A deep dive into James Earl Ray’s role in the national tragedy: “Superb . . . a model of investigation . . . as gripping as a first-class detective story” (The New York Times).
On April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. was killed in Memphis, Tennessee, by a single assassin’s bullet. A career criminal named James Earl Ray was seen fleeing from a rooming house that overlooked the hotel balcony from where King was cut down. An international manhunt ended two months later with Ray’s capture. Though Ray initially pled guilty, he quickly recanted and for the rest of his life insisted he was an unwitting pawn in a grand conspiracy. In Killing the Dream, expert investigative reporter Gerald Posner reexamines Ray and the evidence, even tracking down the mystery man Ray claimed was the conspiracy’s mastermind. Beginning with an authoritative biography of Ray’s life, and continuing with a gripping account of the assassination and its aftermath, Posner cuts through phony witnesses, false claims, and a web of misinformation surrounding that tragic spring day in 1968. He puts Ray’s conspiracy theory to rest and ultimately manages to disclose what really happened the day King was murdered.
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Another Case Closed
This is another classic Posner explaining the sordid tale of Ray assassinating King. Why we would bother to listen to an alcoholic escaped con about a conspiracy, I'll never understand. If you don't want the whole Jerry Springer story of Ray, just the facts of what happened, you can stop after chapter 3 or so. The main point Posner explains is how prison experience and a drivers license allowed Ray to get farther away before being caught than Oswald. Otherwise, if you are curious about the alleged Raoul, Posner includes an interview with him explaining how Ray was full of it. The only conspiracy here is likely the Ray brothers encouragement of James and some help after the fact.