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).

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Still More on Burke

Amazingly enough, the JonBenet forums seem as active as ever, even after all these years -- but I've noticed a significant change. Whereas Patsy Ramsey was originally everyone's favorite murder suspect, that "honor" has now fallen to her son, Burke. Not only on the forums, but also in so many comments I'm reading on this blog, people seem unable to let go of the idea that Burke Ramsey could be the one who killed his sister, either on purpose or by accident. And since, as we know, she was sexually assaulted, these same people have no problem tossing that accusation into the bin along with everything else -- including, of course, strangulation with a "garotte."

I've already written at some length about Burke, making it clear, first of all, that, strictly speaking, neither the facts nor the logic of the case absolutely positively rule him out, but at the same time emphasizing the extreme unlikelihood of his involvement. It is, of course, no secret that imo John and only John was responsible for the kidnap staging, including the writing of the "ransom" note and the breakin at the basement window. In this case, as I see it, the facts and the logic all point in the same direction: John and John alone. In all honesty, however, I can't see any facts that tell me with the same degree of confidence that John was also the one who sexually assaulted and killed his daughter. That certainly makes sense in view of everything else we know, but the possibility that John could have been covering for Burke cannot be completely discounted with total certainty. And as we know, this is the theory so strongly hinted at by James Kolar (though he also includes Patsy as a co-conspirator, which I do not), who, as the one-time lead detective on the case, cannot easily be dismissed.

In view of the fact that so many, including Kolar, so strongly suspect Burke, I've decided it's important that I delve more deeply into this issue, to try to understand why so many see him as the most likely suspect and also explain as clearly as I can my conviction that he could not have been involved. This post can be regarded as supplemental to other posts on this blog devoted to the same topic, here and here. And also here. I'll try not to repeat myself more than absolutely necessary.

As I see it, the principal reason why so many suspect Burke was cogently summarized by a Websleuths poster calling himself, "UKGuy": "Well the most consistent theory is BDI. IMO, nothing else explains why the parents would stage together."

A very similar view is expressed on the Topix forum by "Capricorn":
I think the events of that night and my firm belief that Patsy wrote that note, along with the circumstances of the staging, suggest TO ME, imo that Burke would be the only person that both JR and PR would go to those lengths for. I don't think either would have covered to this extreme and for this long for one another.  
Similar reasoning is exhibited in the following anonymous comment on this blog:
I think Burke was guilty of the killing; Patsy was guilty of writing the ransom note; and both she and John were guilty of the cover-up. God forgive me for passing judgment when I don't have all the facts, but as a mother this is the only scenario I can devise that would tempt me to be complicit in the cover up of the tragic death of a beloved child. If there was no outsider involved--this has to be what happened.
As more succinctly seconded in the following comment: "I agree. The only way these two would cover this up is to protect their son."

And yes, this view does make some sense, because it's very hard to see why Patsy would want to go along with a coverup knowing that John had killed the apple of her eye, the daughter she'd doted on and fussed over for years. And similarly, it's equally hard to see why John would have been willing to cover for Patsy if, as Steve Thomas has argued, she was the one who killed JonBenet, regardless of whether this was done by accident, as Thomas believes, or deliberately, out of jealousy or rage. In either case, the innocent spouse would certainly have been enraged at what the guilty one had done, and not in any mood to risk a lifetime in prison to assist in staging an intruder breakin plus kidnap attempt on this person's behalf. As I see it, it's also unlikely that the two of them would take such extreme measures to protect a son who had just murdered his sister, but, in the eyes of a great many following the case, loving parents would risk everything to protect a child, regardless of what he'd done.

Of course, it's true that, as Kolar has established, 9 year old boys are in fact capable of murder, and also, in certain rare instances, can be sexually active. And it's also true that, as Kolar has also established, there is reason to believe Burke was a troubled 9 year old, with emotional issues suggested both by his behavior and the overprotectedness of his parents regarding both his contacts with investigators and his medical records, which are apparently sealed to this day.

As far as this case is concerned, however, there is no evidence whatsoever linking Burke to the sexual molestation and/or death of his sister. One can argue as much as one likes that Burke may have had some sort of sexual interest in JonBenet, might have been jealous of her, could have struck the blow that incapacitated her, and even might possibly have been capable of constructing the "garotte" type device, but all this is pure conjecture obviously, as there is not one piece of real evidence to support it. On the other hand, the notion that John and Patsy would have conspired on a coverup only if Burke were the one responsible for JonBenet's death, does have some logic behind it and is in fact worthy of consideration.

Assuming of course that John and Patsy were operating in lock-step tandem from the start, an assumption made by just about everyone following the case. However, as I've demonstrated at several points in this blog, that could not have been the case. Such a theory makes no sense and in fact leads to absurdities. So I see the case very differently from the way most of those posting on the forums see it. From my point of view, those who suspect Burke are looking through the wrong end of the telescope. If we want to argue that the parents would be conspiring only if Burke did it, then we can turn that around to argue that if Burke did not do it, then the parents would not have been conspiring -- which in turn implies that at least one must be innocent. Which is what I've been arguing all along, thank you.

If in fact BDI then as seems obvious, both parents would have known about it, and in order for any sort of coverup to work, both would need to have cooperated in the staging. But if both were in it together, then the 911 call would never have been made while the body was still in the house. And the Ramseys would have had no reason to delay full "cooperation" with the police from day one. As I've argued over and over, John and John alone could have been responsible for the kidnap staging and the note, with Patsy blissfully unaware of any of it. Under such circumstances, there is no longer any need to explain why both Ramsey parents would want to conspire, because clearly they didn't. And all the BDI's  are left with are vague and unsubstantiated suspicions based on the extreme unlikelihood of a nine year old boy having a sexual relationship with his six year old sister.

At heart what we keep coming back to in this case is the fateful decision to rule John out as writer of the note. Once that theory is accepted as fact, then we have no choice but to conclude that Patsy must be the one who wrote the note, which, given John's many lies and obfuscations, implies a conspiracy by both parents. And once that's established, then, admittedly, BDI becomes a real possibility, regardless of how far fetched it might seem from every other point of view. But it is far fetched. And knowing as we now know, that both parents were not conspiring, then there is no longer any reasonable case to be made for BDI.

It's also important to think a bit more critically about the circumstances under which a child might either accidentally or deliberately kill another child. Sure, sibling rivalry could be a motive for murder, and as we know very young children are capable of murder. But we're talking about a lot more than a fight between two children, in which one might take a swing at the other and smash her head in. We're talking about a vicious sexual assault that drew blood. We're talking about evidence consistent with chronic sexual molestation. We're talking about strangulation with a device tied together with some fairly sophisticated knotting. Sure, it's possible that a nine year old boy could have done all this, but realistically, how likely is it? And if in fact all he did was bop his sister over the head, then the most likely response of his parents would have been to call 911 and get an ambulance over there as soon as possible -- NOT stage a violent sexual attack complete with "garotte" strangulation and phoney ransom note. That's not covering for your kid, it's pure insanity.

John Ramsey is someone we don't know very well at all. He spent most of his time away from home, on various "business trips" that have never been very closely examined. So when we attempt to assess how likely it is that he could have been molesting a 6 year old, we have no real basis for coming up with any objective evidence one way or the other. Burke, on the other hand, was a nine year old kid under the almost constant supervision of adults, mostly his mother, but also his grandparents and, of course, his teachers. If he had any of the tendencies so diligently researched by Kolar, including any interest in younger girls, or any girls for that matter, or any violent tendencies or any serious behavior problems at all, it's hard to believe these adults would not have known about it. Yet from everything we've heard, Burke was a quiet, docile child, if anything too withdrawn, but certainly not difficult, demanding or violent. There are no reports of fights or bad blood between him and his sister, other than one incident which was in all likelihood an accident.

There is, by the way, a myth prevailing in certain circles that the authorities always knew JonBenet had been killed by Burke, but were helpless to do anything about it because of his age. Wow, that's awfully difficult to swallow, but for some this has become an article of faith. I recall reading, over the last few months, of two different cases where children under the age of 9 are thought to have killed, probably by accident, but not necessarily. And indeed they were never prosecuted. But both cases made national headlines. There was no attempt to "protect them" by covering up what happened, though their names weren't, to my knowledge, reported. I see no reason why the same sort of thing would not have happened if it were known that Burke had killed his sister. His name might not have been mentioned, but the fact that a nine year old had killed someone would certainly have been reported. And the case would certainly have been closed at that point.

Which reminds me that if Burke had been responsible for his sister's death he could not have been prosecuted either, meaning that there would have been no reason for his parents to cover for him. It's been argued that they might not have been aware of this fact. But certainly this would have been something learned from their lawyers very early on. And under the circumstances it seems reasonable to assume that the lawyers could easily have arranged some sort of plea deal through which they could have apologized for misleading the authorities and gotten off with a suspended sentence, since after all they were "only" protecting their child. It's hard to believe that they'd have persisted with such a dangerous game for so many years just to "protect" a child who never needed their protection in the first place.

It would be naive to assume that any of this will make a difference to hardcore Burke "lovers," but at least I've given it my best shot. Though there is no way to prove absolutely and beyond any question that Burke is innocent, I find it completely unreasonable to insist on his guilt. To me that makes little sense at all.


  1. I don't know whether or not to leave long detailed posts showing why it's not BDI. My inclination at this point is simply to stop conversing with people who are silly enough to fall for BDI.

    I guess I'll respond to one point made in the post -

    "And as we know, this is the theory so strongly hinted at by James Kolar (though he also includes Patsy as a co-conspirator, which I do not), who, as the one-time lead detective on the case, cannot easily be dismissed."

    If we lean towards Kolar's implied theory of the case then we are essentially easily dismissing Det. Arndt's implied theory (JR). We are also easily dismissing ST's theory, which he's brave enough to come right out with, that PR did it. Then of course we're also easily dismissing LS's silly IDI theory. Anyway you look at it, if you pick one theory (supported by a detective) you're dismissing other theories, all of which are developed by real life working detectives who either were present on the scene from day one or had access to the files.

    So, speaking just for myself, I easily dismiss Kolar's implied theory of the case because it's just plain stupid. If we can dismiss one detective's theory we can dismiss all of their theories.


    1. Burke totally did this crime........which is why I search his name to this day and ensure any of my children's friends don't date someone by his name. There is no proof whatsoever that she was sexually invaded, or molested, and facts are facts, Burke was not of legal age to charge, or investigate such a crime, but yet the DNA evidence showed close family DNA, and so the story goes............he's running free, probably not living easily knowing someone out there remember's his name or his (favorited hated) sisters name that peed the bed...............but either way, if you get away with a crime like this once, .............think of the future. TY and rest well everyone.......just do background checks on your daughters boyfriends.

    2. wow...a little paranoid are we?

    3. O and on the autopsy it does indeed have proof she was molested

  2. Another point about BDI theory.

    Covering for BR provides the rationale for JR/PR seemingly working together. However, to see JR/PR working together on a coverup relies on them staging a "kidnapping gone wrong" scenario, as opposed to a "kidnapping gone right" scenario, where the body wouldn't be in the house.

    But why would "The Ramseys" working together decide on a kidnapping gone wrong scenario? Does this actually look like a real kidnapping, by an intruder, that morphed into a sexual assault and ended in murder? No RDI thinks so. To be RDI one has to be able to see through the "kidnapping gone wrong" and see it as a poor attempt to coverup a murder with a faked kidnapping.

    But if it's obvious to us RDIs, then it was equally obvious to the police (as you've pointed out Doc, the original theory of the case was largely the same as the one you've spelled out here on your blog) and it would have been just as obvious to "The Ramseys". (No they did not operate in an alternate reality in which they think others would accept as real that which obviously isn't real).

    So the question at this point is which scenario are "The Ramseys" most likely to stage? A kidnapping gone wrong, or a kidnapping gone right?

    The kidnapping gone wrong looks for all the world like exactly what every RDI thinks it looks like - one or both of the parents killed her, and one or both worked to cover it up with a kidnapping scenario based on an intruder, despite the lack of evidence on an intruder.

    A "kidnapping gone right" otoh, has at least a chance of looking like a real kidnapping. These are wealthy people, so it's plausible that they'd be the target of kidnappers. The body would be gone from the house, so even if the police had suspicions (the police always have suspicions about the parents in kidnapping cases) they'd have to admit is was consistent with a real kidnapping.

    So it comes down to which scenario one thinks is more likely to be "sold" to the police, a kidnapping gone wrong, or a kidnapping gone right. IMO there is no contest, a kidnapping actually completed (gone right) is much more believable than a kidnapping gone wrong.

    The problem of course is that BPD abandoned the original theory of the case (the DocG theory) stumbled, bumbled, failed to follow basic procedure, and were intimidated by the wealth and social standing of "The Ramseys". Additionally BPD had little experience in investigating murder. The end result was that "The Ramseys" got away with murder, which after the fact makes the "kidnapping gone wrong" scenario seem like a good plan.

    This would have played out very differently in Detroit or Philadelphia where, sadly, murder is not at all unusual.


    1. Excellent points, CH, as usual. All I'll add is that once we drop the really absurd notion that "the Ramseys" were conspiring to protect Burke, then all the many excellent reasons for doubting that either would want to take such huge risks to cover for his or her spouse's crime need to be reconsidered in that light. Once Burke is out of the picture, then the whole notion of "the Ramseys" conspiring in a coverup becomes equally absurd. But from the viewpoint of someone absolutely positively convinced that Patsy wrote the note, there seems no other possibility. So round and round we go, endlessly, while a brutal killer walks free.

    2. Who says they did try to stage a Kidnapping gone right scenario? The body was in a place the police didn't even find it. The police seemed to believe that JonBenet had been successfully taken from the house. But they just didn't leave. Jon eventually took the police to the body. By that point it was probably clear they were never going to get the body out of the house undetected if that had been their plan. Sure they could have taken the body out of the house before they called the police, but I think they would be terrified of being seen leaving since anyone noticing them leave in the middle of the night on the same night their daughter disappeared would totally blow the whole deal.

    3. The note gave the killer a perfect alibi for being seen leaving the house. He could have claimed he was delivering the ransom. But NOT on the same night as the murder, no. The following night.

  3. What about burkes knife found in cellar next to body? Also the ripped xmas presents in cellar? Could brother and sister be fighting over presents? alexandra

    1. That knife could have been used by anyone in the house, there's no reason to assume Burke used it that night or even knew where it was. I don't recall any ripped Xmas presents. Ripped packages are what you'd expect to find on the night after Xmas, no?

  4. I think we tend to look for easier reasoning. Yes i believe a 10yr old capable of killing and even trying out sexual curiosities. But in this case it does not add up. However loved a child may be, i do not believe a parent/s would go to such extremities to cover.
    If they did, it still makes no sense. Burke was young, adult prison wasn't going to happen, whereas the parents would have faced prison for covering. If Burke knew a little of something we don't, i can see him hiding it. If Burke was guilty of killing, i think that's another story. He would have to be a very clever 10yr old to hide that.

    1. sorry, should have said 9yrs old, was reading about a case of two 10yr olds just before posting

  5. "Sure, it's possible that a nine year old boy could have done all this, but And if in fact all he did was bop his sister over the head, then the most likely response of his parents would have been to call 911 and get an ambulance over there as soon as possible -- NOT stage a violent sexual attack complete with "garotte" strangulation and phoney ransom note. That's not covering for your kid, it's pure insanity."

    Doc, this statement of yours says it all. Any normal parent would immediately call 9ll, in a desperate attempt to save their child. And Patsy would NEVER have allowed that cord to be tied around her pageant princess's throat, and John, assuming he was innocent too, would never have been able to put that cord around her neck. If you truly love your child, you get them help. You don't stage a violent murder scene --- only to disgrace your daughter more.

    Glad to see your recent blog, Doc.

  6. Another point is worth mentioning here. I think I've made this point elsewhere on the blog, but quite some time ago.

    BDI is a subset of RDI. RDI, by definition, do not believe IDI.

    BDI depends on "The Ramseys" staging a kidnapping gone wrong, and doing so on purpose, believing that the police would find the kidnapping gone wrong scenario plausible. e.g. the police were supposed to believe an intruder did it.

    But if the kidnapping gone wrong scenario was plausible enough that the Rs expected police to go for it, then it must be plausible enough to seriously consider IDI as a valid theory. Yet BDI, as a subset of RDI, must necessarily reject IDI theory.

    Excuse me for belaboring the point, but BDI believers would like to have their cake and eat it too. They'd like to reject IDI theory, as they must in order to be RDI, yet they'd like the kidnapping gone wrong scenario to be considered plausible enough that it's the scene "The Ramseys" decided to stage.

    Yet if the kidnapping gone wrong scenario is plausible, then so is IDI. They can't have it both ways. Either IDI is not very plausible, and it's a case of a family member killing JBR and trying to cover with a fake kidnapping (which is what RDI believe, in one form or anoother) or both the "kidnapping gone wrong" and IDI are both plausible, because they are, at a certain point, sharing common ground.


  7. CH, your analyzation is very complex. It took me a couple reads to understand what you are saying. You make some very interesting points, however I don't think this case is that complicated.

    Sure, if the Ramseys were covering for Burke, they would certainly stage a scene that pointed away from them and their son --- to an intruder. Whether they wanted to stage a "kidnapping gone right" or "kidnapping gone wrong" is beside the point, imo. The bottom line is they would have wanted the police to suspect an outsider and pull any suspicion away from their entire family.

    However, I just don't believe John and Patsy would go to such elaborate lengths to cover for Burke. That scenario sounds like a Lifetime movie script. Rather, if Burke did do it, I think the Ramseys would more likely have said it was an accident. Now, some BDI would then point out the prior sexual molestation and say that the Ramseys could not get away with saying it was an accident because the prior molestation might be discovered and that would then cause police to look twice at the "accident." BUT, how would the Ramseys have known about any prior sexual molestation at that time? If he came to them in the middle of the night and told them he had done something terrible to Jon Benet, I can see him admitting to hitting her, but not molesting her. So, chances are the Ramseys wouldn't have known, and claiming it was an accident would still be their best route to cover for him.

    1. I don't think it's complicated either, and if my analysis seemed complex, then I must have worded it badly.

      BDI and IDI share a common assumption - that the kidnapping gone wrong is a plausible theory of the case. IDI of course believe it's the "real" theory of what happened. BDI believe it's plausible enough that the police should have believed an intruder did it. That's all I'm saying.

      I agree "they" would have wanted to stage an intruder scenario. That's why I think the kidnapping gone wrong vs kidnapping gone right scenarios are at the heart of the matter. If JR and PR worked together to stage a kidnapping, they could have staged either type. Yet it's a fact that the body is in the basement when the 911 call is made. So, "they" either decided to stage a kidnapping gone bad, or there is no "they" and PR called 911 in ignorance of the fact that JBR lay dead in the basement.

      I don't think they'd stage a kidnapping gone wrong. It's not as believable as a kidnapping gone right. It looks just like what every RDI thinks- she was killed by a family member. A kidnapping gone right would at least look like an actual kidnapping.

      Also if "they" were staging a kidnapping gone wrong, they'd have at least finished the window staging before calling the police.

      I agree with you that JR/PR would not go to such lengths to cover for Burke. For me it's this simple - BR was in no legal danger, while JR/PR were quick-marching themselves to life in prison . It's a no brainer. No one is going to risk life in prison (possibly death penalty) when BR can't even be charged with a crime. Going beyond that point is why BDI is such a twisted and tortured exercise - common sense has already been abandoned.

      I agree that if BDI, they'd have tried to pass it off as an accident.


    2. CH, I think the main source of confusion is your implied separation of BDI from RDI. Since this is a BDI thread I can see where you're coming from. Nevertheless, for BOTH RDI and BDI the only explanation is the staging of a kidnapping gone wrong.

      Also, as you say, advocates of both IDI and RDI/BDI are all forced to agree that a kidnapping gone wrong is a plausible explanation for the combination of body in the house and ransom note, because if it's not plausible then why would the Ramseys try to stage it that way?

      But of course the RDI faction rejects IDI precisely because a kidnapping gone wrong is NOT plausible. Can't have it both ways, I'm afraid.

      In any case, I agree. Imo, it is simply not plausible that the Ramseys would try to stage kidnapping gone wrong.

      But we don't have to rely on anyone's opinion, mine, yours, or anyone else's. Because we know for a fact that the body was hidden in an obscure basement room, carefully wrapped in a blanket. AND the original panties were missing, replaced by a grossly oversized pair taken straight from a plastic package.

      If the Ramseys were staging a kidnapping gone wrong, there is no rhyme nor reason for them to stage it that way. A kidnapper who changed his mind would have simply left the body where it was and ran, NOT taken the trouble to redress it, cover it with a blanket, and hide it so carefully away.

      Even someone hoping to collect a ransom without actually taking the body with him would have no reason to wrap it in a blanket and certainly no reason to go hunting upstairs for a pair of fresh panties to redress it in. Nor would he have given John a full 24 hours to think about what to do and very possibly hunt in the house for his missing child. His phone call would have come that very morning, to get John out of the house as soon as possible, to collect the ransom and deliver it before the body could be discovered.

      So regardless of whether you are IDI, RDI or BDI, the kidnapping gone wrong scenario just doesn't work. The ransom note makes sense ONLY if the body has been removed from the house prior to calling the police. So -- once more with feeling: the person who called 911 could not have known who wrote that note and why.

    3. CH, thanks for clarifying what you meant. I understand what you are saying now and it makes total sense. Most noteworthy (and I don't believe this was ever brought up before, unless I've missed it) is your comment:

      "Also if "they" were staging a kidnapping gone wrong, they'd have at least finished the window staging before calling the police."

      So true!! We all have read from Doc that the early 911 call by Patsy implies that John and Patsy were not acting together, otherwise the body would have been removed. Well, the window staging would also have been completed! Since it was not complete and the police found no evidence of an intruder, someone had to "unstage" the window. None of this would have been an issue had Patsy and John actually been in on it together and all the staging, including removing the body, would have been finished before they notified the police.

      So, ruling Burke out, and ruling the "Ramseys" out, that leaves either Patsy alone or John alone as the murderer. Doc, maybe your next blog should revisit the PDI theory. I know you have continually ruled her out based on HER making that 911 call, but maybe, just maybe, she made that call anyway, out of pure hysteria and uncontrollable panic. Maybe John DID tell her to make that call and she couldn't refuse because he might become suspicious.

    4. I fully agree that the incomplete window staging is one more nail in the coffin of the "kidnapping gone wrong" scenario. Thanks for that, CH.

      As far as the question of whether Patsy might have been the guilty party, with John as the innocent dupe. No need for a separate post on that one. It was John who claimed he found that window open and then shut it without telling anyone till months later. And it was John who concocted the elaborate story about breaking the window earlier. It was John who went AWOL for over an hour while Arndt was trying to supervise everyone on her own. So sorry, but I see no reason to see John as the innocent in this situation.

    5. Doc, thank you for clarifying my thoughts. What you've written was what I was trying to say.


    6. Yes, once again Doc has very succinctly explained why Patsy is not a viable suspect and, even more importantly, why John IS. I got myself on a tangent yesterday, thinking that maybe Patsy WAS involved, either alone or with John in an attempt to cover for Burke. But what Doc said above has erased that absurd notion. You're right Doc -- no need to repeat a post on that. I should have just listened to the 911 tape again. Patsy is completely hysterical, out of breath and out of her mind that her daughter is missing. She's not faking.

      And as for Burke, I don't know what Kolar is thinking. That, too, is absurd. Too many reasons to list, but the most convincing thing for me is all the staging. A 9-year old just could not have done all of that.

  8. Well the cleaning lady said burke was constantly widdling wood with his red knife all through out the house making a mess.She asked Patsy to make him stop because she had to clean up after him. He did own the boot type (it had a novel compass hanging off the laces) print found in cellar. Pageants where JBs thing. Boy scouts and all its paraphanelia was Burkes thing. This includes knot mastery as a past time hobby...Something he could bond with Dad with.
    As for the presents in cellar the corners of packages were torn as if to peep what was inside. I,ve seen an image of it plus the dectectives ask Patsy about it I think in her first interview. She claims she ripped it. I doubt that because they were professionaly wrapped in fao swartz wrapper..The presents were ment to be given to cousins or such on a later date.. I'm starting to suspect that Burke could be the one because the sexual assult was violent in nature and did not involve semen..Maybe he couldn't stand her. alexandra

    1. alexandra, if we go only by what might seem suspicious and what might possibly have happened, then there is a long list of "likely suspects" to consider, from the housekeeper to Chris Wolf to Fleet White to Michael Helgoth (who allegedly owned both HiTec boots and a stun gun) to "Santa" and on and on and on endlessly it seems. Which is why I stick to the facts and the logic of the case, as presented in the above blog post.

  9. I think there's a good chance that Kolar is correct in suggesting Burke as the culprit, as I share the view that John and Patsy collaborated on the cover-up and would have done so only to protect Burke.

    I think Patsy likely wrote the ransom note at John's direction. I agree with all who say that it makes absolutely no sense to create a ransom note with the body in the house. But, I think the Ramseys had no choice but to try to deflect investigative efforts away from the family and the ransom note was the best plan they could gin up on such short notice. I doubt that they ever intended to remove the body from the house, too risky. Instead, I figure they expected the police to find the body, and then to stonewall the investigation (as they did), hire good lawyers and hope for the best.

    I'd like to dispel the notion that the Ramseys were taking great risk by the cover-up. I think, at most, they would have been convicted of being accessories after the fact (in some jurisdictions 'obstruction of justice'), which likely carries a 5-year max. But, I think they would have received much lesser sentences because the crime they were covering up was not prosecutable due to Burke's age. Nevertheless, the criminal justice is intended to discourage such conduct so I suspect that, if convicted, John, as the 'mastermind' of the cover-up, might have received a year in a minimum security facility with Patsy getting a probationary sentence. Obviously, just a guess but the important point is I think they decided that, whatever the risks, they were worth taking to save Burke from a lifetime of ignominy.

    Finally, it strikes me that this solution is consistent with the grand jury conclusions which would have charged both with being accessories after the fact to murder and with child abuse leading to death. On the latter point, I suspect that Burke and JB had been previously engaged in sexual exploration (which ultimately led to the murder) and that John and Patsy were aware of these activities but made an insufficient effort to put a stop to them.

    1. If you feel convinced that Patsy and John collaborated on the coverup then it does make sense to suspect Burke. But in that case you have to explain why his parents would have agreed to write a phoney ransom note and then call in the police without making any attempt to remove the body of the "kidnap" victim from the house. If they expected the police to find the body, then they would not have gone to all the trouble of writing a ransom note.

      And if they felt they needed a note to point to an outsider, then they would have written a note consistent with some sort of psychopath, taunting John rather than giving him detailed instructions on raising a ransom and expecting a phone call. Their "ransom" note was exposed as staging as soon as the body was found, and made them far more suspicious than before. It's because of that note that most people following the case suspect them today.

      As for the risk involved, the risk was NOT being accused as accessories to the crime, but being accused of "murder in the first degree," which is how it's phrased in the Grand Jury indictment. By staging in such a blatant manner they risked life imprisonment for murder one.

      If the Grand Jury had concluded that Burke murdered his sister, then "murder in the first degree" would not have been mentioned, because Burke could not be accused of that. And the Ramseys would have been accused of "conspiracy," which was not the case at all. Clearly the GJ believed that either Patsy or John committed murder, but could not decide which to indict, which is why the indictment is so ambiguous.

    2. I disagree that the ransom note posed a greater danger to John and Patsy than the alternative, which is offering no evidence in support of the intruder theory. Sure, one can challenge its content but, as time has proved, it confused law enforcement sufficiently to achieve its purpose.

      If John and Patsy are, in fact, innocent of the murder (but guilty of the cover-up), the likelihood of either being convicted of murder based upon the ransom note and other staging, is miniscule in my view. Sure, such mistakes occur in the criminal justice system, but in a high-profile case with skilled defense counsel, I don't see it as a reasonable likelihood.

    3. I feel compelled to repeat my earlier post - IF JR/PR had collaborated on the coverup to "save" Burke, and IF their plan was to stage a kidnapping gone wrong, then surely they'd have completed the window staging, thus providing a plausible entry point for the intruder.

      Instead there is no obvious point of entry. JR claims he broke the window and the undisturbed dirt, the grate, and the spider web tell us clearly that no one came in through that window.

      I'm convinced that JR is lying about breaking the window months prior. If they wanted to blame the crime on someone with a key, why bother breaking the window.

      It's clear, at least to me, that we have an incomplete staging at the window, and Doc's theory is the only one that makes sense of that.

      If they want to blame it on someone with a key they don't break the window. If they want to blame it on an intruder w/o a key, they complete the window staging.

      Once again BDI theory can't stand up to basic common sense.


    4. It seems to me that your criticism of the John/Patsy joint cover-up (incomplete staging) would apply as well to the scenario where John is the sole culprit.

    5. "It seems to me that your criticism of the John/Patsy joint cover-up (incomplete staging) would apply as well to the scenario where John is the sole culprit. " '

      I'm not sure I follow.

      Incomplete staging only makes sense with JR as the sole culprit. If JR/PR worked together then they'd complete the staging. Nothing would be stopping them from completing the staging. There was no time pressure to make the 911 call. They'd have to cancel their flight to MI in any case, so that is irrelevant. They could make the 911 call at 6:30. or at 7:15 or at 9:05, or the next day, which is consistent with the RN.

      John working alone would also complete the staging if he could, but Patsy can (and did) disrupt the plan by calling 911 before he had completed his work.

      Consider also that if they were working together, there would be no reason for the repeated warnings in the RN. One or two perhaps, to make it look good, but several warnings look suspicious if the plan is to violate the warnings and call police anyway.

      IMO, if the worked together, it's unlikely they'd stage a kidnapping gone wrong. But even if they did, they'd certainly have either staged consistent with an intruder who had a key (e.g. no window break) or consistent with an intruder who had no key (e.g. broken window, grate removed, which would also destroy the spider web, and dirt on the sill disturbed) That the window staging is incomplete makes no sense in a joint venture.


    6. I understand your point now. Thanks for clarifying.

  10. I have commented on this blog a few times and debated with Doc, as at one point I thought BDI. That being said, I have fully come around to JDI and see no other explanation. Could Burke have done it and JR helped him cover it up? Yes, its possible. But,the PDI theoy is just ludicrous. If PDI, then why does JR lie about the broken window? Why would PR lie for JR about the broken window? Why does JR disappear while Detective Arndt is in the house? Why does JR so quickly have a team rule him out? If PR did it, then there would have been no reason for JR to do all of these suspicious acts.
    As Doc has said over and over, snce Patsy was the one who called 911, it HAS to rule her out as being the murderer. If Patsy had committed this awful crime, then taken time to tie knot around JBR's neck, write an extensive RN, why call 911 and spoil all the efforts she made to make it look like a kidnapping?
    Also, IF Patsy comitted this crime, then why havent JR or BR said as such? They both have been blamed for this horriffic crime, so why not clear their name and just say that Patsy (who passed away) did it?
    Lastly, IF BR took his sister downstairs, hit her over the head and killed her, he would have had to go wake up his Dad, without waking his Mom for help. Then JR and BR would be downstairs covering up their crime, all the while PR sleeps the night away? Im rambling, but we can all create theories that somehow BDI, PDI, or an intruder did it, but the answer that is most logical is simply that JR and JR only committed the murder of his daughter.


  11. While John may be the culprit, that scenario has problems in my mind. First and foremost, it requires that he convince Patsy that the murder was committed by an intruder when there is no supporting evidence. I'm convinced that in the hours and days following the murder, Patsy on a visceral level would have concluded that John did it. The fact that handwriting experts excluded John down the road does not change my conclusion as to how Patsy would have reacted from the outset. Second, it strikes me as extremely unlikely that a mother whose daughter has been brutally murdered, and who had absolutely no involvement in either the murder or the cover-up, would actively mislead investigators who are trying to identify the killer. Why, for goodness sake? Also, it strikes me as unlikely that Patsy would have slept through John's absence from their bed for the several hours necessary to commit the crime and stage the cover-up. The fact that she wore the same outfit the next day, while not compelling in and of itself, lends support to the notion that she was up all night collaborating with John on the ransom note and staging.

    1. What you say does make some sense, yes. But we have to remember that, assuming she was innocent and not faking it, Patsy would have been in a state of shock for days if not weeks after the crime. She was reported to be under heavy sedation for days on end, hardly able to lift herself from her bed. And if you think about it, it's hard to see any reason why she would have suspected John. Nor is there any reason to assume she'd be in any mood to morph from a housewife into a sleuth. Nor any reason to assume she would have wanted to second guess the police, who were being very cautious about their theories.

      The police had made no attempt to arrest John and were in fact not accusing him of anything at that time. Despite the fact that he was initially the leading suspect, they never actually named him as such publicly and were in fact very careful about how they expressed any of their suspicions.

      It's true that Patsy reportedly went to sleep before John came to bed and woke up after he was already in the shower -- and it's also true that she might have noticed at some point that he wasn't in bed next to her. However, it's not at all unusual for men of his age to get up from bed in the middle of the night to urinate, so his absence from her side would probably not have been unusual, assuming she even noticed it. She would simply have rolled over and gone back to sleep.

      Realistically, I see no reason for Patsy to have suspected John at all and very good reason for her to support him, since, as he would have reminded her, they were "in it together" and needed to present a united front. Or else.

    2. I'd like to add that from the beginning any suspicions directed their way via the media or the public were directed NOT specifically at John or Patsy, but "the Ramseys." The thinking of literally everyone following the case was that either an intruder did it or "the Ramseys" did it. If Patsy were innocent, as I feel sure she was, then she would have known very well that all the accusations directed against "the Ramseys" were false. So it would have been easy for her to dismiss them.

      I see no reason to assume that she didn't trust John completely from the start. He is clearly a master at manipulation and deception. If he was able to fool even Steve Thomas, who gave him "a pass," and also Lou Smit and so many others, then I see no reason why he could not fool Patsy. And Burke as well, by the way.

    3. Again and obviously, I can't say John is not the culprit. I wish I knew. But, the fact that he could fool Thomas and Smit and others is much different than fooling his wife of 16 years about the murder of their daughter in their house.

    4. People see what they want to see. And fail to see what they don't want to see.

    5. Maybe so. Thanks again for all your efforts in researching this case and managing the website.

  12. Casey Anthony clearly killed her daughter, blamed her Dad for molesting her and ran her parents life through the mud. But, towards the end of the trial, her Mom still lied on the stand about searching for chloroform on the computer to save her daughter. JR seemed like he could manipulate and control a situation, so I dont see any reason why he couldnt convince Patsy that he didnt do it.

    1. At the risk of creating additional of the fascinating aspects of this case is that it lends itself to various mutually-exclusive conclusions. And, as the lead investigators have reached various solutions, it only makes sense that we armchair sleuths would as well.

      While I realize that most folks posting here subscribe to DocG's solution, which I certainly respect, like Kolar I lean to Burke as the culprit. To beat a dead horse (sorry), it is simply inconceivable to me that a mother whose child has been murdered, and who had absolutely no involvement in the murder or resulting cover-up including staging, would intentionally mislead the investigators who are desperately seeking to identify the killer. Refusing to cooperate I can see, especially if targeted by the police, but I just can't buy lying to investigators, notwithstanding the justification offered by others (John as 'Svengali' it seems to me). So, I must conclude that Patsy either committed the murder and participated in the cover-up, or just participated in the cover-up.

      Frankly, I don't see Patsy as the killer. While mothers have certainly murdered their kids in the past, the few cases that I recall involve either psychotics or frighteningly cold-blooded women who wished to pursue relationships or a lifestyle that was foreclosed by raising children. Patsy fits neither category.

      Now, assuming she participated in the cover-up, I don't see her as clever enough to perform the staging and other aspects of the cover-up, including responding to police interrogations, without assistance. Besides, I think John would have likely smelled a rat in Patsy's extended absence from bed the night of the murder.

      Instead, it strikes me that both learned of the murder at the same time and embarked on the staging with John as the 'mastermind.' And, I think Patsy wrote the ransom note at John's direction. As others have suggested, the only person they might have covered for would have been Burke, to protect him from a life of Hell. Sure, they took a risk -- conviction for being accessories -- but I can see how they could justify it in their minds.

      This solution, juvenile sexual exploration run amok, seems more probable to me, especially in light of JB's pageantry persona, than assuming either parent committed murder to cover up acts of pedophilia.

      Of course, the above analysis may be totally bogus. Nevertheless, I think there are gaps in the case against John as the sole culprit:

      No expert thinks he wrote the note.
      No one has ever accused him of child abuse in the past.
      Hard to imagine Patsy sleeping through his activities the night of the murder.
      Hard to imagine Patsy, as clothes-horse, wearing same outfit the next day unless awake all night.
      Hard to imagine (I recognize others differ) John being able to fool Patsy into believing murder committed by intruder in the absence of evidence. I suspect that, on a gut level, she would have "known" John was the culprit and, at a minimum, refused to participate in the cover-up.

      The strongest argument, as I see it, in support of John as sole culprit is the fact that Patsy made the 911 call while the body was still in the house. The answer could well be that John and Patsy never intended to remove the body from the house as that would have certainly been quite risky. Perhaps they assumed the police would discover the body and that the ransom note and other aspects of staging, as well as effectively refusing to cooperate with investigators, would confuse the police sufficiently to achieve the desired result.

      I apologize for restating points I've made already, and that have been responded to. But, I thought there may be some virtue in laying out this analysis in one fell swoop.

      Thanks again to Doc for tolerating dissenting views.

    2. You make some excellent points. But as usual I'm going to fall back on my favored method, i.e., sticking with the facts.

      No expert thinks he wrote the note. -- OPINION

      No one has ever accused him of child abuse in the past. -- ALWAYS A FIRST TIME

      Hard to imagine Patsy sleeping through his activities the night of the murder. -- ASSUMPTION (actually if she'd gotten up and surprised him in action then imo she too would have been murdered)

      Hard to imagine Patsy, as clothes-horse, wearing same outfit the next day unless awake all night. -- ASSUMPTION

      Hard to imagine (I recognize others differ) John being able to fool Patsy into believing murder committed by intruder in the absence of evidence. I suspect that, on a gut level, she would have "known" John was the culprit and, at a minimum, refused to participate in the cover-up. OPINION.

      There are a great many opinions, assumptions, etc. in this case. In my opinion, for example, there is no way frail 9 year old Burke would have had the slightest sexual interest in his 6 year old sister. That too is an opinion, of course. If we went according to such opinions we'd never get anywhere.

      So sorry, but I feel we have no choice but to deal first and foremost with the facts. And Patsy calling 911 is one of those facts. There is no getting around it. It's not an assumption nor is it an opinion. And her offering an alternative version of whose decision it was to make that call is also a FACT. And that version contradicts the one offered by John in the CNN interview and by her in their book.

      So we have to ask ourselves why Patsy and not John would make that call? And why Patsy would offer a version of what happened prior to that call that differs from the "official" version presented in their book. It seems clear from the fact that Patsy made the call that she could not have been involved in the kidnap staging. Which means she could not have been covering for Burke. And it also seems clear from the differing versions of whose idea it was to make that call that despite her lack of involvement in the staging, she was still, nevertheless, willing to lie to support John's version of what happened.

      These are not suppositions, or assumptions or opinions, but logical inferences based on FACTS. As I see it the reliance on facts and straightforward inferences based on those facts is the only pathway through the maze of this case. If we are satisfied in just insisting on our opinions then we will always be going round in circles.

  13. The conundrum is that we don't know all the critical facts. If we did, they might dictate a result other than John as sole culprit.

    Maybe Patsy and John, in collaborating on cover-up, failed to discuss and get their 'story straight' as to who decided that Patsy should make the 911 call.

    1. Forgot to ask: which handwriting experts concluded that John wrote the note? I believe MY statement to be factual, not my opinion. Now, the determination of an expert as to who wrote the note would be an opinion, albeit an expert opinion.

    2. We can't possibly know all the facts. But the facts we do know are, imo, sufficient to identify the person who wrote the note, who is by far more likely to be the killer than his 9 year old son.

      Patsy and John DID get their story straight. They agreed to testify that calling the police was John's idea. However, in a weak moment, Patsy presented a very different version of that story to an interviewer. THAT is a fact -- and what that tells us is that she was willing to lie to support John. But NONE of the above tells us she was involved in the coverup. That is an assumption, not a fact. Her 911 calls tells us she was NOT involved in the coverup.

      No handwriting expert has ever concluded that John wrote the note. Imo it's not possible to conclude who wrote or who didn't simply on the basis of the handwriting evidence. That would in any case only be an opinion, as you say.

      My conclusion that John wrote the note is not based on an analysis of the handwriting evidence, but on the logic of the 911 call. And that conclusion is backed up by a considerable amount of additional evidence as presented on this blog and in my book.

  14. A couple final thoughts, as it's clear that no one is changing anyone else's mind:

    I disagree that the public has sufficient facts to solve this case with any degree of certainty. This is borne out by the poll on the Websleuths site showing that internet sleuths who follow the case closely have conclusions that are all over the map.

    James Kolar, on the other hand, a career investigator with 30+ years experience, had access to the entire 60,000 pages of the investigative files while serving as lead investigator for the DA's office. Accordingly, it seems to me that his strong suggestion that Burke is the culprit should not be discounted.

    In the end, I don't think that I will be satisfied as to any conclusion in the absence of new disclosures.

    1. James Kolar is a detective and in all likelihood a highly competent one. His conclusions regarding the dubious intruder theory are based on his detective work and are indeed convincing. But his inferences regarding Burke's involvement are not based on detective work, but on conjectures regarding child psychology, a field in which he is certainly not an expert. Since there is no evidence at all even suggesting Burke's involvement and all sorts of evidence pointing clearly to his father's involvement, I found the last section of his book to be extremely unconvincing and disappointing. And if we read between the lines it becomes clear that his colleagues felt the same way.

    2. "James Kolar, on the other hand, a career investigator with 30+ years experience, had access to the entire 60,000 pages of the investigative files while serving as lead investigator for the DA's office. Accordingly, it seems to me that his strong suggestion that Burke is the culprit should not be discounted."

      But then how do you square that with ST's theory of the case? He too is a professional detective, the one who worked the case, and had access to all the files - in fact contributed to making most of the files. So if you lend credence to JK's thoery aren't you discounting ST's theory?

      Then of course there is LS. He too was a professional detective, probably with a better reputation than either JK or ST. He doesn't think it was Burke either. So how do you justify discounting his theory?

      It should be obvious that at least two, and possible all, of the detectives who've worked the case and/or had access to the files are wrong. Why is it less likely that Kolar is wrong than ST or LS?

      I think it's likely all of them are wrong.

    3. Believe what you will. Kolar came to the case last, after both Thomas and Smit, so would have the benefit of their analyses, as well as any additional information developed since their tenures on the case. Nevertheless, my point is that we don't know enough to form a definitive conclusion and, thus, Kolar's analysis is at least as valid as DocG's (with all due respect).

  15. Kolar's isn't as valid because it doesn't make sense. There is no physical evidence tying Burke to the killing, and there is no way that the adult Ranseys would risk prison/execution when Burke could not be prosecuted.

    Were it possible for BR to be convicted of murder and spend many years in prison, I might be able to believe JR and PR were (both ) willing to give up their freedom (possibly their lives) to "save" Burke. But Burke couldn't be charged with jay-walking, much less murder, so risking their lives seems very unlikely.

    Sorry but Kolar's thinking cap fell off on the floor and the dog ran outside with it.

    1. You don't know what you're talking about. If the parents are, in fact, guilty of only the cover-up, they didn't risk life imprisonment, much less execution, by their actions.

    2. The certainly did risk life imprisonment, because they risked being accused of "murder in the first degree," to use the wording in the indictment. If they were "only" covering for Burke, that doesn't mean the police or DA would have seen in that way. In fact Burke was never even a suspect. It was John and Patsy themselves who were under that "umbrella of suspicion." And if it had been determined that John or Patsy had written that note, I can guarantee you that person would have been put on trial for murder, NOT covering up for a 9 year old child.

    3. We'll just have to disagree on this. It is true that the criminal justice system at times makes mistakes, and even prosecutes people for murder who are 100% innocent of that murder as you are suggesting could have happened here. But, those rare cases are typically characterized by shoddy investigations and ineffective defense counsel. The likelihood of that happening here, given the extensiveness of the investigation and skills of defense counsel, I think was quite remote.

      Further, if in fact the parents did collaborate on the cover-up to protect Burke, I doubt that the likely consequences of their actions ever entered their minds.

    4. How could the consequences of their actions not enter their minds when they were suspects in a murder case? If this was staged to cover for Burke (and it wasn't) then it was staged so badly that it made it look as if at least one, and possibly both, parents killed JBR then staged a phoney kidnapping.

      They ran substantial risk of being prosecuted for murder, and they continued to run that risk for years. There is no reason for that level of risk when BR could not be charged.

  16. I've been asked to post this comment for "Brooke," who was unable to post it herself, for some reason. If anyone else also has problems, please email me. Thanks.

    The comment is too long to post all at once, so I'm dividing into two parts:

    Aside from speculation as to whether or not the Ramseys were aware of the legalities of possible prosecution of Burke or themselves, I do not believe they covered for Burke based on the following points:

    1. The garrote. What would be the purpose of the garrote and putting it on Jon Benet? Certainly there would be other ways to make it look like she had been murdered by an intruder without having to take the time to construct such a grisly device which was very tight around her neck. I don't believe they could have done that in the first place, after just learning that their daughter had been killed by their son. And if Burke was the one who had constructed the garrote and tightened it, then I find it equally unbelievable that either parent would leave it on her once they saw her body. Think about it. If they just learned that their son had killed their daughter and then they saw her lifeless body with a cord tightened around her neck, wouldn't you think their first instinct would be to take that cord off?

    2. The underpants. What would the purpose of changing her underpants be, unless they were foolish enough to think that Burke might have left semen in her original panties? And if they were so foolish (he was, in fact, prepubescent) and wanted to dispose of her panties, Patsy surely would have been the one to redress her and she would not have used those brand new, over-sized panties that were meant as a gift for another girl. Patsy would have known where to find Jon Benet's own panties.

    3. Hiding the body. What would the purpose of this be? If they wanted to make it look like a kidnapping, they would have immediately gotten rid of the body. John would have put it in the trunk of his car and driven off to dispose of it. If, on the other hand, they could not bear disposing of her body and decided to make it look like a kidnapping gone wrong, why wouldn't they leave the body out in the open to suggest the "kidnappers" fled in a panic when she was killed.

    4. The elaborate ransom note. Why write such a huge ransom note, especially with the body still in the house? As stated above, if they decided they just couldn't bear dumping their daughter's body somewhere (and I don't think they could have), then why not abandon the kidnapping story altogether and make it appear like an intruder entered the house, assaulted Jon Benet and then killed her? Then there would be no need for any note and no reason to dispose of her body. And the 911 call at that time would fit. But since there was a ransom note and since the body was still in the house, it does not fit a coverup for Burke.

    1. Here's part two of Brooke's comment:

      All of these questions CAN, however, be answered if you look at John as the murderer:

      1. The garrote. I know it's debated, but I believe Jon Benet was already dead or at least unconscious when the garrote was put on her. Therefore, it wouldn't have bothered John to do it in his efforts to stage that a psychopathic pedophile killed her. He may have thought the police would never think that anyone in the family could do such a horrific thing.

      2. The underpants. It IS possible that John's semen was left in Jon Benet's original panties and he would have had to dispose of them and replace them with fresh panties, which were obviously not Jon Benet's because he grabbed the first ones he found. (and by the way, this fact points away from both an intruder or Patsy . . . .it is far fetched that an intruder would take the time to re-dress her and Patsy would have no reason to re-dress her)

      3. Hiding the body. The body was hid because John DID plan on getting it out of the house. He even had it all bundled up and ready to go. But he didn't get the opportunity, so he obviously felt it best to "discover" her body himself, thereby contaminating any evidence.

      4. The ransom note. John DID want it to look like a kidnapping, complete with a missing child. The ransom note carved out the opportunity that he needed to remove the body, but he was unable to do it because Patsy called 911.

      Burke did not kill his sister. If he did and IF his parents decided to cover for him, rather than get him the psychiatric help he would have needed, they would not have gone through such elaborate lengths --- lengths that don't make sense -- to cover for him. But they do make sense when you look at John covering for himself.

    2. Very sensible. I particularly like the part about the garotte, because, as you say, such a device seems like absurd overkill as staging, and one can't imagine parents even thinking about doing something like that to the body of their child. And if Burke had constructed it, then, as you say, it's hard to believe the parents would have left it in place. They would certainly have removed it.

    3. I agree with most of the second part as well. Only I seriously doubt that John would have constructed the "garotte" as staging. There would have been no need for that, since, as is well known, many kidnappers kill their victims simply to make sure they can't be identified. I think the garotte was constructed simply as a convenient strangulation device so he wouldn't have had to actually place his hands directly on his victim while strangling her. Note that neither the head blow nor the ligature strangulation involved direct contact with his daughter. Perhaps strangling her by hand would have been a bit too personal for his taste.

  17. Brooke,

    It is refreshing to see someone reasoning logically about the case.


  18. Re: the garrotte,

    First, I don't believe BDI for a moment, but for the sake of discussion let's say it was BDI and BR made and applied the garrotte.

    I suppose that JR/PR might have little choice but to leave the garrotte, as it's obvious JBR is dead, and just as obvious she's been strangled. To remove the garrote would still leave the tell-tale signs of ligature strangulation and would raise the question - why would the intruder remove it?

    The only reasonable explanation for JR/PR removing the garrotte would be if they thought JBR might still be alive. They'd remove the garrotte and check for signs of breathing. Of course this would be followed by a call for an ambulance, not a call about a RN and pretending not to know where JBR is.


  19. I am new to this, but have just read the Ramsey's, Kolar's and DocG's books. That said, I have not seen independent analysis of the psychology and character of the Ramsays.

    Some thoughts:

    John was said to have had a 2 year affair which broke up his first marriage. That would entail an ability to live a life of lying and deception for years. Where is the so-called devoted father and husband in this?

    Then, he met and married Patsy who was just out of college. What did she think she was getting? This is certainly whitewashed in the "Death of Innocence" book, where
    his first marriage is barely acknowledged. They almost infer that the "older kids" belong to both of them.

    Also, the Philippines is notorious for being a sexual playground for American servicemen. Did this have an effect on John which led to comfort with adultery?
    Did he develop habits which required him to frequently be away from home "on business"? Did financial concerns, a sick wife, and a sexualized daughter push him over some kind of brink?

    Patsy's cancer could have caused some of her puzzling behavior. There is such a
    thing as chemo-brain. Plus, she may have been taking hormone suppressant drugs
    even after she was declared cancer free. These drugs, and anti-depressants can cause fuzzy thinking and delusion. Her inability to think clearly could account for her failure to suspect her husband or challenge his conflicting statements and weird behavior. Also, she was the product of a sexist Southern culture which expects women to defer to and follow their husbands, no matter what.

    Her beauty pageant ambitions for JonBenet are distasteful, and in retrospect show poor judgment, but I do not think she could have had anything to do with the horrible desecration of her daughter's body. Even if she hadn't been devoted to JonBenet, which she clearly was, to destroy the child's beauty would be unthinkable.

    What appeared to be her cover-up statements and behavior were engineered by her husband and his lawyers. It seems to me, she was a drugged out religious fanatic, and why wouldn't she be? What could she do if she came to the conclusion there was no intruder? Her husband was her strength, her support, and the source of her income.
    How could she face the fact that it might all be an illusion? Who would listen to her,
    since she was under suspicion herself?

    Any thoughts?


    1. Mary/ Myrtle, I must say your assessment of the psychology rings true to me. Although I'm skeptical regarding the significance of psychological analysis (or profiling) in establishing guilt, it is certainly a useful tool in helping us understand what happened and why. Your observations are convincing. Thanks.

  20. Myrtle, seriously you cannot think that college-educated women raised in the 60's and 70's are deferential to men as you suggest. As a southern woman who is the same age as Patsy, holds an engineering degree from a southern college, I cannot name one female who would behave as you suggest. Patsy could have been afraid, and then we know she was heavily sedated. I must say, you sound like a bigot yourself, if for no other reason than you refer to her as a religious fanatic! What do you base that on? Her being a Prebyterian or Episcopalian?

    1. I too would be reluctant to picture Patsy as a religious fanatic. Otherwise, however, Myrtle's assessment makes sense to me. Patsy went through chemotherapy, which could have affected her memory, and was also under heavy sedation, which may well have made her vulnerable to manipulation by John and his lawyers. And she DID come from a cultural milieu in which women were expected to defer to their husbands. I don't see that as a sexist remark at all. This is in fact the sort of observation many feminists have made.

    2. I love your blog DocG, keep up the great work! :) I check it daily.
      I am fascinated by the Ramsey case, and I have read everything known to man on this case. YOUR theory seems the most plausible to me, by far.
      I do have some questions, and I was wondering if you could share your thoughts on them. Regarding a jonbenet documentary that aired in the bbc, via the help of Michael Tracey:
      1.) Do you think micheal helgoth seems like a probable suspect??? (When Wolf dog hairs, high tech boots, and a stun gun were ALL found in his house. (All these elements were proven to be at the Crime scene of JB)
      2.) helgoths suicide was very suspicious and it strongly appears foul play. He was Killed right after DA stated the list of suspects narrows. Do you think all these elements could be merely coincidental???
      3.) I tend to agree with your theory 99%.... But 1 % of me thinks there are too many factors pointing to helgoth and another suspect involved.
      Would love to hear your thoughts, thank you!!

  21. the helgoth theory is bullshit. stun gun was never used.

  22. Please read this: I believe the housekeeper did it

  23. LHP knew every detail of the Ramseys and the house, she mentions it so boldly in her book please read it, she talks about PR handwriting and how she use to watch her and take note of the phrases. Besides PR and JR knowing about the knife she did too. I think this is her confession, how she the murder played out. She could easily have hired someone to do it, she had the keys. She stopped working for the Ramseys 3 days before murder. And from what I can tell she sounds very bitter

    1. Thanks for posting that link. I knew Linda had written a book but I'd assumed none of it ever got published. All I've ever seen was an interview in one of the tabloids.

      It's important to realize that she was put up to writing that book by her lawyer, none other than Darnay Hoffman, the same person who hired all those handwriting "experts" who claimed Patsy wrote the note. (The consensus of the far more qualified LE experts was "unlikely".) And the theory presented in the book is in fact Darnay's theory, based on Steve Thomas's theory -- which as I've demonstrated on this blog, is a totally unlikely fantasy. The smoothly literary language tells me the book was ghost written, probably by Darnay himself, so everything in it needs to be taken with a huge grain of salt -- because Darnay did everything within his power to pin the murder on Patsy. It seems clear to me that he manipulated Linda with the hope that her book would make lots of money. To my knowledge, it was, for some reason, never published.

      She did not stop working for the Ramseys prior to the murder. Where did you get that?

      As for the possibility that Linda was involved, it's no more likely than any other theory that's ever been floated about this case, involving roughly a dozen "likely" suspects. What all these theories have in common is that they can't account for all the circumstances of the case. If Linda were involved with some others in a plot to kidnap JonBenet, then she would have been kidnapped. But she wasn't. The note would not have been hand written but printed. (Actually a note wasn't needed -- a phone call first thing in the morning would have worked as well.) And there would certainly have been no need to use a note pad taken from the house. While Linda claims she sees Patsy's writing style and handwriting in the note, it's clear that the note is not an attempt to forge either John or Patsy's hand, and no one experienced with handwriting analysis has ever even suggested that. And in fact, as I've demonstrated, the writing in the note looks nothing like Patsy's hand, regardless of what Linda (i.e., Darnay) has claimed.

  24. What are the odds that with the repeated molestation of this girl, may have been committed by the father (less and less unlikely anymore, sad to say) and the mother by accident injured the child, so in a desperate attempt, they conspired to create the cover-up jointly to cover their joint actions - one of those you don't rat me out, I don't rat you out concepts. Have known couples to come together in times of crisis with underlying blackmail on each other... and in fear of repercussions both will take to their graves.

    1. Please allow me to elaborate: On one of the earlier 'Unsolved Mysteries' episodes, there was discussion and luminol tests conducted in the kitchen in and around the kitchen table where JonBenet was seated, eating her bowl of food. The Luminol test showed blood spatter up the wall, around the floor and some minute blood spatters on a table leg... The blood was cleaned up well enough that DNA was not obtainable from most of the kitchen but the small spatter were consistent with that of JBR,and from all I have seen and heard here is my scenario, and this is ONLY my opinion based on all the evidences provided from multiple sources:
      In weak state of Patsy's health , John turns his sexual frustrations to his daughter (less uncommon than most people think) leading to JonBenet wetting the bed.
      That night after JR does his act, JonBenet cleans herself up a bit and goes downstairs to eat some food to try to comfort herself.
      PR awakes to check on JBR, and discovers the mess in the bed, and goes downstairs. In a rage of the mess (has been stated over and over PR was getting furious over the bed soiling issue) and comes up from behind, and smacks JBR in the head with a hard blunt object, harder than she anticipated (autopsy showed mass blood pooling on the brain, and in the area of crushed skull indicating this nearly HAD to be the first blow). JBR falls to the floor bleeding and convulsing.
      PR then gets JR, and they together grab the blanket and wrap her up and take her into the basement realizing they just made the mistake of their lives, now they HAVE to cover their tracks.
      PR KNOWS JR has been having his way with JBR, so now they are both in it deep. In a desperate attempt, they finish her off. In an effort to cover their tracks, they devise this scheme of an elaborate "outsider break-in" including obtaining "foreign DNA" to throw the police off their backs, ransom note etc., dispose of anything to prove the tampering, then take a small nap, and call police.
      When police arrive, JUST to help cover up more, they take the opportunity to help even diminish THAT evidence while "trying to co-operate with police", creating a nearly unsolvable crime.

    2. First, there is no evidence that DNA was planted. Second, your scenario is inconsistent with the fact that Patsy called 911 with JBR's body still in the house. Third, I see no reason to involved Patsy if we assume that John was the molester. If he was molesting her then he would have been the one with a motive to murder her. Since as I have demonstrated, his writing is far closer to the writing on the note than Patsy's, it looks to me as though he did it all and she had nothing to do with it. For details, please read more in this blog.

  25. I lived in Boulder 3 houses down from the Ramsey's. I was awake midnight of
    Dec 25/26 with my bedroom open on my side of the bed . No one spoke to me 12/26 or after although one reporter chatted with my husband that day.
    If anyone is interested in knowing what I did or did not hear, let me know!

    1. Dear Elizabeth, I just sent you an email. I am very interested to know what you heard the night of the 25th/morning of the 26th. Thank you so much. Heidi

    2. I am almost finished reading Kohler's book. I have already read Steve Thomas's and it was very interesting. I was 7 years old when JonBenet was murdered but I still remember it all over the news and it was very scary.

  26. I am new to this blog and throughly fascinated by the logical thought process. Here is my question, how could John Ramsey raise two older daughters with no history of abuse, abuse and murder Jonbenet and then continue to live a normal life. Wouldn't there be some red flags by now?

  27. I believe Burke committed the crime..I believe Jon Benet caught him up that night poking holes with his knife into the gifts that did not belong to them (but the cousins gifts meant to b given another day) I think he n her got into it n he probably snapped did her harm drug her downstairs n completed his portion of the act..I think the statement of the 911 phone call enhancement where Burke is heard pleading "what do I do" is a good indicator of this and of course Patsy would freak be hysterical while on the line with 911 as things are unfolding she just woke up to her little girl murdered by her son! I think both parents took the risks and covered up for Burke by staging what they could of the scene..Patsy writing the note n John reapplying panties (hoping to keep the sexual assault not evident at that moment) the covering of her body with the sheet/blanket suggests remorse..either by Burke after the fact or John in having to cover it up..I believe Burke was capable of the knot n sexual assault..however it couldve been used to muddy the waters by the parents .there couldve been abuse to Burke causing this psychotic break and also previous sexual behavior w the siblings..maybe John sexually abused Burke n Burke continued that behavior w his sister.would make alot of sense in why he acted the way he did n said what he said during his child psychologist interview and it also helps explain why the parents would go to the extent to cover it up (even if Patsy didn't know of the abuse John would def make sure she complied anyways using her emotions with Burke she already lost one child) and the thing that's holding people up is the window n the body still being present..they just probably panicked a bit did their best in the short amount of time they had (because they would've known the Ramsey's were scheduled for flight by flight log n therefore they needed to act quickly ..they didnt have all the time some state on here) they never planned on moving the no time two could b seen three that couldve spread evidence n DNA in areas they didn't want it and FOUR being the most probable they wanted their babys body safe to be laid to rest appropriately after all this..think about it youre not gonna go throw her outside somewhere ..Patsy was probably the one most likely to crack but now that she's deceased I don't think either John nor Burke will ever tell the truth both for their own reasons I'm sure..I do however think burke will reoffend..if he in fact committed this crime like I think.even if Burke wasn't abused the distant behaviors of his dad n his mom preoccupied by his sister couldve easily damaged him to the point he was broken emotionally n shit off himself n add in being spoiled and alone to his own thoughts n devices..perfect storm for a 9 yr old to start commiting sexual acts along with increasing violence or behavior to get someone to pay attention..