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Nancy Grace

New DNA Test Exonerates Ramsey Family in JonBenet`s Death

Aired July 09, 2008 - 20:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: Breaking news tonight, bombshell in the case of 6- year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey, found strangled, beaten to death, apparently the victim of a brutal sex assault all in the basement of her own Boulder, Colorado, home. Tonight, newly discovered DNA evidence emerges by use of a new and highly sensitive DNA procedure called touch DNA. Will it finally crack the murder case of 6-year-old Colorado beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey? A decade later, still no justice for JonBenet.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Some newly discovered DNA evidence in the JonBenet Ramsey case has surfaced, and apparently, this DNA evidence does not match any of the Ramsey family members, including John Ramsey, Patsy Ramsey or any other immediate family members. You remember JonBenet`s body was found in their family home in Boulder, Colorado, back on December 26, the day after Christmas, in 1996. Since then, the family has been under fire and grilled for being possibly attached to the murder of their daughter.

JOHN RAMSEY, FATHER: I did not kill my daughter, JonBenet.

PATSY RAMSEY, MOTHER: I did not kill JonBenet. I did not have anything to do with it. I loved that child.

JOHN RAMSEY: It`s hard for people to accept, I think, that someone could come into a home and hurt a child in the bed. And we were perhaps an answer.


GRACE: Good evening. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us. Breaking news tonight in the brutal murder of 6-year-old Colorado beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey. In the last hours, Colorado authorities reveal newly discovered DNA evidence in the case attained through a new and highly sensitive DNA technique called touch DNA. Will it finally crack the case? Who murdered JonBenet?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Breaking news out of Colorado. Newly discovered DNA evidence does not match any Ramsey family member. The Boulder DA has released a letter officially clearing the Ramsey family of any involvement in the December 1996 death of the 6-year-old. The DNA, from a male, did not match anyone in law enforcement DNA databases.

JOHN RAMSEY: We now have pretty irrefutable DNA evidence, according to the DA`s office, and that`s the most significant thing to me. And certainly, we`re grateful that they acknowledged that we, you know, based on that, certainly could not have been involved. We now have very, very solid evidence, and that`s always been the hope, at least in the recent past, that that`s -- that will lead us to the killer eventually.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The recent testing was done on a different area of the child`s clothing. JonBenet`s body was found in the basement of the family home in a little used room on the day after Christmas in 1996.

PATSY RAMSEY: We`ve been said to be under the umbrella of suspicion, whatever that means, kind of in No Man`s Land.

There is a killer on the loose. Keep your babies close to you! There`s someone out there!


GRACE: Straight out to Nia Bender, news director at 710 KNUS, joining us from Denver. Bring us up to date, Nia.

NIA BENDER, 710 KNUS RADIO: Well, this was kind of a surprise for everybody. Mary Lacy, the district attorney in Boulder, sent out a press release a little earlier and announced that she went to a conference a few years ago basically concerning a new type of DNA on some educational training. That`s what she said in her press release. And then they contacted the company, Bode Technologies, in October of last year. And Bode though that they could help them out. They sent them some different pieces of clothing.

And then on March 24th, surprise, surprise, they actually did come up with DNA on the side of some leggings or longjohns, depending on what you want to call them, that JonBenet had been wearing that also matched the DNA that was in her panties. So this changes the whole ball game, and it really, really, really, clears the Ramsey family.

GRACE: We are taking your calls live. Joining us tonight is the lead scientist who worked with Bode Technology on the Ramsey case, Angela Williamson. Ms. Williamson, thank you for being with us. Explain to me touch DNA.

ANGELA WILLIAMSON, BODE TECHNOLOGY: OK, Nancy. Touch DNA is left behind every time that you touch somebody. It`s essentially shed skin cells. If you touch somebody on the shoulder, you`re leaving behind DNA. However, it`s very hard to find this touch DNA. It`s invisible. We can`t see it. So the way we have to try and sample it is to have a good idea where a person may have been touched and where these shed skin cells may be.

In this case, we knew that the suspect perhaps pulled down JonBenet`s longjohns. So we focused on the waistband and the side hip areas, where you would expect shed DNA to be left behind. We then used a careful sampling procedure, where we actually scraped a fine layer of this material to try and collect all the shed skin cells that may be on the top surface of her clothing.

GRACE: What was found, apparently, were leftover DNA, found by this touch DNA technology on the sides of JonBenet`s little longjohns, where they would be pulled down or pulled up, usually when you`re dressing a child.

Back to Angela Williamson with Bode Technology. She is the lead scientist who worked on the JonBenet Ramsey case employing this new technology, touch DNA. Can you get touch DNA off of human skin, or must it be on, for instance, a clothing surface?

WILLIAMSON: Touch DNA is present wherever someone has touched something, someone, or an object. You could, technically, find it on human skin, however, you would get a lot of DNA from that own person, as well. So even though it`s possible, we typically look for touch DNA on objects or clothing.

GRACE: Now, it`s my understanding touch DNA has been used around the world for four or five years. But to your knowledge, how long has it been used in the U.S.?

WILLIAMSON: I think it`s about the same in the U.S., actually. I originally trained in Australia, and they`ve been using it for about five years. And pretty much anything that they do has come from the U.S. So it`s about five years routinely over here, as well.

GRACE: I want to go to Larry Sutton, staff editor with "People" magazine. Larry, what`s your reaction?

LARRY SUTTON, "PEOPLE": Well, it`s shock because this is a case that we thought was basically being swept under the rug, everything over and done with. The news today is very interesting. It reads as a whole bunch of new questions, such as, Well, who is the suspect, if you`re ruling out the family? And if by ruling out the family just because of the DNA, does that mean that you also believe they have no knowledge of anyone else coming into their home that day? That`s a pretty big deal.

GRACE: To Wendy Murphy, former prosecutor and author of "And Justice for Some." Wendy, are you convinced that the discovery of this DNA, which matches DNA found in JonBenet`s underwear -- that DNA, a male DNA was found within blood of JonBenet Ramsey`s in her underwear. Does this really clear the Ramseys?

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR: No. In my opinion, Mary Lacy has issues in terms of her judgments. She was the one who, after all, charged John Mark Karr, a completely innocent man, with the crime despite the fact that he had never even been in Boulder, Colorado. We all seemed to know that before she did. Let`s just say I`m not having a lot of faith in this woman`s judgment at all. Plus, she`s a lame duck politician. No.

And you know what, Nancy? I can understand people get excited about the presence of DNA. It`s always important to talk about it. But you know something? There is no way that just because they might want to include some other unknown male that that by definition destroys the significance of the mountain of other evidence. And it is that very point that I think makes me crazy when I hear people say this proves that a stranger did it. You`d have to actually abandon the millions of pages of other evidence that points away from the stranger theory.

GRACE: To you, Wendy Murphy. And shortly joining us will be the private investigators that actually worked for the Ramseys on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Wendy Murphy, when you refer to the mountain of evidence suggesting there was not an intruder that killed JonBenet Ramsey, to what are you referring?

MURPHY: Well, first let me say it would take me a long time to go into all of it, Nancy. But you mentioned my book. I have an awful lot of stuff in there, more than one chapter with good, solid, based-in-fact information and evidence about the case that says nothing about an intruder.

Most important evidence -- this child -- and the autopsy confirms this. It`s publicly available. This child had chronic vaginal trauma. Her hymen was nearly gone. Only a tiny piece of it remained. She both acute, meaning fresh, and chronic, meaning old, vaginal injuries. That to me doesn`t sound like some bogeyman showed up on the night in question. She had epithelial erosion in her genital area. Erosion -- Nancy, what does erosion mean? Wearing away over time.

GRACE: Over time.

MURPHY: Over time. Now, unless this man, this mystery man, had ongoing intimate access to the child, it really doesn`t make me feel better about the case at all.

GRACE: And Wendy, what about that long ransom note apparently written, pages and pages of it -- written in the home, on Patsy Ramsey`s notepad with Patsy Ramsey`s pen, and a practice note? Whoever wrote the ransom note was not the least bit concerned of being discovered right there in the home!

MURPHY: That`s exactly right. Now, somebody might say, Well, that doesn`t prove it was a family member. Maybe so, but it sure doesn`t sound like a stranger, either, now, does it?

Now, here`s something I want to say to Mary Lacy. If you`re so confident that you have just pronounced the innocence of the Ramseys, then I hope you`ll be respectful of this child and the public`s right to know the truth and you will tomorrow release for public consumption all of the evidence that you gathered that implicated the Ramseys, that kept them under the umbrella of suspicion for so long.

For example, there were three search warrants conducted for child pornography in the Ramsey home, on their computer, two homes, indeed. There was some material gathered. It is on file with the court. I don`t know what`s there. Please release it to the public so we can see. And how about the tests, if any, that were done on that pineapple?

Can I take a moment here to explain this, Nancy? Probably the most important forensic evidence, far more important than this DNA, this child had undigested pineapple in her belly, which means she ate it within two hours of death. She died sometime after midnight. Parents said they brought her home from a party sound asleep and put her to bed sleeping. But aha, there was a bowl of pineapple on the kitchen table, Patsy`s fingerprints on the bowl. Both parents said, I didn`t give it to her.

Now, mind you, I`m not so sure what`s bad about giving your child pineapple. French fries I understand. Pineapple, I don`t understand. But they were both adamant, I didn`t give it to her. We know that pineapple bowl was seized and tested, don`t we? At least, that`s what one would do if one found undigested pineapple in a dead child`s belly. So Mary Lacy, where are those test results? I think we have a right to know.

GRACE: Joining us now, two very special guests from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Ollie Gray and John San Agustin, both private investigators that worked on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Gentlemen, thank you for being with us.

To you, Ollie. Do you believe this bombshell evidence that we now know about, more DNA evidence pointing to an unknown male found on the longjohns JonBenet was wearing when she went to bed -- do you believe that exonerates the Ramsey family?

OLLIE GRAY, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Nancy, I think that the DNA tells the story. Everybody makes a big thing of the DNA. Then I think we ought to take it and understand it. And in this particular case, it proves the same thing that we`ve known since February of 1997, that the Ramseys were not involved and did not match any DNA testing at that time. Whether that was old archaic and this is new and modern, the results are the same. It lists somebody as a potential killer. And I think all the physical evidence points to an intruder, not the family at home.

GRACE: What about it, John San Augustin?

JOHN SAN AGUSTIN, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Well, you know, in all due respect to your last speaker, I don`t think she ever had the opportunity to truly review all the evidence in this case. We have. And I can tell you that there is plenty of physical evidence that points to intruder. We have a stun gun that was used on this poor little girl`s face and on her back. She was strangled with a garrote. She was sexually assaulted. We know that there`s a piece of this paintbrush that was used in the garrote that was missing. We have foreign footwear impressions inside of the room where she was found.

So how do we explain all this? And the reality is this, Nancy, is that we have good physical evidence. DNA evidence is good physical evidence. And if you read in this -- go ahead, I`m sorry.

GRACE: John, you and Ollie were paid by whom?

SAN AGUSTIN: Paid by whom? We weren`t paid by anybody. We`ve been on pro bono for the Ramsey family since 1999.

GRACE: I`m sorry? I couldn`t hear you. Repeat?

SAN AGUSTIN: We have been working pro bono on behalf of the family since 1999.

GRACE: And when did you enter the case?

SAN AGUSTIN: Well, we were initially called back in 1996 by Commander Eller (ph). We were brought in to initially look at this case. And then after that, shortly we were brought on by Alex Hunter`s staff to assist Lou Smith (ph) in the intruder theory.

GRACE: So at no time...

SAN AGUSTIN: ... where we were asked to review...

GRACE: At no time were you employed by the Ramseys?

SAN AGUSTIN: No, we were. We were working for them pro bono since 199 under Mr. Wood, Mr. Lin Wood.

GRACE: Oh, I understand. So you were never paid for your work?

SAN AGUSTIN: No, ma`am. We were working pro bono on behalf of the Ramsey family, you know? And the reason why Ollie and myself have been committed to this case is because of the physical evidence. You know, we have people out there writing books and giving commentary, but nobody has truly looked at the physical evidence in this case.

GRACE: Let`s go to the lines. Peggy in Virginia. Hi, Peggy.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi. I was wondering if any of the parents ever got -- like, with the pageant -- ever got checked.

GRACE: I`m sorry. I couldn`t understand you. Repeat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The parents, like, through the pageant and stuff?

GRACE: Oh, I see, parents of people that attended those pageants. Back to Larry Sutton with "People" magazine. What do we know about that?

SUTTON: Well, we know, of course they interviewed everyone and anyone who had anything to do with JonBenet Ramsey and her parents, so they`ve been interviewed in the past. The big question here now is, What do you do with that DNA, now that you`ve got it? What do you match it against? It`s not as common as, say, fingerprints would be. So I guess the work that`s cut out for the folks there in Colorado is to find out, you know, What are we going to match this up against, prior criminal records? We`ll have to wait and see.

GRACE: So to Mike Brooks, former fed with the FBI. Mike, what do we do now, reopen the investigation? It`s the only answer.

MIKE BROOKS, FORMER D.C. POLICE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: It is, Nancy. It`s a cold case. But again, you`re going to have to go over all the physical evidence, all the statements (INAUDIBLE) to see if there`s any inconsistencies whatsoever, people who are close to the family. You know, criminal profilers for years have thought it was someone that either knew the family or was close to the family.


JOHN RAMSEY: You know, the pain, the intense pain we felt was the loss of our child. We -- the accusations and the finger pointing wasn`t significant then. We were deeply crushed by the loss of our child, and particularly in the way -- the manner that it happened. I`d lost another daughter in an automobile accident. That was crushing, but it was different. It was an accident. This was not an accident. This was a willful act of another human being.




PATSY RAMSEY: We feel like there are at least two people on the face of this earth that know who did it, and that is the killer and someone that that person may have confided in. And we need that one phone call. We need the one phone call to this number that will help the authorities come to a conclusion.


GRACE: Straight out to the lines. Tonight a bombshell. Due to a highly sensitive new DNA technique called touch DNA, we now learn of more DNA discovered on the leggings beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey wore the night she went to bed, the night that she was killed. That DNA, a male DNA, matches DNA found in her underwear.

Straight back out to Angela Williamson, the lead scientist who worked with Bode Technology on the Ramsey case. Was the DNA sperm?

WILLIAMSON: The DNA profile we obtained was not from spermatozoa.

GRACE: That only leaves hair, skin, nails. Do we know what substance it was?

WILLIAMSON: The area that we sampled from, there was no visible staining. We believe it to be touch DNA, most likely skin cells from maybe someone`s hand.

GRACE: Skin cells, OK. Angela, Ms. Williamson, the DNA found inside the 6-year-old`s underwear, the inside crotch of her underwear, mingled with her blood -- was that DNA sperm?

WILLIAMSON: We actually did not do that testing. It is my belief that it was not from sperm, though. However, that testing was done by the Denver PD.

GRACE: Thank you. Back to Nia Bender with 710 KNUS. The DNA found in JonBenet`s underwear, was it sperm? Do we know what it was?

BENDER: We do not know what was in the underwear. They have never really clarified whether there was sperm in the underwear or not.

GRACE: OK, let`s ask Ollie Gray. Ollie, you and John San Agustin say that you have had inside information, that you`ve been able to review the files. Was the DNA in her underwear sperm?

GRAY: As far as I know, it was not sperm.

GRACE: What was it?

GRAY: It was a liquid, and it could have been either from the mouth, or it could have been from an insertion into the vagina area of part of the paintbrush that caused the fluid. As you remember, it was also mixed with blood.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Some newly discovered DNA evidence in the JonBenet Ramsey case has surfaced, and apparently, this DNA evidence does not match any of the Ramsey family members, including John Ramsey, Patsy Ramsey or any other immediate family members. You remember JonBenet`s body was found in their family home in Boulder, Colorado, back on December 26, the day after Christmas, in 1996. Since then, the family has been under fire and grilled for being possibly attached to the murder of their daughter.


GRACE: Welcome back. Bombshell evidence in the case of 6-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey. We learned in the last hours that the Colorado prosecutors have announced new DNA results, DNA results that they say exonerate the Ramsey family.

Straight out to the calls. Maggie in California. Hi, Maggie.


GRACE: Hi, dear. What`s your question?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My question is, is that it is my understanding they have a national database for DNA evidence, and if they had not compared that to that -- and child molesters seldom do it once.

GRACE: Maggie, they have put the DNA into COTIS (ph), the national DNA data bank, and there has not been a match whatsoever. Isn`t that correct, Larry Sutton?

SUTTON: Yes. And the reason for that, again, as we say, it`s still relatively new. I mean, it`s not brand-new, but if it were fingerprints, you`d have a lot more people to check it up against. DNA, not that many.



UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Breaking news, JonBenet Ramsey`s family may finally feel vindicated. Almost 12 years after her murder, the district attorney in Boulder, Colorado, released new DNA evidence in the case clearing the family.

DNA was taken from JonBenet`s leggings that go over her underwear and it does not match her -- match with mom, dad, or anyone in the immediate family.

JonBenet`s body was found in her family`s home in Boulder, Colorado a day after Christmas, December 26th, 1996. That morning, her mom, Patsy Ramsey finds a ransom note at the bottom of the staircase. Several hours later, John Ramsey finds his 6-year-old daughter dead.

STEVE THOMAS, FORMER BOULDER POLICE DETECTIVE: By the time I left the Boulder Police Department, June of 1998 -- Patsy, out of 73 suspects whose handwriting had been looked at, you were the only one that showed evidence to suggest authorship.

These people know better than anybody. Probable cause was not the issue in this case.

Patsy, you could have been arrested in this case.

PATSY RAMSEY, MOTHER OF JONBENET RAMSEY: I wish I had been and then we would have had a free and fair trial, and you would have met your Waterloo, Mr. Thomas.

JOHN MARK KARR, SUSPECT IN JONBENET MURDER CASE: I love JonBenet and she died accidentally.



GRACE: Straight out to the lawyers joining us tonight -- Wendy Murphy, Renee Rockwell, Peter Odom.

To you, Renee Rockwell, will the fact that John Mark Karr was brought all the way back from Thailand to the U.S. presumably on child pornography charges, but was made a very highly visible suspect in the JonBenet Ramsey murder trial, will that make it more difficult to prosecute the real killer?

RENEE ROCKWELL, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, Nancy, absolutely. Any defense attorney is going to say, look, you`re just doing the shotgun approach, you arrested him, you accused the mother, the father, you`ve accused family members. It just dilutes any possible suspect.

GRACE: Peter Odom?

PETER ODOM, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely. And you know, the best piece of evidence that they will have in the case, they just got. I would love to be defending the Ramseys in this case because there`s so much physical evidence clearing them and John Mark Karr is just one piece of it.

GRACE: And to you, Wendy Murphy, what about it?

WENDY MURPHY, FORMER PROSECUTOR, AUTHOR OF "AND JUSTICE FOR SOME": Look, I`m sure the mountain of evidence that we haven`t seen yet would be - - it would be good if we saw that before we answered that question.

So much of this case is still under wraps. And let`s not forget the Ramseys were suspects in part because they lawyered up the day the child`s body was found and refused to go to the police station for interviews. That caused problems for them right away.

And by the way, as we`re talking about underwear, please let me say this, when John Ramsey was finally interviewed about some of the evidence by law enforcement officials, they told him that sweater fibers matching his unusual Israeli wool sweater were also found in the crotch of the child`s underpants.

So you want to talk about DNA of a mystery man, that`s fine. Let`s also talk about John Ramsey`s sweater fibers, shall we?

GRACE: We are taking your calls live. To Tunisia in North Carolina, hi, Tunisia.

TUNISIA, NORTH CAROLINA RESIDENT: Hi, Nancy. I love your show, I watch it every night.

GRACE: Thank you.

TUNISIA: My question was, how recent or how long after JonBenet`s death was this test taken? And was it taken off of her underwear or was it taken off of JonBenet?

GRACE: Now are you talking about this most recent DNA?

TUNISIA: This touch testing.


Out to Angelo Williamson with Bode Technology -- she is the lead scientist who worked with the D.A. on the Ramsey case.

Angela Williamson, the testing that you just did was on DNA that you discovered on the leggings she wore to bed that night, correct?

ANGELA WILLIAMSON, BODE TECHNOLOGY, WORKED WITH DA ON JONBENET RAMSEY CASE: Yes, that is correct. And that was done early this year.

GRACE: Out to the lines, to Marie in Kentucky, hi, Marie.

MARIE, KENTUCKY RESIDENT: Hi, hi, Nancy. I love your show.

GRACE: Hi, dear. Thank you. What`s your question?

MARIE: Listen, I want to know, did they get DNA from John Mark Karr? And why -- how did he get exonerated?

GRACE: To Nia Bender with 710 KNUS, want to explain?

NIA BENDER, NEWS DIRECTOR, 710 KNUS RADIO: Yes, I`d be glad to. Yes, they did go ahead and take a DNA sample from John Mark Karr. His DNA did not match anything that they had found on JonBenet Ramsey`s clothing or on her body.

And basically they had nothing that they could tie him together with this on other than the fact he had some pretty strange fantasies.

GRACE: Out to the lines, let`s go to Carolyn in New Jersey. Hi, Carolyn.

CAROLYN, NEW JERSEY RESIDENT: Hi, Nancy. My question is, why wasn`t the DNA that was found in JonBenet`s underwear years ago enough to exonerate her parents back then?

GRACE: You know, that`s an excellent question.

I want to go out to Mike Brooks on that. Since this DNA on the leggings and apparently the DNA was found on the long johns where they would be pulled up or pulled down on JonBenet Ramsey.


GRACE: Touch DNA from touching the leggings -- it was not sperm, a saliva, blood -- it was from touching the fiber. Very, very difficult to obtain.

Now, if the DNA, the male DNA, found inside her underwear was not enough to exonerate the Ramseys, why now?

BROOKS: I think because there was just such scrutiny around the Ramseys. You know they looked at Patsy, they looked at Miss -- John Ramsey, and they also looked at the brother, her brother Burke.

You know, did not match any -- that`s a great question, Nancy. But you know what? Everybody`s always talking about -- let`s talk about the first six hours of this investigation.

Wendy brings up a lot of good points and I have to agree with her on some of her points. But the Boulder Police Department botched this case in the first six hours. It was only a kidnapping for the first six hours. The police didn`t even find her body, Nancy until the -- in her own house for six hours.

To me that`s despicable.

GRACE: Let`s go out to Dr. Joshua Perper. He is the medical examiner and author joining us out of Miami, Florida.

Dr. Perper, it`s wonderful to see you. Question: is the examination of JonBenet`s body now limited to that `96 autopsy?

DR. JOSHUA PERPER, MEDICAL EXAMINER, AUTHOR OF "WHEN TO CALL THE DOCTOR": Well, my understanding is that they want to re-examine the body perhaps to do additional sampling of tissue from the vaginal area or other area. But I don`t think that they`ll find much by this time.

GRACE: Why the.

PERPER: . because they found already the foreign mysterious, stranger DNA.

GRACE: And Dr. Perper, how accurate is DNA?

PERPER: Well, it`s very -- it`s very precise, I would say, that they are testing, which sometimes exceed the possibility that somebody on earth did it, probably it exceeds certain 90 percent.

GRACE: Now I want to go back out to Wendy Murphy, former prosecutor and author of "And Justice for Some."

Wendy, it`s a really good point. If the Ramseys were not exonerated when DNA was found inside JonBenet`s underwear, why now?

MURPHY: Look, I think that`s a perfectly brilliant question. And I think Mary Lacy has to answer that. But I`ll tell you one thing about the DNA that was inside the underpants.

My understanding -- I could be wrong about this -- but I believe Henry Lee even had something to do with the testing in the sense he looked at other pairs of underpants and said, you know, in the manufacturing process this was such a teensy, wincey, itsy fragmented little tiny bit of DNA that he thought it was a whole lot of nothing probably from the manufacturing because he found other male DNA in underpants that had just come fresh out of a package.

So I don`t think it exonerated anybody. I think it was a red herring, a whole lot of nothing, and that`s why it didn`t clear them.

Frankly, I think this new evidence doesn`t necessarily do much either because whether or not a person touched those long johns, it doesn`t prove anything about whether that person or any other person killed the child.

Touching long johns can raise a host of questions about how, when, where, the touching occurred. It could have been a week later. I mean -- sorry, a week earlier, a month earlier, you don`t know when the DNA was placed there. And I think everybody would agree, there is no way to know when that touch happened.

GRACE: But, Mike Brooks, we`ve got to acknowledge that the likelihood of an innocent touching on the long johns she wore to bed and the same DNA being inside of her underwear is pretty astronomical.

BROOKS: Absolutely, I mean, did it come to the same manufacturer or was it the same that folded them up and put them in the plastic bag? Probably not, Nancy. You know, but -- you know, is it a stranger? Is this someone that the Ramseys know? We still don`t know and we`re still not any closer with this DNA testing.

GRACE: Back out to John San Agustin, private investigator who worked on the JonBenet Ramsey case. He`s joining us along with Ollie Gray.

John, JonBenet Ramsey was sexually assaulted, that was clear. But what would be the explanation for the fact that she had been sexually assaulted, apparently, in the past. She had little or no hymen left whatsoever.

JOHN SAN AGUSTIN, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR, WORKED ON JONBENET RAMSEY CASE: You know I don`t know where that information came up because when we reviewed 10 years` worth of history.

GRACE: I think it was in the autopsy report.

SAN AGUSTIN: I`m not aware of that. What I`m aware of in the autopsy report is that there was reddish hyperemia. Why you have blood in that poor little girl`s underwear is because somebody had sexually assaulted her causing that blood to come on to her underwear.

The fact that we have the DNA there and on her long johns is significant. That is big. It is great physical evidence, and anybody who`s investigating a homicide would consider that great evidence.




KARR: It`s not so much that I`m concerned that they`re exploiting her, it`s just I want them to get their bloody hands off her is what I want. If I saw anything on the Internet about her, I would die. It would just be disgusting.

Who are those disgusting strangers who would dare talk about her?


GRACE: Well, you mean other than you, John Mark Karr? Weren`t you the one that said on tape that you wanted to crawl into her coffin and make love to her? A 6-year-old little girl from Colorado?

We are taking your calls live.

A bomb shell twists and turn in the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation. Now DNA on the leggings the little girl wore to bed that night matches male DNA found inside her underwear.

Apparently, Mary Lacy, the district attorney, believes that`s enough to clear and exonerate the Ramsey family.

Out to the lines, let`s go to Karen in Kentucky. Hi, Karen.


GRACE: What`s your question, dear?

KAREN: Yes. Could you ask them, did they take a DNA testing from Burke? Or any of Burke`s friends?

GRACE: Yes, it`s my understanding.

Larry Sutton of "People" magazine, that everybody in the family was tested.

LARRY SUTTON, STAFF EDITOR, PEOPLE MAGAZINE: Absolutely, everyone was tested. The police did their due diligence there.

GRACE: Back out to Wendy Murphy, former prosecutor and author.

Wendy, the evidence we were discussing earlier regarding the erosion of JonBenet Ramsey`s hymen and the evidence of repeated, over time, molestation, where did that come from?

MURPHY: This is a direct quote from the autopsy. And I sure do hope that the other guests who claim to have examined all of the important evidence in this case can resurrect it so that they`ll know what we all know.

Chronic inflammation is seen in the vagina mucosa, epithelial erosion, and as I mentioned, an eroded hymen.

Nancy, those are very important words to anybody and I think Dr. Perper can even get to answer some of these questions about what does that mean. To some of us who`ve done these kinds of cases, it`s very clear, to a layperson not so much. The word erosion, the word chronic -- those are terms of art in medicine that mean over time.

GRACE: You know what, Wendy? They certainly are.

Dr. Perper, weigh in, explain what they mean.

PERPER: Well, an abrasion means a scratch and chronic means long standing, so it means that those scratches were there for a significant period of time over and over if they are, indeed, chronic manifestation of physical injury.

GRACE: To John San Agustin, private investigator who worked on the case, you just told me that was not in the autopsy report. It is.

SAN AGUSTIN: No, I did not. I did not say that. I say I`m not aware. That was a comment. I said what I know of the autopsy is that we have reddish hyperemia, an abrasion to the distal part of her vaginal wall.

And all I`m trying to look at here is to say, look, this little girl has blood in her underwear that is a mixture of this bandit, this criminal that her blood and his blood is -- there`s a mixture.


SAN AGUSTIN: . in there and now we`ve got blood on the long johns.

GRACE: I was asking you about the chronic vaginal trauma, the fact that she had very little hymen left, incidents that happened before the night of her murder. Whatever happened before the night of her murder, we may never know.

What we do know is that when she put the leggings on, she went to bed, and on those leggings, around the waistband there is male DNA that matches the DNA inside the underwear.

Now over a decade later, the district attorney believes that is enough evidence sufficient to exonerate the Ramsey family.

Out to Shirley in Georgia, hi, Shirley.

SHIRLEY, GEORGIA RESIDENT: Hi, Nancy, thank you for being the voice for the victims.

GRACE: Thank you.

SHIRLEY: I would like to ask, does anyone know if the Ramseys did their own laundry or if they sent their laundry out.

GRACE: Now that`s an excellent question.

Nia Bender, that could -- I know it`s a problematic theory but that could explain how the DNA ended up in her clothing.

BENDER: It very well could. And, you know, I really can`t honestly tell you whether they sent their laundry out or not. But it does bring up the point that if there were sweater fibers found in JonBenet`s underwear that matched her father`s sweater, then, you know, how many times have you thrown your clothes in the drier, Nancy, with the kid`s clothes?

GRACE: I very rarely would throw a sweater into a washer or drier.

BENDER: It could have -- things could have been folded, though, and put with those.

GRACE: True. True. That`s true.

BENDER: So that may explain how fibers got there.

GRACE: Out to Ollie Gray, the private investigator who worked on the case. Did they take their laundry out?

OLLIE GRAY, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR WORKED ON JONBENET RAMSEY CASE: I don`t know. They had a lady that worked in their house. I doubt very seriously that they did.

GRACE: I agree. To Sheeba in Illinois, hi, Sheeba.

SHEEBA, ILLINOIS RESIDENT: Hey, sweet heart. My question is this touch DNA. It sounds like to me there could be some innocent people sent to prison because -- my example is, you and I don`t know each other, but supposing we did and on the streets you touched my shoulder and two hours later somebody stabs me and their blood didn`t get mixed in.

GRACE: Well, Sheeba, let me tell you something. If the same DNA was found in your underwear, you might have a -- then there`d be a case. But simple touch DNA on the outside of the body is not enough for a conviction. But I understand your theory.

Out to the lawyers -- to Renee Rockwell, is there any way, now that they`ve been exonerated, that, for instance, a lawsuit can be filed on behalf of Patsy Ramsey?

ROCKWELL: I wouldn`t think so, Nancy, because I think that the police officers did act in good faith.

GRACE: Peter?

ODOM: I think that this letter from the D.A. has any legal effect and will prevent anyone from doing anything legal, Nancy.

GRACE: Wendy?

MURPHY: I agree with that completely.

Nancy, I wish I could just clarify. John Ramsey was asked if he could explain away those sweater fibers and aside from stammering, he basically acknowledged it had never gone into the laundry because, as you pointed out, it was a wool sweater.

And the underpants we`re talking about were from a brand new package, hasn`t ever been laundered.

GRACE: Joining us tonight, Lisa Boesky, psychologist and author of "When to Worry."

Lisa, weigh in.

LISA BOESKY, PSYCHOLOGIST, AUTHOR OF "WHEN TO WORRY": Well, we ought to remember, this is not a typical 6-year-old that we see in a sandbox. This is a 6-year-old who`s been paraded around on the Internet, in pageants, very sexualized, and with her makeup and her hair.

So you`ve got to remember how many creeps have been watching her and the -- predators that I know that have assaulted little girls like this, they tend to not want to cause pain to their victims and they certainly don`t want to kill them.

They want to go back to them again and again and again for pleasure. So nothing about this makes sense and it still seems to me like it may be someone who knows the family.