Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Assassination Documents
A selection of King assassination documents. The files include some previously lost files. The lost files are the James Earl Ray public defender files, a collection of correspondences to and from James Earl Ray, and a set of photos dealing with the custody of Ray. The other documents include a Scotland Yard report, audio excepts from the Memphis Police Department radio dispatch at the time of the assassination and the Memphis Police Department homicide report.
The lost documents were discovered in 2007, at a Shelby County Archives warehouse, where they were misplaced during the process of having them microfilmed. The Public Defender office of Shelby County blocked public release of the material due to lawyer-client privilege. The PD office cleared the documents for release in 2011. James Earl Ray in the late 1970's signed a release that allowed all his defense material to be made public.
Excerpts from Memphis Police Department Dispatch Tape 6:01pm – 6:55pm
MPDMLKDispacth.mp3 (17 KB)
SCOTAND YARD REPORT
Scotland Yard Report on the apprehension of James Earl Ray in London and his return to the United States
James Earl Ray was captured in London two months after the shooting.
SYRayFile.pdf (3 MB)
James Earl Ray Public Defender's office file
RayPDFile.pdf (157 MB)
James Earl Ray Correspondences
A collection letters written by James Earl Ray to and from his lawyers and family during the eight months he spent in Shelby County Jail before pleading guilty to the murder of Martin Luther King.
RayLetters.pdf (8 MB)
James Earl Ray Custody Photos
A collection of photos taken at the direction of Shelby Country Sheriff Bill Morris. The folder with these photos also included photos received from the Los Angeles County Sheriff Department of Sirhan Sirhan in custody. Sheriff Morris wanted to see the practices of the LA Sheriff Department's handling of the assassin of Senator Robert Kennedy. Sheriff Morris was concern over the possibility of Ray being killed while in custody, as Lee Harvey Oswald was in 1963.
RayCustodyPhotos.pdf (17 MB)
Memphis Police Department Homicide Report
MPDMLKHomicide.pdf (17 MB)
Other Collection with Martin Luther King Material:
Martin Luther King Jr. FBI Files
Viola Liuzzo Murder - Alabama KKK – FBI File
Clyde Tolson/J. Edgar Hoover FBI Files
Hugh Hefner - Playboy Magazine - FBI Files