The Terrible Murder of a Little Girl Named JonBenet On Christmas 1996 Is It Possible That Mom Was the Killer 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey had no idea that Christmas of 1996 would be her last, possibly not even her murderer. Sometimes people lose control of situations and act out of rage. Things happen that aren’t meant to and in a panic we do our best to cover things up to avoid the consequences. On the night of December 25, 1996 the Ramsey family went to a Christmas party. The Ramsey’s had planned to leave the city of Boulder, Colorado to fly to Michigan the following day. Patsy Ramsey put JonBenet and her brother, Burke, to bed and went to inish packing for the trip. The following morning at 5:45 a. m. Patsy reported she was going to wake up JonBenet but did not find her in her bedroom. Instead of finding her daughter she found a note left on the spiral staircase stating that JonBenet had been kidnapped and was being held for a $118,000 ransom which was coincidentally the exact amount of a bonus John Ramsey received earlier that year (Thomas). At 5:52 a. m. Patsy Ramsey placed a call to 911 reporting her child was kidnapped. She also called several close friends to have them come stay by her side to comfort her despite specific nstructions not to contact anyone in the ransom note. It was reported that Patsy Ramsey was found in the same red turtleneck and black slacks that she had worn the night before to the Christmas party. The police were treating the case as a kidnapping until later in the day when John Ramsey along with Fleet White, a family friend, were instructed to search the house for anything unusual. They found the body and John screamed “Oh my God, Oh my God”. She had been strangled with a garrote, and her mouth had been covered with duct tape (Montaldo). Fleet ran upstairs yelling “Call an ambulance! ” John carried her lifeless body pstairs and laid her on the floor. At that time when John was yelling Patsy did not move from her seat in the sun room to see what had been discovered. The detective on the scene moved the body again and laid it in front of the Christmas tree. Patsy then covered the body with a blanket. An autopsy later revealed that JonBenet was killed by strangulation and a skull fracture to the head. John Ramsey had broken a basement window during the summer when he was locked out of his house. He never had the window fixed. Spider webs were intact around the window suggesting the killer did not access the house through the window and was an nsider (Wegner). The Ramsey immediately sought legal representation. The Boulder P. D. would refer to the many lawyers as “Team Ramsey” (Thomas). Following legal advice, the Ramsey would not submit to interviews requested by the police. The Ramsey family stated they fully cooperated with the authorities. The possibility that Patsy Ramsey murdered her daughter unintentionally is very likely and John Ramsey chose to help cover for her. Patsy Ramsey was a former Miss West Virginia. She had high expectations for her own daughter as a future beauty queen. JonBenet had a problem with wetting the bed, which as a parent can be very frustrating.
Steve Thomas, an investigator on the murder, suggests that JonBenet could have had an accident on that Christmas night and Patsy could have reacted in a parental rage. By no means of wanting to kill her child she struck JonBenet out of frustration causing her to smack her head on the tub or a countertop therefore causing the trauma to the head. In an effort to make the accidental murder appear to be something other than what it was she tried to make it look like someone had strangled her and proceeded to tie her up in an effort to avoid dealing with the legal consequences. A handwriting analysis was done on the ransom note.
Patsy Ramsey could not be eliminated as a possible writer of the note. Twenty of the Twenty six letters of the alphabet matched her handwriting (Thomas). Is it a coincidence that the ransom note listed the exact amount of ransom that John Ramsey had received as a bonus that year? Very few people knew this information but Patsy Ramsey would have known. There was also a practice ransom note found in the kitchen of the Ramsey home. The ransom note had been written on a tablet of paper owned by the Ramsey’s. Patsy had reported she had done some packing prior to going to bed that Christmas night (Ramsey).
Yet Patsy was found in the same outfit she had worn to the party the night before. This information suggests that she had night actually gone to bed otherwise she would have been dressed for bed. Could she have been up all night trying to figure out how she was going to cover up the death of her daughter? If your child were murdered then as a parent you would do anything to assist the police in finding the murderer. Not in the Ramsey case. John and Patsy Ramsey immediately sought legal protection the very same day their daughter was found murdered in their basement. They dodged police interviews for several months fter the murder and would not cooperate with the police. The Ramseys would not participate in an interview with the police for many months after the event. This is not the act of innocent parents. Before they were ever suspects they chose to hire lawyers. John Ramsey hired a lawyer for himself, another lawyer for his wife, and also lawyers for all his children and ex-wife. It seems that the Ramsey’s did there best to dodge any contact with the police. Despite instructions from the ransom note, Patsy Ramsey immediately called friends and family to come aid her in her time of distress.
The ransom note clearly stated that “any deviation of their instructions would result in JonBenet being beheaded”. The instructions were not to contact anybody yet she ignored it. If Patsy Ramsey did not know that her daughter had already been dead she would have chose to be more discreet and followed the instructions of the ransom note more closely. John and Patsy stated that 10-year-old Burke never woke up until after police arrived. Later in the investigation police learned from listening to the 911 call that Burke was awake and had asked “What did you find” prior to Patsy hanging up the phone (Thomas).
Before police could ask Burke any questions the Ramsey’s sent him over to a family friends home. This was prior to the body being found. If the Ramsey’s thought their daughter had been kidnapped then why would they send their 10-year-old son away from police protection and out of their own sight? Wouldn’t a parent be worried that the kidnappers might try to take him also? The home of a family friend would not be safer than police protection nor away from the parent’s sight. Julie Beavers pointed out that DNA that was found on the body was that of an unknown male. The Boulder City Police were not prepared for the murder.
The police made many mistakes. The first was letting so many friends and family members come in and out of the house. They did not seal the area off and treat the house as a crime scene. The crime scene had been contaminated from being moved so many times and covered with a blanket (Maloney). The foreign hair that was found on JonBenet’s body could have come from all the movement of the body or from the blanket that was placed on her. It may not have necessarily come from the murderer. The crime scene and the body had been too badly contaminated for the police to do a thorough investigation.
Everything had been compromised. Patsy Ramsey knew what happened to JonBenet the night she was murdered. Nothing adds up in this case. The acts of the Ramsey’s never seemed to be to help the police solve the crime. Is it because they did not want it solved? So much time has passed since JonBenet Ramsey was murdered the only way it will be solved is if the killer confesses. Patsy Ramsey died of ovarian cancer on June 24, 2006 so there will never be a confession. Works Cited Bardsley, Marilyn. “Someone Outside the House. ” 2002. CrimeLibrary. com. 25 Feb. 2008 . Beavers, J. Personal Interview. 6 Apr. 2008. Maloney, J. J. and J. Patrick O’Connor. “Suspision Mounts. ” 14 Apr. 2003 Maloney, J. J. and J. Patrick O’Connor. “The Murder of JonBenet Ramsey. ” 14 Apr. 2003 Montaldo, Charles. “JonBenet Ramsey Investigation. ” About. com. 25 Feb. 2008 . Ramsey, John, and Patsy Ramsey. “The Death of Innocence. ” Nashville: Nelson, 2000. Thomas, Steve and Don Davis. “JonBenet: Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation. ” NewYork: St. Martins, 2000. Wegner, Gerald. “Dr. Gerald Wegner Aids Ramsey Case. ” Pest Control 67. 10 Oct. 1999 : 92.