The murder of six-year-old blonde beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey has been the fixation of macabre fascination since the case broke in 1996. You can’t write stuff like this, the day after Christmas in a mansion in Boulder, Colorado there lay little JonBenet Ramsey bludgeoned and strangled under a white sheet in her basement. The case was a media frenzy from the day it broke, however, nearly 21 years later the case remains cold with no signs of heating up. The police had several suspects over the years, including a creepy Santa Clause and a teacher named John Mark Carr who confessed he was there when JonBenet died. However salacious these claims may be, the police never found evidence that could link any suspects definitively to the little girl’s untimely death. However, John, Patsy and Burke Ramsey remained under a cloud of suspicion for the alleged involvement in their daughter and sister’s murder. In this article, we’ll take you to the fifteen eeriest things the Ramsey’s don’t want you to know about this age old homicide.
16. John Finds JonBenet’s body
The police department that responded to the kidnapping call, turned homicide was the local police department in Boulder, Colorado. The Boulder Police Department was insurmountably unprepared for JonBenet’s murder, used to handling one, maybe two homicides per year. This so thoroughly contaminated the eventual crime scene, as the police maintained literally zero control over the scene. The Sargent of the Boulder Police Department responded to the initial kidnapping 911 call, however, left with another detective for a meeting with the FBI before the body was found. This would be a fatal mistake on the part of the police.
One of the responding officers on the scene was beginning to notice that JonBenet’s father, John Ramsey, had become visibly antsy due to the circumstance. The officer then appoints John Ramsey to look through the Ramsey home in search of anything that might seem out of place, instructing him to start from top to bottom. However, curiously, he started in the basement where he inadvertently found JonBenet’s dead body in the basement. He then picks her body up and carries her upstairs and lays her in front of the officers, literally disturbing any and all potential evidence the crime scene may have contained.
15. The Ransom Demand Was the Same as John’s Christmas Bonus
The ransom note that the Ramseys have always alleged was written and left by the intruder that ultimately killed JonBenet, has always raised red flags to investigators. Before we get into the nitty gritty details of the three-page note, let’s first look into one of the strangest elements of the ransom note: the demand left by the supposed kidnapper. The alleged kidnapper who penned the now infamous note demanded $118,000.
This amount is peculiar because if the Ramseys were specifically targeted, which they must have been because there is no evidence of other crimes with similar circumstances anywhere near Boulder, the amount is simply trivial. Had the kidnapper specifically targeted the Ramseys for their wealth, which is possible, they would have naturally researched the family and their assets and attempted to extort the maximum amount possible. $118,000 was simply far less than a kidnapper could have charged the Ramseys for the safe return of their daughter. Even more odd, the amount of the ransom was the exact amount that John Ramsey had received as a bonus that year. It is hard to imagine that anyone would know that amount, besides John and Patsy Ramsey.
14. Ramsey’s Close Personal Friends Put on Gag Order
It is no secret that the Ramseys were less than enthusiastic about speaking to investigators, quite frankly this really isn’t that unbelievable on its own because the police proved their incompetence from the very beginning. However, the part that mystified police was when there were rumors that the Ramseys had also barred friends and family from speaking to police. This is unusual for the parents of a 6-year-old murder victim because it seems to suggest they are uninterested in contributing any information that might help with the investigation. This seems to suggest the gag order they put on their friends and family was due to the fact that they might unknowingly offer up information that would implicate them. It is one thing to not want to speak to police on your own because they have effectively botched the case from the beginning, and they wrongly suspect you. However, if they are completely free of any involvement, why wouldn’t they want as many contributions of information to be given to the police as possible?
13. The Eerie 911 Call
The 911 call made by Patsy Ramsey from start to finish seemed strange to investigators when they played it back. However, the end of the 911 call held a potential missing piece to the puzzle: what was said after Patsy thought she had hung up the phone. After she relays information to the 911 operator, she immediately hangs up. This is particularly unusual of a caller under this amount of distress because most people stay on the line until police get there, often not feeling safe until they arrive.
Expert audio engineer Ed Kaufman examined the strange, nearly inaudible end to the now infamous 911 call on The Case of: JonBenet Ramsey. He goes through several steps to dig out the audio, including isolation of only the vocals and background noise reduction. When this is done, you can hear who investigators believe to be John Ramsey say “we’re not speaking to you”. Then it appears that a female voice says “help me Jesus, what did you do?” and finally another smaller voice, believed to be the voice of Burke saying “what did you find”. If these findings are accurate, this seems to obviously indicate the Ramseys know more than they are telling police.
12. The Ramsey’s Try to Throw Suspicion Off of Themselves
During the interview police conducted with both Patsy and John Ramsey, they literally do everything they can to divulge and throw suspicion off of themselves. It is obvious to anyone watching the interrogation tapes, as it must have been to the Ramseys that the police were highly suspicious of their involvement. This causes a strange reaction from the Ramseys, not only do they seem combative and uncooperative, unwilling to shed light on perplexing details. The Ramseys also seem to feel the need to throw suspicion off themselves, a strange priority when they are being interviewed about their daughter’s murder. They implicate nearly every single person they know, even their closest friends Fleet and Priscilla White. The Ramseys were at the White’s Christmas party on Christmas night, which is where they had arrived home from the night of the murder. The Whites were looked into and ultimately cleared because of their air tight alibi.
11. Patsy Ramsey’s Telling Slip Up?
By now it’s clear that the case of JonBenet Ramsey is so muddled and distorted that if the Ramseys had not actually committed the murder themselves, they might have aided in a cover up. Some say that JonBenet’s older brother Burke, who was nine at the time of the murder, may have accidentally killed her and her parents orchestrated a cover up. An interest piece of evidence that supports this claim is that when police arrived on scene, Patsy Ramsey was wearing the same clothes as she was wearing the night before at the Whites’ Christmas party.
Patsy had claimed that she woke up that morning and simply put on the same clothes because it was early. However, considering Patsy’s stature and wealth, how likely is it that she wouldn’t simply walk to her large wardrobe and pick out something clean. Even more strange, Patsy claimed this was before she discovered the ransom note, so she wouldn’t have been in any hurry to get dressed. Some investigators think this is an indication of Patsy’s role in the cover up, indicating that she had never taken the clothes off because she was up all night.
10. JonBenet Was Strangled With Patsy’s Paintbrush
JonBenet had received severe blunt force trauma to the back of the head, but she had also been strangled. Oddly enough, the garrote used to strangle JonBenet was made from a paintbrush that belonged to Patsy Ramsey that was stored nearby. A garrote is a strangulation device, assembled of some type of chord and some type of stick that effectively strangles someone. The red fibers of Patsy Ramsey’s Christmas sweater from the night before and morning of the murder were also found on JonBenet’s body. However, this is not necessarily incriminating considering it could have easily been transferred innocently at the party or afterward. However, as mentioned previously, the intruder theory suggests the Ramseys were specifically targeted. Had they been specifically targeted why would the intruder, and supposed murderer, not bring their own weapon? How did they even know that there would be anything in the home that they could use to kill JonBenet?
9. The Ramseys May Have Invited the Killer into Their Home
Many have alleged that the Ramseys predisposed their daughter to negative public attention, which most contend is the reason behind the intruder theory. However, most believe this predisposition stems from Patsy involving JonBenet in beauty pageants. Patsy was a former West Virginia beauty queen herself, expecting JonBenet to follow in her footsteps, dressing her up in lavish costumes and makeup. Most thing Patsy involving JonBenet in beauty pageants was a deliberate attempt to sexualize her child, unknowingly attracting pedophiles. However, millions of little girls are involved in beauty pageants, and were not brutally murdered the way JonBenet was. Even though this was a fervent claim by the media, it doesn’t seem as plausible as another thing the Ramseys could’ve done to predispose their child.
Chillingly, just days before the brutal slaying of JonBenet Ramsey, the Ramsey family had participated in sort of a holiday Christmas walkthrough of their home in their neighborhood. The lavish mansions were on display for Christmas, and it’s estimated that hundreds of people walked through the Ramsey home for a tour. Could the Ramseys have unwittingly exposed their daughter and the layout of their home to a pedophile who would later return to murder JonBenet?
8. The Other Murder Weapon Could’ve Also Come From the Ramsey Home
Most remember the brutal murder of JonBenet as being caused by the garrote used to strangle her. However, JonBenet had other injuries as well. The six-year-old beauty queen also had a sizeable blow to the back of her head. The blow had been delivered with such force it actually cracked her skull, and bruised her brain. The skull fracture had a distinct pattern that suggested she was hit with something cylindrical with a flat top. Independent investigators have long since concluded that the thing that most likely caused the blow to the back of the head was a large metal flashlight. Coincidentally, family and friends recall the Ramseys having a large black metal flashlight. Some investigators alleged that this was further evidence of the Ramseys involvement, because had they been specifically targeted by an intruder it is likely they would have brought their own weapons. It is also peculiar that she was essentially fatally injured twice, investigators are unsure which injury ultimately caused the death. Some say that JonBenet was accidentally hit in the back of the head with the flashlight, and her death was covered up to look like an intruder murder.
7. JonBenet’s Last Meal
Many who feel the murderer did not reside in the Ramsey home almost always refer to two strange round burn marks found on her neck and back. The perfect circle burns were ultimately thought to be marks from a stun gun. Those who theorize an intruder killed JonBenet, alleged that these burns came from the stun gun that was used to subdue her. Had the Ramseys had anything to do with JonBenet’s murder, they wouldn’t have had to stun gun her, because she would have gone with them willingly. However, there is evidence to suggest the potential stun gun marks might have been yet another element of staging when the police found something peculiar in her stomach. There was evidence of pineapple in her stomach that was not yet digested, suggesting she had eaten the pineapple shortly before she died. The Ramseys have always maintained that after returning from the Whites’ Christmas party JonBenet went straight to bed and they did not feed her the pineapple. This suggests that someone JonBenet knew led her downstairs to eat the pineapple, and the mysterious marks must have been administered after because she could not have consumed the pineapple after being stun gunned.
6. Creepy Santa Clause
Yet another freakish side show in this case was the Ramseys’ personal Santa Clause, Bill McReynolds. Bill McReynolds was a retired journalism professor with a very distinct look: he had a long white beard and a round face with glasses, he was Santa Clause. The Ramseys had hired McReynolds to be the Santa Clause as their Christmas parties, and John himself remembers JonBenet worshipping McReynolds as the real Santa Clause. The Ramseys suggest to investigators that McReynolds might be their man because shortly before JonBenet’s murder, she led him on a tour through their house. Even more chilling, there are reports that McReynolds had given a note to JonBenet saying “something special will happen to you after Christmas”. As if that wasn’t strange enough, McReynolds wife had reportedly written a screenplay prior to the murder about a little girl being tortured and murdered in her basement. Sound familiar?
5. Ramsey’s Talk to CNN…. Before the Police
It is no secret that when it comes to the case of slain beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey, the police botched the investigation from the beginning. The local police department’s incompetence would forever mar this case and its nonexistent outcome. From the beginning however, police insisted that the Ramseys were suspiciously uncooperative, refusing to sit down for a formal interview. However, in 1997, just a few short weeks after JonBenet’s murder, the Ramsey’s would do something extremely peculiar. They would discuss the case of their murdered daughter for the very first time, but not with police, on CNN. The Ramseys had agreed to do an interview with CNN before they had even sat down to have an interview with police. Body language experts have long since criticized the Ramseys on air appearance, saying it feels forced, rehearsed and not genuine. In this interview, most famously the clip above, the Ramseys are very obviously trying to assert the theory that a madman on the loose had murdered their daughter.
4. Burke’s Telling Interview
Another peculiar mystery figure in the JonBenet Ramsey murder case was her brother Burke, who was nine years old at the time of her murder. Some have theorized that Burke may have had something to do with JonBenet’s murder, maybe accidentally killing her. Some think the Ramseys covered this up and made the scene look sexually motivated so that investigators would look for the murderer outside of the home. Some interesting validity to this theory comes from Burke’s interview with a child psychologist for the police department, just weeks after his sister’s murder. In the interview Burke seems eerily controlled and detached, never once crying or expressing concern for his sister. When asked about his new life as an only child, Burke simply replies that now he just plays video games. Even more chilling, Burke asserts that he heard the commotion going on downstairs but claims he simply stayed in his bed, seemingly not scared nor concerned.
3. Burke Was Allegedly Violent
In an interview with one of Patsy Ramsey’s friend, who was later annexed for talking to police and seemingly for helping with the investigation, again potentially pointed the finger at Burke Ramsey. The family friend insinuates that once JonBenet became involved in beauty pageants, she became even more so the apple of her parents’ eye. She suggests that Burke was jealous of JonBenet and all the attention she received, claiming there simply wasn’t enough attention for the two of them. She recalls Burke having violent outbursts, she deemed as cries for attention. However, chillingly, she claims that Burke had once given JonBenet a black eye by hitting her in the face with a golf club. She said JonBenet even still brandished a small scar below one of her eyes on her cheek from the incident. This again supports the theory that Burke may have been the one who accidentally killed JonBenet, and the Ramseys, fearing the loss of another child ensued in a cover up.
2. Evidence of Coaching
After the Ramseys had finally agreed to be separated and interviewed by police, months had passed since JonBenet’s murder. However, even though they were separated, their stories seemed to match perfectly with virtually no discrepancies. Why is this a problem? The eerie similarities between the Ramseys stories suggested to police that they were coached.
When police confront Patsy Ramsey with the notion that a handwriting expert claimed that Patsy’s handwriting was astonishingly similar to the handwriting in the ransom note, it raised the hair on the back of their necks. Though Patsy and John were in separate rooms, when confronted about the ransom note, they both quipped that perhaps the ransom note was written by a woman. A strange conclusion for both of them to draw on their own, suggesting they had discussed what they would say to investigators. Even more chilling in Burke’s interview, to some questions he responds “not that I recall”. This was the exact same phrase Patsy used in her interviews, suggesting to investigators that Burke had been coached by Patsy.
1. Patsy’s Handwriting Sample Matched the Ransom Note
Perhaps the most convincing and terrifying evidence of all was the ransom note. There were several things that raised red flags to investigators in the note, starting with the ransom demand. However, that wasn’t all. The ransom note was a staggering two and a half pages, much longer than any killer or kidnapper would need to make a ransom demand, suggesting to investigators that it was fabricated and simply an oversell. Additionally, ink comparison showed that the pen used to write the note came from a pen on Patsy’s desk, the paper the note was written on came from Patsy’s desk as well. Investigators thought it was odd that an intruder would spend so much time in the house writing such a long note, without fear of discovery. Also, the note was placed on a back staircase, an intimate detail that suggested whoever wrote it knew the Ramsey’s mainly used that particular staircase. However, the most compelling of all? Several handwriting experts have concluded that with over two hundred similarities between Patsy’s writing samples and the ransom note, that she was the one who wrote it.