Dallas Law Enforcement: Voices from History

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Oak Cliff

Police at Oak Cliff
Dallas Times Herald Collection

Around 1:15 p.m. in the Oak Cliff section south of downtown Dallas, Officer J.D. Tippit was shot and killed near the corner of Tenth and Patton streets. An eyewitness, using the radio in Tippit's squad car, alerted police to the murder. Initially unaware that there was any connection to the president's shooting, investigators arrived at the scene to gather evidence and pursue the gunman.

Following a tip that a suspicious-looking individual had entered the nearby Texas Theatre on Jefferson Boulevard without buying a ticket, Dallas police entered the movie house and ordered that the lights be turned on. Officer M. N. McDonald approached the suspicious person. Following a scuffle, he and several officers arrested the man, who turned out to be Lee Harvey Oswald.

In police custody within 80 minutes of the president's assassination, Oswald was taken to Homicide Captain Will Fritz's office at Dallas police headquarters, which was part of Dallas City Hall in 1963.