In another bizarretwist to a mystery that has haunted Americans for more thana quarter century, the son of a former Dallas police officerplans to tell the world that his father was one of the assassinsof President John F. Kennedy. Ricky White, a 29-year-old,unemployed oil equipment salesman in Midland, says he”had no conception of ever, ever giving this story out” butdecided to do so after FBI agents began asking questions inMay 1988.
“I’m telling you a story that has touched me, notonly others, and I feel uncomfortable just telling it tostrangers,” White said during a recent interview with theAustin American-Statesman. Monday in Dallas, White isscheduled to show reports material implicating his father,Roscoe Anthony White, in the 1963 assassination. Itsuggests that White, who died in 1971, was a member of anassassination team of three shooters, that he fired two of thethree bullets that killed the president, and that he also killedDallas police officer J. D. Tippit during the manhunt for LeeHarvey Oswald. Among the material: a rifle with telescopicsight that uses the same kind of ammunition as Oswald’s gun;records showing that Oswald and White served together inthe Marines; three faded messages that appear to bedecoded orders to kill someone in Dallas in November1963; and a son’s recollections of his father’s incriminatingdiary – a document that is missing.Order now
The press conference isbeing sponsored by two private groups – the JFKAssassination Information Centre of Dallas and theAssassination Archives and Research Centre of Washington- and some Midland Businessmen. The possibility of RickyWhite’s story being a hoax – a falsehood concocted either byRicky or his father – has not been dismissed by the peopleurging him to publicly talk about the matter. During the last27 years, many private researchers have claimed to havefound evidence of a conspiracy, only to be proved wrong ordeceitful. Bernard Fensterwald, executive director of theAssassination Archives and Research Centre, says if therewas a conspiracy, Ricky White may have the key.
“I thinkit’s our best shot,” he says, “and we better take it. ” J. GaryShaw, co-director of the JFK Assassination InformationCentre, says he hopes White’s story will result in aninvestigation of the assassination by Texas authorities. TwoWashington-based probes – the Warren Commission in1963-64 and the House Select Committee onAssassinations in 1976-78 failed to resolve the enigma of theKennedy shooting, Shaw maintains. As with previousconspiracy theories, White’s story is tantalizing, the evidenceintriguing.
Yet, as with other theories, it raises morequestions than it answers — such as: Who issued the ordersto the so-called assassination team? Why was theassassination ordered against Kennedy? And why is RickyWhite telling this story now? AN OSWALDCONNECTION Using clues discovered in his father’seffects and relying on available government records, RickyWhite says he has determined that Roscoe White and LeeHarvey Oswald probably met in 1957. Ricky White’smother, Geneva, is gravely ill and unable to be interviewed,family members say. According to Military records, bothWhite and Oswald were among a contingent of U. S. Marines, who boarded the USS Bexar in San Diego thatyear for the 22-day trip to Yokosuka, Japan. In its finalreport, the Warren Commission published a photo ofOswald with other Marines in the Philippines.
All but one ofthe Marines was squatting on the ground. Ricky White sayshis father claimed to have been the standing Marine andclaimed to have become acquainted with Oswald in Japanand the Philippines. Military records show that RoscoeWhite took frequent unexplained trips in the Pacific, andRicky White says that his father’s diary described those assecret intelligence assignments. It has been established inprevious investigations that Oswald was discharged in 1959and defected to the Soviet Union.
He returned to the UnitedStates in mid-1962, settling first in Fort Worth with hisRussian-born wife, then moving to Dallas a short time later. Military records show Roscoe White was discharged in late1962, joining his wife and two young sons in Paris, Texas. Ricky White says that shortly thereafter, his father moved thefamily to Dallas and took a job as an insurance salesman. MAN WITH TWO NAMES Ricky White says that twomonths ago he found several faded messages in a militaryweapons canister in the attic of Geneva White’s parentshome in Paris.
Ricky believes the messages to be decodedcables in which Mandarin, a name he says his father wasknown by, was told his next assignment would be “toeliminate a National Security threat to worldwide peace” inHouston, Austin, or Dallas. Another message from the samesource – “C. Bowers” of “Navy Intelligence” – identifiedDallas as the destination and provided White with a list ofcontacts. It stated White had a “place hidden within thedepartment. ” The message was dated September 1963 – thesame month that Geneva White began a brief stint as acocktail hostess at Jack Ruby’s Carousel Club in Dallas.
Ruby fatally shot Oswald two days after the Kennedyassassination. Dallas police records show that on Oct. 7,1963, Roscoe White joined the department as aphotographer and clerk. He did not become a patrol officeruntil 1964. A staff member in the police personneldepartment said recently that White’s file contains no jobreferences. Ricky White says his father’s diary referred toseveral trips made during this period to a remote area in thefoothills near Van Horn, Texas.
There, Roscoe White andseveral others practised shooting at moving targets, RickyWhite says. Although he was younger than 3 years old,Ricky White says he has vague memories of being taken toVan Horn. “My impression was they (others at the VanHorn camp) had been working with my father in themilitary,” Ricky White says, “because they had known eachother well when this took place. ” A FOOTLOCKER ANDDIARY Ricky White says that, after his grandfather died in1982, he was given his father’s footlocker, which had beenstored in the grandfather’s house in Paris. The lockercontained military memorabilia, a Marine uniform, a safedeposit box key and a black leather-bound diary with goldtrim that detailed Roscoe White’s life.
As he and his motherread the diary, Ricky White says they found passages thatimplicated Roscoe White in the Kennedy assassination. “Mymother and I cried together,” he says, “because it hurt verydeeply to learn what I know now. It hurt so much becausethe man I had known couldn’t have fired those shots. It tookthis investigation to be able to learn it’s true.
And my family’sgiven a part of themselves to tell the story. ” From the diaryhe says he learned the significance of the hunting rifle hisfather gave him: a 7. 65mm Mauser with telescopic sight, anArgentine rifle that shoots round-nose, elongated bullets -projectiles that closely resemble those of aMannlicher-Carcano, an Italian rifle that Oswald wasaccused of using. After reading the diary, White says he wasconvinced his father was one of three assassins who fired sixshots from Mauser rifles into the president’s open toplimousine in Dealey Plaza.
Roscoe White shot from behind afence atop a grassy knoll to the right and front of thelimousine, his son says. Two other marksmen were in theTexas School Book Depository and Records buildingsbehind the vehicle. Three shots struck Kennedy; a fourthwounded Texas Gov. John Connally. Ricky White says thetwo shots that his father fired both struck Kennedy: the firstin the throat; the second, and last of the shots fired, in thehead.
Oswald, Ricky White says, knew of the plot, but didnot fire a shot. He had been instructed to bring his rifle to theBook Depository, where he worked, and to build a sniper’snest of book boxes near the sixth floor window, from whichhe was accused of firing all the fatal shots, Ricky White says. Ricky White says the diary referred to the other shootersonly by code names: Sol in the Records building; andLebanon in the Texas School Book Depository. The diaryindicated each of the three riflemen was accompanied by anassistant who disassembled the rifles after the shooting andcarried them out of the area, Ricky White says. Accordingto the diary, Ricky White says, his father was to escape withOswald by riding to Red Bird Airport in South Dallas in acity police car driven by a friend and fellow officer who didnot know what was happening.
That officer, Ricky Whitesays, was J. D. Tippit, who was shot to death at 10th Streetand Patton Avenue in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas about45 minutes after Kennedy was shot. Oswald was seenrunning from the scene of that shooting. Ricky White says hisfather wrote that, as they drove south, the unsuspectingofficer began to realize what White and Oswald wereinvolved in.
Oswald panicked and jumped from the car. When the officer insisted on “turning in” White, White got outof the car and shot the officer, Ricky White says. “I killed anofficer at 10th and Patton,” Ricky White quotes the diary assaying. Less than a half hour later, Oswald was arrested inthe Texas Theatre on West Jefferson Boulevard in Oak Cliff. He had a .
38- calibre revolver police said was the murderweapon. Murder charges against Oswald in connection withTippit’s death were filed before he was charged withKennedy’s death. Whether the revolver found in Oswald’spossession was actually the weapon that killed Tippit hasbeen a matter of dispute in several governmentinvestigations. Ricky White says that shortly after theassassination, his father sent the family to Paris and that heand other members of the assassination team used a”hideaway house” in Dripping Springs.
He says that, amonghis father’s effects, he found a third decoded message, datedDecember 1963, that advised his father to “stay withindepartment, witnesses have eyes, ears and mouths. . . .
Themen+will be in to cover up all misleading evidence soon. “That same month President Lyndon Johnson named ChiefJustice Earl Warren to head a commission to investigate theassassination. The Warren Commission concluded inSeptember 1964 that Oswald acted alone in killing bothKennedy and Tippit. Police records show that on Oct.
19,1965, Roscoe White quit the Dallas Police Department andbecame manager of a Dallas area drug store. During the nextsix years, he switched jobs several times, finally working as aforeman at M&M Equipment Co. , in East Dallas. FAMILYTROUBLE AND DEATH By early 1970, Roscoe andGeneva White were a deeply troubled couple and soughthelp, said the Rev. Jack Shaw, their Baptist minister inDallas. During a recent interview with theAmerican-Statesman, Shaw said Roscoe White told him atthe time that he and his family were “in danger.
” Whiteconfessed to leading “a double life,” the minister says, “and Iknew something was not right, something strange was goingon. ” Shaw says that within the last two years he taperecorded a number of counselling sessions with GenevaWhite about her recollection of what she believed to be herformer husband’s role in assassinations. Shaw, who is veryguarded in talking about the case, says Ricky White has onlya small portion of the full story, which he says “will knockyour eyes out. ” Shaw says he met with the Whites severaltimes in 1970-71, but the Kennedy assassination was notmentioned.
In 1971, Roscoe White was fatally injured in anexplosive fire at M&M Equipment. Before White died,Shaw talked with him in the hospital. He recalls White sayinghe didn’t think the fire was an accident – that he had seen aman running away just before the fire. After the funeral,Geneva White moved her family back to Paris. There, aboutfour years later, the White home was burglarized and someof Roscoe White’s personal possessions were taken, RickyWhite says. Police captured the two burglars and returnedthe possessions which included some of Roscoe White’sphotos – among them a shot taken by Marina Oswald of herhusband Lee Harvey Oswald holding a rifle in the back yardof their Dallas home in 1963.
For nearly 15 years after theassassination only two such photos were known. RoscoeWhite’s became the third. In its final report, the HouseSpecial Committee on Assassinations identified the photo ascoming from the family of a former Dallas policeman. According to Ricky White and an investigator for the Housecommittee, Geneva White had contacted the FBI after theburglary. The FBI informed the committee of the existenceof the photo.
The matter was not pursued becausecommittee investigators didn’t know about White’s pastrelationship with Oswald or Geneva White’s briefemployment at Jack Ruby’s Carousel Club. OTHERS FINDOUT Until he discovered the footlocker, Ricky White sayshe didn’t think much about his father or the Kennedyassassination. He grew up in Dallas and Paris, where hewent to school, got married and moved to Midland where heand his wife have two children. There he took a job sellingoil field equipment.
As shocking as the diary was to RickyWhite and his mother, Ricky says it was the safe deposit boxkey that was to draw others into the Roscoe White story. Thinking his father might have left money or valuables in adeposit box, Ricky White tried to find a bank that wouldrecognize the key. By 1988 he was so frustrated in hisattempts that he turned to Midland District Attorney AlSchorre for help. Schorre says he and his chief investigator,J.
D. Lucky, failed to find the bank. Schorre and Lucky saythey repeatedly asked to see Roscoe White’s diary afterRicky White mentioned it, but that he told them a relative inthe Lubbock area had it. Ricky White says he may have toldSchorre the diary was somewhere else but that he hadalways kept it in his possession.
Finally, Schorre, wholacked authority to demand the diary, called the FBI. RickyWhite says three agents came to his house and asked him toanswer questions in their Midland office. He says he took hisfather’s effects with him and the FBI made copies of all theitems except the diary. He says after several hours ofquestioning he returned home with all his father’s effects. Later that same day, White says, FBI agent Tom Farriscame to his house to retrieve a notebook he hadinadvertently left in the box of Roscoe White’s effects.
Whitesays he became aware that the diary was missing three orfour days later. “I never said that the (FBI agents) took it,”he says. “I am just saying he was the last one to leave thatbox. ” Agent Farris, who is in the Midland FBI office,transferred inquiries about the diary to his supervisor, TomKirspel. Kirspel would neither confirm nor deny that theagents had seen a diary. White says he never asked the FBIif it had the missing diary because he was “scared” of theagents who called at his house.
“I don’t want to haveanything to do with the FBI,” he says. Ricky White says FBIagent Ron Butler told him in 1988 that the FBI haddetermined that Roscoe White was at a crime scene in farNortheast Dallas at the time Kennedy was shot. Butlerdeclined to comment on any conversations with RickyWhite. QUESTION OF AUTHENTICITY Shaw, thedirector of the JFK Assassination Information Centre inDallas, says Ricky White has passed both a polygraph testand a voice stress analysis and passed both tests “with flyingcolours. ” However, the authenticity of the messages RickyWhite says he found is undetermined. Office of NavalIntelligence spokesman John Wanat says the agency cannotdetermine whether the messages came from authentic ONIcables without the coded cables.
“What they have there isreally nothing that we can narrow down as far as who mayhave generated it or if it’s legitimate or whether it’s somethingthat was fabricated,” Wanat said after viewing texts of themessages. John Stockwell, former chief of the CentralIntelligence Agency’s Angola Task Force in Washington,D. C. has seen the messages and sees a “90 to 95 percentprobability” that they are genuine. However, he says hecannot discount the possibility the messages are part of “anelaborate hoax. ” “I’ve measured it against my own readingsand consultations with researchers of the Kennedy thing,”says Stockwell, who ended a 12- year CIA career in 1976after being accused of violating his secrecy agreement withthe agency.
“I can’t see anything in what they have found andwhat the young man (Ricky White) is saying that isimplausible in terms of what our best knowledge of theassassination is now. It all could very well be true, and Iwould put it at a high probability that it is true. ” Bob Inmanvehemently disagrees. After reading copies of the text,Inman, former naval intelligence director (1974-76) and CIAdeputy director (1981-82), says the messages were notONI- generated. None of the three-digit code names in theheading of the messages means anything, he says.
“Myreaction is that it’s a forgery of some kind or invalid,” Inmansays. “There is not anything about this format that I have everseen before. That’s not the way messages were set up inthose days at all. ” Less is known about what Ricky Whitesays is a witness elimination list that he found in the canister.
Ricky White says there were 28 witnesses on the list, newsclippings of each victim and accompanied in some cases byhis father’s writing. “Ricky White’s story is no less logicalthan what we have been led to believe in 27 years. ” saysFensterwald. “If just anyone came out of the woodwork andsaid, ‘I shot John Kennedy,’ I would be exceedingly cautiousabout it. But if someone who was in the Marine Corps withOswald, whose wife worked for Jack Ruby and who knewthe Tippit family, crawls out of the woodwork and says Iwas involved in it, that doesn’t stretch my credulity at all.
“Itdoes, however, need a lot more investigation by someofficial body with power to subpoena witnesses. I don’t thinkprivate citizens can carry it much further. ” PREVIOUSINQUIRIES ON ASSASSINATION The assassination ofPresident John F. Kennedy on Nov.
22, 1963, in Dallas wasinvestigated by two government bodies: The WarrenCommission, headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren,concluded after a nine-month investigation in 1964 that LeeHarvey Oswald, acting alone, fired two shots from the sixthfloor of the Texas School Book Depository, killing PresidentJohn F. Kennedy and wounding Texas Gov. John Connally. The report conclusions left many skeptics. Since bulletspassed through the victims and shattered, investigators werenot able to match the rifling on the bullets to the marks thatwould have been caused by Oswald’s rifle. After athree-year investigation, the House Select Committee onAssassinations concluded in early 1979 that Oswald firedtwo shots that killed Kennedy and wounded Connally.
Scientific acoustical evidence indicated a “high probability”that an unidentified second gunman was firing from thegrassy knoll to the front and right of the presidentiallimousine, but missed. TEXT OF NAVY CABLES——————————————————————Navy Int. Code A MRC Remark data 1666106 NRC VDCNAC Dec. 63 Remarks Mandarin: Code G: Stay withindepartment, witnesses have eyes, ears and mouths.
You(illegible) do of the mix up. The men will be in to cover up allmisleading evidence soon. Stay as planned wait for furtherorders. C. Bowers RE – rifle Code AAA destroy/on/——————————————————————Navy Int.
Code A MRC Remark data 1666106 NRC VDCNAC (illegible). 63 Remarks Mandarin: Code A Foreignaffairs assignments have been cancelled. The next assignmentis to eliminate a National Security threat to world widepeace. Destination will be Houston, Austin or Dallas. Contacts are being arranged now.
Orders are subject tochange at any time. Reply back if not understood. C. Bowers OSHA RE – rifle Code AAA destroy/on/——————————————————————Navy Int. Code A MRC Remark data 1666106 Sept.
63Remarks Mandarin: Code A Dallas destination chosen. Your place hidden within the department. Contacts arewithin this letter. Continue on as planned.
C. Bowers OSHARE – rifle Code AAA destroy/on/——————————————————————(Part 2 – The post-press conference follow-up story) August7, 1990 DALLAS COP’S SON ROLLS OUT JFKTHEORY MATTOX, CIA, HOLLYWOOD ANSWERCONSPIRACY CLAIM By Andrew Likakis The Texasattorney general, a major Hollywood producer and theCentral Intelligence Agency are now being written into thenewest chapter in the never-ending mystery of whoassassinated President John F. Kennedy. A 29-year-oldunemployed oil equipment salesman from Midland stoodbefore scores of reporters in Dallas Monday and implicatedhis dead father in the assassination. Soon after, AttorneyGeneral Jim Mattox said he’d gladly review the evidence,and the CIA issued an unheard of denial.
At the same time,the FBI, which had previously refused to comment on RickyWhite’s story, issued a statement in Washington sayingagents had reviewed and dismissed White’s story two yearsago. And, finally, those who believe White’s story is trueacknowledge that last weekend, several of them met inHollywood with producer/director Oliver Stone, presumablyto discuss movie rights to the White story. The latest chapterin the Kennedy epic began at a two-hour press conferencein which White said his father, Roscoe Anthony White,joined the Dallas Police Department in October 1963 withthe express intent of killing Kennedy. During the pressconference called by two assassination research groups andseveral Midland businessmen, White and Baptist ministerJack Shaw talked about incriminating entries in RoscoeWhite’s missing diary, decoded cables, and the relationshipthat Roscoe White and his wife, Geneva, had with LeeHarvey Oswald, Dallas Officer J. D.
Tippit and Jack Ruby. Based on his own memories, his father’s diary and effects,and the recollections of his mother, Ricky White toldreporters that his father had been one of three shooters onthe day Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. AlthoughOfficer Tippit was a friend of his father’s, Ricky White sayshis father shot Tippit to death in the Oak Cliff section ofDallas about 45 minutes after the assassination, as he andOswald were trying to get away. Oswald was later accusedof killing Tippit.
During the press conference, White said hisfather was following orders to kill Kennedy and that, whilehe did not know who issued the orders, three messagesfound among his father’s effects have coding that might havecome from the Office of Naval Intelligence or, indirectly, theCIA. CIA RESPONSE: ‘LUDICROUS’ The suggestion ofCIA involvement brought a sharp response Monday fromagency spokesman Mark Mansfield in Washington: “Theseallegations – that this was done on CIA orders, that this guyworked for us and that CIA had any role in the assassinationof President Kennedy – are ludicrous. ” Roscoe White neverworked for the CIA, Mansfield said, adding: “normally, wenever confirm nor deny employment, but these allegationsare so outrageous that we felt it necessary and appropriateto respond. ” Also Monday, the FBI issued a statementsaying its agents had considered the Ricky White story in1988 and had “determined that this information is notcredible. ” Bernard Fensterwald, executive director of theAssassination Archives and Research Centre in Washington,said Monday that Mattox will be given all material that pointstoward Roscoe White’s involvement in the assassination.
RUBY, OSWALD MEETING In another curious twist tothe case, Mattox said late Monday he is interested in pursingthe White story because he was once told by his mother, awaitress at Campisi’s Egyptian Restaurant in Dallas, thatRuby frequented the restaurant and that she thought she sawRuby and Oswald eating dinner there together once. Therestaurant owner, the late Joe Campisi, testified before theHouse Select Committee on Assassinations in 1978 that hedidn’t see Oswald in his eatery, Mattox said. Mattox said hebelieves he has jurisdiction in the case, and he wouldinterview White and his associates “to see what they’ve gotand let them explain it to me. ” “The key to the thing, ofcourse, is, if the FBI acknowledges seeing the diary,”Mattox said.
“The only thing to do is to get a look at thediary or acknowledgement (by the FBI) that it existed. ” “Thisis not a solution to the John Kennedy case,” Fensterwaldsaid after Ricky White told his story. “It’s information wethink is important, and we think it’s true. Even if what is saidhere today checks out, the case is not solved. We still don’tknow who planned it and paid for it and basically what theshooting was about.
The best we can hope for is to get outof this an idea of who the actual assassins were. ” It may bedifficult for Mattox or anybody else to do much with thecase without the Roscoe White diary, which disappeared in1988. The leather bound journal talked about theassassination and the aftermath, said Ricky White, addingthat he and his mother read it. Roscoe White died of injuriessustained in an explosive fire in 1971. His widow, Geneva, iscritically ill and, according to family members, unable to beinterviewed.
A ‘SILENCED’ WIFE According to the Rev. Shaw, Geneva White could help an investigation. Shaw saysRoscoe and Geneva White confided in him in 1970-71 whenthey were having marital problems. And, he says, GenevaWhite confided in him again during the last year, telling himthat she was working as a hostess in Ruby’s Carousel Clubwhen she overheard her husband and Ruby discussing “theentire plot of the assassination of the President two monthsbefore the shooting. After the assassination, Shaw says,Geneva White was given electric shock treatments and keptsedated so she “would be silenced.
” Ruby had told her “in nouncertain terms that if she opened her mouth she was deadand her children were dead,” Shaw says Geneva White toldhim. Shaw says Geneva White told him she confronted herhusband after an organized crime figure approached her inNew Orleans in 1971 and told her to deliver a warning toher husband. According to Shaw, Geneva White was shownnearly a dozen photographs and identified the man in NewOrleans as Charles Nicoletti, formerly the number onehitman with the Sam Giancana Mafia family in Chicago. Nicoletti was executed gangland style in 1977, about a yearafter Giancana also met the same fate. Shaw says that, whenshe returned to Dallas and told her husband of the ominousmeeting in New Orleans, “he told her everything.
” Shaw saysthat, as he lay in a hospital dying from burns in 1971 RoscoeWhite told him that he had been marked for execution bysome of his underworld associates and that he believed thefire had been deliberately started to kill him. AHOLLYWOOD INTEREST Ricky White said Mondaythat, since he found his father’s diary, he has been consumedfull-time with trying to find out what role his father played inthe assassination. He said that for more than a year he hasreceived a “monthly salary” from the Matsu Corp. , whichwas formed by seven Midland oilmen solely to help financeRicky’s investigation into his father’s involvement in theassassination. Matsu president Gary Baily said Ricky beganreceiving financial help from Matsu on a “day-to-day basis”about six weeks ago after getting just expense funds formore than a year. Baily also said Ricky White is negotiatingwith Hollywood producer/director Oliver Stone for movierights to his story.
Last weekend, Ricky White, his wife andLarry Howard of the JFK Assassination Information Centrein Dallas met in the Los Angeles area with Oliver Stone andtoured Universal Studios. “Oliver Stone is interested, but nodeal has been made,” Baily said. Matsu so far has spentmore than $100,000 on the White project, Baily said. If anymoney is generated by the White story, about 74 percentwill go to Ricky White’s family. The rest would go to theMatsu Corp., Baily said.