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  » Letter of Transmittal
  » Foreword
  » Chapter 1
  » Chapter 2
  » Chapter 3
  » Chapter 4
  » Chapter 5
  » Chapter 6
  » Chapter 7
  » Chapter 8
  » Appendix I
  » Appendix II
  » Appendix III
  » Appendix IV
  » Appendix V
  » Appendix VI
  » Appendix VII
  » Appendix VIII
  » Appendix IX
  » Appendix X
  » Appendix XI
  » Appendix XII
  » Appendix XIII
  » Appendix XIV
  » Appendix XV
  » Appendix XVI
  » Appendix XVII
  » Appendix XVIII
Warren Commission Report: Page 167« Previous | Next »

(CHAPTER IV - The Assassin)

He testified that the picture of Oswald which he saw later on television bore a resemblance to the man who shot Officer Tippit. 510

Just prior to the shooting, Mrs. Helen Markham, a waitress in downtown Dallas, was about to cross 10th Street at Patton. As she waited on the northwest corner of the intersection for traffic to pass,511 she noticed a young man as be was "almost ready to get up on the curb" 512 at the southeast corner of the intersection, approximately 50 feet away. The man continued along 10th Street. Mrs. Markham saw a police car slowly approach the man from the rear and stop alongside of him. She saw the man come to the right window of the police car. As he talked, he leaned on the ledge of the right window with his arms. The man appeared to step back as the policeman "calmly opened the rear door" and very slowly got out and walked toward the front of the car. The man pulled a gun. Mrs. Markham heard three shots and saw the policeman fall to the ground near the left front wheel. She raised her hands to her eyes as the man started to walk back toward Patton.513 She peered through her fingers, lowered her hands, and saw the man doing something with his gun. "He was just fooling with it. I didn't know what he was doing. I was afraid he was fixing to kill me." 514 The man "in kind of a little trot" headed down Patton toward Jefferson Boulevard, a block away. Mrs. Markham then ran to Officer Tippit's side and saw him lying in a pool of blood? 515

Helen Markham was screaming as she leaned over the body.516 A few minutes later she described the gunman to a policeman?517 Her description and that of other eyewitnesses led to the police broadcast at 1:22 p.m. describing the slayer as "about 30, 5'8", black hair, slender." 518 At about 4:30 p.m., Mrs. Markham, who had been greatly upset by her experience, was able to view a lineup of four men handcuffed together at the police station. 519 .She identified Lee Harvey Oswald as the man who shot the policeman.520 Detective L. C. Graves, who had been with Mrs. Markham before the lineup testified that she was "quite hysterical" and was "crying and upset." 521 He said that Mrs. Markham started crying when Oswald walked into the lineup room. 522 In testimony before the Commission, Mrs. Markham confirmed her positive identification of Lee Harvey Oswald as the man she saw kill Officer Tippit. 523

In evaluating Mrs. Markham's identification of Oswald, the Commission considered certain allegations that Mrs. Markham described the man who killed Patrolman Tippit as "short, a little on the heavy side," and having "somewhat bushy" hair.523 The Commission reviewed the transcript of a phone conversation in which Mrs. Markham is alleged to have provided such a description.525 A review of the complete transcript has satisfied the Commission that Mrs. Markham strongly reaffirmed her positive identification of Oswald and denied having described the killer as short, stocky and having bushy hair. She stated that the man weighed about 150 pounds.526 Although she used the words "a little bit bushy" to describe the gunman's hair, the transcript establishes that she was referring to the uncombed

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