John Ramsey, the father of JonBenét Ramsey who was 6 years old when she was found dead in the basement of her Boulder, Colorado home in 1996, has made a plea to further analyze DNA to help solve the cold case. Now, the Boulder Police Department has responded.
During an appearance at a CrimeCon, a convention for true crime fanatics, in Las Vegas on Sunday, Ramsey was asked what he has done to help find his daughter’s killer — who has yet to be identified 26 after the murder. He said he has offered to pay for the testing of DNA evidence, but has been turned down.
Following the event, the Boulder Police Department, which has been investigating in the headline-making case since 1996, responded to Ramsey’s comments.
The department said in a statement that it was “aware of the recent request … and wants the community to know that it has never wavered in its pursuit to bring justice to everyone affected by the murder of this little girl.
“Ever since Dec. 26, 1996, detectives have followed up on every lead that has come into the department, to include more than 21,016 tips, letters and emails and traveling to 19 states to interview or speak with more than 1,000 individuals in connection to this crime.”
The police department said the case has been under constant review with federal, state, and local partners and they have met with these partners as well as DNA experts from around the country as recently as March.
Police said DNA from “multiple suspects” has been run through the system over the years. “As of this past December, [Colorado’s Bureau of Investigation] has updated over 750 reference samples with the latest DNA technology,” the police department said, adding DNA is regularly checked for new matches.
“We have a shared goal to bring justice—and hopefully some peace—to JonBenét’s family and everyone who was impacted by her loss,” Police Chief Maris Herold said in a statement. “Our investigation with federal, state and local partners has never stopped. That includes new ways to use DNA technology.” Herold said state-of-the-art technology has been used and the investigation will continue to be a priority for the department.
JonBenét was a beauty pageant queen who was reported missing the day after Christmas in 1996. A ransom note was found inside the family’s home, the Ramseys said.
John and Patsy Ramsey, the parents of JonBenét Ramsey, meet with local media in Boulder, Colorado on May 1, 1997. Patsy holds up a reward sign for information leading to the arrest of their daughter’s killer.
Helen H. Richardson/ The Denver Post via Getty Images
JonBenét body was later found their basement, and an autopsy later revealed her cause of her death was strangulation. Her parents and her brother Burke, who was 9 years old at the time, were previously cleared by DNA evidence. They were the only other people known to be in the home that night.
The case received extensive news and tabloid coverage coverage and has been the subject of several crime documentaries. In 2016, her brother spoke publicly about her death in for the first time, telling Dr. Phil McGraw “for a long time the media basically made our lives crazy.”
“It’s hard to miss the cameras and news trucks in your front yard and we go to the supermarket sometimes and there would be a tabloid with my picture, JonBenét’s picture plastered on the front or they would follow us around,” he said on the “Dr. Phil” show. “Seeing that as a little kid is just kind of a chaotic nightmare, so I was pretty skeptical of any sort of media, it just made me a very private person.”
Anyone with information related to this investigation is asked to contact the Boulder Police tip line at 303-441-1974, email BouldersMostWanted@bouldercolorado.gov or call Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or www.nococrimestoppers.com