During a violent shoot-out, I looked over, drawn to the sudden mayhem, and was puzzled to see beer cans slowly floating through the air past my face. What was even more puzzling was that they had the word Federal printed on the bottom. They turned out to be the shell casings ejected by the officer who was firing next to me.
That statement, given by an officer involved in a shooting is included in an article by Alexis A. Artwohl titled Perceptual and Memory Distortion During Officer-Involved Shootings. Artwohl is an internationally recognized behavioral science consultant to law enforcement, a researcher, and an author. Artwohl’s research indicates trauma and other highly emotional experiences can radically affect an individual’s perception and memory. In a study of officer related shootings, , Sixty-three percent of the officers reported events seemed to be taking place in slow motion and seemed to take longer to happen than they actually did.
So what does that have to do with the Kennedy assassination? Everything.
The assassination witnesses watched helplessly as the brutal of murder of our nation’s President unfolded. They heard the shots ring out, and saw the fatally wounded President fall toward his horrified wife. They witnessed the police and a crowd of bystanders rush up the Grassy Knoll in search of the killer. Like the police officer, Dealey Plaza witnesses may have experienced the extraordinary perception of slowed time; as a result, for those few witnesses during the extraordinary moments of the assassination of President Kennedy, time may have stood still.