JonBenet Ramsey: Colorado Grand Jury Wanted Parents Charged With Her Murder
WHAT happened to JonBenet Ramsey in 1996? The six-year-old beauty pageant contestant was found beaten and strangled in her Colorado home in December 1996.
Who did it? Some have blamed her parents.
In 1999, a grand jury in Colorado agreed to indict Patricia and John Bennet Ramsay for child abuse. But a District Attorney did not order a prosecution. The then DA Alex Hunter said there was not enough evidence to prosecute the Ramseys. He said:
“I and my prosecutorial team believe we do not have sufficient evidence to warrant the filing of charges against anyone who has been investigated at this time.”
The BBC notes:
US grand juries are convened in secret and tasked with determining whether enough evidence exists to bring a suspect to trial. But prosecutors must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict – a substantially higher bar.
We know this because of a Freedom of Information Request filed by the Boulder Daily Camera.
Patricia Ramsey died of cancer in 2006. John Bennet Ramsay says he’s innocent. His lawyer agrees. He says the newly released papers reveal “nothing about the evidence reviewed by the grand jury and are clearly the result of a confused and compromised process… The documents today are a mere historical footnote, a small glimpse into the grand jury proceedings. It’s four pages of what would have likely been hundreds of volumes of testimony and exhibit.”
The grand jury decided:
On or between Dec. 25 and Dec. 26, 1996 in Boulder County, Colo., [the Ramseys] did unlawfully, knowingly, recklessly and feloniously permit a child to be unreasonably placed in a situation which posed a threat of injury to the child’s life or health, which resulted in the death of JonBenet Ramsey, a child under the age of sixteen.
On or between Dec. 25 and Dec. 26, 1996 in Boulder County, Colo., [the Ramseys] did unlawfully, knowingly and feloniously render assistance to a person, with intent to hinder, delay and prevent the discovery, detention, apprehension, prosecution, conviction and punishment of such person for the commission of a crime, knowing the person being assisted has committed and was suspected of the crime of Murder in the First Degree and Child Abuse Resulting in Death
And that’s it.
In 2008, DA Mary Lacy, said new DNA evidence cleared the Ramseys and their son in JonBenet’s murder. She said evidence pointed to a stranger.
No-one has been convicted of the crime.