Poll

Do you believe Cooper lived or died. the option are below to cast a vote...

0% Cooper lived
6 (10.3%)
25% Cooper lived
4 (6.9%)
35% Cooper lived.
2 (3.4%)
50% Cooper lived
12 (20.7%)
75% Cooper lived
12 (20.7%)
100 Cooper lived
22 (37.9%)

Total Members Voted: 53

Author Topic: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case  (Read 723890 times)

Offline Robert99

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7575 on: November 16, 2021, 10:00:44 AM »
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Aren’t the fully automatic deployment USAF rigs (ie no ripcord) used exclusively in ejection seats? In 1971 my recollection is that ripcord activated bailout rigs were used in aircraft that didn’t have ejection seats such as transports. I’ll bet that the C 130 that actually caught up with 305 had ripcord activated bailout rigs.

377

I am personally not aware of any military emergency parachute from the 1970s era that did not have a ripcord option.
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7576 on: November 16, 2021, 11:14:39 AM »
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Aren’t the fully automatic deployment USAF rigs (ie no ripcord) used exclusively in ejection seats? In 1971 my recollection is that ripcord activated bailout rigs were used in aircraft that didn’t have ejection seats such as transports. I’ll bet that the C 130 that actually caught up with 305 had ripcord activated bailout rigs.

377

I am personally not aware of any military emergency parachute from the 1970s era that did not have a ripcord option.
The BA-18/22 used what was called an "arming cable knob" to activate an automatic timed deployment. That auto-deployment could be overridden by another T-shaped ripcord mechanism. This chute series was used by jumpmasters and crew of the F-100 and 105 fighter jets. They were complicated to use and frequently malfunctioned.
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7577 on: November 16, 2021, 12:16:46 PM »
In speaking with someone more knowledgeable than I, it would seem that the most likely scenario is that upon landing, the pilots were mistakenly informed that the parachutes were being procured from McChord AFB. That information was passed on to Tina Mucklow. When DBC asked Tina what was taking so long, Tina relayed that they were getting the parachutes from McChord. DBC’s reacted with impatience and complained that “Sea-Tac is only 20 minutes from McChord.” At no time did Cooper react negatively to the parachutes being supplied by McChord. He was only upset at how long it was taking. From that point forward, he assumed (incorrectly) that the four chutes he requested were going to be supplied by the United States Air Force at McChord. The idea that he rejected chutes from McChord is nowhere in the FBI files and were only found in media reports later on. Safe to say, the long-held belief that DBC rejected military chutes from McChord is debunked.

When the actual chutes arrived (two backs from Hayden, two fronts pulled by Emerick), Cooper did not react in any way to the fact that they were NOT USAF chutes. He did not complain to Tina, nor did he seem confused or annoyed that they were not what he was anticipating. I believe this is because he didn’t know the difference. He couldn’t tell the difference between a USAF BA-18, a Navy NB-6, or a sport chute. To me, this is a clear indication that he was NOT at all knowledgeable about parachutes. They were all the same to him.

Moreover, his request of front chutes and his assumption that the USAF was supplying them underscores his lack of understanding about parachutes. The USAF only used front reserve parachutes for static line jumps. They would not have been used in conjunction with nor compatible with a back bailout rig. He apparently didn’t know this and didn’t think twice about it. This is because he did not know any of this. The chutes were a means to an end, and it’s possible he concluded that they were all the same.

The only conclusion I can reach is that Cooper’s vague demand of “two fronts and two backs” is telling. They were the linchpin in his heist. Why would he not be more specific in exactly what he wanted? This nonchalance about what rigs he would be given and who would be supplying them further underscores this dearth of knowledge. Not only did he not care where the chutes came from, he couldn’t even tell that they were not the ones he was told were coming. Could it be that the most important part of his plan was the part that he was the least knowledgeable about?
 

Offline Bruce A. Smith

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7578 on: November 16, 2021, 12:35:06 PM »
So why didn't McChord supply the chutes?
 

Offline haggarknew

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7579 on: November 16, 2021, 03:07:07 PM »
If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?
 

Offline georger

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7580 on: November 16, 2021, 04:09:58 PM »
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If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?

What evidence suggests he couldn't tell the difference between different chutes? What he said was: he didnt need instructions on using the chutes. And he tossed those aside.

Maybe Coop only knew about left hand hammers, but not right hand hammers? And the same with pencils and cups and car doors ... ?

Pounding out EVIDENCE has reached the pinpoint of useless absurdity ? 
« Last Edit: November 16, 2021, 04:14:21 PM by georger »
 

Offline Robert99

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7581 on: November 16, 2021, 04:14:34 PM »
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If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?

Chaucer, front or chest pack parachute were in common use during the WW2 era and for some time after that in both the USAF and Navy.  These were not reserve chutes but emergency chutes that were normally assigned to crew members on large aircraft whose jobs or job areas on the aircraft were such that the pack itself would interfere with their activities.  Such as the waist, tail, and top and bottom gunners on the B-17.  They would wear the harness but have to grab the pack and fasten it to the harness by a couple of snaps before jumping.  Same thing with some Navy aircraft such as the PBY.
 

Offline georger

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7582 on: November 16, 2021, 04:16:59 PM »
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If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?

Chaucer, front or chest pack parachute were in common use during the WW2 era and for some time after that in both the USAF and Navy.  These were not reserve chutes but emergency chutes that were normally assigned to crew members on large aircraft whose jobs or job areas on the aircraft were such that the pack itself would interfere with their activities.  Such as the waist, tail, and top and bottom gunners on the B-17.  They would wear the harness but have to grab the pack and fasten it to the harness by a couple of snaps before jumping.  Same thing with some Navy aircraft such as the PBY.

. . . same thing for camels and motors boats of that era ?
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7583 on: November 16, 2021, 05:19:57 PM »
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If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?

Chaucer, front or chest pack parachute were in common use during the WW2 era and for some time after that in both the USAF and Navy.  These were not reserve chutes but emergency chutes that were normally assigned to crew members on large aircraft whose jobs or job areas on the aircraft were such that the pack itself would interfere with their activities.  Such as the waist, tail, and top and bottom gunners on the B-17.  They would wear the harness but have to grab the pack and fasten it to the harness by a couple of snaps before jumping.  Same thing with some Navy aircraft such as the PBY.
The USAF back bailout rigs did not use a reserve or emergency chute. Any "front chute" supplied by the USAF would have been extraneous.
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7584 on: November 16, 2021, 05:20:51 PM »
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What evidence suggests he couldn't tell the difference between different chutes?
I've outlined that in my posts above.
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7585 on: November 16, 2021, 05:22:04 PM »
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If he can't tell the difference between different chutes why would he bother to pull the packing card in the first place?
How would the packing cards be indicative of what type of chute it was? Do they say the type of chute on the packing card?
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7586 on: November 16, 2021, 05:23:07 PM »
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So why didn't McChord supply the chutes?
I don't know.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2021, 05:25:54 PM by Chaucer »
 

Offline dudeman17

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7587 on: November 16, 2021, 07:14:51 PM »
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My opinion is that Cooper assumed that the FBI/NWO would supply the chutes from the local air base. Tina probably assumed the same. Cooper likely never knew that the rigs he actually did receive were not from the Air Force. This would suggest that he didn’t know the different between a USAF BA-18/22 and a Navy NB-6/8. The question is:  what does this confusion on Cooper’s part indicate about his overall knowledge of parachutes?

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Any insight into the McChord question? If Cooper expected USAF equipment but was given Navy equipment and supposedly had no problem putting it on, does that mean he was experienced in USAF rigs AND USN rigs? Or that he didn’t know the difference and didn’t care?

That really doesn't indicate much about his knowledge. Most harness/containers of this type are fairly similar. To the end user, the differences wouldn't be that much to create confusion.


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When the actual chutes arrived (two backs from Hayden, two fronts pulled by Emerick), Cooper did not react in any way to the fact that they were NOT USAF chutes. He did not complain to Tina, nor did he seem confused or annoyed that they were not what he was anticipating. I believe this is because he didn’t know the difference. He couldn’t tell the difference between a USAF BA-18, a Navy NB-6, or a sport chute. To me, this is a clear indication that he was NOT at all knowledgeable about parachutes. They were all the same to him.

Moreover, his request of front chutes and his assumption that the USAF was supplying them underscores his lack of understanding about parachutes. The USAF only used front reserve parachutes for static line jumps. They would not have been used in conjunction with nor compatible with a back bailout rig. He apparently didn’t know this and didn’t think twice about it. This is because he did not know any of this. The chutes were a means to an end, and it’s possible he concluded that they were all the same.

The only conclusion I can reach is that Cooper’s vague demand of “two fronts and two backs” is telling. They were the linchpin in his heist. Why would he not be more specific in exactly what he wanted? This nonchalance about what rigs he would be given and who would be supplying them further underscores this dearth of knowledge. Not only did he not care where the chutes came from, he couldn’t even tell that they were not the ones he was told were coming. Could it be that the most important part of his plan was the part that he was the least knowledgeable about?

Again, I don't think this is necessarily an indication that he doesn't know anything about them. That he asked for 'two backs and two fronts' would seem to indicate that he was looking for two complete freefall rigs, mains and reserves. When he gets the bailout rigs (which don't use reserves because they ARE reserves)...  He had already indicated impatience, so maybe he just figures that those will do and let's get on with it.  However...

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...front or chest pack parachute were in common use during the WW2 era and for some time after that in both the USAF and Navy.  These were not reserve chutes but emergency chutes that were normally assigned to crew members on large aircraft whose jobs or job areas on the aircraft were such that the pack itself would interfere with their activities.  Such as the waist, tail, and top and bottom gunners on the B-17.  They would wear the harness but have to grab the pack and fasten it to the harness by a couple of snaps before jumping.  Same thing with some Navy aircraft such as the PBY.

Now that's an interesting thought... He had asked for a backpack for the money, maybe he wanted a chest-mount bailout rig to compare whether that might be more compatible.


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Aren’t the fully automatic deployment USAF rigs (ie no ripcord) used exclusively in ejection seats? In 1971 my recollection is that ripcord activated bailout rigs were used in aircraft that didn’t have ejection seats such as transports. I’ll bet that the C 130 that actually caught up with 305 had ripcord activated bailout rigs.

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I am personally not aware of any military emergency parachute from the 1970s era that did not have a ripcord option.

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The BA-18/22 used what was called an "arming cable knob" to activate an automatic timed deployment. That auto-deployment could be overridden by another T-shaped ripcord mechanism.

I once encountered a military bailout rig that had all three. (Not sure when it was made, my encounter with it was in the late 80's.) It had a ripcord, it had an automatic opener (set for 10k) and it had a knob that when pulled, set off a ten-second timer for the automatic opener. I'm guessing that knob attached to something on an early ejection seat, so that it would be pulled upon separation from the seat? Versatility, I guess...


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... (a) T-shaped ripcord mechanism... They were complicated to use and frequently malfunctioned.

I'm curious if that was the hard pull issue I noted earlier with (T-shaped) blast handles.


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How would the packing cards be indicative of what type of chute it was? Do they say the type of chute on the packing card?

Yes they do. It's one of the main purposes of it. What it is, and when it was last packed.
 

Offline Chaucer

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7588 on: November 16, 2021, 08:14:15 PM »
Thanks, dudeman17. I really appreciate your knowledge and input.

I can't speak to the harnesses of the USAF and USN chutes, I can say that the deployment mechanisms were quite different. It would be interesting to see what would happen if you gave an airman a Navy bailout rig and then gave a naval aviator a USAF bailout rig - if they would be able to put one on and then deploy successfully in a live jump without directions. My guess is no, but admittedly that's all it is: a guess.

Again, I'll circle back to my original premise. The chutes were his getaway car. Why was he so unconcerned about the style and type of parachute he was going to use to bail out at 10 grand? Are we to assume that he was not only an expert skydiver but actually an expert in all parachutes? That he was familiar with every military and civilian chute they could have offered him? I suppose that is possible but seems....unlikely?

I guess it comes down to whether you think Cooper had total calmness and confidence because he was extremely experienced? Or was his extreme inexperience belied by foolish bravado?

Either way, I think it's a valuable conversation, and I do appreciate your expertise.
 

Offline dudeman17

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Re: Clues, Documents And Evidence About The Case
« Reply #7589 on: November 16, 2021, 09:42:53 PM »
I think you're over-thinking it. As far as mechanical devices go, these types of parachutes are exceedingly simple. As far as the user is concerned, the differences in these kinds of rigs is irrelevant. A navy guy and an army guy swapping rigs, absolutely they would be able to use them. The human body is what it is, and the harnesses really don't vary that much. You put your arms through the shoulder straps, put your legs in the leg straps, and attach the chest strap and possibly a belly band. The container is simple, the variances in design don't affect how you use them. The ripcord opens it. How the cable routes and exactly where the handle is mounted, it's all pretty apparent. (The different lanyards and what-not of the 'automatic' methods of opening them are more a difference of the aircraft and how you get out of or eject from them.) That Cooper dismissed the directions and seemed familiar with putting it on would seem to show that he has at least a basic knowledge of them. What you're describing is like if you put someone in a random, different kind of car, would they be able to drive it. If you're at all even remotely familiar with how to drive, where the steering wheel, gas and brake pedals are will be readily apparent.
 
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