Dec 4, 2013

Chauncey Holt: Multi-talented Man from the U-T

Mysterious San Diego man claims to be 'tramp' at JFK assassination

Conspiracy theory or valid claim?


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Posted: 11/22/2013 
Last Updated: 12 days ago
SAN DIEGO - A San Diego man claimed he was one of the three mysterious "tramps" near Dealey Plaza in Dallas the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated.

Chauncey Holt had many skills -- guns, flying, accounting and more.

Holt said those skills made him valuable to organized crime and, eventually, the CIA.

"He was an artist and according to him, a forger for the CIA. His job was to forge documents," said former Union-Tribune reporter Valerie Alvord.

Her article, a story in Newsweek magazine and Oliver Stone's docu-drama "JFK," all helped to propel Holt into the national spotlight.

Holt claimed to be one of the "three tramps," an important element in many conspiracy theories about the assassination of JFK.

He said his CIA boss sent him to Dallas with counterfeit U.S. Secret Service identification lapel pins and forged Secret Service documents. Holt explained in the documentary the lapels were worn by agents and periodically changed. The pins helped identify an agent to other law enforcement divisions.

His job was to put the "package" into a pickup truck that he said was parked in a secured lot between Dealey Plaza and a nearby railroad yard.

He said he also was instructed should anything go wrong, he was to head to the ninth boxcar in a line of cars at that rail yard, and wait inside the car until he received further instructions.

Holt said he heard the gunfire that killed JFK.

"I didn't actually see the shooting," Holt said in the documentary. "I was 25 yards from the motorcade but I didn't see it."
The 'tramps,' the boxcar and police
When the shots were fired, Holt said he briefly considered heading to the sound of the shots, but he said he ultimately decided to follow his orders and head to the boxcar.

Holt said inside the car, he was joined by two other men. The three of them became known as the "three tramps," he said.

Holt said he knew who the other two men were, but did not know their missions. He said he was sure of one thing -- that they all had something to do with the commotion going on in Deaely Plaza, and the death of the young president.

He recalled that police eventually found them huddled in the boxcar and marched them past news photographers for questioning. The three men were eventually released, no charges filed, and apparently no unanswered questions.

When the media asked the Dallas police what their names were, police said they didn't have the names.

So, was Holt the real deal?

"The problem is, he never told me anything you couldn't find somewhere else if you looked hard enough," Alvord said.

She added that she has a nagging feeling when she thinks of what the Dallas Police did after Holt came forward.

"Chauncey Holt comes out and claims to be the third tramp," Alvord said. "All of a sudden, after all these years, the Dallas police know the identity of the three tramps."

She called it odd and suspicious.

Holt's former CIA job comes out in court

Alvord also said she is stumped by another point.

Holt was on trial for murder in 1985 in Vista. During the murder case, it came out that Holt worked for the CIA. He was found not guilty.

"Chauncey beat the rap, I am not sure how, might have something to do with his CIA connections," Alvord said.

Holt never said he knew who murdered the president, but he died claiming the true story had never been told.

"He believed it was a conspiracy because he was there that day on orders of the CIA, with forged Secret Service documents," Alvord said.
(Editor's note: Team 10 Investigative journalist JW August produced a documentary with Chauncey Holt, called "Spooks, Hoods and the Hidden Elite." The sidebar below is written in the first person by Mr. August to give the reader some additional perspective on Mr. Holt.)
Chauncey Holt -- was he for real?
Impressions of two journalists who met him
Chauncey Holt is an enigma. The Lemon Grove resident may have played a role in the JFK assassination or he could have been be lying. If he was, he was a very good liar.

Holt had approached me to produce a documentary about his experiences, but I was having a hard time believing some of the things I heard about him.

I did know he had been involved in a murder case. I knew he had been the subject of a Newsweek story, which was the result of an article by former Union Tribune reporter Valerie Alvord.

I heard he spent time with Oliver Stone, who directed the movie "JFK."

But I was still uneasy about the project. So over a period of a weeks Holt and I met for lunch.

I could ask any question I wanted to satisfy my curiosity. The discussions focused on the CIA, the mob, and the murder of Kennedy.

I would prepare a line of questioning in advance of our get-togethers. Then, after every meeting, I would go to my car and immediately write down what he said.

I would change up what I would ask and how I would ask it for our next meeting. Or I'd wait a bit and come back to it a couple meetings later.

No matter the approach, he was always spot-on with his responses. He exhibited amazing recall of names, events and dates. The answers were always consistent.

In addition, I found him to be unfailingly polite, soft-spoken and intelligent.

It was hard not to be impressed by him. Which is the same experience Alvord had during her times with Chauncey.

As she told me, "I liked him; I think about him, he was someone you would remember."

I did produce his documentary, not making any judgment about Chauncey or his claims.

I let him tell his story as I promised him I would do.

Eight days after I finished interviewing him, Chauncey Holt died.

I still wrestle with myself internally about the man and what I believe or don't believe.

He was truly an enigma.

copied from the UT

Start my day, every day, with Perry and Della

MeTV--10 AM every morning in San Diego

I watch them every day and I am patterning my life around them.  They are the cutest people I have ever seen in my life.

Today they are going to a nightclub and dancing until dawn.  Perry said "Della, let's create some new memories."

"You're the boss," Della replied, as she had the cutest smile on her face I have ever seen in my life.

Start my day, every day, with my friends Della and Perry.

Larry Hancock Talks David Atlee Phillips

A Broader View

by Larry Hancock
The recent written confirmation from Anthony Veciana that his long time associate Maurice Bishop was indeed CIA officer David Phillips gives me the opportunity not only to write a bit about that revelation but also about how it fits into the much broader picture that we developed with "Shadow Warfare".   Actually there was no doubt in my mind about the identity of Bishop and I think the extensive information developed by Gaeton Fonzi and Tony Summers fully supports the expanded study which I did in my Phillips chapter in SWHT.   Veciana also made it quite clear to Fonzi and others why he would not identify Phillips in his formal testimony without Phillips permission and its clear that he has now only done so following Fonzi's death and out of respect for Gaeton and his wife Marie.
What a good deal of the discussion about Veciana's recent statement is missing however, is that the relationship between the two men started in 1960 inside Cuba and continued for a full decade, with Phillips assisting Veciana to get a USAID position in Latin America in 1968 - even while Veciana was under official INS restriction to Miami's Dade county and should have never have been allowed out of the U.S.  This long term relationship becomes extremely important in two areas that we address in "Shadow Warfare".
First, in the context of Kennedy Administration policies and CIA official  positions, it is clear that Phillips worked with and was in contact inside Cuba with a very well organized revolutionary group which almost did assassinate Fidel Castro in a bazooka attack...only very bad luck on their part saved Castro.  And it appears that Phillips continued to contact and work with Veciana in attempts to kill Castro over the next decade, including one extremely complex plot developed in Chile in 1971. Given that there appears to be no Presidential approval or CIA executive sanction for the ongoing attempts, a serious question is raised as to whether Phillips was pursuing his own private agenda and to what extent the plots were supported by CIA vs. private resources.  There is also a major question about whether or not his superiors were aware of this, to what level within the Agency and to what extent the Agency officially covered up his activities to the Church Committee and HSCA investigations.
That becomes much more critical in terms of Phillip's long term influence on events in Latin America, including his admitted contacts with Louis Posada, Posada's terror attacks and the activities of other CIA related Cuban exiles across South America - something we discuss in great detail in "Shadow Warfare", including Phillips (and David Morales) seminal activities in what became known as the Condor operation.
Another explosive issue raised by Veciana's confirmation is the relationship between the CIA and Alpha 66, which according to Veciana was instigated, funded and directed by Bishop/Phillips.   Exactly who inside the CIA knew that Phillips was helping create Alpha 66 and who knew that he was directing it towards attacks on Russian targets inside Cuba though 62/63 in direct opposition to Kennedy Administration policies and presidential directives?  In "Shadow Warfare", we discuss the issue of CIA rogue action and the real risk posed by decisions by officers who decide to obstruct and subvert administration policies.
In short,  those interested in the Kennedy assassination sometimes come to view people like Phillips, Hecksher, Morales, Shackley, Sforza, Robertson and their Cuban exile associates only in terms of 1963, in "Shadow Warfare" we follow their careers and activities over some 30 years and readers will see there impact on a global scale.  Its a much broader view and we think a much more revealing one.

copied from the blog of Larry Hancock

Thank you, Larry, for all of your hard work and sharing it with

just saying shall we put this together with the recent post from the Boston Globe talking about the suspicions of RFK after JFK was shot?  
Then we will ask Vincent Bugliosi his opinion after that.


links to more info about David Atlee Phillips:

from wiki:

from Spartacus Educational:

from and very interesting comments:

Bill O'Reilly: Punishing in the name of Jesus

The butler of bilge, Bill O'Reilly, loves to try and hide behind Jesus.  This gets into the religion thing--justifying hate with Jesus and religion.  Jesus might love the people Bill wants to deny and judge.  Jesus may even love Bill and let him be a lesson for all of us.  It's confusing but I wish Bill would not try to talk for Jesus because I love Jesus, too.  Bill is tainting my idea of Jesus.  Personally I love Jesus, all religions, atheists; I really love Ron Reagan and cats, and the United States and President Obama---there. 

Are all Catholic men this punishing?

Bill O’Reilly: Jesus is not ‘down with’ food stamps because most poor people are drug addicts (via Raw Story )
No one knows what Jesus would do to feed today’s poor, hungry Americans — but Fox News host Bill O’Reilly is pretty sure the Christian savior wouldn’t be “down with” giving them food stamps because it’s “their fault.” After Rep. Jim…