'The Case Of: JonBenet Ramsey' Suggests Burke Ramsey As A Main Suspect In JonBenet's Death
The second part of The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey aired on Monday night, and for those looking for a solid, concrete, no-more-questions answer, well, you're probably disappointed right now. As suspected, CBS was not able to solidify just what happened the night JonBenét was murdered, but the team of investigators on The Case Of certainly gave it their all, even pinning down one potential suspect by the end of the episode. On The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey, Burke Ramsey was suggested as a main suspect in the death of JonBenét, and although Burke was never a suspect within the actual police investigation, he became the focus of the show.
After the final installment of The Case Of aired, Romper reached out to Burke Ramsey's attorney, L. Lin Wood, for comment regarding the show's conclusion. Wood responded:
In its desire to match or surpass the ratings and profits achieved by other networks in recent true crime series, CBS juxtaposed lies, misrepresentations, distortions and omissions with very few grains of truth to falsely accuse Burke Ramsey of causing JonBenét’s death in its docuseries The Case of: JonBenét Ramsey. CBS intentionally avoided the truth of the mass of evidence that (1) led the Boulder District Attorney and Boulder Police Department to publicly and officially confirm in May of 1999 that Burke Ramsey was not a suspect or even a possible suspect; (2) supported the 2003 finding by Georgia Federal Judge Julie Carnes that "abundant evidence" supported assertions by JonBenét's parents, "that an intruder entered their home at some point during the night of Dec. 25, 1996, and killed their daughter”; and (3) led the Boulder District Attorney to publicly exonerate the Ramsey Family in 2008 based on conclusive DNA evidence.
The accusations of the CBS so-called “experts” lack substantial evidentiary support and contradict the conclusions reached by legitimate law enforcement authorities familiar with the evidence developed in the case. CBS’ false and unprofessional attacks on this young man are disgusting and revolting.
No fair-minded person can condone this false and heinous television attack by CBS on this young man for ratings and profits. Burke Ramsey shall seek redress against CBS for its outrageous accusations in a court of law where he successfully acquitted himself over 15 years ago in libel actions filed against the tabloid Star Magazine, the New York Post and Court TV for publishing similar false accusations.
Romper reached out to CBS regarding Wood's statement but had not heard back at the time of publication.
The CBS docu-series followed a group of renown investigators, specialists, and experts in their respective fields trying to solve a case that has been open for 20 years. Throughout the series, multiple avenues were explored, but the final 15 minutes really homed in on one potential theory of what happened on the night JonBenét was killed. While the investigators made claims that suggested Burke could have been involved in his sister's death that winter, CBS aired a disclaimer at the end of the show that read as follows:
The killing of JonBenét Ramsey is a crime that, to this day, remains unsolved. The opinions and conclusions of the investigators who appear on the program about how it may have occurred represent just some of a number of possible scenarios. John Ramsey and Burke Ramsey have denied involvement in the crime, including in recent televised interviews. We encourage viewers to reach their own conclusions.
Throughout the series, multiple theories were presented. It is important to note, though, that while it appears the investigators landed on and agreed with one specific theory, many theories were not presented as part of the series. For instance, John Mark Karr confessed to killing JonBenét Ramsey, but the charges were later dropped because of DNA evidence.
Another suspect at one time, according to CNN, was Bill Reynolds. This particular theory is more famously known as the Santa Claus theory in which Bill Reynolds played a Santa Claus that JonBenét visited before her death. CNN writes:
Investigators were intrigued by the fact the McReynolds' daughter had been abducted 22 years before JonBenet's death ... to the day. And Janet McReynolds had written a play about a child who was molested in her basement, then murdered. The couple gave hair, handwriting and blood samples, but were eventually cleared thanks to DNA tests. Bill McReynolds died back in 2002.
Janet McReynolds, who now goes by a different name, did not respond to Romper's comment regarding the public suspicion she and her husband faced at the time.
During the second and final episode, Jim Clemente and his team of investigators seemed to suggest that Burke Ramsey could have very well been behind his sister's death. All of the experts seemed to agree that if that were the case, the killing was unintentional. They discussed how the parents of both kids might have felt the need to cover up the tragic occurrence, even though John, Patsy, and Burke Ramsey were all exonerated by DNA evidence in 2008. That year in an open letter to John Ramsey, Boulder County district attorney Mary T. Lacy wrote that the evidence "has vindicated [The Ramsey] family" and that no one from the Ramsey family was “under any suspicion in the commission of this crime.”
Clemente and team also reached the conclusion that the crime scene was staged to mislead and cover up what really happened there. They said that it appeared to be engineered to look like a "monster predator" had come into the house before killing JonBenét. Clemente even suggested that the Ramseys simply didn't want law enforcement to solve the case — a big statement considering Patsy and John were, at least in the eyes of the law, simply grieving parents who just lost a child, not murderers.
The special, while one-sided, certainly puts the 20-year-old case back on the public's radar yet again, potentially sparking interest in reinvestigating the never-closed case. Could this be the start of a series of answers, whether they follow the lead of the special or not? Or will this be a book without a final chapter? It appears that we may never know what happened to JonBenét the day she was killed — but there is no doubt that a lot of energy, a lot of money, and a lot of time has gone into trying to solve one of the most mysterious cases of the past 20 years.