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Warren Commission Report: Page 557« Previous | Next »

(APPENDIX X - Expert Testimony)

wall and a high stack of boxes which ran parallel to the wall. 32 The cartridge cases were a short distance to the west of the southeast corner window in that wall. 33 Based on a comparison with test cartridge cases fired from the C2766 rifle, the three cartridge cases were identified as having been fired from the C2766 rifle.34 ( See Commission Exhibit No. 558, p. 556.) A test was run to determine if the cartridge-case-ejection pattern of the rifle was consistent with the assumption that the assassin had fired from the southeast window. 35 In this test., 11 cartridges were fired from the rifle while it was depressed 45° downward, and 8 cartridges were fired from the rifle while it was held horizontally. The elevation of the ejected cartridge cases above the level of the ejection port, and the points on the floor at which the ejection cartridge cases initially landed, were then plotted. The results of these tests are illustrated by the diagrams, Commission Exhibits Nos. 546 and 547. Briefly, Commission Exhibit No. 547 shows that with the weapon depressed at a 45° angle, the cartridge cases did not rise more than 2 inches above the ejection port; with the weapon held horizontally, they did not rise more than 12 inches above the ejection port. 36 Commission Exhibit/So. 546 shows that if a circle was drawn around the initial landing points of the cartridge cases which were ejected in the test while the rifle was held depressed at 45°, the center of the circle would be located 86 inches and 80° to the right of the rifle's line of sight; if a circle was drawn around the initial landing points of the cartridge cases ejected while the rifle was held horizontally, the center of the circle would be 80 inches and 90° to the right of the line of sight. In other words, the cartridge cases were ejected to the right of and at roughly a right angle to the rifle. 37 The cartridge cases showed considerable ricochet after their initial landing, bouncing from 8 inches to 15 feet. 38 The location of the cartridge cases was therefore consistent with the southeast window having been used by the assassin, since if the assassin fired from that window the ejected cartridge cases would have hit the pile of boxes at his back and ricocheted between the boxes and the wall until they came to rest to the west of the window.39

The Rifle Bullets

In addition to the three cartridge cases found in the Texas School Book Depository Building, a nearly whole bullet was found on Governor Connally's stretcher and two bullet fragments were found in the front of the President's car. 40 The stretcher bullet weighed 158.6 grains, or several grains less than the average Western Cartridge Co. 6.5-millimeter Mannlicher-Carcano bullet.41 It was slightly flattened, but otherwise unmutilated. 42 The two bullet fragments weighed 44.6 and 21.0 grains, respectively. 43 The heavier fragment was a portion of a bullet's nose area, as shown by its rounded contour and the
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