Did Patsy Ramsey Kill JonBenét?

During an Internet search, I came across a page where the writer set forth his idea that Patsy Ramsey murdered her daughter JonBenét. I have reproduced the page here and included my comments. The original page's words themselves, shown in strong type, are edited only for spelling. The writer holds the copyright and reproduction here is in no way meant to challenge his rights. The writer's page, entitled WHO KILLED JONBENÉT RAMSEY, was formerly available at http://www.anotherview.com/jrb.htm. However, it has since been removed.

It is not likely that someone entered the Ramsey's locked home, without leaving signs of a forced entry.

It has been reported that, for whatever reason, there were about 20 keys to the house that were held by people other than John, Patsy, or Burke Ramsey. It is also possible that one of the several downstairs doors was left unlocked in this low-crime area. Finally, there was always the broken grate and window in the basement.

Made their way undetected through the complex maze that was their home. Identified JonBenét's room, abducted her and carried her to an obscure area in the basement where they tortured, molested, and ultimately killed her...

The writer uses "their" indicating plural. However, from context, I feel he intended "his" or "her."

To answer the above speculation:

washed her body down and changed her clothes...

I was not aware that the body had been washed and the clothes changed. In fact, urine stains were found in JonBenét's panties, indicating that they had not been changed.

Then, with Patsy's pen and pad, attempted one, and completed another ransom note. Ultimately depositing the ransom note on an out-of-the-way staircase.

It is not likely that the ransom note was written after the murder. It would take a cold-blooded killer of a special kind to commit such a terrible crime and then write such a long detailed note. Since the murderer was probably in the house for sometime before the Ramseys arrived home, it is plausible that he or she wrote the note during that time.

Finally exiting, without arousing any of the three occupants of the house...

Burke's room was on the second floor and John and Patsy's was on the third in a converted attic. People easily slip in and out of one floor houses without waking anyone. It would be even easier to slip out of such a large house without being noticed.

... and without leaving tire marks or footprints in the snow...

There was only a light dusting of snow, nothing deep. Even this light amount of snow had been removed from the walk. Therefore, footprints would not exist. No one (save the killer) knows where the getaway vehicle was parked, so no one knew where to look for tracks.


Hence, the outsider theory is implausible, but if not an outsider...


Not so implausible if you consider all the options.


 ...then John, Patsy and Burke are all that is left, and the question becomes who among them did it. Burke is easy to eliminate. At nine, he couldn't conceive of, never mind execute the things that were done to his sister. First, he couldn't overpower her sufficient to keep her quiet during the trip from her bedroom to the basement and, at his age, and with his slight built, he could not carry her, which means she would have had to walk to the basement with him.

Not to add any credence to the idea Burke is the killer, but he could have simply awakened JonBenét and lured her to the basement with any number of let's-be-mischievous-kids ideas. I do not believe, however, that this is what happened.

Also, children think concretely, causing their actions to be to the point. They don't fool around with the ritualism and symbolism that is born out of the twisted adult mind, they just do what they feel. A child wouldn't engage in the ritualistic, torturous form of sexual abuse, that was ascribed to JonBenét's killer. The only thing that happened to JonBenét, that Burke was capable of accomplishing, was the blow to the head with a heavy object. However, it is not likely that he could have applied the level of force required to bring about the degree of injury that she sustained. But what finally eliminates Burke is that he could not have executed the cover up, and it is impossible to believe that his parents would have engaged in a massive cover-up, that included defacing their daughter's body, and perpetrating perverse ideas respecting her death, in order to cover up for a nine year old child who, at the most would probably only receive needed psychiatric help. In fact, the leniency toward minors has led some adults responsible for crimes to falsely implicate their children, in order to avoid the harsher penalty that they would receive as adults. Surely it wouldn't make sense to create so much ugliness and suspicion around the Ramsey family in order to protect Burke.

I agree with the writer completely on these points.

If not Burke, then John and Patsy, acting together, or one of them acting alone... John and Patsy Ramsey didn't act together because two idiots would have come up with a better plan than to invite the police into their home, while the body of their murder victim remained hidden in their house, offering a ransom note, written on their paper, with their pen, in a writing style, like their own, to explain the child's disappearance...

I have to agree. However, had JonBenét been killed accidentally by the blow to the head (perhaps John or Patsy slapped her and she fell against something), then they could have panicked and failed to use good sense in their staging. The idea that this child was killed in a fit of rage is unlikely enough. It is even more unlikely that either parent would have gone to such heinous extremes in abusing their daughter's corpse.

Indeed, Patsy and John are both intelligent people, and they would have devised a better plan.


Every murderer either disposes of a corpse or distances himself from it, but in this case, the police were invited into the home while the body was still at the scene!

Lizzy Borden had the police brought into her home while the bodies of her father and stepmother were there. In light of the evidence, Lizzy was the killer. I don't want it to sound like I am trying to incriminate the Ramseys. I am simply pointing out that in this instance and in others, the writer's logic is faulty.

Also, correspondences from criminals are notorious in their design to avoid association with the document. Most are letters cut out of printed materials, or they are typed on machines that do not belong to the criminal. But this ransom note was handwritten! The ultimate faux pas...

The kidnapper(s) of the Lindbergh baby handwrote multiple ransom notes. The Unabomber's downfall came because he wrote his letters by hand. The examples go on...

Working together, John and Patsy would have staged a kidnapping that would have been believable. They would have disposed of the body and all of the implements of the crime, and drafted a ransom note that could not be associated with them. But the perpetrator did none of these things because the guilty parent did not have the assistance of the other parent, and they were inhibited by the other's presence.

If one of the two parents was guilty, he or she could have at least stashed the pad and pen (or marker) used to write the ransom note. Had one parent killed the child without the other parent's knowledge, how hard would it have been to secret away the pad and pen? If Patsy killed JonBenét, she would have very likely avoided using something specific to her (namely the paintbrush handle from her art kit). The item used to cause the injury to JonBenét's head was never identified.

Indeed, the ransom note was not to convince the police of a kidnapping, it was to convince the innocent parent of a kidnapping. Indeed, the perpetrator never intended for the ransom note to get into the hands of the police.

The writer already stated that John and Patsy were intelligent people. If that is the case (and I believe it is), then why would he or she be stupid enough to believe that the innocent parent would not give the ransom note to the police?

JonBenét's murderer needed to accomplish two things: 1) explain JonBenét's absence to their spouse; and 2) dispose of the evidence of the crime, including the corpse. With those goals in mind, the murderer would want to deliver the information about the child's disappearance in a manner that would enable them to control the situation, so that they could effectuate a cover-up. Therefore, the killer needed to "find" the ransom note, in order to influence their spouse's reaction.

When you tell a parent that his or her daughter has been kidnapped, it is impossible to influence the reaction.

But the plan fell apart. John Ramsey, described as a man who defers to his wife in family matters, even subordinating his discomfort respecting JonBenét's pageant activities, to his wife's judgment, probably perceived the "kidnapping," which posed a threat to JonBenét's life, as his turf. Hence, he asserted the authority and leadership that led to his business success in addressing the situation. He probably insisted on police involvement, and then went on to inform the police that the doors and windows were locked, delivering to them family writing pads and pens, and handwriting samples, and ultimately the corpse.

John stated he thought the doors were locked. However, he could have been mistaken. During the initial police search, downstairs windows and a door were found unlocked. It is only natural that the victim's parents would deliver all the requested items to police.

In pursuit of the truth, John Ramsey probably came to see the same thing that his best friend, Fleet White, saw as they encountered the evidence together. Only the truth became unbearable for John, while Fleet insisted that they follow the evidence to its reasonable conclusion, and that difference brought their friendship to an end...
What they saw was the irrational and unnatural behavior of Patsy Ramsey, including her request for Jesus to raise JonBenét from the dead...

Why is it irrational and unnatural for a parent grieving over the murder of her daughter to fall upon her faith, especially a faith that records such things as Lazarus being raised from the dead? She was desperate but her desperation couldn't bring back her beloved JonBenét.

... contradictions in her story...

Because the alleged contradictions are not listed, I cannot answer them.

... and covering her face with her hands, only to peek through her fingers to observe a police detective's reaction.

This is a matter of perception and perceptions are often mistaken or even skewed. This would hardly make me believe someone was a killer even if I myself had observed it.

Finally, Patsy Ramsey found the ransom note, placed on an obscure stairway, used almost exclusively by her...

Having seen copies of the house's floor plan, I was not under the impression that the spiral stairway was obscure. Even if it was, the killer was obviously familiar with the house and would have found it. Finally, if John didn't use that stairway, why wouldn't Patsy have placed the note where he would be the one to find it? Since the contention put forth here is that she was trying to influence John, then it would have made more sense for him to discover the ransom note.

Patsy Ramsey alone killed JonBenét.

I don't think so. Even if she was the killer, the ideas put forth by the writer are insufficient to even bring about that suspicion.

Note: this is an opinion piece, and is not to be considered as fact.

Duly noted.




Patricia “Patsy” Ramsey died in June 2006.


On August 16, 2006, John Mark Karr was arrested for and confessed to the killing of JonBenét. He claimed it was an accident. His confession was a false one so he was never charged with the crime.

Thanks to (the now removed) www.oocities.com/Colosseum/5122/ramsey2.htm for the photo.

Visit Essay 1962 Home.


Created:           01/18/2002

Last Edited:      01/04/2007