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Sexual Predators

Michael Helgoth (Boots/Bootman)

Michael Helgoth was a 26-year-old electrician who worked in a nearby auto salvage yard. Two theories have been advanced regarding his involvement in JBR's death.

Helgoth & Gigax

Some of those who believe Helgoth was involved also think he may have had an accomplice originally named SX who was a known sexual offender. SX was subsequently identified as John Steven Gigax . A documentary by Michael Tracey, a professor at School of Journalism and Mass Communication at University of Colorado Boulder, summarized the case against Helgoth and a partner [later identified as John Steven Gigax: see below for the evidence for and against Gigax]. Helgoth & Left-Handed Partner. Nehemiah has posted here a brief synopsis of how Helgoth and a left-handed partner committed this crime.

Regardless of whether he did it alone or with an accomplice, Helgoth had a motive (a property dispute with Ramseys); and the means (he owned a stun gun and Hi-tech boots) and the opportunity to kill JBR. He also owned dogs whose fur was consistent with that found on JBR's body and a hat with the initials SBTC. Michael Helgoth knew the Ramseys from a property dispute and this may have provided some motivation for the crime. The Ramsey's family private investigator, Ollie Gray, referred to Helgoth as a "hellraiser."

A Stun Gun gun was found near Mr. Helgoth's body, as well as boots with a "HI-TEC logo like that left on the basement floor of defendants' home. (SMF P 281; PSMF P 281.)" (Carnes 2003:36). HI-TEC Boots. An Internet poster says she has sources who say "Helgoth's Hi-Tec boot appears to be a perfect match, same size and even has a dent/chip in the sole at the exact same spot the print does." Helgoth owned two wolfdog puppies whose fur, according to the Tracey documentary, "exactly matched" the 2 different colors of animal hairs found on JBR's body. A hat with S-B-T-C Initials, a baseball cap with the letters s-b-t-c was found near Helgoth's body.

Helgoth made suspicious Statements. According to Trip DeMuth, one of the original prosecutors in this case, Helgoth "had reportedly made statements to a friend, very similar to the types of statements that we're hearing about today in the press with the arrest of John Karr.

Helgoth's death was suspicious; he committed suicide on Valentine's Day, 1997. This was suspicious for two reasons:
Timing of Suicide. Helgoth committed suicide just one day after Alex Hunter announced in a press conference: "I want to say something to the person or persons who took this baby from us, the list of suspects narrows. Soon there will be no-one on the list but you." As Rolling Stone put it "It’s been speculated that once the 26-year-old Helgoth caught wind that he could be a suspect in the case (officials found a boot print allegedly similar to his near the Ramsey's home), he committed suicide before anyone could get to him."
"Suicide a Homicide?" Because of some peculiarities shown in the autopsy, some further believe that this accomplice, worried that Helgoth might confess, killed Helgoth and made it look like a suicide.

Michael Helgoth's DNA was not a match with DNA collected at the crime scene. His Suicide Appears Genuine. An Internet poster, who claimed to have been an acquaintance of Helgoth's for 1 -2 years, wrote "I was at Mike's funeral, and it was discussed among friends there that He had committed suicide because of a failed relationship with a girlfreind." sic The suicide admittedly occurred the day right after Hunter's warning to the killer, but it also occurred on Valentine's Day, which Cook believes is noteworthy as a signal of Helgoth's true motivations.

Hi-Tec Boots Don't Match. BPD Chief Mark Beckner said in November 2000 that Helgoth's boots did not match the footprints in Ramsey basement; private investigator Ollie Gray "is not convinced. He said Beckner did not give him specifics about how the boots were compared to the partial print, what tests were run, or who police interviewed." A large number of Boulder residents are hikers, so Hi-Tec boots could be matched to probably thousands of people; the fact that Helgoth happened to own a pair therefore is not significant.

An Internet poster, who claims to have known Helgoth and his left-handed roommate, has asserted that "the man who raped and murdered JonBenet Ramsey also murdered Michael Helgoth over the division of their spoils of their numerous burglaries."

John Steven Gigax (Possible Helgoth Accomplice)

According to the Tracey documentary, Gigax (who was not specifically named, but whose identity was later deduced from documents shown in the documentary) was an accomplice of Helgoth's. Gigax had been convicted of sexually assaulting a barely underaged girl and had a history of violence. Gigax's name surfaced following the Michael Tracey documentary, which displayed his police record on air. The documentary asserted "Helgoth’s associate was convicted following a stabbing here on the trailer park. Witnesses were too frightened to give evidence but court documents summarised his criminal record as “violence -- history of sexual assault”. They also reveal that he was a convicted pedophile. He was imprisoned in the 1980s for a sexual assault on a child." Gigax lived in a trailer park very close to Helgoth and had worked in the Ramsey house. However, after the Tracey documentary, it was learned that Gigax reportedly was not in Boulder on December 25 or 26 and hence is not implicated in JBR's death. "Mills and Tracey are both under the impression that he was "eliminated" by a DNA test after the documentary aired, but that, too, is erroneous." But this appears to be because police accepted his alibi (see below), hence he likely never was tested.

The available evidence shows that Gigax was not even in Colorado on the night of the murder. "Gigax offered to send Bennett sales receipts that proved he was in Indiana over Christmas 1996. He also had a dozen witnesses who'd seen him there on Christmas Day." Some question the accuracy of the Tracey documentary given that Gigax was not even in Colorado on the night of the murder. Reportedly, "Tom Bennett of the Boulder D.A’s office told Mr. Gigax he was never a suspect and the Boulder D.A was never looking for him to question him." "Gigax first learned of his sudden infamy shortly after the documentary aired. 'People I didn't know from Adam were e-mailing me, saying I was this prime suspect in the Ramsey case,' he recalls. 'I called the Boulder DA's office and talked to Tom Bennett. He said I was not a suspect, that I had never been a suspect.'

Gigax's principal accuser in the documentary is John Kenady, but as shown below, Kenady himself could have as easily been Helgoth's accomplice based on his own criminal background, including a sexual assault on an underaged teen, his apparent preoccupation with the case and his proclivity for pointing fingers at others.

John Kenady (Possible Helgoth Accomplice)

John Kenady had a long criminal record.

  • 1. Sexual Assault on Child. "Kenady has an ancient conviction for sexual assault on a child, which he says involved a consensual relationship with a teenager."
  • 2. Trespassing. "Kenady was also arrested in 2000 for breaking into Helgoth's house and pleaded guilty to trespassing. He says he merely wanted to preserve evidence."
  • 3. Stole Hi-Tec Boots from Helgoth? He claimed to have found Hi-Tech boots in Helgoth's house. But he allegedly stole these, among other items.
  • 4. Attended Patsy Ramsey Funeral? Internet poster asserted that according to the National Enquirer, Kenady attended the funeral of Patsy Ramsey.

Sought to Cast Suspicion on Others:

  • 1. Michael Helgoth. "Kenady is convinced that Helgoth's death was murder rather than suicide. The Boulder police disagree with him." "The possibility that Helgoth's death, which occurred on Valentine's Day, might have been a suicide related to girlfriend problems also doesn't dissuade him. "I think there were three people involved in this, possibly four," he says. "Mike would say, 'Maybe I should just shoot myself now and get it over with.' I got a pretty good idea he was into something he shouldn't have been."
  • 2. John Steven Gigax. As a witness in the the third Tracey documentary (paid $200 for his "inconvenience"), Kenady later cast suspicion on John Gigax. "Gigax's principal accuser in the documentary is John Kenady, a mechanic and tow-truck driver who introduced Gigax to Helgoth." But Gigax claims that Kenady knew that Gigax had moved from Boulder to Indiana months before JBR died: "The people pointing the finger at me and saying I'm a bad, scary guy were both aware that I'd moved. One of them called me to tell me that Helgoth had killed himself."              (c) 2023