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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. III - Page 283« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Luke Mooney)

Mr. Mooney.
across Elm Street there--- I assume it is approximately the location the President was hit.
Of course the motorcade was gone. There wasn't anything there except a bunch of people, a lot of them laying on the ground, taking on, various things. I was running at full speed.
Mr. Ball.
When you ran across Elm, where did you go?
Mr. Mooney.
Across Elm, up the embankment, which is a high terrace there, across--there is a kind of concrete building there, more or less of a little park.
Jumped over the fence and went into the railroad yards. And, of course, there was other officers over there. Who they were, I don't recall at this time. But Ralph Walters and I were running together. And we jumped into the railroad yards and began to look around there.
And, of course, we didn't see anything there. Of course the other officers had checked into the car there, and didn't find anything, I don't believe, but a Negro porter. Of course there were quite a few spectators milling around behind us. We were trying to clear the area out and get all the civilians out that wasn't officers.
Mr. Ball.
Why did you go over to the railroad yard?
Mr. Mooney.
Well, that was--from the echo of the shots, we thought they came from that direction.
Mr. Ball.
That would be north and west from where you were standing?
Mr. Mooney.
Yes, sir. To a certain extent--northwest. The way the echo sounded, the cracking of the shot. And we wasn't there many second-- of course I never did look at my watch to see how many seconds it took us to run so many hundred yards there, and into the railroad yard. We were there only a few seconds until we had orders to cover the Texas Depository Building.
Mr. Ball.
How did you get those orders?
Mr. Mooney.
They were referred to us by the sheriff, Mr. Bill Decker.
Mr. Ball.
Where was he when he gave you those orders?
Mr. Mooney.
They were relayed on to us. I assume Mr. Decker was up near the intersection of Elm and Houston.
Mr. Ball.
Did you hear it over a loudspeaker?
Mr. Mooney.
No, sir. It come by word, by another officer.
Mr. Ball.
And you were with Walters at that time?
Mr. Mooney.
Right, And where Officer. Walters went at that time, I don't know. We split up. I didn't see him any more until later on, which I will refer to later.
Mr. Ball.
Where did you go?
Mr. Mooney.
Mr. Webster and Mr. Vickery were there with me at the time that we received these orders from another deputy.
Mr. Ball.
They are deputy sheriffs?
Mr. Mooney.
Yes, sir; they were plainclothes officers like myself, work in the same department, and we run right over to the building then, which we were only 150, 200 feet back--I assume it is that distance I haven't measured it. It didn't take us but a few seconds to get there. When we hit the rear part, these big iron gates, they have cyclone fencing on them--this used to be an old grocery store warehouse--Sachs & Co., I believe is correct. And I says let's get these doors closed to block off this rear entrance.
Mr. Ball.
Were the doors open?
Mr. Mooney.
They were wide open, the big gates. So I grabbed one, and we swung them to, and there was a citizen there, and I put him on orders to keep them shut, because I don't recall whether there was a lock on them or not. Didn't want to lock them because you never know what might happen.
So he stood guard, I assume, until a uniformed officer took over.
We shut the back door--there was a back door on a little dock. And then we went in through the docks, through the rear entrance.
Officer Vickery and Webster said, "We will take the staircase there in the corner.
I said, "I will go up the freight elevator." I noticed there was a big elevator there. So I jumped on it. And about that time two women come running and said, "we want to go to the second floor."
I said, "All right, get on, we are going."
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