Friday, November 22nd, 1963 began like any other day in the United States. However, by the end of this day, the United States would change forever. At 12:30pm, while making a routine appearance in Dallas, Texas, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was shot while riding down Elm street in his open limousine. This shooting sparred many people to question who the shooter was, why they shot the President, and how they got it done. Almost forty years later, many people are still uncertain who is responsible for the death of the 35th President of the United States. The intention of this paper is to examine the evidence against Lee Harvey Oswald whether or not have he could been solely responsible for the assassination of JFK, as well as to take a glance at the several conspiracy theories.
The investigation done by the Warren Commission, a group of citizens put together to analyze the information collected by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), found that Lee Harvey Oswald killed JFK. Their investigation concluded after only one week of sorting through the evidence provided to them. Paraffin tests, which conclude whether or not someone has fired a gun, were done on November 23rd, 1963 and tested positive for Oswald's hands, but negative for his cheek. The results concluded that, "the nitrate pattern on his hands was consistent with the allegation that he fired the revolver that killed Officer Tippit" (Fetzer 368). In addition, "since the paraffin test taken of the right side of his face did not reveal nitrates and no test was taken of the left side, these results offered no evidence of his having fired a rifle or a carbine" (Fetzer 368). Generally, this evidence would prove in Oswald's favor, but the Warren Commission shut it down. The commission documented the paraffin test as "completely unreliable in determining either whether a person has recently fired a weapon or whether he has not" (Warren Commission).