Barbara Davis' 1964 Testimony

Barbara Davis' 11/22/63 Affidavit


22-year-old Barbara Jeanette Davis is a key witness to one of the two
murders committed by Lee Harvey Oswald on November 22, 1963. Mrs.
Davis (along with her 16-year-old sister-in-law, Virginia Davis) witnessed
the aftermath of police officer J.D. Tippit's murder approximately 45
minutes after President Kennedy had been shot just a few miles away in
Dealey Plaza.

The Davis ladies lived in an apartment house located on the corner of
10th Street and Patton Avenue in the Dallas suburb of Oak Cliff. Each
of the Davises testified pretty much the same way regarding the things
each of them saw take place after hearing gunshots from just outside
their apartment building.

Each of the Davis ladies later positively identified Lee Harvey Oswald
as the man they saw "unloading a gun" as he crossed their yard at the
corner of Tenth & Patton.

Here are some excerpts from Barbara Davis' 1964 Warren Commission


JOSEPH BALL. On that day did something unusual happen that you
observed, on November 22nd?

BARBARA J. DAVIS. Those gunshots.

Mr. BALL. Gunshots? Where were you when you heard gunshots?

Mrs. DAVIS. In bed.

ALLEN DULLES. Did you say gunshot or gunshots?

Mrs. DAVIS. Shots.

Mr. DULLES. Plural? How many did you hear?

Mrs. DAVIS. Just two, they were pretty close together.

Mr. BALL. You were lying on the bed. What did you do?

Mrs. DAVIS. I got up, put my shoes on to see what it was.

Mr. BALL. Did you ever go outdoors?

Mrs. DAVIS. At first, I didn't.

Mr. BALL. When you went to the door, did you open the door?

Mrs. DAVIS. I opened the door and held the screen opened.

Mr. BALL. What did you see?

Mrs. DAVIS. Mrs. Markham standing across the street over there, and
she was standing over there and the man was coming across the yard.

Mr. BALL. A man was coming across what yard?

Mrs. DAVIS. My yard.

Mr. BALL. And what did you see the man doing?

Mrs. DAVIS. Well, first off she [Markham] went to screaming before I
had paid too much attention to him, and pointing at him, and he was,
what I thought, was emptying the gun.

Mr. BALL. He had a gun in his hand?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. And he was emptying it?

Mrs. DAVIS. It was open and he had his hands cocked like he was
emptying it.


GERALD R. FORD. You saw him take the shells out of the gun?

Mrs. DAVIS. No, sir; he was shaking them.

Mr. FORD. He was shaking them?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was shaking them. I didn't see him actually use his
hand to take them out. I mean he was sort of shaking them out.

[DVP: The remarks from both Barbara Davis (above) and also from
Virginia Davis completely destroy the notion advanced by many
conspiracy theorists that Tippit's murderer used an "automatic" weapon
to kill the officer.

If an automatic gun had really been the murder weapon, there would
have been no need for the gunman to physically open the gun and dump
the empty cartridges out of it.

Furthermore, if an automatic had been used to kill Tippit, any
expended bullet shells would have been found much closer to Tippit's
police car, which was located many yards away from the Davis apartment building.

Do CTers think that Tippit was killed by a person using an automatic,
and then the killer (or somebody) picked up the AUTOMATICALLY EJECTED CARTRIDGES and dumped them in the Davises' yard? (Weird theory there.)]


Mr. BALL. What did you do next?

Mrs. DAVIS. He looked at her [Markham] first and looked at me and then
smiled and went around the corner.

Mr. BALL. Was he running or walking?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was walking at his normal pace.

Mr. BALL. And he went around the corner? Did he go on the sidewalk?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes. He was on the sidewalk right beside the house.

Mr. BALL. Did he cut across your lawn at all?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. Where?

Mrs. DAVIS. He cut across the middle of the yard.


Mr. BALL. Were you shown a group of people in the police station and
asked if you could identify the man?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes. ....

Mr. BALL. How many men were shown to you in this lineup?

Mrs. DAVIS. Four.

Mr. BALL. Were they of the same size or of different sizes?

Mrs. DAVIS. Most of them was about the same size.

Mr. BALL. All white men, were they?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. Did you recognize anyone in that room?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes, sir. I recognized number 2.

Mr. BALL. Number 2 you recognized? Did you tell any policeman there
anything after you recognized them?

Mrs. DAVIS. I told the man who had brought us down there.

Mr. BALL. What did you tell him?

Mrs. DAVIS. That I thought number 2 was the man that I saw. ....

Mr. BALL. By number 2, was the man you saw the man you saw doing what?

Mrs. DAVIS. Unloading the gun.

Mr. BALL. And going across your yard?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. That was about what time of day that you were at the lineup?

Mrs. DAVIS. It was after 8, I am sure.

Mr. BALL. After when?

Mrs. DAVIS. After 8 o'clock.

Mr. BALL. On what day?

Mrs. DAVIS. On Friday, the same day.

Mr. BALL. The same day? It was after 8 o'clock on Friday, the same day
that you had seen the man unloading the gun?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes, sir.


Mr. BALL. Let's go back to that afternoon [November 22, 1963], and you
give your best memory of what the man looked like. Don't think of what
anybody has told you or what has happened in between. Try to remember
the vision you had of that man--the color of his hair, the size of his
build and so forth.

Mrs. DAVIS. You mean weight and like that?

Mr. BALL. He was white, wasn't he?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Light complexioned, or dark?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was more light complected than he would have been dark.

Mr. BALL. Color of his hair?

Mrs. DAVIS. It was either dark brown or black. It was just dark hair.

Mr. BALL. And the color of his clothes?

Mrs. DAVIS. Well, I said he had on--he looked to me that he had on
dark trousers, and it looked like a light-colored shirt, with a dark
coat over it.

Mr. BALL. About what age would you say the man was?

Mrs. DAVIS. I am not very good on that. I don't know. I would say he
was about 23, 24.

Mr. BALL. And what about his weight and height? .... You have to be
general, I know that.

Mr. DULLES. Just your best recollection. If you haven't any, just tell

Mrs. DAVIS. I just don't know.

Mr. BALL. Was he fat or slender?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was slender built, and not very heavy.

Mr. BALL. Was he a tall man, or a real short man, or average?

Mrs. DAVIS. Oh, he wasn't especially tall. I would say he was about
medium height or a little taller. I mean he wasn't extra tall.

Mr. BALL. Now, did you have some difficulty in identifying this No. 2
man in the showup when you saw him?

Mrs. DAVIS. Well, they made us look at him a long time before they let
us say anything.

Mr. BALL. What about you? I am not talking about what you told them.
What was your reaction when you saw this man?

Mrs. DAVIS. Well, I was pretty sure it was the same man I saw. When
they made him turn sideways, I was positive that was the one I seen.

[DVP: The "Number 2" man in the police lineup was, of course, Lee
Harvey Oswald.]


Mr. BALL. Where was he when you saw him emptying his gun?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was right here on the other side of this bush. ....

Mr. DULLES. Did you know at the time he was emptying his gun?

Mrs. DAVIS. That is what I presumed, because he had it open and was
shaking it. ....

Mr. BALL. After the man left, what did you do, after he went out of
sight what did you do?

Mrs. DAVIS. I went back in and phoned the police.

Mr. BALL. Then what did you tell the police?

Mrs. DAVIS. I just told them that a policeman had been shot.

Mr. BALL. Then what did you do?

Mrs. DAVIS. I came back outside and walked down to where the
policeman's car was out.

Mr. BALL. Did you see the policeman?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. Where was he?

Mrs. DAVIS. He was laying on the left-hand side of the car on the
ground, by the left-hand fender.

Mr. BALL. Was he alive or what?

Mrs. DAVIS. I don't know.

Mr. BALL. Did he talk?

Mrs. DAVIS. No.

Mr. BALL. You didn't know whether he was alive or dead?

Mrs. DAVIS. No, sir; I didn't get that close.

Mr. BALL. How long did you stay there?

Mrs. DAVIS. Not 5 minutes, I would imagine, because the police cars
started coming, so I went back to my yard. ....

Mr. BALL. Did you later look in the bushes and find something?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes; in the grass beside the house.

Mr. BALL. The grass beside the house. What did you find?

Mrs. DAVIS. We found one shell.

Mr. BALL. One shell?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. And your sister-in-law, did your sister-in-law find
something else?

Mrs. DAVIS. She found one later in the afternoon.

Mr. BALL. One, later?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Can you show me on one of these pictures here where you
found one shell?

Mrs. DAVIS. Under the window here. That would be the only one I could

Mr. BALL. The only one that shows, it is photo 3, it is Commission Exhibit 534.
Draw an arrow down.

Mrs. DAVIS. Right under that window there.

Mr. BALL. Under that window. The arrow which is marked "D-1" shows the
position where you found one shell. Did you see your sister-in- law
find the other shell?

Mrs. DAVIS. Yes.

Mr. BALL. Where was that found?

Mrs. DAVIS. There is a little cement walk right here by her door, it
was right there, not too far from there.

Mr. BALL. Could you draw an arrow down to show the approximate

Mrs. DAVIS. It was almost in front of her door, there is a little
cement porch to step up to her door.

[DVP: So, as we can see from this testimony, EACH of the two Davis
ladies found one shell after the shooting....with each of these two
shells being ballistically linked to the gun that was in the possession of Lee Harvey Oswald when he was apprehended in the Texas Theater about 35 minutes after Officer Tippit was slain.

In addition to the Davises, one other witness (Domingo Benavides)
found two additional bullet shells near the front yard of the Davis
residence very shortly after the shooting. Those two shells were also
linked "to the exclusion of all other weapons" to Lee Oswald's Smith &
Wesson .38 revolver -- the same gun he tried to use on more policemen
within the theater.

So that makes THREE different civilians who initially picked up bullet
shells near the corner of Tenth & Patton on November 22nd. And all
four of those shells matched Oswald's gun.

Even if some conspiracists want to argue the "chain of possession" of
the two shells found by Benavides (as CTers often do argue, due to a
discrepancy regarding the marking of those shells by DPD Officer J.M.
Poe)....what possible argument can those same CTers use to combat the
rock-solid chain of custody with respect to the two shells discovered
by Barbara and Virginia Davis?

As far as I know, no conspiracy theorists have ever claimed that BOTH
of the Davis shells are "tainted" in some fashion. And if those are
really shells that came out of Oswald's gun on 11/22/63, then Lee
Harvey Oswald is guilty of murdering J.D. Tippit beyond all doubt.

And since the overwhelming evidence indicates that there was ONLY ONE PERSON WITH A GUN shooting anybody on Tenth Street on November 22, and since that ONE PERSON with a gun dumped bullet shells from the ONE AND ONLY GUN that was used to commit the murder of Officer stands to reason (when just a small amount of common sense is applied) that ALL FOUR BULLET SHELLS that were found by the three different witnesses on 10th Street ALL CAME OUT OF THE VERY SAME GUN.

And since there's no dispute whatsoever about the two shells found by
the Davis girls--those shells positively came from Oswald's gun--this
has to mean, logically, that the other two shells found by Benavides
MUST have come out of the very same gun as well.

And since the ONLY PERSON WITH A GUN on 10th Street was positively
identified as Lee Harvey Oswald by many different witnesses after the
murder, including Barbara Davis and Virginia Davis (who both came
within just a few feet of Tippit's killer on November 22), there can't
be much doubt about the following conclusion:

Lee Harvey Oswald, by himself, killed Officer J.D. Tippit with Lee
Harvey Oswald's very own gun.]

David Von Pein
March 2008