SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 Utah) – The National Archives released thousands of documents surrounding President John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Even with their release experts believe the conspiracy theories surrounding his death will continue.
In 1992 congress passed a law which said the documents had to be released by October 26th, and they were at 8 p.m. Carter Livingston is a Utah resident who was also eager to see what they entailed.
“The documents I’ve seen were nothing that surprising,” said Livingston. “It’s interesting that it took this long.”
Livingston has a slightly different perspective because his grandfather, Clifton Carter, was top political aid to Lyndon Johnson. Carter was in the motorcade the day JFK was shot. Livingston later found out from his grandmother what it was like on that day.
“How sad everyone was, everybody on the plane was just sick,” said Livingston. “Their eyes were swollen. It didn’t matter if it was Johnson person,it was just very say.”
The documents didn’t contain real bombshells of information like many expected. Although experts note they highlighted the confusion of investigators days following the assassination.
Local historian Ron Fox said some of the documents speculate about Lee Harvey Oswald’s involvement with the FBI, CIA, or other groups. Fox said just because it was written down doesn’t mean it was founded. It may have been why some of the documents were redacted or held back for so long.
“You’re talking to individuals who will speculate about a person’s motive, about a person’s background,” said Fox. “As they collect things some people are credible and some people aren’t.”
Fox said the documents not being released was one of the major causes of conspiracy theories becoming so common. He also notes investigative reporting, and how people got news was much different.
Even with the recent document release Fox doesn’t believe the conspiracies will go away. Livingston agrees and said the conspiracies which pointed to his grandfather don’t even bother him.
“The conspiracy continues and it doesn’t bother me whatsoever,” said Livingston.
About 300 documents were held back for further review by the FBI and CIA. They have six months to determine if their is information too sensitive that needs to be redacted. Fox believes the majority of the information will be released.