Boulder Skies at Dusk

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Parents Who Kill

RDI theories differ on who killed JBR and whether or when the parent who did it told the other and involved them in a cover-up. The following briefly summarizes evidence that tends to incriminate or exculpate both parents, whereas subsequent sections will then focus on the evidence that tends to incriminate or exculpate them as individuals.


Seven books have been written presenting joint RDI theories (this excludes 3 books that focus on John as the killer and 5 that focus on Patsy).
Miller 2007. Thomas "Doc" Miller. JonBenet Ramsey: Prostitution of Justice.
Lakin 2005. Peggy Lakin. Journey Beyond Reason.
Rubacher 2000. Richard Rubacher. JonBenét Knows Evil Love.
Smith 2015. Laurence Smith. The Last Christmas of JonBenét Ramsey.
Smith 2016. Laurence Smith. The Last Christmas of JonBenet Ramsey II: A Freakish Accident, Murderous Cover-Up, And a Shameless Plea-Bargain.
Stobie 1999. Jane Gray Stobie. JonBenét's Gift: A Miracle for the Millennium.
Walker 2001. John H. Walker. JonBenét Ramsey: The Travesty of Innocence-Now Hear the Truth.

Grand Jury Indictment

Grand Jury Action. A Boulder grand jury indictment in 1999 accused John and Patsy Ramsey of two counts each of child abuse resulting in death in connection to the first-degree murder of JonBenét. The charges didn’t directly accuse the Ramseys of killing their daughter. Instead they alleged that the parents permitted JonBenét to be placed in a dangerous situation that led to her death and it accused them of helping whoever killed the girl. "Stan Garnett, Boulder's then-current District Attorney, told CNN that one day before being sworn in as district attorney of Boulder in 2009, he was told in a top-secret meeting about the unanimous decision in favor of charging John and Patsy Ramsey that had been made by the grand jury in 1999."

DA Inaction. The Ramseys were never officially indicted because former District Attorney Alex Hunter refused to sign the documents and prosecute the Ramseys. RDI proponents argue that just because an indictment was not issued does not mean one or both parents were not guilty. Several reasons have been offered for why DA Alex Hunter ultimately elected not to prosecute the Ramseys.

Which Parent Did it? Former prosecutor Wendy Murphy has stated: "It‘s why the JonBenet Ramsey parents are both free, because you can‘t try the father, he‘ll blame the mother. You can‘t try the mother, she‘ll—so they both walk."

DNA Created Reasonable Doubt. According to the Observer Magazine (Guardian Unlimited): "'They were going to test all the Bloomingdales factory workers in Hong Kong, until they realised it wouldn't have made any difference,' says Bob Grant, former District Attorney for Adams County and adviser to the grand jury. 'I can make the whole argument - it came from the factory, it came from the cleaners, it came from the pants being placed in a hamper with other clothes that had other foreign DNA on them - it could have come from any number of places. But as a prosecutor, I've got to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. And foreign male DNA mixed with her blood in her underpants: that's reasonable doubt, by definition.' The grand jury voted not to indict the Ramseys. At this point, for the prosecutors, the case was over - it was, as Grant realised early on, an 'unprosecutable case'."

Could Parents Do This?

From FBI agent Ron Walker, who was at the Ramsey house on 12/26/96 from the A&E program "Anatomy of an Investigation": "Well, as much as it pains me to say it, yes, I've seen parents who have decapitated their children, I've seen cases where parents have drowned their children in bathtubs, I've seen cases where parents have strangled their children, have placed them in paper bags and smothered them, have strapped them in car seats and driven them into a body of water, any way that you can think of that a person can kill another person, almost all those ways are also ways that parents can kill their children."

Filicide in the U.S. Frequency. According to CNN, a study in the journal Forensic Science International looked at three decades worth of filicide cases (between 1976 and 2007) and found they occurred about 500 times a year in the US. Almost 72% of those killed by their own parents were 6 years old or younger; one-third of the victims were just babies under 1 year of age. 42.6% of the killers in these crimes were mothers, with fathers making up about 57.4% of those who killed their own offspring. Thus, 4 children are killed by their mothers every week. Only 10% of the victims were killed by their stepparents, i.e., 90% of the victims were the biological sons or daughters of the killer.

Motivations. According to CNN, Dr. Timothy Mariano, the study's lead author, offered up three theories: the parents are often mentally ill, they usually have higher levels of testosterone and the offspring that they kill may be considered unwanted. According to CNN, Forensic psychiatrist Phillip J. Resnick, pioneer in the study of filicide research, identified five major reasons:

Altruism: The parent kills the child because he or she may perceive it to be in the child's best interest. It may be reality-based (e.g., the child suffers from a terminal illness) or precede the suicide of the parent, as the parent feels it would be unfair to leave the child behind to face the cruel world.
Acute psychosis: The parent kills the child based on ideas that are inconsistent with reality. For example, the parent believes the child has been possessed by the devil.
Unwanted child: The parent kills the child that he or she regards as a hindrance.
Accidental: The child's death is an unintentional outcome of parental physical abuse.
Spousal revenge: The parent kills the child in an effort to exact revenge on the other parent.

Parents Who Attempted to Cover Up Their Accidental Killing of Own Child

Zahra Baker (Age 10, Hickory, NC: 2010). A 911 call was made by Elisa on October 9, 2010 at 5:30 am, reporting a fire in the back of the family residence in Hickory. When the police came for the reported fire, there was a ransom note and the smell of gasoline coming from Adam's company truck, a Chevrolet Tahoe. In a second 911 phone call made when Zahra was reported missing at 2 pm on the same day, Adam Baker explained that during a fire in their backyard a $1 million ransom note was found on his company truck the night before, addressed to Adam's boss and landlord, Mark Coffey. Adam explained that they called 911 earlier that day about the fire and implied that whoever started the fire, may have done so in order to distract the family, in order to take Zahra. Elisa Baker's aunt Buzzie Winkler told reporters that Elisa told her Zahra died after being sick for 2 weeks, and both parents dismembered her and hid the remains. Elisa's aunt said: "She'd been sick two weeks before she died, when they found her, I guess they didn't know what to do. They just went wild." In September 2011, the victim's stepmother, Elisa Baker, pleaded guilty to murdering Zahra, and was sentenced to eighteen years in prison.

Lazaro Figueroa (Age 3, Miami Beach: 1990). Jurors found 56-year-old Ana Maria Cardona guilty of murder and aggravated child abuse in the killing of 3-year-old Lazaro Figueroa, whose emaciated body was found hidden in bushes in Miami Beach in November 1990. The boy was beaten throughout his short life and was starving to death, weighing just 18 pounds. His body was covered in bumps and bruises and cigarette burns. His skull had been fractured, and his left arm was permanently bent at a 90-degree angle.

Elaina Steinfurth (Age 18 months, Toledo, OH: 2013). Angela Steinfurth, Elaina's mom, picked up a crying Elaina by one of her limbs and threw her against a wall, causing a lump on her head, blood on her nose and a black eye. When Angela realized the seriousness of Elaina's injuries, she went to (ex-boyfriend) Steven King for help hiding what she had done. King said in court that he found Elaina injured the following morning. He says he tried to give her CPR. "Blood started coming out of her mouth and nose. She was hardly breathing, and she was unconscious," he said. "I panicked, I thought she was dying. I covered her mouth and nose, and held it there until she stopped breathing."

Parental Strangulation of Own Children

6 Children Strangled by Mother (St. Paul, MN: 1998). "On September 3, 1998, in St. Paul, Minnesota, Khoua Her, a Hmong immigrant who had been living in the United States for several years,strangled her six children and attempted suicide before calling 911 to report the incident."
3 Children Strangled by Parents (Brownsville, TX: 2003). Angela Camacho and 24-year-old John Allen Rubio, her common-law husband, were accused of strangling and decapitating 3-year-old Julissa Quezada, 1-year-old John Esthefan Rubio and 2-month-old Mary Jane Rubio in 2003.
4 Children Strangled by Mother (Elkhart, IN: 2006). "A woman accused of strangling her four young children was charged with murder...Alvarez was found unconscious with a faint pulse Nov. 14 in the basement of her Elkhart home next to the bodies of the four children, who Hill said were strangled."

Parental False Claims of Kidnappings to Hide Child Homicide

Caylee Anthony (Age 2, Orlando, FL: 2008). On July 15, 2008, two-year-old Caylee Anthony was reported missing in a 911 call made by her maternal grandmother, Cindy, who said she had not seen Caylee for 31 days and that Casey's car smelled like a dead body had been inside it. Cindy said Casey had given varied explanations as to Caylee's whereabouts before finally telling her that she had not seen Caylee for weeks. Casey lied to detectives, telling them Caylee had been kidnapped by a nanny on June 9, and that she had been trying to find her, too frightened to alert the authorities. On December 11, 2008, Caylee's skeletal remains were found with a blanket inside a trash bag in a wooded area near the family home. Investigative reports and trial testimony alternated between duct tape being found near the front of the skull and on the mouth of the skull. The medical examiner mentioned duct tape as one reason she ruled the death a homicide, but officially listed it as "death by undetermined means".On July 5, 2011, a jury found Casey not guilty of first-degree murder, aggravated child abuse, and aggravated manslaughter of a child, but guilty of four misdemeanor counts of providing false information to a law enforcement officer. With credit for time served, she was released on July 17, 2011.

Parental Murders of Children With Surviving Siblings

Sherin Mathews (Age 3, Richardson, TX: 2017). Sherin Mathews was killed by her adoptive father, Wesley Mathews; she had an older sister.
Damon & Devone Routier (Age 5, Rowlett, TX: 1996). Darlie Routier stabbed to death 5-year-old son Damon and 6-year-old son Devone while her youngest son, 7-month-old Drake, was asleep upstairs with her husband, Darin. Neither were harmed.
Aarone Thompson (Age 6, Centennial, CO: 2005). Aaron Thompson was convicted of the death of his daughter, Aarone (who purportedly went missing at age 6, but police believe actually had been murdered at age 4). There were 7 other siblings in the family abused by their family.

Missing Children Whose Parents Are Suspected by Police

Sabrina Aisenberg (Age 5 months, Tampa FL: 1997). In the early morning of November 24, 1997, Marlene Aisenberg reported waking up to find the laundry-room door to the garage open, and then discovered her five-month-old baby Sabrina was missing from her crib. In a case that mirrored that of JonBenét Ramsey less than a year earlier, the parents gave an impassioned plea for help on local news, and immediately public opinion and investigators began to focus on the Aisenbergs themselves as possible suspects. Adding to the mysterious case were allegations that the photograph used in many of the missing-child posters was actually of the Aisenbergs’s older daughter as an infant. The Aisenbergs were eventually indicted on conspiracy and additional charges, which were later dropped when a judge ruled that incriminating recordings of the Aisenbergs discussing the case had been obtained illegally.
Although an informant reported that a cellmate confessed to chopping up and dumping the baby’s body in crab traps in the nearby Tampa Bay, that claim has never been substantiated, and the fate of baby Aisenberg is still unknown.

Hailey Cummings (Age 5, Satsuma, FL: 2009). Hailey Cummings' dad Ronald was working the night shift as a crane operator. So his girlfriend Misty Croslin had put 5-year-old Haleigh to bed on a mattress in their caravan in Satsuma, Putnam County, Florida. Misty went to bed at about 10pm on a second mattress, just feet from Haleigh’s. But when, a few hours later, she awoke needing the toilet, she found Haleigh gone. The back door of the caravan was ajar, held in place by an old breeze block. Straightaway, Misty raised the alarm. But police hit a dead end, finding no trace of Haleigh anywhere.
Something seemed off. Misty’s story kept changing. She couldn’t remember what Haleigh had been wearing when she’d vanished. Weeks on, another story broke. Ronald had proposed to Misty and they’d got married. But surely this wasn’t the time for romantic gestures and joyful weddings? Investigators were suspicious. If Misty and Ronald were married, that meant they would be unable to testify against each other in court.
So did the couple have something to hide? More rumours spread. Could the disappearance be drugs-related? Had Haleigh been taken to pay off a debt? Or even sold? Misty and Ronald insisted she had not. But then Misty made an unexpected claim. She said she’d known what had happened to Haleigh Cummings all along, but had been too terrified to say. She said that day in February 2009, Ronald had argued with Misty’s relative about the ownership of a gun. Later, when Ronald was at work, the relative had shown up with another family member. The two men had turned the caravan inside out looking for the gun. Failing, as a ‘replacement’, they took Haleigh, bundling her into a black bag and promising to drown her in a nearby river. Officers soon discovered the two men had been in the area that day. But no evidence could be found against them. As of late January 2018, the case was still unresolved.

Kyron Horman (Age 7, Portland, OR: 2011). Kyron was 7 years old when he disappeared at school. On June 4, 2010, Kyron was brought to school by his stepmother, Terri Horman, who then stayed with him while he attended a science fair. Terri Horman stated that she left the school at around 8:45 a.m. and remembered seeing Kyron walking down the hall to his first class. However, he was never seen in his first math class; instead, he was marked absent for the day and has not been seen since. In late June 2010, in the midst of the investigation into Kyron's disappearance, Kyron's biological father, Kaine Horman, was reportedly told by investigators that his wife, Terri Horman, had offered their landscaper "a lot of money" to kill him. Ultimately, there was no indictment of Terri Moulton Horman after the Multnomah County Grand Jury heard the case in 2010.

Lisa Irwin (Age 11 months, Kansas City, MO: 2011). Lisa Irwin was just under 11 months when she went missing. Deborah Bradley, Lisa's mother, said that Lisa's father, Jeremy Irwin, discovered her missing around 4:00 a.m. on October 4. On October 19, 2011, a search was performed of the Irwin home, and court documents showed that a cadaver dog turned up a scent of a dead body near the mother's bed. During an interview with the Associated Press, Deborah said the police had accused her of being involved in Lisa's disappearance, and claimed that she had failed a lie detector test, telling her "You did it. You did it. And we have nothing." Lisa's brothers had been scheduled for interviews and to collect DNA samples regarding the case, but their parents cancelled the night before, according to family attorney Tacopina. Yet there was evidence of an intruder: The family’s three cell phones had also been taken, but the front door was unlocked and there was no other sign of an intruder.
Since stranger abductions are rare, and abductions of babies from their homes even rarer, the investigation originally focused on the parents. However, Irwin’s mother passed a lie-detector test, and there were witness tips about possible suspects, including reports of a man with an “under-dressed baby” in the neighborhood the night Irwin went missing, as well as the discovery of burnt baby clothes inside a dumpster. As of late January 2018, the case was still unresolved.

Deorr Kunz, Jr. (Age 2, Leadore, ID: 2015). A 2015 summer camping trip in the Idaho mountains went awry when two-year-old DeOrr Kunz vanished from his chair, where he’d been while his parents looked for nearby places to fish. A massive search effort followed, including all-terrain vehicles and hundreds of volunteers, but no trace of the little boy was ever found. Kunz’s parents and the two other adults who were on the trip are still considered persons of interest in the case, and investigators have said that there are inconsistencies in their timelines and statements. However, no physical evidence has been found to indicate foul play, and the parents maintain that their son may have been kidnapped by individuals living off-the-grid in the woods. Forest officials say it would be difficult for anyone to live in the forest, due to weather conditions, and that there is also no evidence of any animal attack.

Madeleine McCann (Age 3, Praia da Luz, Portugal: 2007). Madeleine was nearly 4 when she disappeared from a holiday resort apartment while her parents were dining at a nearby restaurant. She had been sleeping in the room with her younger siblings while their parents had dinner with friends, and Gerry McCann reported that she was in her bed when he did a routine check-in at 9:05 P.M. By 10:00 P.M., when Kate McCann was conducting her check-in, Madeline was gone. Because the holiday apartment was not initially treated as a crime scene, multiple people were in and out, and potentially crucial evidence was compromised or gone. Over the following weeks, particularly after misinterpreting a British DNA analysis, the Portuguese police came to believe that Madeleine had died in an accident in the apartment, and that her parents had covered it up. The McCanns were given arguido (suspect) status in September 2007, which was lifted when Portugal's attorney general archived the case in July 2008 because of a lack of evidence.
The current theory – after police have investigated at least 60 persons of interest – is that Madeline may have been kidnapped or killed during a botched burglary. The case remains open, but investigators arrested a German man, but was released for lack of evidence. Forensic evidence has yielded no clear leads and there are no plans to conduct any further testing.

Amnesia and Crime

Given that claims of amnesia have been reported in an estimated range of 10 to 70 percent of homicides, it is conceivable that either Patsy or John Ramsey committed the crime and developed amnesia about their role, although neither ever made this claim.

Lack of Cooperation

Ramseys Delayed Police Interviews. The parents were not cooperative in talking with authorities in a timely fashion. They placed strict conditions on how they would be interviewed. In April 1998, "John Ramsey wrote a letter to Boulder District Attorney Alex Hunter at home and offered to meet. The only ground rule: no Boulder police would be allowed in the room." (Glick et al. 1998).
The parents "lawyered up" very quickly. Ramseys Refused Lie Detector Tests. There is a dispute about whether Ramseys refused an offer by BPD to take lie detector tests. In April 2000, Ramseys later did explicitly refuse in to take lie detector tests conducted by the FBI after BPD accepted their offer to take such tests.There were inconsistencies in the stories told by the Ramseys when their various accounts in media and police interviews are compared. These relate to whether JBR was asleep when they got home from the White's on Christmas night, whether she was awakened before being put to bed, and the order events that occurred on the morning she was found missing. Skeptics argue these consistencies are evidence of deception and deliberate cover-up and infer that since innocent parties would have no reason to lie, this must mean the Ramseys are guilty either of killing their daughter or perhaps covering up for Burke.

Lack of Affection

"Linda Hoffman-Pugh, who worked for the family as a cleaning woman for nearly fourteen months prior to JonBenet's death...asserts the Ramseys had a troubled marriage. (PSDMF P 4.) Ms. Hoffman-Pugh states that Mr. Ramsey "berated" Mrs. Ramsey for being "a lousy homemaker and cook" shortly before the murder and that the couple "never once demonstrated any affection for each other, physical or otherwise, in front of her." (PSDMF PP 95-98.)" (Carnes 2003:13).

Framing Friends and Workers?

Many who believe the Ramseys did it point to their alleged efforts to have close friends or family "thrown under the bus" as targets of suspicion.
Fleet White, Jr. In police interviews, the Ramseys mentioned Fleet White in varying contexts all while overtly denying that they believed he was capable of such a killing. A permanent rift arose between Fleet White and John Ramsey that was already apparent by JBR's funeral. Some believe Fleet White was suspicious of John and that this might have provided motivation for the Ramseys to cast some doubts on Fleet White's innocence or veracity.
Linda Pugh-Hoffman? Some argue that odd clues such as finding Burke's Swiss army knife (even though it had been hidden for a month). No obvious point of entry and several RN clues all can be explained as deliberate efforts to point attention at Linda Pugh-Hoffman, i.e., someone who knew where the knife was hidden and also could enter the house with a key.

What Happened to "Missing" Intruder Evidence?

Taken by Pam Paugh. Many believe Pam Paugh was able to remove incriminating evidence when she returned to the house for funeral clothes for the Ramseys and left with a large number of items. Steve Thomas reported that Paugh removed a large number of items from the house, including: "stuffed animals, tiaras, three dresses for JonBenet, pageant photo portfolios, toys and clothes for Burke, John Ramsey's Daytimer, the desk Bible, and clothing. For Patsy, there were black pants, dress suits, boots, and the contents of a curio cabinet. Bills, credit cards, a black cashmere trench coat, jewelry that included her grandmother's ring and an emerald necklace, bathrobes, a cell phone, personal papers, bank records, Christmas stockings, her Nordstrom's credit card, and even their passports!" (Thomas 2000:52).

Mysterious American Girl Doll Order

Doll Ordered 1/1/1997.Internet poster claims she used to work for Pleasant Company, which sells American Girl dolls. She found that on January 1, 1997, an American Girl doll had been ordered by and shipped to JonBenet herself at Pearl Street (the location of Access Graphics).
Potential Source of Duct Tape or Fibers?Internet poster believes the duct tape, dark blue fibers and tan fibers found at the crime scene all may have come from this doll, but Boulder authorities have taken no action based on her bringing this to their attention. (The doll also has a cord in the back that some thought might match the ligature, but this has been ruled out.
Possible Motivation for Ordering Doll. Some believe John Ramsey may have ordered this doll in case he was asked for the other one by police so that they wouldn't notice missing duct tape (which would have left a residue).
Innocent Explanation?Internet poster suggested that perhaps this doll was back-ordered or part of a "subscription" in which new dolls are sent every X months.

Exculpatory Evidence Regarding Ramseys

Motivations for Filicide.A recent article summarized the major reasons for filicide: "Specific motives for filicide were initially described by Resnick, classified as (1) altruistic, (2) acutely psychotic, (3) accidental filicide (fatal maltreatment), (4) unwanted child, and (5) spouse revenge filicide.1 Altruistic filicide is murder committed out of love to relieve the real or imagined suffering of the child. Altruistic filicide may be associated with suicide. For example, a mother who is suicidal may not be willing to leave her child motherless in a "cruel world." Distinct from this, acutely psychotic filicide occurs when a parent in the throes of acute psychosis (e.g., experiencing command hallucinations) kills his or her child with no comprehensible motive. Fatal maltreatment filicide may occur as a result of child abuse, neglect, or Munchausen syndrome by proxy. Parents committing spouse revenge filicides kill children in a specific attempt to make the spouse suffer. Furthermore, filicide may occur within the context of familicide, the extermination of the entire family."
Parents Who Kill Their Children Typically Display Prior Warning Signs. Jill Korbin, an expert on child abuse, "says there are usually clues that are obvious to those around parents who end up killing their children. "Prior to a homicide, lots of lay people know these men and women are having difficulty parenting..." she said in an AAA press release."
Degree of Violence Atypical. "The FBI had never before encountered this type of violence in a child homicide. No parent who killed a child had ever used a "garrote" for strangulation" (Schiller 1999a:307;
Memory is Fallible. The Ramseys have changed some of the details of events surrounding the killing which makes some people assume they are lying or covering up. But human memory is very fallible and probably even moreso in such a stressful situation in which the parents didn't know what to do or what to expect. "I have generally found that parents of child victims often don't remember the details of their own actions during these times of fear and stress" (Douglas 2001:377). It might actually be more suspicious if not a single detail of their story changed even after numerous retellings, since that might indicate they are recounting something very carefully planned and rehearsed.
Beauty Pageant Participation is Common. There are 3,000 beauty pageants held in the U.S. annually; participating parents do not view these as provocative and also generally believe that the girls who are participating do so for fun.
Ramseys Questioned Early. Judge Carnes notes that BPD "did, however, question defendants jointly at various times on December 26, 27 and 28, and, soon thereafter, began to focus the investigation on defendants as the main subjects. (SMF PP 54, 71-72; PSMF PP 54, 71-72.)" (Carnes 2003:31).
Extensive Forensic Evidence Provided. "During the course of the investigation, defendants signed over one hundred releases for information requested by the police, and provided all evidence and information requested by the police. (SMF P 61; PSMF 61.)(Carnes 2003:32). Handwriting Samples Provided Early. "Upon request, within days after the murder and in the months that followed, defendants provided the police with historical handwriting samples and supervised written exemplars. (SMF P 55; PSMF P 55.) Defendants also gave hair, including pubic hair, and DNA samples to the police. (SMF P 56, 60; PSMF P 56, 60.) Despite widespread criticism that defendants failed to cooperate in the murder investigation, defendants note that they agreed, on at least three occasions, to be interviewed separately by representatives of the police or the Boulder County District Attorney's Office. (SMF P 62; PSMF P 62.)" (Carnes 2003:32).
Ramseys Passed Lie Detector Tests, Toriello Tests Inconclusive. Gerard Toriello tested John Ramsey in April 2000 for a total of 5 hours and Patsy Ramsey for a total of 4 hours with inconclusive results. Both were taking Prozac at the time. Reasons for inconclusive results can include anxiety, mental fatigue or physical fatigue.
Gelb Tests: No Deception Detected. Edward I. Gelb, Ph.D separately tested John and Patsy Ramsey in May 2000 about whether they had killed JonBenet or whether they knew who did. He concluded: "Based on extensive polygraph examination, neither John nor Patsy Ramsey were attempting deception when they gave the indicated answers to the relative questions"
Ramseys Endured Tough Questions 42 Hours of Questioning. The parents endured very tough questioning by law enforcement. The June 1998 interviews "conducted by veteran homicide detectives from other cities, went on for 42 hours." (Glick et al. 1998).
Interrogators Sought to Break Ramseys Down. "At times, the questioning was rough, as the interrogators tried to break the Ramseys down. Hunter and his staff stood by in a nearby room, watching the proceedings on a bank of closed-circuit monitors." (Glick et al. 1998).
Character of ParentsNo Motive or Pathological Behavior; "Although most of Detective Smit's conclusions derive from his analysis of physical evidence, he has also testified that he has been unable to finds any motive for defendants to murder their daughter. (Smit. Dep. at 146.) Absent from the defendants' family history is any evidence of criminal conduct, sexual abuse, drug or alcohol abuse or violent behavior. (SMF PP 117-119; PSMF P 117-119.)" (Carnes 2003:99-100).
Parents Do Not Fit Profile.After spending days with Ramseys and talking with many people about the case, criminal profiler John Douglas concluded the parents did not fit the profile of this crime and he encouraged BPD to talk with people at the FBI. Unfortunately, Douglas reported, "when they came back, the Boulder Police, came back to the FBI Academy in Quantico to present the case, a particular agent there, who had been there for quite a long time said, if the Ramseys are not responsible, not responsible for this murder, I'll turn in my credentials." Because the Boulder police were very inexperienced in homicide, this view held a lot of sway and influenced the BPD investigation in that direction.
Testimonials From Persons Close to Family. According to People magazine, "To many friends and associates, however, the suggestion that someone in the Ramsey family might be responsible seemed incredible. Atlanta Neighbor. “There was never any indication of anything wrong in that home,” says businessman Joe Saportas, who lived next door to the Ramseys in Atlanta, where they resided until 1991. “I’d leave my kids with them anytime.” Former Nanny. Shirley Brady, who worked as a nanny for the Ramseys in Atlanta from 1986 to 1989, is even more adamant. “Anybody who thinks that this family could have committed this atrocious thing is insane,” Brady told The Denver Post.Photographer Randy Simons, who spent a day shooting a portfolio of JonBenét last June, recalls being struck by the uncommon devotion between mother and child. “Patsy was your normal mom who absolutely loved her kid,” says Simons. “She had the opportunity to spend a huge amount of time with JonBenét, and they were just really close.” To his eyes, they were “the perfect mother and the perfect daughter.”
Barbara Walters Assessment. Barbara Walters interviewed the Ramseys in early 2000. According to Time magazine, "Walters found the Ramseys "credible" overall, and she has helped produce a sympathetic package that could go a long way toward softening their image. She points out that the couple showed up to meet her without an attorney. "I have never done an interview with someone--not that I can remember--who was under the umbrella of suspicion without a lawyer present." And Walters has interviewed a long list of suspected low-lifes: Claus von Bulow, Imelda Marcos, Michael Milken. Says Walters: "Even Monica had a lawyer."
Charlie Brennan Assessment. "After writing about the case for 20 years, [reporter Charlie] Brennan says he has come to believe the family weren’t involved: “If you look at the autopsy photos and you see the deep furrow in her neck created by that ligature, you see a tremendous amount of force was used. That does not suggest staging to me – the person who did it, meant it. But the Ramseys have nothing in their background to suggest that this level of evil dwelled in their hearts,” he says."
No Marital Problems.The Ramseys "strongly deny any such marital problems. (See, e.g., J. Ramsey Dep. at 52; see also F. White Dep. at 170 (stating he perceived no marital problems between defendants).)" (Carnes 2003:13).

No GJ Indictment.

1. Insufficient Evidence. "On October 13, 1999, the grand jury was discharged by District Attorney Hunter with no indictment issued. (SMF P 91; PSMF P 91.) The District Attorney, and all other prosecutors involved in the proceedings, believed at that time that there was insufficient evidence to bring charges against any person, including defendants John and Patsy Ramsey, in connection with the murder. (SMF PP 91-92; PSMF PP 91-92.)" (Carnes 2003:34).
2. Grand Jury Did Not Think Parents Capable of Such Injuries. In a 2006 CourtTV show, a female Grand Jury member was interviewed. According to Internet poster Evening2, this individual said that "the person who presented the testimony having the greatest impact was the coroner when he described the injuries that were inflicted upon JonBenet, and I think she specifically mentioned the head injury. The GJ said she (they) just couldn't believe that parents could inflict such injuries on their child."
Movie Lines in RN. Lin Wood asserted the Ramseys had not seen any of the movies from which lines were allegedly borrowed, including Speed, Ransom and Dirty Harry. Internet poster argues: "The number of details taken from Dirty Harry, as well as the minutiae, like repeating 'she dies' 3 times is enough to eliminate the Ramseys as perps. It would be impossible to remember this many details from any movie, let alone an old movie after you've just killed your daughter. This murder was planned, probably well in advance,and by someone who writes and watches alot of movies, at least crime movies."
Mindhunters Book Not in Ramsey House. It has been alleged that Ramseys had Mindhunter in their home and that this might have given them ideas about how to stage the crime scene. However:
1. Internet poster says the "book was not found in the home nor was it taken into evidence by BPD."
2. Internet poster claims "Lin Wood stated unequivocally that the Ramseys did NOT possess JD's book "Mindhunter"."
3. Internet poster has stated: "We've all seen the evidence lists and Mindhunter is not on the lists. John Douglas went through the house and did not see his book among those in the bedroom--he even mentioned it during one of his radio shows because he specifically looked for it."
4. Internet poster has asserted: "John denied he had the book. No one could produce a copy or even a photo of a copy."

False Accusations by Media Against Ramseys

The Globe, Shapiro Expose. "Jeffrey Scott Shapiro investigated the JonBenet Ramsey case for the Globe from 1997 until 1999 when he reported his employers to the FBI."
His expose uncovered a lot of the misleading information promoted by The Globe.
1. Shifting Theories of the Case. "At 23 years of age, I was recruited as the lead investigator on the JonBenet Ramsey case for the Globe tabloid. My job was to find information that would support my editors' claims that John Ramsey was a pedophile who murdered his daughter after sexually molesting her. One year later, the newspaper's editors reversed their claim and accused his wife, Patsy, instead. A year after that, they changed their story once more and falsely accused the couple's 9-year-old son, Burke, who had already been publicly cleared by the police."
2. Globe Interest in Ramsey Prosecution. "It became clear to me that it was in the Globe's interest to see the Ramseys prosecuted. I first realized this when my editor, Tony Frost, confided to me that if the family were exonerated, the Globe could be found liable for millions of dollars from defamation suits. 'There must be an indictment,' Frost said of the Ramseys. 'Otherwise we're finished, all of us, every single last one of us.' In a later conversation, Frost admitted, 'The Globe, and Tony Frost in particular, have more reason to go for the Ramseys than the police have." The Examiner Tabloid Tactics. Shapiro reported on the deceptive tactics employed by The Globe to make the Ramseys look guilty:
3. Reporting False Information to Authorities. "I knew that the tabloids sometimes reported false information to the authorities. This was their way of maintaining some control over the investigation so that the police would focus more on the Ramseys rather than an intruder."
4. Payments for Fictitious Quotes. "I also found that many payments to "sources" were not for authentic information but, rather, financial rewards to people who agreed to accept attribution for "quotes" that tabloid reporters had already written."
5. Paying Sources for False Claims to Authorities. "Sometimes, when the tabloids couldn't find a new witness to interview, they often paid a "source" to report their anti-Ramsey claims to the police or FBI, giving the story more credibility. My editors did virtually anything they could to say the authorities were investigating their "shocking new scenario," when those claims were often baseless and false --wasting investigators' precious time."

National Enquirer Known Fabrications

John Ramsey Remarriage in 2006. "The National Enquirer says John Ramsey, father of JonBenet, is set to remarry. Well, that's what it says on the cover. The story inside reports that he's shopping for a new wife after Patsy gave him her blessing on her deathbed to find someone new. "He's the hottest widower around," said a family friend to the tab. "Believe me, a lot of women are clamoring to take care of that man." (Denver Post 07/24/2006).

Parents Falsely Accused of Murdering Their Children There are at least 10 cases of parents convicted of murdering their children whose convictions were later overturned based on either a confession or other evidence that called into question the original determination of their guilt. Example :
Riley Fox (Age 3, Wilmington, IL: 2004). Riley Fox was an American three-year-old girl who was reported missing in Wilmington, Illinois. Later that same day the girl was found dead in Forsythe Woods County Forest Preserve, a public park that was just a few miles from the family’s residence. The girl was found face down in a creek in the park. She had been bound, gagged, and sexually assaulted and then drowned. The night of the disappearance, Kevin, Riley's father, had picked up his kids from their grandmother's house around 1 A.M.. Too tired to carry his children up to bed, he laid Riley down on the couch and Tyler, Riley's older brother, down on the living room chair. He then went to his room, watched TV and went to bed around 2:30, according to his statements to police.
The next morning, Kevin Fox was awoken by Tyler. Tyler informed him that Riley was gone, Kevin searched the entire house for Riley. He noticed that the front door and screen were open. Kevin went next door to a friend of Riley’s to see if they had seen the little girl. When the neighbors had not seen Riley, he then called the police. Kevin Fox, the girl's father, was initially charged in the young girl's murder, based almost solely on a videotaped confession that he had killed Riley. He spent eight months in prison before he was cleared of all charges due to DNA evidence and the confession was ruled out based on coercion.
The killer left a pair of mud-covered shoes at Forsythe Woods County Forest Preserve, which were collected by police. But the police never followed up on this piece of evidence. The shoes had the name Eby written on the inside, the last name of the actual culprit. They overlooked many other important case facts as well. The same night as Riley's abduction another house on the same block was burglarized.,
Scott Eby was later charged on five counts of first-degree murder and one count of predatory sexual assault after DNA evidence linked him to Riley. By the time the police caught up with Eby to charge him in connection with Riley's murder, he was serving two consecutive seven-year sentences. Eby later confessed to killing Riley after first breaking into another home on the same block as the Foxes'. Eby said he cut through the back screen door of the home and then pushed the door in. He found Riley lying on the couch and decided to kidnap her when he saw that her father was asleep. He said that he put Riley into his car and drove her to the park where he assaulted her on the floor of a restroom in the park. Then he killed her by drowning her in a nearby creek within the park. He subsequently pled guilty to Riley's murder and received a life sentence without the possibility of parole. Scott Eby was on parole and lived only about a mile from the Foxes' home at the time of Riley's murder. The Fox family later sued the state of Illinois and won $15 million in a federal civil rights lawsuit, which was later reduced to $8.5 million.              (c) 2023