The Clay Shaw trial testimony of Arthur Davis




THE COURT: Are you ready to proceed, Gentlemen?

MR. WILLIAM WEGMANN: Yes, sir. We call Arthur Davis.

ARTHUR Q. DAVIS, a witness called by and on behalf of the Defendant, having been first duly sworn, was examined and testified as follows:

Q: For the record, Mr. Davis, would you please state your full name.

A: Arthur Quinton Davis.

Q: What is your occupation, Mr. Davis?

A: I am an architect.

Q: And with what firm are you connected, sir?

A: Curtis & Davis, Architects.

Q: Mr. Davis, in connection with your business do you have occasion to do much traveling, and more particularly between here and New York City?

A: Yes. I have an office in New York as well as New Orleans, and I make a trip once a week between New Orleans and New York.

Q: (Exhibiting book to witness) Mr. Davis, I show you a book which has been offered in evidence and marked for identification "State-55." Directing your attention to the bottom of the page covering the dates between December 12 and December 14, 1966, I ask you whether your signature appears therein.

A: Yes, the second from the bottom is my signature.

Q: And what is the bottom signature?

A: The second signature from the bottom of the page is my signature.

Q: And what is the name that appears directly below your signature, Mr. Davis?

A: Clay Bertrand.

Q: Now, Mr. Davis, do you recall having been at Moisant Airport on December 14, 1966?

A: Yes, I checked my records and I did go to New York on that day.

Q: Do your records indicate, or do you have any recollection, as to what time you left Moisant Airport or were at Moisant Airport on that date?

A: My records don't indicate that. To the best of my knowledge, it was somewhere midday. I know it wasn't the evening flight.

Q: Mr. Davis, upon the occasion of your being at the airport on that date, did you have occasion to go in the VIP Room?

A: Yes.

Q: Were any other people in there when you were in there?

A: This is the Eastern Airlines?

Q: That is correct, yes.

A: Yes, there were some other gentlemen in there.

Q: Are you acquainted with this Defendant Clay Shaw?

A: Yes.

Q: How long have you known him, sir?

A: Oh, I would think in excess of ten years.

Q: Did you or did you not see Mr. Shaw in the VIP Room of Eastern Airlines on that date, December 14, 1966?

A: No, I did not.

Q: Now, Mr. Davis, in view of the length of time during which you have known Mr. Shaw, would you say that you are generally and reasonably familiar with his manner of dress?

A: Well, as far as the occasions at which I have seen him, I would say that.

Q: Would you term him a conventional, conservative dresser, or otherwise, sir?

A: I don't think I have ever seen him in anything but a business suit.

Q: More specifically, Mr. Davis, have you ever seen Mr. Shaw wearing noticeably tight trousers?

A: No.

MR. DYMOND: We tender the witness.

Q: Mr. Davis, do you recall who you were with in the VIP Room on that day? Were you with anyone, sir?

A: No, I was alone.

Q: And you approximate this to be about midday, is that correct?

A: Yes, but I am not actually sure of the time.

Q: I see. Do you recall whether or not anyone else signed the book in your presence?

A: No, no one else.

Q: Do you recall whether or not the signature Clay Bertrand was in the book when you signed it?

A: I am relatively sure that I was the last signature when I signed.

Q: Did you see anyone sign the book after you signed it?

A: No.

MR. ALCOCK: May I have the book, please?

Q: (Exhibiting book to witness) Mr. Davis, calling your attention to State Exhibit 55, the exhibit from which you just identified your signature, I call your attention to the four names that precede yours, dated on 12/14/66, and I ask you if you know any of those other persons.

A: No.

Q: Calling your attention to the remaining signature on 12/14/66, do you know any of those persons?

A: No.

Q: Do you recall whether or not the book or the lines were filled all the way up until the line that you signed on, on that occasion?

A: I would assume that they would have been although I can't say definitely. I usually would sign the next line that would be open.

Q: You made a practice, Mr. Davis, of signing the VIP book when you go into that room?

A: No, not usually.

Q: Approximately how long did you remain in the room on that day?

A: Well, that is quite some time ago, but if I had to guess -- I usually get out to the airport a little early and I use that room to make phone calls, there is a private phone -- I would guess anywhere from 20 minutes to a half hour.

Q: And you don't recall seeing anyone sign the book while you were there, other than yourself? Is that correct?

A: No.

MR. ALCOCK: No further questions.

MR. DYMOND: That is all, Mr. Davis.

THE COURT: Is Mr. Davis excused from the obligations of the subpoena?

MR. DYMOND: He is.

(Witness excused.)

MR. DYMOND: Your Honor, at this time we would like to call the Defendant Clay L. Shaw.


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