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Lost JFK Assassination Documents Believed Found in Dallas Courthouse

A suspect transcript of a conversation between John F. Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald and Jack Ruby, the man who killed Oswald, are among the treasure trove of items found in an old safe at the Dallas County District Attorney's Office.

Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins presented the items at a news conference Monday. Watkins says they were locked in a safe for nearly two decades and that investigators had made him aware of them after he took office in 2006.

Much of the attention focuses on the transcript purporting that Ruby and Oswald met at Ruby's nightclub on Oct. 4, 1963, less than two months before the Nov. 22 assassination. In it, they talked of killing the president because the Mafia wanted to "get rid of" his brother, Attorney General Robert Kennedy.

The items also include Ruby's brown leather gun holster, two brass knuckles found on Ruby when he was arrested and a movie contract former Dallas District Attorney Henry Wade signed.

There are also letters to Ruby, records from his trial, a gun holster and clothing that probably belonged to Ruby and Oswald, District Attorney Craig Watkins told the Associated Press.

Terri Moore, Watkins' top assistant, said she believes the latest transcript is part of a movie Wade was working on with producers. The former prosecutor wrote about the proposed movie, "Countdown in Dallas," in letters found in the safe.

"It's not real. Crooks don't talk like that," Moore said. "If that transcript is true, then history is changed because Oswald and Ruby were talking about assassinating the president."

Gary Mack, curator of the Sixth Floor Museum near where the president was shot, hasn't seen the transcript but doubts it's real. It is well-documented that Oswald was in Irving the evening of Oct. 4, at a home where his wife was staying, Mack said.

"The fact that it's sitting in Henry Wade's file, and he didn't do anything, indicates he thought it wasn't worth anything," Mack said. "He probably kept it because it was funny. It's hilarious. It's like a bad B movie."

The transcript resembles one published in a report by the Warren Commission, which investigated Kennedy's assassination and determined that Oswald was the lone gunman. The FBI determined that conversation between Oswald and Ruby about killing the governor was definitely fake.

The account in the commission report was "re-created" for authorities by a now-deceased Dallas attorney who claimed he recognized Oswald in a newspaper photo as the man he saw talking to Ruby.

It's unknown whether the boxes Watkins and others found in the courthouse about a year ago have information previously undisclosed to the public or the Warren Commission.

The search began after Watkins was told the gun used to kill Oswald was somewhere in the courthouse. They didn't find the gun, which Mack said is privately owned. The boxes probably sat in the safe since being moved when the courthouse opened in 1989.

The items are still being processed and eventually will be donated to an entity that can authenticate them, preserve them and make them available to the public, Watkins said.

"It's interesting, and it's not ours," Watkins said. "It's the public's."

The curious, two-page document is dated Oct. 4, 1963. The conversation is supposedly between Oswald and Ruby, who shot and killed Oswald two days after JFK was killed. The transcript — which refers to Oswald by his first name — reads, in part:

Lee: You said the boys in Chicago want to get rid of the Attorney General.

Ruby: Yes, but it can't be done ... it would get the Feds into everything.

Lee: There is a way to get rid of him without killing him.

Ruby: How's that?

Lee: I can shoot his brother.

...

Ruby: But that wouldn't be patriotic.

Lee: What's the difference between shooting the Governor and in shooting the President?

Ruby: It would get the FBI into it.

Lee: I can still do it, all I need is my rifle and a tall building; but it will take time, maybe six months to find the right place; but I'll have to have some money to live on while I do the planning."

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.