could manufacture things in his basement, like you wouldn’t believe, from silencers all down the line, he did it all for them. So I went down there, got the stuff we needed. And we had the one car that he just bought, I had already secured everything in there, we had secret compartments in it. And every car that we had, even before the ’63 Chevy, even in the ’61 Ford that we had prior to that in ’62, we had compartments in the dash where you could reach up under it and open things up, put grenades in there, handguns, whatever we might need. Behind the backseat we had gun racks in the cars. We had pull-off door panels that could snap off, we could put them back on, we had handguns and stuff in there. Whatever you might need, but we always had a work-car ready.
Q- So what did Wolfman do for you?
A- Wolfman, when I contacted him after all this went down, and this is several years later, this is when I first met Joe West and Joe West had come here and visited me, we talked and he asked me: Do you think this party called Wolfman would talk to me? And Joe asked me what his real name was and I told him: I won’t divulge that but I will call him and talk to him. So I called him on the phone and I told him I was talking to Joe West from Texas, and he wanted to know who Joe was and I explained all this to him and I said: Joe would very much like to interview you. I did not give Joe West your name but I told him that you was the one that manufactured the special rounds. He made six rounds for me to take to Texas, all mercury loaded. I said: He wants to talk to you very much. Will you talk with him? And he said: Get back to me! I’ll let you know. He said: I wanna check a few things. The following week Wolfman was dead.
Q- How did he die?
A- I believe he had a heart attack. I have been in contact with nobody that was affiliated with Wolfman since that day.
Q- Tell me about these mercury loads. Can you describe them?
A- Well, it was a 22 round and he took the tips off, he drilled them out and he inserted with an eye drop, he put mercury into the end of the round and he restyled them with wax. This is to make them explode on impact.
Q- Okay, so now you got your weapons ready, now describe the car.
A- The car was a ’63 Chevy two door Burgundy. Chevy Impala.
Q- With the special compartment?
A- Oh yeah, we had a special compartment in the dash, we had the backseat, you could take that off, pull the bottom part up, raise the back up, snap it up little clams and take that out. We had the springs removed behind the seat there by it and we had little racks welded in there so we could mount weapons in there.
Q- Okay, so now you’ve got your weapons, you got your loads and you got your car. How did it come together after that?
A- Well, just before I left, the final instructions Chuck told me: I want you to leave first thing in the morning. He said: I don’t want you driving at night. I want you on the highway with a lot traffic during daytime where nobody pays any attention to you.
Q- Go back and give me a date or approximately.
A- I don’t remember the date but I went down like week before the assassination. I wanna say I was in the Dallas area five days before the assassination took place.
Q- And what was the purpose of that?
A- The purpose of that was for me to go to Dallas, look over the area, learn dead-end streets, railroad crossings, times of train crossings. They already knew the regular motorcade route that he would be taking, and they had already looked that over and they wanted to see if there were any better places. A lot of people had already decided on, I’m not the one that chose Dealey Plaza, but I was told to look it over very closely and see if I thought there was any place better. And I did the whole area from the route they had. All the way through I had Lee Harvey Oswald with me.
Q- All right, go back, about a week ahead of time, I think it was on Monday as I recall?
A- I’m not sure…
Q- Okay, but you left Chicago. Let’s start .You left Chicago and you went to…
A- No, I didn’t leave on a Monday. I left on left either on a Thursday or a Friday morning, I don’t remember which, I know I was in Mesquite, Texas Saturday morning. Because that was when Lee Harvey Oswald showed up at the motel where I was at. I arrived there on a Friday. I’m pretty sure it was Friday when I arrived there.
Q- Did you call anybody when you got to Dallas?
A- I made two telephone calls when I got there. I called Charles Nicoletti; I told him I was on the scene and where I was at in case he had to reach me. I turned around and made another phone call, I called David Atlee Phillips. I had a number to call, the call was put through to David Phillips and he was notified where I was at. Because I had not told him in advance that I was going to Dallas, Texas.
Q- And why did you call David Atlee Phillips?
A- Because he always had to know where I was at because he was my controller?
A- CIA purposes, special operations or something that might be needed done.
Q- Were you supposed to stay in contact with him?
A- We always stayed in contact. We had numbers to call.
Q- What happened after that?
A- He said „thank you” and let it go with that. We didn’t have any great discussion on the phone; I told him where I was at, the location. And through David Atlee Phillips is the only way that Lee Harvey Oswald could have known where I was at. Because I called no one else. I made two phone calls.
Q- Where were you staying?
A- I was staying at the Lamplighter Inn, right there in Mesquite, Texas.
Q- And then the next thing you knew, Lee Harvey Oswald shows up.
A- The following morning Lee Harvey Oswald was there. When he knocked on the door, I opened the door and I was shocked to see him, because I didn’t think that anybody knew where I was at except for these other two people.
Q- Why is Phillips the only one who could have sent Lee Harvey Oswald?
A- Because Charles Nicoletti had never met Lee Harvey Oswald.
Q- He didn’t know him?
A- He did not know him.
Q- You say you were shocked to see him, but did you know Lee Harvey Oswald?
A- I had known Lee Harvey Oswald prior to that, yes.
Q- How did you know him?
A- I knew him from earlier operations that we were on with David Phillips when I was running semi automatic 45 caliber submachine guns down to Clinton, Louisiana. They were, I think they were manufactured by Knoxville Arms. They were not the old Thompson, they looked like a Thompson submachine gun, but they were not Thompson. They were only semi automatic and they were very cheaply made.
Q- And how did you meet Lee Harvey Oswald? Who introduced you?
A- I met Lee Harvey Oswald through David Atlee Phillips. When I got down there, he introduced me to Lee.
Q- Was it your understanding that Phillips was also Oswald’s CIA contact?
A- I learned that when I was down there. That is the first time he introduced me to Lee Harvey Oswald and he also instructed me that Lee could be trusted and that he was Lee’s controller.
Q- I need that as a statement
A- He made it a statement. Because I wanted to know who I was dealing with and who I was giving weapons to.
Q- No, I need you to make a statement that “I was introduced by Phillips, who was my CIA handler and I was told that he was Oswald’s handler.”
A- We didn’t call them handlers back then, we called them controllers.
A- Okay, David Atlee Phillips, he introduced me to Lee Harvey Oswald. And upon doing this, he also explained to me that he was Lee Harvey Oswald’s controller, the same as he was mine. That he was always in contact with Lee, with Lee Harvey Oswald.
Q- So that’s how you know. That’s where the word came from for Oswald to come meet you in Dallas?
A- So that’s how common sense told me the only one that could have sent Lee Harvey Oswald, was David Atlee Phillips. And when I opened the door and Oswald was there, I was kind of shocked to see him, because I didn’t know that he knew I was there. And so I asked: Lee, what the hell are you doing here? Because I was shocked, you know. He said: I was advised to drop by and spend some time with you and see if I could help you out. “Help me out?” He said: Yes, somebody wants me to show you the area. And I said: Okay, come on in. So he came in and we sat down and we talked and I said: I’ll be with you in a few minutes. And I was young and cocky at that time and had just come out of the shower and everything and I was combing my hair and actually I had a camera there, so I told Lee: Hey, make a couple of pictures of me while I’m here in Texas! And so Oswald made a couple of pictures of me and then he said: Let me have the film, I can have it developed! No, no, I said, I’ll get the whole roll of film. So that’s how I got a couple of pictures made, that people have recently asked me about.
Q- Which camera was it? Yours or…?
A- My camera. But he was gonna take the film, turn it in and get it developed. But I said: No, no!
Q- You wouldn’t let that film go?
A- I do my own work!
Q- How did he arrive at the motel?
A- He arrived driving a blue Falcon. Ford Falcon.
Q- Do you remember what year model?
A- No, I don’t. It wasn’t brand new, it was a couple of years old.
Q- Mmm, so he could drive?
A- Yes, he could drive. When he met me in Clinton, Louisiana, he drove up in aah… I wanna say a Chevrolet truck, it could have been a Ford, it was a pick-up truck, let me put it that way; it was an old pick-up truck. And we put the weapons into the back end of it and pulled the tarp down over the weapons.
A- What color? Do you remember what color pick-up?
A- I believe it was green. It was a real … .I don’t know, dirty, yucky, green, whatever you gonna call it. Darker green, you know, it hadn’t been washed in a long time and there was a lot of rust on it. That’s about the best way to describe it.
Q- So did you and Lee Oswald drive around in Dallas?
A- We drove around Dallas, Lee Harvey Oswald and I, we drove around Dallas for five days right up to before the assassination. I did not see Lee Harvey Oswald on the morning of the assassination. But prior to that Lee Harvey Oswald had been with me every day. We drove around, he showed me different streets, different areas. He was the one that took me out to the place southeast of Mesquite there, next to a big junkyard. We went out in a field, he said: Nobody is going to bother you out here. Because I wanted to calibrate the scopes, you know, not only for the Fireball but for the other weapons as well. And while I was out there firing weapons and ejecting shell casings, Lee was picking them up and holding them in his hand. Because I didn’t want to leave no casings or nothing behind and I’m busy firing, so I looked at Lee and said, “Lee, grab them casings.” And that’s what he did. He picked them and held on to them. I calibrated my scopes, set things up, put the stuff back in to the car and we got back in. We were driving around and I wanted to know the railroad crossings, I wanted to wait and see at what times trains come through, I wanted to know if they were passengers or freight trains. Whether they stopped, intersection is gonna be blocked. Dead-end streets, construction work, where every intersection was at, where all the lights were at, how long the lights were staying red. I wanted to know all these little details.
Q- Did anybody show up or give you any static while you were out there sighting the weapons?
A- No, nobody. When I was test firing the weapons, nobody at all leaving or coming out, looked at me, and there wasn’t any house or anybody close by, we were off the main highway there. Like I say, nobody came around, nobody even cared.
Q- How much time were you two together during the day?
A- We were test firing weapons for I would say approximately 20, 30 minutes. But during the day we probably spent no more than 5 hours, 6 hours together.
Q- So all that time he could not have been working in the Texas school book depository?
A- No, he worked in the book depository store, is what he told me. I was never in that place, but he had time off to come out and spend time with me and then I would drop him off in the area and he would go somewhere and I guess that’s where he went. I never asked where he went, what he had done and who he saw.
Q- So that must have been a cover job.
Q- Okay, it gets to be let’s say Thursday before the assassination, how did it all come down?
A- That Thursday I went on back to the motel, I dropped him off that afternoon, I went on back to the motel to get some rest. And the following morning, I had gotten a message that I was supposed to call Leo at the Dallas Cabana, and I called over there and answer the phone to Leo, because Mr. Nicoletti didn’t want his name used. I knew he had come in late, I didn’t know when he had come in; I didn’t even know how he got there. But when I came in, I was told to come over there and park and Johnny Roselli was to come down. He wanted me to drive Johnny Roselli to Fort Worth. I pull out up front and waited, he came down a few minutes after I pulled up. I never went into the hotel and never asked for anybody. He came down and went outside because he knew I was in route. And I drove from there to Fort Worth, Texas with Johnny Roselli in the car.
Q- So Mr. Nicoletti went with you?
A- No, Mr. Nicoletti did not go.
Q- Just Roselli?
A- Just Johnny Roselli went with me to Fort Worth.
Q- Did you know Roselli prior to that?
A- I had met Johnny Roselli before. I met him in Florida, Miami.
Q- Did you do any jobs with him?
A- Never any jobs, but I talked with him and we went around. We were probably involved in some of the same operations and things, with the same people, but we never went out and did anything together.
Q- Were you aware that Roselli was working together with the government in anti-Castro activities?
A- Yes, I was well aware of that.
Q- Make a statement.
A- I was well aware that Johnny Roselli was involved in the government actions. He was like the liaison between CIA and organized crime. And he was heavily involved in the invasion of Cuba, the Bay of Pigs, Chinaos Bay, whichever you prefer to call it. But he was also very tight with Frank Sturgis. Frank Sturgis headed up the S.A.O., which is the Secret Army Organization, what this is all about. And they had so many different codenames for wanting to kill Castro, I wouldn’t even, I couldn’t even name half of them. But every time you turned around, somebody had a new operation going.
Q- Did you ever hear Mr. Roselli being called “Colonel” or did he have any military credentials?
A- Aah, I don’t remember what the total name was, I know he was called Colonel once in a while, I can’t remember the name of it but I know he was called Colonel. But that was uh … as far as I know Johnny Roselli never held any rank of any kind. But like I say, he was involved heavily with the CIA, he was a liaison between them, what his actual part was I don’t know, but I know he was heavily involved with them. And all through that.
Q- I think it was “Ralston – Colonel Ralston”?
A- Yeah, Ralston! That’s it! Colonel Ralston. That’s what they called him, Colonel Ralston.
Q- Okay. So tell us about the trip over to Fort Worth.
A- The trip over to Fort Worth. Well, I didn’t know we were going to Fort Worth. He told me he had directions and I don’t know if he had ever been there before or not, but we went to Fort Worth, I remember the exit was like University Avenue or University Boulevard; it was named University, that’s all I know. I know it was on the south side and then sitting on the west side of that street. Just a couple of blocks off there, the pancake house. Fairly new one.
Q- It’s still there.
A- Well, I didn’t know it’s still there, but they make good pancakes, I know that. That’s where I had my first Belgian waffle.
Q- Why did you go all the way to Fort Worth?
A- Excuse me; I’ve got to clarify one thing: I didn’t have a Belgian waffle that morning. I had the Belgian waffle there a few years later. But that morning when I got there, Johnny Roselli went there to meet somebody by the name of Jack Ruby. I had never known Jack Ruby, nothing about him. When I got there and pulled in the parking lot, Johnny Roselli told me: Let me go in first, see where I’m going to sit, come in and position yourself. And he asked me: Are you carrying? And I said: Yeah, I’m carrying. He said: Good! When I sit down, where I am sitting at, I don’t know what may transpire. He said: Something could go wrong. Be very alert! Keep my backside covered! I won’t be in your line of fire. And I said: Okay, I pick an open field of fire. Where ever I figure I can handle it. I said: Go sit down and I’ll come in position myself. Johnny Roselli went in and they had like, you can call it a booth, a table, there wasn’t anything before it or nothing, but he sat down in that. And I went (inaudible) right behind him. I positioned myself at the counter, ordered a cup of coffee; I was served and sat there. And then I sit there and I watch and saw a short stocky built man come in, walked over, Johnny got up, they shook hands, they sit down, they talked for a couple of minutes. I see him take like a half-size, like a legal envelope, but only half that size, out of his jacket and he laid it and pushed it across the table to Johnny Roselli. He got up, they shook hands, this man left, Johnny waited maybe two minutes. Johnny looked at me, I got up, I walked out the restaurant, made sure the area was clear, nobody outside in the parking lot, I went over and got in the car, started up and pulled up by the door, Johnny Roselli walked out, got in the car and we drove away.
Q- Did you ask him or did you find out in some way what was in the envelope?
A- On the way back to Dallas, Johnny and me was driving down the road, he didn’t open the envelope right away. We got almost up to, I think its Arlington, it’s about halfway there. I’m saying halfway, could be less one way or the other, it’s been a long time for me. But we were right about Arlington and Johnny opened the envelope, takes the stuff out and is looking at it. While he is looking at it, he noticed I am watching over while I am driving, and he’s got them little black wallets, like half-size, like identification wallets. And he opened them up and there is identification plates in them and there’s badges on them. At that point I didn’t know what the identification on it was. Because he is sitting there and looking at it, and I’m not going to lean over and I’m not going to say: Give me one of those, or anything like that. I wait, when he wants me to know, he will tell me. And then he opened up a piece of paper and he unfolded it. And there has been a lot of discrepancy over this part now. But Johnny Roselli said: They only made one change in the route.
Q- That was the motorcade?
A- It was a map of Dealey Plaza, the motorcade route. When he looked at it, for Dealey Plaza, he said they have only made one alter, one change in it. He said: That’s all. And I said: What’s that? And he said: They are going to go down Elm Street. They’re going to stop and make a detour, coming around this little street here. And he held it up and I kinda glanced over but I didn’t get a chance to look at it real good at that point. But I had already re-conned the area so I knew what he was talking about. And I know that everybody says: They had the motorcade in the newspaper, weeks and months ahead of time. Sure they did. But they didn’t have that one change. And if anybody wants to show somebody a newspaper clip, anybody check real close, because the original route they were not coming down Elm Street there. On that little detour, where they had the slowdown.
Q- Had you heard prior to that, when they got to Dealey Plaza that they would just continue straight on Main Street? Was that the idea?
A- The original plan was that we would be shooting at a fast moving target. And Nicoletti had no military experience and I already had advised him that he would have to shoot high and the target would be running away from him. That he would have to shoot above the head. And we were going for a headshot; I told him „it’s going to be hard for you to hit him from there.”
We’re getting a little bit ahead though. Before we got into this part…
Q- Yeah, let’s go back…
A- Because Chuck hadn’t got to Dallas that week. He only came in; I hadn’t seen him that morning. I had not seen Chuck in person until I went with Johnny Roselli to Fort Worth and come back. Johnny Roselli got out of the car and went upstairs, Charles Nicoletti came down. Mr. Nicoletti got into the car with me and we drove to Dealey Plaza.
Q- Okay, backup for just a second: How did Roselli get to Dallas?
A- At that point Roselli, he mentioned to me. Johnny Roselli. We were on the way to Fort Worth and I asked him: When did you get in? He said: I got in this morning. I got in early this morning. I haven’t been here but for a couple of hours. And I said: How did you get in? And he said he got lucky. He caught a ride on a plane that is sponsored by the Central Intelligence Agency, the CIA. I said: How the hell did you manage that one? He said: I got lucky. He had somebody there. I didn’t ask no more. He didn’t elaborate any more than that; I didn’t dig any deeper than that.
Q- He didn’t mention an abort team at that time?
A- Not at that point. So we got all that. Now then, when we got back I still don’t know that he was there on an abort mission. I have no knowledge of that at this point of the game. Johnny Roselli got out of the car, went back into the hotel. I waited maybe 5 or 7 minutes for Charles Nicoletti to come down. When he got down, Mr. Nicoletti got into the car with me and said: Let’s go! We took off and I say: Whereto? He says: Take me over by the Plaza. We went over, we parked, it’s drizzling rain, we get out and we’re walking around. This is the first time that Charles Nicoletti has even mentioned to me about an abort team. And he asked me.
Q- When was that?
A- Well, when we were walking around, Charles Nicoletti asked me, “ How do you feel about being backup?” I say, “ What do you mean backup?” He says, “How would you feel about being backup as a shooter for me?” I said, “What happened to Johnny? What’s with Johnny?” And he said, “Johnny is a little bit paranoid on this.” He says, “ the CIA called the hit off.” He said, “They don’t want the hit to go down” And I said, “ What do you say?” Chuck’s exact words were, “Fuck ‘em. It’s going anyway.” And I told him, “What about Johnny?” Well, he says, “Johnny will be with me, but he is not gonna be a shooter. He doesn’t want to go against the orders. He’s been told, he flew in here specifically to abort this assassination.”
Q- Could you say he got cold feet?
A- No, when we were talking when I asked him about Johnny Roselli and I said, “How come Johnny isn’t going to be a shooter?” He said, “Well, he doesn’t want to go against the orders of the CIA.” What he wants, he wants to call it off. He flew in here as an abort team. They flew a plane in here especially with him on it, to tell us to call it off. And so I asked him at that point, I said: what do you say? He said, “Fuck ‘em! It’s a go. We’re gonna do it” He says, “Jimmy, you know we can’t call this off. Only one man can stop it. He said: He’s here and if he wants us to stop it, he’ll notify me. I’m not going on somebody else’s word. He says: As far as it is right now, I have a go from the boss. We’re going!
Q- Now who was the one man who could have stopped it?
A- There was only one man. Charles Nicoletti did not say his name at that point. He just said „the boss“, I knew who he was referring to, he was referring to Sam Giancana.
Q- Who was he?
A- Sam Giancana, he was the number 2 man at that time. A lot of people is gonna tell you it was number 1. But it’s not true. Tony Accardo was still running things. He turned things over, he had Sam Giancana running all his operations and everything, but Tony Accardo was still the man and he was still calling the shots on whatever went down, whatever was done.
Q- The only thing Giancana said, had to have at least the okay of Accardo?
A- It had to be sanctioned and it had to come through Tony Accardo.
Q- We’re talking about the Chicago crime family?
A- We’re talking about only the Chicago area alone.
Q- I have a question right there. To your knowledge was there involvement of any other crime families? Marcello, Trafficante?
A- I knew of no other crime family being involved, I heard rumors, but do I know if anybody else was involved? No, I do not know if anybody else was involved. That would have been out of character for them to even notify me about that, or anybody else. That only stays up in the higher ranks of the family, or the people or the crime family; however you wish to describe it. And when things were handed out, like different departments, like different people get different things. Somebody might be into bookmaking, somebody handles the bookmaking, they passed that out to one party. This party, he distributed it amongst the people in the area, but everybody had a little what we call territory at that time. And somebody else might be in the loan sharking. And you might have somebody running (inaudible). You might have somebody that was running chop shops, which eventually I got into, which led to my federal prison sentence. But when it comes down to murder contracts, that was a whole new thing. Then we had somebody else that handled the liquor licenses. But everything was distributed amongst different people. And whatever moved, including the garbage at that time, even the garbage was controlled by the Outfit. And one party, and this can all be confirmed, I believe he is still alive, he is very old now, but his name was Zucchero, he had the garbage pick-up at that time there. And he was strictly informed that if he picked up another can of garbage, he would be in his next garbage truck going out to the dump. They took over his business and then he went into the junkyard business. And later on down the road, he became involved in a place out in Elk Grove Village, a very big place called Globe auto wreckers. His sons now run it.
Q- So once Mr. Nicoletti said, “We’re going anyway” what happened then? Start with about what time that was!
A- This would be approximately 10:30. This here would be approximately 10:30 am Johnny Roselli, excuse me, Mr. Nicoletti told me, he asked me to be the backup shooter. And that was the first inkling of anything that I would be involved in the assassination itself. Prior to that I was to only know the area and transport weapons.
Q- Was the weather clearing by that time?
A- It had started to clear at about 10:45. I believe, the best I can remember, I could be off a few minutes. I know it had been drizzling rain, it was cold, it was damp, the sun didn’t come out until after 11 AM I believe. But like I say again I could be off a few minutes on it. It’s a long time ago.
Q- Okay, the weather is clearing; it’s about 10:00 and let’s see, what happened?
A- I told Mr. Nicoletti: Yes, I would be honored to back you on it. Anything you ask, you know, I’ll do! And so, most of this had already been pre-arranged, beyond my knowledge, this Plaza had been selected, I did not select it, someone else had already selected it and he asked me where I thought would be the best place for him. And I told him the Dal-Tex building. Because the Dal-Tex building gave him a better shot with them taking a straight run-through at a high rate of speed. And evidently, I’m quite certain that they had all that pre-arranged on that part of it, because that place was his location, for him and Johnny, as far as that goes, because they already had made an arrangement to be admitted into the building.
Q- Why do you think he checked that with you then? Why did he ask you?
A- Oh, he didn’t check it, he just asked my opinion. He had always questioned me about different things. He used me like a sounding-board. Like maybe, you know, you’re in a business or in an office; you might ask one of the people around you, “What do you think about this?” You don’t really care what he thinks, you’re just asking for an opinion to see what he thinks. Maybe you overlooked something, or maybe somebody has a better idea than you do at this time of the game.
Q- Could it also be that you had military training and experience, when Nicoletti had…
A- Oh, that’s possible. He respected me for my knowledge of weapons, my knowledge of knowing terrain, because I had been in combat and the first thing when you walk into an area, to you it’s a landscape, to me its terrain. Because if I walk in and I walk into an ambush, I want to know where the low spots are, where the high spots are, where all the coverage is. I gotta know where I can get my rear end down so I don’t get it shot off. You’ve got to have a place to go to the ground in a hurry. You can not afford to stand around and be looking around and wondering: Gee, where can I go from here? If you do, you’re dead! You’ve got to think, that’s why you take all the training in the military. You are trained not to think, but to react.
Q- And Mr. Nicoletti had never been in the military or had he?
A- Not to my knowledge, he never served a day in the army. Or any military service as far as that goes.
Q- Where did you serve?
A- I was in the army, 82nd Airborne. I took my basic at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, I took my AIT at Fort Polk, they screwed up my orders and I went to Fort Seals and laid there for week, maybe ten days, from there I went to Fort Bragg to go airborne. I went into the service in January of 1959.
Q- Where were you assigned?
A- When I left, we left I think it was July, the tenth, we went from there to Laos. We were on an operation called operation called White Star. A handful of military advisors were going over to train people in Laos there, to do certain operations, at that time we really weren’t supposed to do any black bag stuff and things, we were just going in to train and equip people, and I found a lot of it pretty hilarious: We armed a lot of them and gave them weapons and they all took the stuff and they ran up north and we had to fight them later. But that’s how we basically had down all the way through the years in history.
Q- Did they call it counter insurgency at that time?
A- Oh yeah, they called it counter insurgency. What I found the most amazing of all was this place called Vientiane (inaudible), just outside of Vietnam. Not Vietnam, don’t get it confused, this is Laos, up in the central part of a place called the Plane of Jars, there is a large, well, a pretty good sized town up there, called Vientiane. On the runways, most of them were dirt; they had steel matting down on it for planes to land on. The Russians used the same runways that we did. We drank in the same taverns that the Russians drank in. We shopped at the same stores. We knew the Russians, they knew us. But we didn’t bother each other. They trained their people, we trained other people. It was just a close operation.
Q- Was there more than one of these White Star teams?
A- There were several White Star teams, but they all worked in individual groups and one group would never know what the other group was doing for a specific reason: Each group was on its own to a certain extent, but they did not know what the next group was doing in case they were captured, tortured, killed or whatever, they could give nobody up.
Q- Did you ever hear the name Colonel Fletcher Prouty?
A- Yes I did. Colonel Fletcher Prouty, he was the man in charge. Excellent man, excellent warrior, soldier. Good leader.
Q- You knew him?
A- I knew Colonel Fletcher Prouty personally, yes.
- Cut in tape -
Q- Nicoletti, he decides the Dal-Tex building is the place to go … and what made you choose the grassy knoll?
A- Mr. Nicoletti asked me: So if you back me up, Jimmy, what do you think would be the best spot for you? And I said: Well, the spot I like best is up on the grassy knoll behind that stockade fence. He says, “Why there?” I said, “I’ve got the railroad yard for cover.” I said, “With my clothes I can turn my jacket inside out, it’s plaid on the inside, it looks like railroad workers. Somebody out there wearing a flannel shirt, nobody is going to pay attention to me.” I said, “I can go over there, walk around a piece of (inaudible), walk up and down those boxcars, cross the railroad tracks, look at things, I’ll just be another worker, nobody will even look at me. And he said, Okay, what weapon are you going to use over there? And I told him … and I said: Well, what’s the situation? Chuck said: We’re going for a head shot now. I said: This I understand, I realize this. He said: You are not going to fire unless it becomes a necessity. He says: If I miss, then it’s gonna be up to you. He says: But you don’t fire, unless I miss. It’s gonna be your call at that point. So you got to be very alert on this. And I told him: Don’t worry about me. I got it, boss! And he said: What are you gonna use? I said: I’m gonna use the Fireball. And he looked at me and he says: Why? Why the Fireball? Now, the Fireball, for people who don’t know what a Fireball is, it’s like a cut down rifle. It’s actually basically this long. It’s a weapon that was well ahead of its time, this was one of the prototypes, the agency had gotten a hold of it, it had been manufactured by Remington. Now, a lot of people are gonna tell you that this particular weapon was not available at that time. But this weapon was available. It didn’t go on sale until a few years later. But this weapon had been manufactured as early as in 1961. We had a lot of trouble with the barrel blowing up when we used too big a round on it or something, overloads in it. A lot of problems with it, but they finally reinforced the barrel, we got it where it worked pretty good. And Chuck asked me, “Why the Fireball because you’ve only got one shot?” Because the Remington Fireball 2.22 is a single shot bolt action pistol and you can mount a scope on it. “Well, if I’m gonna wait until you are through,” I said, “I’m gonna get one shot anyway, so it doesn’t really matter because I’ll never get a chance for a second shot because I will wait till the last possible moment.” He said, “Okay, it’s your call.”
Q- Where did you get hold of a prototype weapon like the XP-100?
A- It was given to me by David Phillips. I had received this maybe a year prior or 8 months. A year prior to the assassination. The gun had been used twice before on assassinations, but nobody like a president or nothing. It was good for using if you want to get into a close place area or somewhere. Somebody might say why use a pistol? Well, anybody that knows their weapons, this particular piece is very accurate. Very accurate up to 100 yards. At 100 feet I’m talking about, we’re shooting now from the grassy knoll down to the highway, to the street there, we’re talking roughly 30, 35 yards. We’re only talking a 100 feet; this is like shooting fish in a barrel. And especially with a 3 power scope on it. But the weapon had been used before, you could put it in a briefcase, you could walk anywhere with it, nobody would pay any attention to it. The case I had set up, I had a little loading press inside for it, in case I had to manufacture anything, I had a little holder for all the special rounds that were in it. Everything was packed, foam rubber inside, the case was watertight, waterproof.
Q- What did the case look like?
A- The case was black. It was like an oversized briefcase basically speaking.
Q- Leather on the outside?
A- Leather on the outside. It had some little metal flaps on it, you know, for locking it up, you could lock the case. But I wasn’t concerned about locking it. But the thing is you could take it, you could go anywhere, you looked like a businessman with it. And I felt that was the best weapon to go with. And so. Mr. Nicoletti agreed with me on it and said: Okay, it’s your call, Jimmy. And that’s what we agreed on. So then, like I say, the Dal-Tex building, that had to have been previously arranged with them, because they already had made arrangements to get the people in there. So the Dal-Tex could not have been a last minute decision, as far as that goes. Like me saying: Okay, yeah, I think the Dal-Tex building. He just used me as sounding board.
Q- When you say, “had arranged to get you in the Dal-Tex,” I mean that was an office building anybody could walk in and out. You are talking about getting into a specific office?
A- Getting into a specific office, into a specific area somebody
Q- Make a statement
A- Okay. The reason they needed somebody there to get ‘m inside: Anybody can walk in and out. But the sole purpose of having a connection there, somebody that could get you into a place, into an office where you could open the door and you could have a window to shoot from. If you don’t have an opening, it don’t do you any good to get in that building. You’ve got to be able to get into somebody’s office, offices not being used, nobody around, otherwise the doors are just being locked, you have no way in.
Q- Do you happen to know which office that was?
A- No, I do not know which office it was.
Q- So what did you do?
A- What did I do? We walked around the plaza for a little bit. I took him back over, I dropped Mr. Nicoletti back off at the Dallas Cabana. And he got with Johnny, they therefore went back over there, I told them where the car would be pulled up alongside the building there and parked. He told me that they would come out of the building and they would get in that car. Now, I did not drop Charles Nicoletti or Johnny Roselli off at the Dal-Tex building. They got into the building, they were there on their own. I told them where the car would be, it’s his car, he knows this car. He knows what my job is, they will be in the car. He will be in front seat, Johnny will be in the backseat, I’ll get under the driver’s wheel, I’ll set my briefcase between the front and the backseat and we’ll drive away.
Q- Where did you drop them off?
A- When we pulled out from the side of the building, I made a right-hand turn onto Houston, I believe that would be going north, I’m not sure on my directions, but I made a right on Houston and I went up Houston to a major intersection, about four or five blocks, maybe six blocks, whatever it was. Then I took a left-hand turn. I went down close to the freeway there. There is a gas station there. I wanna say Texaco but it could have been something else, it might even have been a Mobil, I’m not sure now. But they had a car there. This is where they had told me to stop, this is where he told me he would be getting out at. You know: „Go down here, we’ve got a car there waiting for us“ And I go down there, they open the door and they get out. They start walking across the parking lot.
Q- Now this is before .?
A- This is after the assassination.
Q- After? Okay, I thought it was before, You said you didn’t let them off at the Dal-Tex building .
A- No, I took Charles Nicoletti back to the Dallas Cabana to meet with Johnny Roselli. Okay?
Q- After you were walking around Dealey Plaza?
A- After we walked around Dealey Plaza. There is still another hour to go probably before the assassination is gonna go down.
Q- Go back and make that statement: After we walked around for about an hour…
A- Okay. After we walked around Dealey Plaza I took Mr. Nicoletti back to the hotel, let him out of the vehicle, he went up and got with Johnny Roselli. I took the car back to where it was supposed to be, made arrangements . because he had asked me: What if you can’t get a parking space? I said: Don’t worry, I’ll have a parking space. If I have to, I steal a car and move it out of there. I said: We’ll be parked there, just look for the car. And at this point he told me: If we come out, I want the car close so I can get into it right away. Because he would be carrying a rifle underneath this topcoat, his jacket, his topcoat. And would come out of there and secure that in the trunk. He would put it in the trunk, he had a key to the trunk. He put that in the trunk, close the trunk, Johnny Roselli would get in the backseat, he would get in the passenger side, I would come walking up, I would get in at the driver’s side. I entered my attaché, briefcase, whatever you wanna call it, gun case in between the front and the backseat. I ‘d get in, start the car, we drive away. I’d make a right on Houston, I’d go down several blocks there, I forget the intersection, make a left-hand turn, go down by the gas station, just before you can get by that freeway there, and that would be the Stemmons freeway at that area, and they got out of the car. They had a car waiting there. Which car it was, I don’t know. I never watched them walk across the parking lot to it. As soon as they got out, the door closed, I drove away. I went back to Mesquite, Texas.
Q- Okay, again now, that was after all the shooting .
A- That was after all the shooting
Q – So with Nicoletti you had walked around, you had determined the shooting positions, you take him back to the Cabana and he went up and met with Roselli. Did you stay at the hotel or did you go back to the plaza?
A- After I took Charles Nicoletti back to the hotel, I went back to the plaza, secured the car, got my briefcase out with the gun, with the Fireball in it. I went into the railroad yard. I secured that over there, put it away, so nobody would see it. I reversed my jacket inside out, I had taken my hat, grey fedora, … and my jacket was a grey poplin , we had these car jackets back then, they were like waist length, not a short jacket, they kind of come down a little bit, no car jacket like . made out of a material that they no longer use, it was called poplin. You might even remember that material, the poplin material? Grey color, had a shine to it. That’s what the jacket was like that I was wearing. A pair of grey pants with it. And I reversed the jacket, it had the all-set plaids in it, kind-a-like checkers on the inside. When I turned it over it looked like one of the old grey flannel shirts we used to wear out, you know, when you’re doing work in the yard or something out there. And I walked around the railroad yard and was waiting for the time to pass. The time was coming on. And then I go to the crowd, I went over there by the fence, I got there a little bit, a few minutes early, I reached down and I had taken the scope off the weapon. And I look up, I look over the fence and I was looking for people (thru the scope). What I was looking for, was not to see who I knew, but I was looking for people that would be carrying a bulge, like a butt under the arm, I am looking for somebody with a weapon. This way I have an idea .
Q- Security people?
A- I’m looking for security people, cops, undercover, security, off-duty, whoever might be carrying a weapon. Bulge along their hip, behind their back, like under the arm in a shoulder holster. I’m looking for these little bulges, most people don’t pay no attention to that, but this is what I’m looking for. But then I was amazed when I recognized several people out of the past that were in Dealey Plaza. Did I go talk to them? No, but I recognized them and see them there.
Q- Who was that?
A- I remember Aldo Vera, remember seeing him there. Aah, a lot of people say Jack Ruby was never there, but he was there before the motorcade got there, I know that for a fact, and even though I never knew Jack Ruby, but I was as close to him as I was to you in the coffee shop but I never spoke to him, I was never introduced to him. Never said a word to Jack Ruby. But I was that close, I’m looking at the backside of him and I’m pretty sure that was him. Aah .. Diaz was there, I believe his name was Tony, Tony Diaz is what I knew him as, ..aah, Richard Cain, he was on scene, he was in the crowd, he had been there, he was leaving, he was like walking away, Felix Alderisio, I know he was there that day, where he went I have no idea. But there is several people that I saw.
Q- How about Frank Sturgis?
A- Frank Sturgis, he was there.
Q- How did you know Frank Sturgis?
A- I knew Frank Sturgis from the Bay of Pigs and from the SAO. I also knew Orlando Bosch. He was on scene. Orlando Bosch, I don’t know if you are familiar with his name or not, but he was also present. Ah . there was a few other faces I recognized, I just don’t remember the names for them, because it’s so long ago.
Q- How do you figure all those people were in Dealey Plaza?
A- You know, I couldn’t figure that one out when I was there myself, but it’s like anything else, it’s like everybody . they know something is going to happen. Maybe they know a building is going on fire or something. You know, you’ve got a building burning and it may collapse, everybody runs to see the fire, they should be going the other way. About the only time I have ever seen a lot of confusion was where people where trying to get away, it was a racetrack or some crowded place and somebody yelled „gun“, everybody broke and stampeded. We had a few people out of the racetrack that got hurt that way, they were out of Maywood Park, they got hurt in a stampede like that. But basically speaking, if somebody knows something is going to happen, they have a tendency to go see it. Most people are curious. You know when you ever drive down the highway and you see a wreck, you’re probably guilty of it. You slow the car down and look out the window. Everybody does it. So a lot of people had come there for that reason, probably because they had heard these rumors and stuff that he was going to be assassinated in Dallas. That was no secret. Even the National Security Agency knew that.
Q- What about Eugene Brading?
A- Eugene Braden? He was there that day. He was the … Eugene Braden was there for a specific reason: He had the contacts inside the Dal-Tex building. And he was the one that Charles Nicoletti and Johnny Roselli needed to get them into the private office, some way or another, I have no idea where that office was, I was never in the Dal-Tex building myself, I can’t even describe anything in there.
Q- So you probably stood behind that fence there for some little time?
A- Oh, only for a few …, I stayed away from the fence, I stayed basically in the yard, walk over to the fence, look over, stand a minute, then walk back away again. But I was observing the area.
Q- Were you a smoker at the time?
A- Oh yes, I did smoke.
Q- Were you smoking cigarettes that morning?
A- I had smoked that day. Careless! I probably stepped on several cigarette butts and left them there. Most of them Pall Mall.
Q- Was it muddy back there?
A- It was very muddy. Let me put it this way: A couple of times I even took my shoes, put them above up the little country ledger and scraped the mud off the bottom of them. I hated getting mud on them.
Q- What clothes was Frank Sturgis wearing?
A- I don’t remember exactly the clothes, I remember he had on, like a bomber jacket. Remember the World War II bomber jackets that pilots used to wear? He was wearing one like that. (James Files points to Jim Marrs bomber jacket) Like that, like the one you got right there. He had the brass buttons on it, I remember that. You see that flashing you know.
Q- Which location in Dealey Plaza was he standing? Approximately?
A- I was … where you got the country steps down there by the pergola and between the pergola and the stockade fence, you’ve got a set of country steps to go down. I was to the right of those .
Q- Draw me a map!
A- I’ve got to put my glasses on for that! (laughing) But I don’t wanna sit here drawing, it’s going to take too much time. But he was to the left and just standing off the sidewalk, he was standing in the grass itself.
Q- And this was shortly before the assassination or …
A- This was just a few minutes before the motorcade got there. Like I say, before the motorcade ever arrived on scene and I took the scope off – I didn’t hold the gun up over the fence, I didn’t want nobody to panic at that point – but I had the little scope up in my hand and I look over the fence so I could check to see what there was, I was looking like I said for security people, you know, somebody carrying, somebody packing, because I wanted to know who has got weapons when I go to leave there.
Q- That fence is kind of an L-shape. You know there’s a short area and a long area
A- Yeah, it’s on and off, there is a long area and a short area, but it is not exactly an L, it’s on a slant, like 45 degrees.
Q- So where were you?
A- I was an eight or ten feet down there, there was a tree branch that hung right over me, I was behind that, kind of gave me a little camouflage.
Q- Okay, uh. did you ever see an ambulance come by?
A- No, I never paid no attention. I wasn’t watching the vehicles that passed by, I ‘m looking at people. I never noticed the ambulance.
Q- You didn’t see an ambulance with red lights?
A- No, I might have heard a siren, I don’t remember, I had all that tuned down, I am in another complete mode: Sirens, lights flashing, ambulances, that doesn’t bother me. I’m not there to look for those things, I am there looking for other details, for other things.
Q- Okay. So then what happened? The motorcade came?
A- Aah, I’m checking everything, most everybody, basically where a lot of different people are standing at. And I want to make sure that there, like I say, I don’t have any cops standing right next to me. Because you know, something happens and I have to shoot, you know, I don’t want to have to shoot anybody else unless it becomes a necessity. So I had walked away from the fence and I come back over, secured everything, got it ready, I could hear the rumble, the people murmuring, so you know the motorcade is approaching. So I got ready and opened it up. I’m holding the Remington Fireball down below the fence at this point. The motorcade comes down I believe that’s Main street there, come down at Houston, turn back around onto Elm and come down that little side drive there. And when it came down and made its first right, that’s when I brought the weapon up. And then I’m over the fence and as they come down , made the turn onto Elm there, that’s when I started focusing through the scope and following the car. As shots started ringing out, I started counting the shots, but I’m not counting like 1, 2, 3, and 4, I am counting them as: miss, miss, miss, because I know we are going for the headshot. So I don’t care how many rounds are being fired as long as we get a headshot. So as I’m hearing the shots being fired, I’m counting them as a miss, as a miss, miss. And that’s the only thing I am concerned about. I’ve got the sign there, for the Stemmons freeway that is fixing to come into my field of fire. As far as I could see at this point, the president has not been hit in the head at this time. I’ve seen the body lurch, I know he has been hit, how serious I don’t know. But my last instructions were: We’re going for a headshot. If you have to take a shot, take it, but don’t fire unless it’s a necessity, unless you really have to. He said: Jimmy, don’t fire unless you have to, we want everything from the backside. I am not asking why. Okay, whatever you say. At this point, as he starts to approach and come behind that freeway sign . and I’ve already been instructed not his anybody but Kennedy, because they didn’t want Jackie to get hurt or anybody else, I’m fixing to lose my field of fire. And at this point … either I shoot or I put it in the suitcase and leave. One or the other. I took the shot. I fired one shot, one shot only.
Q- where were you aiming.?
A- Oh, I was aiming for his right eye, which to me is the left side of his head looking head on. But for him it would be his right eye, and when I pulled the trigger, and I’m right in on it, and it’s almost like looking 6 feet away through the scope. As I squeezed, take off my round, his head moved forward, I missed and I come in right along the temple. Just right behind the eye.
Q- Here or in the hairline?
A- Well, I’m not sure, you know I can’t see the penetration, I know I hit him right here (pointing at temple). I know I hit behind the eye. Somewhere within a half inch diameter right there (pointing again).
Q- So there were actually two shots almost simultaneously?
A- You think he got hit as you squeezed?
Q- What I believe is this : … And I got my readings as a marksman, I’m a good shooter, always was, I’m not bragging on my stuff, don’t get me wrong, but that’s what got me my start with David Phillips. Because of something that I did in the service, and I made a mark there and it’s on record and it’s recorded, for headshots, for what I did, and the things that I did. But anyway, to make a long story short, as I am preparing to squeeze off my round, Kennedy’s head moved forward, just as I squeezed. It was already in process, the head started forward. To me . what I believe is, . and I did not see, let me clear the fact now, I never saw Mr. Nicoletti shoot Kennedy, but I know he was the man in the Dal-Tex building, the man supposed to be doing the shooting. Therefore the head started forward and as far as I am concerned Mr. Nicoletti hit him at that point. As I squeezed off my round, the head started forward, I hit it and blew the head backwards.
Q- So the exit went where in the rear?
A- I didn’t hit the rear, but the exit blew out and you could see Jackie .
Q- Yeah, but where was the exit? On the right side or on the left side?
A- Aah, partially, most of it on the right side I guess, back there where this section came right out. Part of the back of the skull, you know, I didn’t go look at it, I didn’t examine it, and a lot of people may find this hard to believe, but I have never read anything on the Kennedy assassination, because I was never interested in it. I did not like John F. Kennedy .
Q- Did you ever see autopsy pictures?
A- They sent me a book and I looked at a few of them, but I didn’t read the book. I wanna say the book they sent me was probably called High Treason. I never read it, I looked at a few other pictures, I just wasn’t interested.
Q- Can I show you a picture and ask you for your comments?
A- You are gonna make me put my glasses on?
Q- That’s one. What do you think of that picture? That’s the back of Kennedy’s head.
A- (Looking at picture) From what I’m looking at here, look like part of the flap on the side is missing. But I don’t see very much on this picture here of the back of the head missing. What I’m looking at here is a lot of hair.
Q- So what’s your conclusion?
A- What is my conclusion? This isn’t the right picture.
A-That is my conclusion! You want my opinion on it, that’s not the right picture!
Q- Hold on! Take your glasses off !
Q- It’s a fake picture, go on and say, “That’s a fake picture” and then keep going .
A- Okay. The photo that I just looked at is, in my opinion that’s a fake picture – that is not the real picture. Because I had seen … a lot of people might say you can’t see nothing through a scope, but I’m gonna tell you something: When you see something burst, let’s say like a watermelon, you ‘re gonna see pieces and stuff flying in different directions and people are gonna be splattered by it. And at this point … (loss of sound)
At this point, I got to figure what she was picking up was a piece of the skull . a lot of people will say you can’t see nothing through a scope like this, but what you’re going to see is like, and I saw it, the head explode. I saw the back side come out and I have seen blood, brains, whatever you’re gonna call it, tissue, hair, the whole thing, going everywhere, just a spray. And if anybody disbelieves this, go and shoot somebody and look through a scope while you’re doing it and watch.
Q- Did you see anybody splattered with blood and matter?
A- Oh, I don’t know who was splattered I think one of the agents, probably one of the Secret Service agents riding on the back of the car. I am only assuming, I will say they probably got splattered because there was stuff everywhere. But one other thing I want to point out about the Remington .222 Fireball. It’s a high velocity pistol, the round travels approximately 3180 feet per second. Now then, for this type of weapon there is very little recoil. Now a lot of people say there is a lot of recoil, it’s gonna jump and you can see nothing. And I have had a lot of criticism over the years over this here. So I’d like for somebody to go out to a firing range somewhere, a gun store and take one of these particular types of weapons that carry a .222 round. You’re gonna find very little recoil. Especially when you are using an extended barrel weapon with a scope on it. You have the weight to hold it down, it’s not jumping and bouncing, you’re not shooting a 44 or 45.
Q- We have verified all that.
A- Okay, but ah .
Q- Okay! So did the motorcade ever come to a stop?
A- The motorcade to the best of my recollection to me and in my mind and everything had slowed down at this point, when the first shot went off, it’s like it stopped, it’s just like it slowed down almost to a crawl or barely moving, maybe it even stopped, I’m not really sure on that point. I know I was waiting, It kept moving, it had to be moving but very slow. Because I was waiting for it to get up behind the sign, I am waiting for something to happen so I don’t have to shoot. Not that I’m afraid to, but if I don’t have to, I don’t want to. But like I say, when the car got even almost up to that Stemmons freeway sign there, and that was one of them old ones, not like these new ones they got today with a nice little skinny metal post and a little sign, these had these wooden legs on or what are you gonna call it. The posts that held it were wood. Anyway, I had my shot. It’s either I shoot now or don’t. I took my shot.
Q- Did you ever notice if any of those rounds hit that sign?
A- No. I don’t know if anybody else’s did or not, but as far as I know their rounds never hit it. I know my round didn’t hit it. Like I say, I fired one shot, I was on target, I’m watching one thing, though that scope I’m watching one thing, I’m watching president John F. Kennedy.
Q- So if a bullet hit that sign you probably didn’t even see it anyway.?
A- No. I didn’t even know Connally was hit at that point in the game.
Q- Were you nervous in any way?
A- Was I nervous? No. If I had been nervous, I would have been shaking, I couldn’t have taken the shot. A lot of people may find this hard to believe, but you have got to understand something: The first time you go into the field of fire, when you go into a firefight in combat, you might be nervous or skimmish. But after you have been initiated into the field of fire or whatever you gonna call it, combat, firefight, a lot of people got different names for it, skirmishes, you get used to it, you get over it. You know, and to me … a lot of people are going to think I am probably sick, but when you get into a firefight, that was the ultimate high. I’ve never used drugs in my life. A firefight to me, being in the service, that was one of the greatest things there was. It was the ultimate high. And at this point, when you’re stalking down somebody, and this particular thing . it stopped me from hunting animals all together. When I was young I used to love to go shoot deer, rabbit, squirrels, whatever I could get, pheasants. But after you went into the jungles and you have hunted men and you stalked a man down and you have hunted a man down on equal terms where he can kill you, you loose interest to go shoot a defenseless animal. I have come to where I loved animals much more than that. I couldn’t kill animals. When my dog had to be put to sleep, my wife and one of my top right-hand men had to take the dog to the vet because I didn’t have the heart to do it.
Q- Were there any, while you were behind the fence, mostly before the shooting started, was there anyone in your vicinity?
A- Aah, there was nobody behind that stockade fence but me at that point. Nobody. All the time I was there, I was alone. But in front of the fence the two people that I was mostly concerned about, they were a couple of guys wearing suits, roughly on top of the grassy knoll there, and they were a little away in front of me, 15 maybe 20 feet away, whatever, you know, I did not know who they were .
Q- In front of the fence would be at the side of the railroad yard?
A- No. The stockade fence. They are between the fence and the sidewalk. Between me and the motorcade. They are on top of the knoll there. They are kinda like looking over everybody and watching people. And this had me a little bit concerned, because I don’t know who they are. At this stage of the game, well, I wanna take my shot, I’ve got the 45 ready if I’ve got to, like I say, I don’t wanna shoot nobody unless I have to. At this point, and I’ve checked them, shoulder holsters, the backsides, I saw no bulges. So as far as I knew they wasn’t packing. So I figured maybe they were just a couple of businessmen. People that wanted to see the president go by. A lot of people are strange, everybody wants to see celebrities go by. But I took the shot and as I was walking away, and like I say I had seen Jackie crawl out there, a motorcycle cop, he threw his bike down, he jumped off and as he came running in a little zigzag or what you want to call it, like he’s really into combat or something, it’s still a wide open target, anybody can shoot him, he has got his pistol out. And uh . he’s running up the knoll there, the two men at the fence, the guys in the suits, they go over and they open up identifications, so I have to figure: These were probably my cover that I’ve never been informed about, but I was told not to worry. They stopped him and he never came no farther. He went back down off the knoll.
Q- You were told not to worry?
A- I was told, Charles Nicoletti told me „when you take the shot, just walk away, don’t run“ He said „Just walk away naturally, Jimmy, don’t draw attention!“ I told him „Don’t worry!“ And I had no intention to break out of there running, but like I say, if somebody comes at me I’m willing to do whatever I have to do to leave the area. If I have to shoot somebody else, that’s what I’ll do at this point of the game.
Q- Okay, so you are 10-15 feet or so down from the corner towards the railroad yard ?
A- Eight or ten feet, some like that, yeah, from the end where .
Q- Were you halfway in between . at the halfway mark of the fence?
A- No, I wasn’t in the middle of the fence. You’ve got the left angle, you’ve got the 45 degree angle for the short part of the fence. Then I’m down maybe 10 feet from there. There’s a tree branch, one branch comes right down the tree there, covered it real good. Halfway is a little more down to my right. That would have been halfway down.
Q- Okay. Did you ever notice a GI? A guy in a cap and uniform?
A- No, I did not.
Q- Okay. Did you notice people on the railroad bridge?
A- I knew there were people up there, but I didn’t pay any attention to them.
Q- They didn’t have a good view of you, because you were under that tree under cover?
A- I am pretty well under cover. The only time that people could have seen me from the viaduct or from the railroad yard, was when I walking down the tracks next to some of the boxcars.
Q- So you recall that nobody was with you behind the fence?
A- I said before, there was nobody behind the stockade fence with me. I am the only person back there. Anybody else back there is over at the railroad yard by the trains.
Q- How about down by the corner there. Did you have a clear view? There’s a lot of cars back there, right? Did you have a clear view? Could somebody have been down by that corner that you might not have seen?
A- They could have been down there. A couple of cars drove through while I was there. But who they were and what kind, I don’t even remember because I just wrote it off. As long as nobody got out and nobody come by me, they were of no concern.
Q- But shortly before there was no one ?
A- Right before the assassination, there was nobody standing next to me.
Q- How about three minutes before the assassination?
A- Not by me. I was alone back there. I had no other party standing by me. Somebody was there in the yard or down at the other end, you know, 30 or 40 feet away, that has no bearing to me because I paid them no attention.
Q- Well, there is this eyewitness report of the guy in the railroad tower, Lee Bowers.
A- Well, he might have been in the tower, but I’m talking about people on the ground walking up by me or passing me.
Q- No, but he’s describing two persons behind the fence. One of them fits the description of you.
A- Mmm, well, maybe he has figured two people when he see me change my jacket and walk away somebody different, I don’t know. But I was alone and there was nobody with me.
Q- All right, so as you walk away and these two guys cover for you, describe your actions then.
A- Oh, as I’m walking away, I’ve got my briefcase, gun case, in my right hand, I’ve got my left hand over by my coat pocket, I’ve got a 45 there, I’ve got it fully loaded with 6 rounds in it, it’s ready to go if I need it .
Q- You have already reversed your jacket?
A- I’ve already reversed my jacket. When I picked up the gun case, I reversed my jacket, no plaid side, I’ve got the poplin grey material on the outside, I took the fedora hat under the sleeve of it, snapped it out and put it back on my head and I walked away, carrying the briefcase and my 45 inside my coat pocket.
Q- How long did it take to do all this?
A- Just a few seconds. It don’t take long.
Q- Put your glasses back on. Is there any chance that is you off the wall back there?
Q- I have a blowup here! This would be probably 50 seconds after .
A- (looking at pictures) Looking at that, I couldn’t say it’s me, but I’m saying you can see somebody there, basically speaking. It could have been.
Q- Is that the direction you took? Did you walk back towards the depository?
A- Yeah, right! I went in that direction.
Q- And there was nobody around you even at that point?
A- At that point there’s nobody around me. I’m not letting anybody get close to me at that point. Because like I say, somebody might try to grab me, they might want to pull a gun on me, I’m looking at people , aah.. somebody turns around, if they make the wrong move, if I see somebody pulling a weapon, they are going to be shot. If I see somebody aah .
Q- This is . there’s a little retaining wall, and right on the other side there is a sidewalk and on there is a little I don’t know, like a garden patch, a little flower garden in that road, that little road that runs in front of the depository .
A- Right! That’s the one that comes into the dead end down here? Yeah, that’s the one.
Q- And that’s right were you were walking?
A- That’s right where I was walking!
Q- Were you on the south side or the north side of the street?
A- I don’t remember. All I remember is I’m walking and I’m watching over my shoulder. I’m trying to see if anybody is coming at me.
Q- Let’s look at this right here (putting Moorman picture before James Files). Is that the tree you were talking about?
A- Yep, you can see the branches from back over here coming right down over the wall.
A- And that’s the vicinity where you were standing?
A- Right there!
Q- In this picture there is a uuh .. an object visible if you blow it up. Right here next to that tree. And if you blow it up it looks . it may look like a hat, or a fedora.
Do you remember which side of the tree you were on? Was it to your left or your right?
A- I could be mistaken, I believe… no, the tree was to my right. It had to be to my right. The tree was to my right because I didn’t want to have the tree in the way to my left. … And you can’t see the sign here, but the sign is right on down here.
Q- Yes, the sign is here . This is the blowup. This is sky and this is sky and this is the shape. Yeah .. Do you see a hat in there?
A- Do I see what?
Q- A hat.
A- Not to me! You’re asking the wrong man. I’ve got a hard time seeing with these glasses, believe me.
Q- Okay, but this spot is right next to the tree- Did you ever notice those people?
A- Aah, there was people out there … (looking at another picture) I remember more people than that being around. I don’t know where they all disappeared to. But aah. I remember people falling down, laying down, jumping down, whatever you wanna call it. People moving to get out of the way, going in other directions, some standing around pointing, and who they were, what they were wearing, I couldn’t even start to tell you.
Q- What about these two guys right here (pointing at umbrella man and his accomplice)? Did you notice them? Or did any of those look familiar or did any of those look like some of the guys that you saw, that you recognized?
A- They could have been. It’s hard to tell from this here. But like I say, when the motorcade comes, I wasn’t looking at nobody else. I don’t know where everybody went, I didn’t really care.
Q- By the time the motorcade got there, the sun was out, pretty bright. It was warm right?
A- Yep. Yep, it was nice out. It broke to be a nice day.
Q- It was nice. Did you see anybody with an umbrella?
A- Aah . I remember somebody down past me to the right towards the viaduct, they had an umbrella, but what they were doing I don’t know. I’ve heard the theories of the umbrella man shooting somebody with an umbrella but ah .
Q- You don’t believe that?
A- I don’t believe that, not for one minute.
Q- Why not?
A- Why not? It would be kind of silly for somebody to take one an umbrella when you can’t even aim it. All you can do is point it. And you’re still gonna be shooting at a moving target, and it had to be a very small caliber, because they didn’t come in big calibers and they were used basically for in-house operations when you are right on the target when you use it.
Q- Ah . so it was a weapon that you knew of .. at that time?
A- Oh yeah. The agency, they had those, yeah. Not only did they use hem .
Q- In 1963 it was the CIA, right? In 1963 the CIA had an umbrella weapon and then tell us what you just said.
A – In 1963 the Agency, which I’m referring to as the CIA, they had weapons, basically based on an umbrella, like you can use it, walking canes, some of them carried a small caliber round. You couldn’t put a big caliber in there. To me the weapon was strictly an in-house weapon where you had to be right on top of the target. There is no way you can stand out on a sidewalk and take an umbrella and point it at a moving target without aiming. I mean this is a lot of fantasy here. I thought the umbrellas, and they come out with them and they had the little darts in them, they had the poison on the end of them where you could jab a guy going downstairs or in a house or in a room, any place where there is a lot of people moving, mulling around together. You can walk up to somebody and you can shoot a fairly small 22 caliber round in him. But as far as somebody using an umbrella on a sidewalk and firing a round, no, that’s a lot of fantasy.
Q- (Showing picture of umbrella man and accomplice) That guy is packing, isn’t he?
A- Yeah, he’s packing. Well, I gotta tell you: I don’t know if it is or not for sure, but the one on the other side at the left of that pole that I’m looking at. On my right, this one right here, that sure favors Frank Sturgis.
Q- It favors Frank Sturgis?
A- Yeah, right here. Look at the hairline. It’s a blurry picture, but look at that hairline.
Q- The hairline? Well, it’s too blurry too tell,
Q- Okay. Uuh ..All right, so you walk away . Oh, by the way, where did you park the Chevrolet? You parked the Chevrolet on Houston Street?
A- I’m not sure if it’s Houston. Right next to the Dal-Tex building. No, Houston, Houston Street is the one that’s going up and down.
Q- The School Book Depository is over here and the Dal-Tex building is over here!
A- Yeah, right!
Q- Ah .. Did you park on that street?
A- I parked on the street right next to it, yeah.
Q- Was it head-in parking, or was it a parking lot, or was it straight
A- Well, what you want to call it. A parking space, parking lot. Aah .. parking aisle, whatever you want to call it. Cars were parked there.
Q- A row of cars?
A- Rail of cars, row of cars. I backed it in there and parked it so he (Nicoletti) could have access to the trunk.
Q- So the back end to your . the front end to the road ?
A- Yeah, Well, front end pointing forward.
Q- Yeah, forward towards the road. I’m getting ahead here, but when you left you turned right?
A- When I came out of there, I made a right hand turn.
Q- Onto Houston?
A- Onto Houston, yeah, going north.
Q- All right. So that’s where you parked it?
A- That’s where I parked the car.
Q- So as you walked past, did you just walk straight to the car?
A- I went straight to the car. I didn’t bother and paid no attention to nobody. I went right to the car. What was going on around me, I don’t know, I can’t tell you what passed me, I can’t tell you who was looking at me and I can’t tell you how many people were around. I had one thing on my mind. Anybody approaching me with the determination to stop me, to question me, detain me, whatever you wanna call it, or anything else, all I wanna do now is to reach my destination, which is the car, put the case in the backseat there, on the floor, like Chuck and me had already figured out, I want to get in the car, start it up and drive away.
Q- Was the car empty when you got there?
A- No sir. When I got to the car, Charles Nicoletti was in the front seat, Johnny Roselli was in the backseat. There’s only two seats in the front (inaudible) the seat center.
Q- As soon as you got in the car, you could start up .?
A- As soon as I got to the car I opened the door, set the case in the back behind the front seat, got right in the car, lit the ignition and gone.
Q- Did anybody say anything at that point?
A- Nobody said nothing to me. At that point we pull out and as we went down the street heading for the intersection, the only thing that was said to me was . Mr. Nicoletti asked me: „Jimmy, don’t you think you overreacted?“ I said „What do you mean?“ He said: „Don’t you think you fired too fast?“ And I told him I was fixing to lose my field of fire, either I shoot then or I put it in my gun case and I leave! I said I had one choice. I said at this point, you told me we were going for a headshot, there had been no headshot. I said I was just following my orders. „I didn’t want to explain to you why I didn’t shoot!“
Q- Did he say anything to that?
A- That was the end of it. He told me at the intersection to make a left and pull over at the gas station. We get down there, he said „We’re getting out, we are getting into another car there.“ And I said OK, I pulled out and parked, they get out of the car. He said: „I’ll see you in Chicago!“ And that was the only thing that was said.
Q- Did you take that as criticism?
A- I took it as criticism. Naturally!
Q- Did he criticize you very often?
A- No. The only thing he asked me if I thought I overreacted.
Q- You told him “No!” and he accepted?
A- He accepted it.
Q- The shell casing – Go back there to the point after you fired the round and tell us about ejecting the shell. Start with, “ After the headshot…”
A- Okay. The motorcade is coming down, I’ve got my target in the scope, my primary target is lined up and I am waiting. And like I said, we’re going for a headshot. I don’t want to fire unless I have to. At this point I am fixing to lose my field of fire. I took my shot. When I took my shot and I knelt back down at the briefcase, I injected the point casing in there, I picked up another live round, put it in and closed the bolt on it. I took this shell casing as it had come out into the briefcase, I put it in my mouth, tasted the sulfur from it – I love the taste of sulfur by the way – closed the briefcase up and as I stood up, I did something that I shouldn’t have done, but I did do it. I took the shell casing and I bit down on it. I took it out and I looked at it and I set it on the stockade fence. And there was an indentation from my teeth on the shell casing, on the ridge by the orifice? and I let it sitting on the stockade fence there. And I walked away.
Q- Why did you do that?
A- Well, you gotta understand: when you’re young and you’re cocky, everything is indestructible to you, you know. Nothing can go wrong. And you gotta be a strong believer in all that, I mean, you know, you’re infallible. And I did that because .. We did a few other jobs and we did some . I might put a quarter on the forehead and we put him in the ground, you know, we might bury him somewhere ..lay a quarter on the head. Two bit gambler. Aah. I might put a nickel and a dime in each eye socket, a nickel in one eye, a dime in the other one. You know . a nickel and dime thief.
Q- You would leave that as a kind of your calling card?
A- Aah, more or less, you might say that. Chuck .., Mr. Nicoletti had laughed at me when I do things like that. (Smiling) I said: „Hey .. We gotta let ‘m know what they got hit for!“ To me it was a symbol. You can say calling card, trait, whatever you wanna do. He used to laugh at me over it and he told me: Jimmy, just do the job, you do it and forget about it!
Q- Would Mr. Nicoletti have been okay with you doing this in Dealey Plaza?
A- Oh, if he would have known I did that in Dealey Plaza, right now he is probably turning over in his grave for me doing something that stupid. But uh .. Mr. Nicoletti criticized me one other time . As a matter of fact, one other time, I won’t get into the details, but we had somebody in the trunk and I stopped and bought a canary, ’cause this guy was a real snitch. And I come out of the dime store, the canary I broke its neck, because I wanted to leave the canary in the guy’s mouth. And he gave me firm instructions: Don’t you ever do anything like that again when we’ve got something in the trunk! You know, it’s highly uncalled for in reality.
Q- Jimmy. I’m pretty sure that you are aware they found two .222 shell casings
A- I’ve heard that!
Q- Have you got any speculation, any idea for a second .222 shell casing?
A- I have no idea whatsoever. I fired one shot, one shot only. I ejected the shell casing. Mine was a Remington cartridge, manufactured prior to 1963, I bit it, I set it on the stockade fence. I had no empty shell casings for a 222 with me at all.
Q- The shell casing by the way, was found not in the exact spot where you left it, but a little bit further at the other side of the fence.
A- Well, I look at it this way: Whoever was searching, somebody looking, anybody could have looked at it, they could have thrown it over there, somebody could have stepped on it. Maybe somebody didn’t want it found! Who knows? They didn’t want to carry anything away from there in case they got stopped. Maybe they just stepped on it and buried it in the ground, I don’t really know. I know where I put it! That’s all I know!
Q- The guns that you brought to Dallas, was the Fireball the only Fireball?
A- No Sir, it wasn’t!
Q- You had another Fireball?
A- No, I only had one Fireball! But I had a couple of rifles in the car. I had a shotgun in the car, I had a couple of other handguns. I brought down probably half a dozen of different weapons.
Q- My impression though is: That was the only .222?
A- That was the .222 round! Like I said, I has a total of six rounds, okay? I got six rounds for the Remington Fireball. I had no empty casings there. The other casings that I brought down with that, I had had six special loads, but the round that I fired were standard rounds and I had no empty casings with me. Those were disposed when I was out there in Mesquite. I didn’t leave them where I test fired them, I picked them up and got rid of them later, make sure they couldn’t be found, because I didn’t want anybody to match anything up to the weapon. But with the Fireball there is no way they’re going to match the ballistics, for the simple reason that the shell fragmentates, but you still got the firing pin that’s going to strike the primer on the end of the shell casing. So . and a lot of times, if you got a weapon where you can match ballistics on, you want to melt the barrel down if you used it on some kind of job like that or whatever, in a local hit or something, also you want to take out the firing pin, because you don’t want that to be discovered either to match up with the primer.
Q- Because they can match?
A- Yes they can.
Q- Do you have any idea about the possibility of other hit-teams in Dealey Plaza that day?
A – I’ve heard different stories about different teams there, different people shooting and this and that. To my knowledge, and to my knowledge only, I never knew of another hit team that was in the area for Kennedy that day. If there was another team there, I have no knowledge of it whatsoever.
Q – But it could be?
A- Anything is possible. Anything is possible, there could have been another team, but what I am stating is this: As far as I know, from what I was involved in: Charles Nicoletti, Johnny Roselli was with him, cause Johnny Roselli was like his look-out, whatever, pick up any shell casings that eject from the rifle, we don’t wanna leave shell casings on the floor, Mr. Nicoletti didn’t want run around behind here „where’s the casing, where’s the casing?“ You’ve got somebody picking them up as they come out. And like I say, I never saw Charles Nicoletti pull the trigger. But he was the shooter from what I understand with him.
Q- You saw Richard Cain there. Could he have been a shooter?
A- Richard Cain. He was on location and so was a guy by the name of Milwaukee Phil. His name is Philip Alderisio. But if they was another hit team, ’cause they faded from the scene, I don’t honestly know. I can’t say yes, I can’t say no.
Q- You think Lee Harvey Oswald fired any shots that day?
A- Lee Harvey Oswald never fired a shot. And if anybody knows what a paraffin test is, and we have actual court documents on where Lee Harvey Oswald was given a paraffin test by the Dallas Police Department, and on this document it plainly states: Deceased: J.D. Tippit. Deceased John F. Kennedy. Suspect: Lee Harvey Oswald. And they took a paraffin test. His face, his hand , his arm, I guess the side of his neck, .. the only trace of any nitrates, from powder burns or powder submissions, was in the palm of his hand. And anybody that goes to a firing range or fire a weapon, knows that if you fire a 38 revolver or any type of revolver, the blow-back is coming by this part of your hand (pointing at top of hand) and your wrist. The only reason he had those nitrates in the palm of his hand is because he was holding spent shell casings when I calibrated the scope. There were still traces of that. But Lee Harvey Oswald, like I said, that’s a court document. And I don’t believe anybody rigged that one up.
Q- Okay, so you left Mr. Nicoletti and Roselli off this gas station where they had a car. Do you remember what type of car it was?
A- I don’t know. I’m not even sure which one it was. There was a car there. I mean, they said they had a car there, but there were several cars there parked up on the side. I did not wait, I did not watch them walk across the lot. They exited the car. When Mr. Nicoletti closed up the door.
Pause in taping
A- Okay, when I pulled out from the intersection, I made a left-hand turn there at the intersection, I went down by the gas station. When I pulled over at the gas station to let them out of the car, I left them out of the Chevy I am in. I’m in a 63 Chevy, burgundy Chevy, we’ll get that fact straight, not a red one or anything, just burgundy, that’s the color of the car. They opened the door as they exited it. As Mr. Nicoletti exited the car, just as he closed the door he said : Jimmy, I’ll see you in Chicago! I told him: Okay Boss! He closed the door, they walked across to go into the parking of the gas station there. There were several cars parked over there. I have no idea, no knowledge which particular car they went to. I did not wait to see, I pulled out, made a right one to get back on the highway. I went back to Mesquite. I went back to my motel. I don’t want to be riding around with a carload of weapons and somebody has just been hit. It would be highly unpractical. I went back to the hotel, pulled in, I parked my car right in front of my room where I could watch it. I get out of the car, I went into my room. When I got into the room, I sat down and relax, got a drink of water, stripped all my clothes off, went in and took me a shower. When I came out of the shower, I took some wax that I brought along for this particular purpose. And if anyone, you have to try it, it can be pretty painful. But I knew I would have residue here and on the side of face, from firing the weapon and across my hand and wrist. I took hot wax and I poured it on myself and let it cool, let I cut into the pores, on the side of my face and after a few minutes I peeled it off, which would remove all the nitrates from any gunpowder. I went back into the shower, I showered again, the shower I finished up with a good cold one because I felt like I was kind of on fire and burning. When I got out of the shower and dried up, I put a lotion on everything to cool the burning sensation and then I got dressed. I waited for dusk to come. Once it got dark, I went out to the car, nobody was around, I made sure everybody was inside whatever they were doing in their motel rooms, I open the trunk up, I took the weapon out of the trunk and when I had gotten out of the car earlier, I had taken the briefcase, the gun case with my Fireball in it, I had already taken that into the hotel. I went inside, I had one weapon I took in, cleaned it, (inaudible) to put it back in the car. I waited until midnight, I went back out to the vehicle, got in and pulled the backseat out, took the top part of the back, put the gun back into the rack, the rifle. I secured my Fireball, put the gun case in there, closed everything back up and went back into the hotel. I went to sleep and got up the next morning at first light. Went down the road, there is a restaurant down the road on the right hand side as you are coming back east. A breakfast and coffee shop, not too far, maybe a mile, a mile and a half down the road, something like that anyway, best I remember. I stopped there, had me some coffee, breakfast, got in the car and I left. I drove back to the southern part of Illinois. When I arrived at the southern part of Illinois, it was starting to get dusk, getting late, I pulled off in a motel there. Aah, as I got back in Illinois, I can’t remember the name of it, I remember it was like a blue and white one. I wanna say „Southern something“ or another. Like a truck stop, a lot of trucks there. I got in, got a room and I stayed overnight there. The next morning I went out, got in the car, proceeded to Chicago.
Q- Are you a drinking man?
A- At that time I was.
Q- Did you have any drinks while you were in Dallas?
A- No, I drank no alcohol while I was working. Mr. Nicoletti would have frowned at that very much if I was down there running around and drinking.
Q- What can you tell me about the death of J.D. Tippit?
A- When it comes to J.D. Tippit, they say that Lee Harvey Oswald was the one that shot him. It’s not true. The party that shot J.D. Tippit was someone else that had been brought in. I’m not sure where he was coming from, I didn’t even know this party was on location. But after that, I am already back at the hotel, when the party comes up, somebody knocks on my door, I picked up my 45, walked to the door, pulled the little curtain back and I kind of looked out the door to see who is there, and I see this party standing there that I recognized, that I know. And I opened the door and I say „What the hell are you doing here?“ He says: „I had to stop by, I got a problem.“ And I say: „You’ve got a problem?“ And I am looking at him, you know, I am still trying to register: How does he even know I’m here? Nobody knows I’m here, you know, this is getting to be a habit, like everybody knows Jimmy is in town. And he said, “I had to burn a cop.” And I said, “Well, done what you had to do.” He said, “I missed Oswald” and I said, “Well what are you doing here? You’ve burned a cop!” He says, “Here, you wanna take this and get rid of it?” “Hell no! That’s yours! You take it and get rid of it! You just shot a cop! I don’t want this weapon. So you get rid of it. That’s yours! Get out of here! Go!”
Q- What are you talking about? The gun?
A- I’m talking about the gun that he had. It was a revolver. And he said, “I had to burn a cop.” I told him, “You did what you had gotta do! I don’t want that thing! Get away from here, get out of here! Go where you got to go!”
Q- Kind of dangerous isn’t it? You are kind of laying low and then this guy comes..
A- Yeah, somebody knocks on my door at this point. I’m ready to start shooting again, you know. And he said Okay and some other things, I don’t remember exactly what it was and he went out into his vehicle and he took off. I don’t even know what he was driving because as soon as he walked out that door I closed the door and pulled the curtain back. I don’t wanna know anybody, I don’t wanna know anything whatsoever at this stage of the game.
Q- You are not naming this party?
A- No, I am not naming this party.
Q- What is the reason for it?
A- What is the reason for it? Well, I don’t know if he is still alive or not, but late in 1991, when I got this case, I know for a fact the party was still alive and in good health, okay? But you know, he didn’t shoot Kennedy, he shot a cop. You know everybody wants a cop killer, okay, but this guy, I don’t know who he is, I mean I know who he is but I’m not going to tell anybody who he is. He is gone! That’s out of there. I have no idea where he is at, I don’t wanna know where he is at.
Q- Give us a statement to the fact, I know that you told Bob Vernon this, and I understand this, that you don’t mind talking about things that happened and people that are dead but that you never give up anybody that might still be alive.
A- Well, when it comes to giving somebody up, I have never given up anybody in my life. I am not gonna put anybody in prison. And as a matter of fact, you probably couldn’t get the FBI to admit to it, but when a couple of their people forced their way into Stateville, I was offered all kinds of deals and all kinds of agreements, if I would not give an interview on John F. Kennedy before. You know, I told them to do what they gotta do. They did, sorry to my regret, but the thing is this: I’m not gonna give anybody up, I’m not gonna put nobody in prison. I have never went to court and testified against anybody. And I have got a lot of deals offered in my time, I have told them to put me in jail. I went to jail, I’ve had cops tell me this and that. You know, “we’re gonna lock you up, we’ve got you dead bang!” I’ve had prosecutors come in and tell me: You’re dead coal! Plead guilty!
Q- If you would hear that this party that killed officer Tippit is dead, would you have no problem revealing his identity?
A- You’re asking me a question right now I can’t answer, ’cause I’m not really sure. Not that it would make any difference probably, if he is dead they couldn’t put him on trial. But what I’m saying is this: I really don’t know how I feel about that, because you know, to me it’s not that relevant, it’s not that important. And as far as I am concerned, I’m not gonna help the FBI or anybody else close their records on a murder case. You know, this is Kennedy we are talking about. You know, to me, I never liked Kennedy, I don’t even know why I ever did it, I don’t even know why the FBI gave Joe West the lead on me. I have never understood that one.
Q- But the Tippit killing is related to the murder of Kennedy.
A- No, the Tippit killing is not related to the murder of Kennedy. If you want to get right down to it. The Tippit killing is related to Oswald. Because Oswald is the one that was supposed to die. Not Tippit. Tippit was just one of those people that stopped the wrong person that got called into the wrong place. And when he got to ask the wrong party something, and you’ve got an officer in Round Lake Beach by the name of David Ostertag, when he goes out and gives his story, as he talks, he tells people how careful they have to be, these young recruits, cause you never know who you’re stopping. Somebody should have given that talk to J.D. Tippit. Because he stopped the wrong party that got him killed.
Q- So the party that killed Tippit though, was actually after .
A- He was after Lee Harvey Oswald.
Q- Okay, make a statement.
A- Okay. The party that killed J.D. Tippit, he wasn’t there to kill J.D. Tippit. He had parked a little ways from Oswald’s boarding house. They went down there to kill Oswald. They wanted to kill Oswald. They didn’t want to make a big spectacle out of it. They wanted to silence him at that point of the game. Before anybody could get to him. But I guess . I don’t know if Lee got spooked or whatever it was, but then he went to theatre. And he knew who he was going to when he left there, because he was supposed to meet the controller there. Which is David Atlee Phillips. He was the one that was supposed to be at the theatre as far as I understand.
Q- How do you know?
A- Because I knew that’s where he was supposed to be. I knew that Lee Harvey Oswald was going to go meet him.
Q- Start over! It was my understanding that he was meeting his handler .
A- It was my understanding that Lee Harvey Oswald when this was over with, that he was going to be in contact with David Atlee Phillips. I did not know that David Phillips was going to be at the theatre, but I knew Oswald was going to go meet him. …. Let me start over again, I’m lost now!
Q- It was my understanding ..
A- My understanding was that Lee, that he was gonna meet his controller, which is David Phillips, who was my controller. He was gonna meet him. I didn’t know it was gonna be at the theatre. I have no knowledge of that at that point. But if Lee Harvey Oswald ran to a theatre, that had to be where the meeting was going to take place. Lee must have left his house earlier or for whatever reason, I don’t really know, but the party that went there, didn’t find Lee there. And when he started to leave, he was stopped by the police. This is when he shot Tippit. What transpired there I can’t tell you, who saw this guy there, I can’t tell you whether he ran, I can’t tell you whether he walked, I don’t know. All I understand is this: A party that I know, that had come by my motel room, told me he had to burn a cop. The cop he burned was J.D. Tippit. That was the only cop killed in Dallas that day, it had to be the one that he burned. At this point he says: „Here, do you want to get rid of that? „ I said: „ Hell no, you take care and get rid of your own weapon! I’ve got my own problems, Get out of here. Go! „
Q- What kind of weapon was it?
A- It was a . I didn’t . I think it was a 38 revolver. I’m not sure, I couldn’t swear that, I didn’t handle it, I didn’t touch it. He just had it in his hand, he pulled it out and handed to me. I said: I don’t want it, take it out of here!.
Q- Well, you know the difference between a revolver and an automatic .
A- Yeah, he had a revolver he was gonna hand me.
Q- How did you know that Lee was supposed to meet his contact?
A- When it comes down to the part that this guy was going for Lee Harvey Oswald, the connection is this: Lee Harvey Oswald had just spent five days with me, Lee Harvey Oswald knew who I was, he knew I was in town, he knew what just happened, he was tied to me basically drastically. When I talked to Charles Nicoletti that morning, I told him this: I said: We’ve got a slight problem. And he asked me: What’s that, Jimmy? I said: Lee Harvey Oswald. At that time Mr. Nicoletti said: „Jimmy, who is Lee Oswald? I never heard of this guy!“ I said he works with the Agency, that he is one of David Atlee Phillips’ people. Chuck didn’t know who David Phillips was. And I told him he is a tie back to me. I am a tie back to you! I said: This makes me nervous. I’m concerned about it! Mr. Nicoletti told me: „Jimmy, don’t worry about it. I’ll talk to the boss.“ The only one he could have talked to is Sam. If he talked to Sam, Sam evidently told him: Don’t worry, I’ll take care of it! The only party that Sam could have called, and that’s Sam Giancana, that would have been David Phillips. David Phillips was in the area that day. I know that for a fact. I didn’t see him, I didn’t talk to him, but I know he was there. Anyway, this party that was there, that killed J.D. Tippit, he was brought in at a last minute notice. He had to be on standby. And where-ever Phillips went, he usually kept several people around that he could use, people that he needed. Whether he needs them or not, they are gonna be available. They always had, what are you gonna call them, contract agents, operatives, co-operatives or whatever, he’s got people that he can use. If he needs something done he can pick up a phone and have it initiated in a moments’ notice. This party was evidently there on standby cause he did not live in that area. That’s why I was shocked to see him at my mote room. So evidently they took care of it that way.
Q- Okay, so this party that shot Tippit, he was more connected to the Agency than the mob?
A- To the agency. He wasn’t tied to the mob. He might have done some work for them along the way, but he was strictly one of David Phillips’ people. Because he did not even know Charles Nicoletti.
Q- Were you aware of anybody using radio communication in the Plaza?
A- No I was not.
Q- Did you ever hear of man named James Hicks, or Jim Hicks?
A- I’ve heard the name but I don’t know him.
Q- Have you ever heard of Chauncey Holt?
A- I have heard of Chauncey Holt.
Q- Did you know him?
A- Aah, when you say know, it’s like knowing somebody, seeing somebody, saying hello or how are you doing? But was we friends? No, we wasn’t friends. I don’t know him that well, I knew who Chauncey was. He was with the same people who I was with, when you get down to the crime family. But to say he was a friend, no. How well did I know him? Slightly. I knew who Chauncey Holt was, I know where he lived at.
Q- You already said you saw Richard Cain in the Plaza.
A- Yes, Richard Cain was in the Plaza.
Q- Is there any chance he was a shooter?
A- There’s all kinds of chances. But like I say, do I know that? No! I can’t say he was or he wasn’t.
Q- Do you think Mr. Nicoletti was aware of the identities of any other shooters, other than you and himself?
A- If Mr. Nicoletti had been aware, he would have been made aware of it by Sam Giancana. And if he was aware of it, he wouldn’t tell me. And if there was other shooters there, I can’t see why anybody would tell Nicoletti.
Q- Sounds to me like you had some from the mob and some from the Agency and they weren’t necessarily talking to each other, but maybe Sam and Phillips would …
A- It very well could be. It’s very possible that Sam Giancana and David Phillips could have been talking. But like I say, again: If I know everybody in that area and I get stopped, I can name every shooter there if there is other shooters there. I’m not saying there is other shooters, what I am saying is this: I have no need to know of everybody that is involved in an operation. What purpose would that serve? That’s like me going into a communist country on a covert operation and me knowing everybody, all the other agents that are there in that field working. And if I get captured, they all get executed! So the same thing goes when it comes down to crime. You try to keep your people the least bit to know as possible. Because too many times, maybe partners, and that’s like . I can use one deal, one party back east out of Philadelphia, I did time with him in the federal prison. His own brother gave him up. His brother knew that he was a big time cocaine dealer, he was a dentist. They called him Dr. Snow. I don’t remember his real name, but they called him Dr. Snow. His brother got busted on a nickel bag of weed in New York. He gave his own brother up because he couldn’t do a year in the jail. His brother told him: I’ll give you a million dollars a year. For every year they keep you in jail, I give you a million dollars cash. Don’t testify against me! He put his brother in jail.
Cut in tape
Q-Why was Antonio Veciana a friend of yours? Do you know Antonio Veciana?
A- Yes I do, I did know Antonio Veciana, yes.
Q- And how did you know him?
A- I met him in Miami. And he was tied up with the JM/Wave and he was also tied up with the Alpha group. He knew all different people. He was I might say a little higher up in the ranks, but I met him. Did you ever meet someone you just like? Well, I liked him and he liked me, we had a good report, he had a good sense of humor, he could talk to you and you know, he didn’t talk down to you.
Q- Tell us about JM/Wave.
A- JM/Wave was a special operation, set up with a lot of broadcasting and we had a lot of people running a lot of covert operations out of there, basically a radio station there, doing a lot of propaganda stuff there. That was all under David Phillips.
Q- And where was that located?
A- That was in Miami.
Q- Where in Miami?
A-Out at Homestead Air Force Base out there
Q- Okay, tell us about David Ferrie.
A- David Ferrie. I won’t get into his personal lifestyle. David Ferrie, I did not like David Ferrie. I had only seen him on one or two occasions. Me, I wanna say he looked like a creep more or less. He was stocky, heavy set, he had real heavy eyebrows and uh, me, I just don’t like a guy who’s homosexual, okay? Child molester as far as I’m concerned. I knew about a lot of things that he was doing and I didn’t approve of it. But I’d like to say one thing about David Ferrie. He was a solid agent for the CIA. He was on their payroll. I don’t care what anybody says.
Q – What, about Ferrie’s death? Do you know anything about David Ferrie’s death?
A- Yes I do. He had a cerebral brain hemorrhage. But the cerebral brain hemorrhage that David Ferrie had, that was brought on. And uh.. I explained to the coroner, and I had this checked out , he went and talked to them, I don’t know who else they talked to and anything else. But I also know that when warden Godinez was the warden here at Stateville prison , it was on a Sunday morning, they made a call up here and wanted to come here and talk to me, some people, I’m not sure as to who it was that wanted to come here and talk to me. They said they had a Lear-jet on standby. And my reply was „Save your fuel, I got nothing to say to you!“
But the tissue tear and the brain itself is just above the palate of the mouth .The hemorrhage was inflicted!
Q– Ice pick?
A- No, nail file. A nail file gives you the simulation of a tear. You could use a stiletto, thin blade knife, ice pick, but then you would see what it is. You get a clean cut. With a fingernail file you got a smooth edge, you’ve got a perforated edge. And when it goes through the tissue, it’s like a tear, it’s like something ripping apart.
Q- Do you know who did that?
A- Yes I do.
A- Was it you?
A- Was it me? Of course not . Not me, I wouldn’t do that. I’m not admitting to a murder on tape! JFK is bad enough , but nobody is going to prosecute me for JFK. Who killed David Ferrie, I’m not saying.
Q- But you know ..?
A- I know who it was , yeah.
Q- Okay, all right. Here’s a question I want to tell you. John Roselli was actually pretty well known, and he was well connected in Hollywood, he was kind of flashy dressing .
A- Very flashy; very flashy, very loud. Liked to spend money. And liked for everybody to know basically what he was doing when he was in town. He wanted everybody to know he was there.
Q- Why would the mob put somebody like that in such an important hit as JFK.
A- Johnny Roselli had all the right connections. The reason that Johnny Roselli was brought into all this: He had the right connections, he was the liaison I can say between the government and the crime …. you know the crime people, mafia, what are you gonna call them, Outfit, the organization, crime family, they’ve got different names for it. They brought him on, not for what he was, and I think Chuck wanted to use him more or less, specifically because of the connections and the cooperation and the help that we would receive. This is only what I say. This is not fact, I got no document and proof on it. Nobody never sat me down and told me that, this is where I draw my own conclusions.
Q- So he could kind of provide you with some high level contacts?
A- Right, high level cover from Johnny Roselli’s side. And at this point of the game, when I went down there, I did not know at that time that the CIA was heavily involved in this. After I talked to David Phillips, and let him know where I am at, and then when Lee Harvey Oswald shows up on the scene, I have at this point become aware. Only two people knew where I was: Charles Nicoletti and David Ferrie .. uh David Phillips, excuse me.
Q- Start over.
A- Okay, at this point of the game only two people know where I am at: Charles Nicoletti and David Phillips. Lee Harvey Oswald showed up at my hotel. This tells me automatically: David Phillips is in on it, David Phillips knows what’s going down. Otherwise Oswald would never be there.
Q- So Oswald was working for the agency is what you are saying?
A- Oswald was CIA, oh, Oswald was CIA before I ever knew any of these people. Oswald was recruited when he was in the Marine Corps.
Q- Was it obvious to you that Lee Harvey Oswald knew David Atlee Phillips under his real name? Or could it have been one of his aliases?
A- Lee Harvey Oswald knew David Phillips by several names. He knew his real name, he knew him by different aliases, he knew him by different codenames. Lee Harvey Oswald had known David Phillips a lot longer than I had.
Q- Phillips had several aliases?
A-David Phillips, he uses a lot of aliases. One of his most famous one, one of them that I can remember is Maurice Bishop. And Maurice Bishop had a lot of controversy whether it was him or whether it wasn’t him, he’s had other names but I can’t even remember all the different names, I can’t even remember all the names I’ve had on my different passports with my picture on it or different pictures and everything, you know.
Q- What is your real name?
A- My real name is James Sutton.
A- And you were born when?
A- I was born January 24th, 1942, in Alabama. And if you find my birth certificate it will plainly state, “deceased at birth.”
Q- How then was that arranged?
A- I have no idea. But when I was trying to get a birth certificate for my own records, they could not locate one at first. And the logger in Alabama went to do everything, went to the capital and when he got through, he found it 3 months later. I had a birth certificate in there that says, “deceased at birth.”
Q- Now can the mob do something like that or is that the government?
A- That is only the government! The mob knows a lot of things, they’ve got ways to get things done, but when it comes to this kind of stuff, that’s out of their category. I wanna tell that when it comes to the government and underhanded work , the mob, they are kindergarten. They are kindergarten! I might upset a lot of people in the family saying that, but they are kindergarten when it comes to working with the government. They are the goldfish in the shark’s pond.
Q- What kind of a man was David Atlee Phillips?
A- David Atlee Phillips was a very secure man, lot of class, quiet. He was dominating, he demanded like attention when he was with you. When he was around he had a presence around him on his own. He was like he was in command. He was somebody like when he says something, you listen.
Q- And what kind of a man was Charles Nicoletti?
A- Charles Nicoletti , very quiet, well defined, I only heard Mr. Nicoletti swear on a few occasions, he did not use a lot of profanity like they portrayed him in Double Cross. Charles Nicoletti mostly got upset when there was FBI involved. And there were several other times that that happened, but like I say, Nicoletti was a quiet type of person. He didn’t go out and talk about anything that he had done. He didn’t go out and get drunk, I never saw the man drunk. He might take a sociable drink here and there, but he was not a man that used profanity.
Q- You just told us, “Fuck ‘em , we go!”
A- Yes, he said that, that was one of the times.
Q- That was one of the times, when he said, “Oh Fuck ‘em, we ‘re going!”
A- Oh, that was one of the times. Definitely! When they called it off! Another time that I remember, was in Melrose Park. We had the car on the grease rack of the Shell station there. It used to be on Broadway and Division. And uh, there was a car parked out front. I told him: „Chuck”, I said „Mr. Nicoletti, I don’t know who it is over there, but it looks we might have a problem!“ And he said „Ah, I don’t know, we’ll watch them for a few minutes!“ So they went in and they serviced this car. And they kept sitting out there and they peeked a little way down from the station’s lane. That would be on the east side of the street cause Broadway runs north and south, Division runs east and west. And at that time,.. The shell station sits on the northwest corner, yeah, on the northwest corner, . on the northeast corner was the Gulf Gas station. And they were parked just beyond that in front of a two-flat down there. They kept staring and they kept watching us. So Chuck says, “I gotta see who they are! Jimmy”, he says, „cover me!” So I told the kid doing the grease job on the car: „Lower the car a minute!.“ And they lowered it, I walked around back and the overhead door, I had them pull that down so they couldn’t see what we were doing in there, I opened the trunk and I took a rifle out. I got that out, they raised the car back up in the air and I went over by one of the . (inaudible) . and I went out the back way. Then I crawled up on the roof and I get up behind the Shell sign. And I had told Chuck: „Give me two minutes and then go!” He walked out, he walked across the parking lot, he was well guested, he had kinda like his right hand down into his little watch pocket where he carried a small caliber weapon there. And I got the guy, the driver, zeroed up. Anybody who picks up a gun, he’s gonna get it. He got to the middle of Broadway and the car pulled out and took off. So we don’t know who it was. But the only thing he said inside when we had started to go, when I had started getting the gun out, he said: It’s gotta be the fucking Feds! And that was just one of those times he was very upset, because they used to really paranoid him.
Q- Did Wolfman. the mercury loads he made, did he have any idea what they were going to be used for?
A- On Wolfman, when I asked him to make the special rounds, the only thing he ever asked me was: „Do you need any help?” He never asked me what I was doing, because he would never breach that borderline, whatever you wanna call it there. In the trade you just don’t ask people what they are going out to do. But when I told him what I wanted done and what I needed made, he told me he would do it, and the only thing he would say, he kinda grinned at me and said , “Need any help?” And I said, “No, this is straight.” And he said, “Okay.”
Q- So he really didn’t know?
A- He said, “See me in a couple of days.”
Q- You ever heard. Have you ever heard the story of Ed Hoffman?
A- Yes, I’ve heard of him. I don’t know who he is, but I’ve heard of him.
Q- He is the deaf guy who was up on Stemmons and he says he saw a guy essentially in your position, but he saw him toss a rifle to somebody else. Have you got any idea?
A- I never tossed anything to anybody. Never.
Q- How did you guys know the bubble top was off?
A- Well, when Kennedy would come down to Dallas, we had one concern. We feared the limo might have a bubble top, because it never went anywhere without it. And if it was raining, the only thing is, if we would be told in advance that the top is on, it’s a walk-away. You know, you abort it, you leave it. We would pick another place, we would try it again. And that would have probably fallen to someone else. But this question had been asked us: How you’re gonna get through the top? Me, my answer was using some pretty heavy artillery like using uh… one of the old uh…what do you call these things, I’ve got the name on the tip of my tongue .
Q- Armored piercing?
A- No not armored piercing! One of the rounds knocking out tanks .. bazookas. Today we got a lot of those rockets. But we didn’t have those rockets to run around with back then, that’s something new that has come down the pike. But anyway, they said: No, we do it sensible. But the thing was, they had been instructed they would go and work on his ego. They tried to make Kennedy believe he shouldn’t go to Texas. That he should be afraid of Texas! And they worked on his ego: You’ve got to use the bubble top, you have to have the top on, you can’t sit in an open car! You’ve got to, uh , whatever they think you’ve got to let them think, you’re afraid of whatever, but there’s a high risk here. Gotta have the top on. The more they worked on Kennedy about this, the more he wanted the top off. Kennedy wanted to prove: I’m not scared of anything, I want the top off, I want to wave the people, I want to see the people, I want to touch the people. So they played on his ego. The top was off.
Q- Were you aware that David Ferrie was involved, among many other things, in cancer research?
A- I did not know David Ferrie was involved in cancer research, no, I did not.
Q- Okay, so have you got any thoughts about Jack Ruby’s cancer? Do you think that was natural or unnatural?
A- No, I’m going to say it was injected. There’s one thing I’d want to say, when you talk about David Ferrie, as far as cancer research, I have no knowledge of that at all, but I do know he liked to play around with hypnosis. I think he used it on a lot of young kids. Because he was in charge of the Civil Air Patrol.
Q- Yes, for a second back to that bubble top: What would you have done if it would be on?
A- Well, back to the bubble top on the car, if they would have had the top on, it was a walk-away. But we would have known that before he ever got to the Plaza, because we would have been informed. If they had come out and had picked him up with the top on, they are not going to remove the top during the motorcade. Nobody would have been there, none of us would have been on hand to watch John F Kennedy come down theatre, but I couldn’t care less about seeing the man. But if the top would have been on, I would already be on my way back to Mesquite and I am quite certain that Mr. Nicoletti and Roselli would have been on their way somewhere else.
Q- So if it would have rained, it was a no go?
A- If it would still have been raining, it was a no go. But if you plan something, all you can do, is hope for the best. It’s like a football, you know, you gotta make the play, seconds are running out, you go for the long one. If it works, it works. If it don’t, it don’t, you walk away.
Q- So there was no plan B?
A- Pardon me?
Q – No backup?
A- There was no backup plan for that. The only backup plan that we had for when the top was on is it’s a no go.
The following questions are from Pamela Ray that she had Jim Marrs bring in on a piece of paper to make sure and ask James Files during the interview.
Q- Here’s some questions Pam had for you. What has changed in your life in recent years?
A- Uh . I think probably the biggest change in my life is .. and let me go back just a little bit farther . before this change took place, I had no emotions, no feelings, basically speaking for anyone at all. My family never came first . The agency came first, crime family came first. Everybody was always ahead of my wife and my kids. Wrong ! I know that .. I know that know. I’ve got probably a lot of regrets, maybe some remorse for a lot of the things that I did do. I’m sorry at times I wasn’t there, to see my kids go to their little school plays and do their dances, recitals or whatever. I’m sorry I wasn’t there at their birthdays and a lot of their Christmases. But those things were part of my life and things that I accepted. Because to me other things were more important. My family, my wife, my kids, they were way down the list of priorities. Wrong, I know! After I got here. and when I got here, this place was pretty well wide open. This place was very violent, wild, and you know we’ve had recently several lockdowns due to deaths here, that weren’t natural. But a few years ago, what happened to me was: I went to sleep one night. I had a lot of hate in me , I had a lot of anger in me. I had a list of names, I wanted to start writing names, why I wanted this person, and I wanted that person. A lot of hate in me. But I woke up there in the night, I find Jesus sitting by my bunk. A lot of people will say that was just a dream. Maybe it was a dream ! It’s a dream to you, a dream to him. To me it’s real! And I asked him: „What are you doing here?” And he said: „I’ve come to take you! There’s only one way. The Father sent me to tell you.” He said that „I’m for real , God is for real” and that I am for real. The only way to the Father is through me.” So we talked for a little while and I went back to sleep. The next morning I woke up: All the hate was gone. I used to wake up and come out of my cell every morning. It’s not, “What am I gonna do today?” It’s „Who am I going to kill today?“ or „Who am I going to have to stab today?“ Or „Who is going to try and stab me? Who am I going to fight?“ You know, because there are a lot fights here, a lot of stabbings. But I had a new feeling in me. It was really like, you know, I felt I loved everybody! You know „Hey, how are you doing?” Boom! I talked to people I never talked to. I even talked to the guards. „Hey, how ‘re you doing? What’s going on? Hey, Hey, nice day!” Well, after a little while I started slipping back again. I got back to being the old Jimmy again. I started getting these other, these angry feelings back. I wanted to fight, you know you look every wrong way, I’m gonna grab you, slam you against the wall, you know. „Whatever you do!” Ah . I got a second visit. And when I got this second visit, Jesus really got, really got my attention. And at this point … , I had already heard from this one girl, this one lady, I don’t know whether I should name her on tape or not, but I had become romantically involved with her. I fell in love with her. And I love her with all my heart. I love her more than I have ever loved anything in my life. And we were talking and writing, she was a good Christian lady, and she had told me a few different things, and on the second visit I got, Jesus told me to get my life in order, and that the Father was going to call me home. And I thought, “Well, Jesus, I’m gonna die.” And I’m gonna die right away!” And so I told her that on the phone, and she was crying a little bit, you know, she was a little sad over this and that. But then I was reading in the Bible and I was reading In Matthew, chapter 24, about the earth giving the birth pain and all this. What he was telling me , Jesus was telling me: God is not calling me home at this stage of the game, but be prepared : „You’re ready for heaven”, so I can have a life hereafter. And I’m reading all about this in Matthew. And then it struck on me what it was. But like I say, since then I have lived a whole different life here. I used a few words profanity in this interview, strictly for the purpose of what was said, they were actual words used verbatim. But when I am not, like not in this interview, I try not to use vulgar language, I try not to hate people, I try to maintain good thoughts. But in here it’s hard to maintain good thoughts. Very hard in here, but I work at it very hard. And I pray every night, every day. I don’t run around with my bible, I don’t run around trying to tell you all about the word of God. That’s not my job. You want to hear about it, I’ll be more than happy to sit down and talk to you about it. But I don’t try to push it on anybody. We have a lot of different kinds of religions here.
Q- Why don’t you briefly tell why you are in prison right now?
A- I am in prison for a specific reason. When I came out of the federal prison, I did a federal stretch and I was out for a little while and people started trying to kill me. When they started trying to kill me, the first time I was at Quentin road and Rollins, at Round Lake Beach, shortly past midnight, driving a little Chevy Chevette. And the cops had been harassing me , they knew who I was. Every time they see me, they handcuffed me, get me out of the car, my papers, blew out my stuff all down the street. Well, in this particular night, I had pulled up the stoplight there, I am on Quentin road, fixed to make a right hand turn on Rollins road. I’m staying on my end … [inaudible] … this time about two blocks down from there. I looked up in the rearview mirror and I see this car pulling up behind me with no lights, next lane. And I thought: „Shit, cops again!” You know, I ‘m going to get hassled again. It’s not a squad car, but I figured it’s just detectives, you know. As it pulls up alongside of me, I’m looking in the mirror sitting by the door, the little door there on my side, and I see an SMG coming up. For anybody who doesn’t know what that is, it’s a small machine gun, an automatic weapon, and as I see it coming out of the window, I roll across the seat, hit the door , hit the ground, roll back up against the (inaudible) of the car. They put 30 holes in my car! Four clips they put into it. As they were pulling away, I come up off the ground on my feet , so I got off about four rounds. I’m on federal parole at that point, I’m not supposed to be carrying a weapon, but you never find me without a weapon. I got off four rounds, took the back window out, they kept going. I jumped back in my car, took a right onto Rollins road, went down to Grove Avenue, pulled into the house at (inaudible) 1620 Grove, went in there and got the tarp from my uncle out of the garage and put it over the car, so they couldn’t see the bullet holes. That was the first attempt on my life.
Q- When was that?
A- Aah. I got out of federal prison in ’88 .This year was late ’89 or early 90 I guess.
Q- Has there been any attempt on your life in prison?
A- Not in prison. I had a lot of fights, but that’s not attempts on my life. I mean the things that happen here is just day-to-day living . I got a few scars from knives here and there, but that’s irrelevant there.
Q- You don’t think it was people trying to take you out?
A- Oh no, definitely not.
Q- Well then, it doesn’t have anything to do with the JFK job?
A- No, definitely not. And when they started trying to kill me on the street, after the first attempt on my life in the free world, as I call it: Next day I went to see somebody down in the city and I wanted to ask him a specific question: If we had a problem? I said: „I did my federal time. I got busted on the chop shops. I didn’t take nobody down with me.” I said: „I went and kept my mouth shut, I didn’t testify, I didn’t give nobody up. I took the conviction, I have done my time. What is the problem? We got a problem? Let me know!” And he told me: „Jimmy” – he always called me Jimmy – „Jimmy boy”, he says: „Calm down, calm down!” He says: „Listen to me”, he said: „You got no problem with us! You did your things.” He says, “Hey, you didn’t have no problems when you got down, you got money, we looked after certain people for you, took care of your family, you had no problems.” When you came out , you went to the restaurant, everybody parked, everybody came by to see you. We dropped a lot of envelopes.” He said: „You have money when you come out. Everybody looked after you when you came out! That’s respect! Don’t think we are after you! Whatever you’ve done, that’s with your previous employers, not us! That’s only the other side of the fence with people you worked for before.” He said: „No, not us, Jimmy, I’ll give you my word on that!”
The second attempt I was on my motorcycle and it’s a long story and I won’t go with you all through that …
Q- Hold a minute, so you are saying that attempt was not the mob, that it was the Agency?
A- That was the Agency, that was the government, somebody in the government.
Q- So the government has tried to take you out ?
A- That’s what I honestly believe.
Q- Okay, make a statement.
A- Now then, the second time on my attempt . or are you talking about making a statement on the government?
A- After I talked to a certain party in Chicago down there in the city, about them trying to kill me, he was telling me that was my previous employers. What we’re talking about here, is we’re talking about a government agency. I won’t say which agency it was trying to take me out, but at the time I had people with the DOD on me. because I had taken certain material off the computer at Oxford, from the arsenals that I worked, I had an access to classified materials there for building new tanks, new helicopters, everything (inaudible) with black hawk helicopters. I had the keys for everything, I had the range of firing, everything was classified because we made a lot of the stuff there. We made the nitrate cable to fire the sidewinder missile, inside the federal prison.
Anyway, the second attempt, was .. – now I realize this is not the crime family that is after me, it has to be a government agency – the second attempt on my life was late at night, they ran me over on my motorcycle. They hit me so hard, they bent the frame on it. They towed the motorcycle out. That’s all on record.
Next time that comes around, the third time, were these two off-duty officers. One of them is David Ostertag. They will never admit they had a contract on my life . and I want to state here: I have no hard feelings against either one of these officers, even though they tried to kill me. I don’t take this as anything personal. I think that they were doing a job. They were doing what they were paid to do. They just blew it! But the thing is this: I’m here because somebody opened up on my partner and me, they tried to kill us in broad daylight on May 7th, 1991, 3:15 PM, maybe 3:30, at the middle of route 12 in a little place called Buffalo Grove. We were between Quentin road and Long Grove road on route 12. They forced us off the road, when they forced us off the road – they say it was a high speed chase, it really wasn’t a high speed chase – they spotted me at a gas station, I didn’t even see them, I paid for the gas, got in the car with my partner David Morley, he was driving. And we pulled out from there, they got in behind us. As they got up alongside, he started hitting the gas to go and I told him: „No hold on! Pull over, we don’t run from nobody!” My exact words were: Fuck ‘m, we don’t run! Pull it over! We’ll deal with it!” As they cut us off, it’s like he pulled into what was part of a driveway, it was gravel, a little fast, he hit the brakes and he littered a low tree. The tree we hit, wasn’t any bigger than my arm. I threw the door open on my right hand side, to exit the car, this was a leased car, and after I opened the door to exit, they drove their car, which is a white unmarked car, into the side of our car. While I see the front of their car coming at the door, I jerked my leg back above the ground so I wouldn’t get it cut off there and broken, and duck my head. And then they hit the door, the door hit me and knocked me back into the car and I bounced off the dash. And at that point, they opened fire. My partner David Morley, very good man, he saved my life on several occasions in the free world, his left hand is paralyzed, he has been shot a couple of times in shootouts. He can’t use his left hand. At this point he’s leaning down, fumbling under the seat of the car looking for his gun. Looking for a 9 mm. And I’m yelling: „Get out! Get out! Get out!” And to me it seems like it’s taking forever. When he got the 9, he put it up under his arm, he’s gotta close that arm, he reached across, to open the door to exit. Well, this is only a few seconds, but it seems like a lifetime to me. And we come out of the car and when he comes out, he took the first shot: David Ostertag went down. At this point I come out, there’s no need for me to even shoot. The other officer, Bitler – and I didn’t know they were cops at that time, neither did my partner, we had no idea they were police officers – he crawled up under the car. And he was screaming, I guess they’re gonna kill us both! They’re gonna kill us both!” David Ostertag was already down. I grabbed the AK-47 out of the car that I had in the backseat. I had one picked out from the storage shed for a simple reason: I had a meeting prior to those people and somebody had poked me in the chest, and I just knocked him down and stumped on him a couple of times, and told him: „Don’t ever threaten me to tell me you’re gonna trunk me! If you do, do it first and then come and tell me that you’ve done it!” I went to tell Dave. “We got problems.” I want to get the AK-47 out, got the ammo-can out; I had a 30-round clip in the AK-47, this is all in the logbooks, the ammo-can had 500 rounds of ammo in it. David Ostertag can tell you how many rounds we had for the 9 mm, the clips and all the loose rounds.
I went into a little swamp, it took them several hours to get me out. The AK-47, the tracker spring broke, it wouldn’t fire.
Q- Any witnesses to all this?
A- A lot of people around. A lot of people. We had traffic backed up from the shooting incident there all the way to Wisconsin and all the way to the city of Chicago.
Q- So who opened fire first?
A- They opened fire first!
Q- And they were in an unmarked car?
Q- Plain clothes?
A- Plain clothes. They had a windbreaker on, they were wearing a badge under their gun belt underneath the windbreaker jackets, sitting in the car. They were shooting from inside the car. David Ostertag had exited and was coming around and shooting when David Morley dropped him.
Q- Did they ever say you were under arrest or..?
Q- Did they identify themselves, did they yell: „Police officer!” ?
A- Nobody identified nothing. I mean: The shooting started.
Q- How many shots were fired before your partner took the shot?
A- Well I’m gonna say they got off probably the first 14 shots. They say they fired 3 and 11 out of 52. They said we fired the rest of them. But there’s not that many shell casings on hand. And if the only weapons that were fired, were 9 mm’s that day, and my weapon hadn’t been fired, that leaves 3 clips. It’s only 45 rounds. There’s 15 rounds to a 9 mm in a staggered clip. And they didn’t fire that many, they still had rounds in theirs. So there’s no way that 52 rounds were fired that day.
Q- Are there witness reports on record?
A- Oh, there’s all kinds witnesses that have seen what went down. There’s witnesses that plainly state as to who got out, who shot who, and who shot first. That’s all in the court documents.
Q- So how did they get a conviction if there are witnesses to say they fired first?
A- That was very simple: We were tried in Lake County, Illinois. It didn’t take them long to convict us. Everybody on the jury was related to a cop. You don’t shoot a cop and walk away. If you shoot a cop, it don’t matter whether it was self-defense or not.
Q- Were these witness reports allowed .. as evidence?
A- Some of those were denied. I had witnesses that had come here to testify on my behalf and that was irrelevant and they were not permitted to testify. My own aunt was not permitted to testify at my trial.
Q- So this was a frame-up?
A- As far as I’m concerned, it was a frame-up. It was self-defense. Over and out. And I didn’t even shoot nobody.
Q- All right, let’s go back and tell us a little bit about your military background and when and how you were recruited into the CIA.
A- I went into the military in January 1959. Regular army. I went into Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, took my basic there. From there I went to Fort Polk. AIT training there, went to Bragg, Airborne, ..and Laos. And Laos, I got in trouble over there, well – not really trouble, we had some problems, I executed two of my own men. I was court martialed, I wrote my own court martial, I wrote the report, they got me court martialed, I didn’t write the court martial itself, but the report I wrote was a result of it. And they knew that I was right, every JCS knew that I was right and I went for a ninety-days evaluation and I was recruited out of the Veteran’s hospital. And there have been claim numbers located on that. Some say they are not mine, but they were. But anyway, to make long story short, David Phillips recruited me, due to a word of William Shackley. William Theodore Shackley. Ted Shackley, as he is known as.
Q- So, did Phillips recruit you or did Shackley recruit you?
A- Shackley recommended me. Phillips is the one that recruited me. He had come to see me and told me he had a job waiting for me. I walked out of the Veteran’s hospital.
Q- Where was that?
A- That was there in Maywood, Illinois.
Q- Who was the director at that time?
A- I don’t even remember that far back. I don’t remember if Dulles was still there or if he was already out or not. I am not . I don’t remember. At that time I knew virtually nothing about the CIA to speak of. I only knew it existed.
Q- Did you go through any training?
A- What they wanted me for, I had already been through all my training, advanced training to go to Laos. I had already been to Laos and back again, and he wanted me to work and train some of the Cubans.
Q- Are you a pilot?
A- I can fly, yes.
Q- Did you ever get a pilot license?
A- I had a pilot’s license at one time, yes.
Q- Who did you fly for?
A- I flew basically for myself. Now if you want to ask me who was paying me, the agency was paying me. I did a lot of things, I flew a lot of planes but we uh … , I didn’t have no company name or nothing, I just had a plane and went up, a lot of that was considered to go back through Southern Air Transport , what we call SAT.
Q- CIA front?
A- Yeah, CIA priority company, yeah.
Q- What about the DEA? Ever worked for them?
A- Never worked for DEA.. I had a chance at one time and I turned it down. That’s when . what they call the Halloween Massacre. I believe it was . and I’m going to say it was Bobby Ray Edmund that fired like 3000 contract agents at one time.
Q- That was back in the seventies?
A- Yeah, and at that time they were forming the DEA and they wanted a lot of people to go work for the DEA, because they had operations in that parts of the country down there, Central America and around. And they needed people that knew the area and I was approached and I was asked if I would be willing to join that force and I told them: „No, I will not! I’m not going to work for anybody where you (inaudible) arrest people.”
Q- How long do you figure the government, CIA, FBI, as official agencies, has known about your participation in the JFK assassination?
A- Well, I didn’t know it at the time, but I’ve learned and I’ve seen that, I’ve even been given the name of it, that the party that was the informant, and he was the tie-in between both the CIA and the FBI, and he was the one …- and how he knew I was in Dealey Plaza, I don’t know – but he told the FBI that I was in Dealey Plaza and that I was one of the shooters.
Q- When did that happen?
A- He told them that as early as in 1964.
Q- And nothing was done about it?
A- I never even knew that anybody knew about it. Until I’ve seen some of the documents here, a couple of years back
Q- Is it true that during the Clinton administration that you were presented as a threat to national security?
A- That was in 1998. The historian of the 82nd Airborne, he was doing a lot of research on me, his name was John Grady. He recently passed away, which I’m sorry to say, he was a very nice man. He also was a good veteran , he served in World War II. He did a lot of research on me and checked through a lot of people, found out for me to be credible, he verified a lot of things that him and I discussed. He had come here to visit me and when him and I were corresponding, he was approached by the Secret Service. And they warned him that I was a threat to national security. And in 1998, I don’t remember what month it was, but Janet Reno and President Bill Clinton at that time, declared me as a threat to national security. And it was basically for training manuals and formulas and information they had retrieved out of one of my storage sheds, when they raided it.
Q- Today with Homeland Security they probably had declared you as a terrorist threat, because you know how to make bombs!
A- That could be. I know there is a US Marshall retainer on me at this time.
Q- US Marshall for what?
A- There is a US Marshall retainer on me at this time.
Q- What does that mean?
A- That means the day I walk out here, the US Marshals will be here to pick me up. They want to talk to me. There are no outstanding charges, there are no charges against me. What they have against me is a retainer. All they want to do is talk to me. What they want to know is they want to be notified when I leave here, in other words.
Q- Why did John Grady research your past?
A- He was hired by .. I believe it was either Joe West or Bob Vernon, I’m not sure which one recruited him or who hired him or who paid him. All I know is that he was a historian for the 82nd Airborne and he had been hired to do a research on me. And he started researching me and after he did a lot research, he contacted me for more information and he came here to Stateville prison to visit me from Florida. We visited, we talked, I gave him dates, information and things and he verified a lot of it.
Q- Why was this necessary? Were your records missing?
A- When it gets down to my records, nobody had ever heard of me. It took Mr. Grady, I believe it was, don’t hold me to this, but I wanna say roughly 18 months, to find any military trace of me and he found them in the archives in St. Louis, Missouri. Once those records had been discovered and he found them, he got down claim numbers, serial numbers, etcetera, etcetera. A few months later they went back to retrieve some more information from those records, and the records were missing and there was a thing there that said: „No more information is available“.
Q- Do you know the term sheep dipping?
A- Yes I do.
Q- Explain that and make a statement whether it is a very common practice.
A- Sheep dipping is a very common practice. What sheep dipping is, that’s the old term for it, back when I was first in. Like when we went to Laos. There was no Americans going over there. I mean, let’s face it, no Americans went to South East Asia until like ’62 or ’63. But what a lot of people don’t realize, South East Asia is the old Indo China. We were there during World War II. We never came out of there. And as the old saying goes: India, Alpha, Charlie, .. no, Charlie, India, Alpha went up into the northern part of Indo China and never came out. They went up there for the drug trade. The opium trade, the heroine, because that’s the Golden Triangle. That’s where, going way ahead in years, that’s where the golden . the body bags, the stuff coming out of Vietnam was all that, stashed onto human bodies coming out of the corpses.
Q- So you have personal knowledge about the drug smuggling by the Agency?
A- Oh I’ve got a lot of knowledge on that, but the thing is, back to the sheep dipping, you go in and you are sterile. You aren’t wearing no dog tags, you are not registered to any country, to anybody. If you are caught or retrieved, you are sterile. What sterile means, is there are no ties back to anybody. You’ve got no trading validity. So what they do to a mercenary, they stand him up and they shoot him, he is executed. And you can’t say you work for anybody, because they are not going to believe you anyway, because you can’t prove it. So when you go sheep-dip, when you go sterile, you’re on your own. In other words your ass is hanging out there on a limb. Be careful that it doesn’t get chopped off.
Q- And that’s a common practice?
A- Common practice. Still practiced, still used today.
Q- Aah. What level do you think the decision was made to hit Kennedy?
A- I would say that that decision was made higher up. Way high up.
Q- Higher than Sam Giancana?
A- Oh, way higher!
Q- Higher than LBJ?
A- I would say much higher than LBJ. LBJ was fixing to go to prison. A lot of people may not realize that. But he was in a lot of trouble. J. Edgar Hoover, he was in a lot of trouble. That’s a different ballgame right there, but they relished by his death. But J. Edgar Hoover had knowledge of Kennedy’s assassination six months in advance. And that’s documented records from the National Security Agency, because they forwarded the information to him. Because they picked it up on their link out of Scotland.
Q- Are you aware of JFK’s attempt to issue interest-free money?
A- Ah, I didn’t know that until very recently. Very recently I just read book „Rule by Secrecy“ by Jim Marrs, and that’s the first time I ever heard that John F. Kennedy had authorized money to be printed. I always thought it was by the Federal Reserve. But I have to say that I have never read much in that field. I have never cared for J.F. Kennedy, I have never read about him, I know very little about John F. Kennedy.
Q- Are you remorseful? About shooting Kennedy?
A- For many years, no, I wasn’t. But as the time goes by, I’m not saying remorseful for shooting Kennedy, maybe I am more remorseful for how it has affected this country and for the things that have been done. Maybe John F. Kennedy did do some good things for this country. I’m not really sure, but I’ve got a lot of remorse for a lot of things I have done, but that’s for the simple reason I got my life turned around a little bit. So I can’t be as hard as I used to be. I try to have a lot of compassion for my fellow man. But with John F. Kennedy? I’ve gotta be honest: .. Yeah , let’s say I have a little remorse for him, not specifically for him, but for the family and the kids and all. But at the time when we acted, I felt that I was right in what we were doing.
Q- Why? .. Why did you dislike the man?
A- I disliked Kennedy .., for a reason you gotta understand. I didn’t like Kennedy for one reason. I didn’t know the man personally, never met the man, never seen him in person as far as I know. The whole thing was: I was heavily involved in training for the Bay of Pigs. I didn’t go with them, I wasn’t on their shoulder, I wasn’t a soldier, I didn’t go there and fight, I never fired a shot. I trained them, setting up. Demolitions, making bombs, weapons ambushes, we call ‘m MA’s mechanical ambushes, firing weapons, train them in weapon’s trade, and some hand-to-hand combat. What I did was not all that important, but you get to know guys. You work with them all day. You’re out there at the fire at night. You sleep out there in the (inaudible). You know, you live together for a while. They get trained, they go away. If I had my choice I would have gone with them. Luckily I didn’t. But when they went there and they got slaughtered, got arrested and put in prison all their lives, tortured . , it was a mess. All because Kennedy – and we had all kinds of firing power sitting out there waiting – we (inaudible), they (inaudible) them bad. Kennedy wouldn’t do it, he got scared, he wouldn’t go for it. When I say Kennedy got scared, he was scared of Krushauv, Russia then. But the whole thing was this: That’s one of those things: They called it off, it was a no-go. They had no support, they went in, they got their ass shot off.
Q- So you felt like Kennedy had betrayed?
A- Oh, Kennedy betrayed, I felt like he really betrayed me. He didn’t know who I was, but he betrayed the operation itself. And this was a government sanctioned operation without a doubt. And then later I found out that a lot of people that we trained that were supposed to have been there, they were put on. ah, I wanna call it banana boat, like a freighter. And these people, they were trucked around several hundred miles on this freighter. And they are giving them like a five-eight joy ride around the Gulf of Mexico instead of taking them over to the fight. And these guys, these Cubans, I mean they were dedicated, they were dedicated, these were .. Well, when you get down to what’s a patriot?, what’s a terrorist? The Cubans may have been terrorists, that’s for them being patriots, okay? A patriot and a terrorist, the only difference is what side of the fence you are on. Everybody is fighting for what they believe in. But these Cubans, they were fighters. They wanted to go! And they were very upset with the Agency and a lot of other people, because they didn’t make the scene.
Q- During that time, during the time of the Bay of Pigs, while you were training and moving around in the Caribbean, No Name Key and all that, did you ever hear the name George Herbert Walker Bush?
A- Oh Yeah.
Q- What was his role?
A- George Herbert Walker Bush. I don’t know if . I think a lot of people are not going to believe this, but he worked for the CIA back as early as 1961 that I know of.
Q- How did he work? What did he do?
A- I don’t know all he did, but he did a lot of recruiting work. I know he was there at the beginning for what we called Group 40, a special operations group, Group 40. If you wonder what Group 40 was, an assassination group.
Cut in tape
Q- We missed the torture so far. – The torture is important. And maybe a character impression of Lee Harvey Oswald? You wanna talk about Marilyn Monroe here?
A- No, that’s irrelevant there.
Q- Just to interject, , was it the Kennedy’s or the mob that hit Marilyn?
A- The mob hit her, but they had done, they did it on the request of the Kennedys
Q- Okay, the lead into this: Ah, do you have any proof of what you told us in regard to the Kennedy Assassination?
A- When it gets down to this part about where a lot of people ask a lot of different questions about things, the one thing that I could verify, right now, which cannot be made public, is the ledger. Diary, ledger, whichever you prefer to call it. Focus on papers and things that Charles Nicoletti gave to me before he was killed. Things got pretty active here. Ah, Sam Giancana was the first one to be killed and that was in uh.’75 and I’m not sure, maybe September, it was ’75, go there. He was killed, and the night he was killed, Johnny Roselli was in town. Because I saw Johnny Roselli at the airport. And when Johnny Roselli came in – we didn’t talk or anything – I was there to pick somebody else up that had come in on that flight, just by coincidence. And I’m picking up a party that I had done a lot of work for, collecting money and things. But anyway, I see Johnny and we nodded at each other, he had another man with him. When they left, we were right behind them. They got in their vehicle alongside, we got ours, we took off, we went down the road. We went down River Road proceeding South. Niki (inaudible) said the only place Johnny could be going is going over to see Sam. On fifth avenue and River Road in Belmont there, they had a place called the Blue Horizon. Johnny pulled in there momentarily and the guy with him went out. Whoever this guy was, he wasn’t going to Sam’s house, because Sam didn’t like a lot of people coming to his house and if he didn’t know them, they were not going to get in anyway. And Johnny went on. I went my way, Johnny Roselli went his. Johnny Roselli …The next morning, I woke up: Sam Giancana had been executed, gangland style. When he was killed, bells rang off to me, Johnny Roselli had to be the one to do it. Because he was there, I know he went to Sam’s house that night. The following year Johnny Roselli was killed. When Johnny Roselli was killed, the party I figure was the same guy that he dropped off … There was two people killed down there in Tampa, St. Peter in that area. They got rid of them at the same time. One was Johnny Roselli. The other one, another party unknown, whoever it was, I don’t remember the name of him now, but evidently it was a friend of his that he traveled to Chicago with. I figured he knew something and somebody took him out too, because they knew that Johnny Roselli, what he had done, okay? This guy, he might have told this guy, this guy knew, so they got rid of him.
And when it comes down to it, the crime family did not have Sam Giancana killed. I don’t know who killed him except for Johnny Roselli, but I believe that the government ordered it. A contract killing on Sam Giancana. I believe the government is the one that killed Johnny Roselli, to shut him up so he couldn’t talk.
Q- All of this was at about the time of the House Select Committee on Assassinations?
A- All of it, yes. But anybody that knew Sam Giancana, would have known that Sam Giancana would never have talked. He would have gone to jail. He would have kept his mouth shut. He would NOT talk. The following year, Johnny Roselli, he got killed, and they silenced him. And then, in April, it was April 19th or . no march, march 29. This is the night that Charles Nicoletti was killed. And he was supposed to go testify before some committee. And he was killed at the Golden Horns, right there in Melrose Park, there on North Avenue and Mannheim Road, the Golden Horns restaurant. And I thought at first that maybe someone in the family had hit him, because we knew there was trouble, and right before his dead, he had given me this package and told me : „this is my life insurance.” He said: „If I need someone to have it, you can always get to it.” He said: „And if anything happens to me, you might need it some day.” So what he gave me was . I took it and I went out, got me some cheesecloth and I wrapped up the little package and put it in a little box. I went out, dug a hole and I buried it. Put it away and covered it all up. So . about a week, a week and a half later, you know, Chuck was killed. After he was killed, right after that, maybe another week or 10 days later.. I had two places on Lake Street there in Melrose Park. One was a restaurant called the Coffee Cup, it’s no longer there, it has been closed down , they put a parking lot there for the Westlake hospital. And right down below it, going East on the following block down, it must have been the 1100 block, I had a club there, a social club. And what that was, we did bookmaking there, we had card games there, we had a couple of pool tables in there. And that’s where a lot of the guys came and hang out there. We didn’t have any booze there and we didn’t have any women there. What we did: You wanted to gamble, you come in and you gamble and you come and you hang out to be with the guys. And when people came around, come to the club there to gamble and play, I didn’t charge them for nothing. I wanted something I call it for resting out.
Well, it’s about 11 o’ clock, 11:30, I call up to the restaurant and I told my grill man, a guy called Gorilla, and I said: „Fix me up a couple of dozen hamburgers, fries, a dozen of black coffees and get it ready!” He said: „Hey boss, let me bring it down to the club!” I say: „Stay where you are, you don’t belong here, stay up there!” Because Gorilla, he loved to come down there and hanging out and gamble and everything else. And I had him working behind the grill. I said: „When you get it fixed, give me a buzz! When it’s ready to be picked up!” He said: „Okay boss!” He always called me boss. He got it ready, called back to the club: „Hey boss, it’s ready! Wanna pick it up? I’ll run it down if you want to stay there!” – „No, don’t worry! I’ll come and get it! So put it in a box!”
He had a cardboard box and he put it in. It was ready to go, like always, we had done this many times. Time after time after time, there was nothing unusual about it, you know. Well, I walk out of the club. It’s a nice night out, you know. So I walk down at the corner and a car is coming down off the side street onto Lake Street. When it comes up, it’s like them rocking for a Hollywood stop, it comes up the stop sign and stop , hits the brakes and kind of rocks back. I step back on to the curb so I don’t get run over. I’m thinking nothing about it, this is not shocking at all. And they said Hello, somebody sticks something out of the window and I got sprayed in the face. And I hit the ground, not even remembering falling down.
When I came to, I was strapped up, tied up, blindfolded. And uh … I went through a pretty severe torture test. And all this here has been verified also. What they wanted, they wanted the ledger ….. They never got it. When they got through with me, my legs were still taped together and my arms and wrists were still taped behind my back. They threw me out of a car, up there in Elmhurst. People found me, they called the cops up. Police came out there, some of them recognized me. Everybody in town had known that I had gone missing. Everybody figured I was dead.
Q- When they threw you out of the car, do you think they thought you were dead?
A- Oh, they thought I was dead, definitely! Otherwise they had never left me alive. That’s why I have always blamed the FBI for it. Because the family or the CIA, they would have put a couple of holes in the back of my head and four or five inside the mouth through the palate, gangland execution style. These people, they didn’t know that. When I lost consciousness and couldn’t be brought back, evidently they figured I was dead. They didn’t bother to un-tape me or nothing, I was still naked, they threw me out of the car, in the nude, ankles still taped, hands behind my back, everything still taped up. And so … the Elmhurst police, they knew who I was. They picked me up, they took me in their place, wanted to put me in the hospital, they took me over to the emergency room as a matter of fact, and they made a couple of phone calls and notified my wife. My wife had a heart attack. As soon as she answered the phone, “This is Elmhurst Police. Mrs. Files, we have found your husband.” She didn’t know I wasn’t dead, you know. So she broke down, she got all hysterical. Her mother was there and they got a hold of Gorilla and they all came out there to get me. They took me home, but they wanted to put me in the hospital. I said: „No, I’m not going to the hospital. Take me home!“ I couldn’t even talk, I’m writing notes, “I wanna go home! I wanna go home!” I’m scrapping it out on paper. My throat, I had screamed so much, I had no voice left.
So Gorilla, he is sitting in the house with me, and if I had to go to the bathroom, he picked me up to carry me to the bathroom. And he is sitting there, I got a Remington model 870, on the side of it stamped „law enforcement only“, folding stock, 8 rounds in it. I had a gun (inaudible) each end of the block. Some of the (inaudible) police said: „Man, you need (inaudible), we’ll cover you, we’ll park our cars there!” I said: „No, I got my own guys here, don’t worry about it! Just tell ‘m that nobody mess with them.”- „We got you covered.” – „You guys are okay, don’t worry about it!”
So over the next few days, like four days, until I could talk again, Gorilla stayed right there in the house with me, he didn’t even go home.
And they never got the ledger. That’s still missing. Not missing, I know where it is. And let me clarify one thing: Nobody in the world knows where that is but me! It’s right here! (pointing to head). Nobody else can ever take them to it.
Q- Still your insurance policy?
A- It still is. And if I die, all those secrets in that book go to my grave with me.
Q- And what’s all in that package? It a little box, isn’t it?
A- It’s a little box. A little package inside cheesecloth, inside a metal box.
Q- What’s in there?
A- What is in there? Inside this ledger what they wanted . I’ve got a few other things in there, but what they wanted is this ledger, because it’s got just about everything in there , basically every murder that was carried out in the Chicago-land area. It has got dates, it has got names, figures of money, different things, reasons why, people who ordered it.
Q – Anything in there about the JFK hit?
A – You’ve got a couple of little lines in there. It has got JFK down, it has got the date on it. Basically that’s it.
Q – Anything else in there that concerns the assassination?
A – No, just that. Just the date, the name and everything, but it’s all in Chuck’s own handwriting.
Q- Okay, what he originally gave you, was it only the diary? The ledger?
A- No, what he gave me, he gave me.. what was in the package, I disposed of a lot of it, like Secret Service identification, I didn’t need that, I disposed of (inaudible) map, the last minute change, that was irrelevant, I burned all that stuff, I got rid of that, the only thing that I kept, was the ledger. The ledger retains basically to the contract around town, local people, people that was paid, people that was hit, the dates, when it happened and sometimes the reason why.
Q- And why would the FBI care about all that?
A- Oh, they would have loved that, because they could have put a lot of people in jail.
Q- and they could clear a lot of cases?
A- Oh, they could have cleared a lot of cases. They could close the door on a lot of murder cases. I am going to say probably maybe sixty, sixty contract killings in Chicago over the years there.
Q- Why did you burn the motorcade route?
A- I didn’t need it. It wasn’t important to me. What’s that good for? That was only an admission to part of a murder.
Q – Evidence?
A – Charles Nicoletti is dead. At this point the only thing that I am going to hold is the ledger. Like he said, the ledger is everything. Diary, ledger, whatever you ‘re gonna call it, but everything else I disposed of. I had no need for it.
Q – Yeah. Tell us a little bit about Lee Harvey Oswald and your impression of him.
A – My impression of Lee Harvey Oswald? Lee Harvey Oswald was a very quiet type of person, secluded, very private. Mind-own mannered, you might say, there wasn’t one day, he didn’t do a lot of boasting or bragging, he didn’t do a lot of cavorting, what he did he kept for himself. Lee Harvey Oswald as far as I’m concerned, I liked the guy. Very intelligent, very intelligent! When we got into certain subjects . I mean he could make me look like a dummy. Let’s face it!
Q- So he was a lot better educated than uh..
A- Oh, he was a lot better educated than what people say. Lee Harvey Oswald, he had very good self-control, because .. he had a little scar upon his lip and I asked him one time how he got it and he told me it was in the Marine Corps. Somebody hit him with the butt of a rifle up here . and I thought . I said „You must have ripped their guts out, or ripped their ass off!“ „ No“, he said. „I didn’t do that.“ I said „What do you mean?“ „No, it was an accident. I didn’t even get upset about it,“ But that’s the type of person he was. He was calm, he was collect.
Q- Capable of killing someone?
A- No . Lee Harvey Oswald . well, everybody is capable of killing somebody, let’s face it. If you’ve got your back to the wall, but as far as Lee Harvey Oswald a killer? No, he wasn’t an assassin, no.
Q- Do you think the American public really wants to know the truth of the Kennedy Assassination?
A- Oh, I don’t think they really do. I don’t think they really care. But one more thing about Lee Harvey Oswald. Lee Harvey Oswald, and I say he wasn’t a killer and anything like that, Lee Harvey Oswald, he had it all up here (pointing at head). Very very intelligent. I want to say: He had a good IQ. And he held a top secret security clearance. And there is another thing I’d like to state to get on record. They talk about Lee Harvey Oswald and this and that, and him running off to the Russians. The only way that Lee Harvey Oswald could have gone to Moscow, he held a top secret security clearance when he was on the base in Japan, he held a top secret security clearance and people can go check this anyway, and the days of the Cold War, you did not jump on a plane and fly to a communist country and I don’t care who you was, you had to be cleared for it. The only people who could have engineered that for him to go to Moscow, was the CIA. And the Russians were so scared of Lee Harvey Oswald over there, not fearful of what he would do to them, they knew what was going down. They gave him a place to stay and he wound up marrying Marina over there. And they were so happy to put him back on a plane and send him back to the US.
Q- What was going down then? What was the mission for Lee Harvey Oswald?
A- I have no idea what the mission was, but he went over there for some reason. I never asked him, he never told me, I never asked him why he went to Russia, but you cannot tell me that he was disgruntled with this country and he wanted to go there and be a member of the communist party. There’s no way. He took a cover and he went and they just wouldn’t buy the story.
Q- Would you describe him as patriotic?
A- Ah, I would say Lee ., he did a lot of work for his country, everything he did was basically on his country. He was not a traitor. I don’t care what anybody says. All those research places, everybody can say all they want. I knew Lee Harvey Oswald, he wasn’t that type of person, he wasn’t a traitor.
Q- Has any other journalist other than myself come and talk to you? (Jim Marrs)
Q- As a journalist, outside of Joe West and Bob Vernon, no. I’ve never given any other interviews to nobody.
Q- Did you talk to Mike Cochran?
A- Mike Cochran. Who is Mike Cochran?
Q- He was with the Associated Press.
A- Ah, No, I did not talk to Mike Cochran. I talked to a guy by the name of Don Fulsom from there, but he never came here to visit me, we only wrote two letters.
Q- Oh, okay. Why do you suppose the news media don’t take an interest in your story?
A- Nobody wants to admit it. Everybody thinks I am a nut job. But like I say, I’ve had enough things that I have said, it has been clarified, it has been verified, there’s documents…. But nobody really wants to solve the Kennedy case. The American people, I don’t really think they care. The news media, they need something that they can go with every year. You’ve got a lot of people that make a lot of money writing books. I don’t know how many books, how many books have been written about it?
Q- A couple of thousand?
A- Yeah. Why put all them people out of work?
- Down to three minutes before tape ends
Q- All right, if you consider that you were talking to the American people, what would you tell them about the Kennedy Assassination?
A- At the time I believed the Kennedy Assassination was a necessity. The reason it was carried out, the reason it was ordered, and my own belief is the money people, the power people, they wanted to stay in South East Asia. It’s not about „Who did what to who“ over here, it’s about the money that was to be made. John F. Kennedy wanted to bring all the boys home from South East Asia that were over there. Certain people wanted to keep those guys over there. We needed it, because there was going to be deep sea ports built, there was going to the biggest runways in the world built, for bombers in different places, in Guam, Okinawa, South East Asia is gonna be flooded with airbases. We’re not talking millions or, we’re talking maybe a trillion of dollars or more. You’ve got your chemical companies that’s going to come in. This is the greatest ground there ever was for chemical warfare testing. And to have a war you need deep sea ports, you need runways, air planes, manufacturers, tanks, weaponry, ammunition, munitions to be made, bombs to be made. We’re talking, we’re talking an all time economics deal here. Big money! Sad to say: The rich get rich, the poor get poor. The poor died, the rich got richer.
Q- All right, you are an explosive expert .
- Cut in tape -
Off camera, Jim Marrs asks an opinion about the WTC towers collapsing on 9/11. James Files says it looked like a controlled demolition to him.
Q – So the one that got hit second, fell first?
A – Right, they pushed the wrong button. Otherwise they would have waited another half hour, 45 minutes, for the other one going down. But those buildings ..
Q- Was that a tip-off for you?
A- That was a big tip-off for me when I see them come down. And I tell you were my knowledge is, and you can check this out with the FBI. They had me for the bombing in Chicago over there, on the North side, Ralston Motors. This place cover like a whole block. When this building came down, and I went to trial on it, 1983, right there in Chicago, they held me for 13 months in the MCC correctional center there. I hadn’t put a brick across the sidewalk, I put everything inside the building. That’s how good it was. They knew I had done it, everybody else knew I had done it.
Q- Everything just plunged, right there?
A- Yeah, I was already doing 20 years for the chop shop operation, and they wanted me to plead guilty and they would give me another twenty and run it concurrent, they told me. My words was, “Fuck you. Put me on trial!” I went to trial. Jimmy Gaudio, my partner, he wound up pleading guilty. First he was going to beef against me. There is another party, Lou Cavalaro, better known as Blind Louie, when he was young and we rubbed together, his name was Bad Boy Louie. And when I say bad, he was bad. But as we got older and went into crime-life and everything else, we separated for a long time and we got back together, but they called him Blind Louie. Blind Louie, we moved him out there to Arizona, from the Chicago area, he lived there in Elmhurst. As a matter of fact they did a thing on him on ABC one night. They were interviewing him about him living and this and that, (and that it) must be hard (inaudible). He said: „It’s really hard for me to get by. I have to struggle!“ He didn’t know they got cameras out back, showing the swimming pool in the backyard, all the Cadillac’s in the driveway, he has got a beautiful home, 300 , 400.000 dollar home.
Q-And he is struggling?
A- And he is struggling, yeah! And we moved him out there anyway. But while we are out there and I’m on trial, he got a call from Louie. They got him hooked up to talk to Louie at the MCC in Chicago where he is being held on bond. And they told him: „If you testify against Jimmy, you don’t have to worry about going to prison.” He (Louie) said : „You don’t ever testify against him!” And so Jimmy Gaudio refused to testify against me. I was acquitted of the case.
Q- Okay. Have you ever heard of operation Mongoose?
A- Oh yeah. Who hasn’t?
Q- That was the nexus, wasn’t it? That’s where it all came together.
A – Yeah, they had a whole bunch of them there, they had a bunch of different programs there, I can remember the names of all of them, but they had several of them.
Q- Did you ever meet Lansdale?
A – Lansdale, no.
Q – The picture of you with the guy that killed Tippit, where was that taken?
A- New Orleans.
Q- New Orleans?
A – Yeah, New Orleans.
Q – In 1961?
A – No, that was in 1962, late ’62.
Q- Were you 21 at that time?
A – No, 20.
Q – How old are you now?
A – I was born in ’42. I am 61, fixed to go 62.
Q – January, right?
A – Yeah, January.
Q – You’re just a year older than I am.
Q- Oh yeah, you said you think the American people don’t really care about solving and knowing the truth about the JFK assassination.
A – I don’t, no. That’s like with Bob ..
Q – Well, I think they do, but their government is covering it up and they don’t know .
A- I think people are tired of hearing about it, I really do. That’s why I tried to convince Bob to go with something else. I told Bob, “Man, you gotta go listen to a couple of stories about South America.” I said: „Man I’ve got some good stuff about down there”, but Bob did want no part of it.
Q – But they are NOT tired of hearing about it. It’s the 40th anniversary now and all these TV shows are on.
A – Yeah, it’s all the same old rehash.
A – I watched another two hours last night on the American Experience. Monday night I watched 3 hours and I watched 2 more hours last night. And what I had told Pamela before, it was along time ago about JFK when he met with Krushauv, we talked about it yesterday. And they had it on TV, how Krushauv talked down to him and he walked out of there, they showed the actual footage of him coming out the meeting and get in the car. They had to help him (JFK) in the car. He was stunned.
A- And like I told: He wasn’t as big a war hero like everybody says. They finally put it on TV. They said Monday night that John F. Kennedy was not the big war hero that everybody made him out to be.
Q- He had lost his ship.
A – Yeah I know (inaudible)
Q- Jimmy, tell him about the Bay of Pigs, I mean the Cuban missile crisis. That it was not really necessary, that blockade.
A- Okay. Everybody was so concerned about going to nuclear war. All right. You know about Edwin P. Wilson, right“ You’ve heard of him?
A- He was with ONI back then. Office of Naval Intelligence. All right, he was pretty tight at that time with Frank Sturgis. But he knew about it, the Naval Intelligence people knew about this, when Kennedy had met Krushauv, okay? He made an agreement and nobody knew, this whole country never knew it. And they didn’t want the country to know about it. He made an agreement to take our missiles out of Turkey that time. Krushauv would take his missiles out of Cuba, okay? They agreed to do this. They put the blockade up to hold face. He panicked the whole country to think we were going to nuclear war.
Q- So the agreement was made before…?
A- Yeah, the agreement was made before the blockade. Once the blockade was up and the ships in route, it’s too late to do anything (make an agreement). Because they had the one ship I guess coming with more missiles, and it pulled up to the blockade and then they backed off, they turned around and they went away.
Q- So that was just to save face and .?
A- Save face! That was another farce, just like the Maddox. Remember the Maddox?
Q- Oh yeah.
A- Okay. Another one of this deals there.
Q- A phoney deal?
A- Another phoney deal!
Q- How do we know this is true what you’re telling?
A- Well, what I heard, was , like .. I was told that ., Wilson he heard it , he got it through the Office of Naval Intelligence and he had talked with Frank Sturgis about it and I was there when they were talking to Frank and he said, “Hey, there ain’t gonna be nuclear war!” (I said) „What do you mean? What do you know?” Because I was concerned at this point too. And Frank told me. And I say: „Nah, you’re shitting me!” – „No”, he said. „I ‘m serious. I’m telling you how it is. There ain’t gonna be nuclear war. We’re relaxed. Forget about it!”
Q- So that’s how you knew it was a phoney deal?
A- I told my mother: „Don’t worry about it, mash!” (She said:) „What do you know? You’re a kid! What do you know?” When she heard me swearing on the street or something (happened) when a woman was around the house, she run out of the house with a broom , chasing me down the street, beating me with the broom, up and down 22nd Avenue.
Q- There goes my Kennedy legacy… O man, Well, are they going to come when it’s time? How does this work?
A- Whenever you’re ready to go, we can go out there and tell ‘em.
Q- Are you getting tired?
A- Not me.
Q- Well, I was just gonna say: Drink some more water ! But I noticed you have not been drinking any of that stuff.
A- I ‘m gonna tell you something: I have wanted to meet you for a long time, okay? Honestly, I wanted to meet you for a long time. When Pamela told me you were the one that was going to do the interview, I was totally excited about it.
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