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  » Appendix VI
  » Appendix VII
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  » Appendix IX
  » Appendix X
  » Appendix XI
  » Appendix XII
  » Appendix XIII
  » Appendix XIV
  » Appendix XV
  » Appendix XVI
  » Appendix XVII
  » Appendix XVIII
Warren Commission Report: Page 645« Previous | Next »

(APPENDIX XII - Speculations and Rumors)

veal any person in Dallas or New Orleans by that name. It was merely a creation for his own purposes.26

Speculation.--The President's car was going at a speed estimated at from 12 to 20 miles per hour, thus presenting a target comparable to the most difficult that a soldier would encounter under battlefield conditions.

* Commission finding.--During the period between the time that the first and second shots struck the President, the Presidential car was traveling at an avenge speed of approximately 11.2 miles per hour. Expert witnesses testified that the target is regarded as a favorable one because the car was going away from the marksman in a straight line. 27

Speculation.--Oswald could not have fired three shots from the Mannlicher-Carcano rifle in 5.5 seconds.

Commission finding.--According to expert witnesses, exacting tests conducted for the Commission demonstrated that it was possible to fire three shots from the rifle within 5.5 seconds. It should be noted that the first loaded shell was already in the chamber ready for firing; Oswald had only to pull the trigger to fire the first shot and to work the bolt twice in order to fire the second and third shots. They testified that if the second shot missed, Oswald had between 4.8 and 5.6 seconds to fire the three shots. If either the first or third shot missed, Oswald had in excess of 7 seconds to fire the three shots. 28

Speculation.--Oswald did not have the marksmanship ability demonstrated by the rifleman who fired the shots.

Commission finding.--Oswald qualified as a sharpshooter and a marksman with the M-1 rifle in the Marine Corps. Marina Oswald testified that in New Orleans her husband practiced operating the belt of the rifle. Moreover, experts stated that the scope was a substantial aid for rapid, accurate firing. The Commission concluded that Oswald had the capability with a rifle to commit assassination.29

Speculation.--The name of the rifle used in the assassination appeared on the rifle. Therefore, the searchers who found the rifle on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository should have been able to identify it correctly by name.

Commission finding.--An examination of the rifle does not reveal any manufacturer's name. An inscription on the rifle shows that it was made in Italy. The rifle was identified by Captain Fritz and Lieutenant Day, who were the first to actually handle it.30

Speculation.--The rifle found on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository was identified as a 7.65 Mauser by the man who found it, Deputy Constable Seymour Weitzman.

Commission finding.--Weitzman, the original source of the speculation that the rifle was a Mauser, and Deputy Sheriff Eugene Boone found the weapon. Weitzman did not handle the rifle and did not examine it at close range. He had little more than a glimpse of it and thought it was a Mauser, a German bolt-type rifle similar in appearance to the Mannlicher-Carcano. Police laboratory technicians

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