Document release planned in JFK assassination, but some want them kept secret

Quick Facts:

  • Thousands of top secret documents could be released
  • They could share new details in the assassination of President John F Kennedy
  • Some intelligence agencies want the documents kept classified
  • President Trump makes the final call

Those alive on Nov. 22, 1963 know exactly where they were when John F Kennedy died.

Even those born in the decades after saw the images and learned about the tragic day.

More than 50 years after the president's assassination, more than 3,000 documents remain classified "top secret", locked away in the National Archives.

By law, all documents related to the investigation must be unsealed and public by October. Recently, several new documents were released, but the final, still secret batch remains a mystery.

New York Times reporter Philip Shenon, who wrote a book on the subject says intelligence agencies want President Trump to keep the files secret.

"Only one person has the ability to stop the release of these documents under the law," he said. "Tht's the president of the United States."

FOX23's Justin Gray asked Shenon why government officials might want these old documents classified. Shenon said there are many theories.

"I think it may show just much more bungling there had been by the government before the assassination, and how Kennedy's life should have been saved," Shenon said. "Many people who might arguably be involved in what might be thought of as a cover up are still quite prominent in America."

Others say the assassination is more than just a 20th century mystery to be debated by history buffs.

"Why in 2017 should people care about this" said Andrew Kreig at the Justice Integrity Project. "Because it's the Rosetta Stone to current affairs."

The files, Kreig said, offer a look into how the FBI, CIA and other agencies investigate present-day, high-profile cases, which is why seeing those documents remains important.

"Whatever one's view is, go to the evidence," Kreig said.

Gray reached out to the White House for response.

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