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Warren Commission Report: Page 128« Previous | Next »

(CHAPTER IV - The Assassin)

By checking the actual mailing dates of these issues and the time usually takes to effect. delivery to Dallas, it was established that the photographs must have been taken sometime after March 27.97 Marina Oswald testified that the photographs were taken on a Sunday about 2 weeks before the attempted shooting of Maj. Gen. Edwin A. Walker on April 10, 1968.98 By Sunday, March 31, 1963, 10 days prior to the Walker attempt, Oswald had undoubtedly received the rifle shipped from Chicago on March 20, the revolver shipped from Los Angeles on the same date,99 and the two newspapers which he was holding in the picture.

Rifle Among Oswald's Possessions

Marina Oswald testified that the rifle found on the sixth floor of the Depository Building was the "fateful rifle of Lee Oswald." Moreover, it was the only rifle owned by her husband following his return from the Soviet Union in June 1962.101 It had been purchased in March 1963, and taken to New Orleans where Marina Oswald saw it in their rented apartment during the summer' of 1963.102 It appears from his wife's testimony that. Oswald may have sat on the screened-in porch at night practicing with the rifle by looking through the telescopic sight and operating the bolt.103 In September 1963, Oswald loaded their possessions into a station wagon owned by Ruth Paine, who had invited Marina Oswald and the baby to live at her home in Irving,104 Tex. Marina. Oswald has stated that the rifle was among these possessions,105 although Ruth Paine testified that she was not aware of it.106


From September 24, 1963, when Marina Oswald arrived in Irving from New Orleans, until the morning of the assassination, the rifle was, according to the evidence, stored in a green and brown blanket in the Paines' garage among the Oswalds' other possessions.107 About 1 week after the return from New Orleans, Marina Oswald was looking in the garage for parts to the baby's crib and thought that the parts might be in the blanket. When she started to open the blanket, she saw the stock of the rifle.108 Ruth and Michael Paine both noticed the rolled-up blanket in the garage during the time that Marina Oswald was living in their home.109 On several occasions, Michael Paine moved the blanket in the garage.110 He thought it contained tent poles, or possibly other camping equipment such as a folding shovel.111 When he appeared before the Commission, Michael Paine lifted the blanket with the rifle wrapped inside and testified that it appeared to be the same approximate weight and shape as the package in his garage.112


About 3 hours after the assassination, a detective and deputy sheriff saw the blanket-roll, tied with a string, lying on the floor of the Paines' garage. Each man testified that he thought he could detect the outline of a rifle in the blanket, even though the blanket was empty.113 Paul M. Stombaugh, of the FBI Laboratory, examined the blanket and discovered a bulge approximately 10 inches long midway in the blanket. This bulge was apparently caused by a hard protruding

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