.c The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) - "Says nothing against Pres. ... denies shooting Pres.''
The handwritten notes of the Dallas police homicide chief who questioned Lee Harvey Oswald were released Thursday, two days before the 34th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination.
The notes, which the late police Capt. J.W. "Will'' Fritz indicated he made several days after the interrogation, supported key points made by Fritz during his testimony before the Warren Commission in 1964.
Fritz, who died in 1984, told the commission that Oswald, under interrogation, denied assassinating Kennedy, denied owning a rifle and contended a famous photograph of him holding a rifle in his Dallas back yard was a forgery.
Likewise, Fritz wrote in his notes that Oswald "denies owning rifle in garage or elsewhere. ... Says I made picture super imposed.''
Fritz was Oswald's primary interrogator while he was in police custody from the afternoon of Nov. 22, 1963, when the president was assassinated, until the morning of Nov. 24, 1963, when Oswald was killed by Jack Ruby.
The notes, released by the Assassination Records Review Board, are only the second set of original, handwritten notes from the interrogation that have surfaced in 34 years. Earlier this year, the board released notes made by former FBI agent James P. Hosty Jr., who also questioned Oswald.
The notes are valuable because Oswald's interrogation was not taped and no stenographer was present, said Tom Samoluk, the board's deputy director. Fritz told the commission he had requested a tape recorder for police use but had not received it by the time of the assassination.
"After more than 30 years ... we've got the primary player, the law enforcement official in charge of interrogating Oswald,'' Samoluk said.
The notes, scrawled on five sheets of paper, are filled with abbreviations and snippets of Oswald's responses to police questions.
In addition to denying that he carried out the assassination or owned a rifle, Oswald appeared to contradict himself by telling police he had no political beliefs but supported Fidel Castro's communist revolution in Cuba.
The notes stated: "says lived Russia 3 yrs. ... claims no political belief ... says supports Castro Rev. ... speaks Russian ... denies belonging to Com party.'' Oswald, who espoused a pro-communist philosophy, defected to Russia in 1959.
Oswald also misrepresented his military record, the notes showed.
The notes say: "school in Ft W. - to Marines says got usual medals.'' In fact, Oswald was court-martialed twice by the Marine Corps, which changed his honorable discharge to an "undesirable'' discharge after his defection.
The notes were discovered among some of Fritz's belongings, which were donated to the board. Samoluk said the donor wished to remain anonymous.
The notes will be included in a public record of Kennedy assassination materials compiled at the National Archives in College Park, Md.