The 1996 Boulder murder of JonBenét Ramsey was one of the biggest stories in the country for years, and questions about the unsolved case continue to be asked, albeit at a lower volume than was heard a decade and a half ago. Note that former detective A. James Kolar's Foreign Faction: Who Really Kidnapped JonBenét?, which largely rejects the intruder theory that led to JonBenét's family being cleared, is being self-published -- yet it still garnered a big spread in The Daily Beast.
The Beast piece is authored by Carol McKinley, who's covered the story since the beginning for a variety of outlets (KOA and Fox News, most prominently). In "New Clues in JonBenet Ramsey Murder," she focuses on a handful of discoveries made by Kolar, who delved into the slaying between 2004 and 2006 as an investigator for the Boulder County District Attorney's Office.
Among them: an intact cobweb across a window, as seen in a video taken at the scene of the crime that's on view below. Some theorists believe an intruder entered the Ramsey's Boulder home through that window, but Kolar feels the web makes that improbable, if not impossible.
In addition, he offers his view about two marks found on JonBenét's body. Investigators working for the Ramsey family -- father John, late mother Patsy and brother Burke, who was an elementary schooler at the time of his younger sibling's death -- have floated the opinion that they could have been caused by a stun gun used by an intruder. In contrast, Kolar thinks they were made by a child's toy found in the basement.
McKinley's article includes quotes from other principals in the Ramsey investigation, including ex-Boulder DA Mary Lacy, who ultimately released a statement exonerating family members from suspicion in the killing. She recalls an evidentiary presentation Kolar made back in 2006 that caused viewers to roll their eyes: "This was a person who had gotten to the point that he was obsessed," she says.
Likewise, neither current DA Stan Garnett nor Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner offer the slightest indication that they see the case as suddenly having been cracked. As for longtime Ramsey attorney Lin Wood, he says, "I firmly believe this murder will be solved by the DNA evidence. It was the DNA evidence that led to the public exoneration of the Ramsey family by the district attorney's office [under Lacy], and it will be DNA that one day identifies the killer of this child."
There's another possibility as well: The case might never be solved, allowing future generations to join in the speculation that's still percolating nearly sixteen years after the shocking crime.
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Here's the video featuring the cobweb, which appears at about the 3:36 mark.
More from our Follow That Story archive: "Michael Tracey, CU prof in Ramsey family-John Mark Karr debacle: Negative job evaluations."