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.

Monday, March 6, 2017

"Things to Come" -- Announcing a New Blog

Sorry for the off-topic post, but I can't resist advertising my new blog, and inviting everyone reading here to check it out -- and, hopefully, get involved by commenting and contributing ideas of your own. As you might have guessed, DocG is never at a loss for ideas, and new ideas for future developments is what my new blog is all about. New products, new scientific theories, new forms of personal expression, new approaches to old problems. In short (and with apologies to HG Wells -- and George Pal): some predictions of Things to Come.

Rest assured, I won't be neglecting this blog, but the Ramsey case is only one of many things I've had on my mind and at this point I'm ready to expand my horizons by looking to the future. Hope you are too.

(Feel free to continue posting Ramsey case comments below.)

75 comments:

  1. This new blog sounds like a lot of fun. I belong to many science related Facebook groups, it's my favourite subject - even more so than crime solving! I'm looking forward to seeing what it brings. Thanks, Doc :)

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  2. I'm transfixed by that picture. It reminds me of Area 51, or something out of Stranger in a Strange Land

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    1. It's Death Valley. Looks like it might have been taken with a fish eye lens. The halo of light at the horizon must be the Milky Way. I chose it because I find it quite beautiful and also because to me it suggests the future as a mysterious horizon.

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  3. Doc G, what is your theory about the West Memphis Three?
    Do you think any of the three released were involved?
    This case along with JonBenet are two that I really want to be solved in my lifetime.
    Kat

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    1. I remember reading about that case some time ago. What I've learned from my involvement with the Ramsey case is that it's usually a mistake to draw conclusions before learning all the details. And since I just don't have the time to involve myself very deeply in a case that looks to be so complicated I won't offer an opinion.

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    2. I've been very interested in the West Memphis Three case since the crime occurred. It is patently obvious that the boys had nothing to do with the murders, and that Terry Hobbs, along with an accomplice, killed the three boys.

      Here's why:

      1. Regarding Jesse's "confession", he said that the murders occurred in the daytime when they actually occurred at night. He claimed they tied up the boys with rope when the actual murderer used shoelaces.
      2. DNA found at the crime scene was retested, and NONE was found to match the DNA of Echols, Baldwin, or Misskelley.
      3.A significant piece of DNA evidence found at the crime scene, DNA in a hair found in one of the shoelaces used to tie up the boys, matched the DNA of Hobbs, along with that of a second hair found on a tree stump near where the bodies were found matched that of David Jacoby, a friend of Hobbs.
      4. Hobbs had a long history of abuse, including an admitted assault on his wife and accusations of child beating and assaults on neighbors.
      5. An aunt of Stevie Branch, Jo Lynn McAughey, alleged that she saw Hobbs doing laundry the night of the murders, presumably to clean the mud off of his clothes after killing the boys in the woods.
      6. A prized pocket knife owned by Stevie, one he almost always carried with him, was later found among Terry Hobbs's possessions.
      7. Three young men who claimed to have been told by a nephew of Terry Hobbs that the fact that Terry killed the three boys was a closely guarded "family secret."

      Of course Terry Hobbs killed the boys, I don't even know why it's still an issue.

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    3. http://wreg.com/2013/03/27/new-details-in-new-affidavits-about-west-memphis-murders/

      https://thewestmemphispuzzle.com/

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  5. Doc, I have some pretty far out ideas myself, but more in the arena of "services" provided rather than tangible goods. So I'm not sure I would be able to comment for instance on your Retro car lacking the necessary technical skills to discuss whether it would be plausible or not. However I've always thought that it would be far safer if we traveled off the ground - a la "Jetson's." There would be no more need to repair our roads but instead a different kind of navigational system would have to be constructed, air traffic, if you will, where perhaps we could get to destinations faster and somehow avoid all of the annoying ground congestion. Let the semi's take over the roads, they do now anyway. One semi takes up approx. 3 SUV car lengths. They rarely stay in the far right lane but instead wedge cars in between them by using far right lanes and middle lanes, when a car wishes to exit or merge. It is the semi's that are tearing up the asphalt as well.

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    1. Actually the notion of an autonomous flying car is more viable than a self-driving land-based car because you wouldn't need to worry about pedestrians, potholes, red lights, loss of GPS signal due to nearby buildings, etc. Each vehicle could be programmed to steer clear of all the others and also to avoid buildings. The only problem would be the need for constant maintenance, which would be too expensive for the average family.

      If you have ideas like that you should post them on the new blog.

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    2. Oh thanks! I've thought this for a long long time. The cars would be very small of course but if they are jet fueled I'd have to figure out other details. The trend is electric of course, now. There would be the issue of stop signs, how those would be attached and to what. I'll do some thinking on this but yes, I'll go to the new blog.

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  6. The West Memphis Three case is not complicated whatsoever. For a brief period of time I was professionally involved in accessing the behavior of three young men who were eventually convicted of the murders. Based on the evidence and facts alone I was and still am convinced of their guilt. HBO swooped quickly onto the scene and for the most part successfully manipulated viewers into believing the police had made the mistake of unjustly profiling three innocent teenagers. Many facts were conveniently omitted by the HBO producers. This type of propaganda has been repeated with other documentaries such as "Making A Murderer". I find it to be sickening and a terrible injustice that Echols, Baldwin, and Misskelley were granted release by way of the Alford Plea.

    Hercule

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  7. I think a lot about how to improve small scale bothersome things. A big one for me is fitted sheets and mattress pads. You can read all types of recommendations as to what brands to buy, devices to use (e.g. safety pins, Velcro strips) and methods to "fold" and "tuck", to keep the damn things on and prevent them from bunching up, but no one method for these items has been custom manufactured to be used perhaps be used in conjunction with a "modified" mattress. What about "male" snaps on sheet/mattress pad edges inserted into
    factory-attached "female snaps" on mattresses? Or maybe draw strings or bungee cords could be part of a new architecture.

    Better still, what about a bed designed to make itself?

    Mike G.

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    1. Hey, Mike, I hear you! I'm an active sleeper so my bed is a mess every morning. And yes, the fitted sheet always wanders, along with the mattress cover. There's got to be a better way. The idea of snaps to hold things in place sounds great. You should post that on my new blog.

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    2. Just a comment here - what kind of fitted sheets and mattress covers are you guys buying? Mine stay put. Depends on the elastic!

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    3. What brand of sheets do you use? I'll run out and buy some. I HATE making the bed.

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    4. Pure Beech modal sateen sheets - for silky softness, the higher the thread count the better. They also make the jersey knit sheets, which "cling" and thus may cling to the underside of your mattress if you are given to thrashing. I just find them hot, but they are silky smooth and soft and wrinkle, as do all sheets, but don't undo themselves.

      Also I have a very thick extra firm mattress which sits on a Haiku platform. I do not need a box springs. It could be having a mattress sitting atop a box springs could contribute to "slippage" so there may be other factors that contribute to your fitted sheet moving around. But that's my suggestion - Pure Beech, which can be found in any Bed Bath and Beyond, and then select your texture. Sweet dreams y'all.

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  8. "Of course Terry Hobbs killed the boys, I don't even know why it's still an issue."

    You have been terribly mislead as have so many others. The facts of the case are overwhelmingly in favor of Echols, Baldwin, and Misskelley as being the murderers.

    Jessie Misskelley confessed that he along with Echols and Baldwin committed the murders on 9 documented occasions. In fact, Misskelley put his hand on a Bible and swore to his attorney, Dan Stidham, that he, Damien, and Jason committed the murders. Further, he told Stidham that he was drunk on Evan Williams whiskey during the murders and the broken bottle could be found where he threw it on the ground under a bridge in West Memphis on his way home from the crime scene. Stidham told prosecutors he would believe his client's confession if he could find that bottle. So Stidham, WMPD Inspector Gary Gitchell, and the prosecutors drove to West Memphis to look for it. They found a broken Evan Williams bottle in the exact area that Stidham indicated Jessie said it would be. According to Prosecutor John Fogleman, Stidham directed the group to search the I-40 underpass nearest to Wal-Mart (near the current sight of Kroger), and the men found the broken bottle in that location. Further corroborating this story is the fact that Jessie mentioned in this 2/8/94 confession that Vicki Hutcheson was the one who bought him Evan Williams whiskey on the day of the murders. When the attorneys called Hutcheson she confirmed that she did, indeed, buy Jessie a bottle of Evan Williams on the day of the murders.

    Hercule

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  9. "Jessie Misskelley confessed that he along with Echols and Baldwin committed the murders on 9 documented occasions."

    Jessie Misskellely's confessions also contained demonstrably false statements, Hercule. If Jesse took part in the murders, he'd have known shoelaces were used, as opposed to rope. He'd also have known at what time the murders occurred. He didn't, therefore I don't buy his "confession" as genuine. He was interrogated for fourteen hours without food, water or bathroom breaks. He has an IQ of under a hundred. How many times have we seen false confessions uttered under such duress? It's not terribly uncommon.

    However.....if you want to take Jesse's confessions as proof of guilt, what then do you make of the confession of the witness who said that Hobbs and Jacoby invited the two teenagers to meet with them to buy drugs, that the men were smoking pot when they saw the three boys spying on them, Jacoby grabbed one of the boys and beat him while Hobbs ordered Lucas and Hollingsworth to grab and hold the other two boys, Hobbs then killed the boys with a pocket knife and mutilated their bodies, according to his affidavit.
    His entire statement is consistent with the evidence, unlike Misskelley's, so are we to ignore it?

    "In fact, Misskelley put his hand on a Bible and swore to his attorney, Dan Stidham, that he, Damien, and Jason committed the murders."

    So what? Since when does swearing on a Bible prove anything? Does the boy even believe in God? Not sure what your point is here....we've already established why his alleged confession isn't reliable.

    The broken bottle is circumstantial. That Jessie had been drinking in the woods at some point isn't evidence he was involved in the murders.
    Terry Hobbs and David Jacoby's DNA recovered in the knots of the shoelaces are irrefutable, physical evidence, however!

    But, if circumstantial evidence is enough to convince you, what do you make of Terry Hobbs ex-wife's family who said that he had "a fraught, almost jealous relationship with Stevie, who was fearful of his stepfather."?
    On it's own, that may not mean much, but coupled with the fact that his hair was found in the knot, his history of violence, and at least one witnesses who claims he murdered the boys.....it's pretty damning, don't you think?

    Vicki Hutcheson, who had played a part in the arrests of Misskelley, Echols, and Baldwin, gave an interview to the Arkansas Times in which she stated that every word she had given to the police was a fabrication. She further asserted that the police had implied that if she did not cooperate with them they would take away her child. She said that when she visited the police station, employees had photographs of Echols, Baldwin, and Misskelley on the wall and were using them as dart targets. She also claims that an audiotape the police said was "unintelligible" (and that they eventually lost) was perfectly clear and contained no incriminating statements.
    Are we to ignore her claims also?

    If the above is all the evidence you have, then it's beyond weak, I'm sorry.

    Unfortunately, the video of the interrogation that clearly shows Terry Hobbs as the chronic liar and killer he is, has had the sound removed. There's no denying who murdered the boys after listening to that tape.

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    1. That is not even close to all of the evidence against them. I was merely scratching the surface. If you need more, I can certainly oblige, but I do not have the time to post it all in one night. I will give you more tomorrow.

      Hercule

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    2. Thanks, Hercule, but I've been reading more about the case for the past several hours, and I'm still not convinced.
      How do you explain the fact that Hobbs and Jacoby's DNA was found inside the knot used to hog tie the boys, whilst not a shred of any of the accused boys DNA was recovered?

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  10. Off topic, not related to anything but nature. The famous Azure Window in Malta is no more. The sea claimed the beautiful rock formation.

    http://www.timesofmalta.com/mobile/articles/view/20170308/local/the-azure-window-lost-and-gone-forever.641810

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  11. "How do you explain the fact that Hobbs and Jacoby's DNA was found inside the knot used to hog tie the boys, whilst not a shred of any of the accused boys DNA was recovered?"

    This "DNA" is actually a hair fragment found on a shoestring used to hog tie Michael Moore. The defense often says the hair was "tied into" the shoestring. But there are currently no publicly available photographs or documents to prove that claim.

    Experts paid by the WM3 defense team claim that they determined through lab tests that Terry Hobbs is a "possible source" of that hair. Problem is, 1.5% of the rest of the population is also a "possible source" of that hair. That means that more than 4.5 MILLION Americans are also "possible sources" of that hair. In addition, Michael Moore frequently visited the Hobbs home. The hair could have easily landed on Moore's shoestring through secondary transfer as he played there. The hair is meaningless and will never lead to the conviction of Terry Hobbs.

    Paid defense experts also report that a second hair found on a tree stump near the crime scene weeks after the murders could have come from Hobbs' friend, David Jacoby. But it also could have come from 7% of the rest of the population. A whopping 21 MILLION Americans are also possible owners of the hair found on the tree stump. The “Jacoby hair” is completely meaningless as evidence in court.

    The WM3's own hired expert called the hairs "weak evidence" during a 2007 press conference. How the hairs have suddenly become "strong evidence" in West of Memphis is beyond explanation:

    "The two hairs that I know about – the one that could have in fact come from Mr. Hobbs and the one that could have in fact come from David Jacoby – constitute what I call weak evidence. Because there are other people it could have come from and there isn’t any way to really prove our selection of possible sources for that hair. I don’t think – my personal opinion – I don’t think that that hair evidence would be enough to convict Mr. Hobbs or Mr. Jacoby or anyone that would be in a similar situation because it’s simply not strong enough. The percentages I gave of people who could be the source of those hairs are 1.5% of the population in the respect to one hair and 7% in respect to the other hair. That’s not particularly strong evidence and especially in the context of what most people are accustomed to with DNA testing." - Thomas Fedor, Forensic Serologist.

    To be cont...

    Hercule

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  12. ...cont:

    So where were Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin, and Jessie Misskelley for four to five hours that happen to coincide with the time of the murders? Well we don’t know. Damien told Jennifer that Jason’s mom had driven them somewhere… which was a lie because she was at work until 11pm. It’s strange that he can’t come up with an alibi that holds up isn’t it? Surely if he’s innocent, he just needs to tell us where he was? So why doesn’t he?

    Jessie Misskelley has no alibi either. I know, you’re about to say he was in a karate tournament, but he wasn’t. The so-called photos depict a different event a month prior, and the “witnesses” all gave conflicting testimony. This alibi only emerged after a previous alibi (he was at a party with 12 other people) fell apart.

    Jason Baldwin has no alibi. After an attempt to get his brother and a friend (Ken Watkins) to lie for him, he stopped trying to construct one; to the point that in 2008 his lawyer stood up in court and said he couldn’t find a reliable alibi witness for Jason. It’s really weird that three totally innocent men all tried to fabricate alibis for the same period of time that just happens to correspond with a murder they’re suspected of. Really weird that.

    Blue wax found on the bodies matched wax found in Damien’s room and a candle belonging to his girlfriend.

    The Knife – multiple people testified it was Damien’s knife, including his ex-girlfriend Deanna Holcomb. She said Damien’s knife stood out because it had a compass, and the knife manufacturer testified that the knife found was missing a compass.

    The so called “bitemark” on Stevie Branch perfectly matches the diameter of the compass slot, complete with central wound for the pin. It’s shocking that an innocent man’s knife would match not just the knife wounds, but other contusions on the body too.

    A necklace was found (too late to be included in trial evidence) in Damien’s possession that was covered with blood. Tests proved that the DNA on it was consistent with Damien, Jason and…Stevie Branch.

    The three boys were tied with three, distinct, unique knots. This usually points to three distinct killers and is almost unheard of in cases involving just one suspect.

    Paradise Lost claims “there was no blood at the crime scene” which is… wrong. Completely. “It lit up like a Christmas tree...there was a lot of blood there”.

    Damien was seen, by a family that knew him very well near the crime scene on the night of the murders. The Hollingsworth Family, who correctly described Damien’s clothes, thought they saw him with his girlfriend. They have never retracted this statement and gained nothing by coming forward, except to have their credibility attacked again and again by WM3 researchers looking to discount their sighting. Despite this, one of the key reasons Narlene Hollingsworth was called to testify was her reputation for brutal honesty, even when it came to her own children.

    Green fibers found at the crime scene matched a shirt in Damien’s home. Red fibers that the police suspected were from a bathrobe in Misskelley’s home but stressed that they couldn’t match them, were retested by the defense in 2008 and found not to match. It’s odd that they would retest the fibers known to not be a match, but not the ones that were a match, isn’t it? What’s even odder is that they neglected to mention that owing to evidence decay, most crime labs refused to retest for the defense, saying that after all this time they would have decayed too much and that “any findings, would be deeply suspect – no matter which side they favored”. Odd that they forgot to mention this.

    Hercule

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    1. Hercule, I hope you're feeling better as you spoke of being unwell awhile back. Why would the hair in the knot be brought to question if it is of little value in supporting guilt or innocence? As for your theory on jonbenet, I am aware you are Pdi, but can't recall if your theory involved Jr in the cover up? And how do you stand on prior sexual abuse, if you don't mind reminding me thanks.

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    2. "Problem is, 1.5% of the rest of the population is also a "possible source" of that hair. That means that more than 4.5 MILLION Americans are also "possible sources" of that hair."

      Indeed. But the other 4.5 million possible sources of the hair didn't have a motive to murder the boys, nor were they named as the boys killer by several witnesses, who I will mention later in my post. The hair recovered matched the hair of a person who - coincidentally - happened to be related to one of the victims, and - coincidentally - had a history of abuse towards said victim.
      Then there's the claim made by Judy Sadler, Stevie's aunt, who claimed Hobbs would make Stevie watch him masturbate, and that he also molested Stevie's sister, Amanda (admittedly - Amanda herself hasn't made this claim).

      "Blue wax found on the bodies matched wax found in Damien’s room and a candle belonging to his girlfriend."

      Not quite. What "appeared to be blue candle wax" was found on a book in Echols' bedroom. A blue candle was also found in his girlfriend's bedroom. "It was *never proven* that the waxes matched, but this strange coincidence was mentioned in the prosecution's closing argument."

      "The so called “bite mark” on Stevie Branch perfectly matches the diameter of the compass slot, complete with central wound for the pin. It’s shocking that an innocent man’s knife would match not just the knife wounds, but other contusions on the body too."

      The knife found in the lake was missing a compass that "may" have had a metal pin. The wounds "may have been" inflicted with said knife. I've heard other viable scenarios.

      "A necklace was found (too late to be included in trial evidence) in Damien’s possession that was covered with blood. Tests proved that the DNA on it was consistent with Damien, Jason and…Stevie Branch."

      Prosecutors claimed the sample was used up in the original testing, so the blood on the necklace cannot be re-tested, therefore I'm not sure how reliable this piece of evidence is. I'm going to look into it further before commenting.

      Curtis Gott and Christian Sisk, friends of Terry Hobbs' nephew, Mike Hobbs Jr. claimed that Mike told them his uncle, Terry Hobbs, was involved in the murders.

      In March 2013 two Crittenden County, Arkansas men, Billy Wayne Stewart and Bennie David Guy, gave sworn statements that alleged that Terry Hobbs, David Jacoby, L.G. Hollingsworth, and Buddy Lucas killed Christopher Byers, Michael Moore and Stevie Branch. Stewart and Guy claimed to have information that the murders happened after the boys stumbled upon Hobbs and the other men as they did drugs in the woods.


      I'm just not convinced, but I'm committed to doing more research on the case, Hercule.

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  13. Hi evej. Thank you for your nice comment. I am doing well enough to continue working as a consultant. I still travel quite a bit and the long hours can be challenging at times.

    The hair in the knot should of course be questioned, and those questions have been answered. Unfortunately, there are others that are so convinced that Hobbs and Jacoby are the murderers that they continually ignore vital facts.

    In regards to your questions about the Ramsey case, I'll give you my answers later tonight.

    Hercule

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  14. Charlie Brennan article today on court case
    http://www.dailycamera.com/news/jonbenet-ramsey/ci_30846394/cbs-seeks-dismissal-750m-defamation-suit-brought-by?source=rss

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    1. Thanks, Lil. Ok, so finally we get CBS's official response. They chose not to contest any of Wood's specific charges but simply to deny that anything said was more than just an opinion, which is, of course, protected by the 1st Amendment. I'm not a lawyer, so I won't claim to understand the legalities of the lawsuit, but based on what I saw, if I were the judge I would reject such a defense. While I don't recall if anyone actually said they knew for sure that Burke struck the blow that disabled his sister, the whole tenor of the last portion of the program was based on the assumption, stated or unstated, that he did do precisely that. Aside from the intruder theory, no other scenario was seriously considered.

      The disclaimer at the end was simply pro forma and imo not sufficient to absolve the network from the responsibility of airing such a program. What do you think, CC?

      By the way, I have a feeling Burke would be relieved if both lawsuits were thrown out of court, because if either goes on trial he would be expected to testify and respond to some pretty tough questions, not only about the pineapple, which would be easy to answer, but about exactly what he knew about what went on in the house that night. I feel sure he's hiding something, probably to protect his father, and a trial might just force him to reveal some of the secrets of this case. John's association with the Maglite is one example, but I suspect there's more.

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    2. Doc...I had the same two thoughts; that Burke might be relieved if the case is dismissed and that he's hiding things. In particular, I think he knows his father has lied about the broken window. I'm developing a theory on that, which I'll post if it fully crystallizes and I think it makes sense. I've been meaning to review the transcript of his interview with Dr. Phil, and what he said exactly about being with his father when he (John) broke into the house, but I needed a break from the case.

      I'll be curious to hear what CC has to say. I wonder if a "mutual" agreement to dismiss can be made behind closed doors so that neither side can appear to be caving to the other. That would be a shame for justice and might, in all likelihood, drive the last nail into any hope it may one day be served.

      Mike G.

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    3. A disclaimer does not absolve CBS of responsibility. A large part of their problem is that their show was touted as a documentary, or "docuseries", I believe they called it - a presentation of facts - and that will be hard to overcome.

      Burke's lawsuit is an example of defamation per se rather than defamation per quod, meaning that the damages are obvious on their face, and assumed: The show and its presenters essentially accused Burke of a criminal act, and the burden of proof is theirs.

      The First Amendment is always raised as a defense to defamation, but one's right to freedom of speech stops at the point it damages someone. CBS and its co-defendants have big problems, imo.

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    4. Mike G

      CC: I had Burke and Wood in mind as the disclaimers, not so as to relieve CBS of its responsibility, but to negotiate a settlement that reconciles individual party interests suddenly deviating from those originally purported, understood, or acted upon. For example: Wood senses that CBS wants out, not just to avoid suffering punitive damages, but because it is gradually dawning upon them that neither Burke, Patsy, nor an intruder committed the crime. So Wood attempts a gambit:

      "Look, the outcome in this case doesn't bode well for you financially, or for me as council representing non-intruder suspects in this case. While our interests in obviating respective predicaments differ, our desire to minimize public speculation in regard to these matters doesn't. And though I have the option to recuse myself, I'd prefer not to. Therefore, I propose we settle for the sum of one dollar, and that said settlement be sealed along with all evidence heretofore sealed, those portions made public through discovery notwithstanding."

      Obviously, if CBS accepted Wood's gambit, both sides would be behaving in a highly unethical manner. But would their behavior, and/or the settlement itself, be legal? Does a judge preside over settlement negotiations or does he just give settlements negotiated his rubber stamp?



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    5. The disclaimer Doc is referring to is a statement intended to limit the scope of one's responsibility, like a sign at the beach: "No lifeguard on duty - swim at your own risk." In this case, CBS inserted one at the end of each segment of the show stating the case is unsolved, viewers should reach their own conclusions.

      I see nothing unethical in your scenario, it's merely a settlement offer, though I find it unlikely in the extreme that one will be reached for less than millions. In my view that poorly drawn, rambling, repetitive complaint was written for that purpose rather than as a basis to try a case - a legal no no, btw; never bring a case you're not prepared to try.

      The products of discovery are not made public unless they become a part of the trial - should a witness die, for example, his deposition can be read into the trial record in lieu of his direct testimony. Or unless they're leaked, of course.

      Settlement negotiations are conducted by the parties' attorneys behind closed doors, though a judge may, at any point, direct them to attempt to settle rather than proceed to trial or continue with a trial, as the case may be, he does not involve himself in those conversations.

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    6. Given the 1st amendment defense offered by CBS I have a sinking feeling their lawyers may have no intention of defending the basic premise of the series (i.e., that Burke bludgeoned his sister) in a trial setting, but are banking on the judge agreeing that the accusations against Burke were offered "only" as opinions and not facts. If the judge agrees, then that could be that -- and the case would be closed.

      If the judge does not agree, then that could also be the end of it, and all that would remain would be a determination of the amount owed the plaintiff.

      Could it be that simple, CC? Or do you think CBS would then decide to argue that the theory presented in the series actually did solve the case, and that Burke did in fact fatally injure his sister. I seriously doubt they would take that tactic, because, as I'm sure you agree, there is no real evidence, not to mention proof, that Burke had anything at all to do with his sister's murder. They would have to respond to each and every point in Wood's long "complaint" and hope that the judge (or jury) would accept their arguments. Seems like a long stretch.

      By offering the 1st amendment as their only defense, the CBS lawyers seem to be hoping against hope that the judge will agree and toss out the case. And if he doesn't, then it looks like their only alternative would be some sort of settlement.

      Would Wood be willing to accept the cash without demanding a complete retraction on the part of CBS and all the other defendants? And would CBS and the others be willing to retract publicly, which would be a major embarrassment?

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    7. I've never thought CBS would defend their premise. They hired an outside production company and did an end run around their own legal advisors to grab ratings during September Sweeps Week, and probably set aside X millions to settle any resultant lawsuit.

      Likewise, that 80-some page piece of garbage Complaint submitted by Wood is nothing a real trial lawyer would care to prosecute; it's merely a rant, and imo Wood has intended to settle from the jump.

      A lot depends on how savvy this Wayne County judge proves to be. Most judges will not dismiss at this stage, but let the case be heard on it's merits, let the parties have their day in court. We can then expect they'll go through the motions of discovery, each hoping the other blinks first and offers to settle - but settle they will. CBS cannot prove its claims and Burke's lawsuit has inherent problems.

      Wood has, I believe, accepted cash without retraction in at least some of the previous seven defamation suits, but none of those books or shows reached as large an audience as this one did. I think it likely he'll get at least a lukewarm, quasi-retraction out of 'em.

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  15. Thank you Lil for always keeping us informed and up to date with news pertaining to this case and other points of interest! What I would really like to see is video of Burke's day in court, more than the snippet for the Detroit news station (with Spitz). Wonder if that's accessible anywhere? I've been looking most of yesterday.

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    1. You're welcome. Here is a libk from juror 13/Shakedown title (they have several crime books written) that disprove Wood's claims in court that 'the boy' has never been accused in MSM since 1999.
      https://shakedowntitle.com/2017/03/09/suppression-of-burke-ramsey-as-a-suspect/

      In other cold case news, for those familiar with the Jaliek Rainwalker case, a skull has been found believed to be of a boy, aged 10-13 years. Waiting on DNA.

      Delete
    2. Good article Lil. So Lin Wood's argument is specious, that there have been no other articles or books printed accusing Burke of killing his sister. But his argument that they did not go after Kolar previously because his book was a "miserable failure" (and thus did not have a vast readership), is trite.

      IF CBS goes on the offense and actually conducts discovery on whether Burke has involvement in his sister's death, as stated in an earlier article, by the firm's entertainment litigation group published in Variety, then Wood would have to argue that those claims are false, and prove why so - would he not? Then, we may have a trial, which would be great great news.

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    3. My first thought, Lil, upon seeing Burke shaggy haired and unshaven in court on Wednesday, was that it's a ploy on Lin Wood's part to illustrate Burke's mental anguish over CBS'S accusations. But I'm a little cynical about lawyerly machinations.

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    4. And the guy whose profile you admired is likely Wood's Michigan co-counsel. It's doubtful Wood, based in Atlanta, is licensed to practice in Michigan, and the way around that is to affiliate oneself with a local firm and petition the court for permission.


      Delete
  16. "It’s strange that he can’t come up with an alibi that holds up isn’t it? Surely if he’s innocent, he just needs to tell us where he was? So why doesn’t he?"

    "Jessie Misskelley has no alibi either."

    "Jason Baldwin has no alibi."


    You just posted my reasons for questioning their supposed innocence. What are the chances of three innocent people each needing to come up with lies to establish an alibi?

    Funny how the documentaries never liked bringing this issue up.

    Either way, we'll never know what really happened that night.


    "How do you explain the fact that Hobbs and Jacoby's DNA was found inside the knot used to hog tie the boys, whilst not a shred of any of the accused boys DNA was recovered?"

    So you'll give Patsy a free pass on her fibers being found twisted into the garrote but not give them the same?




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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. "So you'll give Patsy a free pass on her fibers being found twisted into the garrote but not give them the same?"

      I knew that was going to be asked!
      Patsy was JB's mother, she interacted with her intimately, so yes, I would expect her clothing fibres to be found on JonBenet (were any of Patsy's jacket fibres actually found "twisted into the garrote"? Certain, red, fibres were found on the duct tape, I'm not sure they were ever conclusively linked to Patsy, however)
      None of Jacoby's DNA should have been found anywhere near the boys, as he didn't interact with them. I would expect Hobbs DNA to perhaps be on his step son's clothes, but for his hair to be weaved into the knot used to tie the boys, coupled with the circumstantial evidence that points to his guilt, I think it's relatively clear he was involved in the boys murder.
      Do you really believe three teenage boys - one of them intellectually impaired - would be smart enough to not leave one iota of DNA behind?

      Delete
  17. "As for your theory on jonbenet, I am aware you are Pdi, but can't recall if your theory involved Jr in the cover up?"

    At the very least, I think John was highly suspicious of Patsy beginning around the time of the 911 call on the 26th.

    "And how do you stand on prior sexual abuse, if you don't mind reminding me thanks."

    There has never been any definitive conclusion on whether or not the evidence of prior sexual abuse was in fact motivated and inflicted with a sexual purpose. Based on all of the facts and evidence of the case I feel that it is more likely that JonBenet was the victim of rough wiping. When a female child defecates in bed and sleeps in it, her vagina can often get infected. I suspect the pediatrician pointed out to Patsy the importance of keeping it clean. I think at times, out of frustration or simply over-doing the cleaning process, Patsy would go too deep and inflict damage.

    Hercule

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    1. It just blows my mind how many here refuse to accept that a wealthy, well spoken, white man is fully capable of molesting his child.

      The overwhelming, physical evidence *does* point to JonBenet having been sexually abused, so why some would prefer to blame mommy, along with "rough wiping", is truly disturbing. There will never be justice for this child.

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    2. I don't refuse to accept MS D, I'm just not entirely comfortable with it being irrefutable proof.

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    3. "At the very least, I think John was highly suspicious of Patsy beginning around the time of the 911 call on the 26th."

      So her being fully dressed while asleep in bed when he got up to take his shower was not highly suspicious?

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    4. It's not irrefutable proof, eve. If it were, the case would have been closed 20 years ago. But it IS evidence that could be used very effectively to argue a circumstantial case.

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    5. "There has never been any definitive conclusion on whether or not the evidence of..."

      Stop! "HAS NEVER BEEN..DEFINITIVE CONCLUSIONS....ON WHETHER OR NOT...WAS IN FACT...." Listen to yourself!

      If something has "never been"... "IT" can't matter!

      ALL conclusions DEFINE beliefs of those who render them!

      NOTHING "concluded" can be "so" and "not so"!

      Your use of idiomatic expressions like "was in fact" and "at the very least", reeks of intellectual dishonesty and hubris. Stop it!

      "At the very least, I think John was highly suspicious of Patsy beginning around the time of the 911 call on the 26th."

      Should we abide by the "least of your thinking" or do you prefer us to consider John an eye witness to Patsy's crime? What were the limits, around the time of the 911 call, outside of which, the degree of John's suspicions potentially grew or shrunk? Did they vacillate or continue moving in one direction only? Other than those time limits what other factors, if any, contributed to John's changing suspicions regarding Patsy's role in the crime? Was calling the police while her daughter lay dead in the basement one of them? Or was killing her daughter BY calling the police a factor?

      "Based on all of the facts and evidence of the case I feel..."

      The proper response to "facts and evidence", when lives are at stake, is thinking, not feeling.

      "When a female child defecates in bed and sleeps in it, her vagina can often get infected."

      What about "a male child" first-born to Luca Brasi who has a sex change operation before the age of six? What are "her" chances?

      Okay, okay....you get the point...I hope!



      Mike G

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  18. Thanks hercule, I have been reading quite extensively on the subject of prior sexual abuse since hearing a pathologist speak on one of the more recent documentaries. He stated that without verbal reporting by a child, consistent with some injuries, no claim should made. Much of the reading I've done regarding the size of the hymenal opening, suggests that in more recent years, case studies have concluded that children of this age with non sexual interference, varied in terms of hymen size when measured with known cases of those that had experienced sexual penetration other than penile. Concluding the same as the pathologist in the documentary. Not disputing the experts that have said there was prior sexual abuse, but this reading does make me wonder. I don't have a theory except to say I felt patsy was involved in some way.

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  19. Hercule, what I like about you is that you have field experience and you have studied this case, taken notes, compiled a theory and have provided rebuttal to any theory other than Patsy being responsible. I have a few questions for you since I don't wish to go back in time and re read. There also may be newcomers to this site who have not followed every blog since 2012.

    1. I think you believe Patsy accidentally shoved JB and that the scuffle happened in JB's room (since you mentioned the toilet lid previously). What do you think precipitated the accident - a verbal disagreement of some sort or anger over bed wetting (sheets were not wet).

    2. You stated that you believe John was "highly suspicious" of Patsy around the time of the 911 call. So you must believe then that Patsy also strangled her daughter - unless you believe John did that right around the time of the 911 call. And wrote the 2 1/2 page note.

    3. What part if any do you believe Burke played that night? Was he awake and listening? Was he talking during the 911 call?

    Thank you Hercule.

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  20. Also - Gumshoe, you asked earlier why Burke didn't sue James Kolar over his book Foreign Faction five years ago. Lin Wood said because the book was a miserable failure. I think the honest answer is there would not have been a big payday from James Kolar, as there may be with Dr. Werner Spitz and CBS.

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    1. That's possible, but they have a valid point. 10 million people watched the show. How many people read Kolar's book?

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    2. I'm not sure, but before Kolar wrote his book how many investigators carefully laid out why an intruder could not have come through the window (the cobweb) that Burke's train track piece was a fit for the "stun gun" mark, and raised the possibility that Burke struck the head blow. That then turned the tide and popular belief toward Burke did it not? I would say his book had a powerful impact.

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  21. Here is one of the many things about John that irks the hell out of me. And Mike, I hope you do put together a synopsis on the window. At any rate, he appears helpful with the "small things" if you will - hints around the window that he broke in himself, or that the window was left open to air out the place, or handing the ransom note pad of paper to LE, not a care in the world. At other times according to PMPT he does not remember whether he saw the blanket and JB before or after he turned on the light, or whether he'd stepped into the room before seeing his daughter on the floor. He has no explanation why Fleet opened the wine cellar door earlier and not seen the blanket and body whereas he had seen them both right away. But where it could really count he has this to say about taking a lie detector test (quoting from PMPT):

    Thomas: "What if I asked you to take one?"
    John: "I have never been so insulted in my life as by that question, Ramsey said angrily."
    Thomas: "Will you take one?"
    John: "No."

    Then that's it. Really? It's an "insult"? Doesn't he want to be cleared so they can go find the intruder?

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  22. Ms D, maybe you do not realize this but there are a lot of illegal and shady dealings in the justice system. These criminals that you claim testified against Terry Hobbs clearly had an agenda. If you think the credibility of these men should be taken with high regard then I would certainly have to question yours. Let us take a look at the FACTS:

    "Cody" Curtis Gott and Christian "Blake" Sisk are former friends of Terry Hobbs' nephew, Mike Hobbs Jr. Their interviews were late additions to the film. They went on camera for West of Memphis in January 2012 to talk about what they call "The Hobbs Family Secret."

    They claim that Mike Hobbs Jr. told them that he heard that his uncle, Terry Hobbs, was involved in the murders. Gott and Sisk were on probation for felony burglary of their high school when producer Amy Berg interviewed them and got them to tell their "Hobbs Family Secret" tale on camera. In May 2013 they were sent to prison on new charges. Sisk was sentenced to 10 years in prison. Gott was sentenced to 7.

    There have only been a few media mentions of the fact that these "star witnesses" against Terry Hobbs are young convicted felons from Mountain Home, AR with lengthy arrest records.

    There are numerous problems with "The Hobbs Family Secret" tale that Gott and Sisk are telling:

    1. Mike Hobbs and his son have denied ever saying that Terry Hobbs killed Michael, Chris, and
    Stevie.

    2. The Gott/Sisk statements are hearsay. While they might work in a movie, the statements are likely inadmissible in a court of law. Terry Hobbs' brother's son says he heard someone say that "his uncle did it" would not cut it in a real courtroom.

    3. Gott and Sisk may have a grudge against Mike Hobbs Jr. According to Mike Hobbs Sr., Gott and Sisk made up "The Hobbs Family Secret" in order to retaliate against Mike Jr. According to Mike Hobbs Sr., his son provided information to authorities on the Mountain Home High School break-in that led to the arrest and felony conviction of Gott and Sisk.

    4. The WM3 defense team claims Gott and Sisk "passed polygraph tests." However, the defense team chose the testers and paid any fees that may have been charged related to that testing. The results have not been analyzed by anyone other than the defense team for accuracy. Plus, polygraph tests are seldom admissible in court.

    5. Gott and Sisk may have had a financial motivation. According to the defense timeline of events, the "Hobbs Family Secret" tip came in to the WM3 defense team phone "tip line" on December 11th, 2011. On December 16th Gott, Sisk, and a 3rd unnamed informant were flown to Washington, D.C. to meet with WM3 attorney Steve Braga and WM3 PR agent Lonnie Soury. There, they signed affidavits and were polygraphed. It is unclear whether there was an award connected with the "WM3 phone tip line" in December 2011. However, by February 2012 an anonymous donor had contributed a $100,000 reward to that tip line. At the very least, convicted felons Gott and Sisk got an all-expense-paid trip to D.C. out of the deal.

    As noted above, because Gott and Sisk are convicted felons with extensive criminal records, they would not make credible witnesses against Terry Hobbs in court.

    To be cont...

    Hercule

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  23. ...Contd:

    Stewart and Guy were convicted rapists that were serving 40 years (Guy) and 70 years (Stewart) on rape and other charges.

    In 1996, Bennie Guy pled guilty to raping an 11-year-old girl in an Arkansas motel room. He had also been convicted of sexual assault in Texas in 1996 and was serving that 40 year term concurrently with the one in Arkansas. On top of all that, he escaped from jail in 1997 and was serving 6 years for that. He was denied parole in 2008. Despite this, he was miraculously released on parole on June 11, 2013. He had severed just 17 years of the 40 he should have served for raping a little 11-year-old girl. Why was Guy released from prison just months after his assistance with the WM3 case? Coincidence? I think not.

    Hercule

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  24. Lil, on the second link you provided here over in the right hand margin is a book advertised by Nick Van de Leek and Lisa Wilson, authors, called "The Day After Christmas." It's a trilogy. Did you notice that and have you ever heard of it? Anyone else? It's described as:

    "The day after Christmas trilogy examines the aftermath of the six year old's murder after a three year period - in other words the period from the discovery of the dead child to the publication of their first book and the filing of the first lawsuits in 1998 and 1999."

    The Table of Contents has some interesting titles:

    "Why would you pretend to be asleep when your sister is missing/dead"

    "Zonked"

    "Did Burke Break the Basement Window?"

    "Pam Paugh and the Attack of the Cardboard Boxes"

    if you just click on the first book you get a free look inside, not lengthy, but looks interesting. Might be a crock, but I haven't heard of it before.

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  25. Yes,I think they have three sets of trilogies on Jonbenet. As well as OJ, Oscar Patraius (sp) and I've read several of their blog entries. They have done podcasts I've listened to one. And juror13, the woman author does post on topix sometimes.
    I'm pretty sure we've linked to some of the photos they have from the crime scene.
    Irrc, they started their Jonbenet books several months before the 20th anniversary.

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  26. On book 3 now, inside look. Ms D, authors offer up what the sound of metal scraping on concrete sound came from, if you are interested. I may have to purchase these books, cheaper on kindle.

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    1. Sorry, Inq, but I can't find it. When I type in the title of the book, I'm only given links to Amazon to download it.....can you perhaps provide a link here, please?

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    2. Do the following. Go to amazon.com "books". In the window type in "The Day After Christmas" , I don't think you will have to type in Nick Van de Leek and Lisa Wilson, but those are the authors. Find book one. The book should display itself plus "look inside." You know what to do next. Look inside. Over in the far right hand margin smaller versions of the other two books will be displayed. You can move to those to get book 2 and 3, then look inside those.

      If all that fails I'll try a link.

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    3. If that fails, try this link but it's simply the tagline at the top of the amazon book site. Here:

      http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MQJ6S31/#reader_B01MQJ6S31

      As you know sometimes at the bottom of a book page there is the tagline "Surprise me". Click on that to get more pages - they are random, and out of order, but you will get more of them to read. For free.

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    4. Uh, yeah. that link doesn't work (above). So try the other suggestion. Any other way you would get to a book you can purchase through amazon. They always have a "look inside."

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    5. I'm sorry, Inq, but there is no "look inside" option available in the right hand margin, or anywhere else on the page, and I've visited all of them again just now.

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    6. Ahhh....finally figured it out! Though there's no "Look Inside" option in the right hand margin on my page, upon clicking the book, on the left hand side, a preview automatically pops up. I've now read through the previews of all three books. Quite interesting, though the Bird Of Paradise metaphor in book two was a little "flowery" (no pun intended) for me and didn't give me much of an insight. But I might order the books, I need some new reading material.

      Delete
  27. How do I go about buying the pen that penned the ransom note?

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    1. Why do you think it's for sale? It would be a 20+ year old sharpie. Why do you want it?

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    2. I just so happen to have said pen in my possession, Zach, (don't worry about the details of how I came about finding it, it's the same brand, same colour, I'm sure you'll be happy to take my word for it that it's THE Sharpie pen, no?!) and I'll sell it to you for the minuscule fee of $1,500 AUD - I could sure do with a mini vacation - what do you say??? :D

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    3. You have yourself a deal chica <3

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    4. Fortunately for you, Zach, the Australian dollar is worth only 2 cents US. :-)

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  28. Lil, I've now read all of the free inside looks of the trilogy amazon has to offer, and without spending $21 to read in full on kindle I get the gist. It's very cleverly written, with input from both authors, collectively putting out a narrative with engaging analogies - much the way they have written their books on Jodi Arias and Oscar Pistorius which I will eventually get to.

    They have compared passages of interrogations from Patsy and John a poorly done murder, but an ingenious manipulation of the investigation which in combination, oddly worked. If I do purchase all three books some of the answers that are left unsaid on amazon will fall into place, according to Van de Leek and Wilson. Intriguing chapter titles are: "John Douglas Sells Out"; "The Ramsey's Slip Up"; "Slippery Sleeping Patterns"; and "Spitz Spits Back."

    But I will not be seduced again into thinking Burke did it, even though some points they have made, many points they have made, are effectively woven into each book giving us not only a how, but a why.

    For those that are still staunchly in the Burke corner by all means, read the trilogy. It may bolster your stand. But for me, the cool hand of logic prevails as outlined by Doc on the thread following this one. It's his story, and I'm sticking with it.

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  29. "The Craven Silence" is a trilogy of books on the case by Van de Leek and Wilson as well Ms D.

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