Newcomers to this blog are advised to begin with the first two posts, Just the Facts, Ma'am and Case Solved, which explain in very general terms why I believe I've solved this case. Some important questions are answered in the following post, Misunderstandings, Misconceptions, Misdirections. After that feel free to browse whatever topics might interest you (see blog archive).

NB: If anyone has trouble posting a comment, email it to doktorgosh (at), and I'll post it for you.

Notice to readers of my Kindle book: I recently noticed that, on certain devices (though not all), the Table of Contents begins with Chapter One and omits the Introduction and Preface. Since the Introduction is especially important, I urge everyone to make sure to begin reading at the very beginning of the book, not the first chapter in the Table of Contents. Thank you.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Big Bad Wolf -- OR -- The Dangers of Cherry Picking

At one point, the Ramsey defense team focused its attention on a Boulder reporter named Chris Wolf, based on a report from his girl friend of suspicious behavior on the morning after JonBenet's murder. Wolf subsequently sued the Ramseys for defamation, in a trial that gave "New York Lawyer" Darnay Hoffman an opportunity to present his case against Patsy (see previous posts). As a result of his girl friend's accusations, Wolf was investigated -- and considerable attention was paid to his handwriting. I recently discovered the following youtube video, which purports to demonstrate how close his writing is to that of the note:

RAW VIDEO: Handwriting analysis of Chris Wolf's... by LocalNews-GrabNetworks

If you watch carefully, you'll see that many of the overlays look extremely convincing, with word matches much closer than anything Cina Wong came up with for Patsy. One would think that, on this basis, Wolf would have been suspect number one for sure.

Though Hoffman lost his case against Patsy, based on the judge's ruling that an intruder was far more likely to have committed this crime, no case against Wolf was ever pursued. According to investigative reporter Jeff Shapiro, "Handwriting experts in New York said he was not the author of the ransom note." If you're patient enough to watch till nearly the end, you'll see why -- because when we finally get a chance to see Wolf's writing style as a whole, rather than the carefully chosen snippets overlaid with words from the note, we see how totally different it is from the style of the note.

What this video represents is not evidence that Chris Wolf wrote the note. No evidence of any intruder exists, and certainly there is no evidence linking Wolf to the crime. What it demonstrates is how easy it is to be convinced by isolated "matches" taken out of context, deliberately cherry picked in such a way as to emphasize fortuitous similarities and hide significant differences.

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