Saturday, January 5, 2013

Julia Ann Mercer - her real testimony. Proof of conspiracy.

Some of the best witnesses to the assassination found their way to us after it became apparent to them that the federal agents and the Dallas police really were not interested in what they saw. Julia Ann Mercer was just such a witness. In fact, no other witness so completely illuminated for me the extent of the cover-up.

Mercer had been but a few feet away when one of the riflemen was unloaded at the grassy knoll shortly before the arrival of the presidential motorcade. Consequently, she was a witness not only to the preparation of President Kennedy's murder but also to the conspiracy involved.

She gave statements to the FBI and the Dallas Sheriff's office, and then returned to the FBI and provided additional statements, but she was never called by the Warren Commission—not even to provide an affidavit.

Much earlier, I had read Julia Ann Mercer's statements in the Warren Commission exhibits, but I had never had a chance to talk to her. Then one day in early 1968 her husband called me at the office. He said that he and his wife were in New Orleans on business and had some things to tell me. I agreed to meet them at the Fairmont Hotel, where they were staying.

Arriving at their suite, I found a most impressive couple. A middle-aged man of obvious substance, he had been a Republican member of Congress from Illinois.

Equally impressive, she was intelligent and well-dressed, the kind of witness any lawyer would love to have testifying on his side in front of a jury. After he had departed on business, I handed her copies of her statements as they had been printed in the Warren Commission exhibits. She read them carefully and then shook her head.

"These all have been altered," she said. "They have me saying just the opposite of what I really told them."

About an hour before the assassination she had been driving west on Elm Street and had been stopped—just past the grassy knoll—by traffic congestion. To her surprise (because she recalled that the President's parade was coming soon), she saw a young man in the pickup truck to her right dismount, carrying a rifle, not too well concealed in a covering of some sort. She then observed him walk up "the grassy hill which forms part of the overpass." She looked at the driver several times, got a good look at his round face and brown eyes, and he looked right back at her.

Mercer also observed that three police officers were standing near a motorcycle on the overpass bridge above her and just ahead. She recalled that they showed no curiosity about the young man climbing the side of the grassy knoll with the rifle.

After the assassination, when Mercer sought to make this information available to law enforcement authorities, their response was almost frenzied. At the FBI office—where she went the day after the assassination—she was shown a number of mug shots. Among the several she selected as resembling the driver was a photograph of Jack Ruby. On Sunday, when she saw Ruby kill Oswald on television, she positively recognized him as the driver of the pickup truck and promptly notified the local Bureau office. Nevertheless, the FBI altered her statement so it did not note that she had made a positive identification.

She laughed when she pointed this out to me. "See," she said, "the FBI made it just the opposite of what I really told them." Then she added, "He was only a few feet away from me. How could I not recognize Jack Ruby when I saw him shoot Oswald on television?"
The Dallas Sheriff’s office went through the same laborious fraud and added an imaginative touch of its own. Although Mercer had never been brought before any notary, the Sheriff's office filed a sworn affidavit stating that she did not identify the driver, although she might, "if I see him again," and significantly changing other facts.

"See that notarized signature?" she asked me. "That's not my signature either. I sign my name with a big ‘A’ like this." She produced a pen and wrote her name for me. It was clear that the signature the Dallas Sheriff’s office had on its altered statement was not even close to hers.

Julia Ann Mercer then wrote on the side of my copies of the FBI and the Dallas Sheriff fabrications the correct version of what she had seen then. That version had not been acceptable in Dallas, but it was more than welcome to me. Conscious of the sudden deaths of some witnesses who appeared to have seen too much for their own survival, I thought that she should sign her maiden name as she had back in Dallas right after the assassination. At my suggestion she did so.

When I got back to my office, I thought about Julia Ann Mercer. She had been only a few feet away from one of the most crucial incidents of the assassination and had tried in vain to tell the federal and Dallas law enforcement authorities the simple truth. The implications of her experience were profound. First of all, Mercer's observations provided further evidence that there was another rifleman on the knoll ahead of the President.

But to me the responses to her statements were even more chilling. They proved that law enforcement officials recognized early on that a conspiracy existed to kill the President. Both local and federal authorities had altered Mercer's statements precisely to conceal that fact.

I already had concluded that parts of the local Dallas law enforcement establishment were probably implicated in the assassination or its cover-up. But now I saw that the highly respected FBI was implicated as well. After all, the Bureau had to have known on Saturday, November 23, when it showed Jack Ruby's photo to Mercer, that Ruby might have been involved in a conspiracy. This was the day before Ruby shot Oswald.

(Jim Garrison, On the Trail of the Assassins, pp. 251 - 254)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...