Here’s my analysis of those ten parts of Sorrel’s WC testimony. Forrest Sorrels was involved in more aspects of the JFK trip to Dallas than any other Dallas official. The following is my opinion.
The role of Forrest Sorrels probably begins back in the summer of 1963 in New Orleans. Sorrels (a highly educated gentleman) was a fellow traveler with the Dallas Radical Right. His closest allies in Dallas would probably have been two extremist members of the John Birch Society (JBS), namely, billionaire H.L. Hunt and University of Dallas president Robert Morris.
The Dallas Radical Right worked closely with the New Orleans Radical Right and with the fiercely anti-Communist ex-FBI agent, Guy Banister. Banister led a fake CIA crew, David Ferrie, Jack S. Martin, Fred Crisman, Carlos Bringuier, Ed Butler, Gerry Patrick Hemming, Loran Hall, Thomas Beckham and many others in New Orleans, trying to infiltrate Fidel Castro’s “Fair Play for Cuba Committee” (FPCC).
The backstory as provided by Jim Garrison (1969) is that Lee Harvey Oswald (LHO) worked with Guy Banister in a fake branch of the FPCC in New Orleans. Banister and his crew ensured that LHO was documented in police records, FBI records, as well as newspaper, radio and TV as an “officer” of the FPCC. It was all fake.
By collecting newspaper reports of all this publicity, Guy Banister’s crew put together a fake Communist resumé for LHO to take to Mexico City Embassies, claiming FPCC privilege in order to get an instant Visa to Cuba. Although LHO was laughed out of the Mexico City Embassies – a mole in the CIA faked a telephone call from the Cuba Consulate to the Soviet Embassy, using the name of LHO and asking for a notorious KGB agent, Valeriy Kostikov. So now, LHO was a Communist in CIA files as well.
LHO failed to get his Visa, but the Dallas Radical Right succeeded in getting LHO totally framed.
The plan in Dallas, as I surmise, was to convince LHO to bring his personal rifle to the TSBD on Friday (upon some other pretext – not the JFK plot). LHO, trusting his Radical Right accomplices, did their bidding. With his weapon, the Radical Right would frame LHO as the JFK shooter from the TSBD.
The plan in Dallas, as I surmise, was for JD Tippit to shoot LHO somewhere in the streets of Dallas – and then to use all the New Orleans police, newspaper, radio, TV and Mexico City CIA records to “prove” that LHO was a Communist. In this way, the public would believe that JFK was killed by a Communist plot. That was the plan. But something went wrong. JD Tippit did not get his man.
With that background in mind, let’s return my commentary on the WC testimony of Dallas SS agent Forrest Sorrels. His testimony is so long that I will stick to my original outline of his testimony to include my remarks. My remarks will be in red italics.
Part 1: ADVANCE PREPARATION -- NOVEMBER 4 - 14.
Sorrels knew the drill. The White House would send its own Secret Service (SS) men to Dallas to meet Sorrels along with Chief Curry and his staff, to plan out the police details for the visit. Everything now depended upon how well Sorrels could deceive the White House SS men.
On November 4, 1963, White House SS agent Gerald Behn arrived for the first meeting.
Behn wanted the Trade Mart as the speech venue. Sorrels didn’t care one way or the other about the speech venue. The only thing that mattered, according to the JBS and to General Walker, was that “no Communist must be allowed to finish a speech in any town that the JBS controlled.” They had succeeded with Adlai Stevenson. They would succeed with JFK.
Sorrels went through the motions. The Trade Mart, the State Fairgrounds or Market Hall? He made it look realistic. He stroked his chin and discussed it with his staff.
The Trade Mart had too many exits, 60, and would require too many officers to guard. Why not select another? Yet Behn insisted on the Trade Mart.
On November 13, 1963, White House SS agent Winston Lawson arrived in Dallas to officially survey all three places one more time. Lawson, Sorrels and the Dallas Chamber of Commerce all agreed – the Trade Mart was the most Presidential.
Part 2: THE PRS QUESTION – NOVEMBER 14
On November 14, however, Winston Lawson couldn’t believe that there were zero dangerous people in Dallas, as reported by Forrest Sorrels. So, Lawson called the White House PRS for confirmation. To his surprise, the PRS confirmed Sorrells’ report. Lawson didn’t suspect that the PRS was getting its information from Sorrels’ accomplice, Dallas FBI agent James Hosty.
Lawson remembered the October 24th physical attack of Adlai Stevenson in Dallas, only three weeks earlier. To deceive Lawson and the PRS, Sorrels sent his staff to Denton, Texas, because some of the students at the Adlai protest went to college there.
Sorrels told the WC that the Adlai protest had occurred “60 days” before Lawson’s visit, and he said it had been “quite some time” ago. This deception confirms the earlier deception. The proximity of the events was significant, so Sorrels tried to minimize it.
The Dallas SS staff, unaware of Sorrel’s plot, worked diligently on their (phony) task. The Sheriff of Denton had an informant inside that college group, and Sorrels got Dallas Lieutenant Jack Revill to get photos of the student troublemakers. Forrest Sorrels knew very well that the organizer of the US Day march against Adlai’s UN Day event only three weeks ago was General Edwin Walker. Almost everybody in Dallas knew it, since it in all the local Dallas press. Folks from the White House naively depended upon the local FBI and local Secret Service to inform them. What could they do if the local FBI and local Secret Service conspired to deceive them? Nothing, evidently.
They went to the trouble of scouring film for the Denton informant to identify each protester, and then obtained photos and sent those photos to those in charge of the Trade Mart! Sorrels knew very well that this was a wasted effort – but it successfully deceived Winston Lawson.
Sorrels admitted to the WC that these students weren’t dangerous, because they never directly named JFK in their protests. But to calm Winston Lawson, Sorrels “made the sacrifice.”
Sorrels admitted that outside agencies of the Federal government offered to help Sorrels in the task of Presidential protection, Sorrels turned them all down – he would use only Dallas Police for this task.
Part 3: PLANNING THE MOTORCADE ROUTE – NOVEMBER 15.
Winston Lawson decided on a motorcade, so they all spoke about the route.
Sorrels suggested a motorcade from Fort Worth to Dallas – because that would be faster. Sorrels pretended to be helpful – but he was really biding his time.
Lawson demanded the best route from Love Field to the Trade Mart, maximizing JFK visibility to the public and taking no longer than 45 minutes.
On November 15, 1963, Forrest Sorrels proposed the exact route: from Love Field to Mockingbird Lane, left onto Lemmon, right onto Turtle Creek, left onto Cedar Springs, left onto Harwood, right onto Main Street, right onto Houston Street, left onto Elm, straight to Stemmons Expressway onramp, and then to the Trade Mart.
Sorrels drove Lawson on that route, and Lawson liked it. Then they repeated the route with select members of the DPD.
Sorrels explained why he chose to go past the Grassy Knoll, with all its ideal sniper places, instead of alternate routes. He said that there is a concrete island barrier between Main Street and Stemmons Freeway. Also, one could go farther and then make a sharp U-turn, but that was too tight for a Presidential limousine. (The WC attorneys did not press the issue further.)
As for all the many buildings along the motorcade route – especially on Main Street, there was nothing anybody could do except watch and react. Nothing.
Sorrels himself had remarked at the time that if anyone who wanted to kill JFK could do it from a tall building using “a high-powered rifle with a telescopic sight.” Everyone there agreed.
The DPD agreed that Sorrels’ choice of route was the best.
Part 4: A HANDBILL: WANTED FOR TREASON: JFK – NOVEMBER 21
When the WC pressed Sorrels about any contact that he had with FBI agent James Hosty in the days leading up to the JFK visit to Dallas, Sorrels recalled that on the morning of November 21st, Hosty had brought him some handbills with mug shots of JFK, labeled: “Wanted for Treason!”
Sorrels told Hosty that the DPD had already brought some earlier in the morning, and he had asked the DPD for witnesses, but they had none. He asked SS informants, but they had nothing. “We had no leads,” claimed Sorrels. Actually; Sorrels knew very well that Robert Alan Surrey was the publisher of those handbills, and that Surrey was a close friend of his own friend, James Hosty, and that Surrey was the president of General Walker’s publishing company. This was common knowledge among Dallas officials (according to Chris Cravens, 1991). Although the JFK plot was a Dallas-wide plot, the White House would have no clue if the local FBI and SS chose to keep local knowledge secret.
Part 5: THE MOTORCADE AT DEALEY PLAZA – NOVEMBER 22
Around 11:30 AM on Friday, November 22nd, JFK and his entourage arrived at Love Field airport and soon began the JFK motorcade. Forrest Sorrels rode in the lead car in front of JFK’s car. Chief Curry drove that lead car, with Sheriff Bill Decker riding shotgun, with Winston Lawson in the back seat with Sorrels.
The purpose of the lead car was for Sorrels, the White House SS agent, and Chief Curry to observe the environment as the motorcade moved along, looking for anybody holding a rifle or gun or any throwing or tossing anything.
While riding in the JFK motorcade, Sorrels exclaimed how many people hung out of windows.
Turning right from onto Houston, Sorrels noticed the open windows on the TSBD, with two or three colored men looking out from windows right of center, two floors from the top. (This was not Sorrels’ great memory at work; rather, Sorrels studied all the photographs available to officials.) Sorrels looked for any movement or activity in all the open windows – and he saw none. Yet several witnesses at Dealey Plaza saw men with guns in those windows. Also, Mrs. Earle Cabell herself, while in the JFK motorcade, saw a man with a gun in a high window of the TSBD. Sorrels knew who and what was up there on the 6th floor. He simply denied everything.
Sorrels claimed that at this time the lead car was only about 30 feet in front of JFK’s car. Yet film of the motorcade at Dealey Plaza doesn’t show us the lead car. In my opinion, the lead car was more than 100 feet away – as much distance as plausible.
Sorrels saw nothing unusual in the crowd along Houston and Elm – and neither did anybody else. That is because nobody in Dallas would ever suspect the Dallas Police of wrongdoing. The only conspicuous people around the Grassy Knoll, in the windows of the TSDB, the Dal-Tex and the County Records buildings, were Dallas Police and Deputies.
As the lead car turned left on Elm Street, Sorrels briefly glanced at the TSBD. He claims he saw nothing suspicious, yet Sorrels knew exactly what was going to happen inside the TSBD building, inside the County Records building and behind the picket fence of the Grassy Knoll.
The crowd had begun to thin out on Elm Street. Sorrels explained why witnesses reported that the lead car was several car lengths ahead of JFK’s limo on Elm – he said the lead car picked up speed after the turn, because Lawson complained that they were getting late.
No worries, he assured Lawson. Five minutes late is very little. Curry agreed.
They called the Trade Mart on police radio, advising they were almost there. Suddenly, the first shot rang out.
Sorrels turned around to look at the Grassy Knoll area. Soon there were two more shots. That was, of course, the official WC story. Almost everybody agreed with that – with notable exceptions. Many scholarly accounts counted several “missed shots” which the WC never counted nor would even discuss. Sorrels said that he “recalled” the time between the first and the second shots to be 3 seconds, but probably he had studied the Zapruder film more than anybody.
Sorrels said, “Let’s get out of here!” A motorcycle officer pulled up to Sheriff Decker, and Chief Curry yelled, “Anybody hurt?” The officer said, “Yes!” Curry shouted, “Lead us to the hospital!”
Chief Curry took his DPD microphone and ordered the Dispatcher, “Surround the building!” This was what Sorrels testified, and he stuck by this story when asked multiple times. Yet Curry said no such thing. Curry remembered what police radio logs recorded: “Get a man on top of that triple underpass and see what happened up there!” Then, Sheriff Decker took the police radio mike and added, “I am sure it's going to take some time to get your man in there…Move all available men out of my office into the railroad yard to try to determine what happened…until Homicide…investigators should get there!” Only Sorrels testified to the phrase, “that building.” Obviously, the TSBD was heavy on his mind. It was a Freudian slip.
Sorrels ordered Chief Curry to floor it, to remain the lead car.
Sorrels estimated that shots took 6 seconds total. (He had studied the Zapruder film.) All three shots “definitely” came from the same direction, he said; from his rear right. We should recognize that this included the TSBD, the Grassy Knoll, the Dal-Tex and the County Records buildings.
Sorrels was “positive” that no shots came from the overpass. So am I.
Sorrels saw no reason to doubt that all the shots came from the TSBD. Yet generations of scholarly researchers have expressed solid reasons to doubt it, and I claim that Sorrels knew very well that there were multiple shooters at multiple locations taking multiple shots each, many of which missed. Yet the official WC story would keep the peace in the USA, so it became dogma.
Part 6: INTERVIEWING WITNESSES AT DEALEY PLAZA – NOVEMBER 22
The lead car, driven by Chief Curry, with Sheriff Decker next to him, and SS agents Lawson and Sorrels in the back seat, sped to Parkland Hospital.
When they arrived, watched as the Secret Service rushed LBJ, Connally and JFK inside.
Sorrels then rushed to a police car to be sped to the TSBD!
The WC attorneys demanded: “Why the TSBD?” Sorrels explained that he only wanted the general vicinity of the TSBD in order to interview Dealey Plaza witnesses. Another Freudian slip. Sorrels had the TSBD in his mind from the start. He knew that the preparation of the TSBD was crucial, as was the screening of eyewitnesses. He would take a leadership role.
Because he used speeding police cars to and from Parkland Hospital, Sorrels estimated that only 20 minutes had passes since the time of the first shot before he returned to Dealey Plaza. That would make it about 12:50 PM.
At the TSBD at 12:50 PM, Sorrels saw many Dallas police meandering outside the TSBD, and the building was still not sealed off. Sorrels came around the rear entrance and saw no Police Guard at the door. He presumably saw a colored employee on the rear loading platform, and called out, “Did you see anyone leave the back way?” “No, sir.”
Sorrels saw no policeman stationed at the loading platform when he came up. He was able to enter the building without identifying himself.
Sorrels entered a full house. He demanded the manager. Roy Truly was standing right there. Sorrels demanded a stenographer to write the names and addresses of every employee in the building, to interview them all as potential witnesses, not potential suspects.
Sorrels then walked out the front door and asked, “Did anyone here see anything?” Someone pointed to Howard Brennan.
Brennan was ultimately the only Dealey Plaza witness who had clearly seen the face of the shooter. If he could identify LHO then the case would be closed. Brennan told Sorrels that after two shots, he looked up at the TSBD and saw a man at the window on the extreme east side, 2nd floor from the top.
Brennan saw the man take deliberate aim and fire the 3rd shot and then calmly pulled the rifle back and stepped away from the window.
Sorrels asked Brennan if he could identify the shooter. Brennan said, “Maybe,” but all he could immediately remember was that the shooter was “slender,” and wore a “light jacket.”
Sorrels asked for other witnesses. Brennan pointed to a high school student named Amos Euins.
Euins said that he heard a shot and looked up and saw a man shooting a rifle from a window; but he couldn’t be certain if the shooter was black or white.
So, Sorrels took Brennan and Euins to the Sheriff’s office to make affidavits.
Seeking other witnesses, Sorrels met Mr. and Mrs. Arnold Roland who had been standing on Houston Street outside the Sheriff’s office since 12:10 PM. Roland looked up at a high floor on the TSBD and saw a man standing at a window holding a rifle with a telescopic sight. He told his wife, “I guess that’s a Secret Service man.” Without her glasses, she could see nothing there.
Sorrels demanded: “What made you think it had a telescopic sight?” Roland replied, “It seemed like it was whiter against a light background.” That was a reasonable answer. Sorrels demanded, “How was he holding it?” Roland said, “Port arms – standing several feet away from the window.” That was another reasonable answer.
Sorrels asked Roland: “Could you identify the man?” Roland replied, “No, I could not.”
Sorrels demanded, “You were standing by the Sheriff’s office! Why didn’t you report it?” Roland replied, “I thought he was a Secret Service man.” That was another reasonable answer.
Sorrels saw no reason to doubt Brennan, Euins or Roland. Nor do I, to this point.
About that time, Dallas police reported that they had found a rifle and rifle shells in the TSBD on the 6th floor. So, this tied everything together. Sorrels stopped looking for other witnesses.
Suddenly, McCormack from the Dallas Morning News rushed up and exclaimed, “Forrest, I have man here who got film of this whole thing.” They rushed to meet this man.
Abraham Zapruder was almost too excited about his historic film. Sorrels asked Zapruder for a copy. Zapruder agreed. After some searching, they got Eastman Kodak to develop the film as fast as possible.
Part 7: INTERVIEWING LHO ON FRIDAY – NOVEMBER 22
At the Eastman Kodak office, about 2 PM, Sorrels called his own office for the first time since leaving Love Field. He learned that Captain Fritz of the Homicide Bureau had a suspect in custody. Sorrels left Zapruder there and hurried to Captain Fritz’ office – sirens blaring. This was urgent news to Forrest Sorrels, because (in my opinion) Sorrels knew that LHO was supposed to be killed in the streets of Dallas, having already been amply framed in New Orleans. Yet with LHO now in custody, something had gone very wrong. Sorrels rushed in to take control.
There were countless news cameras and reporters in the hall along with countless Dallas officers. Captain Fritz was in a closed-door meeting with the LHO and the FBI.
Fritz allowed Sorrels to question LHO very quickly.
LHO was allegedly agitated: “What am I charged with? Isn’t someone supposed to tell me my rights?” This is a predictable report. We lack all genuine knowledge about what LHO said in custody – we are given only predictable trifles by these Dallas officials. They had time to coordinate their reports and provide them months after the actual events.
Sorrels allegedly said, “Your rights are the same as any American citizen. You have the right to silence and to an attorney. You may telephone anybody you want. A predictable claim.
Sorrels allegedly asked LHO where he worked. LHO allegedly said he worked at the TSBD.
Sorrels allegedly asked LHO for his duties at the TSBD. LHO allegedly said, filling orders.
Sorrels allegedly asked LHO for his address. LHO allegedly said that he lived in a room and his wife lived in Irving.
Sorrels allegedly asked LHO if he was on the TSBD 6th floor. LHO allegedly said, yes, all floors; mostly the 1st floor.
Sorrels allegedly asked LHO if he’d ever been in a foreign country. LHO allegedly said “Europe; mostly the USSR; and I will answer no more questions.” So, the interview was over.
In my reading, all these questions and answers are trifles. They conceal rather than reveal the truth of the hours of conversations between Dallas officials and LHO that Friday.
6. At that point, police put LHO back in jail.
7. Captain Fritz told Sorrels that he had not yet got anything out of LHO. Of course, that is what Sorrels (and Fritz and Hosty) had to say, because what LHO really said, if anything, had to be a lifetime secret. The “Communist plot” story of the JFK murder depended on a dead LHO, but LHO outdrew Tippit. Also, LHO could expose the Radical Right from New Orleans to Dallas, if allowed to talk. So, Fritz, Hosty and Sorrels had to keep LHO quiet, calm and always believing that his accomplices would, “come forward and give him legal assistance.”
8. Sorrels did not speak with LHO again that night.
9. The SS in Washington DC told Sorrels that Inspector Kelley was coming to Dallas.
10. Sorrels told Captain Fritz about Brennan and asked for a line-up of LHO for him. Fritz said OK.
11. Brennan arrived hours later, and after the line-up, he apologized and said he couldn’t identify LHO after all. He remembered that the shooter he saw looked older than LHO.
12. At this point, the WC asked Sorrels if he knew Dallas FBI agent James Hosty. Yes, said Sorrels, but he also denied speaking with Sorrels that entire weekend. That is plausible, because in my opinion, Sorrels and Hosty had plotted with the Dallas Radical Right since September 1963 and had rehearsed every scenario. They didn’t need to talk that weekend. In fact, any meeting between them that weekend would have looked suspicious. Sorrels knew that. In my opinion, the coordination between Hosty and Sorrels was the linchpin of the JFK Assassination plot. It had to be secret.
13. Sorrels said he remembered seeing Hosty at a distance one time that weekend. I believe it.
14. Sorrels remembered that SS agent Patterson said that Hosty told him that he had a file on LHO. This was clearly a reference to the scandal started by DPD Lieutenant Jack Revill, who claimed that Hosty admitted to him on the afternoon of the JFK Assassination that the FBI had long been tracking LHO, and even knew he was dangerous, but had failed to report LHO to anybody assigned to protect JFK. Lots of people in the DPD knew Revill’s story – including Chief Curry.
15. There was a persistent rumor in the DPD that Dallas FBI agent James Hosty had been checking on LHO for months and had known that LHO worked in the TSBD.
16. Sorrels saw no sign of force, coercion or intimidation of LHO by anyone at the DPD. I accept this. In my opinion, Captain Fritz kept LHO calm. When world reporters interviewed LHO on live TV for a few seconds, he was calm. LHO did not know at that moment that Fritz would soon charge him with the murder of JFK. Perhaps LHO expected to be exonerated for shooting JD Tippit, on grounds of self-defense – Tippit had drawn first. Captain Fritz evidently led LHO led to believe that his accomplices would “come forward and give him legal assistance.” Although many have claimed that the DPD bumbled their way through the JFK Assassination, writer Walt Brown claims that, despite a few errors, the DPD executed their plot brilliantly.
Part 8: INTERVIEWING LHO ON SATURDAY – NOVEMBER 23
On Saturday morning, November 23rd, Sorrels sat in on Fritz’s next interview of LHO. I agree.
LHO asked for a lawyer named Abt. Fritz gave LHO a phone to call Abt; and Sorrels heard later that LHO had tried. Ruth Paine’s WC testimony confirms that LHO called her and “ordered” her to contact Attorney Abt for him. Ruth Paine thought LHO’s attitude was bizarre for the deadly trouble he was in; yet out of sympathy for Marina, Ruth tried several times to contact Attorney Abt. Abt, however, was on vacation in the mountains and had no telephone. We should ask, why Abt? LHO never mentioned Abt before in any writings or conversations that we know about. Abt came out of nowhere. In my opinion, Captain Fritz recommended Abt to LHO, on instructions from General Walker. The JBS tracked every high-profile Communist sympathizer in America. Linking LHO with Abt was another way to link LHO with Communists. Also, in General Walker’s second interview with German newspaper, Deutsche Soldaten-Zeitung on this same day, he told that newspaper that LHO had tried to contact Attorney Abt, “A New York Jew who defends all the Communists.” How would General Walker know LHO tried to contact Abt? Only by an inside connection with the DPD – yet I say the connection flowed from Walker as the leader.
LHO said if he could not get Abt, then he wanted a lawyer from the ACLU. General Walker had also suspected Michael Paine and Ruth Paine of Communism – and both were members of the ACLU. Walker would cover all his bases.
Captain Fritz had learned from the Dallas Post Office that LHO had purchased the murder rifle from Kleins in Chicago, shipped to Alek Hidell. LHO denied everything (as expected). Presuming that this paper trail is genuine, I claim it as evidence that the Dallas Radical Right had included Dallas Postal Inspector Harry Holmes as early as March 1963. Hosty would have been his contact in this Commie-tracking – as guided by Robert Alan Surrey and General Walker.
Sorrels got the impression that LHO had merely been baiting Captain Fritz to make him angry; to slip him up in some way. In my opinion, this is fabrication on the part of Fritz-Hosty-Sorrels, to assign some motive of hostility to LHO. LHO’s calm demeanor in his first TV appearance on Friday midnight, shows us that Fritz had reassured LHO that all would be well. It was only after this TV interview, when LHO was led back to his cell, and heard more and more from reporters in the hallways, that he became alarmed, realized, and exclaimed, “I’m just a Patsy!”
Part 9: INTERVIEWING LHO ON SUNDAY – NOVEMBER 24
On Sunday morning, November 24th, according to Sorrels, LHO was more easy-going in his attitude toward Captain Fritz. That is useless trivia.
The newspapers had been told that LHO would be moved at 10 AM, so they were crowding around the DPD parking garage. Chief Curry’s main problem at this point was how to kill LHO at City Hall. His policemen had prevailed upon local Dallas pimp, Jack Ruby, to kill LHO, promising him a light sentence, and possible hero-worship in Dallas and America. There was no way to avoid the worldwide press given their massive presence at the Dallas Police station. Curry and Fritz carefully coordinated the exact place and time where and when Jack Ruby would appear.
Sorrels told Captain Fritz not to move LHO at an announced time, but at 3 or 4 in the morning, “when nobody is around.” Fritz replied, “The Chief goes along with the Press and TV people.” Jason Ward was correct to recognize that only amateur hit-men operate in front of movie cameras. Also, Sorrels knew very well what Chief Curry was going through. LHO had to be killed before he could talk. Everything that LHO had said in private to Fritz, Holmes, Hosty and Sorrels would forever remain secret. These four would fabricate some Hollywood version of LHO’s words. This myth that Chief Curry was a weakling was just another fabrication. Curry, Decker, Fritz, Holmes, Hosty and Sorrels walked in lockstep all weekend.
Still, after 11 AM, Captain Fritz retained LHO. In my opinion, the main task of Captain Fritz was to ensure that LHO kept a Stoic and confident silence while walking through the parking basement of City Hall. Fritz had successfully assured LHO that he was on his way to County Jail – and that his accomplices would “come forward and give him legal assistance.”
Chief Curry kept coming around, asking how long Captain Fritz was going to be. Curry was understandably nervous.
Captain Fritz told Chief Curry, “We’ll be through in a few minutes.”
Fritz told Sorrels, “As long as LHO might talk, I hesitate to quit.” This was a fabrication. It is more likely that Captain Fritz had to calm LHO hour after hour, because LHO was finally aware that he was officially charged with killing JFK; and was now a possible Patsy for the JFK Assassination. Very likely LHO was ready to tell the world the full truth about his life story. Fritz had to convince LHO to keep silent until the most opportune hour. Under the circumstances, Fritz succeeded brilliantly, in my opinion.
Postal Inspector Harry Holmes brought a New Orleans change-of-address card that LHO had filled out in his own handwriting and signature, and one of the receiver names was A. Hidell. While it is true that Harry Holmes was invited to LHO’s final interrogation in the office of Captain Fritz – LHO’s change-of-address card was not the reason he was there. Holmes was eager to be a part of Dallas history. As his WC testimony showed, he was a little too eager.
Sorrels pressed this issue with LHO – here was positive proof! Still LHO denied everything. That was the last SS interview question that LHO was ever asked. This is another fabrication. The myth that LHO simply denied everything is the simplest way to fill in all the hours of interrogation. He denied this. He denied that. He denied the other. All trifles.
LHO was told he was going to county jail, and he asked for a clean shirt. Yes, of course.
Captain Fritz provided a selection, and LHO selected a dark colored sweater. This fact incidentally shows how WC witnesses Pamela Mumford and Patricia Winston reported a mistaken identity. They both admitted that they could not identify the face of LHO, but this same dark grey sweater convinced them that the passenger on the Mexico City bus back in September really was LHO – because “he wore that same sweater on the bus!”
Then LHO was led down to the DPD parking garage.
Part 10: MURDER OF LHO IN POLICE CUSTODY – NOVEMBER 24
Sorrels and Inspector Kelley and went to visit the offices of Deputy Chief Batchelor.
After a few minutes they moved to Chief Curry’s reception area, and around 11:21 AM a DPD officer rushed in to report that LHO had just been shot in the parking garage by Jack Ruby.
Sorrels and Inspector Kelley ran down to the parking garage. LHO was still on the floor when they arrived. Somebody was administering CPR to LHO – for a gunshot wound?
Sorrels immediately called SS in Washington DC to tell them. They asked for more details ASAP. It was now about 11:25 AM. Sorrels knew finally that the Dallas plot had worked like clockwork.
Sorrels rushed back upstairs to Homicide, to talk to Jack Ruby as fast as possible. The faster the press could be diverted to Jack Ruby’s case the better for the Dallas plotters.
Police escorted Sorrels to the jail cell of Jack Ruby, there on the 5th floor of the DPD. Sorrels knew very well that Jack Ruby was harmless, because he knew so little. Jack Ruby had been convinced at the last minute by his Dallas Police friends to hit LHO. That’s all Ruby knew. Nor would he ever tell that truth to the press – he knew better.
In my opinion, Chief Curry, Sheriff Decker, Harry Holmes, James Hosty, Forrest Sorrels and their many accomplices in Dallas kept a deep, dark secret for the rest of their lives. They knew that they had killed JFK and blamed LHO as the killer. They would never crack.
In one sense, it was a success, because nobody was caught and brought to justice. In another sense, however, it was a miserable failure, because the Dallas Radical Right wanted first and foremost to blame the Communists for the JFK Assassination. If they could have blamed the Communists, then they could have also convinced the US Government to invade Cuba and depose Fidel Castro. This was their highest goal. They failed.
Instead, J. Edgar Hoover, recognizing the full truth of the Dallas plot within hours of the JFK Assassination, chose to blame LHO alone. That mostly silenced the Left, but it also clipped the wings of the US Radical Right for a long time.