Published July 20, 2012
A new book by a lead investigator in the JonBenet Ramsey murder puts forward a new theory: There was no intruder in the home where a wealthy Colorado couple's six-year-old daughter was found murdered in 1996.
James Kolar's book, "Foreign Faction: Who Really Kidnapped JonBenet?" takes its name from the ransom note found in the home, which was signed by "a small foreign faction." But he believes the theory that an intruder broke in and wrote the note, which led to the girl's family being cleared, is bogus.
"By the time I parted company with the D.A.'s office, I was convinced that there was no significant possibility that an intruder had been involved in the death of JonBenet," Kolar writes in his book.
Kolar believes abrasions on the girl may have come from a toy and not a stun gun allegedly wielded by her killer.
Kolar, who had access to 60,000 pages of evidence, including crime-scene video and photos, interviews with individuals related to the case and forensic reports, notes that intact cobwebs stretched over the window through which the intruder allegedly entered.
The little girl was found beaten and strangled with a garrote on Dec. 26, 1996 in the basement of her family home. The bizarre ransom note, which purported to be from a group "that represent[ed] a foreign faction," asked for $118,000 in exchange for the safe return of JonBenet. The note was found hours before a search of the house turned up the dead girl.
Parents John and Patsy Ramsey were suspects for years, but were cleared 12 years later on the strength of newly discovered DNA evidence. Patsy Ramsey died in 2006 of ovarian cancer.
In 2010, investigators reopened the case, but nothing came of the effort. Boulder District Attorney Stan Garnett said in 2010 that he personally gets five or more tips each month, according to Fox31.
Kolar dedicated his book to Boulder police, who he believes were made to look like bumbling idiots. He publicly clashed with Boulder District Attorney Mary Lacy, who hired him in 2004, but later dismissed him and cleared the Ramseys.
In clearing the Ramseys, Lacy cited a DNA sample of an “unknown” male found in JonBenet’s underwear and on her leggings.
“The match of male DNA on two separate items of clothing worn by the victim at the time of the murder makes it clear to us that an unknown male handled these items,” Lacy wrote.