6-year-old pageant star JonBenet Ramsey's murder could be the work of two masterminds in a kidnapping gone wrong
JonBenet Ramsey was found bludgeoned, strangled and hidden underneath a white blanket with a nylon cord around her neck in her home in Boulder, Colorado in 1996 on December 26
JonBenet Ramsey was discovered dead in her home in Boulder, Colorado in 1996 on December 26, just a day after Christmas. When she died, she was only six years old and was discovered by her father John Ramsey eight hours after she was reported missing.
JonBenet was found bludgeoned, strangled and hidden underneath a white blanket with a nylon cord around her neck. Her wrists had been bound above her head while her mouth was covered using duct tape. Police have no clue as to what happened that fateful day and now, over two decades later, the child's death still remains unsolved generating numerous conspiracy theories and headlines.
A new documentary 'Hunting JonBenet's Killer: An Untold Story' which features on the A&E network is attempting to find some answers about one of the world's most notorious cold cases. Since the murder, there have been multiple theories and claims as to what could have happened to little JonBenet and who her suspected killers could be.
One theory has been put forth by a 68-year-old Colorado woman, Bernice Johnson, who is locked up in prison at the Denver Women's Correctional Facility. She believes that her former partner and baby daddy Todd Fuss was involved in the crime. Johnson, who wrote several letters to the documentary's producer David Tomasini, is of the opinion that the murder of JonBenet was actually a hired kidnapping that had gone horribly wrong.
Johnson claims that there is no way that Fuss had acted alone and had help from a man named Michael Helgoth who worked at a junkyard. For many years, Helgoth was part of a theory which stated that there were two intruders. Even before Johnson had come out with the theory, Michael Helgoth was on the radar.
In 1997, the District Attorney Alex Hunter came on TV and said, " I want to say something to the persons who took this baby from us, the list of suspects narrows. Soon there will be no one on the list but you." According to investigator John San Agustin, the thought behind such a statement was to put a lot of pressure to the killer/killers which could result in them turning themselves in, or them considering committing suicide, or it if involves multiple people — one could kill the other.
As it turned out, Helgoth was discovered dead in Boulder, Colorado, just a day after Alex's news conference with a stun gun near his hand. There was also a pair of hi-tech boots found in his room with a shoe print similar to one found at the scene. One of Helgoth's friends, who was convinced that Helgoth was involved, handed an impression of the boot to the Ramseys who gave it to the authorities.
The authorities, however, believe that the boots were of the wrong size and quickly dismissed the claims. According to Johnson, Fuss would take her to the same junkyard where Helgoth worked and Fuss was "chummy" with the folks who worked there. Johnson also revealed that at the time, she and Fuss had gone to the junkyard to look for car parts for her MG.
Johnson shared that Fuss seemed to know that the Helgoth junkyard had the same car parts which she needed. A man who used to work with Helgoth, John Kenady, believes that Helgoth was most certainly involved in the murder of little JonBenet Ramsey. According to Kenady, Helgoth had wanted to know "what it would be like to crack a human skull."
After his bizarre statement, Helgoth's most prized possession, which was his flashlight, turned up missing. On the scene of the crime, the Ramseys claimed that they had found an unidentified flashlight on the kitchen counter the day that JonBenet was murdered.
When asked if Helgoth was showing any strange or suspicious behavior around the time of the murder, Kenady recalled how in late November, Helgoth had said, "Me and a partner are going to make $50-60K each." Helgoth called this a "killer deal" and the overall amount matched the same as what was on the ransom note found at the Ramsey home.
Post that Christmas when Kenady asked Helgoth about the deal, he said it went by the "wayside". Post the murder of JonBenet, Helgoth changed his appearance — and got a buzz cut which was very different from his long blonde hair. Kenady also recognized a picture of Todd Fuss and said that he could have come into the yard.
However since Helgoth passed, his family have been reluctant to provide any DNA sample which led to a dead end. This is when the focus shifted back to Todd Fuss who agreed to an interview but denied ever hurting JonBenet.
After detectives interrogated Todd and asked him if he were ready to submit to a DNA test, he willingly agreed to give the swabs then and there. However, Todd's DNA was not found to be matching with the crime.