Woody's father was a hit man, convicted of killing Texas Judge John H. Wood back in 1979. The elder Harrleson committed this crime, it is said, at the behest of a man named Jimmy Chagra, an accused drug smuggler from a well-known family in El Paso.
The obits don't tell you that Charles Harrelson admitted, in the stand-off before his arrest, that he had been involved in the murder of John F. Kennedy.
Later, in prison, Harrelson retracted that statement. However:
At Harrelson's trial, Joe Chagra, the brother of the man who was believed to have hired Harrelson, testified that Harrelson was given the contract to kill Judge Wood after he claimed to have participated in the JFK assassination. Indicted along with Harrelson in the plot to kill Judge Wood was the brother of New Orleans crime boss Carlos Marcello, who was one of the Mafia figures identified by the Select Committee as possibly having been involved in the assassination of President Kennedy.At the time of arrest, Harrelson had in possession the business card of a R.D. Matthews, mobster who was a known Jack Ruby associate. Matthews later worked for casino operator Benny Binion, who may have been the "go between" who introduced Harrelson to Jimmy Chagra.
This page presents some fascinating original research into the Harrelson affair:
A reporter for the Dallas morning news by the name of Chuck Cook interviewed Harrelson on the judge Wood case and subsequently asked him about his claims of murdering the President, Cook said that Harrelson ‘got this sly little grin on his face, Harrelson is very intelligent and has a way of not answering when it suits him’(6). At a later interview Cook brought the subject up again and at that point Harrelson became very serious, Cook quoted Harrelson as saying "Listen, if and when I get out of here (prison) and feel free to talk, I will have something that will be the biggest story you ever had" and added "November 22, 1963. You remember that!".Moreover,
There is evidence that Harrelson was identified in 1982 by Florida Law enforcement officials as being a member of a group of hired gunmen known as ‘The Company’(36), which takes its name from the CIA. It is claimed that ‘The Company’ owned million in assets including planes ships and real estate. Florida officials claim that ‘The Company’ imported drugs from South America and also were involved in gunrunning and mercenary operations.The "Company" has been linked, by some researchers, with both the Kentucky drug ring outlined in the book The Blue Grass Conspiracy and with another ring run out of the China Lake Naval Research Facility.
Quite a few researchers noted a similarity between 1963 arrest photos of Harrelson and the "tall tramp" arrested on the day of the 1963 assassination, one of three tramps hauled in that day and not identified. Both heads have similar cowlicks, and in both cases, the mouth does not parallel the eyeline.
The identities of the tramps were one of the great mysteries of the JFK assassiination for three decades. In the mid-1990s, researchers discovered that the Dallas police records contained the names of three homeless individuals arrested in a boxcar that day; the tramp thought to be Charles Harrelson was in fact a man named John Gedney. However, arresting officer David V. Harkness has said that more than three transients were pulled out of the boxcar on that day.
Woody Harrelson believes that his father was innocent of the murder of Judge Wood. I do not know the younger Harrelson's response to the claimed connection to the JFK assassination.