The testimony of Ronald Lee Jenkins was taken at 1 p.m. on July 14, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex., by Mr. Leon D. Hubert, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Sam Kelley, assistant attorney general of Texas, was present.


Mr. HUBERT. This is the deposition of Ronald L. Jenkins. Mr. Jenkins, my name is Leon Hubert. I am a member of the advisory staff of the President's Commission.
Under the provisions of Executive Order 11130 dated November 29, 1963 and the joint resolution of Congress No. 137, and the rules of procedure adopted by the President's Commission in conformance with that Executive order and the joint resolution, I have been authorized to take a sworn deposition from you.
I state to you now that the general nature of the Commission's inquiry is to ascertain, evaluate, and report upon the facts relevant to the assassination of President Kennedy and the subsequent violent death of Lee Harvey Oswald.
In particular as to you, Mr. Jenkins, the matter of the inquiry today is to determine what facts you know about the death of Oswald and any other pertinent facts you may know about the general inquiry.
Now Mr. Jenkins, you appear here today by virtue of a letter addressed to you by Mr. J. Lee Rankin, general counsel on the staff of the President's Commission, asking you to appear before me to take your deposition, is that correct?
Mr. JENKINS. That is correct.
Mr. HUBERT. Do you remember when you received that letter, sir?
Mr. JENKINS. The latter part of last week. I don't know which day, exactly.
Mr. HUBERT. Would it have been Friday, or earlier ?
Mr. JENKINS. I believe earlier. I believe it was July 10 or earlier.
Mr. HUBERT. Will you stand and raise your right hand? Do you solemnly swear that the testimony you are about to give will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?
Mr. JENKINS. I do.
Mr. HUBERT. Will you state your full name?
Mr. JENKINS. Ronald Lee Jenkins.
Mr. HUBERT. And your address?
Mr. JENKINS. 1048 South Bryan, Mesquite, Tex.
Mr. HUBERT. How old are you, sir ?
Mr. JENKINS. Twenty-seven.
Mr. HUBERT. What is your occupation ?
Mr. JENKINS. A news editor for KBOX Radio, Dallas, Tex.
Mr. HUBERT. Have you been connected with that station for very long?
Mr. JENKINS. I have been connected with KBOX since the 1st of August of 1963.
Mr. HUBERT. What was your occupation prior to that time?
Mr. JENNER. I was news director at KAYC at Beaumont, Tex.
Mr. HUBERT. How long were you with that organization?
Mr. JENKINS. Fourteen months.
Mr. HUBERT. Then prior to that, what was your occupation?
Mr. JENKINS. Three and a half years, U.S. Army News Corps to the American Forces Network.
Mr. HUBERT. Honorable discharge?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. Now, Mr. Jenkins, I have previously handed you, and I think you have read a document which purports to be a report of an interview of you by Special FBI Agents Edmond Hardin and Robert J. Wilkinson on December 10, 1963, the document consisting of three pages.
For the purpose of identification, I have marked the first page as follows, to wit: In the right-hand margin, "Dallas, Tens, July 14, 1964, Exhibit No. 1, deposition of Ronald L. Jenkins," under which I have signed my name, and I have placed my initials in the lower right-hand corner of the second and third pages.
Now I ask you again whether or not you have had an opportunity to read this document, Exhibit No. 1?
Mr. JENKINS. I have.
Mr. HUBERT. I ask you now whether or not this document represents a fair statement and correct statement of the interview and of the facts stated therein?
Mr. JENKINS Except for the first paragraph.
Mr. HUBERT. I noticed you made a little mark as to the third paragraph on page 1.


Mr. HUBERT. In which reference is made to your participation in the coverage of the President Kennedy tour with a certain David King of UPI, Dallas. I think it is as to that that you wish to address yourself?
Mr. JENKINS. That is correct.
Mr. HUBERT. What have you to say about that?
Mr. JENKINS. I have not associated, nor did I know David King or anyone by that name. In fact, I still don't. At that time we did have a new editor by the name of Karl King, and he was our anchor man. He was the new man on the air at the time the assassination occurred.
Mr. HUBERT. Was he with UPI ?
Mr. JENKINS. Following the assassination, he was relieved from KBOX and subsequently he went to work part time with UPI as an audio man. He is now employed as a newsman with WBAP Television in Fort Worth. This is the only Mr. King that I have had any close dealings with at all.
Mr. HUBERT. Now other than that correction in Exhibit No. 1, have you any other corrections to make?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I do not.
Mr. HUBERT. About any part of it?
Mr. JENKINS. No corrections.
Mr. HUBERT. I do know, however, that on page 3 in the third paragraph apparently on the original, the name Robert Thompson has been scratched and the name James Robert Thornton has been written above that.
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. Is the name James Robert Thornton correct?
Mr. JENKINS. I do not know the man's real name. I only know him by the name of Bob Thornton, and he is with FAA Radio, and I believe television too.
Mr. HUBERT. In any case, it was not Robert Thompson ?
Mr. JENKINS. No, sir; it was not.
Mr. HUBERT. Now you state in Exhibit No. 1 that you saw Jack Ruby, I believe, on November 22 on the third floor of the Dallas police station between the hours of 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Did you know Ruby prior to November 22, 1963 ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I did not.
Mr. HUBERT. Had you ever seen him at all ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I hadn't.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you know of his existence?
Mr. HUBERT. Now apparently later you identified Ruby as a man that you had seen on the third floor on November 22, and I ask you now how you identified the man that you saw on the 22d as Jack Ruby whom you did not know on the 22d?
Mr. JENKINS. I don't think I ever have said that I saw him for sure and could identify him for sure. It was strictly by recall. I was able to see him in person, I believe it was, on the afternoon of the Oswald shooting. I think that was the 24th.
Mr. HUBERT. Where did you see him then ?
Mr. JENKINS. Just outside Capt. Will Fritz' office in the Dallas Police Department. He was being brought down from, I would suppose, the city jail, brought down the corridor past the gathering of newsmen, and I was one of the few who managed to just have been standing outside of Captain Fritz' office door, and he passed within a few feet of me. He was very familiar, and the face was familiar, and it just seemed to me that I had seen the man on the Friday night previous. This was the first thing that struck me when I did see him, because I had not seen him following the Oswald shooting up until that moment.
Mr. HUBERT. Is it a fact that immediately upon seeing him under the circumstances and the time and conditions that you stated, that you had the mental reaction that you had seen this man before?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; that is correct.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you at that time associate him with the man you had seen on the 22d?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; I did.
Mr. HUBERT. Immediately?


Mr. JENKINS. Well, it was a matter of a few minutes. I was trying to think where I had seen him before, and then it occurred to me that I had seen him in the hallway near the elevator shaft of the third floor on the evening of the assassination.
Mr. HUBERT. I think you said also that you saw him later that Friday night at the time in the assembly room ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. I take it you were in the assembly room ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. And that you did see a man whom you now think was Jack Ruby in that room ?
Mr. JENKINS. I am quite sure it seemed to me it was the same man.
Mr. HUBERT. When you saw him on the 24th under the conditions that you stated and. after reflection, did you also think that the Jack Ruby you saw on the 24th was also the man you had seen in the assembly room?
Mr. JENKINS. I was more sure than I was not that this was the same man, but again, I had not seen him before, and this was strictly by recall.
Mr. HUBERT. I am trying to probe your intellectual processes on the 24th, and as I gather it, on the 24th when you first saw him, your intellectual processes were that "I have seen this man," and then upon searching your memory, you related it to the man you had seen on two different occasions on Friday, the 22d? That is to say, in the hall in the early part of the afternoon, and then later in the assembly room, is that correct?
Mr. JENKINS That is correct.
Mr. HUBERT. Do you think that the man you saw earlier in the evening on the third floor was the same man that you saw in the assembly room?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; I think so.
Mr. HUBERT. And. you think that Jack Ruby was that man on both occasions?
Mr. JENKINS. In my opinion, it was the same man.
Mr. HUBERT. It might have been ?
Mr. JENKINS. In my opinion, it was the same man; yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. How was he dressed on the first occasion that you saw him? That is to say, the early part of the afternoon and evening?
Mr. JENKINS. The only thing that I can recall is that the man had on what could have been an overcoat or a topcoat. It was a long coat of some sort. It seemed it might have been of a brown or lighter brown or dark gray color, and it was definitely an overcoat. It seemed to be some sort of trench coat, or not a long coat.
Mr. HUBERT. Did he have a hat?
Mr. JENKINS. No hat.
Mr. HUBERT. Do you remember what his hair looked like?
Mr. HUBERT. Was he slightly bald?
Mr. JENKINS. I really don't remember, except it was dark.
Mr. HUBERT. Slightly bald?
Mr. JENKINS. I can't even positively recall at this moment whether I noticed whether it was slightly bald or not. I have had too many occasions to see Mr. Ruby since that time, and of course now implication of many pictures is entering in, so I can't honestly say that I can recall exactly what he did look like that evening. But the facial features are the same.
Mr. HUBERT. Now you did see Ruby again after the 24th ?
Mr. JENKINS. Oh, yes.
Mr. HUBERT. I take it that that was in the court?
Mr. JENKINS. In the trial, and in the hearing. Of course pictures in the paper many times.
Mr. HUBERT. Is it still your belief then from the other opportunities you had to see Ruby, that the man you saw on the two occasions on the 22d was Jack Ruby?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. Now in regard to the first occasion, you stated in the document which has been identified as Exhibit No. 1, that you thought you saw him between


5:30 and 7:30 p.m. on the third floor of the Dallas City Jail. Can you tell us why you fix those times ?
Mr. JENKINS. Well, at 5:30 I had made a report, a telephone report to the station on what was going on at the police station. I had arrived somewhere around 4 o'clock, and a local colleague was already there. I arrived with Jerry Gunkle, who was ordinarily an announcer, but he was filling in as a newsman because of the situation that afternoon. About 5:30 I made a report and asked what time it was, and was told it was 5:30, and the next time that I can recall realizing what time it was, was 7:30 in the evening, due to interviewing people, talking to police officers, trying to get stories, and trying to feed them either to the station or to my control hopper down there.
Mr. HUBERT. What makes you fix this 7:30 hour?
Mr. JENKINS. The same reason. I called the station again and checked what time it was.
Mr. HUBERT. Now then, you think it was between those two time checks that you saw Ruby?
Mr. JENKINS. I would not state it as a fact. I believe it was. I am not positive that it was between those two times, but those are the times that I do recall for that particular afternoon and evening.
Mr. HUBERT. You first went down at 4 o'clock ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. So it could not have been earlier than 4 ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; it could not have been.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you ever leave the third floor? When did you leave the third floor?
Mr. JENKINS. I can't give you an exact time. My reason for leaving the third floor was to go down to the basement assembly room to view Oswald. I believe it was after midnight, if I am not mistaken; it was after midnight.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you leave the third floor at any time during the period between 4 p.m. until you went down to the assembly room?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I did not.
Mr. HUBERT. Then I would ask you why it is that you have stated that you think it is between 5:30 and 7:30 that you saw Ruby there ?
Mr. JENKINS. Well, it was earlier in the evening, I am quite sure of that, because I know I spent quite a few hours after 7:30 mainly in the auto theft department, which is just outside the pressroom, and in the pressroom itself. I was talking to officers there. I was doing some phone calling from in there. Most of the pressroom phones were busy all evening long, and I have some friends in the auto theft department. I don't know them by name exactly, but I have had contact with them, and it turned out this became my best source of information as a newsman was just to more or less stay in there and make interoffice calls from time to time on their telephone. I found out I could find out more that way because there wasn't a lot of commotion. It was close to Chief Curry's office and the homicide office.
Mr. HUBERT. Well, there was quite a crowd on the third floor, as I understand?
Mr. JENKINS. It was packed.
Mr. HUBERTS. Do you recall what Ruby was doing when you saw him?
Mr. JENKINS. The only thing I can recall is, he was talking to somebody. I would suppose a newsman, I don't know. I don't know who he was talking to.
Mr. HUBERT. Was there anything that directed your attention to him particularly ?
Mr. JENKINS. Only that there were very few people around the elevator shaft. Most of them were gathered around the cameras that were set up right in the intersection, and then slightly past as you get off of the elevator, and most of the newsmen were just lined two and three deep down the hallway back toward the homicide department as you go left coming off the elevator, and also were gathered around the cameras there talking, and at that moment I was going by. There were only two people, this man who I believe to be Ruby, and another man, a taller man, and I can't really describe what he looked like.
Mr. HUBERT. Was he in uniform or civilian clothes ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; in civilian clothes.


Mr. HUBERT. I am talking about the other man.
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; seems to me a dark suit, but everybody was wearing dark suits.
Mr. HUBERT. Did he have a hat on ?
Mr. HUBERT. But you don't know who that was?
Mr. HUBERT. How close to the elevator shaft was Ruby and the other man?
Mr. JENKINS. Well, they were along the wall near, I believe, the women's restroom, about halfway from the elevator door to the corridor, to the cross corridor I mean. I would say probably about 7 feet, maybe.
Mr. HUBERT. Was any policeman at that time guarding or checking identification at the elevator door or at the staircase?
Mr. JENKINS. No; not to my recollection. Of course I didn't go down.
Mr. HUBERT. I mean when you saw Ruby talking to this other man or the man you believe to be talking to the other man, were there also policemen there?
Mr. JENKINS. Not in that immediate vicinity. Not that I recall; no.
Mr. HUBERT. Was that the only time you saw him at the early part of the afternoon?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; that's right. At the moment, I was on the way down to the snackbar to get a cup of coffee.
Mr. HUBERT. Would that help you fix the time?
Mr. JENKINS. I don't think so; not exactly.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you have any supper that night?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; I did. I had a hamburger. I had a cold one. It was left over from somewhere. Quite a few had been brought up, I think, and I was with Lieutenant May of the auto theft department, and he offered me a hamburger. This was considerably later. I would say probably 10 or 11 o'clock, I don't know. And he offered me a hamburger, and it was left over, and I took it.
Mr. HUBERT. Where was the snackbar?
Mr. JENKINS. It is as you go up into the third floor, go toward the Chief's office and the dispatch office.
Mr. HUBERT. You didn't have to leave the floor ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; in fact, it was right beside that intersection which I have been telling you about.
Mr. HUBERT. When you came back from getting the coffee, did you observe Ruby there?
Mr. JENKINS. I didn't look. I went straight back through. I was going back to talk to my colleagues to see if there was anything else they found out.
Mr. HUBERT. Do you recall whether you had more than one cup of coffee that day?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; considerably more than one cup.
Mr. HUBERT. Was it dark when you saw him, do you know? Dark outside?
Mr. JENKINS. I couldn't say. There was not a window in the area. I could not tie that in with any part of the observation.
Mr. HUBERT. Well, let's get at it this way. You came on at 4 o'clock?
Mr. HUBERT. You have fixed the earliest time apparently that you could have seen him at 5:30, and the latest at 7:30, which seems that you saw him not sooner than an hour and a half after you came on, and not later than 3 1/2 hours after you came on. Using these relative time measures, does that assist you in fixing the time? For example, would you be willing to state that you did not see Ruby sooner than an hour and a half after you came on duty ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; I think definitely I would state that, because for about the first hour and a half, perhaps even 2 hours, I stayed primarily in the pressroom. I was doing the main part of phone reports to the station, because we had a phone and were trying to keep it, and also we were trying to keep a running account of what was happening. This is strictly now an estimate of time. As I say, I only recall asking the time twice, and I don't ever recall looking at


the clock or at my watch until about the time we were ready to go home. It seems like it was 1:15 or 1:30.
Mr. HUBERT. You say when you went to get the coffee it was after you had made the 5:30 check of time?
Mr. JENKINS. Oh, yes; definitely.
Mr. HUBERT. How much after?
Mr. JENKINS. That would be next to impossible to say. It could have been half an hour or 45 minutes, perhaps.
Mr. HUBERT. And it could have been as long as 2 hours afterward, which would have fixed the time of seeing Ruby at 7:30?
Mr. JENKINS. Could have been; yes. I think it was before the 7:30 time, because it just seems like it was, as I remember, before the 7:30 check.
Mr. HUBERT. In other words, it was sooner than 3 1/2 hours after you came on duty ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes; I would say that is a safe estimate.
Mr. HUBERT. So that really, the best you can do for us in between 5:30 and 7:30, but you feel fairly certain that those limits at least are accurate?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. You say that Ruby was not carrying anything when you saw him at the first occasion; right?
Mr. JENKINS. I don't recall him carrying anything at all. I don't remember anything in his hands, as a matter of fact.
Mr. HUBERT. Later that day you went to the press conference, whatever time that was?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. When you were in the assembly room, did you see Jack Ruby in the assembly room ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HUBERT. When you saw Jack Ruby in the assembly room, did you have the mental impression that you had seen that man earlier that day ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I did not.
Mr. HUBERT. It was only later that you related the two occasions that you saw the man you believed to be Jack Ruby ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes, sir; that's correct.
Mr. HUBERT. In other words, when you saw Jack Ruby in the assembly room, you did not go through the mental process of saying, "Oh, this is the man I saw earlier" ?
Mr. JENKINS. No; I did not.
Mr. HUBERT. Was he dressed differently at that time?
Mr. JENKINS. The man I saw then had on what appeared to be a checked sportcoat.
Mr. HUBERT. Did he have a hat?
Mr. JENKINS. No hat. I noticed he was rather light complexioned; and dark hair.
Mr. HUBERT. Did he do or say anything that directed your attention to him?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes. The exact words, I don't recall. I was stationed just inside the door behind the television camera, and this was in front of the cables and closer to the door than most of the newsmen, and I got there on purpose, because Pate and Kunkle were sitting on the floor directly in front of the desk where we figured Henry Wade was going to make his presentation, or whoever was going to speak about Oswald, and also was right in front of the lineup screen. So I stationed myself near the door so I could break first while they were getting tape recordings and interviews, whatever was necessary.
The room was not filled yet with newsmen, but that man whose remark caught my attention, was standing to my left and behind me on a table, and he had a small pad perhaps like a spiral pad in his hand, and there was a girl news correspondent--who she was or who she worked for, I don't know-but he said something to the effect that "Come on up here with me, it will be easier for you to see what is going on. Come on up here. There is room. You won't have to fight the crowd." Something to this effect. I can't give any direct quotes, because it was just something in passing, but I did notice him at the


time, and it seems to me the man was smiling at the time and put his hand down to help the girl get up.
Mr. HUBERT. That is the man you believe to be Jack Ruby ?
Mr. JENKINS. That is the man I believe to be Jack Ruby. In fact, I am more sure of this than of the first person whom I think was Jack Ruby. The image is a lot clearer in my mind.
Mr. HUBERT. Did you hear him say anything else?
Mr. JENKINS. Not after that. I heard nothing. Paid no more attention to him.
It was just a matter of 2 or 3 minutes before the entire room, front end especially, was jampacked with cameramen and newsmen.
Mr. HUBERT. This would have been when Oswald came ?
Mr. JENKINS. Yes. This was before Oswald came in the room.
Mr. HUBERT. All right, Mr. Jenkins, I don't believe that there has been any conversation between us previous to the beginning of the recordation of this deposition which has not subsequently become a part of the deposition, isn't that correct, sir?
Mr. JENKINS. That is correct.
Mr. HUBERT. Thank you very much, sir.
Mr. JENKINS. All right.