Who Killed Robert Kennedy?
Fifty years ago, United States Senator Robert F Kennedy was assassinated at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles just moments after he’d won California’s Democratic presidential primary. More than 50 years on, questions about witness testimony, hidden evidence and true identity of Kennedy’s killer remain.
Sirhan Bishara Sirhan, a Palestinian with Jordanian citizenship, was arrested at the scene of the shooting in what the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) thought was an open-and-shut case. Sirhan was tried and jailed for Robert Kennedy’s murder. But since the 1970s, there have been calls for a new investigation into the assassination, based on differing witness accounts, the number of shots fired and distance of Sirhan from Kennedy when he fired. Kennedy’s wounds suggest his assassin – or assassins – stood behind him, but eyewitnesses place Sirhan about a metre away and almost in front of him.
This has led to suggestions that a second gunman may have fired the fatal shot, a theory supported by Chief Medical Examiner-Coroner for the County of Los Angeles, Thomas Noguchi, who stated in his report that the shot that killed Kennedy was fired at the point-blank range next to his right ear. Witness accounts and more recent forensic analysis support the view that more bullets were fired at the scene than Sirhan could have had in his gun. Robert Kennedy’s death, like the 1963 assassination of his older brother, President John F Kennedy, has been the subject of many conspiracy theories.