THE KING ASSASSINATION

SMOKING GUN, BUT WHO'S THE CULPRIT?

It's another mystery. Why has JAMES EARL RAY's defense team petitioned the court for a second rifle test? The request, in an affidavit filed this month in Memphis, Tenn., pleads that the defense was not allowed to properly clean the rifle before the first tests in Rhode Island last month. The judge called off last week's scheduled hearing, at which test results were to be revealed. The request, coupled with the defense's coyness about the results, suggests to some that the tests were inconclusive, as the Memphis district attorney general's office has always maintained they would be.

--By Jackson Baker

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