BILLINGS - Two Montana authors who have spent years researching the killing of the nation's 35th president say don't expect any bombshells out of the newly released government documents on the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
That's because the bombshell people have been waiting for was already exposed in their book "Phantom Shot." MTN News first spoke with Mike Majerus and Jack Nessan four years ago, when the two life-long friends first published "Phantom Shot."
Their book concludes that not only was Lee Harvey Oswald the sole assassin of President Kennedy, but he fired only two shots.
"We thought that once we put this out, there would be other people who have studied this for 35 to 40 years who would go - yeah that's gotta be right," Majerus said.
But that hasn't been the case. In fact, with the National Archives in the process of releasing thousands of JFK documents, the conspiracies are flourishing. Just one problem: these co-authors say none of those conspiracies hold water.
"You start looking at these conspiracies, and as they start getting stronger and stronger, then they just dead end," Nessan said.
A third shot is important because nearly all the conspiracy theories about JFK's murder revolve around one.
"The more we look into this, the more questions people ask us, the more research we do on it, the more we keep coming back to there's one thing that answers everything," said Majerus.
"It's that there were only two shots. It's like E=mc2. It's such a simple thing, yet it answers everything," Majerus explained.
Majerus and Nessan's phantom-shot theory is based on the fact that one of the three empty shell casings found in Oswald's sixth floor sniper's nest was dented in such a way that it simply could not have held a bullet that day.
"The first guy that picked that shell casing up, he looked at it and there was a dent in the rim and his first thought was this couldn't have possibly been used today," Majerus said.
"There's no way a bullet.would have fit in the shell casing because that dent was too big," said Majerus.
They believe the denting was caused by Oswald dry-firing the weapon, a common practice to keep the firing pin from breaking.
It's clear evidence that Majerus and Nessan want to see for themselves.
"There's only been four people ever to be granted access to it who weren't in the government, we want to be number five and six," said Majerus.
As they await word on their request from the Archives, Majerus and Nessan are combing through the latest batch of JFK documents, looking for anything that could rest their case once and for all.
"The reason we don't think there are any bombshells, is we don't think there's a conspiracy. So how could there possibly be evidence in these documents of a conspiracy, because there wasn't one," Majerus said."
A new edition of "Phantom Shot" was released within the past few weeks, complete with a new cover and a new chapter on the reporters who were in Dealey Plaza during the assassination.
In the meantime, Nessan and Majerus are working on a new book that sheds new light on unsolved murders in Montana.
"Phantom Shot" is available on Amazon.com; Barnes and Noble.com and other online bookstores.