Tuesday, 26 February 2008

New Evidence Challenges Official Picture of Kennedy Shooting

The official record states that senator Robert F Kennedy, like his brother before him, was killed by a crazed lone gunman. But the assassination of a man who seemed to embody so much hope for a bitterly divided country embroiled in an unpopular war still troubles this nation.

Little about the official explanation of the events at the Ambassador Hotel on June 5 1968 makes sense. Now a new forensic analysis of the only audio recording of the fatal shots has given new weight to a controversial theory that there were in fact two shooters, and that the man convicted of Kennedy's killing — Sirhan Sirhan - did not fire the fatal shots.
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"Sirhan was apprehended at the scene with literally a smoking gun," said acoustic forensic expert Philip Van Praag of PVP Designs, who has carried out the new analysis. "At the beginning many people looked upon this as an open-and-shut case. It was one man, Sirhan Sirhan, who was observed by a number of people, who aimed and fired a gun in the direction of Kennedy's entourage."

But the lone gunman explanation has always looked shaky. The autopsy of Kennedy's body suggested that all four shots that hit him came from behind, and powder marks on his skin showed they must have been from close range.

But Sirhan was in front of Kennedy when he fired, and after shooting two shots was overcome by hotel staff, who pinned him to a table. Also, Sirhan fired eight shots in total, yet 14 were found lodged around the room and in the victims.

"There is no doubt in our minds that no fewer than 14 shots were fired in the pantry on that evening and that Sirhan did not in fact kill Senator Kennedy," said Robert Joling, a forensic scientist who has been involved with the Kennedy case for nearly 40 years. He and Van Praag have published a book on the killing this week entitled "An Open and Shut Case".
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2008/feb/22/kennedy.assassination

Although it is obvious that Sirhan Sirhan could not have killed RFK the evidence that would have proven his innocence never saw the light of day until recently. At the time of his trial Sirhan's lawyers convinced him to plead guilty to avoid the death penalty and so none of the information was ever presented in a court of Law. It was not until many years later that anyone was able to examine the crime scene evidence.

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