WHAT IS A POLICE LINEUP ?
A police lineup is a process by which a crime victim or witness's
putative identification of a suspect is confirmed to a level that can
count as evidence at trial.
The suspect, along with several other individuals ( which I will be
referring to as "fillers" ) of similar height, complexion and build
stand both facing and in profile. This is sometimes done in a special
room which includes details like a height measurement grade on the
wall to aid identifying the person's height. The person making the
identification views from behind a one-way mirror or similar
protection to guarantee the suspect identified by the witness cannot
know the identity of the witness. If the victim or witness
successfully identifies the suspect from among the fillers, the
identification is considered valid.
For evidence from a lineup to be admissible in court, the lineup
itself must be conducted fairly. The police may not say or do anything
that persuades the witness to identify the suspect that they prefer.
This includes loading the lineup with people who look very dissimilar
to the suspect.
There are two common types of lineups: simultaneous and sequential.
In a simultaneous lineup, the eyewitness views all the people or
photos at the same time.
In a sequential lineup, people or photographs are presented to the
witness one at a time.
The Dallas Police used a simultaneous type for the live lineups in
Typically, the law enforcement official or lineup administrator knows
who the suspect is. Experts suggest that lineup administrators might—
whether purposefully or inadvertently—give the witness verbal or
nonverbal cues as to the identity of the suspect. For instance, if an
eyewitness utters the number of a filler, the lineup administrator may
say to the witness, “Take your time . . . . Make sure you look at all
Such a statement may effectively lead the witness away from the
According to the National Institute of Justice, which is the research
and development agency of the US Department of Justice, several
variables might effect the validity of police lineups.
1. Whether the person administering the lineup knows which person in
the lineup is the suspect.
2. Instructions given to the witness, including saying or implying
that the suspect will be present.
3. Use of lineup "fillers" who do not resemble the suspect, thus
making the suspect stand out. For example, the suspect has dark hair,
but only one of five people in the lineup has dark hair.
And finally, multiple witnesses viewing the same lineup must do so
Were the Dallas Police Department's lineups valid ?
POLICE EMPLOYEES WERE USED IN THE FIRST TWO LINEUPS
The three other participants in the first two lineups were Dallas
Police employees. William Perry and Richard Clark were detectives in
the Vice Division and Don Ables was a clerk in the jail.
Detective L. C. Graves told the Warren Commission that the way
"fillers" were selected for lineups was that the homicide division
would call down to the jail office, tell them which prisoner they
wanted to show and ask them to provide two, three or four other
prisoners who were the approximate age and size as the prisoner they
( 7 H 253 )
But this is not the way that the "fillers" were selected for the first
two lineups in this case.
William Perry testified that Capt. Fritz called the vice unit, not the
jail, and requested two officers ( 7 H 233 )
Perry's partner Clark confirmed it was Fritz who made the request
( 7 H 236 )
Detective Jim Leavelle testified that the Dallas Police "didn't
normally" use police officers in lineups ( 7 H 262 )
Fritz testified that he "borrowed those officers" because he feared
other prisoners would harm Oswald and that "we didn't have an officer
in my office the right size to show with him so I asked two of the
special service officers if they would help me". ( 4 H 212 )
Less than 4 hours later, however, at the 7:55 pm lineup, Oswald was
handcuffed to two other prisoners.
In Saturday's lineup, ALL of the fillers were prisoners.
So much for Fritz's fear for Oswald's safety.
THE "FILLERS" WERE NOT DRESSED AS CLOSE AS POSSIBLE TO OSWALD
" I know in all cases we usually try to have them dressed as alike as
possible, the same as each other."
--- Sgt. James Leavelle ( 7 H 265 )
Capt. Fritz testified that the three police "fillers" "took off their
coats and neckties and fixed themselves where they would look like
prisoners" and were not dressed any better than Oswald. ( 4 H 212 )
But when questioned by the WC, "filler" William Perry testified that
he put on a brown sports coat for both lineups.
( 7 H 233 )
"Filler" RL Clark testified that he was wearing a white short sleeved
shirt and a red vest for both lineups. He also testified that he got
the red vest and Perry got the brown sports coat FROM THE HOMICIDE
OFFICE. ( 7 H 236 )
Don Ables testified that he had on a white shirt and a grey knit
sweater for both lineups. ( 7 H 240 )
But Oswald was wearing Commission Exhibit 150 for both lineups, the
shirt that has a frayed hole in the elbow.
( 4 H 73 )
Detective Elmer Boyd admitted under oath that the three police
employees WERE dressed better than Oswald.
( 7 H 127 )
Fritz lied to the Commission when he testified that the police
officers "fixed themselves where they would look like prisoners" .
Prisoners don't wear red vests or brown sport coats. And it's not a
mistake that Fritz could have made unintentionally because Fritz
testified that he was present at the first lineup for Helen Markham
( 4 H 212 ) and Det. Clark testified that those items of clothing were
taken from the homicide office.
THE PERSON ADMINISTERING THE LINEUP KNEW WHICH PERSON IN THE LINEUP
WAS THE SUSPECT
Jim Leavelle conducted lineup #'s 1,3 and 4 and spoke to the witnesses
prior to lineup 2. Leavelle indicated in testimony that he knew that
two officers from the Vice Unit and a jail clerk had been used for the
( 7 H 263-264 )
Leavelle also testified that he had seen Oswald, " the first day he
was arrested and when they brought him in and out of the office taking
him to and from the jail, and of course, I had saw him at the lineups,
what-have-you ". ( 7 H 268 )
So Leavelle, by his own admission, was more than aware that Oswald was
He knew it.
Detective Sims conducted lineup # 2 at 6:30 pm on Friday. According to
Capt. Fritz, Sims was present at the first interrogation session
between 2:15 and 4:05 ( 4 H 209 ) and thus knew that Oswald was the
suspect prior to his conducting the 6:30 lineup.
In addition, Sims testified that he KNEW ALL THREE OF THE POLICE
FILLERS that were used in the lineup he conducted.
( 7 H 179 )
IT WAS INDICATED TO THE WITNESSES THAT THE PERPERTRATOR WAS PRESENT IN
In his testimony, Callaway quoted what Detective Jim Leavelle told
himself, Guinyard and McWatters before they viewed lineup # 2 :
Mr. CALLAWAY. We first went into the room. There was Jim Leavelle, the
detective, Sam Guinyard, and then this busdriver and myself......and
Jim told us, "When I show you these guys, be sure, take your time, see
if you can make a positive identification.........We want to be sure,
we want to try to wrap him up real tight on killing this officer. We
think he is the same one that shot the President. But if we can wrap
him up tight on killing this officer, we have got him."
( 3 H 355 )
Leavelle was telling them that the suspect in Tippit's killing was in
the lineup they were about to see.
THE "FILLERS" DID NOT RESEMBLE EITHER THE PERPERTRATOR OR THE SUSPECT
"Let me say this, that it would be very unusual if we had a showup
and .........if they put anything other than men that fit their
approximate size and age in there with them......because we just don't
operate that way." --- Dallas Detective L. C. Graves ( 7 H 253 )
Mrs. Markham's description of the Tippit killer as given to Officer
J.M. Poe was a white male, about 25, about 5 feet 8, brown hair,
medium build . ( 7 H 68 ) She also testified that the man who she saw
shoot Tippit "wasn't too heavy."
( 3 H 317-318 )
And she gave a completely different description of the killer to FBI
Agent Bardwell D. Odum. She told him that the killer was a white male,
about 18, black hair, red complexion ( 3 H 318 )
Ted Callaway, who viewed the exact same lineup as Mrs. Markham about
two hours later, described the killer as a man with dark hair and a
fair complexion ( 3 H 356 )
Howard Brennan described the Kennedy killer as early 30's , fair
So how did the physical attributes of the "fillers" in the first two
lineups compare to the descriptions given by the witnesses who viewed
Perry was 34 yo 5-11 150 brown hair dark complexion
( 7 H 235, 7 H 168 )
Clark was 31 yo 5-11 177 blond hair ruddy complexion
( 7 H 239, 7 H 168 )
Ables was 26 yo 5-9 165 dark hair ruddy complexion
( 7 H 242-243, 7 H 168 )
Elmer Boyd told the Commission that they "always tell them to get the
same color". ( 7 H 131 )
But Sam Guinyard testified that the men in the second lineup ( who
were the same men as was in the first ) were NOT the same color
( 7 H 399 )
Markham, Guinyard, Callaway and even Brennan all viewed the exact same
lineup, with the exact same "fillers" in the exact same positions,
dressed exactly the same. The fillers were all too dark, too blond and
too heavy with the completely wrong complexion to match the
descriptions of the witnesses.
As if having one blond in the first two lineups was not enough, the
Dallas Police put TWO blonds in the lineup with Oswald and Ables for
lineup # 3.
( 7 H 179 )
In this lineup, the witnesses, Barbara and Virginia Davis described
the man they saw running across their lawn as
a white male, slender, light complexion, with either light brown or
( 3 H 349 ) ( 6 H 457 ).
But both fillers Richard Walter Borchgardt and Ellis Carl Brazel had
blond hair, and a ruddy complexion. ( 7 H 179 )
And Ables also had a ruddy complexion ( 7 H 242-243, 7 H 168 )
In his testimony, taxicab driver William Scoggins described the
murderer of Tippit as a white male, light complexion, 25-26, medium
height and weight, with either medium brown or dark hair ( 3 H 333 )
But Lineup # 4 "filler" John Thurman Horne was 17 and "filler" David
Edmond Knapp was 18. ( 7 H 200 )
The final "filler" for the fourth lineup was Daniel Lujan, a 26 year
old Mexican who was on the heavy side at 5-8 and 170. ( 7 H 245 )
This is what the NIJ says about providing fillers for police lineups :
"Fillers who do not resemble the witness’s description of the
perpetrator may cause a suspect to stand out."
THE WITNESSES DID NOT VIEW THE LINEUP SEPARATELY
In the second, third and fourth lineups, the witnesses were allowed to
view the lineups as a group, rather than separately.
Sam Guinyard testified that during the second lineup he and Ted
Callaway sat only 3-4 feet apart from one another.
( 7 H 400 )
Virginia Davis testified that during the third lineup, Barbara was
sitting right next to her. ( 6 H 462 )
Whaley and Scoggins viewed the fourth lineup together. ( 3 H 337 )
THE WITNESSES KNEW WHICH MAN WAS THE SUSPECT BEFORE THEY WITNESSED THE
Scoggins testified that he saw Oswald's picture in the morning paper.
( 3 H 334-335 )
Brennan testified that he saw Oswald on TV. ( 3 H 155 )
ALL OF THE MEN WERE NOT HANDCUFFED TOGETHER FOR THE FIRST LINEUP
Detective Clark testified that Don Ables was NOT handcuffed to him for
the first lineup. ( 7 H 237 )
As soon as he says that, they immediately go off the record for a
Joseph Ball asked Ables if he were ever handcuffed to Oswald.
( 7 H 242 )
But he never asked Ables if he was handcuffed to Clark.
Instead, he asked Capt. Fritz, and detectives Boyd and Sims,
Fritz, who was present for the first lineup, said he "didn't remember
for sure". ( 4 H 212 )
Then Boyd was asked if it was usual to have all the participants
handcuffed with the suspect. His response was that it was. When he was
asked if he knew why it wasn't done in this case his response was that
he did not know.
( 7 H 125 )
But two pages later, Boyd is again asked if they were all handcuffed
together. He takes the cue from Ball and says they were. His partner,
Richard Sims said that all the participants were handcuffed together.
( 7 H 167 )
By not having Ables handcuffed to Clark, the authorities created the
image of prisoner Oswald being handcuffed to a police officer on
either side, rather than the image of four prisoners handcuffed
WITNESSES WERE INFLUENCED BY PHYSICAL APPEARANCES OF THE "FILLERS"
Dr. Gary Wells, an Iowa State University psychologist who has
researched identifications by witnesses since the mid-1970s describes
what a witness sees in a lineup. He says, "The tendency is to pick the
one who looks most like the person you saw. It becomes more about
reasoning than memory."
"...... the reason I say that he looked like the man, because the rest
of them were larger men ........The only one I could identify at all
would be the smaller man on account he was the only one who could come
near fitting the description." ---- Cecil McWatters ( 2 H 281 )
When Howard Brennan viewed the second lineup on November 22nd, he
chose Oswald as the one who "most resembled" the man he saw.
( 3 H 154-155 )
This phenomena of choosing the one who "looks like" rather than one
who "is" is supported by research published in 1998 by a Wells-led
team. In that research, subjects were shown a grainy film of a staged
crime, then handed six photos. They weren't told whether the
"criminal" they had seen was in the group of pictures.
He wasn't, but nearly all of the subjects chose a picture anyway.
WITNESSES WERE INTIMIDATED BY THE AUTHORITIES
Helen Markham testified to the pressure she was receiving at the first
"When I saw this man I wasn't sure....and they kept asking me, 'which
one, which one ? '...." ( 3 H 311 )
THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM IN DALLAS COUNTY HAD A REPUTATION FOR
FRAMING INNOCENT PEOPLE
They did it at least 19 other times that we know of.
The proof of that has been the 19 convictions, 17 of those having
occurred under former DA Henry Wade's regime, which have been
overturned by DNA evidence since the 1980's .
Wade's justice system in Dallas County was more interested in closing
cases than it was in bringing the true perpetrators of crimes to
"Now in hindsight, we're finding lots of places where detectives in
those cases, they kind of trimmed the corners to just get the case
done," said Michelle Moore, a Dallas County public defender and
president of the Innocence Project of Texas. "Whether that's the fault
of the detectives or the DA's, I don't know."
Typical Wade cases "were riddled with shoddy investigations, evidence
was ignored and defense lawyers were kept in the dark".
John Stickels, a University of Texas at Arlington criminology
professor and a director of the Innocence Project of Texas, blames a
culture of "win at all costs."
"When someone was arrested, it was assumed they were guilty," he said.
"I think prosecutors and investigators basically ignored all evidence
to the contrary and decided they were going to convict these guys."
It didn't matter that there were killers out there still at large. As
far as the authorities were concerned, once they made an arrest for a
crime, they had the right man.
Most law enforcement officers and prosecutors are honest and
trustworthy. But criminal justice is a human endeavor and the
possibility for corruption always exists.
The testimony from the hearings indicate that the Dallas Police had a
procedure for the selection of "fillers" in their lineups. The
testimony also shows that the police deviated from that procedure for
the first two lineups because there was no one "the right size" to
show with Oswald. The police then solved this dilemma by putting
"fillers" in the lineups who, not only weren't even close to the
descriptions given by the witnesses, they didn't even come close to
They put guys in there who were darker skinned, heavier, had the wrong
hair color, the wrong complexion, younger and older than either the
witness descriptions of the killer, or the suspect Oswald.
They put teenagers in the lineups. They put blonds in the lineups.
They even put a minority in the last lineup.
The purpose for such "selections" of "Fillers" was to insure that
Oswald was the only one who even came close to matching the
description of the killer and thus making him the only choice
In the first lineup, the men were not all handcuffed together, only
numbers 1-3 were handcuffed and since Oswald was # 2, this presented
the mental image of prisoner Oswald between two better dressed
Before the second lineup, Leavelle tipped off Callaway, Guinyard and
McWatters that the Tippit killer was in the lineup.
In the second, third and fourth lineups, the witnesses were allowed to
view the lineup together, rather than separately.
Both Davis women each claimed to have identified Oswald first,
( 3 H 350 ) ( 6 H 462 ) and since they were seated next to each other,
it is a strong indication that they identified Oswald together.
The Dallas Police did everything they possibly could do to influence
the selection of Oswald, short of hanging a sign on him that said,
"pick me" or showing him with three officers in uniform.
That's how ridiculously biased these lineups were.
Nowhere are the authorities efforts to lead the witnesses more blatant
and obvious than on pages 310-311 of Volume 3 of the Hearings. Joseph
Ball is trying to get Helen Markham to say that the # 2 man in the
lineup was the one she saw kill Tippit. But Markham is not
cooperating, insisting that she didn't recognize any of the men in the
lineup "by their face". Frustrated, Ball asks the following leading
"Was there a # 2 man in there ? "
This seemingly ridiculous question ( of course there'd be a number 2
man in a four man lineup ) was used to lead witness Markham right to
Oswald, and proves my point that not only did the authorities
influence, but they even LED the witnesses in their identifications.
If Oswald WAS guilty, the Dallas Police didn't NEED to put into the
lineups men and boys who matched neither the description of the
killer, nor Oswald.
They didn't NEED to lie about how the lineup participants were similar
or similarly dressed when in fact they were not.
They didn't NEED to tip the witnesses that the suspect was in the
lineup before they viewed it.
They didn't NEED to have the witnesses view the lineups as a group.
They didn't NEED to influence witness identifications or to lead
witnesses in testimony.
If Oswald WAS guilty, then none of these extremes were necessary and
because they WERE taken, they can only lead us to one conclusion:
OSWALD WAS INNOCENT OF BOTH MURDERS.
When the lineups are not valid, the identifications made from those
lineups are likewise not valid. Therefore, the identifications made by
Markham, Callaway, Guinyard, the Davises and Scoggins cannot be
accepted as "positive identifications". I believe that all of these
extreme steps, collectively, were not a series of coincidences nor
were they the result of "good police work", but rather are the proof
that Lee Harvey Oswald killed no one and that he was being framed for
the murders of Jefferson Davis Tippit and John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
What did the Commission say in its Report about the police lineups ?
"The Commission is satisfied that the lineups were conducted fairly."
( Chap. 4 pg. 169 )
The evidence and testimony, however, does NOT support that conclusion.
more fart chasing!
It`s been rebutted by Mark, retard. You can`t cite modern sources
like Wikipedia, they don`t apply. You need to cite case law that was
applicable to those line-ups. But there is no way you will understand
this no matter how many times it is explained to you.
Does denail get you through life Mark??? IT doesn't work here.
YOU have to prove this is the standard way the DPD handled lineups
since you are supporting the RESULTS of the lineup in regards to LHO!
Show us this was the normal procedure used by the DPD for ALL
> Does denail get you through life Mark??? �IT doesn't work here.
> YOU have to prove this is the standard way the DPD handled lineups
> since you are supporting the RESULTS of the lineup in regards to LHO!
> Show us this was the normal procedure used by the DPD for ALL
It wasn't SOP for the DPD.....the testimony is evidence that proves it
Exactly my point....thus Mark is sunk. That is why he is dumping it
on you instead, this is TYPICAL LNer behavior.
Deny, lie, deny and then dump in on the other person!
It was Graves who held the showup. You know, the person whos
testimony you are using to make the case that the showup Graves held
>the testimony is evidence that proves it
The testimony proves it was Oswald the witnesses saw. Markham said
she was sure. Scoggins said he was sure. As did Callaway. As did
Whaley. Since Gil is under the impression that testimony proves
things, it is proven by testimony that Oswald killed Tippit.