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) live.com, 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.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Comment Suggestions

First of all I want to thank all those commenting here. Your thoughts, questions, theories and other comments, even the negative ones, have helped make this blog interesting, meaningful and relevant. You've noted, I hope, that I don't censor posts -- unless they are redundant, irrelevant, inordinately rude or outright spam. Even then I've deleted only a very small number of posts since day one -- as I recall, only maybe six or seven (most of which came from the same redundant source). All viewpoints are welcome here.

I've encountered some problems with some comments, however, that I'd like all readers to be aware of. First of all, try not to comment on posts that already have a great many comments after them, since I've noticed that some get lost that way. For example, a comment was recently sent in response to one of the earliest, and most commented, posts, "Case Solved," and I was not able to find it on the blog (it was also sent to my email which is why I found it at all). When too many comments get posted, the blog provides a second page, but sometimes that second page can't be accessed. Or else it just gets lost in the crowd. Bugs in the software, I guess.

Another problem with posting comments that way is that they are never seen by most readers -- due to another Blogspot bug that prevents me from displaying the most recent comments. (I originally set it up that way but it's stopped working.) For these reasons, I would suggest that all new comments be posted after the most recent blog post, even if they are in response to something posted earlier. If you describe the issue clearly there should be no confusion. That way those reading the most recent post will be able to see your comment, and respond if they like, and so will I.

Finally, it would be a big help in keeping track of who said what if everyone would comment with an actual name rather than anonymously. Or, if you prefer commenting anonymously, at least add your name -- or moniker -- at the end of the post. Knowing who posted a comment helps all of us keep track of all the various viewpoints and respond accordingly.

I'll now add the lost comment I mentioned earlier as the first comment after this post. I'll try to respond as soon as I get some more free time.

Again, thanks for reading -- and commenting.

169 comments:

  1. This is the lost comment I referred to above. It's unsigned:

    Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Case Solved":

    I just do not understand a few things:

    1. The neighbor claiming they heard a girl scream, if this is the case, how did the parents not hear it and wake up?

    2. The sound of metal scraping on the ground, perhaps the grate in front of the window?

    3. Lights on in the kitchen late, again per the neighbors.

    4. If it was an intruder, why only target JBR?

    5. DNA found on JBR that does not belong to BR, PR or JR. Well then who does it belong to????

    So confused........fingers pointing in so many directions....

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    1. I'll begin my reply by restating once again my conviction that following the facts, i.e., the undisputed facts, and only the facts, not letting yourself get bogged down in all the many inconclusive and inconsistent bits of "evidence" and all the "likely" suspects, is really the only way to deal with a case like this.

      One should never ignore any piece of evidence, of course. And one should be able to offer a reasonable explanation for any evidence that seems to contradict ones theory. But following "the evidence" in this case has led to far too many dead ends, because so much of it is inconclusive and therefore, confusing.

      Now to your questions:

      1. The neighbor, Melody Stanton, was ultimately not sure what she heard or when. Eyewitness testimony of this sort is notoriously unreliable. The investigators did sound tests and determined that the scream might not have been audible upstairs if it had emanated from certain rooms in the basement, and since there was a basement window left partially open for lighting wires to pass through, the sound of the scream could have been heard from outside even if not from inside. (The open window was barred, incidentally.) On many occasions I too have heard screams in the night, only to realize they were coming from an amorous neighborhood cat.

      2. The sound of metal scraping was heard by Stanton's husband. It could have meant anything at all and very likely had a totally innocent source. People have assumed it might have been caused by someone opening the basement window grate, but all the evidence pointed away from anyone entering the house through that window, or even moving the grate, since an undisturbed spider web was seen connecting the grate to the adjoining lawn.

      3. There is some confusion about what lights were on or off. It's certainly possible, and in fact likely, that John could have turned on some lights during the night (assuming you accept my theory). But so could an intruder. So even if accurate this evidence tells us little.

      4. Since in my view there could not have been an intruder, I need not answer that question. But you make a good point, because an intruder out to "get" John, which seems to be the prevailing team Ramsey theory, would most likely have attacked him and not his totally innocent daughter.

      5. James Kolar, who was the lead detective on the case at one point, and privy to all the evidence collected by the investigators, said in his book that DNA from six different unidentified individuals was found at the crime scene, presumably on the victim's clothing. Which tells us how easy it is for DNA to be transmitted in a totally innocent manner. The fact that unknown DNA was found on JBR tells us nothing unless it can be matched to a likely suspect. It certainly does NOT tell us that she was attacked by an intruder. For more on this I recommend Kolar's book and also if you do a search for "DNA" on this blog you'll find many more good reasons for discounting this very deceptive "evidence."

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    2. Wow, DocG. Nice blog. I do remember being so irritated with you at Webbsleuths. Glad to see you're still hanging in there for justice for JonBenet even though I still disagree with you about who did it.

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    3. Hi Jack. Nice to see you reading here. Feel free to post a comment whenever you see something that bothers you, or you have a question.

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    4. I am sorry John first daughter stated her dad could never do this , the man also lost his first daughter and grief books in his house - why anyone would think he has a motive is ridiculous .... Why would he be stupid enough to write a letter on his own pad with their own pen and make naf immature references to movies that he wouldn't likely to have seen and remembered these naf lines ..... Please this house was open house these people had grief and cancer they were vulnerab

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    5. I think prior to Christmas maybe closer to Thanksgiving.. Burke told mom he saw dad liking jonbennet more than he's ever liked him.. Love or touching same thing here...... I think maybe patsy had been on a lookout for this and possibly saw it point blank before her very eyes.. I'm not sure if this was seen before Christmas or not.. but I think Burke alerted mom... mom eventually caught dad.. And this affluent family decided to try to stick together....

      Maybe this all happened prior to Christmas... Some how Burke found out and in some way unintentionally but also intentionally.. Some how..... Maybe this.. Or that
      This is first....Christmas and the presents and amount of pictures took etc.... Maybe Burke was jealous of this extra love ... Which he thought came in gifts instead of the sex stuff he saw....... maybe he thought it was love instead of abuse. jonbennet was getting it....not Burke...

      Maybe he did the stun gun... told mom ...she won't wake up.... mom shook jean enough to make her head ricochet off something.. Mom told dad

      dad strangled her...... Mom and dad set up the crime scene.. Including note... Baseball bat and books in Danish cause they were bought In cash and in-traceable......Now...
      This falls apart....cause this would be a real elaborate pretty meditated thing and the problem with proving this is...this is all so frantic almost clown staging.. But seems just enough to cover up the dad......and the dad was so good at shielding the boy...... The boy who stun gunned her sister so she wouldn't have to go through what dad did to her........ Or the boy with the stun gun who wanted dad to love him like jonbennet...

      And the ex pageant child turned mom realizing dad liked daughter more..... And the mom silently thinking about what to do about this.. And relying on Burke for information

      Who dog ears the dictionary to incest??????????
      This was done by Burke or police and no one else obvious... Burke could have bent the page in the dictionary to point to incest.....not patsy not John... Maybe a lame young dumb thinking they are funny dick cop would do that but that's it.... Burke or police
      This is that here... The shortest distance to a point is a single line... John... Lockheed Martin subsidiary... He named a single employee to the police for suspect... His smirk on every interview tries to show he's a cordial good man... That smirk is.... you don't know ....since I'm still alive I'll say this stuff... MIB Lockheed.. All these things previous about the parent staging this for whatever reasons once you take in John's job and the

      118,000 bonus deffered from unknown year
      ransom note
      Patsy on sedatives during CNN interview........

      This holds water cause if my daughter was killed by the unknown known government and my husband at Lockheed... Yeah I'd need to be sedated for a while and still be expected to perfor

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    6. Just let the mind wonder.... Not wander. The older daughter killed in-car crash four years prior... Think on that

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  2. I hope no one minds me jumping in re; the scream.

    It's questionable whether or not Melody Stanton actually heard a scream. She initially didn't report it, then told a neighbor, who tipped the cops. The cops interviewed Stanton and she claimed to have heard it, then said it might have been "negative energy" then was uncertain about the date when she heard the scream.
    Even if she is sincere in thinking she heard a scream the defense (if the case came to trial) would demolish her credibility as a witness.

    But let's assume, just for the sake of discussion, that she heard a scream that fateful night.

    It's often pointed out that if Melody Stanton heard it, then "The Ramseys" should have heard it as well. What often seems to go unnoticed is that Melody Stanton's husband sharing the same bed (presumably) and therefore in almost exactly the same location, did not hear it. Melody woke him when she heard the scream. He heard a "metal scraping on concrete" sound, but not the scream.

    So, the simple explanation for why one, two, or all three remaining Ramseys did not hear the scream is the same explanation for why Mr. Stanton didn't hear it. Some people are heavy sleepers. Melody heard it, her husband laying next to her didn't. JR may have heard it while PR asleep in bed did not. There is nothing particularly "fishy" about not hearing the scream, unless one thinks Mr. Stanton was in on the cover up as well.

    The scream is a good example of something that doesn't really amount to evidence as we can't be sure it actually happened, or that it wasn't simply an alley cat. Doc wisely encourages us not to be lead to conclusions based on this sort of "evidence".

    -CH

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    1. Great explanation about the "scream", CH. I think that reasoning holds true in many other cases as well. The case against Oscar Pistorius comes to mind. Different people hear different things, or nothing at all. Similarly, it explains why eye witnesses to the same event often report seeing completely different things.

      The best evidence in this case lies in the house . . . not outside it.

      bb

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    2. Mansions have front back side yards trees.... I'm in an apt there's a baby next door never heard it

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    3. This is all so exciting.. And I feel like a crappy ooogler. This Ramsey story I remember hearing about and now looking into cause there's this new TV stuff... Yes I have a poster board and post it notes a mind map of possibilities and ohhhhhhh it takes no effort to be interested in this.... My wheels are turning

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  3. I was re-reading one of your Burke posts, and the main problem with the BDI theory and Ramsey cover-up, imo, is that, if they really wanted to "help" their son, wouldn't they have wanted him to receive mental health care? Burke hurting his sister is in fact the kind of situation were their wealth would've helped them. With their lawyers they could've kept Burke out of juvenile detention very easily and set up for him to go to an upscale children's hospice, which is what any rational parent in that situation would want.

    I've been a fan of your blog for sometime, Doc. I know you like to deal with facts but I do have one question regarding your theory as to why John chose that night to murder JB. Wouldn't her "telling" have always been in the realm of possibility? He knew she was a human being who could speak, right?

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    1. As far as Burke is concerned, yes, if Burke had attacked and killed JonBenet, the last thing they'd have decided to do was cover it up by staging an elaborate kidnap cum pedophile assault scenario, complete with digital penetration of their daughter's vagina, strangulation with a "garotte" and a 2 1/2 page "ransom" note, topping it off with a call to the police that effectively counteracted their phoney kidnap staging. To me that scenario seems well beyond absurd.

      I would think the first thing they'd do is call a lawyer, who would have informed them that Burke was too young to be prosecuted. Then, after tanning his hide, they would most likely have arranged for him to get some help -- after calling 911 to report what had happened. The Ramseys were not drugged out meth fiends, but reasonably sane people who would certainly have known better than to cover up what could have been reported as an accident with an over the top psycho assault.

      The problem is that there are some so fixated on Burke that they are willing to accept the most absurd and unlikely possibilities, simply because, hey, sibling rivalry is a great motive and no one else had any motive at all. That seems to be Kolar's take and in my view it's a huge mistake. Meanwhile, the oldest motive in the world, incest, and the fear of being exposed as some sort of monster, is sitting right there staring us all in the face.

      And yes, it was always possible she could have "told" on him at any time. But that fact hasn't discouraged countless "loving fathers" who, as we well know, continued molesting their daughters for many years and in many cases without ever being exposed, at least until after their death. It looks to me as though John had probably intimidated JBR into keeping quiet, perhaps convincing her that if she told on him he'd be sent to jail. After all, she probably truly loved her father and never fully understood the meaning of what he'd been doing to her. As I see it, something unusual must have taken place that night to make her decide that she could no longer keep their secret a secret. We'll probably never know what that was, but if John felt convinced she was about to expose him then that would certainly have been a motive for murder.

      Do we have proof of that? No. But, as Sherlock Holmes famously said, "when you have ruled out every other possibility, then whatever remains, no matter how unlikely it might seem . . . "


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    2. Exactly. As you point out, they would want badly needed psychiatric help for BR. BR doesn't get that help with a coverup.

      If BR did it, a call to a lawyer would have been made. Then a call to the police. Then a call to a "shrink".

      A coverup is only necessary if someone is facing prison, and BR wasn't.

      BDI is the sucker's solution to the case.

      CH

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  4. I wanted to share a couple of thoughts I keep returning to. I would love to generate some critical thinking ideas, and I would love to consider and discuss anything you guys may have to contribute.

    I've been thinking of any possibly overlooked information, insight, or evidence left uncovered in a couple of key areas: J.R. had a very delicate situation on his hands. He was balancing two families on the morning of the 26th. He had two schedules. Lets look at the plans, actions, behaviors and decisions being made in the days prior. We have a family deciding three days prior to Christmas, to move the location of Christmas. There is documentation of Mrs. R calling Charlevoix, MI three days before Christmas to find and coordinate people and businesses to go to their summer home and decorate it for Christmas for her, at the last minute. We have JR finding "cheap" plane tickets from Atlanta to Minneapolis to "rendezvous" with his adult children from a previous marriage. We have his oldest living daughter bringing her boyfriend to meet the family for the very first time. Does anyone know why the plans were changed, a mere three days before Christmas? Does anyone know if it has been cited anywhere, if JR was having any difficulty with his oldest living daughter entering a serious, adult relationship? PR wrote in Death of Innocence that she thought, upon awakening on Dec 26th, that she better put her makeup on for Melinda's new boyfriend. She wanted to impress him and make a good first impression. She even bought gifts for him, since he was going to be in attendance for their Christmas. She showed thoughtfulness and consideration. But what about JR? How did he handle it? Could he have viewed this boyfriend and Melinda's journey into a serious relationship and adulthood as a perceived threat? How utterly traumatizing and dramatic and dysfunctional was his first Christmas with the Ramsey's??

    -H

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    1. Thanks for posting these interesting ideas and possibilities. It's hard for me to respond because this sort of thing isn't really my cup of tea. I think there are simply too many variables and too many uncertainties for such possibilities to help us very much in understanding the case. I know some people feel Patsy was under a lot of pressure due to these circumstance, but her being under pressure doesn't really tell us anything at all regarding guilt or innocence. Same with John. Which is why I much prefer sticking with the facts of the case as opposed to speculations regarding the psychology of the various players.

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  5. Hi DocG,

    I have studied your blog for several days now - I originally read some of your posts a year or so ago - and feel about 90% sure now that you're correct in stating John is the perpetrator. But I was quite convinced by Kolar's book, having just recently reread it.

    Anyhow, I have a couple of questions regarding John's involvement which I haven't read yet on this blog:

    1) Why were there misspelled words in the ransom note? Were these deliberately misspelled by John, and why? What would be the purpose (if there was one?) To make it appear that it really was written by a foreigner?

    2) Was there ever any mention by LE or Ramsey friends that John seemed tired or haggard-looking that morning? Though he said he took a melatonin tablet the night before, if he had been the perpetrator, he must have been up most of the night committing the crime, writing the ransom note and planning his next moves? (I think it's estimated somewhere that JonBenet died around 1:00 a.m. on the 26th?)

    Thanks,
    Bug

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    1. Imo opinion Kolar's book is great until we reach the point where he starts focusing on Burke. I just don't see Burke as having any direct involvement in this case. The fact that he had some emotional problems and also possibly good reason to be jealous of his sister has no real bearing on the case itself, for reasons I've discussed several times on this blog. The most likely person by far to have had an ongoing incestuous sexual relationship with JonBenet was her father, NOT her 9 year old brother. Kolar has all the evidence but refuses to accept that John even might possibly be guilty for reasons he never makes clear.

      As for the misspelled words, it seems to me that if John wanted to give the impression the "kidnapper" was a poor speller, he'd have included many more spelling mistakes than just those two. The two mistakes in the note are common mistakes and John probably made them inadvertently. I have a Ph. D. and I find myself making such errors fairly often. Thank God for spell check.

      One might expect that John would have been pretty wiped out if he'd stayed up all night killing his daughter and writing that note. But adrenalin, plus the possibility of spending the rest of one's life in jail, can do wonders for someone's energy level, I'd imagine.

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    2. Something struck me as odd in the Ramsey's book. PR states she awoke to Johns shower running and it was still dark outside, then she figured that she must start to get up as well, she thought, "My shower is still broken, oh well don't need one today." ODD that John was up and showering well before his alarm went off. Patsy's portion of the book of course doesn't say she was surprised he was up, but clearly she was surprised. She also said, "I am usually the first one up, and the first one to go down stairs."

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  6. I didn't get Kolar's book, having heard enough about it on WS to know I didn't need to bother. That there was no intruder is something everyone who can think straight realized sometime early in 1997 (or late '96), so while his description of the intruder scenario may be amusing it gives us no new info. That "The Ramseys" would implicate themselves in murder and risk prison (or even possibly execution) to "save" BR (or save the family honor, etc. etc.) is a theory for fools. I'm glad I didn't spend any money on the book.

    I tend to agree about the misspellings, they are common. If he wanted to make it appear that someone with little education had written the RN he would not have spelled attache correctly, including the little accent mark (whatever it's called).

    CH

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  7. Once I got to the part of the Kolar's book where I finally realized who he was pointing the finger at, I could hardly even finish the book. What a let down! I felt certain he was going to unveil some amazing evidence which would incriminate JR, but when I realized he was leading to Burke, I said, "REALLY??" I admit there was a time when I actually did feel strongly that Burke did it, but I just hadn't thought it through. Now, I absolutely do not believe the Ramseys would have gone to such elaborate staging to cover for their son. It is unbelievable to think they would do all those things to save their son ... a son who, don't forget, just took their daughter's life. Cover for him? Not likely.

    bb

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    1. Kolar's thinking is understandable when we realize that John very quickly became the "teflon suspect." Once he was "ruled out," he became invincible. Kolar finds a great many reasons to suspect him, but fails to put two and two together because he's convinced, like so many others, that John couldn't possibly have killed his daughter -- probably because he can't imagine why Patsy would have written the "ransom note" to cover for him. I can't imagine that either. Which is one of many reasons it seems clear to me that JOHN wrote it -- in spite of what "the experts" decided.

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  8. Thank you for your response, DocG. I appreciate your politeness towards me. I do hesitate to post my "thoughts," because I understand this blog is dedicated to the facts. There is a fine line between generating ideas and generating confusion.

    Do you know, or can you point me to some reading material where I can find the answers, who made the decision to break the pattern of Christmas in Boulder, three days before Christmas? Who decided to have the "First family Christmas in Charlevoix" three days before Christmas, and what was the reason cited for the last minute changes in plans? Do we have any information on whether these sudden changes were meaningless to this case and coincidental?

    Has there been any determination made in your mind, about whether this homicide was premeditated or accidental? If we are to understand that PR called 911 on her own, without JR, than 911 was not part of the plan. Either way, we are left with the remaining fact, that John had two different families to keep under control. He was literally responsible for calculating and coordinating their schedules and locations that whole morning. Do we have any information on whether it was meaningless and coincidental that the "finding" of the body coincided almost perfectly, down to the minute, with the arrival of the taxi cab on their street, carrying JAR, MR, and SL?

    Three facts that we can cite: This was going to be the family's first Christmas in Charlevoix. This was going to be the family's first time meeting Melinda's boyfriend. This ended up being the family's first Christmas with a deceased child.

    -H

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    1. The questions you're asking are the sort of questions an investigative reporter might ask when interviewing members of the family and friends. As far as I know there is nothing in the currently available literature that deals with such matters. So I can't help you.

      As far as premeditation is concerned, I've considered that possibility and, although it seems unlikely I don't think it can be completely ruled out.

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    2. I don't know whose idea it was to move Christmas, but the Ramsey's say in their book that it was going to be too much trouble to pack up all the many, many Christmas gifts for the kids, so this meeting up with the older kids was going to be an After Christmas Celebration. Patsy had a few more gifts for her kids as well as a few for Johns kids. (This may have prompted Jonbenet telling her friends mom, that she would receive a special visit from Santa AFTER Christmas.) I don't understand why they didn't invite the older kids to celebrate in Boulder with the family. At any rate, they discussed moving Christmas to Michigan, but decided, it was too much trouble to lug the presents there, then lug them home again.

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    3. He already had a deceased daughter can't imagine why he would want another ?

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  9. @H

    I can't answer your questions with definite answers, and as Doc suggested it doesn't seem there is anything in the lit. that tells us.

    May I offer some thoughts that might help?

    If I understand where you are going, it's basically this - the plans changed rather suddenly, and maybe this change of vacation plan was part of the murderer's overall plan.

    This is how I would look at it -

    Any vacation plans, whether altered or not, would have to be cancelled because JBR is going to be "missing".

    I see no reason that it would help to have the older kids, Melisa (plus her fiance) and JAR flying to MN then to CO. Melisa and JAR were planning to remain in GA through Christmas. IOWs they are already pretty far away with no plans for sudden return to CO. Why bring them to CO, as part of a murder plan?

    Some have speculated that the body was to be dropped from the plane, but I think that's highly unlikely. First everyone in the family would know what's going on, and secondly the pilot would also know. The pilot either has to be bribed, or murdered.

    To me it's just rich people exercising their privileges. They have a private plane. They have a vacation home. On a whim they can decide to fly to MI for a holiday meet-up.

    I live in MI and I can tell you that many here would rather be somewhere warm for Christmas. OTOH, Charlevoix in the winter has to be beautiful in a wintery-Christmasy sort of way.

    Bottom line for me is that the changed vacation plans don't seem to help the murderer get away with it, so they probably have nothing to do with the murder.

    CH

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  10. Thank you, CH. I understand and agree with everything you said.

    I didn't want to elaborate, because I didn't want it to lead into too much of my own opinion or speculation, so I left most of it in question form. I would do much better with information, first, before gathering and forming a complete thought.

    If I am to sort of explain myself, I think I was looking at it more from: go back to step one. I am just looking at anything, any changes, anything out of the ordinary, anything that stands out. Obviously, the last minute vacation changes and choice of flight plans seemed worth another look, to me. I do absolutely agree with you, why bring them to CO? And that's where I wanted to take a harder look. Bringing the older children and Melinda's boyfriend to Colorado was not the plan. PR changed everything when she called 911 at 5:52 a.m., which was not in the plan. After a few hours, a new plan was activated when JR called the airport in Minneapolis to reroute them back to Colorado. (With a killer on the loose in Colorado.) So, we do know that JR was aware of their arrival and estimated time of arrival to the house. I felt that the time John "found" the body, almost perfectly coinciding with the time the kids would be arriving at the house (to possibly spare them or keep them from going in the house) deserved another look, too. I appreciate your input! I am looking to gather more information, before I gather my thoughts. lol :)

    Thanks!

    -H

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  11. This is just my opinion, but looking at Christmas plans being changed days before Christmas isnt related to the murder. The staged window scene along with the body and RN both being in the house make me believe the crime and attempted cover up both happened that night.
    Did they ever look to see if JR was packed and ready to go for the trip the next day? Ala "A Few Good Men" where William Santiago wasn't packed for his supposed departure from the base, I wonder if JR wasn't packed because he knew they weren't going anywhere.

    -J

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    1. Assuming the murder was premeditated, I feel sure John would have been packed along with everyone else. Why leave such an obvious clue behind? If he had not been packed, that would have looked really suspicious and we would have heard about it.

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    2. Assuming the sexual molestation had been going on for sometime before JB was murdered, then it makes us wonder what about that night was different, causing JR to snap viciously. Thinking about their sudden changed plans does make me think there is a connection of some kind. Which leads me to Doc's once stated theory that JB told JR that she was going to expose him to her older sister, who they were NOW going to go visit. Makes sense to me.

      bb

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  12. How do you explain the train tracks abrasions on Jonbenet? Why would John use them? Wouldn't it be more likely that Burke, after hitting her with a golf club and rendering her unconscious, have picked up a toy train track and tried jabbing it into her in order to try to wake her up? When that didn't work, he then went to get his parents, who kept him away from her and then planned what to do with the situation. I read somewhere that the fake kidnapping was done for Burke, so that he wouldn't feel responsible for killing his sister. Instead he would believe that someone else came into the house while they were sleeping and did harm to Jonbenet. This was the Ramseys cover-up to protect Burke's mind going into the future.

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    1. The significance of the train tracks, as I see it, is that they demonstrate clearly that a stun gun is NOT the only way to explain those markings on JBR's body. That doesn't mean the marking were necessarily made by those train tracks, only that another explanation than a stun gun is possible. Also, just because the tracks belonged to Burke tells us nothing about his involvement, as they could have been used by anyone with access to the basement.

      My best guess is that JonBenet's body could have slammed very heavily onto the floor after she'd been struck on the head, and that her bruises could have been caused by objects lying on that (very messy) basement floor. It's also possible that there was a struggle before she was struck on the head and she could have been rolling around on the floor as she was being attacked.

      But arguments on the basis of simple association, such as Patsy's pad somehow suggesting Patsy wrote the note, or Patsy's paintbrush suggesting she constructed the "garotte," or Burke's train tracks suggesting he's the one who attacked her, strike me as an unconvincing form of reasoning, as these objects were there in the house for anyone to use.

      The notion that Burke could have somehow been brainwashed into forgetting he killed JonBenet strikes me as truly bizarre. Also a good example of the lengths people will go to in order to explain away evidence that doesn't fit their theory. The kidnap staging clearly had one purpose and that was to point away from the fact that JBR had been attacked by someone already in the house that night.

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    2. Kolar seems to believe that the train tracks were the object that caused the abrasions. The wrapping paper on the gifts in the "wine cellar" was torn, suggesting kids could've been snooping around in there. Kola¨'s book also gives info about Burke's strange behavior while interviewed by a social worker. Burke also had morbid conversations with a friend during the time of the funeral or just before. Burke never showed any fear for safety after knowing that his sister was killed and by how he is described in Kolar's book, Burke lacks in sympathy or empathy. He was also taken away so quickly on Dec.26th by Fleet White. Wouldn't parents who just found out their daughter was murdered not want to lose sight of their only other child? They sent him off to Fleet's house so quickly - shows guilt on their parts to me.

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    3. We really don't know much about Burke's state of mind after the murder or whether or not he expressed signs of fearfulness. What we do know suggests that he could have had Asperger's syndrome, which would explain his lack of affect and some of the strange things he's reported to have said and done. Also it's very hard to understand why the Ramseys would have let Burke go off with the White's if they knew he'd just killed his sister -- and might spill the beans. I just don't see any actual signs of his guilt, though he clearly had some psychological problems.

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    4. To me the fact that BR was allowed to go off with the Whites strongly suggests his non-involvement with the murder. He might indeed spill the beans. He might let slip some important detail. He might mention something only the killer could know. "The Ramseys" would not have let him go if there was a risk of him saying something.

      There really is no good reason for JR/PR to keep BR with them during the time they are waiting for a ransom call that will never come. As far as anyone other than the murderer knows, it's a kidnapping case. The kidnapper is gone, and as far as the innocent people know, JBR is gone too. Not much likelihood of the kidnapper coming back for BR. The Whites would keep close watch on him. Sending him off to the Whites makes a good deal of sense.

      CH

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    5. As a mother, if I thought my daughter was kidnapped, there is NO WAY I would let my other child out of my sight for ONE SECOND. The removal of Burke from the house suggests to me that JR knew soon a body would be found, so he sent his son to play at Fleets house, so he wouldn't experience the horrible scene to come. This proves JR knew JB was dead and would soon be discovered.

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    6. Keeping in mind that the Ramseys wouldn't think that JB actually WAS kidnapped, I can totally see getting BR out if that house asap. I had a daughter die young and suddenly at home, and her 3 sisters were in the house at the time. Because of the nature of her death, and the ages of her sisters, the kids were all unaware of what was going on, as the house began to fill with emergency/rescue personnel. The FIRST call I made, after 911, as to family friends, to get my kids out of there. This was happening in their home. I did not want them to remember their sister that way, or be traumatized to live in their own home. It's easy to say what we would definitely do or not do, if it were us... but removing BR, knowing JB is deceased not missing, is one of the few points of this mystery that made perfect sense to me.

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  13. And as far as the sexual abuse, it was noted that it was "digital" Couldn't then Burke have played with Jonbenet on many previous occasions, touching her with his fingers, putting them there and her letting him do it as a game of some sort. Would John put his fingers in his daughter's crotch, sure. But wouldn't Burke just as likely have had time with her considering his mind, the fact that he was a horny young boy who saw his younger sister dressed up in ways that brought out excitement in the opposite gender, especially a young boy like Burke?

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    1. Typical nine year old boys have no interest of any kind in girls, least of all sexual interest. And if Burke had been atypical, as Kolar so strongly suggests, that would certainly have been known to the family and also known to the investigators. And would have been a huge red flag. Kolar had access to all the evidence and he never refers to anything like that. So while Kolar managed to dig up all sorts of research suggesting that a nine year old could have been sexually active, he clearly found nothing of that sort that he could link specifically to Burke.

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    2. Also, why the "island of privacy" regarding Burke's medical records and why was Jonbenet at the pediatrician's office over 30 times in a very short amount of time? Patsy must have known something wasn't right with Jonbenet and I bet Dr. Boeuf was keeping their family secrets secret, as well. Why would he show up on Dec. 26th when all hell broke lose? If my child goes missing, is kidnapped, I would never think of calling my pediatrician to come to the house. Why would he need to be there?

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    3. As I mentioned, Burke may have had Aspergers, in which case his parents might not have wanted his medical records known. As far as Dr. Boeuf is concerned, as I recall he was not one of the first group invited to the Ramsey home, but arrived later, basically to administer to Patsy, who was by all descriptions a basket case.

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    4. I also thought that Burke looks like he may have Asbergers.After reading Kolar's book that's what you come out thinking about Burke. But Dr. Boeuf is a pediatrician who logically would tend to a child, not an adult.

      On another note, John's sister removed items from the house. Why wasn't the police notified about the removal of a gold bag. I too am convinced that there was something there, most likely the club used in striking Jonbenet, that needed to be removed as far as John saw it. I wonder if the golf club wasn't used to hit her over the head and the flash light used later in hiding the body. That's why the flashlight had no fingerprints. John had to remove them all, inside and out, so that not to show that it was used by any of the family members. After all, it was around midnight and they wouldn't have wanted all the neighbors to see lots of lights being turned on all over the house.

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    5. I meant to write golf bag :o)

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  14. I posted above about JR's bags being packed and I guess what is confusing is the family gets home late from a party, and supposedly everybody goes to bed. Didnt JR state that he took a sleeping pill to make sure that he slept thru the night. Since they had an early flight the next day, was the car packed and ready to go? Were the kids bags all packed? I know that when my family went on vacations when we were younger, my parents would stay up all night packing to make sure we were ready to go the next morning.
    I dont believe there was any premeditation in this case, but getting home past 9PM with a flight less than 12 hours away, shouldnt they family have been ready to go right when they wake up?

    -J

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  15. I am convinced JR killed JB. However, I believe in leaving no stones unturned. After reading Kolar's book and some of the comments here, Burke is probably the ONLY other person I have ever remotely looked at suspiciously. But there are a couple of comments I'd like to make in response to comments above.

    First of all, just because JB was digitally penetrated doesn't mean Burke did it. JR could certainly have done that also. He may have been just as aroused doing that and may have felt that intercourse would leave more obvious signs of abuse to JB's vagina, not to mention the physical evidence he would leave behind. It's sick and perverted to think of any father sexually molesting his own daughter, but some men might actually think touching and feeling with their fingers is less of a crime and easier to pull off than actual penile penetration.

    As to Burke being whisked away that morning by the Whites, I used to find that suspicious until Doc's comment above,

    " . . . it's very hard to understand why the Ramseys would have let Burke go off with the White's if they knew he'd just killed his sister -- and might spill the beans."

    Excellent point! IF the Ramseys actually went to such elaborate lengths to cover for Burke (including the horrific garroting of their daughter), certainly they would want him around them that morning to make sure he kept quiet and to monitor any questions asked of him.

    Burke may have had some odd behavior after the murder of his sister, and maybe that's because of possible Aspergers, but I actually believe he was just an odd nine-year old who had a lot to deal with after this happened. What nine-year old has a script on how to act in circumstances like this? As to odd behavior before the murder, from what I've read (including points Kolar made), I'm not convinced it's that odd after all. I've seen a lot of nine-year old boys who act odd from time to time. They're in that awkward period of growing up between the pre-school years and the teenage years. And nothing more has ever happened with Burke. As far I as know, he's grown up to be a normal young man.

    More attention should be paid to JR's odd behavior, both that morning and before the murder. That is the biggest mystery to me. I realize he was ruled out, but there HAD to be other people who suspected him regardless. This is a cold case now, and certainly investigators should realize that everything, every person, has to be looked at again, with fresh eyes. It strikes me that there would be quite a bit to look at regarding JR ---- what he did on his business trips away from home, samples of his writing style, both business and pleasure, his behavior with both his former wife and Patsy, his behavior around JB, etc. I feel like we just don't know much about JR and that is a huge mistake.

    bb

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  16. Good point about Burke possibly "spilling the beans" if he had killed Jonbenet, and thus would've been better kept by his parents' side. That would be true if Burke KNEW he killed his sister. But, what if he fought with her, as many kids do, hit her over the head with the gold club, rendering her unconscious, seeing she wasn't waking up after being poked with another toy, then getting help. His parents could've told him everything is ok and to go to his room. He might've been told she was fine. So as far as Burke knew, Jonbenet was going to be ok. The staging was done by the parents after they knew Jonbenet wasn't going to wake up, to create a different cause of death, by an intruder, so that Burke would wake up to a tragedy not of his making. They told Burke his sister was kidnapped, and he was whisked away to the Whites' house. He. all along, believing Jonbenet was abducted, therefore alive. He was taken, after all, before the official discovery of the body. So as far as he was aware, his sister was missing, and that was not of his doing. His fight with her the night before causing her death would not have been something he would link together.
    Also, Dr. Bernhard interviewed Burke and found him to show no signs of being scared or concerned over an intruder, no tears when speaking of his sister's death, showed little emotion to family connection, claimed he had secrets he couldn't reveal or else they wouldn't be secrets anymore, drew a family portrait without Jonbenet, played a game of "Guess Who" and made a comment like "oops, you're not dead yet," referring to a figure in the game, but DID SHOW anxiety when asked questions of sexual nature.
    This may indicate that Burke did in fact play with Jonbenet in a sexual manner.
    Why did Dr. Beuf, the pediatrician, intervene and refuse a second interview with Burke to be done? Why did Patsy call Dr. Beuf 3 times on the evening of Dec. 17th? Why did the doctor see Jonbenet 33 times in 3 years and was most of it over vaginitis and bedwetting?

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  17. Has anyone ever considered that perhaps Burke was interfered with sexually as well? Wasn't he a bed-wetter for an extended period of time just as JB was? Perhaps that's why he exhibited anxiety when asked questions of a sexual nature?

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    1. (from: Kikigirl-I've posted above a couple of times) Yes, perhaps there was sexual abuse of both kids in that household. Perhaps Kolar is right about Burke exhibiting traits of kids diagnosed with "Sexual Behavior Problems," But where did Burke's SBP stem from? Had to have been some sort of parental involvement. Those parents were possibly not well equipped to raise emotionally healthy, well-adjusted kids.

      But it's odd that Burke did not show any fright or even concern for the safety of his "kidnapped" sister. (on Dec. 26th and onward)
      He showed excitement when talking about the upcoming trip to Charlevoix, but no emotion for the situation at hand, when questioned by Detective Patterson.
      Dr. Bernhard believed that Burke's behavior was indicative of a "dysfunctional environment." No surprise there.
      Susan Stine said that her son, Doug talked with Burke on Dec. 28 and Burke talked about "manual strangulation" possibly being involved in Jonbenet's death. Burke's tone was very impersonal, casual, matter-of-fact type, which seems odd considering this was his sister who died 2 days ago.
      Dr. Bernhard asked Burke if he knew what had happened to his sister and he said HE DID and he asked his father where he found the girl's body. To which Burke continued that his father told him she was in the basement.

      So we know Burke has a lack of emotion, is impersonal, quiet, the concept of death doesn't seem to move him much, claims he knows more than he is willing to tell. But does that all point to him being the one who struck Jonbenet on the head, causing the spiral of events, the cover up, that followed? Or is John the molester and Burke knew of John's deeds and knew best to keep quiet? Personally, whenever I see John speak publically, his mannerisms, facial expressions and general appearance gives me reason to believe that he was involved in his daughter's death. He looks like a snake to me.

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    2. I am assuming most of the people commenting here have seen the picture of the garrote around JB's neck. It is tight. I just cannot believe for one minute that the Ramseys, if innocent and covering for Burke, would construct such a complex device and then tighten it around her neck like that. The ONLY person I can see doing that is the person who had already killed her --- someone who had smashed her skull so hard it left a 8 1/2-inch crack from one end to the other. And I certainly don't think Burke was strong enough to hit JB with such incredible force. Burke is innocent of this crime. He may very well have been an odd duck and perhaps he did witness something, either before or after JB's death, but he didn't kill her. He's "ruled out", in my opinion, and for better reasons than John was ruled out for.

      bb

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  18. (kikigirl) But couldn't a nine, almost ten year old swing a golf club hard enough to cause such a fracture? It's a fact that Burke has hit his sister with a golf club once before. If the crime happened in the basement, there was a gold bag there. A golf club is bottom heavy, therefore it could leave quite an impact even if used by a boy.

    The clubs were in the basement, the loose train tracks as well, the opened presents in the "wine room," it appears that the kids could have gone down there after stopping by the kitchen and having pineapple.

    The garrote for sure is John's doing. It's just hard to believe that the parents would be down there doing all of this. Patsy's coat fibers in the paintbrush set and on the duck tape,

    The police never recovered the missing paint brush end and that gold bag went missing. It's possible that crime evidence was taken out in that bag.

    Jonbenet's bed smelled like urine. They came home around 9, the crime happened around or before 12. Could she have actually slept in that bed and wet it in that short amount of time? Or was it from the night before, and the sheets were not changed on the morning of the 25th. The maid says those were not the sheets she put on before she left, so Jonbenet definitely wet her bed between the 23rd and 24th. Burke's dirty pijama bottoms were found in her room too, along with a box of chocolates smeared with feces. Something really wrong was happening to and between those kids in that household.

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    1. A blow from a golf club would almost certainly have drawn blood from the scalp. Much more likely to have been the Maglite, with its hard rubber head. We've all seen photos of Burke from that time. Looks pretty frail to me.

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    2. The feces in JBs room is disturbing, and Burkes pajamas with feces in them were found in JBs room, along with a box of chocolates smeared with feces. Both children wet their beds and had toileting problems. The Paughs had bought books for the Ramsey's called ,"Why Johnny doesn't know right from wrong.", "Growing up too Fast" and "Children at Risk". Indeed something was TERRIBLY wrong in the Ramsey household. JR was gone a lot and imo PR was a lazy mom. Her house was a mess, her kids were free to do as they pleased, except JB at pageant time. She stated that they rarely washed their hands or bathed unless it was what Patsy called "The Pageant Scrub down"- When nails were trimmed, hair was washed and JB was cleaned head to toe, but this was rare, only at competition time. Patsy described her children; "Burke was a loner, and Johnny B was a flirt."

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  19. Was it ever determined whose feces it was?

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    1. Excellent question. Those who suspect Burke have assumed, based on NO evidence, that it must have been his. Could just as easily have been JonBenet's.

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    2. (kikigirl) I think the golf club could've been used as the object that hit her head. The flashlight was then later used to do the staging, running around the house, without turning on lights past midnight, in order not to alert any neighbors. That would explain the flashlight being out, and cleaned after the staging, but with all of the emotion and commotion, not put back in the drawer.

      The golf bag from the basement was removed for a reason, therefore it is of significance. Burke, as a 9 year old, granted scrawny looking, could've swung a club at his sister, and in fact he did so at one point in the past.
      The first maid they had reported saying that at the time when Patsy was going through chemo, Burke smeared his feces all over the bathroom wall and the maid was told to clean it up. Shows Burke's frustration at something. So regarding the feces on the chocolate box, it could have very likely been Burke's doing. His pijama bottoms with feces in them, I don't know. Has it been tested, probably but maybe not made public. There is a lot of information in this case that hasn't been made public. Also the current maid reported saying she found a grapefruit sized poop in Jonbenet's bedsheets. Did Jonbenet poop in her own bed? Or did Burke put it there due to his dislike or resentment of his sister? He might have done things like this when they fought, as siblings do, in order to get back at her.

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    3. First of all, to my knowledge the golf bag was not removed. John apparently asked about it, that's all. Secondly, even if it had been removed, that would not have happened before the police had had a chance to carefully examine it and all the clubs as well. Nothing left that house without being examined first by the police I can assure you.

      Third, a blow that devastating from something as hard as a golf club would have left clear lacerations on the scalp and there would have been lots of bleeding from the scalp. And yet none was seen and in fact the head blow was discovered only during the autopsy.

      As far as Burke's feces is concerned, these incidents occurred while Patsy was undergoing chemotherapy -- it's understandable that Burke would have been upset. It's also understandable he'd have been upset if he had some awareness, either conscious or unconscious, that his sister and his father were intimate.

      Kolar suspects Burke for one simple reason: he can't bring himself to suspect John. John has become the teflon suspect, simply because he was "ruled out." Rule him back in and it's pretty obvious what happened and why.

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    4. The golf clubs were not a FULL set though, some were missing....

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  20. hi Doc, is it correct that fibres from the cord used were found on Jonbenet's bed?, also is it possible that there was no paintbrush end, and the items used were just available from the house.Otherwise the remainder of these items would need to be disposed of.
    While i have no thoughts of Patsy's involvement, crime scene photo's do show patsy's side of bed unslept in, perhaps nothing.
    And can you please tell me what LE is, i keep reading about thanks.

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    1. Yes, I believe such fibers were found on her bed. No idea what that might mean. Not sure what their inability to find the end of the paintbrush could mean. The basement was a mess so it could easily have gotten lost.

      John went AWOL on Det. Arndt for some time prior to the discovery of the body and he could easily have disposed of evidence during that period.

      Can you please post a link to the photos showing Patsy's side of the bed unslept in? I've never seen such photos and am definitely curious. Of course if there were any meaningful evidence indicating that Patsy's side of the bed was undisturbed, I feel sure the media would have picked up on it. Sounds to me like a rumor, maybe something from one of the tabloids.

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    2. Oh, and LE stands for Law Enforcement.

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    3. (kikigirl) Here is a photo of the Ramseys' bedroom. It looks like one side hasn't been slept in, in comparison to what the pillow looks like on the other side.
      http://www.acandyrose.com/047parentsbedroom.jpg

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    4. Thanks, kikigirl. I'd never seen that photo before. It does look as though one of the pillows was not disturbed, you're right. Was this ever mentioned by anyone involved in the investigation as evidence? Of course this particular photo doesn't really have enough detail. I'm wondering whether a closeup of the pillow was ever taken.

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    5. i wondered if maybe she made her side of the bed when she got up, strange as that may be. But unusual why she didn't pull the top cover back over ?

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    6. I'd need to get a closer look at that pillow. I feel sure they must have taken a closeup, but it's probably locked in a file drawer somewhere. What makes me doubt its significance is the fact that I've heard literally nothing about it in all these years. If the authorities saw it as meaningful evidence I feel sure we'd have heard about it by now.

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  21. (kikigirl) From Steve Thomas' book: Page 48: (where we get the golf bag issue)

    "That evening John went to Crist Mortuary to discuss funeral arrangements. In addition to the usual rites, transportation was needed for burial to Atlanta. Patsy awoke while he was gone and staggered from the bedroom to a couch, bearely able to speak, and told her sisters she needed some things from Fifteen Street. John was overhead to ask somebody quietly, "Did you get my golf bag?" When I learned of that statement, it seemed totally out of order. There had been two golf bags in the house, but he had not specified which one he wanted. Neither bag was collected by police."

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    1. Golf clubs are listed in the evidence inventory presented here: http://www.acandyrose.com/crimescene-inventory.htm

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  22. (kikigirl) 2001 April 3 - National Enquirer Interview with John and Patsy Ramsey:

    "When asked when Burke woke up, John said it was after Patsy discovered the ransom note shortly after 5:30 a.m. Then he quickly changed his answer to say Burke woke up after the 911 call. But then John changed his story again, calling The ENQUIRER as we went to press to say that Burke was awake BEFORE the 911 call. John told us. "Burke recalled his mother screaming, 'Where's my baby?' and me saying, 'Calm down, calm down, we need to call the police.'" But Patsy still insists: "When I made that phone call, Burke Ramsey was nowhere in the vicinity of the telephone."

    I wonder what mother, if innocent of any wrongdoing and completely shocked by the circumstances unfolding, comments using her son's full name, including his last name? Wouldn't she just say, "Burke was not in the vicinity of the phone." Speaking in familiar terms. By Patsy using Burke's full name, it makes her look like she is accentuating Burke as an element, a puzzle piece, that she doesn't want to appear involved, yet somehow he was. She knows this, but won't admit to it. His name is used by her as an element, a detail, that she refuses to be linked with the morning 911 call.

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    1. Sounds to me like John was especially eager for the police to believe that he told Patsy to make that call. So it was necessary for Burke to have been "awake after all," so he could report what he supposedly overheard.

      Bottom line: Patsy herself stated, in the A & E documentary, that the call was her idea. She said she told John she was going to call and he said "OK." That's NOT what Burke is supposed to have heard. Fact is, we have no reason to believe anything any of them said.

      As for Pasty using Burke's full name, that doesn't register with me. I don't see it as particularly unusual or meaningful. Certainly not a sign of guilt.

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    2. Patsy has an odd way of referring to her husband as John Ramsey too, not John, not my husband, but by his full name....

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  23. bb had a problem posting this comment to the blog, so I'm posting it for her:

    I also do not think much about Patsy referring to Burke by his full name. She also referred to John as "John Ramsey" during her interrogation by Tom Haney. Maybe it's a southern thing or maybe it's just because she was a socialite who felt the Ramsey name was important.

    On a side note, I just watched an interview of John Ramsey I had never seen before and when talking about losing his child he says, "that was the crushing blow." Interesting choice of words, John.

    bb

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    1. (kikigirl) You are right. A very telling choice of words. Maybe without realizing it, his subconscious mind is speaking up. If John hit his daughter over the head and did the staging later, why were Patsy's coat fibers in the duct tape? There were other Patsy clues as well, like her coat fibers in the box paint brushes were in. Patsy knew where the Swiss army knife was upstairs, according to the housekeeper. Remnants of the cord used for binding were found in Jonbenet's bed. How does that fit in with the tragedy that happened that night? Did John or Patsy use that cord on Jonbenet in her own bed and then carry her downstairs?

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  24. (kikigirl) Also, how does one explain the abrasions on Jonbenet's neck and lower back side? I see it as train track marks, like Kolar. They according to him match up perfectly. Unlike a stun gun that was close but not exact.
    If in fact train tracks were used at some point, then why? For what purpose, other than to wake up a passed out child? Why would patsy or John use toy tacks? Wouldn't Burke be more likely to use them on her?

    Could Burke have seen the after math of the hitting (John or Patsy's doing), seeing his sister lying on the ground lifeless and at one moment while the parents weren't near the body, could he have tried to jab her in order to see if she would wake up or at least show some signs of life?

    I just can't see how the parents would have caused those abrasions.

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  25. Some years ago when Kolar's book was fresh I looked up the track spacing of popular model RR gauges. As far as I know, the spacing between the marks on the body is 2.9cm. That does not correspond to any gauge of track. O gauge would be too wide, S too narrow. (And S is not all that popular. I think it mainly applies to old American Flyer train sets) Those would be the two closest, and neither is the correct spacing.

    An Air Taser gun of that time had a spacing of 3.4cm.

    So I'm not really sure that Kolar has this right. Of course it's possible I'm mistaken about the spacing of t he marks on the body. Generally I think Kolar is just fantasizing about the track being used. Does he give any numbers? Or does he just claim the spacing is a match for the track?

    A few other thoughts on track - If track were disconnected then there would be no complete circuit, thus no shock, if the train ran on AC. The marks would have to be made simply by contact in something akin to a stabbing motion.

    More typically, trains run on DC, which is why the transformer is used. The transformer steps down the voltage and changes it from AC to DC. This could produce only a very small shock - probably less than 24V. And, it would have to be the piece of track that the transformer is connected to.

    JMO, but I think Kolar is full of beans on this issue.

    Of course skin can be scrunched up or pinched so that the marks would be further apart after the skin is released. But I'm assuming that there is no way to determine the amount of "scrunching" so the marks must be measured with the skin in it's "normal" state.

    Can anyone second my failing memory and verify the spacing at 2.9cm? Does anyone know the gauge of Burke's RR set?

    CH

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  26. Good sleuthing, CH. As I see it, what's important about Kolar's "discovery" is not that he's uncovered the secret of the mysterious abrasions on JonBenet's body, but that he's demonstrated the possibility of an alternative hypothesis to the absurdity offered by Smit.

    There are any number of ways those marks could have gotten onto her body, especially if her attacker had roughed her up either prior to or shortly after the head blow.

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  27. http://gemart.8m.com/ramsey/stungun.html

    CH

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  28. http://www.thortrains.net/scale1.htm

    CH

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  29. Digging through old posts on WS I see the claim, seemingly made by Kolar, that Burke's train was "O" gauge. O gauge measures 31.8mm, or 3.18cm between the rails. The makrs on JBR's body are 2.9cm apart. The difference would be .28cm or slightly under 1/8 inch.

    Certainly measuring on a hard surface which does not flex, there would be no excuse for that large a difference between the marks and the RR gauge. On skin, which can flex, I guess I'd have to concede that Kolar could be right, ;if the skin was pinched up between the track rails. Let's be clear though, that the track is not an exact match. 3.18 cm for the track, 2.9 cm between the marks.

    Doc, I agree that the value of Kolar's theory wrt the track is that it offers an alternative to the stun gun theory (LS is off by .5cm, almost twice as far off as Kolar)

    CH

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  30. As I see it, Smit's stun gun is a classic example of a red herring. It's not worth refuting, so I have to say I feel sorry for whoever went to the trouble of putting that very thorough website together. Even if everything matched perfectly, that would NOT constitute evidence relevant to this crime. Same with the train tracks.

    I hate to sound so dogmatic on this issue but there is a larger issue at stake. The investigators of a crime such as this should never let members of the defense team (and that certainly included Smit) play these kind of games.

    Smit pulled that "stun gun" idea out of a hat and then went shopping for a real one that looked like a close enough match, so he could work some sort of magic with it.

    And if he couldn't find a stun gun that suited him then he could just as easily have found some plumber's tool or some carpenter's tool or some sex toy or some gizmo that might be found in an S&M supply store.

    Anything from outside the house, so he could "prove" it was introduced by his precious intruder. His effort was a joke.

    Kolar did well to point to those tracks because they are an example of something from inside the house that could (possibly) have produced the same marks. But realistically there were probably a great many things in that house that night that could have been responsible. It looks like her attacker roughed her up, so her body could have been tossed against any number of items, especially in the basement which was a royal mess.

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  31. I guess we're on the same page, yet seeing things slightly differently. Smit's stun gun theory was definitely a joke, and unfortunately it takes a lot of effort to debunk such a joke. It's worth refuting because the notion could be introduced at trial (had things gone that far) and would then need to be dealt with anyway. It also takes up endless hours of internet-sleuthing time, so needs to be debunked so we can move on. I'm glad someone took the time to do it. (It's not my website, just to be clear. I don't know who's it is) I agree Smit was making up anything he could dream up to enhance the IDI side of the case. He didn't care if there was a correct "fit" just so long as it was close and supported the boogeyman theory.

    My impression of Kolar is that he didn't come up with the train track idea specifically to debunk the stun gun theory, or to present an alternative, but rather, he simply believed he'd figured out something about the case. Unfortunately for him, the marks and tracks do not share the same spacing. Unfortunately for me, it took an hour or so of my life to find the gauge measurements of model RR track and the spacing of the marks on the body. I wouldn't say I've debunked the train track theory completely, but certainly there's great doubt about the theory given the spacing doesn't match. Kolar should, imo, have taken another hour out of his life to measure O gauge track, find the spacing of the marks and ask himself whether he had a reasonable explanation or not. Like Smit, he seems to feel close is good enough. He should have spent some time explaining the spacing discrepancy. (To be fair I'm placing a lot of confidence in the website that claims 2.9cm spacing. That site could be in error)

    In my prior comments I've left Kolar an out, recognizing that skin can be stretched or bunched up, so the spacing doesn't have to be perfect. I realize now that there is only one way 3.18cm tracks could make 2.9cm marks, and that's if the skin was stretched wider than normal. It would then return to it's "normal" state which would result in a smaller spacing. Pinching up the skin between the tracks would result in wider spacing after the skin returned to normal. It's relatively easy to pinch up some skin, somewhat more difficult to stretch it wider, which imo casts even more doubt about Kolar's theory.

    I agree neither the stun gun theory or RR track theory constitute any kind of proof, but they still come up repeatedly and lead people to wrong theories of the case (IDI/BDI). Unfortunately someone has to spend time debunking them.

    I agree completely that there are any number of ways she could have got those marks, and I'll add that she didn't have to get the simultaneously (though probably reasonably close in time) so it didn't have to be a "two pronged" item such as RR track or a stun gun.

    As for the investigators allowing Smit to play games, I don't see that there is much they can do about it, other than trying to ignore him. People can spin theories faster than those theories can be debunked.

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    1. Everything you say makes sense. Nevertheless, as I see it, what we have here in both instances is an effort to bend the evidence to fit a theory. Smit wants to see an intruder, so he comes up with a stun gun. Kolar wants to see Burke, so he comes up with toy train tracks.

      What Smit was doing is the sort of thing a defense lawyer would do when trying to defend someone in an open and shut case. You just come up with any alternative you can think of to suggest reasonable doubt. You don't have to actually prove it, just suggest it as a possibility.

      Thanks for demonstrating the unlikelihood of the train track theory, because Kolar used it (irresponsibly imo) to paint a picture of Burke torturing JonBenet with those tracks. Fits his thinking all too well. Kolar's thinking is better than Smit's, however, because at least he ties those abrasions to something actually found in the house, rather than something dreamed up in his mind, ala Smit.

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  32. Doc, do you have a relationship at all with the Websleuths site? Meaning, were you ever a member there and if so, what was your experience?

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  33. Interesting question. Yes, I participated at Websleuths on and off for several years. And when I debunked the intruder theory, just about everyone there was pleased. But when I defended Patsy Ramsey, most got really upset. And when I pointed out some glaring errors in the theory of one of their favorite posters, the thread I initiated disappeared and all my previous posts on all the other threads were removed. I took the hint and left.

    But Websleuths isn't the only forum where I had such problems and in some cases I was banned outright.

    My experiences on the Ramsey forums generally are discussed in the following blog post, which may amuse you:

    http://solvingjonbenet.blogspot.com/2012/07/why-i-am-so-popular-or-murder-on.html

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  34. Doc, I may have asked this before, but I've posted comments many times and I just can't recall.

    JR was ruled out as a suspect. And I'm not talking about the trace DNA that later ruled out all the family members. What was the basis of him being ruled out earlier on? I've researched this point many times and I just can't find anything about why he was ruled out or by whom. Was it just because of his handwriting?? If so, why wasn't be required to produce more writing samples, like Patsy was. Now I realize his money allowed him to hire his own investigators, but why then wouldn't Patsy also been protected? Why was he so quickly tossed to the side and she fed to the wolves? Do you suppose he secretly hoped she would be the prime suspect, so as keep the authorities' eyes off of him?

    bb

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    1. John was not ruled out as a suspect (or technically a "person of interest") until the "touch DNA" evidence emerged, in 2008, I believe, and both John and Patsy were "exonerated" by DA Mary Lacy.

      He was ruled out as writer of the note, however, and when I say on this blog or in my book that he was "ruled out" that's what I'm referring to. Both he and Patsy were "under the umbrella of suspicion" for many years -- and still are, in fact.

      He apparently supplied the handwriting "experts" with writing samples, but those samples have never been made public, nor has anything at all been reported regarding any other samples he may have been asked to provide. All the focus was on Patsy, and all the media attention was on Patsy, so we've seen many samples of her writing, but only one of John's -- and that one seems to have been just a stroke of luck.

      I don't think John deliberately tried to cast suspicion on Patsy, because it was important to him that the world believed JonBenet was killed by an intruder. By implicating Patsy he would also be implicating himself, since most people have assumed the two of them were "in it together."

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    2. Thanks for the explanation, Doc. It's really incredible to me that John was ruled out as the writer of the note, especially after viewing and reading about the comparisons you've made in your blog. You would think the various investigators on this case (those NOT hired by John) would have stumbled upon everything you did (and possibly more based on things we have not seen). When I look at the things they tie to Patsy and then look at the things you've tied to John, it's hard for me to believe that they focused more on Patsy than him. It's a real tragedy of justice that they dropped the ball on this, especially since I really doubt if they'll ever take a second look at John, at least while he is still alive. (He looks pretty old and weathered these days --- I think carrying this "burden" around all these years has taken it's toll on him.)

      And I think you're absolutely right about John not wanting to cast suspicion on Patsy either because, as you say, that would carry the risk that he could be implicated with her. So many people believe they were in it together. Now that I think about it, he has always tried very, very hard to convince everyone that there was an intruder that night. The only intruder I think was there that night was the "dark side" of John that no one knew existed, at least no one outside of that house.

      bb

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    3. You've summed it up very nicely, bb. Only a very aggressive and determined DA would be willing and able to bring a case against John in the light of his being "ruled out" by those "experts."

      If it were me, I'd call the whole lot of them onto the carpet, one at a time, and demand to know exactly what it was about John's handwriting that ruled him out so completely. And exactly what "scientific" methodology they were using that enabled them to rule out the person who was by far the most likely suspect from the start.

      By the way, I seriously doubt these people ever saw the example of John's writing that we've all seen. My guess is that he's ambidextrous and only gave them samples of his right handed script.

      Of course they were used to evaluating forged documents, not writing that had been deliberately disguised.

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  35. I just ordered the book "Who Killed Jon Benet Ramsey", by Charles Bosworth and Cyril H. Wecht. Not your typical summer read, I know, but one I've wanted to read for sometime now. What can you tell me about the authors of this book? My recollection (from you blog) is that Cyril Wecht is the medical examiner who contends Jon Benet WAS sexually abused prior to her murder. Am I correct about that? That seems to be a key element in this case because, if true, whoever was molesting JB before is the most likely person who killed her. I agree with you that John was the only mature male in that house leaving me to believe that he was the one molesting her and, eventually, silencing her forever.

    bb

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    1. The heart of the book is Wecht's evaluation of the coroner's report, which is included in full as an appendix. Since Wecht is widely regarded as an outstanding authority on forensic pathology and has consulted on probably thousands of cases all over the world, his take on the case is certainly authoritative.

      Spoiler alert:


      And in his opinion, there is no question but that JonBenet was sexually molested prior to the night of the attack. He feels sure John Ramsey was the molester and that John was the one who killed her -- although in his opinion this was an accident. You need to read the book to learn why.

      Oddly enough, though Wecht is convinced John is the one who killed her, he was also convinced (until he read my book) that Patsy wrote the note. Why? Because he knows some of the "experts" who ruled John out as writer of the note and has such great respect for them.

      After reading my book, he now says he doesn't know who wrote it. I haven't yet convinced him. But I did get him to budge just a bit. :-)

      By the way, imo Wecht is a true gentleman, highly dedicated to his work and to justice, and also very approachable and generous with his time.

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    2. Interesting. Especially about his opinion with regard to Patsy. I'm glad you were able to bring him around a bit regarding the author of the note. IMO, even if Patsy was aware of John's molestation of JB and even if she discovered him in the act and/or helped him cover it up, I don't believe she would have had the presence of mind to write that manifesto of a ransom note. Some might say we don't know for sure what her presence of mind was, but I say to that just listen to the 911 call made by her. You hear a mother who is frantic, confused and out of her mind with worry and panic over her missing daughter. If she had written that note, I don't believe she would sound so authentic. Not to mention that she would never have made that call in the first place, as you have said many, many times.

      Thanks for replying Doc.

      bb

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    3. Yeah, I do say that a lot, don't I? :-/

      Thanks bb.

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  36. It's interesting that Dr. Cyril Wecht's name should pop up now. I'm just about finished reading his book, "Who Killed JonBenet," and I have to say it's one of the best books I've read on the case so far. (I haven't read your book, Doc, but only because I've read every word on your blog -- comments included.) I actually learned some new things about the Ramseys in Dr. Wecht's book.

    He's very convincing in his assessment of JB's injuries. The body doesn't lie, and the fact that there was so little blood from her massive head wound leads me to agree with Dr. Wecht's conclusion of the order of events that night. In fact, your theory, Doc, and his dovetail quite nicely, though I know you believe there was some premeditation. Dr. Wecht has told me how she died, and you have told me how the cover up happened and why the ransom note was written.

    I think one of the most convincing things you've ever said, Doc, is that John made the ransom demand $118,000 because that was the amount of his bonus, thus making it almost "found" money to him, and an amount he wouldn't mind parting with if he actually did get to carry out his full plan. When I read that on your site it rang so true to me and seemed so logical, I was amazed no one had thought of it before.

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    1. Assuming John wrote the ransom note, I don't believe he asked for $118,000 because that was "found" money that he could easily part with. Let's not forget that he knew he was not actually going to part with ANY money, since there were no kidnappers to give money to. Rather, I think he picked that amount so that it would appear like the "kidnapper" was someone who resented the fact that he got the bonus, perhaps a disgruntled employee from his company or maybe even a friend of the family who secretly had a grudge against John and found out from Patsy about the bonus. I think John thought by using such an odd, yet familiar, amount, the police would think it unlikely John wrote the note because he would not ask for an amount that only he and Patsy knew about. In fact, he probably thought the police would never think either he or Patsy were involved because neither of them would ask for an amount that only they knew about. IMO, this was a very clever way of getting the police to think someone other than John or Patsy were involved. Funny thing is, it's one of the reasons many people think Patsy wrote the note -- that it was the first amount that came to her mind. Either way, it worked for John because he was ruled out from writing the note and I suspect the $118,000 asked for was one of the reasons.

      bb

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    2. I think both interpretations are correct. The 118,000 suggested some disgruntled employee who had access to company records, as you say. But it was also a small enough amount that John could easily part with it without pauperizing himself (as would be the case if the "kidnapper" had demanded a million dollar ransom instead).

      And yes, he would have to part with it, because it would be too risky to hangonto. Don't forget -- he'd have needed to go to the bank and collect that money in cash. He couldn't then attempt to redeposit it after claiming he'd handed it to "the kidnappers." And hanging onto the cash would have been extremely risky. He would probably have burned it.

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    3. Yeah, but why wouldn't he request a flat $100,000 or $125,000 then? Either amount would be sufficiently covered by the bonus he got. I still think the $118,000 was requested because it would cause police to suspect someone who was either jealous or angry about John's bonus. And it did. They asked him a lot of questions about any disgruntled employees. Actually, I remember that was MY thought when this case first broke out. Unlike all the PDI's who instantly thought Patsy did it because she would have known the bonus amount, I instantly thought it was someone who hated John and knew about his bonus.

      And I do think he would have the means to stash the money somehow, somewhere. He was a very successful millionaire who I believe could easily have had bank accounts in Switzerland. Burn the money?? I don't see that selfish, arrogant man doing that. Burying it? Perhaps. He'd certainly be able to do that after he disposed of the body.

      bb

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    4. I'd say that both aspects are true. He was concerned about being forced to cough up more ransom than he could afford. So, by selecting more or less the exact amount of his bonus he could make it look like the "kidnapper" had inside information about his finances and was making a statement.

      Whether he might have been able to salvage the ransom after dumping the body is hard to say. It would certainly have been risky. $118,000 in small bills is pretty hard to hide.

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  37. (Kikigirl) I too have began reading more on your blog, Doc, and now see that John would have more likely been the one responsible for Jonbenet's death.

    As far as the bedroom photos showing one side of the bed used and the other less likely so, it could have been Patsy sleeping through the night, and John awake the whole time.
    I could see John wiping the flashlight thoroughly, not so much Patsy.
    But still, I wonder how Jonbenet got those abrasions, since clearly they were not stun gun marks. Poor child.

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    1. Yes, bb. Even if a clearer photo showed that the pillow had been undisturbed, we don't know whose pillow it was.

      In any case, I feel sure that possibility would have been investigated and if they'd determined that one side of the bed hadn't been slept in that would have been a big part of the investigation and would certainly have been reported in the media. Like so much else in this case it was probably considered "inconclusive."

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    2. As for JonBenet's abrasions, that's an excellent question. But we'll probably never know exactly what went down that night between JBR and JR. I suspect that at some point John could have flown into a rage, possibly after the head blow, when he realized what he had done and may have been blaming JonBenet. He might have turned on her at that point and started beating her and tossing her around, just out of anger and frustration, feeling that she'd ruined his life.

      I don't think this could have happened before the head blow, because she'd have been screaming bloody murder the whole time.

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    3. (Kikigirl) I listened to an interview with Cyril Wecht last night, and he talked about the head blow as happening when she would've been unconscious due to the cord's tightening around the neck, thus causing her to get inadequate oxygen to her brain. In other words, the blow didn't come first because there was very little blood found under that injury. He says that would only have happened if the heart stopped pumping blood or was shutting down. If the blow happened first, there would have been a lot more blood in that area of the head where the injury occurred.

      If the strangulation happened first and the head blow next, then that changes the whole staging scenario. Cyril Wecht believes this was a sex game gone bad and the head blow came last. So the staging wasn't the garrote, but the head blow. Completely reversed from what we normally think happened.

      When Cyril said it was a sex game that clearly has happened before, and that the damage to her internal private parts happened at 7 o'clock, the position a gynecologist's finger would have when doing an exam, I immediately thought of Jonbenet's saying at one of her pageants. When asked what she wanted to be when she grows up, she said a doctor to help people. When asked what kind of doctor she said, a pediatrician.

      I wonder why a small child wants to be a pediatrician, a doctor who helps children get better. Was it because she was told by adult(s) who wanted to initiate a sex play, that they were going to play doctor with her? I understand in most cases a child who says she wants to be a pediatrician has nothing to do with inappropriate sexual behavior, but rather a genuine curiosity in helping sick children, like cancer survivors, for example. But since in this case there is evidence of prior molestation, then more likely Jonbenet would have been introduced to the term pediatrician as relating to her private parts. Her bed wetting could have been as a result of that as well, again more emphasis on the crotch area. Did John know of her bed wetting and use it as a pretext to "examine" her during the times he wanted to molest her?

      So Cyril Wecht thinks the garroting must have happened first, based on the amount of blood found around the brain area. I don't think Kolar puts the garroting as first. Wouldn't the autopsy report clearly indicate which happened first?

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    4. Yes, Wecht believes JBR's death was an accident, stemming from "erotic strangulation," a practice that's lead to many an accidental death, and something Wecht would be well aware of.

      It's an interesting theory but with all respect to Wecht, who is far more knowledgeable and experienced than I, I don't think it holds up. For one thing erotic strangulation isn't very erotic when performed with a thin length of cord, which as is evident from the autopsy photos, digs deeply into the flesh. I've never attempted this sort of thing myself, but I'd imagine that something like a kerchief or even a necktie would be more "erotic" than what we see in the autopsy photos.

      Secondly, tufts of JBR's hair were found intertwined with the knotting of the device, meaning it must have been constructed right on top of her. As her hair would have been pulled in the process and this would have been very painful that does not seem consistent with anything remotely erotic. Also, as her hair was being pulled she would have been struggling, which would have made it almost impossible to tie the very "elegant" knots we see in the photos.

      As I understand it, most pathologists concluded that the head blow must have come first and I agree. The relatively small amount of blood has been explained by at least some of these experts as not unusual in such cases.



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  38. It's important to understand that "erotic" is to be seen from the eyes of the perp, not the victim. I'm sure JBR didn't experience anything remotely erotic, and how could she at age 6 ? The eroticism, as I understand it, is from the convulsions the victim has. Convulsions that mimic orgasm. The perp finds this erotic, not the victim. There are other forms of EA where the choking is self inflicted. In those cases the lack of oxygen is erotic to the practitioner. That doesn't apply in this case.

    As Doc points out, the furrows in the neck are deep. My own experiments reconstructing the garrotte show me that the "slip knot" does not in fact slip very well. Specifically if tightens easily, but does not loosen easily. It's hard to believe an EA game involved tightening to the point of creating such deep furrows, but maybe so. I'm not expert on EA, nor do I wish to be.

    I think Doc has it right that the blow to the head came first. There seems to be no reasonable explanation for a blow to the head after the asphyxiation, especially as it is not visible and only detected at autopsy. What would it accomplish ?

    It's my opinion (for what little that is worth) that the blow to the head left her still breathing - IOWs still obviously alive. If she were dead, or appeared dead, why bother with strangulation? No need to kill her twice. The strangulation produces death with certainty which is why I think it comes second - no need for additional injury when she's dead.

    The blow to the head, whether an act of rage, or simply an accident, created an injury that she wasn't going to recover from. It became necessary to finish her off, then concoct the phoney kidnapping. At least that's how I see it.

    CH

    If anyone can come up with a good reason to bash her skull, after strangulation, I'd like to hear it.

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  39. I also agree with Doc that the head blow came before the strangulation. First of all, I think it would be difficult to carry out a blow like that while JB was lying down. The location of the cracked skull and the length of it makes me think it would have had to be done while she was standing, or at least sitting up.

    This is what I think happened. John lured JB down to the basement under the pretense of looking at some additional Christmas presents. Then while he was doing his thing to her, she may have resisted him, saying she didn't like it anymore and was going to tell mommy. Or, like Doc has suggested, maybe she threatened to tell her older sister the next day when they visited. A struggle may have ensued and as she was going back up the stairs he struck her head with the flashlight (I think he took the flashlight down to the basement as part of their secret mission to find the presents). At this point I think he just lost it. I'm sure he was in shock and he knew he had to finish her off, or perhaps he had the presence of mind to think that garroting her would help with the staging --- making it look like a deranged sex maniac killed her.

    I was surprised to hear that Wecht believes the strangulation was part of EA. From everything I've heard about EA, BOTH participants enjoy it, as hard as it is to believe. Well obviously that was not happening in this case. I think it is far fetched to think John was getting off on it by himself.

    Why he chose to garrote her to finish her off is a mystery to me. I've always wondered why he didn't just smother her at that point. Could it have something to do with his experiences in the Navy?? Does anyone know if he was ever sent into combat?

    bb

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    1. JR was not in combat but was stationed at Subic Bay in the Phillipines. The history of garotte use in the Phillipines is well documented. As is also the child sex industry. FYI...Access Graphics, then later Lockheed Martin, had an international office in the Phillipines.

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    2. Thanks for this information! Very interesting, indeed.

      bb

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  40. Doc, assuming JR committed the crime and throughout the night he was able to kill JBR, write a note, break a window and attempt to cover his tracks, then why leave the body in the house? Everything you have written makes sense about JR, but why not take the body to his car? If the whole purpose of the note according to you was to buy himself time with PR, to allow him the whole day to cover his tracks, why wouldn't he get the body out of the house first?
    The note had to have taken some time to write and all the while his wife and son were asleep upstairs. IMO it just doesn't add up to spend that much time to write a thorough note and hinge his freedom on a medicated Patsy Ramsey not calling the cops. JR could have done his whole plan, but had he just placed JBR in the trunk or in the garage, he would have been able to get out of the house with her.

    -J

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    1. (Kikigirl) I would think that it was safer to keep her down there than in the car for the time being. Like someone on this blog said, he wanted his wife and son out of the house before he continued with the plan.

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    2. Driving away in his car in the middle of the night would have been incredibly dangerous. Patsy or Burke might have heard the car starting or the garage door opening. A neighbor might have spotted his car driving off. If anyone at all had recognized him or his car at any point during that time he would have been cooked.

      If you think about it, I believe you'll see that the plan I've outlined was his only hope. Write a note to scare Patsy into not calling the cops and at the same time discourage her from searching the house. Then get her and Burke out of the house. Finally, go to the bank, get the cash, and then, after dark, drive out to some remote spot to dump the body and destroy all the evidence, claiming later that he was delivering the ransom.

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    3. J,
      I, too, often wondered why JR wouldn't just put the body in the trunk of his car, ready to go the following day after he got Patsy and Burke out of the house. I agree with Doc that actually leaving that night would be far too risky. But putting the body in his car would put him at EXTREME risk if, for some reason, Patsy or Burke discovered it. I can see why he would not want any connection to that body and he probably felt safer just leaving it in the wine cellar. If she was found there, at least it could be suggested that it was a kidnapping gone wrong. After all, she was dead and the "kidnappers" would have just left her and gotten out of the house as fast as possible. Of course, leaving BOTH the note and body behind is something the "kidnappers" probably would NOT do. But John was counting on getting that body out of the house to complete the kidnapping scenario. I agree with Doc that the purpose of the note was to buy him time to complete that part of the staging the following day. If JR had put the body in the trunk of his car and then Patsy called the police (which he was not planning on), I believe he would have removed her from his car and hidden her in the wine cellar. If the police had searched his car and found her, he'd have a lot of explaining to do. Maybe this is what he was doing during the 45 minutes he disappeared when Det. Arndt was there. I know I would! I would NOT want that body connected to me in any way --- certainly not in my car!

      bb

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    4. On a side note . . . too bad the police didn't check the trunk of his car for evidence. Or maybe they did??? Doc, do you know if they did?

      bb

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    5. If they did, they might have found fibers from the blanket in the trunk -- assuming John had placed the body there at first. But I have no idea whether they did or didn't. Nor whether the body had been in the trunk at any time.

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    6. (Kikigirl) But if he were to leave on the 26th after Burke and Patsy left, to dispose of the body, wouldn't someone see his car leave? There is that risk. Also even if no one would see him leave or if he would say that he went to deliver the ransom money, the police would want to trace the phone call made from the kidnappers to John arranging a meeting spot. And there would be no such record of a phone call. Clearly nothing on his cell phone (if he had one in 1996) and nothing on the home line. So the police would ask how he knew where to go and at what time.

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    7. Kiki, your questions are answered in the final segment of this blog post: http://solvingjonbenet.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-purpose-of-note.html

      In a nutshell, if someone had seen John's car on the 26th he could claim he was following the directions of the kidnappers and delivering the ransom.

      The "kidnapper's" phone call would have been produced by John himself, calling home from a phone booth after collecting the ransom from the bank. With Patsy and Burke out of the house, the call would have been picked up by his answering machine and there would have been no way for the police to recreate that "conversation." However, the phone company would have a record of when and from where the call was made.

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    8. (Kikigirl) That's right, DocG. I remember reading that on your blog. Hopefully there would be no cameras or people that would have found him going or being in a phone booth after the stop at the bank.

      But, yeah, that does sound like an only plan for him to get out of this mess. Somehow lucky for him, he got out of it without following through the plan.
      Sad to think that Jonbenet met her death and no one in that dysfunctional family is paying for their mistakes. That poor child. She certainly had enough money but not enough genuine love and care.

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  41. I agree with the poster above who said that eroticism is in the eye of the beholder. Anything can be sexual to anyone if that's what their preference/fetish is. Dr. Wecht convinces me of the sex game gone awry by the fact that the garrotte didn't cause a lot of underlying damage to JB's neck. It didn't crush her larynx, as will almost always happen to someone being strangled.

    I believe what Dr. Wecht writes, that the cord was tightened just enough for the molester's "pleasure," but was not meant to kill her. She had bruising on either side of her brain, which was consistent with injuries seen in children with "shaken baby syndrome." As if the molester had tightened the cord in a sexual way while penetrating her with a gloved finger. Sadly, the cord pressed too hard on her vagus nerve, causing her to lose consciousness and her heart to slow.

    The molester would then have shaken her in a desperate attempt to waken her, thus leaving the bruising seen in her brain.

    When she didn't wake up, the panicked molester then became a killer by smashing her over her head. In this scenario, it appears the head wound is part of the staging, even though it contributed to her death. I believe it was THEN that the knots (some say they're elaborate; others say amateur) were made, and entangled with her hair. Her head injury didn't bleed much (the equivalent of a couple teaspoons of blood) because her heart had already slowed to the point that death was imminent. I've never seen the opinions of the experts who said there were reasons for the lack of blood from the head wound (mentioned in a post above). If someone could point me to them, I'd appreciate it.

    I think the tightening of the cord and the deep furrow it created in JB's neck came after she had lost consciousness from the erotic game.

    [THE BLOG ISN'T LETTING ME POST MY ENTIRE COMMENT, SO I'LL HAVE TO DO IT IN TWO SECTIONS...]

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  42. If you'll indulge me, I'd like to quote a bit from Dr. Wecht's book, "Who Killed JonBenet Ramsey?"

    p.99:
    [OPEN QUOTE] Just above the coroner's observations about JonBenet's vaginal injuries, Meyer had written a paragraph that next attracted Wecht's attention. Here Meyer addressed what he had found when he examined JonBenet's brain. Wecht had seen the reports that she had suffered a fractured skull, and Meyer had referred obliquely to that in his conclusion about the cause of death....From page one, Wecht learned that the head injuries included a contusion to the scalp, subarachnoid and subdural hemorrhages, and small contusions on the tips of the temporal lobes of the brain. Two other items under "craniocerebral injuries" had been deleted by the judge.
    The scalp contusion - a bruise - obviously associated with the skull fracture, surely caused by the hard blow that broke the bone beneath it. The subdural hemorrhage referred to blood from the injury to the brain that pooled under the dura membrane that lies between the skull and the brain. The subarachnoid hemorrhage was blood that collected under the arachnoid membrane, a spiderweb-like material under the dura. Those kinds of hemorrhages were almost always caused by trauma. They were not natural occurrences.
    The third reference also fascinated the medical detective. He had seen such bruises to the temporal lobes of the brain - the portions that lie behind the temples on the sides of the head - and they resulted from shaking someone and causing the brain to shift inside the skull, striking the bone on the sides. The report offered no reference to injuries on the outside of the head at those locations, so the internal bruises probably were not the result of blows.
    Wecht wove this new bit of evidence into the rest of his developing analysis. While the attacker was applying the perverted use of the garrote that pinched the vagus nerve in her neck and eventually shut down her heart and lungs, the young prey had suddenly turned lifeless without explanation - perhaps literally in her abuser's arms. Wasn't it likely that the shocked and panicking molester had shaken JonBenet in a futile attempt to return her to consciousness? A few anxiety-driven shakes and a "Wake up! Wake up!" had failed to restore her to life, but had inflicted the bruises to the temporal lobe of her brain. It all seemed to fit. [CLOSE QUOTE]

    Doc, would ever consider doing a podcast and inviting Dr. Wecht to come on and discuss your individual theories? I know he has appeared on Trisha Griffith's True Crime Radio and I'm sure he'd say yes to you, too. I'd love to listen in on that conversation!

    Thank you very much, and a quick thank you to all the posters on this blog who keep it so mature and civilized. We can disagree with each other here without the thread degrading into insults and nonsense. I, for one, really appreciate that.

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    1. Piper, between you and Dr. Wecht, I have to admit that there is a case to be made for the erotic strangulation theory. Especially when you remind us that the assembling of the "garotte" could have been done after she'd been (accidentally) strangled. Well thought out and well presented.

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    2. Kikigirl-I heard somewhere that typically erotic strangulation involves a much thicker rope. The one used on Jonbenet was much too thin for such an activity. Therefore, maybe the strangulation had no erotic components to the murderer. But why strangle your own child, is beyond my comprehension.

      Piper, thanks for sharing Dr. Wechts findings.

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    3. Piper, thank you for your comment above. Yes -- very well thought out!! I haven't read Dr. Wecht's book yet, but I did find this fascinating interview of him on YouTube:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlU6ErG4mZg

      If anyone is unable to open this link, search for "Write from the Author" on YouTube.

      I have to admit that his theory is extremely compelling. I suppose the thing that always made me dismiss the erotic strangulation theory is that I just could not believe JR would ever have been interested in this sex game, especially with his six-year old daughter. And then I realized how naive I have been! There are many "wolves in lambskin clothing" in this world. None of us will ever know JR's secret sexual fantasies, but I suspect now, after hearing Dr. Wecht's explanations of the forensic evidence, that this erotic strangulation was, indeed, something JR enjoyed. And I also believe it went wrong that night and he could not revive JB. Perhaps those marks and abrasions on JB have something to do with him trying to resuscitate her? I'll have to find out what Dr. Wecht says about those in his book.

      Doc, I know you've touched on just about every single topic there is regarding this case, but I would love to see another post from you regarding Dr. Wecht's theory. I have to admit, after hearing Dr. Wecht in this interview, he reminded me of you. He is very intelligent, articulate, thorough and, as you've said, a gentleman. So if you get bored, a new post regarding Dr. Wecht would be very welcome by all of us, I'm sure. You've got to know by now that we all hunger for your posts!

      bb



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    4. Kikigirl- Seeing how Jonbenet looked in those pageant outfits certainly does not surprise me if the father crossed that moral line. The black and white diamond one, or the gold one with feathers especially made her look much older than she was. I also observed her mannerisms while performing which were too provocative for any child to display naturally, so someone taught her to dance, move like that.

      So it is not a far stretch to think that her father could have become enamoured with his little Lolita. How he could have done anything behind Patsy's back is almost unbelievable. What a rotten man!

      On another note, he strikes me as unbelievable based on the things he says, like when he spoke to the police or detectives and said the kidnapper left behind "funny little clues." Who says that in regards to your daughter's murder?! The usage of "funny" in dealing with such a situation shows he is not right. Not to mention I'm yet to see him show any sorrow. Even in the quick clips of him at the funeral, coming out of church, while Patsy is crying, he walks behind her with almost a smile on his face. Again, what is that?!

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    5. Yes, there are plenty of "funny little clues" in this case and that is an odd thing for JR to say. IMO, some of the most obvious clues are all the things John has said over the years. His choice of words is very telling. Things like, "everyone carries a burden", "forgiveness is a gift I give myself", "it was madness, looking back on it", "that was the crushing blow", "a proper burial", and on and on and on. Not to mention how much he loves using percents. Unfortunately, these things are not evidence of the crime he committed.

      I just discovered his new wife is a costume designer in Las Vegas and does a lot of costumes for beauty pageants. Look her up on Facebook and you'll see. When I saw the pictures of the costumes she has done, it instantly made me think of the pictures of JB that Kikigirl describes above. Is that all just a big coincidence? Again, this isn't evidence but yet another "funny little clue."

      bb

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    6. He mentions the "burdens" people carry often. I just discovered another interview where he says, "pretty much everyone carries a burden . . . many times you don't know that they are, but they are." First of all, I've never heard anyone who has lost a child describe it as a "burden." That word just doesn't seem appropriate because it to implies that her death gave him something heavy that he has had to carry around. Oh, wait . . . maybe it IS appropriate for him to say.

      bb

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    7. Piper, you have made a good case. What I don't understand is how the blow to the head could have been staging. It was invisible to the police. It was only detected at autopsy. What was a blow to the head which could not be seen except by the Coroner meant to accomplish? I might be lacking imagination, but I really don't see how it stages anything.

      The perp of course knows very well she took a blow to the head.

      CH

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    8. Maybe the blow to the head was not part of staging. If JR was unable to revive JB after the strangulation, maybe he felt the need to just finish her off, perhaps to ensure she wasn't suffering at all. OR maybe he struck the blow in a fit of rage and anger . . . impotence comes to mind here. How many times have we heard of such a scenario where a perp who can't carry out his sexual fantasy decides to just kill his victim, blaming them for their inability to perform.

      I know it's hard to believe the strangulation is what killed her (whether because of EA or because he was a sadistic sicko), but Dr. Wecht is extremely convincing on this point. The ONLY thing that I don't understand is how he could have tied that garrote, which pulled some of JB's hair (as evidenced by the hair caught up in the knot of the garrote) without her screaming out from the pain. Doc has talked about this point in his argument that the garroting came AFTER the blow to the head. It's definitely a puzzling detail. Maybe she DID scream. Maybe that was the scream the neighbor supposedly heard.

      There has certainly been a lot of discussion recently on this blog about the events leading to her death and which came first, the strangulation or
      the blow to the head. But regardless of how exactly she died, I am still convinced that JR is guilty of this crime. Aside from all the "funny little clues" left behind that point to JR, the MAIN reason I believe he killed her is because of the prior sexual molestation, which Dr. Wecht also is quite convincing of. That to me is the smoking gun.

      bb

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    9. All in all, while Piper does make sense, I tend to go with CH's argument. It IS hard to understand the motive for a head blow that followed a strangulation. While on the other hand it makes sense to assume that once John decided he had to kill his daughter, he would want to do it in the least painful manner. While a blow to the head might seem violent, it's actually the most merciful way to kill someone. Even if the blow wasn't fatal it certainly knocked her out. She probably never felt a thing and never knew who hit her. Let's hope it happened that way.

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  43. Kikigirl, I've read that it's possible that John saw JB as a sexual substitute because Patsy had been ill with cancer and chemo for so long and was not available to him as a sexual partner. She didn't sleep in their marital bed for a long time, as she couldn't handle going up and down the stairs. She slept in a bedroom on the main floor and her mother, Nedra, moved in to help her.

    Some psychologists have posited that Patsy may have even encouraged JB to take her place, subconsciously, of course.

    I used to believe that if John was the killer, he must have exhibited some sort of deviant behaviour prior to, or after the murder. I've since learned that there have been many recorded cases of child sexual abuse that are one-time-only events. Apparently, an abuser can live as a model parent, only to commit a single act of abuse and then never do it again. I know that sounds unlikely, but it can happen. And as JB's body tells us, her abuse was not a single, one-time event. Her chronic vaginal injuries proved that whoever hurt her had done it before.

    And I know the image you're referring to, where John and Patsy are exiting the church after the memorial and Patsy's face is the picture of grief. John is standing behind her, smiling benevolently. I know this is just a single moment in time, but the tableau it presents is very interesting.

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  44. (kikigirl) I have never before looked at Jan Rousseaux but after Anonymous pointed out her work, I looked at her Facebook page, and it gave me an awkward feeling. It made me think that this is no coincidence. John seems to be attracted to feathers and sparkle. Patsy was in charge of the pageants and professional photo shoots, but John must've been on the side lines, observing with lust. What a rotten man!

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    1. Interesting. I wonder how they met. And where.

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    2. They met in Denver at a wedding in 2009 and were married in Michigan in 2011.

      http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2019351/Happiness-father-tragic-beauty-queen-JonBenet-Ramsey-remarries-Las-Vegas-fashion-designer.html

      Interestingly, this article states,

      "Mr Ramsey made arrangements for the ransom, which a friend picked up that morning from a local bank."

      This has to be false. I've never, ever heard this before.

      bb

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    3. No, it's not false. JR made arrangements through friends for the ransom to be available that morning. The police misread the note and were expecting a call from the "kidnapper" between 8 and 10AM that morning, which is of course absurd. So John was forced to play along by pulling some strings to raise the money in case the "kidnapper" actually did call -- which he of course knew was NOT gonna happen.

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  45. Perhaps the head wound was the effect of an act of rage, when her father couldn't revive her. If it was in fact, John, he obviously had no problem treating her body as an object, to do with as he pleased.

    When I mentioned in my scenario above that the head wound was part of the staging, I meant that it was done to deflect attention from the real cause of death, the erotic asphyxiation. It's just a theory, in that everything done after JB lost consciousness was done to create the image of a crazed sexual psychopath. The cord embedded in her neck (which didn't actually strangle her because her internal neck apparatus was undamaged), the blow to the head, and the knotting of the garrotte, which caught some of her hair in the process. She would have been unconscious and dying when all this happened.

    Even if it's something that only the coroner discovers, it can still be considered staging in my opinion, because the point of it is to deflect attention from the EA. Perhaps John hoped the blow would create an open wound that could be easily seen, but when it didn't, just moved on. He certainly hit her hard enough; he was probably surprised he didn't break the skin. Someone, I believe it was the coroner, said that the assailant would have felt her skull collapse.

    There are many possibilities. I wish John and Burke would just come clean. I'm convinced Burke heard what happened that night.

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    1. Piper, I agree with what you're saying. I was thinking the same thing --- that he caused the blow to her head to make it appear like some "intruder" maniac killed her and certainly not her parents. I especially like what you said, "he obviously had no problem treating her body as an object, to do with as he pleased", which should satisfy those out there who still can't believe he would do that to his daughter. He molested her didn't he? That in itself shows total disrespect and disregard to her body, her mind and her right to live. His life was obviously more important. What a selfish, sick man.

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  46. I don't know that Burke necessarily saw or heard anything. The fact that the Rs let sent him off with friends suggests to me they weren't worried about him revealing anything, so I tend to think he didn't see/hear anything.

    Burke very well knows whether or not the window was broken prior to that night. If we could only get Burke into and interview room and give him a shot of truth serum.....

    CH

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    1. No doubt Burke was given the same "pep talk" Patsy got. "We know the window was broken by the intruder. But the police are convinced we broke it. And the only way to get around this is to claim it was already broken ahead of time. If I hadn't made up that story your mother and I would be sitting in jail by now."

      Note also that John delayed questioning of Burke for as long as possible, claiming he was "too young."

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  47. There is no way to know, of course, so this is just a contributing thought, but I'm not entirely sure that John's plan was to make it look like a sexual sadist broke in, which could explain why the "staging" is confusing and inconsistent.

    What we do know for sure is that someone wanted to give the impression of a kidnapping. The effort stems around a faked kidnapping. The ransom note wants to introduce a foreign faction, who advises they are familiar with law enforcement countermeasures, and they want to make a deal. A very business-like proposition ensues: we want your money, you want your daughter. With your cooperation, we can make the business transaction happen.

    The staging seems organized. The "kidnapping" forethought seems organized. The staging seems to want to be consistent with a professional kidnapping for ransom.

    Where we see disorganization is in the sexual nature of the crime. If we are to believe that John never intended on anyone else physically seeing JonBenet that day, we may be able to learn something from the frenzied assault and body itself.

    Maybe, we see a well staged kidnapping with dominance and efficiency, post-crime, due to the familiarity John had at exuding control over Patsy. He felt confident enough to stage a kidnapping.

    We see confusion and inexactness with the body, which is where a separate crime occurred. The staging within the areas of the strangulation/garroting/digital penetration/and skull fracture are inconsistent and ambiguous, which sets itself apart from the organized psychological mechanisms and motivations of the kidnapping.

    -H

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  48. Continued...Which makes me totally receptive to what you posted, Pepper, about Dr. Wecht's theory. I have not read his book, so I very much appreciate what you have posted. I am going to read it.

    What I am having trouble with, still, is the element of staging. I can't understand a need for the staging at all. Can anyone help me rationalize this any better? I believe that JR did not think that 911 or anyone else was going to be called to the house that day. I guess, my train of thought is, JR felt confident that he was in control of the situation and PR would follow the instructions to the letter. The poorly staged duct tape on the mouth and loosely tied knots around the wrist can be easily accounted for and explained, by JR thinking that a kidnapper might do those two things. That element of staging could have easily occurred at any time, even when the plans had shifted to include people within the home. But I cannot make sense of the head bash and garrote as STAGING. Even in families, where a teenager or loved one accidentally dies, during a choking game or autoerotic hanging or asphyxiation gone horribly wrong, the family ,often times, removes any evidence of the activity at the scene, in an attempt to make the death look like a deliberate suicide, rather than an accident. There is usually great shame and humiliation experienced with these deaths, by family and loved ones.

    What makes very sound scientific sense is the head bash coming last, at or near the time of death. I am in the medical field, and you must understand how instant a goose egg or lump or swelling occurs when being struck or falling. Her skull fracture was traumatic. The broken pieces of bone would have ruptured blood vessels in any part of her head. We do not see any response from the body to a severe skull fracture. We do not see bruising behind the ears, bruising under the eyes, bleeding ears, nose or around the eyes. To me, personally, it only makes biological sense that she had suffered from a lack of oxygen to the brain for some time, resulting in the circulation of blood being cut off, from constriction.

    We do see Petechial Hemorrhaging in the eyes, in the autopsy, however. This is a mild form of hemorrhaging, classic with asphyxiation, when blood escapes from the vessels. Which means we have blood circulating at the time of asphyxiation and no brain swelling or bleeding consistent with a head trauma at the time of asphyxiation. To me, the head blow is not staging. It merely indicates panic and overkill, often seen with a death attributed to a killer who knew his victim. The same can be seen with shooting victims. Why shoot someone twice, when the first bullet did the trick? Strangers and burglars shoot and run. Someone who knows you makes sure you are really dead.

    That just makes more sense to me. I would love to hear anyone else's take on this. Thanks!

    -H

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  49. Hi H,

    I encourage you to read Dr.Wecht's book. As someone with a medical background, you'll especially appreciate his assessments. Even though it's written for a lay audience, having specialized medical knowledge can only be to your advantage.

    No doubt the head wound indicates panic and overkill, and I only suggest that the wound can be interpreted as staging because I believe it was intended to deflect attention from the real cause of death: erotic asphyxiation.

    In families where a member has died accidentally of EA, it's not surprising that they remove evidence of the sexual nature of the death and try to stage a "normal" suicide, as this is much less embarrassing. But in the Ramsey case, even though the death appears to be an accidental erotic asphyxiation, no one would ever believe JB had been playing this game by herself on Christmas night. Authorities, even incompetent ones, could only conclude that this had been done TO her, so John had to stage the evidence to point away from himself and toward some shadowy intruder or foreign faction.

    And you bring up a good point, H: if John had intended all along to get the body out of the house, why all the elaborate staging? DocG has mentioned several times in his blog that Detective Arndt lost track of John for over an hour during the later morning of December 26th. Even though it would have been exceedingly risky to do so, perhaps he used this time to complete the staging because he knew his initial plan had been foiled and the body would have to be found in the house eventually.

    I'd be interested in hearing any additional thoughts you have once you've read Dr. Wecht's book. Your medical knowledge can add much to our discussion.

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    1. Yes, Piper, Arndt lost track of John for a considerable length of time. Which made it possible for him to do all sorts of staging after his original plan had been blown. I think he could have tied her hands and placed the duct tape over her mouth at that time. Also moved her from a dark corner, covered by a blanket, to the center of the room, uncovered -- so he could later claim the body was "right out in the open."

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    2. H- I think this is a possible scenario. JR uses the garrote (or maybe not even the garrote but his hands around her neck) while he molests JBR. She loses oxygen and dies. He realizes he has to get rid of her body, writes the ransom note with the plan of getting rid of her body in the attache when he either gets the money at the bank or delivers the money to a location, then hits her on the head with an object that would be viewed as having been the cause of her death by the captors. The blow was not done to kill her further, the blow was to add another element to her cause of death and deflect from the strangulation that occurred during his sexual molestation.

      Once Patsy calls the cops and his plan is thwarted, staging with the garrote was completed either before or after the police got there as he knew he would not be able to get JBR's body out of the house and the police would find her body. He had stage the scene to look like an intruder came into the house, killed JBR, then left. Since her head did not bleed from the blow to head and JR had no way of knowing that there was large skull fracture that would have provided evidence as the cause of death, he had to provide visible evidence of JBR's cause of death for the police and detectives, otherwise, how would it be explained that his six year old daughter lay dead in the basement having had her oxygen cut off? The garrote was either again put around JBR's neck or put on for the first time, however it was done in an exaggerated way (exaggerated for staging) which is why it was so deep into the skin and it was done hastily so her hair was caught up in the rope. JR was probably sensitive to the fact that with JBR's body being found in the house, having died from asphyxia so he had to make it visible as to why she would have died from asphyxia. He was probably hoping the garrote would also explain the molestation from "intruders" if found molestation was found. I think if the ransom note was written in a way that was meant to explain the molestation and garrote, it would have been written differently, including wording of possibly sexually abusing JBR if the money was not received. I think if the letter were written with this slant from the start, JR would have made the intruder theory a lot more plausible. A ransom note and kidnap does not equal up with sexual abuse and a garrote. They are two completely different crimes and it is highly unusual for them to overlap. The fact that JBR was found in the house, having been sexually abused and with a garrote around her neck, and very little evidence of an intruder (if the intruder was able to "escape" from the house, they could have taken the little girl too), and the fact that the note had one crime slant but the body indicated a different crime slant, the Ramsey's should have been arrested.

      Anon3

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  50. Piper, thank you for your response! Also, I apologize for inadvertently referring to you as Pepper in my previous post! I'm sorry :)

    I am excited to read his book, now. Thank you for the recommendation. I do agree that some particular degree of staging absolutely occurred, during the day, with law enforcement and others in and out of the house. An element of staging did become absolutely necessary for John at some point, considering the situation he found himself in. I guess where my trouble lies is rationalizing what purpose it would serve to stage a garroting. Do you think he placed it on her at a later time? What I have read about these types of deaths, the families remove the strangulation devices and rid the evidence and sort of clean up the crime scene, to spare the shame and embarrassment associated with a sexual strangulation death. So, this would be the opposite, if I am understanding correctly. John would place a staged strangulation device around her? What would be the purpose? If the sexual assault was non-violent, why use an obvious erotic asphyxiation device, to point away from yourself and towards a sexual predator? It just seems to me like, the jig was up at some point. John knew when his older children would be arriving at the house from the airport, and he was running out of time. He did what we could, but he was going to be stuck with a body in the house with a ligature around the neck. A far cry from a hi-tech group of individuals looking for money, but now a "monster" who faked a kidnapping to non-violently digitally penetrate and erotically asphyxiate his daughter and leave her for dead in his home and want no ransom. It is so hard to make sense out of his nonsense! Which is why he wanted to leave town, lawyer up and not take a lie detector test and submit to police interrogations. He wasn't able to stage his way out of that crazy mess!

    -H

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  51. @ both H and Pipper

    Let's be clear that she was actually asphyxiated. We know this from the petchial hemorrhaging. So, the garrote could be a single purpose instrument, or dual purpose - that is, it could serve to ensure death and is not meant as staging, or it could ensure death and also be part of a staged scene. We know she was garroted while still alive.

    CH

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    1. Thanks so much for your input, H, Piper and CH. H's medical opinion does make a lot of sense. As I understand it, however, most of the pathologists who reviewed the autopsy decided that the head blow must have come first. Not certain where I read that -- I'll see if I can track it down.

      In any case, I don't think either the head blow or the strangulation was staging. Since the plan as I see it was to remove the body from the house, the staging of a pedophile intruder would not have been necessary.

      This is the big problem with the standard interpretation of the case where it's assumed that both a kidnapping and a sexual assault were staged. If you stage one then there's no point in staging the other, and also the two tend to contradict one another.

      The evidence pertaining to the murder itself is disorganized because the murder was the disorganized act of a panicked and confused individual. The kidnap staging on the other hand was devised by someone who had obviously pulled himself together and was thinking very cooly and logically.

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    2. Doc, I could not agree with you more. There would be absolutely no need to stage a pedophile intruder.

      A pedophile living within the residence would have a unique need to explain the absence of a living child, when he has unintentionally abused a child to the point of death.

      Thanks, Doc, and please do let me know what you find out about the head blow coming first. I am very interested in reading the information that you have!

      -H

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    3. Here's what I was able to find about the head blow:

      Ronald Wright, MD "director of the forensic pathology department at the University of Miami School of Medicine, reviewed JonBenet's autopsy report Tuesday at the request of the Rocky Mountain News." RMN stated: "The blow to her head -- which Wright is convinced was not from a golf club but more likely a blunt object such as a baseball bat or heavy flashlight -- came first, Wright said. "She was whopped on the head a long time before she was strangled," said Wright. 'That might or might not have rendered her unconscious. But this is not anything that kills her right away.' He said 20 to 60 minutes elapsed between the skull fracture and the strangulation."

      Head Blow with Little Bleeding Possible. Kerry Brega, chief neurologist at Denver Health Medical Center, said it is not uncommon for people with skull fractures to not have any bleeding. "We see a lot of people with skull fractures without bleeds in the brain, and they didn't all get strangled on the way in," she said. "So it is actually possible to get a skull fracture without getting an underlying bleed in the brain."
      Petechiae Evidence. The presence of petechiae have been used by some as proof that JBR was still alive while strangled, but if death occurred during strangulation, this would imply the head blow came first. However, Internet poster BluesStrat has found the following quote on-line: "Petechiae (puh-TEE-key-eye) are tiny little broken capillary blood vessels. Everyone has had them. A hard bout of coughing or vomiting can cause facial petechiae, especially around the eyes. These mean nothing. Newborns often have facial petechiae from the tight squeeze through the cervix. Thus petechiae are fairly common and in general of no concern."

      Personal Experience. Internet poster Ames was temporarily strangled as a 9-year-old schoolgirl. Based on this experience, she is certain that if JBR had been still conscious while strangled, she would have clawed extensively at her neck to avoid the terrifying experience of being strangled. The absence of deep neck scratches implies to this poster that JBR must have already been unconscious from the head blow.

      Evidence Against the Head Blow Coming First

      Expert Opinion. Internet poster SuperDave has reported that Drs. Michael Doberson and Cyril Wecht both concluded the head blow came after the strangulation.

      Wecht View. Wecht's explanation is as follows: "If you inflict a blow like that on someone whose heart is beating," he asserts, "the heart doesn't stop, because the cardiac and respiratory centers are at the base of the brain. You're not damaging that with a blow to the top of the head. It'll become compromised as the brain swells, but initially there's no compromise. They control your heart and lungs. The heart continues to beat. The blood continues to flow. But in the Ramsey case, they got less than a teaspoon and a half of blood. If you have a beating heart and the carotid arteries are carrying blood, this person doesn't die right away. That means that blow was inflicted when she was already dead or dying."

      Doberson View. "Adams County Coroner Mike Dobersen said he reviewed the autopsy photographs and thinks there would have been much more internal bleeding inside the brain if JonBenét had been struck first and strangled later."

      from http://jonbenetramsey.pbworks.com/w/page/11682481/Interpreting%20the%20Evidence

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  52. @ DogG, or anyone else who cares to comment.

    I'm convinced that JR's story about breaking the window is phoney. The inability to remember things such as driving his own car or taking a cab suggests he's making it up. More so, his failure to inform police, on the morning of the 26th, that he found the broken window slightly ajar tells me he didn't come up with that until the police interviews. If he'd really found it ajar that morning, he'd have mentioned it to the police that morning.

    So, while I have no problem with seeing the window story as made up, I do have a problem. The problem is this - IF (please note IF) the window had been broken several months prior then several other people know about the broken window. BR for sure. JBR for sure, though of course she is dead and can't be asked about it. JAR very likely. LHP almost certainly. Other invited guests and workmen have been in that basement between summer and Christmas.

    So, several people can confirm or deny the window had already been broken. Yet, as far as I know, only LHP has been asked. She doesn't seem to know anything about a broken window. It's hard to believe that BR/JAR and others have not been asked about the window, yet we don't know their responses.

    I won't buy the R's books, on principle, but as far as I can tell, even the Rs don't list anyone else as claiming to have noticed the broken window prior to the night of the murder. Any mention of BR or JAR confirming the window story in the Ramsey books?

    I don't recall anything in Thomas's book about BR or JAR commenting yea or nay on the matter.

    I'm thinking this is one bit of info that has never been leaked (why Thomas wouldn't mention it is perplexing) and that investigators very well know whether or not the window was broken months earlier or not. There are ample witnesses who either know the window has been broken for months, or who know nothing about a window being broken for months. Why have we not heard from anyone other than LHP?

    (Of course we've heard from JR/PR, but I;m seeking to confirm or deny their version of events).

    CH

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    1. You make an excellent point, CH. If the investigators had systematically looked into this then they'd certainly have known whether the window had been broken earlier or not. However, if they'd discovered that it HAD been broken, then why question John about it at such length, and on both occasions, a year apart? And why bother to ask both John and Patsy whether it had ever been repaired?

      My guess is that they did look into it and must have determined that the break was fresh. If not, then there'd have been no reason to ask questions about it having been repaired.

      You'd think, therefore, that they'd have realized John was lying, and that he must have broken the window himself on the night of the crime. But there's no sign in the record that they ever came to this conclusion. Were they that dense?

      My guess is that they were genuinely puzzled by John's story, because whether the window had been repaired or not, why would he have undercut his own staging by claiming he'd broken the window himself on an earlier occasion? And if it was a recent break, then where was all the glass?

      Moreover: since the police already doubted the intruder theory and sensed this was an inside job, they would have welcomed John's story because it pointed away from the basement window as an entry-exit point for an intruder. And again, why would John go out of his way to undermine the intruder theory?

      Magician's call this "misdirection," and in this case it seems to have worked perfectly for John.

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    2. To answer your question more completely, CH, according to the record, the early break-in story was confirmed, as far as we know, only by Patsy and no one else. JAR may or may not have known about it but my guess is that no one thought to ask him (because the investigators wanted to believe John's story and didn't want to push too far).

      As far as Burke is concerned, I think John must have worked on Burke to make sure he wouldn't spill the beans on all sorts of things he might have known about. Which is why he acted so oddly in his first interview and has more recently refused to cooperate.

      As far as the police were concerned, John's story confirmed their suspicions that no one had passed through that window the night of the murder. So they decided to believe John's story, which means that for them either the window had been repaired or the condition of the glass had been misinterpreted by the techs who examined it.

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  53. Well, I agree, if they'd confirmed it, then there would be no need for further questioning.

    I suppose if it's only confirmed by JAR/BR then there is the possibility of lying to protect JR. If it was confirmed by anyone else, there would be no more questions about it..

    It seems likely the story was never confirmed by anyone outside the family.

    CH

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    1. I just finished Dr. Wecht's book. His theory, although hard to swallow because of the sick nature of death that he suggests, it is very, very convincing based on Wecht's impeccable medical analyzation and explanation (in layman's terms, thank goodness) of the autopsy report. HOWEVER, the one point I have trouble with it this: if JR had accidentally tightened the cord too tight during his sex game causing JBR to lose consciousness and he then tried to revive her by shaking her (which Dr. Wecht believes happened because of brain swelling caused by "shaken baby" syndrome), why wouldn't JR have FIRST loosened the cord around her neck?? You would think he would do that before trying to shake her awake. And once he realized she was not going to regain consciousness, what would the point of the head blow be? If he had accidentally killed her during the strangulation, you would think he would be terribly distraught and panicked and would not be able to carry out the head blow. As hard as it is to believe that JR was getting off on this sex game, it is almost harder for me to believe that he would have felt the need to finish her off with a tremendous blow to the head. Why wouldn't he just leave her at that point, letting the garrote suggest she was simply strangled by an intruder? In other words, I can't see JR "overkilling" his daughter, especially if her death was accidental in the first place.

      So with all due respect to Dr. Wecht, I still lean toward's Doc's theory: the head blow came first. I believe such a powerful blow could only have happened after he went into a fit of panicked rage. Once done, however, I think JR felt the need to make it look like she was murdered by some deranged psychopath and he had to stage the scene by garroting her. I just cannot buy the EA theory. I realize that some people are actually into that sort of thing, but as far as I know, it is done by both persons consenting to it and both persons getting some sexual gratification from it.

      Aside from the cause of death, Wecht's book also goes into great detail about the major mistakes and blunders made by the Boulder Police and its detectives. Without a doubt, this case was totally compromised because of their incredible errors, and I am convinced that this case will never be solved, unless, of course, Burke witnessed something that night that he would only reveal after his dad's death (perhaps he woke during the night and heard his dad talking to JBR or, worse yet, saw his dad "writing something" downstairs)

      bb

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    2. I agree about everything but the staging. I think the strangulation was part of the attack, to make sure she was dead.

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  54. Something else to consider as a possible explanation, as to why there is, both, an asphyxiation and skull fracture is the process of death, itself. It can be rapid, or it can also be quite lengthy. It can be loud. There can be death sounds. They can be tough to stomach. There can be moderate to severe body movements, as the oxygen escapes the brain and brain death sets in. The body can thrash. The body can twitch. The body can repetitively make violent movements, as it attempts to go into the fetal position. This is all a natural process. Nothing about it looks or sounds natural. Low-pitched death gurgling and gasping sounds from strangulation or asphyxiation deaths sound rather ominous and can be heard from down a hallway. It should not be assumed that the sight or sounds of death are something you ever become familiar with or know how to handle. Each can be alarming.The erotic asphyxiation would be obvious to a medical examiner, due to the nature of the body. There is a garrote around the neck. There is virtually a complete absence of blood on the victim. The sexual nature is not obvious or brutal. It is possible that when JBR lost consciousness from the asphyxiation, she simply never regained from "passing out." He may have even shaken her to wake her. When the lungs attempted to begin receiving oxygen, the ominous death gasps and gurgles from choking began, due to the blocked airway. The unpleasant body fits and sounds of death may have alerted the formal U.S. Navy Officer. He may have known, in an instant, that death was imminent. It may have been the act of a panicked man, familiar with the stages of death, horrified and desperate to make the the sights and sounds stop. I do not feel a panicked man would have realistically taken the time to, then, construct a garrote. It may have been over very soon. An immediately accessible item was grabbed, and a blunt force trauma would have been the fastest way to end the uncomfortable sight of death. If someone has already hit someone over the head, and at some point they realize that the hit to the head is lethal, so you need to cause death to "end it" why not just stay par for the course, and hit them over the head a second time? Coupled with the absence of any response from the body to a skull injury, I must agree with Dr. Wecht that the head bash came last, at or near the time of death.

    -H

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    1. The "garrote" could not have been constructed while JBR was alive and conscious. Tufts of her hair were found embedded in the knotting of this device, which means it must have been constructed right on top of her, and if she'd been conscious she'd have been screaming bloody murder and struggling very hard, which would have made it impossible to tie those very neatly contrived knots. The only sequence of events that makes sense is first the blow to the head, probably very sudden from behind, so she never knew what or who hit her. Then the construction of the "garotte," possibly much later, by someone in a great panic. It's possible that after the head blow he strangled her by hand and then realized that the police might be able to lift his prints from her neck. So possibly the purpose of the garotte was to misdirect away from manual strangulation.

      This was an oversight on Wecht's part, and believe me, I have no interest in challenging his expertise, but the hair entwined in the knots is something he never seems to have considered.

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  55. Interesting observations, H. I tend to agree with you and Dr. Wecht.

    To CH, thank you, but there's no need to make it clear that JB was asphyxiated. We both acknowledge she was asphyxiated. Neither of us ever said otherwise.

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  56. (Kikigirl) - Just got Steve Thomas' book and began reading it. Even Steve's observations about John show him to be involved in the murder of his child. Even if Steve believes Patsy was responsible for the original blow, John does not appear clueless.
    On pg. 18 John is described as calm and composed on the morning of Dec. 26th, whereas Patsy is emotional and hysterical.
    p.25 John had little to say about the ransom note, whereas everyone else seemed to show a lot more interest in it. Seems logical that John would want to distance himself from the note, knowing he masterminded it.
    It's odd that Patsy, after looking at a dark xerox copy of the note, stated it looked like it was written on her notepad. Even the cops didn't see it off the copy cuz it was of bad quality.
    Also, JonBenet's note to her father in a greeting card, where she wrote "The best gift I can give is me," has to mean something. pg. 44

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    1. Also, JonBenet's note to her father in a greeting card, where she wrote "The best gift I can give is me," has to mean something. pg. 44

      What five or six year old child writes those words? I could see her saying it if she has heard it, probably from her mother or grandmother, but to write it? Very odd.

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    2. I am not a big believer in PR not being knowledgeable of the events taken place the night of the murder. I doubt a woman who had to take her daughter to the pediatrician as much as she did to tend to her daughter's vaginal issues and then discovered after her daughter was murdered by an "intruder" and the autopsy report revealed her daughter was molested on a continual basis, would not start to ask questions. What woman would not sit there and put two and two together and at least consider the fact that someone in the house was molesting her daughter? How come it is common knowledge from the autopsy report that JBR was routinely molested but this information all but drops from any questioning? No reporter ever asks the Ramsey's about the molestation findings in the autopsy. They are never asked about the connection to the multiple doctor visits and molestation. I know there are laws protecting health issues, but I would think those laws would be off the table when it comes to a murder investigation and the question over whether or not her parents were involved.

      This is why the BR theory is so popular. I know many don't believe it but BR's aggression towards his sister is MUCH more evident than anyone else's - including JR. BR hit his sister with a golf club. His feces had been spread around the house. He has a lot of suffering in his life at an early age....his older sister dies when he is five years old, his mother gets ovarian cancer and goes through chemo, his father may or may not be molesting his younger sister. His father was working and traveling so he didn't have a lot time him and his mother was doting on his younger sister and away with her during her pagents. He was practically left all alone. Did BR get any psychological help during these difficult years with the death of his sister and his mother's cancer? It is highly possible BR took all his aggression out on his sister, after all she was in his mind taking his dying mother away from him. I also find the sexual molestation from BR to be plausible as molestation from grown men would most likely be more than digital penetration. I also think JBR would be exhibiting more disturbing emotional signs if the molestation was from her father....perhaps she didn't feel threatened by her brother and looked at his touching her as exploration and kid play. BR apparently did get anxious when asked questions of a sexual nature but not when discussing his sibling's death. It is possible that the parents protected BR...knowing all he had gone though in his young life and fearing they were the cause of his emotional problems. Maybe PR would not be able to handle losing her only other child and perhaps they feared the repercussions of having their one remaining son together be known as a killer all his life - not only for BR but for their own social standing. You would not believe what people do to keep their reputation and social standing in tact - especially people with the influence and ability to control information.

      Has anyone thought that the pediatrician that was called over in the morning of JBR's death was not for PR but for BR? Maybe BR was slightly sedated so not to be able to be too chatty with police and detectives?

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    3. This is also why the Ramseys might have told the police that BR just woke up, even though there was evidence that he was awake during the 911 call....it would explain his groggy, just woken up behavior. Or maybe he was sedated into sleep so the Ramsey's could finish the staging and not have BR be in the way or know what they were doing.

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    4. (kikigirl) Good point about possibly sedating Burke for the night after such a traumatic event occurred on the night of the 25th. I too thought Burke's behavior suspicious all along.
      The kids sometimes slept in one room, Burke's room, and Jonbenet had two beds in her room as well, so it is quite possible for inappropriate kid play to have taken place. I also thought that's why Jonbenet didn't speak out about any inappropriate touching, since it was from Burke.
      But the garroting and suffocation on John's part is just horrendous. How could he do that to his own little girl, even if found unconscious from a blow to the head? Unless Burke hit her and left her alone for some time and after seeing she didn't come to, he called his father for help. Dad gave him sedatives to keep calm and sleep and brainstormed the coverup.

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    5. @ kikigirl - well I would suspect that there was a reason for the kids' doctor to be called over to the house the morning the note was found. I guess it is possible that the Ramsey's gave BR something that night but I think their MO was to keep BR from properly talking to the police/detectives they knew were inevitably going to be interviewing him.

      I believe it has been said the pediatrition was a friend of the family but it doesn't really matter. Someone should have looked into the fact JBR had multiple visits for vaginal issues and then it was found through autopsy that she had digital penetration the day she died and evidence of previous vaginal trauma. How come no one discussed that with the Ramsey's in interviews? How is it believed that PR, a seemingly intelligent woman, would overlook such a finding and not correlate it to all the doctor visits she took her daughter? For those who say PR is completely innocent, then I'd like for them to provide some thought into how a mother would overlook that and not merely lean on the belief that JR sedated PR and explained everything away. If you are going to assume JR explained everything away and intimidated PR then assume she wasn't intimated by her husband and did in fact have a daughter who reports determined was molested and a daughter she took to the doctor for vaginal issues more than a handful of time.

      Is it also possible that JBR did the penetration herself? She was under a lot of pressure due to the pagents and had her mother's illness to grapple.

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    6. "Someone should have looked into the fact JBR had multiple visits for vaginal issues and then it was found through autopsy that she had digital penetration the day she died and evidence of previous vaginal trauma. How come no one discussed that with the Ramsey's in interviews?"

      Actually Patsy was asked about the evidence of prior abuse during one of her police interviews. She acted very surprised and when asked if it disturbed her, said that yes it certainly disturbed her very much. Amazingly, however, the interviewers didn't seem interested in the possibility that John might have been responsible, so never followed up on that with her at all. They went on to question her about whether she herself had ever been abused, which she denied. Very frustrating to read these interviews and see how many times the interrogators dropped the ball. They just had no interest in John at that point, all the focus was on Patsy.

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    7. The issue is not whom the reporters or police asked, but the fact it was not asked enough. The multiple doctor visits for vaginal issues and evidence in the autopsy report are huge red flags and I think it shows some degree of cover up given that no one focused on this enough in interviews. Of course PR is going to say she is surprised, what....is she going to admit to knowing her daughter was being abused? Quite frankly, how could no one focus on the prior vaginal abuse? No reporter? One police interview? A little girl dies in her home and has evidence of vaginal penetration and multiple doctor visits for said vaginal issues and NO ONE brings this up? I wonder if the Ramsey's had their lawyers not allow reporters to ask questions pertaining to JBR's health due to HIPAA laws (not even sure HIPAA laws were around back then). There had to be a reason this topic was off the table.

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  57. (kikigirl) The Ramsey lawyers pulled it off quite well. How sad and frustrating that the victim in all of this did not get justice. I always knew that the Ramseys' "island of privacy" where they withheld medical records shows undisputedly that they had something to hide. There was no kidnapper, someone in that house harmed Jonbenet, most likely John, but I don't think Burke is a wholesome good boy either. And it's a shame that both enjoy the free life and have gone unpunished. Patsy, on the other hand, if knew secrets she wasn't willing to spill in her lifetime, is now gone. I guess the turmoil was festering inside of her long enough to fall ill again and meet her end.

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  58. (kikigirl) Another case that I find is very similar to this one, and no one in the family has been held accountable, is the case of the McCanns in England. Madeleine, I believe, was killed by one of the parents, possibly by accident. No one has been held responsible for that tragedy as well. I see the McCanns as a British version of the Ramseys.

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  59. For what it's worth, from what I was able to find, the new revelation that JR used the flashlight to take BR up to bed, came from a statement made by Dr. Phil. It didn't come directly from JR. Admittedly, I didn't watch all 3 parts of BR's interview in their entirety, so if I am mistaken, someone please correct me. Here is a link to part of the Dr. Phil interview:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4eagUvTdkCM

    Around the 5:25 mark, Dr. Phil says, "I think your dad had said he used the flashlight that night to put you to bed..." BR neither confirms or denies this. Also, when asked if BR used the flashlight when he went back downstairs to play with his toy, BR says he doesn't remember.

    In the complaint filed against Spitz, it is stated that BR agreed to the Dr. Phil interview because he was aware that the investigators in CBS docuseries planned to accuse him. (I'm paraphrasing what is actually stated in the complaint, but that's the gist.)

    It makes me wonder if the new flashlight information was introduced to muddy the waters about the use of the flashlight that night. I'm assuming that neither BR, JR or LW knew exactly what evidence the docuseries planned to reveal, so maybe the flashlight revelation was kind of a preemptive strike to cover BR.

    It's interesting, to me, that Dr. Phil is the one who makes the statement. It's also interesting that BR doesn't confirm nor deny it. Also, I would think that Lin Wood would have pre-negotiated the power to veto any inaccurate statements, before the show was finalized and shown to the public. This is just speculation on my part, but wouldn't any decent attorney protect his clients by doing so? I just find it curious that Dr. Phil is "allowed" to make that statement, but it doesn't come directly from JR or BR. Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but just thought I'd throw it out there.

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    1. Yes, HKH, you make an excellent point. Not sure why you decided to post it here though. I'd appreciate it if you'd repost in on the most recent thread, because most of the others reading here probably won't see it.

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    2. LOL. Thanks, Doc. That's where I thought I had posted it. I'll remove it and repost it there. Sorry about that.

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    3. I reposted my comment, but I'm not sure how to remove the one above.

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