Fool Me Once Shame On You

Fool Me Twice Shame On Me

Each year within the research community there is great interest in who will appear at the ASK symposium in Dallas. While reading the September 5, 1993 Cleburne, Texas Times-Review I concluded ASK representative J. Gary Shaw had discovered a blockbuster guest. The newspaper article revealed, in October of 1992 while Shaw was at the JFK Assassination Information Center in Dallas, he had been contacted by Karen Carlin, a.k.a. Little Lynn. Carlin, one of Jack Ruby's strippers, was not only employed by Ruby the week of the assassination but was the recipient of Ruby's infamous Western Union money order. Ruby transmitted the money to Carlin shortly before he shot and killed Oswald. This event has been used by anti-conspiracy theorists as proof Ruby's act was not premeditated.

There was a problem, however. Many years ago,1966 to be exact, Shaw's close personal friend and fellow assassination researcher Penn Jones Jr. declared Ms. Carlin dead. On page 174 of his self published Forgive My Grief I Jones maintained Carlin was killed by "gunshot wounds in the head in Houston." I wondered how Mr. Shaw was going to resolve this inconsistency.

During my research into the Kennedy assassination I have been baffled by some of the stories put forward by Penn Jones Jr. A man the Cleburne Times-Review proclaims "the guiding light of assassination researchers." In tracing his narratives concerning Lee Bowers' mysterious death, Buell Frazier's relationship with John Crawford and the revelations of Roger Craig there were, in my view, many dilemmas. Additionally, as the Ricky White episode unfolded I developed doubts about the abilities of his chief protege and ASK emissary, J. Gary Shaw. In the case at hand was Carlin alive and Jones wrong or was Shaw contacted by an imposter?

To me, a weak and disturbing attempt to resolve these issues appeared in the Cleburne Times-Review of September 30, 1993. That publication contained an article by staff reporter Pete Kendall. The title of the piece was "Solved Mystery - Death notice of stripper concocted by Penn Jones." It seems Mr. Jones revealed to his wife that he invented the Karen Carlin death notice in Forgive My Grief I. Jones' wife claimed "Whoever it was told Penn that for her (Carlin's) sake he was to say she was dead. She was going into the government protection plan."

Even the editor of the Times-Review found this new revelation hard to swallow. The paper immediately points out the government had no witness protection plan in place at the time Jones faked Carlin's death. I also found it curious Jones exhibited a touching concern for Carlin's safety when without proof, he labeled her a "Ruby prostitute" on page 102 of Forgive My Grief III.

Kendall professes Jones "was recently hospitalized and suffers from memory lapses." This is not a contemporary event. In earlier years, a healthy Mr. Jones was unable to remember the name of the ambulance driver (Noel Coward) who removed the severely injured Lee Bowers from the scene of his accident. Jones was incapable of recalling the name of the doctor (R.H. Bohl) who treated Bowers at Waxahachie Hospital. He failed to reveal how preposterous his story of a one year old Buell Frazier meeting with his twenty two year old '"lifelong friend" John Crawford was.

The Times-Review article does not give the date Jones confessed this current distortion of the facts to his wife. However, even then he was silent as to the name of the government "whoever" that requested the death notice be published. His continual forgetfulness makes it difficult to verify the accuracy of his anecdotes.

Additionally Mr. and Mrs. Jones expose the researchers Mr. Jones has deceived. Included in the list are Sylvia Meagher, Robert Groden and Harrison Livingstone. I believe it is time for researchers attending the ASK symposium to interrogate Mr. Shaw carefully. If Ms. Carlin appears Shaw should be required to provide proof positive his witness is just who he claims she is. Why? This is not the first time Jones or Shaw have created problems for serious investigators of the assassination.

In 1992 when I was working on my Third Decade article on the Lee Bowers' story, I interviewed Noel Coward's wife as well as Doctor Ray Bohl. Both indicated Jones had misrepresented Coward's and Bohl's roles in the Bowers' case. Sadly but somewhat fortuitously, Jones has admitted he is not above fabrication. As for J. Gary Shaw, in the Times-Review article of September 5, 1993 he distances himself from the JFK Assassination Information Center.

"I was not the director of the JFK Assassination Information Center at that time. I had resigned from that position in February,1991."

Many of you will remember he WAS director when the Roscoe White story broke through the Center's August 6, 1990 press conference. In Oliver Stone's book JFK The Documented Screenplay on page 19, Stone declares:

"In what appears to be nothing more than a publicity seeking hoax, a Texas group that included White's son and widow presented 'evidence' in 1990 that White was the real assassin behind the picket fence."

The JFK Assassination Information Center tuned much of that "evidence" over to the Texas Attorney General's office. On February 2,1991 through the Austin American-Statesman the Attorney General officially closed the Roscoe White case and issued the following statement::

"So far everything we have looked at has not given any credibility to anything these people have been trying to say about the documents and that whole affair."

It is ironic that the JFK Assassination Information Center is a sponsor of Mr. Shaw's ASK symposium. The research community makes some strange bedfellows indeed.

Copyright 1993 by David B. Perry    All rights reserved

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