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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. XIII - Page 68« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Forrest V. Sorrels)

Mr. Sorrels.
about the assassination, he had canceled his ad and had closed his business, and he had not done any business for 3 days. That he had been grieving about this thing. That on the Friday night he had gone to the synagogue and had heard a eulogy on the President. That his sister had recently been operated on, and that she has been hysterical. That when he saw that Mrs. Kennedy was going to have to appear for the trial, he thought to himself, why should she have to go through this ordeal for this no-good so-and-so.
Mr. Hubert.
Did he use any words or did he say "no-good so-and-so"?
Mr. Sorrels.
He used the word "son-of-a-bitch," as I recall.
Mr. Hubert.
All right.
Mr. S0RRELS. That he had heard about the letter to little Caroline, as I recall he mentioned. That he had been to the Western Union office to send a telegram, and that he guessed he had worked himself into a state of insanity to where he had to do it. And to use his words after that, "I guess I just had to show the world that a Jew has guts."
I, of course, asked him when he was born. He told me in Chicago, March 25, 1911. That he operated the Carousel Club. And also a Vegas Club.
I asked him if anyone else was involved in this thing besides him, and he said that there was not.
I asked him if he knew Oswald before this thing happened, and he said he did not. He said that he had been a labor organizer years ago.
I asked him if he had ever been convicted of any offense or done any time, and he said no felony, that he had a JP release in 1954---in other words, he had been arrested but released by the JP in 1954.
I asked him what his father's name was, and he said his name was Joseph Rubenstein.
I asked him where his father was born, and he said Russia.
I asked him if his mother was living, and he said no, that she was deceased, and that she was born in Poland. That he was of the Jewish faith.
I asked him if he had an attorney, and he said he had Stanley Kaufman, a civil attorney, as his attorney. And I recall, I believe that is about--that about terminated the conversation at that time.
Mr. Hubert.
Did you not ask him why he had the gun with him?
Mr. Sorrels.
Oh, yes; I did.
I asked him why he had that gun, and he said that he carried a gun because of the fact that he carried large quantities of money from his business, or from the club.
Mr. Hubert.
Do you recall whether he made any comment to you or in your hearing regarding the way he got into the basement area where he shot Oswald?
Mr. Sorrels.
At that time, I do not. I do not recall asking him how he got in. I made no notes to that effect.
Mr. Hubert.
Do you remember him saying then anything about that he had intended to shoot Oswald and had formed that intent as early as Friday?
Mr. Sorrels.
No; I did not.
Mr. Hubert.
He did not comment at all about his intent?
Mr. Sorrels.
No; nothing except his response to my question as to "Jack, why?", and then his relating as I have told you there a moment ago. In other words, after I got----
Mr. Hubert.
Did he mention anything about he intended to shoot him three times?
Mr. Sorrels.
No; I did not hear that statement.
Mr. Hubert.
In other words, the only comments that you heard him state which bear upon intent are those you have already made--that is to say, somebody had to do it, and also that he wanted to show the world that a Jew had guts?
Mr. Sorrels.
No; I did not hear him say that somebody had to do it. I heard him say that he guessed he had worked himself into a state of insanity to where he had to do it, felt he had to do it.
Mr. Hubert.
But he did make the report saying he felt he had to show the world that a Jew had guts?
Mr. Sorrels.
Yes; that was very plain.
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