World

Slow justice for JonBenet

December 22 1997
World

Slow justice for JonBenet

December 22 1997

Slow justice for JonBenet

In the year since she was brutally murdered, JonBenet Ramsey has become a star of the supermarket tabloids but she has gained little justice. The six-year-old beauty queen was found savagely beaten, strangled to death and sexually assaulted on Dec. 26,1996, in the basement of her parents’ mansion in Boulder, Colo. Last week, police asked the Ramseys—still the prime suspects—to answer further questions, but the couple had yet to respond. From the outset, the case has been plagued by controversy. Police went to the Ramsey home when JonBenet’s mother Patsy, 43, reported she had found a ransom note allegedly written by kid-

nappers who described themselves as terrorists. As police waited for JonBenet’s abductors to call, John Ramsey, 53, a computer tycoon, was allowed to search the house. He emerged from the basement with his daughter’s body in his arms. His mysterious discovery contaminated the crime scene, for which police have been severely criticized amid acidic infighting with the district attorney. Throughout, the Ramseys have talked to police only reluctantly, with lawyers present. Many in Boulder believe no one will ever be charged. “I thought the case would be solved in three days,” said neighbor Joe Barnhill. “I’m baffled like everyone else.”