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Nancy Grace

Nancy Grace Mysteries: JonBenet Ramsey

Aired July 26, 2013 - 20:00   ET


NANCY GRACE, HOST: When I hear the name JonBenet Ramsey, what comes to mind immediately is injustice, injustice in that this little girl`s, a 6-year-old beauty queen from Colorado, murder has never been solved. Never.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On the day after Christmas 1996, the body of JonBenet Ramsey was found in the basement of her family`s home in Boulder, Colorado. She had been beaten, strangled, a handwritten ransom note left on the staircase. It was the city`s only murder of the year, and it instantly became the focus of a nation.

JonBenet`s parents, John and Patsy Ramsey, said an intruder murdered their daughter after attempting to kidnap her. In an interview with CNN, they urged parents to be careful.

PATSY RAMSEY, JONBENET`S MOTHER: If I were a resident of Boulder, I would tell my friends to keep...


PATSY RAMSEY: ... keep your babies close to you! There`s someone out there!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Even after a grand jury failed to indict the Ramseys, to many they remained subjects of suspicion. In 2000, on "LARRY KING LIVE," Steve Thomas, a former Boulder police detective, confronted John and Patsy.

STEVE THOMAS, FMR. BOULDER POLICE DETECTIVE: I felt that Patsy was involved in this death, in this tragedy, and I felt that it had become such a debacle and was going nowhere.

LARRY KING, HOST: John, why did you agree to come on with Steve tonight? This is rather historic. I`m trying to remember if there`s ever been television like this.

JOHN RAMSEY: This man as a police officer has called my wife a murderer. He`s called me a -- complicity to murder. He has called me a liar. He has slandered my relationship with my daughter, Patsy`s relationship with JonBenet.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thomas wrote a book claiming the Ramseys were involved in their child`s murder. In 2001, the Ramseys sued, and a year later settled out of court. Then in 2003, the Boulder Police Department ended its investigation and handed it over to the district attorney. The DA vowed to reopen the case but refused to eliminate the Ramseys as possible suspects.

Just a month later, the DA changed her mind. A judge ruled in a civil case that an intruder most likely killed JonBenet and the prosecutor agreed, finally removing the cloud of suspicion over the parents.

By that point, the Ramseys had moved to Michigan, where they continued to monitor the investigation, hoping DNA evidence would bring the killer to justice. Patsy Ramsey wouldn`t live to see her daughter`s murder solved. She died of ovarian cancer, but not before learning that Boulder authorities had a suspect in their sights. Patsy was buried in a Georgia cemetery, next to JonBenet.


GRACE: What else comes to mind? A botched crime scene, a murder of a child inappropriately handled, bungled from the get-go, investigators and police being so solicitous of the family that statements were not appropriately taken immediately when police arrived at the scene.

That`s a very fine line to walk for police, whether to treat parents as victims or as possible witnesses or as possible suspects or as possible persons of interest. It`s very, very difficult. But their main job is to solve the crime. That`s the main job for police, to save victims and to solve crimes.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The child beauty pageant star was strangled with a piece of rope and her skull was fractured. The day after Christmas 1996, mother Patsy reports finding a two-and-a-half-page ransom note on a staircase demanding $118,000 in ransom. Eight hours after that, JonBenet`s father, John, reports finding his daughter`s body in the basement of the family`s Boulder, Colorado home. The family buries their little girl wearing a tiny tiara, then gives an exclusive interview to CNN the following day.

PATSY RAMSEY: There is a killer on the loose.

JOHN RAMSEY: Absolutely.

PATSY RAMSEY: I don`t know who it is. I don`t know if it`s a he or a she.


GRACE: I think of JonBenet, and unlike probably millions of people who immediately recall her dancing around in a little cowboy, cowgirl outfit -- you know, a pedophile`s dream video -- I think of injustice. I think of a little girl abused, beaten and strangled, who died alone in her parents` basement, alone in the sense that no one that truly loved her was with her.

I think about evidence that was misinterpreted or overlooked, public pressure, politics, friends of friends of friends. And the case was never solved.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On page one of the JonBenet autopsy report, new information as to her exact cause of death. It reads, "Cause of death of this 6-year-old female is asphyxia by strangulation associated with craniocerebral trauma." This means JonBenet died not just of strangulation but that in combination with blunt force injury to her brain.

The autopsy report also shows bruises on her scalp, bruises above her ears, scrapes on her right cheek, scrapes and bruises on her right shoulder, and scrapes on her left lower back and left lower leg. The report does not indicate whether these injuries were caused by a weapon.

As for sexual assault, the autopsy suggests JonBenet was sexually assaulted before she died. Denver coroner Dr. Thomas Henry says based on this limited report, there`s no way to conclude whether or not JonBenet had been sexually assaulted more than once.


GRACE: I think about a little girl that was objectified, who never really had a full childhood because she was in one beauty contest after the next until she met her death.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Boulder police have been criticized for their investigation into the strangulation death of JonBenet Ramsey. Critics say police have been too slow, secretive and inefficient in their efforts to find the girl`s killer.

Now the other investigation, this one funded by the Ramsey family, has come under attack. Famed former FBI profiler John Douglas (ph), who was hired by the Ramseys to profile JonBenet`s killer, made a splash on TV news programs this week. He proclaimed the Ramseys innocent and said their daughter`s killer was probably someone who had a grudge against her father, John.

But Douglas ultimately conceded all the information for his private investigation came from the Ramsey team. Criticism for his public proclamations abounded.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I wouldn`t recommend that any names be bandied about, either good or bad -- in other words, either naming a suspect or eliminating potential suspects.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That`s been the posture of Boulder police chief Tom Coby (ph), who`s still saying almost nothing publicly about the case. Police do say they have been consulting with the FBI routinely.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... having to do with behavioral science expertise, behavioral analysis and profiling. So they are there to help us and have done so throughout the case.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is the very agency where John Douglas used to work. If the private investigation by Douglas now seems less than stellar, the police, as well, may have problems. There are still no arrests and no official suspects.

And numerous law enforcement experts point out the failure of the Boulder police to seal off the Ramsey house the first day of JonBenet`s reported disappearance might have contaminated possible evidence.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I think even a bad defense attorney`s going to have a good time with this, but it`s not a good time. It`s not fun. You see, the problem we have is that everybody assumes bad police work helps somebody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not so, he says, because John and Patsy Ramsey could be wrongly implicated by bad police work. Whatever the quality of their work, it may stay secret for a while. The county coroner will ask that the final autopsy report remain sealed for the time being.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When you talked with the police, did they ask you about sexual abuse of JonBenet?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, of course they did.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What did you tell them?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I told them absolutely, categorically no. There was absolutely no evidence, either physical or historical.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And that`s from seeing her 30 times in three years?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What else did they ask you?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, they asked many of the same questions you`ve been asking.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Relationships with her parents?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Relationships with her parents and what sort of child she was, if there was any indication of depression or sadness.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And your answers?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Only as appropriate. If she was sick, she wasn`t feeling too well. If her mother was off getting treated for cancer, she was sad at that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He talked with us in the treatment room where he saw her five weeks before she was killed.

Was she an ordinary kid?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I think she was extraordinary in the amount of charm that she had. And sweetness, I guess, is the quality that I appreciated most, how she was doing things and -- with her friends here, going to Michigan with her parents, just the fun things in life. And the beauty pageants just didn`t seem to be at the top of the heap by any means.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Tell me what she said to you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To be honest with you, I can`t remember. I just remember it made me feel good to see that much happiness and niceness in one spot.


GRACE: Then I think of freaks like John Mark Karr, who muddied the water years later, claiming he killed JonBenet.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you ever actually meet JonBenet Ramsey in person?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How many times were you with her?

KARR: You know, the description of my connection with her prior to her death is something that I can`t discuss, and it`s because in knowing a child, you don`t just know that child. There are other people involved in knowing a child. And I had to protect the innocent, not the guilty. I can`t respond to any details about my connection with her before her death.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But are you saying that you were actually in her company more than once?

KARR: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what kind of a connection? You talk a lot about the connection you had. Was it a physical connection or a spiritual connection?

KARR: It was a connection as in knowing her as a child. I`ve known hundreds of children. And unfortunately, because there are other people involved in knowing a child and I wish to protect them, I can`t discuss the details of my connection with her. It`s unfortunate. I wish I could.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you understand why that`s confusing for people, though? Because you are very willing to come forward. You came on the show tonight. You did this long article with the AJC (ph) this morning. You keep saying you want to talk about things, you want to have this normal life, but you don`t answer the questions that people are asking you, the questions that you know they want answered. Why?

KARR: There are reasons. There are reasons, and I just gave you the reason. That`s the reason. It`s a valid reason, and I`m sticking by it. And you know, the bottom line is answering all the questions is not what`s important to me. Whether someone believes me is not important to me. Protecting people who are innocent is important to me. And I`m going to do it at all costs.

KING: Wouldn`t you wonder, if someone came on television tonight and confessed to an outstanding crime that has never been solved and said, "I did it," and was -- all the photographers came and -- and then they found out they didn`t do it?

KARR: You know what, Larry?

KING: Wouldn`t you wonder?

KARR: I don`t recall ever saying I did anything. So that`s where I`m confused as to the question, as well. I never said...

KING: You never said you did it.

KARR: I never gave a definitive overt yes or no to anything, and I never said I did anything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The accused has given the prosecution some leads, but they`re unlikely to be enough. His confession is alarming, but it`s not a confession to murder. Even if Karr was with JonBenet Ramsey when she died, he claims her death was an accident. So by itself, the so-called confession is not enough to guarantee a conviction. That`s probably why Boulder district attorney Mary Lacey (ph) is being so cautious.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do not jump to conclusions. Do not jump to judgment. Do not speculate. Let the justice system take its course.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The DA will need hard evidence, starting with proof of Karr`s presence at the crime scene. How could a man in Alabama become so obsessed with a 6-year-old beauty pageant winner in Boulder, Colorado, that he would travel halfway across the country to be with her and then murder her?

Most importantly, what about physical evidence like DNA? Karr has already given a sample, but it needs to be matched to the DNA found at the murder scene. There were also fingerprints at the scene and the now famous ransom note. Can they be tied to Karr`s prints and his handwriting?

Only if the prosecution can answer those outstanding questions might it be able to convince a jury that John Mark Karr is guilty of killing JonBenet Ramsey.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a bombshell, if this information is true. And at this point, I know the reporter reporting this from our CNN affiliated station in Denver is an investigative reporter with that station who is now reporting that not only is there no DNA match involving John Karr, but that he will not be charged.

Now, what`s interesting is, at this hour, John Karr`s two attorneys, the two public defenders provided to him by the state of Colorado, are still visiting with him at the jail. This is in advance of a court appearance, what was to be his first court appearance this afternoon in just a couple of hours from now, at which time Mr. Karr was supposed to be advised of his rights. But it`s important to point out at this stage, he had not been formally charged with anything in this case.

Just to briefly recap, this is a man that authorities went over all the way from the state of Colorado to Thailand to pick him up, based on information they received in part from e-mails that John Karr sent to a Colorado journalism professor.

In addition to information contained in that e-mail, we also learned that John Karr, according to a U.S. law enforcement official, curiously had information about JonBenet Ramsey`s body that had not been made public before, not been made public by the medical examiner or by law enforcement authorities.

So at this point, it is hard to square away how it is that he evidently had that information, and yet there is no DNA match. It raises the question, is this a man who was simply obsessed with JonBenet Ramsey and had access somehow to some inside information?


GRACE: Think of all the leaches that have grabbed onto this case and used it. I often think of Burke (ph) Ramsey, JonBenet`s brother, who many people suspected of killing her, which is an outlandish theory. I mean, statistics alone show that it`s extremely rare for a brother or sister -- it`s called fratricide -- to occur. It`s extremely rare. And if you look at Burke at the time, you know, he`s so small and frail, there`s no way he did this deed.

But I think of him often to this very day and how the murder of his sister must have affected his life. That`s what I think of when I think of JonBenet Ramsey.


GRACE: The irony of JonBenet`s murder is that this all occurred on Christmas, around Christmas day. She got up on what many children consider to be the greatest day of the year, saw her presents, had a wonderful day at home with her family. The family went to a Christmas party at a friend`s home. They arrived back home around 9:30 in the evening. JonBenet was said to have been so tired, she actually fell asleep and had to be carried to bed, went straight to bed.

Suddenly, the next morning, frantic phone calls that JonBenet was missing. When Patsy Ramsey came to the front door, she had on complete hair and makeup -- eyeliner, mascara, the works. This is at about 5:00 o`clock in the morning.

The home was completely searched. Only hours and hours later did the Ramseys alert the police, Oh, yes, we have this additional area downstairs in the wine cellar, let`s go look. John Ramsey and a friend of his went down to that area, and John Ramsey is the one that discovered the body. So Ramsey himself volunteered to go down into that area of the home. He and his friend Fleet (ph) were there when the door was opened and the body of JonBenet Ramsey was found.


GRACE: The body was covered in a blanket, which is very unusual. Random murder very rarely involves covering up the body. And that is almost an instinctual act. If you`ve ever seen a dog walk around in a circle before it sits down, that`s instinct bred from millions of years. Humans, when they kill a loved one or an acquaintance, very often will cover up the body with a blanket, with leaves, with trash, with paper, with boxes, with something. You very rarely see the shrouding of a body that is stranger on stranger.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 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 we would expect the 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 to collect all the shed skin cells that may be on the top surface of her clothing.


GRACE: JonBenet`s body was covered in a blanket. She died of asphyxiation by ligature with a rope that was attached to a broken handle from one of Patsy Ramsey`s paintbrushes. The rope was turned into a garrote, a ligature -- it was a rope strangling -- and attached to the paintbrush. And it was also loosely attached to her hands.

She was wearing a shirt with a heart on the front that she had worn the night before, white PJs and white underwear, PJ bottoms and underwear. In the underwear was urine and what appeared to be drops of blood. She had pigtails in her hair. She was still wearing a single cross necklace around her neck. On her heart was drawn -- on her hand, the palm of her hand, was drawn a heart. Her hair was caught in the ligature.

She died of asphyxiation from the ligature and cranial injuries from an apparent blow to the head. There were lacerations and bruising, hematoma in her vagina consistent with digital penetration, suggesting that a man did not abuse her, although he could have. Digital means fingers. But typically, you`ll see a man sexually assault a child with full-blown sex.

Why do I say that? Because her hymen was intact. And if JonBenet Ramsey had been molested by a man in full-blown sex, she would have no longer had a hymen intact.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What is it that seems to draw us to this senseless killing when there are so many others?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s like a whodunnit. It`s really very strange.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s a real mystery and it`s very sad.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A little girl found killed in her own home.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We want to know who`s involved, who their suspects are. And I think that`s -- that`s the whole story right there, the mystery.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s wealth and beauty.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was a beautiful child and a beautiful family.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There`s a lot of money in that family. And I would -- I would just keep it shut. You know, why is it -- it`s so sad.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s kind of scary. I think a lot of people with children here in Boulder are really scared.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police say it was a one-time occurrence, but it was a violent death. JonBenet`s skull was fractured. She was sexually assaulted. Her hands were bound, her mouth taped shut. She was strangled with a rope.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How could anyone human do anything to harm a child? It`s really disturbing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And now there are disturbing crime scene photographs a supermarket tabloid is running.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is something that means a great deal to the Boulder community. But the reality is that we are -- this situation is a curiosity to the rest of the country. And quite frankly, it is a sick curiosity in some ways.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here in Boulder, there is compassion. Not everyone is going to sell the tabloid, including a major supermarket chain and the owner of this newsstand.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s like if it was my little girl or your little girl, this is not what you`d want to see.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Maybe it`s the thought of someone possibly getting away with murder that disturbs us. Maybe this just seems too unbelievable.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There are some very, very obvious problems with the story that we`ve heard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Little girls are innocent, pure thing in the universe. And whenever something happens to them, it shakes our belief in the innocence and purity of the world.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In a case full of plot twists, there was even intrigue about how the book was being released. The publisher ordered stores not to sell "The Death of Innocence" until noon. It was stamped right on the boxes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Actually, even "Titanic" wasn`t even that strict, which amazes me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bud Halberg (ph) manages Media Play on the 16th Street mall. The Ramsey arrival is prominently displayed in the book section and at the front entrance upstairs. During our hour-long visit, most people gave the book only a passing glance. But Linda Eggers (ph) bought a copy, eagerly handing over the $25.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My daughter and I are very interested. We`ve actually been to the house, walked through the yard, looked in the windows when it first happened.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now she reads and watches everything she can about the case, hoping for answers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What had been going on maybe in their lives beforehand? Like, if Mr. Ramsey was with somebody who was angry with him. Was there a lot of people in the house that could have had access to keys? Just things that you`ve heard different things on, and I want to hear what they have to say about those things.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Book shopper Becky Emory (ph) has heard enough about the Ramseys.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think they should have just gone to the authorities and told their story instead of making money off of it. Most of the people I talk to are appalled by the whole thing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So slow sales at Media Play. But just down the street, Barnes & Noble`s reports one buyer scooped up almost all its copies. And for now, this location is sold out.


GRACE: Interesting also in the home, the note, the ransom note. Now, who would come into someone`s home, a burglar, and write what, a three-page ransom note? It sounded like a 5th grade girl had written it that was trying to write about intrigue and kidnapping and ransoms.

But what`s so interesting is not only did they use a notepad from in the home and Patsy Ramsey`s pen, they had a practice note. So the person obviously was not afraid they would be detected, felt quite at home in the Ramseys` home because they could kick back and write a full-blown ransom note, scratch that, and write another. Three pages. Interesting.


KING: You had said recently in an interview that you were willing to take a lie detector test, and apparently, the Boulder police are now saying, Let`s set it up. Will you do it?

JOHN RAMSEY: We have -- we were asked had we been asked to take a lie detector test. We said no. We were asked would we? We said, certainly, we would. We would expect it to be fair, and we would expect the results to be public.

KING: And then you would take -- well, by fair, what`s the determination of that, Patsy?

PATSY RAMSEY: Well, I think it has to be someone of...

KING: National repute?

PATSY RAMSEY: ... national repute...


PATSY RAMSEY: ... independent, you know, a professional polygrapher.

JOHN RAMSEY: You know, we`ve been told that -- that this is a dangerous thing to take a lie detector test because they`re -- they`re a subjective science. They`re not allowed in court as evidence.


JOHN RAMSEY: In Colorado, even if both sides agree, they`re not allowed in court.

KING: In the right hands, though...

JOHN RAMSEY: In the right -- we have nothing to hide. And if they work, and if it will advance the cause of finding the killer of our daughter, we`ll do it. Simple.


GRACE: The ransom note. Of course, there was no ransom because this note was left asking for $118,000, the exact amount of a bonus that John Ramsey had just gotten. Who would know that? But it wasn`t a ransom note. It appeared to be one. In exchange for $118,000, you`ll get JonBenet back. But then they went, Oh, forget it, I`ll just kill her and leave her in the basement.

So it made absolutely no sense. It was such a staged scene by someone that obviously was in no rush to -- you know, to stage the scene. The ransom note said, Use your good Southern common sense, to John Ramsey. Who would use that? Who would say something like, Try to grow a brain, in a ransom note.

This was not a hastily written note. It was very in-depth. It was a fantasy note. It was not real. Who took the time to do that?


KING: What happened that day?

JOHN RAMSEY: December 26th?

GRACE: The 26th.

JOHN RAMSEY: We were planning to leave for Charlevoix (ph), which is -- we have a summer cottage up there. We did have. We were going to rendezvous with our older kids for a first ever family Christmas all together in Michigan. We were to leave early that morning, fly to Michigan.

KING: Morning after Christmas?

JOHN RAMSEY: The morning after.

KING: What happened that night? What`s the first thing that -- what`s the first thing you remember, Patsy?

PATSY RAMSEY: The first thing I remember is waking up, getting dressed hurriedly, going downstairs, and putting a few things together to pack to take on the plane.

KING: It`s about what time?

PATSY RAMSEY: It`s early morning, before daylight.

KING: You`re up?



KING: Then what happens?

PATSY RAMSEY: Then I go down the spiral staircase, and there on one of the runs of the stair is the three-page ransom note.

KING: And no one has entered the house? The door isn`t open? You read the note.

PATSY RAMSEY: I don`t know that...


PATSY RAMSEY: Well, I hurriedly read it. You know, I -- and didn`t take long to understand what was happening. And I ran back upstairs and pushed open her bedroom door, and she was gone.

KING: Did you think it -- you knew it was her by the note, right?

PATSY RAMSEY: Well, it said "your daughter."

KING: Yes. You were not concerned about Burke? Did you check Burke?


JOHN RAMSEY: We checked really quickly.

KING: You brought the note to John?

PATSY RAMSEY: I don`t remember. I tell you, you just -- you know, that morning...

KING: You remember how you got the note?

PATSY RAMSEY: ... is so chaotic.

KING: You don`t?

PATSY RAMSEY: I don`t remember exactly, but...

JOHN RAMSEY: Well, it was -- it was...

PATSY RAMSEY: I started screaming, There`s a note, you know.

KING: And you look in JonBenet`s room, she`s not there. And what`s the first thing you do?

JOHN RAMSEY: Larry, we don`t remember. This is three years ago. We`ve been through this a hundred times.

KING: You wrote a book about it. So I mean, you must have said...

JOHN RAMSEY: We -- we outlined in the book...

KING: Basically.

JOHN RAMSEY: I felt like I`d been kicked by a horse, the most horrible feeling. If you`ve ever had that pang of missing your child in a shopping center just for a moment, that pain hit me squarely between the eyes. And it never left. It was a horrible feeling.

PATSY RAMSEY: You don`t know what to do first. You don`t know what to do. You`re just panicking.

KING: Call the police right away?


PATSY RAMSEY: Called the police right away.

KING: 911 or...


KING: And what did they do?

JOHN RAMSEY: They -- a uniformed police officer arrived relatively quickly. And I said -- I handed him the note. I said, My daughter`s been taken. He said, Gee, aren`t you -- you don`t think she just ran away? And I said, For heaven`s sakes, she`s 6 years old. No, she didn`t just run away.

KING: No sign of foul play at this point.

PATSY RAMSEY: We weren`t looking. We were...

KING: I mean, there was no foul play in her room.

PATSY RAMSEY: We didn`t go back into...


PATSY RAMSEY: She was not in...

KING: So what did the officer do?

JOHN RAMSEY: Asked us to go into one room, put us in one room.

KING: And he searched the house?

JOHN RAMSEY: We don`t -- I don`t remember...

KING: You don`t know what he did?

JOHN RAMSEY: Don`t know what he did.

KING: This is hard. When was the first time you saw your daughter, after all of this? You got the note. How long after this did you see JonBenet?

JOHN RAMSEY: You mean when did I find her?

KING: Yes.

JOHN RAMSEY: Well, I found her later that morning...

KING: Hours?


KING: Where were you during those hours? You`re thinking she`s been kidnapped?

JOHN RAMSEY: Oh, absolutely. We thought we were dealing with a kidnapping.

KING: Fearing the worst?

PATSY RAMSEY: The police arrive...

JOHN RAMSEY: Absolutely. You don`t know whether you`re going to see your daughter in an hour, in a day, in a year, in 10 years, or never. It`s a horrible feeling.



GRACE: Now, interesting, there was an open window in the basement. Below the window was a suitcase. That is not where the suitcases were commonly stored. There was also a scuff mark on the wall. Also was found a footprint to a high-tech type hiking boot which cannot be linked back to any known shoes in the home.

Just right off the top, there are glaring problems with the police investigation. And I don`t like coming down on the police. They`re here to help us, not hurt us. But keep in mind this was the only homicide in Boulder that year.

First of all, police told John Ramsey to search his own home. Problem! They did not immediately separate John and Patsy Ramsey and question them. And then there became a big tug-of-war about whether they would cooperate with police and be questioned.

There`s just so much drama surrounding them coming in for questioning. You know, maybe they felt that they had already been targeted, and so they -- they didn`t want to go down that road. Maybe that`s why they didn`t do it.

But instead of immediately separating them and questioning them, it became a high drama to, you know, question them, interrogate them and get a statement from them later on.

Not only that, as I recall, police let family, friends, you know, everybody was pouring in and out of the home the whole morning for hours -- hours -- a contaminated crime scene. Even if evidence had been found, the contamination argument would surface at trial.


PATSY RAMSEY: If I were a resident of Boulder, I would tell my friends to keep -- keep your babies close to you! There`s someone out there!


GRACE: Then there were public statements. I recall Patsy Ramsey stating that she wondered if this had been a vendetta against John Ramsey`s company, which makes no sense whatsoever, that the city wasn`t safe, that everyone should protect their children.

Immediately the next day, the mayor gave their own press conference, saying the town was safe and there was not a killer on the loose, as Patsy Ramsey had said the day before.


GRACE: The case was so bungled from the get-go. I mean, even if they ever did charge someone, it -- it`s so highly contaminated and compromised, I don`t think it could ever be proven.

Now, here`s an interesting note. Over 300 media were in town covering the story in Boulder. Why did America latch onto JonBenet`s life and death? I think possibly because there were so many reams and reams of video of her that you felt like you got to know her. You saw so much video, so many pictures, you heard so much about it. And who couldn`t, who wouldn`t love JonBenet Ramsey?

Also, their family seemed so picture perfect. You know, John Ramsey, many people believe, is handsome. He`s successful. He`s got a lovely wife. She`s beautiful. The daughter`s beautiful. The son is smart. You know, everything -- beautiful home, the American dream, you know, went straight to crap.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It really is a testament to the courage of Alex Hunter, the district attorney, to stand up and to fulfill his oath of office as a prosecutor and to not bring charges that would have resulted in a gross miscarriage of justice because innocent people would have been charged with a crime they did not commit.


GRACE: We then learned about a secret grand jury that had been apparently investigating the case for over a year. At the end of that grand jury investigation, it was deemed there was insufficient evidence to go forward with charging anyone. The case was ultimately closed.

There have been reports that touch DNA has cleared all members of the Ramsey family. And the district attorney offered an apology to John Ramsey.