Chauncey Marvin Holt (October 23, 1921—June 28, 1997) was an American known for claiming to be one of the "three tramps" photographed in Dealey Plaza shortly after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Background[edit | edit source]
Holt was born in Kentucky. His family were circus performers and in his youth he walked a tightrope. Holt moved to San Diego County in the 1970s and lived in La Mesa, California during the last decade of his life. Holt died of cancer at the age of 75, and was survived by a daughter and granddaughter.
Claims of involvement in JFK assassination[edit | edit source]
Chauncey Holt first came forward with his story in 1991 and, on October 19, was interviewed for Newsweek by JFK researchers John Craig, Phillip Rogers and Gary Shaw. The article was published in the December 23, 1991 issue. Also, a number of local news channels in San Diego and Dallas did reports on Holt's story. The 3 hour interview itself was never published at the time, however, a transcript of the interview was later published on the website of Dutch JFK assassination researcher Wim Dankbaar. Chauncey Holt himself submitted to the San Diego Union Tribune a critical reaction on their review of the book Case Closed by Gerald Posner, who advocates that Lee Harvey Oswald killed President Kennedy.
Controversy over Holt's story[edit | edit source]
Holt's story was undermined in 1992 when the Dallas Police Department alleged that the three tramps were Gus Abrams, John F. Gedney and Harold Doyle. Ray and Mary LaFontaine carried out their own research into this claim. They traced Doyle and Gedney who confirmed they were two of the tramps. Gus Abrams was dead but his sister identified him as the third tramp in the photograph. Assassination researcher and Warren Commission apologist John McAdams reported the findings of this research on his website. Other researchers like James Fetzer, Lois Gibson and Wim Dankbaar point to the inconsistencies in this research and even suggest it was a deliberate attempt to discredit the story of Holt. Wim Dankbaar stated:
Chauncey's revelations were largely ignored by the mainstream media. The few media that did report on it, left it with a conclusion that cast doubts on his story. I could believe that Doyle, Gedney and Abrams were picked up from a train and taken into custody. So in that regard they may well have been telling the truth. I just don't believe they are the men in the tramp photographs. As Chauncey said, several individuals were picked up that day from the railroad yard.
The shadows in the photographs indicate a time around 2:30 PM or later. The shadows have moved two hours compared with the time of the shooting. This is consistent with Holt, who said they were hiding in the boxcar for 2 hours before they were found. It is not consistent with what Doyle and Gedney were telling. In the photographs you can also see that the crowds of people are gone, which is also indicating a time well after the assassination. All the documents and statements (also from the arresting officers) say that the arrests occurred very shortly after the assassination, within an hour, well before 1:30 PM. Read the interviews with the arresting officers.
The sun and shadows don't lie. It's just the law of the earth's rotation.
Also, Doyle and the others said that they were picked up from an open flatbed coal car, known as a gondola, not a boxcar. This is in their FBI statements.
The man that is supposedly Harold Doyle looks to be much older than 32. This is also more consistent with what Holt is telling. Charles Rogers, aka Richard Montoya was 43 at the time. Two good acquaintances of Rogers identified him immediately from those photographs. One was an ex girlfriend that he dated, the other was Charles Rolland, manager of the Houston ice-skating rink where Rogers frequently used the pay-phone.
Forensic expert Lois Gibson[edit | edit source]
Lois Gibson works for the Houston Police Department and is one the most respected forensic facial experts in the world. She was recently awarded with a notation in the Guinness Book of World Records for the highest crime solving rate based on composite sketches. Lois Gibson has made a comparison study of the "three tramps", photographed in Dealey Plaza on November 22, 1963. She concluded that the three men were Chauncey Holt, Charles Harrelson and Charles Rogers. The video presentation of her analysis can be found on the Internet.
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Alvord, Valerie (July 5, 1997). "Chauncey Holt; claimed inside scoop in JFK killing". The San Diego Union-Tribune (San Diego): p. B.7.1.6.
- Gates, David (December 23, 1991). "Bottom Line: How Crazy Is It?". Newsweek 118: 52–54. http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/1991/12/23/bottom-line-how-crazy-is-it.html.
- Video fragment of 1991 interview with Chauncey Holt
- News report on Holt's story
- Partial transcript of 1991 interview
- Chauncey Holt's letter to the San Diego Tribune
- Article on the three tramps by John Mcadams
- FBI Document on arresting officer
- FBI interview with Harold Doyle
References[edit | edit source]
|This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (March 2012)|
- Video fragment of 1991 interview
- Partial transcript of 1991 interview
- Presentation of Lois Gibson on Google video
- Transcript and slides of Lois Gibson presentation
- Article by John Mcadams, disputing Holt's confession
- A web page with documents about the Three Tramps