The Jeffrey MacDonald Information Site is a compendium of information about the Jeffrey MacDonald case. MacDonald was convicted in 1979 of the murders of his pregnant wife and two small daughters. He is serving three life sentences for that brutal crime.


The Murders of Colette, Kimberley and Kristen MacDonald
 

The Jeffrey MacDonald Information Site is a compendium of information about the Jeffrey MacDonald case. MacDonald was convicted in 1979 of the murders of his pregnant wife and two small daughters. He is serving three life sentences for that brutal crime.

ARTICLE 32 HEARING TRANSCRIPTS
August 12, 1970: Mrs. Jan Snyder

 

(The hearing reconvened at 1545 hours, 12 August 1970.)

COL ROCK: This hearing will come to order. Those parties who were present at the beginning of the recess are currently in the hearing room. I'd like to announce at this time that Mrs. Jan Snyder has made herself available as a witness and this has been called to my attention.
As you counsel will recall this morning, I stated that I wanted her here if at all possible and she has come of her own volition, apparently as a result of listening to a radio broadcast. I am introducing Mrs. Snyder as my witness. Both counsel will have right of cross-examination, beginning with counsel for the government followed by counsel for the accused. Would you please ask Mrs. Snyder to step in?

(Mrs. Jan Snyder was called as a witness by the investigating officer and testified as follows.)

Questions by COL ROCK:
Q Please state your name and current address.
A Jan Snyder, Fairmont.
Q Is that in North Carolina?
A Fairmont, North Carolina.
Q Did you and your husband reside at Fort Bragg in February 1970?
A Yes, sir.
Q At what address?
A I've forgotten. It was on Castle Drive. I've forgotten the number.
Q Would a number like 300 or 306 or 308 be in the area? Does that refresh your memory?
A Yes. 308 Castle Drive.
Q During the night of 16-17 February, do you recall anything unusual occurring?
A Yes. I was awakened very early or sometime during the night by an unusual -- I guess a car or something. It was enough to arouse me that I did get out of bed and go to the window and look.
Q And what did you see?
A Nothing. It was just -- I think it was car by, down -- and I saw the tail lights, and I thought perhaps it was just, you know, someone turning around or -- real fast, or something. It was enough that I did get up out of bed.
Q I see. Approximately what time was this?
A I have no idea.
Q Did you hear any voices at that time?
A I don't remember. I can't say.
Q Did you hear any people running?
A I really don't know.
Q Did you see anyone?
A No, sir.
Q Had you previously been awakened at night by similar noises?
A Yes, anything obvious loud or obvious unusual.
Q And do you normally go to the window to look out if it is an outside noise?
A No, sir.
Q Was your husband at home that evening?
A Yes, sir.
Q Did you awaken him?
A I don't recall.

COL ROCK: I have no further questions. Cross-examine, counsel for the government.

Questions by CPT SOMERS:
Q Is this the only incident that woke you that evening?
A Yes, sir.
Q Did you have an occasion to relate the details of this incident to CPT Chester or Mrs. Chester? Well, first let me ask you, did you know Captain and Mrs. Chester?
A Barely.
Q Did you have an occasion to relate the details of this incident when you were awakened to either of those people?
A I don't recall.
Q Did you ever tell Captain and Mrs. Chester, or anyone else, that you were awakened that night and looked out and saw a young woman getting into an automobile?
A No, sir.
Q Did you ever tell that to anyone?
A No, sir.
Q As I understand your testimony, you say you have no memory of hearing voices or people running. Is that correct?
A I don't recall.
Q You have no memory of it?
A No, sir.
Q As I understand it, now, you say you saw a car's taillights, you think when you did look out?
A Yes, sir.
Q Can you identify the make of the car?
A No, sir.
Q Do you remember what this noise that awakened you was? Whether it was a car or -- what it was?
A No, sir. I cannot really say.
Q Let me draw your attention to a matter on a different day. If that's permissible with the investigating officer, I wish now to direct her attention to the 21st.

COL ROCK: Yes, go ahead.

Q I draw your attention to the 21st of February, which would have been Saturday. Do you remember an incident which occurred on that day involving your calling the attention of Captain Chester to a specific incident?
A My calling him?
Q By any means. For instance, did you bang on the wall and ask for Captain Chester's help on that day?
A No, absolutely not.
Q Did you on that day, or any other day, have occasion to see an automobile outside your building in which you observed a weapon of some sort?
A Yes, sir.
Q When was that?
A I think perhaps it was not a Saturday, but on a Sunday morning. We were having a late breakfast and I was just sitting there and I could see through the window and I saw a car and I thought it was or I thought I saw a gun, with two young boys in the car. I walked over to the window and looked and I turned to say to Ken, "Please come look," you know --
Q Who is Ken?
A Kenneth is my husband. And right away, I said well, I think we better call the military police or someone.
Q What did you do?
A I did. I called and just in a matter of seconds, the military police were searching around and they did come straight to the house, very fast.
Q What kind of a car was this?
A It was a small Buick convertible with a light -- with a light car -- I don't exactly remember, but I think the top was also light; it was white or a very light blue.
Q Did you have occasion to see that car before or after?
A Yes, I did. I did see the car.
Q Where?
A Outside. The same place.
Q Had it ever been in that area before?
A Yes. As matter of fact, I saw the car parked on the street, sometimes as I was driving through, perhaps going to the commissary or something.
Q You think it belongs in that area?
A Yes, because there was sticker on the car.
Q Can you relate the Sunday, in time, to the 16th and 17th of February when the incident at Captain MacDonald's house happened now?
A No.
Q When you called the military police, did you call them because you were afraid for your life?
A No.
Q Then for what reason?
A I was concerned why two kids were sitting out in front of that house, just playing around.
Q In other words, you made that call as a law-abiding citizen?
A Yes, I did.

MR. SEGAL: That's objected to. That's characterizing what she did, not a question.

CPT BEALE: Counselor, you know how to phrase these questions.

CPT SOMERS: I'm cross-examining.

MR. SEGAL: That's characterizing. It's not a question, sir.

COL ROCK: You're cross-examining, but you're introducing original testimony here, so be careful.

CPT SOMERS: I have no further questions.

COL ROCK: Counsel for the accused?

Questions by MR. SEGAL:
Q Is your first name Jan? Or Janice?
A Yes, Janet.
Q Janet?
A Yes, sir.
Q And Snyder is your married name?
A Yes, sir.
Q And what is your maiden name?
A Locklear.
Q Locklear? Would you spell it for us, please?
A L-o-c-k-l-e-a-r.
Q When you say your residence is Fairmont, North Carolina, could you be for us a little more specific as to where you live in Fairmont?
A A rural area.
Q I know, but what I'm asking you for is a house number or street name, or an RD box number.
A Route 3, Fairmont.
Q Route 3, Fairmont?
A Yes, sir.
Q At whose house do you reside?
A My parent's.
Q And what is the name of your parents?
A Lucius Locklear and Lizzie Locklear.
Q Who were your neighbors in the particular block of dwelling that you lived in on Castle Drive back in February 1970?
A The Chesters and Judy and John, next door --
Q What was their last names? Is that the McGowans?
A Yes.
Q And who else lived in that particular block of houses, besides the Chesters?
A I have no idea.
Q Were you friendly with anyone else on that block besides just the family?
A Just ordinarily -- I mean, "Hello, how are you," and just talk.
Q Do you know the names of people in that block?
A No. I don't recall.
Q What was the nature of your relationship with Captain and Mrs. McGowan? Were you friendly with them?
A Just when I saw them or a brief conversation.
Q Did you know Mrs. McGowan better than you did Captain McGowan?
A I don't recall. I mean -- no.
Q I'm not sure I understand your answer. Do you know what your relationship with Captain and Mrs. McGowan was?
A Do I know what my relationship was? Just ordinarily -- just ordinary, hello and just discussing anything that might be there to talk about.
Q Were you friendlier with Mrs. McGowan that you were with Captain McGowan?
A I never thought about it.
Q How about Captain and Mrs. Chester? What was your relationship with them?
A Nice people.
Q Would you say that you were friendly with them or just strangers to her or them?
A Just friendly, just say hello.
Q Weren't you on a first name basis with Mrs. Chester?
A Yes.
Q What was her first name?
A Sue.
Q Did you have occasion to go over to their house sometimes?
A Yes. My little girl was very interested in her birds and we would take her over.
Q And would you go over to the Chester's house with her?
A Not frequently. A couple of times.
Q A couple of times the entire period that you lived there, a couple of times a week, or a couple times a month?
A Probably just a couple of times that we lived there, which was very short.
Q Did you consider Mrs. Chester to be a friend of yours?
A She was friendly.
Q To your knowledge, did either Captain or Mrs. McGowan have anything against you in the nature of some grudge or some dislike that you were aware of?
A None whatsoever.
Q To your knowledge, did either Captain or Mrs. Chester have any grudge or dislike of you that you were aware of?
A No.
Q Would there be any reason for either the McGowans or the Chesters to say something unfriendly or unpleasant about you that you are aware of?
A No.
Q Are you telling us that this was or was not an unusual incident that caused you to be awakened on the morning of the 17th?
A Please repeat that.
Q Was it an unusual incident that caused you to be awakened on the 17th?
A Unusual. As I said, I was awakened by the loudness of what happened, the car or something, and I was concerned.
Q What were you concerned about?
A The noise.
Q And was that noise something that was out of the ordinary, as far as that time of night, that place?
A I really can't answer that. It's out of the ordinary --
Q Well, let me ask you this. Had it ever happened before or after while you lived on Castle Drive?
A Well, I don't recall.
Q Did you have occasion to talk with me and Mr. Eisman a few moments ago in the room adjoining this courtroom?
A Yes, I did.
Q Did either one of us ask you that question a few moments ago as to whether or not this had ever happened before?
A Yes.
Q Do you recall the answer that you gave us a few minutes ago?
A It was unusual enough that I did get up and look out the window.
Q Do you recall saying that it had never happened before or afterward, while you lived on Castle Drive?
A No.
Q You don't recall that?
A No. Not exactly that way, no.
Q Isn't it a matter of fact that you had never before been awakened out of your sleep by some episode involving the starting or moving of automobiles during the period of time you lived on Castle Drive?

CPT SOMERS: I object. She's answered that.

MR. SEGAL: She's not answered it to the extent that she will confirm or deny that she's indicated it never happened before.

CPT SOMERS: She did answer it. She said she didn't recall.

MR. SEGAL: I suggest to the witness, sir, that she may have said differently a short while ago and she's allowed to reflect upon that and to be followed up again by the request to answer that question. This is cross-examination. I think we are entitled the same latitude.

CPT SOMERS: Reasonably. Not to prolong it unnecessarily.

CPT BEALE: Your objection is overruled, Captain Somers. Answer the question if you can, Mrs. Snyder.

MR. SEGAL: To your recollection, had it ever happened before while you were at Castle Drive?
A I do not remember.
Q You do not remember whether it had ever happened or not?
A Definitely not.
Q Did you not tell Mr. Eisman and myself, less than five minutes ago, Mrs. Snyder, that in fact it had never happened before and that's why it was such an unusual episode for you?

CPT SOMERS: Object. She has definitely answered that question.

CPT BEALE: Sustained.

Q Now, Mrs. Snyder, had you ever had occasion to get out of bed in the middle of the night because of some sound or noise emanating from the outside of your house while you lived on Castle Drive, up until that time?
A I really don't remember.
Q How about after that time?
A Yes, I'm sure after that time.
Q What happened after that time that caused you to be awakened out of your sleep?
A I have children. I'm sure I've gotten out at times to see about them.
Q Now you understood me, did you not?
A Yes, I did.
Q You understood me to ask you whether you were awakened by noises coming from the outside. I did not suggest the children.
A I do not recall.
Q What did you see about the rear of the car as it was going away?
A As it was pulling away, the car was going down the road when I glanced at the back of the tail lights and they were -- well, like round Ford lights, because I distinctly remember that they were large,
Q And they were round?
A Yes, they were.
Q In which direction were they going when the car pulled away?
A Down -- they were coming down Castle, down from my home.
Q Would it be going toward the lower numbers on Castle Drive or toward the higher numbers on Castle Drive?
A I guess the lower.
Q And what else did you observe about the car? Other than the size and shape of the tail lights?
A I could not see the car, only just the lights. I just glanced at the lights.
Q What was the sound that you heard? Was it tires squealing, roar of the engine?
A (To Colonel Rock) Sir, I cannot answer directly whether it was the roar of the engine or tires or what. It was just a noise.
Q You got up and went to the window?
A Yes.
Q And when you looked out, how far was the car from your house?
A I don't know -- just in sight enough for me to see the tail lights, to glance at them.
Q Are you such a light sleeper that normally the sound of a car in the street would awaken you from your sleep?
A No, I don't think so. Just not a car passing by.
Q Would you say that normally you are a light sleeper?
A Normally am I a light sleeper? No.
Q Did you ever have occasion to tell any person who was identified to you as an investigator about what you heard or saw in the early morning hours of February 17th?
A The next morning, an investigator did come by and he questioned me and talked to me.
Q Let me ask you -- you say the next morning. The morning of February 17th, after the night was finished?
A Yes.
Q Can you indicate to the best of your knowledge about what time you were interviewed by an investigator?
A I think perhaps around 10:30 or 11.
Q AM?
A Yes.
Q And how did you know he was an investigator? Did he show you some identification?
A Yes, he did.
Q What did his credentials indicate to you that he was connected with?
A Well, perhaps at the time -- I don't know. I really don't know. He just told me his name and he said he would like to talk to me.
Q Did he say he was an investigator from the Criminal Investigation Division?
A I don't remember.
Q Was he in plain uniform or plainclothes?
A He was dressed in a suit.
Q What race was he?
A He was colored.
Q And how old a man was he?
A I would say perhaps in his early twenties.
Q Did you tell him what you had observed on that night, about the car causing you to be awakened? And you observed the lights as it went down the street.
A Yes.
Q Did you tell him anything else, other than that, about what happened that morning?
A I don't recall.
Q Is it possible that you told him anything else beyond that?
A I would think not.
Q Did he have occasion to write down what you were saying as you were talking to him?
A He did, yes, sir.
Q Did he indicate to you that he might have occasion to talk to you again thereafter?
A I'm sure he did.
Q Did he tell you what it was about at that time?
A No, sir.
Q That caused him to ask these questions.
A When he came in and asked me -- he stated that he wanted to talk to me and then he proceeded to ask me if there was any unusual sound or did I hear people or anything during the night. He did not relate what had happened.
Q Did you know that there had been a killing at the MacDonald house at that time?
A No, I did not.
Q When did you learn about that?
A Later, around lunchtime.
Q Now the investigator in no way indicated to you why he wanted to ask you about what had happened in terms of unusual sounds or noises, is that right?
A He did not relate to a murder, no.
Q Did you have any idea?
A I had none.
Q Yet even though you didn't know he was coming to talk to you about a triple murder, you still thought the noise you had heard that night was important enough to relate them, didn't you?
A It was the next morning after I had heard the noise that night. Yes, I related it to him about the noises, yes.
Q Did you ever have occasion to tell anyone else about it besides that one investigator, about what you saw and heard that night?
A I'm sure I probably talked about it.
Q Would you say you talked about it to many people?
A I do not remember.
Q I think you had occasion to talk to Captain and Mrs. McGowan about it?
A I don't remember.
Q Do you know whether you might have talked to them about it?
A No.
Q Do you know whether you had occasion to talk to Captain and Mrs. Chester about what you saw that morning?
A No.
Q Do you know whether you might have talked to Captain Chester?
A No.
Q Did you talk to anyone else that you can recall, specifically about what you saw that morning?
A No, sir.
Q Did you have occasion to mention it to your husband?
A Yes.
Q When did you mention it to him?
A He came home for lunch.
Q At lunch time?
A Yes, sir.
Q Did you have occasion to be in the Chester's house at lunch time on the 17th?
A No, sir.
Q How did you learn about the MacDonald killing? At lunch time you learned, how did you learn?
A I really don't recall if it was news or from my husband.
Q Did you talk to Captain and Mrs. McGowan at all on that day?
A I don't recall.
Q Did you talk to Captain and Mrs. Chester on that day?
A I really do not recall if it was that day.
Q Did you tell anybody at all about being interviewed by an investigator that morning?
A I don't recall.
Q Did you talk to somebody else a few weeks later about what you saw on that evening?
A I don't recall.
Q Did you talk to anybody ever who identified himself as being a special agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation?
A After the first time, the morning after?
Q That's right. It's your testimony here under oath today that as far as you can recall, you never talked to another person, who was at least -- other than your neighbors -- about what you saw that morning, other than the MP, the investigator that came to your door.

CPT SOMERS: I object. That's clearly not what she said.

MR. SEGAL: I'm asking her whether that's what she said. She can either admit it or deny it.

CPT BEALE: Mr. Segal, why don't you rephrase the question. Make it more clear.

Q Mrs. Snyder, I would like to know and I would like you to tell the investigating officer, whether you ever told any person, as to the morning of February 17th, what you had seen or heard on that morning, other than your neighbors?
A Would you clarify -- what I had seen and heard?
Q Yes.
A I don't recall. I can't definitely say whether I discussed it with anyone or not. I do not recall.
Q Do you ever recall being interviewed after February 17th by a person who identified himself in some way to you as being an investigator with some law enforcement agency?
A I don't recall. I really don't.
Q Is it such a commonplace thing for you that it would not stand out in your mind to be interviewed by an FBI agent or Criminal Investigator?
A I don't ever remember anyone coming over discussing.
Q Aside from that investigator talking to you on the morning 17th, have you ever been interviewed by any kind of law enforcement in connection with the investigation of the crime?
A I honestly don't think so.
Q Now you were asked about an incident that took place on the weekend of the 16th and 17th. Do you recall that?
A I don't recall if it was the weekend after the 17th.
Q Oh, I see. Well, can you indicate how many days it was after that?
A I cannot. I don't remember. It was some during -- after the time of the accident.
Q Now the car that you described, what makes you so sure it was a convertible?
A Because I remember looking at the car.
Q And what did you see about it that made you so certain it was a convertible?
A I don't remember what made me so certain, but I do know that it was a convertible.
Q Might it have been some -- a hard top with some sort of special cloth finish that you saw out there?
A No.
Q Are you sure about that?
A Positive.
Q What about the person who had the gun?
A The guy on the right.
Q Now would that be where the steering was or would that be the passenger seat?
A The passenger seat.
Q Any doubt in your mind about that?
A No, sir.
Q You're positive about that?
A Yes, sir.
Q How long were you looking at the persons sitting in that car?
A First, just for a few minutes, because I did not walk over and look out the window and I wondered in my mind what they were doing there.
Q In what direction was the gun pointed?
A It was -- he was holding it up in front of him. I'm not sure.
Q Could you indicate, if that's your answer, how it was being held?
A In front of his face, looking straight --
Q Did he have the stock of the gun on the right shoulder?
A I have no idea. I could not see them that clearly.
Q Where was his cheek in regard to --
A I do not --
Q Wait a minute. Let me finish the question. Where was his cheek in regard to the weapon he was holding?
A I do not know.
Q Did he seem to be looking down the barrel of his rifle?
A I would say yes.
Q In what direction was he looking?
A He was just holding it up, looking.
Q Was he pointing it up into the sky or pointed in the direction of your building or any other building?
A I don't know if he was pointing it to a building. He was sitting out front and he had a gun up and he was -- just holding it up.
Q Had you ever seen any of these people before?
A Not that I recall.
Q Did you see that car before?
A I seen the car after that.
Q After that?
A Yes, sir.
Q Had you seen it prior to this?
A I don't remember.
Q Did you tell the CID or call the MP's and advise that that you saw the vehicle in which the gun was being -- that you thought was being handled -- mishandled enough to call the police about it?
A Yes.
Q You did call them?
A Yes.
Q When was that?
A As soon as I saw it.
Q Now you mean as soon as you saw the car the second time or as soon as you saw it the first day, that Saturday or Sunday?
A As I say, I saw it that Sunday. I don't know, but I did call.
Q What I am asking, you say you saw the car the second time.
A I saw the car after, or one that resembled it, yes.
Q Oh, then, you are not sure that it's the same car that you saw thereafter?
A (No response.)
Q What is your answer?
A I don't think I can answer that, not --

COL ROCK: Just answer, if you will, Mrs. Snyder, to the best of your ability. We're just trying to determine whether or not you are certain that it was the same car or whether it appeared to be the same.

A It appeared to be the same car, yes.
Q Did you ever report that fact, that you saw what appeared to be the same car to the MP's?
A I don't think so.
Q You mean you are not certain whether you called them again?
A No, sir.
Q Mrs. Snyder, did you ever tell Captain and Mrs. Chester that you saw a young woman and several men running toward and get in the car that was parked across the street from your house on February 17th in the early morning?
A No.
Q You did not?
A Absolutely not.
Q You're positive about that
A I am positive.
Q Did you ever tell Captain and Mrs. Chester that the young woman had long hair?
A No, sir.
Q Did you ever tell anybody that you had seen a young woman getting into that car that you saw across from your house?
A No.
Q Do you know any reason why Captain and Mrs. Chester should lie in regard to what you said to them?
A No, sir.
Q Do you have any bad relationship with either one of them?
A None whatsoever.
Q Mrs. Snyder, did you in fact, go around the neighborhood telling many people that you had seen a girl with long hair get into that car, for the purposes of attracting attention to yourself?
A No, sir.

CPT SOMERS: I object. She's answered that.

Q Mrs. Snyder, didn't you, in fact, see that night --

COL ROCK: Just a minute. We have an objection first.

CPT BEALE: Mr. Segal, if you would, just rephrase your question.

Q Let me put it to you this way. If I were to tell you that Captain and Mrs. Chester have, under oath, stated that you told them you saw a girl with blonde hair get into the car on the, morning of the 17th, would you say they were stating what you told them correctly or incorrectly?
A What I told them about what?
Q All the questions I now put to you, Mrs. Snyder, will relate to what you told other people about what you supposedly saw on the morning of the 17th that awakened you from your sleep. First of all, is that part clear? I am only talking about what you said that got you out of bed on the early morning hours of the 17th, is what I am referring to now?
A Yes.
Q Now are you telling us that if Captain and Mrs. Chester testified here that they heard you say that you saw a girl with long hair, were they lying or were they telling the truth about what you said?
A I would say a lie.
Q That they are both lying?
A Yes, sir.
Q If I were to tell you that Captain and Mrs. Chester say that you told many people about having seen the girl with the long hair get into the car, would you say that they were lying or telling the truth?
A I would know that they are lying.
Q If I was to tell you that Captain Chester testified that you banged on the wall on the weekend after the 16th to call his attention to the people with the gun outside, would you say he was lying or telling the truth?
A I would say he was lying.
Q Could you tell the investigating officer any reason why either Captain or Mrs. Chester would lie about you in that regard?
A Definitely not.
Q You know of no reason?
A Definitely not.
Q You think you have a very very clear memory about all of the episodes on the 17th and the 18th of February 1970?
A Yes.
Q Of what happened early in the morning on February 17th?
A Yes.
Q You are clear about that?
A Yes.
Q Very positive about that?
A I am sure, yes, sir.
Q Mrs. Snyder, are you fearful of your life as a result of this episode with the people with the gun outside you house?
A No, sir.
Q You are not?
A No, sir.
Q Do you know of any reason at all why anyone should suggest that you know more about what happened on that morning than you have told us here?
A No, sir.
Q You do not. Did you ever have occasion to go by the name of Janice Dobbs?
A Sir (to Colonel Rock), do we have to go into my personal life?
Q I asked you a question. Do you go by the name of Janice Dobbs?

CPT SOMERS: I object to this.

COL ROCK: I'd like to -- Captain Thompson, would you escort Mrs. Snyder to my office? We want to discuss some technical details here. If you will please remain, we will go into this a little further later on.

(The witness and Captain Thompson departed the hearing room.)

COL ROCK: What is the rationale behind this?

MR. SEGAL: I think we can show that this young lady has had occasion on a number of occasions to pass herself off as being different people. In other words, that she has misstated as to who she is, because I suggest that in view of the contradictory testimony of Mr. Chester and Mrs. Chester, that either she has lied to us under oath here today or that she lied to the Chesters and other people on February 17th, and that we are entitled to confront her with other independent lies as to how she has held herself out. I don't intend to pursue this any great length, sir, but I think that that question and a couple of questions about her present marital relationship will conclude my examination of her.

CPT SOMERS: I think if there is something which relates to her credibility with respect to this specific testimony, then it is relevant. I think the defense is not permitted to apparently impeach a witness by going into her marital life or whether she has used a different name because I fail to see that this has anything to do with her credibility at this point. I think they are trying to go into specific acts of some sort of misconduct or something to impeach her. I don't think they are permitted to do that, and furthermore, I think it's clear that as a witness -- well, let me withdraw that. I think that this is totally improper, impermissible and should not be permitted. I do object. I do not think that this is in any way the proper way to proceed to impeach this witness.

COL ROCK: The hearing is recessed temporarily.

(The hearing recessed at 1642 hours, 12 August 1970.)

(The hearing reopened at 1653 hours, 12 August 1970.)

COL ROCK: This hearing will come to order. Let the record reflect that those parties that were present at the beginning of the recess are currently present in the hearing room to include now, again, Mrs. Snyder, the witness. Mrs. Snyder, I advise you again that you are under oath.
Let the record reflect that counsel for the accused was asking certain questions. I requested that both counsel for the government and counsel for the accused submit their questions to me as I felt it was more appropriate, as investigating officer, that I should ask these questions.

Questions by COL ROCK:
Q Mrs. Snyder, because of the fact certain other witnesses, who have appeared as witnesses in this hearing room, have testified to certain information which is at variance with information that you have presented, it is necessary for me to ask certain additional questions in an effort to try to clarify this matter, and I hope you will bear with me in this.
Mrs. Snyder, have you ever divorced Captain Snyder in Reno?

(Witness hesitated.)

Q I beg your pardon?
A Our marriage was never legal.
Q Your marriage was never legal?
A Right.
Q Then are you currently married?
A To Bill -- William Dobbs? No, I am not.
Q Now why is it that you think you were never legally married to Captain Snyder?
A Because, where Ken and I were married -- I am Indian -- and it's really awful to say -- they do not recognize a mixed marriage.
Q I see.
A And they do not tell, they just -- I found out about it -- and it just -- I can't talk about it.
Q Yes, well, I can certainly understand that. Are you currently married to anyone?
A Through the Air Force, yes, I am, because they have said that they would take the case into court and would -- perhaps make it legal, because of the situation where I -- because we are not legally married because of my race.
Q And was the Air Force going to help you in your case with Captain Snyder? Is that it?
A When Bill and I were married, and Ken -- I wrote to Ken and told him -- he --
Q Excuse me. Bill who?
A William S. Dobbs.
Q Dobson?
A Dobbs.
Q D-o-b-b-s?
A Right.
Q Please start over again, because I now know who William Dobbs is, and the other is Ken Snyder?
A Right.
Q I'm sorry, I'm a little bit confused. Start over again please with your explanation.
A When I met Bill, I was going to get a divorce. I have to start from the beginning.
Q Right, surely.
A So I went down to South Carolina to see about the marriage there and we discussed it, the secretary, the judge and I, and she went and when she came back from lunch she said, it was as though the ceremony wasn't performed, because if it was performed it is not legal because this is South Carolina and it doesn't recognize a mixed marriage. Therefore -- and I asked her, "Then I'm not really married?" And she said "No." Then I married Bill.
Q Well, then you did marry Bill Dobbs?
A Yes, I married Bill.
Q And where was that?
A Bill and I were married in Wichita, Kansas on May the 21st.
Q Of this year?
A Yes, sir.
Q And that state legally recognizes the marriage. Is that correct?
A Yes, but the Air Force will not.
Q Because you were still, so far as they were concerned, legally married to William -- to Kenneth Snyder?
A Yes.
Q And could you tell me where William Dobbs is currently? Is he in the states?
A Yes. He's at McConnell Air Force Base.
Q And where is that?
A Wichita, Kansas.
Q Have you had occasion to go to the Pope Air Force Base Officer's Club within the past two weeks?
A I was there -- last night was two weeks ago.
Q Did you tell anyone in confidence at the club that were working on the MacDonald case? Do you remember making that statement?
A No.
Q How did you learn that you were wanted here today to testify?
A On the news today.
Q Over the radio or TV?
A Over the radio.

COL ROCK: Okay, those are the questions that I have in this connection. Does counsel for the accused have further questions at time or other matters?

MR. SEGAL: I have nothing further, thank you, sir.

COL ROCK: Counsel for the government?

CPT SOMERS: Well, I would just like to expand a little bit on one question asked by the investigating officer.

Questions by CPT SOMERS:
Q Did you come here of your own volition, ma'am?
A I heard my name on the -- I guess the 11:45 or 11:55 news, and when I heard that -- I don't know if it was Mr. Eisman or who, had been looking for me over seven states, I was shocked, and I sat down. I thought, gee, what should I do. Contact the lawyers or what? So then I just sat down and I thought the best thing for me to do is to go over to Fort Bragg and go from there and that's exactly what I did. I did that within thirty-five or forty-five minutes after I heard it.

COL ROCK: So you came here of your own free will?

WITNESS: Yes, I did, I came straight on my own.

COL ROCK: Does counsel have any further questions?

CPT SOMERS: No, sir.

COL ROCK: You are requested, please, not to discuss your testimony with any other person, other than counsel for the government, counsel for the accused, or myself. Do you understand that?

WITNESS: Yes, sir.

COL ROCK: Thank you very much. You are excused.

(Witness departed the hearing room.)

COL ROCK: I believe counsel for the accused has a statement at this time.

MR. SEGAL: Yes, sir, at this time I would request that counsel for the accused be provided with a copy of the statement the government has indicated exists which represents an interview with the witness that was just excused, Mrs. Snyder.

CPT SOMERS: I've already said I would provide that and I will as soon as I can.

MR. SEGAL: Very good, sir.

COL ROCK: This hearing is recessed until 0830 in the morning.

(The hearing recessed at 1703 hours, 12 August 1970.)

 

 

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