Is Judyth Baker a Fugitive from Justice?

There is a segment of Nigel Turner's 2003 The Men Who Killed Kennedy entitled The Love Affair. It the piece Judyth Vary Baker claims a romantic involvement between herself and Lee Harvey Oswald. She also professes to have personally known or have been associated with many Kennedy assassination conspirators.

In short Ms. Baker claims (1) based upon her scientific inclination developed at Manatee High School in Florida she would work with "Dr. Mary Sherman and Dr. David Ferrie" in New Orleans in a plot to kill Fidel Castro. They would use "galloping" virulent cancer cells. (2) in return for her research efforts she obtained a promise from Dr. Alton Ochsner that she would "skip two years of school and go directly to Tulane Medical School."

Using a "secret laboratory" set up in the kitchen of David Ferrie's apartment Baker begins what she believed was "a noble experiment."

Announcer: "Judyth, often assisted by Lee helped develop the deadly virus ultimately intended for Castro."

Baker's job was to study the results of cancer cells that had been previously injected into and growing in white mice.

Baker: "The lumps and tumors were as large as these little mice."

She explains that the mice were killed and the "heaviest" and "fastest growing" tumors were excised and "all the tumor material that came to be most vigorous was placed in a blender and blended together so they could recycle and not lose that virus."

Judyth then took these materials and her reports to the apartment of Dr. Mary Sherman. Sherman, Baker indicated, used Oswald as "a secret go between."

Baker: "[Oswald] was able to actually move materials over to the U.S. Public Health Center over near the Crippled Children's Hospital where often Mary Sherman would meet him. And they were exchanging materials all the time. They were using a Linear Particle Accelerator, you know, atomic radiation to change the genetic components in the virus that we were working with. I was never there myself personally but I understood that what I was getting was altered genetically in certain ways."

Announcer: "Lee (Oswald) was fired (from Reily Coffee Company) on a pretext and Judyth soon followed because of her associations with him. But her hard work at the lab had paid off. The cancer virus required just one final test before its' dispatch to Cuba."

Baker: "It was made clear to me and I felt very badly about it that human volunteers, so called, would have to be relied upon to test the materials."

Baker (choked with emotion): "When this was made . . . when I realized that this was happening I had some ethical objections."

Announcer: "The plan was to bring prisoners to this Louisiana mental hospital (East Louisiana State Hospital) from Angola Penitentiary - 30 miles away. Here they would be injected with the cancer virus created to kill Castro to prove its' effectiveness."

Baker: "Well I did something I had been told not to do. I wrote a note to Doctor Ochsner and I signed it with my initials J.V. (Judyth Vary) And in it I protested the use of human beings at this stage in the project under the grounds that these were unwitting volunteers. They were not aware that they were going to be injected with live cancer cells. And the goal was to kill them with it. And of course they were going to be volunteering for that. So I did object and Ochsner called me on the phone and he was furious."

"And he said I never should have written anything that was linked to me by any kind of paper or handwriting or anything. If I had any objections I should have told him in person and he said at any time that both Lee and I were expendable. And then he slammed the phone down. By expendable he meant it was very clear to me and Lee both that they could get rid of us at any time if we were going to cause problems - because this was a project that was much, much bigger than any little Lee Oswald or any little Judy Baker."

Announcer: "So in late August (1963) Oswald and (David) Ferrie arrived in the small town of Clinton 130 miles from New Orleans in a black Cadillac driven by Clay Shaw. Here they met a hospital orderly and awaited phone instructions on where to join the prison convoy on route from Angola bringing the volunteers to the nearby mental hospital at Jackson."

Baker: "It was necessary for David Ferrie to make the initial injections. There's a doctor up there who would be taking it on. But he had to be shown how to handle the materials. That was the first thing and David knew how to do injections. Secondly, Lee had to come along because he had learned all these special techniques to handle the materials. He'd learned them in the lab working with me."

"And so if the experiment was successful, he was selected as the ideal person to take these materials down to Mexico City where they would be handed over to a contact, a medical student or a medical technician, and those materials would then be taken over to Cuba and handed over in Cuba to a member of Castro's medical team who could be trusted."

"That's why Lee Oswald had to be there. Lee Oswald, the orderly, and Clay Shaw and of course David Ferrie entered into Jackson Mental Hospital behind the vehicle that was transporting these prisoners here that were going to be injected. In they all went at the same time. The orderly that was with them that they picked up outside of Clinton showed them where to go - inside. And at that time the prisoners received the injections that were necessary to being this terrible round of injections and x-ray injections that they hoped would actually kill these people."

Cut to commercial

In his previous The Men Who Killed Kennedy production released in 1988 Nigel Turner allowed some measure of embellishment and exaggeration. I presume Baker could claim to be the victim of similar liberties. However these are on camera statements attributable only to her and are therefore her responsibly. In particular:

"And in it I protested the use of human beings at this stage in the project under the grounds that these were unwitting volunteers. They were not aware that they were going to be injected with live cancer cells. And the goal was to kill them with it." (Emphasis mine)

Based upon that statement considering there is no Statute of Limitations on murder does the following come into play with respect to Ms. Baker?

Accessory before the fact. One who orders, counsels, encourages, or otherwise aids and abets another to commit a felony and who is not present at the commission of the offense. Com. V. Leach, 45 PA. 448, 317 A.2d 293, 294.

Accessory during the fact. One who stands by without interfering or giving such help as may be in his power to prevent the commission of a criminal offense.

Accessory after the fact. A person who, knowing a felony to have been committed by another, receives, relieves, comforts or assists the felon, in order to enable him to escape from punishment, or the like. Robinson v. State, 5Md.App. 723, 249 A.2d 504, 507; 18 U.S.C.A. 3.

Henry Black, Black's Law Dictionary (St. Paul, Minn: West Publishing Co.)


I have considered many of Ms. Baker's claims outlandish. However, she is an adult and therefore responsible for her conduct. Maybe someone with a background in criminal law can answer the following:

Is she not, based upon her admitted actions, an accessory before, during, and after the fact in a criminal enterprise to kill people who are "unwitting volunteers?"

Copyright 2014 by David B. Perry All rights reserved