Sunday, October 27, 2013

No Justice for JonBenet

As mentioned in my first blog I have a real problem with unsolved murders.  JonBenet's is unsettling for so many reasons. 

The 6 year old daughter of John and Patsy Ramsey of Boulder, CO died from strangulation and blunt force trauma Dec 26, 1996. The family was affluent. The media went nuts. Their reporting was mostly speculation and half truths. They were quick to point fingers at John and Patsy. Even 9 year old brother Burke was a suspect, at least by the tabloids. Patsy did it because JonBenet wet the bed! No, John did it because he sexually abused her and thought she would tell. No. Burke did it because he was jealous of her. Each accusation more absurd than the one before but we still followed the reports, as pitifully inaccurate as they were. 

The child was pretty, without the garish wigs, makeup and $500 pageant dresses. In K Mart pajamas with wet hair, she was pretty. What went so terribly wrong is still an unsolved mystery. I'm finding it hard to write about it in a sensible way because it just didn't make any sense. 

For starters, the ransom note didn't make sense. If you write a ransom note, you take the kid and hold her til you get the dough. One theory is that it was in fact, a kidnapping gone wrong. The writer demanded $118,000, the amount of a bonus John received that year. Logically, that should narrow the suspects down to a small circle of people who knew that. 

The investigation didn't make sense. This was the only murder in Boulder that year. They weren't experienced in handling much crime at all, let alone one this heinous. They could write traffic tickets and scold teenagers for smoking weed, but this was way out of their league. They should have called in some Detroit homicide investigators. Maybe then they would have had a chance of solving it. 

The crime scene was compromised. It wasn't sealed off for several hours after the first responders arrived. Friends and family of the Ramsey's were in and out of the house. John and two of his friends found JonBenet in a little storage room in the basement.  Of course, they touched her and picked her up, further botching up the scene and forensic evidence. She was duct taped and strangled with items that were not in the Ramsey house. She was wrapped in her own little white blanket. You can't think of the case without imagining the sheer horror the child experienced. Whoever killed her looked in her eyes and saw terror. 

John and Patsy were exonerated when their DNA suggested they were not involved. 

On Oct. 25, 2013 previously sealed documents were opened indicating that a grand jury voted to indict John and Patsy in the murder on charges of child abuse resulting in death and being an accessory to crime. The D.A. dropped it. That is a very uncommon occurrence. Was it because the D.A. was a family friend? Was it because they had money and paid someone off? 

Patsy died of ovarian cancer in 2006. Maybe she has been reunited with the daughter who captivated a nation. Has she apologized to JonBenet? Can you imagine, your child murdered in your home, on your watch? And you didn't protect her? How could you live with yourself? I would cry and hug the child and say, "I'm sorry I wasn't there for you when you needed me," at least ten thousand times. "I should have saved you or died trying."

This murder will probably go unsolved forever. I hate that. I hate that a killer got away with murdering a child in her own home. Maybe he is dead by now and in his own personal hell. Or is he still walking around with a terrible secret from 17 years ago? Somebody knows something!  It is a shame that still there is no justice for JonBenet.