JonBenet Ramsey murder: Will new DNA testing finally nab 6-yr-old beauty queen's killer?
Over two decades after JonBenet Ramsey was killed, police say that DNA has not yet been ruled out to help solve the chilling case
BOULDER, COLORADO: Over two decades after JonBenet Ramsey was killed, police say that DNA profiling has not yet been ruled out to help solve the chilling case. On December 26, 1996, the six-year-old beauty queen was found dead in the basement of her family’s Boulder home. Ramsey had been bludgeoned and strangled to death. Her mother had called 911 to report her daughter missing and shortly after, the girl's body was found. Ramsey's death was ruled a homicide, but nobody has was ever charged for her murder.
Boulder police recently said that they are working closely with state investigators on “future DNA advancements." “As the department continues to use new technology to enhance the investigation, it is actively reviewing genetic DNA testing processes to see if those can be applied to this case moving forward,” police said. Several suspects have been identified in recent years by comparing DNA profiles from crime scenes and to DNA testing results shared online by people researching their family trees. One of these suspects was the Golden State Killer in California.
Back in 2008, newly discovered DNA on Ramsey's clothing suggested there could be the involvement of an “unexplained third party” in her murder. The new discovery pointed at the fact that her killers were not her parents, John and Patsy Ramsey, or their son, Burke. The Ramseys were thus cleared of any involvement in the case.
The autopsy of JonBenet's body showed that she had been killed by strangulation and a skull fracture. The official cause of death was listed as "asphyxia by strangulation associated with craniocerebral trauma." The autopsy did not show any signs of conventional rape, but sexual assault was not ruled out. Although there was no semen found, there was evidence of a vaginal injury. The pathologist also noted that it appeared her vaginal area had been wiped with a cloth.
In December 2003, foreign investigators extracted enough material from a mixed blood sample found on JonBenet's underwear to establish the DNA profile of an unknown male person. This DNA profile was then used to rule out JonBenet's parents as suspects in the murder. To date, the DNA sample has not been matched with any profile in the FBI's CODIS.
Over the years, many possibile suspects for JonBenet's murder have cropped up. Significant among these is former school teacher John Mark Karr, who randomly owned up to the murder in 2006. However, he was cleared when the DNA analysis did not match his to the profile found on the scene.