Martin Luther King – Sniper in the Shrubbery?

If Ray did not shoot Martin Luther King from the boarding house bathroom window, where did the shot come from?

One witness sitting in front of the bank of trees — the same trees that would have blocked Ray’s view from his alleged sniper’s nest — said he heard a rifle fire directly behind him at ground level, not from the boarding house.

Other witnesses also reported hearing the shot from ground level. Two people at the fire station nearby reported that a boy ran in and told them a similar story, but he left before police could question him.

Martin Luther King’s chauffeur, as well as some of his aides who were standing on the balcony with Martin Luther King, all testified that Martin Luther King appeared to have been lifted physically off the ground. This is inconsistent with a shot from the boarding house bathroom, but consistent with a shot originating from the ground below the boarding house window. It is possible that Ray, like his lone-nut cousin Oswald, had a doppleganger. Ray allegedly escaped in a white Mustang, but several witnesses reported seeing two white Mustangs on the street on April 4.

People in the neighborhood said Ray “stood out” in the seedy area because he wore a suit. The driver of the other Mustang might have been a man in a similar suit seen several times eating at Jim’s Grill near the Motel Lorraine. This mystery man became known as the “eggs and sausages” man, because he started showing up shortly before the assassination and always ordered eggs and sausages. On April 4, 1968, the “eggs and sausages” man ate his usual fare, paid his tab and left the cafe.

A few minutes later, Martin Luther King lay dying. Police picked up the “eggs and sausages” man for questioning after diners at the cafe reported what had happened, but he was never booked on suspicion of being involved with Martin Luther King’s death.

In March, 1994, Betty Spates, a former employee of Jim’s Grill, signed an affidavit stating that restaurant owner Lloyd Jowers “came running through the back door” carrying a rifle just moments after the assassination. He then placed the rifle, broken down into its component pieces, in the trunk of his car. Jowers purportedly told Spates he would kill her if she ever told anyone what she’d seen. Although he is serving time for the crime, Ray denies that he personally killed Martin Luther King. However, he says that he may have been partly, but unwittingly, responsible. He claims he was duped into a gun-running scheme by a mysterious man with CIA and mafia contacts named “Raoul.” The gun-running scheme enabled Raoul to manipulate Ray into position as the conspiracy’s patsy.

Ray was not apprehended until June 8, after traveling from Memphis to Toronto to London to Portugal and back to London, where he was arrested at Heathrow Airport while en route to Belgium. While taMartin Luther King his tour of Canada and Europe, Ray spent $25,000, even though he had no known source of income. So who was the trigger man? Researcher Philip Melanson suggests that “Raoul” may actually be a man named Jules Ricco Kimble, currently serving two life sentences for racketeering and murder. Kimble, an associate of the Ku Klux Klan and New Orleans mob boss Carlos Marcello, claims that he knew James Earl Ray and that he took part in a conspiracy to assassinate Martin Luther King.

According to Kimble, Ray was a patsy, and the real assassins were a team of seven men from the CIA, three disguised as Memphis police, one of whom shot Martin Luther King from below the boarding house bathroom window. Regardless of whether Kimble’s story is true, witnesses heard a shot from ground level at the same location as the alleged CIA sniper, and the only witness who placed Ray at the boarding house bathroom window at the time of the murder was Charles Stephens, an alcoholic who, according to another witness, was “peeing in some bushes” when the fatal shot rang out.

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