Ballistics Evidence

The three videos above are for illustrative purposes only. It would take a study comprising hundreds of pages of detailed text to explore the many ballistic possibilities arising from the fact of a bullet hole in the limousine windshield. Each video however demonstrates an aspect of the shooting which is of great significance. The first video demonstrates the difference between two different types of ammunition and their effect. Both shots use .223 calibre ammunition. A hollow point round will dump a tremendous amount of energy into the target in a very short space of time and distance. This causes massive temporary cavitation and consequently massive trauma. This type of trauma is graphically demonstrated in the frames of the Zapruder film showing the fatal head shot. Most experts agree that the round that struck the President was one designed to effect maximum damage. This may sound strange considering the fact that we are discussing a bullet aimed at a human being, but it is perfectly normal for ammunition to be selected that will tend to incapacitate or injure the target. The video also demonstrates the second alternative, a pointed round. The second video shows a high velocity round, again a .223, striking a torso target at medium range. It  demonstrates how the round will exit, but not in spectacular fashion. Finally, the third video demonstrates the effect a windshield can have on a targeted shot. In the example used, at close range, the bullet is deflected downward.

A question most often asked of the hypothesis I suggest here (that a single shooter, situated directly in front of the target at the two specific moments in question, fired both shots), is "how could the same ammunition that behaved as it did in the head shot penetrate a windshield and still strike it's target?". The logic behind this question, an objection to the suggestion that the same shooter could have fired both shots, is that the ammunition for each shot must surely have been different. The explanation lies in the behaviour of hollow point ammunition.

A hollow-point bullet is an expanding bullet that has a pit or hollowed out shape in its tip often intended to cause the bullet to expand upon entering a target in order to decrease penetration and disrupt more tissue as it travels through the target. It is also used for controlled penetration, where over-penetration could cause collateral damage (such as aboard an aircraft). In target shooting, they are used for greater accuracy and reduction of smoke, fouling, and lead vapor exposure, as hollow point bullets have an enclosed base while traditional bullets have an exposed lead base.

Hollow points are designed to increase in diameter once within the target, thus maximizing tissue damage and blood loss or shock, and to remain inside the target, thereby transferring all of the kinetic energy to the target (whereas some fraction would remain in the bullet if it passed through instead). Both of these goals are meant to maximize stopping power. Jacketed hollow points (JHPs) or plated hollow points are covered in a coating of harder metal (usually a copper alloy or copper coated steel) to increase bullet strength and to prevent fouling the barrel with lead stripped from the bullet. The term hollow-cavity bullet is used to describe a hollow point where the hollow is unusually large, sometimes dominating the volume of the bullet, and causes extreme expansion or fragmentation on impact.

 

The video to the right reinforces the third video above in its depiction of the downward deflection of the bullet. It also demonstrates how a hollow point bullet is affected following its passage through a laminate windshield. The characteristics described can be applied to Kennedy's injuries as observed both at Parkland and later by Tom Robinson of Gawlor's funeral Home after the autopsy. He said when he applied embalming fluid to the cadaver it leaked through tiny holes in JFK's face. It also explains why Charles Taylor Jr. observed bullet fragments in the windshield hole. Obviously we have no way at this late stage of knowing just what type of ammunition was used, but this video shows that a bullet of the type I suspect was used for the fatal head shot could also have been responsible for the throat shot. Both could have been hollow point rounds.

 

This evidence suggesting the use of the same type of bullet for both shots removes any objection to the idea that they were fired by the same shooter. This is of vital importance because later in this study I will show how it is possible, with the evidence already at our disposal, to estimate the location of the shooter. Although not dealing explicitly with the head shot it is of course central to this hypothesis that the origin of both shots can be proven to be one and the same. As I have previously said, this work is indebted to Sherry Fiester who, in her book "Enemy of the Truth, Myths, Forensics and the Kennedy Assassination" became the first researcher to apply professional Forensic qualifications to the study of the head shot. For any serious student of the assassination, and in particular of the shooting sequence in Dealey Plaza it is required reading. That book places the shooter south of the triple underpass. This one book debunked one theory perhaps most cherished by people who believe that Lee Oswald did not kill the President, namely that the fatal head shot originated from the North West corner of Dealey Plaza..the so-called "Grassy Knoll", or quite often "The Stockade Fence". For clarification, Sherry's findings do nothing to invalidate the presence of a shooter in that location but they prove conclusively that whoever shot did not strike the President in the head.

This video also goes a long way to explaining why the wound JFK suffered mystified many of the doctors and students of the assassination in the decades since. It suggests that because it is the same type of bullet used for the head shot its behaviour also explains the wounds it inflicted.  A Hollow point bullet, particularly one like a .223 high velocity round will leave casing and begin to fragment if it passes through laminate glass before it hits it's target. JFK's throat wound will be explored in greater detail later. because it is necessary to demonstrate just how one person can fire two shots with seemingly different behaviour using one type of ammunition, I direct the reader to Sherry Fiester's comprehensive explanation of the head wound. At this stage it is simply important to understand that if it hits a human target, it will produce instant and massive damage.

There is one other factor of crucial significance concerning the behaviour of a projectile...any projectile...striking a windshield - deflection. the person firing this shot was not intending to hit JFK in the throat. With that said, whoever it was must have used telescopic sights of some sort.

It would have been beyond the capacity of anyone to attempt such a precise shot without one. There are simply too many obstacles between the shooter and his target and were much too distant to discern with the naked eye. The shooter's view, aided by a telescopic sight, would, coincidentally, be very similar to Altgens 6. A more detailed analysis of the trajectory follows later.

Graphic depiction of how a windshield deflects a bullet.

What the shooter failed to compensate for, either by marginal error or because they did not know about the phenomenon, was windshield deflection. As can be seen in the diagram to the right in exaggerated form, a bullet travelling through a vehicle windshield will deflect. If fired into the vehicle the angle of the windshield results in downward deflection. If fired outward, the opposite occurs. It is not too speculative to suggest that at a distance of over 365 feet (see later analysis) a shot aimed at JFK's head was deflected by the windshield, stripped of much of its casing and momentum and struck JFK in the throat, ranging downward, as described by Parkland doctors. The videos above demonstrate just how credible such a suggestion is.

Affirmative Eyewitness Testimony

The following statements were given to the FBI on 24/11/63  by Mr. Jack Franzen and 25/11/63 by Mrs. Franzen, eyewitnesses to the assassination.

 


Mr. Franzen: advised he and his wife and small son were standing in the grass area west of Houston Street and south of Elm Street at the time the time that the President's motorcade arrived at that location at approximately 12:30 pm on November 22nd 1963. He said he heard the sound of an explosion which appeared to him to come from the President's car and noticed small fragments flying inside the vehicle and immediately assumed someone had tossed a firecracker inside the automobile.

(22 WCH 840).

Mrs. Jack Franzen: Advised shortly after the President’s automobile passed by where she and her family were standing she heard a noise which sounded to her as if someone had thrown a firecracker into the President’s automobile. She advised at approximately the same time she noticed dust or small pieces of debris flying from the President’s automobile.

(24 WCH 525).


 


The Franzen's were the only people to describe what appears to be the effect of the windshield shot within the vehicle. As shown above they were situated slightly further away from the Presidential Limousine at the moment it was struck than was Altgens. The Franzen's are the man, woman and child crossing our field of view from right to left. They can be seen in Zapruder frames 358 to 376 and appear to be some 12 to 15 feet further west than Altgens, making them some 75 to 80 feet from the incident they were describing using the scale provided by the Sprague Survey Map as shown below.


 

The location of the Franzen family at the time of the windshield shot.

Next - Firecrackers