It was the early morning, just one day after Christmas in 1996, when Patsy Ramsey made the 9-1-1 call to report that her daughter, 6-year-old JonBenet, was missing from the Ramsey’s home in Colorado. Left behind was a ransom note demanding that JonBenet’s family hand over $118,000.
Police arrived to the Ramsey’s home and were immediately greeted by John Ramsey. John claimed he had checked the doors and they had all been locked, meaning whomever had taken JonBenet may have gained access to the home through some other means. Police cased the home and determined there were no signs of forced entry. Several hours after the police arrived, John Ramsey emerged from the basement carrying JonBenet’s lifeless body.
Within the basement room was a broken window, but dust and cobwebs appeared to have undisturbed and there were no footprints leading from the home to be found in the freshly fallen snow. A friend of the Ramseys said he had checked the entire house, but saw nothing amiss in the small basement room JonBenet’s body was discovered. The police were convinced that JonBenet’s killer was none other than someone within her own family.
December 26, 2016 will marked the 20-year anniversary of the case that continues to captivate the imagination of the public and leaves so many unanswered questions. Was it her mother, Patsy, who killed her daughter in a fit of rage? Was it sibling rivalry gone too far, as some have suggested? Was it a terrorist organization, as the ransom note left in the family’s home suggested? Had John Ramsey been molesting his own little girl? Or was it someone else entirely?
It would be years before DNA evidence exonerated John, Patsy and son Burke of JonBenet’s murder. Patsy would die of ovarian cancer before that day arrived, and JonBenet’s killer has never been apprehended. John Ramsey exhausted every resource he had in order to clear his family’s name and find out the truth behind his daughter’s murder, but even that wasn’t enough to bring a child killer to justice.
Now private investigator Ollie Grey is stepping forward and says that he knows who JonBenet’s killer may have been.
In 2004, after the Ramseys were officially cleared of any wrongdoing, a new suspect’s name emerged. An electrician named Michael Helgoth was noted as making strange comments to a friend within the month leading up to JonBenet’s murder. He said he and and an associate were going to make a lot of money and made a comment that he wondered what it would be like to crack a human skull. A year after JonBenet’s body was found, police held a press conference suggesting that their suspect list was beginning to narrow. Two days later, Michael Helgoth committed suicide.
Grey believes that there is even more bizarre circumstances surrounding Helgoth’s death and says that evidence shows that this was no suicide. The right-handed man was found with a gun on his left side, and though reports stated there was wounds to his head, the bullet wounds were nowhere near the vicinity. Grey believes that Helgoth had at least one accomplice and, fearing that Helgoth would crack under the pressure of law enforcement, had him killed before he could speak with the investigators.
CBS now has a Making a Murderer-inspired mini-series in the works on the JonBenet Ramsey case. What sort of new light will be shed on the possible murder suspects, and will we ever really know who killed the child beauty queen once and for all?