Police docs from JFK assassination packed away in rarely-seen Dallas rooms

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by REBECCA LOPEZ

WFAA

Posted on October 1, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Updated Thursday, Oct 10 at 11:00 AM

DALLAS -- Sr. Cpl. Roderick Janich holds the keys that unlocks the door to the history of the Dallas Police Department.

In this small room, marked "press room," are some of the original artifacts from November 22, 1963.

Cpl. Janich brought out a door saved from the old police headquarters.

“A lot of history has gone through this door," he said.

The door that Lee Harvey Oswald stepped through when he was interrogated about the murders of President John F. Kennedy and Officer J.D. Tippit.

"The world changed that day," Janich said.

It changed, too, for the police officers investigating the murders. Angry people phoned in death threats, blaming the department for the assassination of the president.

“The president was very popular, and it happened in Dallas, unfortunately," Janich said.

The most important Dallas police documents are held in a vault at City Hall. The city archivist, John Slate, is the only one who can bring them out and display them. White gloves are required.

"That is the original homicide report for the president," Slate said, holding a piece of onion-skin paper.

One of the most interesting things when reading the documents is that the homicide and police reports never refer to the victim as President John F. Kennedy. He’s referred to as the deceased -- "The deceased was riding in the motorcade."

There are 11,000 items in the archives from the Kennedy assassination.

"This was sent to the Oswald while sitting in the city jail," Slate said, holding up another page.

It's one of the rarely seen telegrams sent to Oswald.

“It says, 'You are dead,'" Slate read.

And there is an Oswald interrogation report with corrections made with a red pen, part of the mountains of evidence that would have been presented if there had ever been a trial for the man who killed the president.

E-mail rlopez@wfaa.com

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