JFK ASSASSINATION ARGUMENTS
(PART 769)


QUESTION:

David....any thoughts on Benevides [sic] interview?


DAVID VON PEIN SAID:

I've seen Domingo Benavides' 1967 interview with Eddie Barker on CBS-TV many times [see video below]. And, yes, a grain of salt needs to be consumed when watching Benavides positively identify Lee Oswald as Officer Tippit's killer 3.5 years after the event.

Benavides goes on to tell Barker and the CBS audience that (as of mid-1967) he has no doubt at all that it was, indeed, Oswald who shot Tippit, with Domingo adding (paraphrasing): "I could even tell you how he combed his hair and if he had a scar. You don't forget things like that."

So, yes, take Benavides' 1967 CBS-TV comments with a grain of salt (a whole barrel of salt if you want to), since the same witness seemed pretty sure that he would not have been able to identify Tippit's killer back in '63.

video

But, at the same time, also keep in mind the OTHER things that Domingo Benavides saw (and did) on November 22, 1963 -- such as: seeing Tippit's killer dump empty bullet shells from his gun as he ran toward the corner of Tenth & Patton (which is shell-ejecting activity that is corroborated by multiple other eyewitnesses).

And the fact that Benavides was fearful that the police would not find those shells, so Domingo himself went to the corner and picked up two of the shells and put them in an empty Winston cigarette package. (Benavides later said on the same 1967 CBS-TV "Warren Report" special that he had picked up three shells, which was an obvious error, because those were the "Poe" shells that conspiracy theorists love to argue about so much, and we know there were only TWO "Poe" shells.)

More of my thoughts about Benavides' 1967 TV comments:

My guess is that Domingo Benavides had convinced himself that Tippit's killer was, in fact, Lee Harvey Oswald, based partly on actually seeing Oswald shoot Tippit, but possibly even more on the fact that he had seen Oswald on TV and in the newspapers many times after November 22.

We must also keep in mind that Benavides told the Warren Commission in 1964 that Tippit's murderer "resembled" Oswald:

DAVID BELIN -- "You used the name Oswald. How did you know this man was Oswald?"

DOMINGO BENAVIDES -- "From the pictures I had seen. It looked like a guy, resembled the guy. That was the reason I figured it was Oswald."


Now, we can argue from now until doomsday about whether Benavides himself actually believed that the man he saw shoot Officer Tippit was really Lee Harvey Oswald.

But I'm not too sure that Benavides' 1967 "positive identification" of Oswald should be entirely overlooked either. It's a bit of a strange situation, in that we have a witness who told the police on 11/22/63 that he didn't think he would be able to make a positive identification of Tippit's killer (which could have simply been a case of Benavides being scared to death at the time, so he hedged on telling the police the full truth about Tippit's slayer), and therefore Benavides was never taken downtown to view any of the police lineups. Maybe Domingo WOULD have picked Oswald out of a lineup in November 1963. But we'll never know whether he would have or not.

But then more than three years later, the same witness confidently tells a CBS-TV audience that he was absolutely positive that Tippit's shooter was Lee Oswald, with Benavides going so far as to say that he could even tell us how Oswald "combed his hair", etc.

So, given the circumstances, it is difficult to know for certain whether Benavides' positive IDing of Oswald in 1967 was derived entirely from Benavides' memory of SEEING OSWALD HIMSELF on 11/22/63, or a combination of seeing the shooter and the later TV/newspaper accounts. Nobody can ever know for sure.

But even without an "official" identification of Oswald by Benavides, there is still ample physical (and witness) evidence to hang Lee Oswald for Tippit's slaying.

As Vincent Bugliosi is likely to say: WHEN YOU'RE CAPTURED WITH THE MURDER WEAPON ON YOU WITHIN 35 MINUTES OF THE SHOOTING, THAT'S THE END OF THE BALLGAME! YOU'RE GUILTY AS SIN!

The above argument being similar in style to Vincent's compelling argument regarding O.J. Simpson's obvious guilt in the 1994 murders of Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman -- "WHEN YOUR BLOOD IS FOUND AT THE MURDER SCENE, THAT'S THE END OF THE BALLGAME! THERE IS NOTHING MORE TO SAY!"




QUESTION:

Will Fritz...was described as master interrogator. .... [D.A. Henry] Wade said to the press...that he did not think Oswald would confess. Strange with all the weight of evidence, and Fritz's reputation that he was certain he woudn't confess. Don't you think?


DAVID VON PEIN SAID:

No, I don't think that's strange at all. That was merely Henry Wade's own personal opinion about Oswald. Nothing more.

I, too, don't think Oswald would have ever confessed. He was going to let the cops and the courts convict him. But he certainly wasn't going to give them any help at all. Ever. (IMO.)

As he told the police shortly after he was arrested (paraphrasing) - "You're the cops. You figure it out."

David Von Pein
November 16, 2009