Who Killed JonBenet Ramsey? 8 Possible Suspects - Rolling Stone
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Who Killed JonBenet Ramsey? 8 Possible Suspects

From her immediate family to the kindly neighborhood Santa Claus, a brief look at the cases for – and against – the murder’s most popular suspects

The unsolved murder of six-year-old JonBenét Ramsey never fails to spark a heated debate. Rife with conflicting theories, false confessions and a growing inventory of evidence, the 20-year-old case of who killed the tiny, blue-eyed pageant queen has become a white whale for armchair detectives and conspiracy theorists. While many adamantly believe JonBenét was accidentally killed by a member of her own family who then staged her death to look like a kidnapping, others are convinced that an intruder broke into the Ramsey home, slaughtered JonBenét and left her there for her family to find. 

Over the years of relentless and sensationalized coverage that immortalized JonBenét in tawdry pageant photos, the search to find her killer has turned into a massive game of media Clue. Was it her mother in the basement with a paint brush for a garrote? The emotionally disturbed older brother with a flashlight to the face? The family friend dressed as Santa who seemed a little too eager to visit his "special friend" on Christmas?

This fall, several television networks raced to reveal new information in what's become the ultimate cold case. But aside from hype and bombast surrounding its 20-year anniversary, no one seemed to be able to offer much but more theories. As it stands, the list of people linked to JonBenét's murder is as winding as the spiral stairs that led to her corpse in the basement. Now that we've supposedly been given all the information we'll probably get, here's a review of the alleged perps – ranging from her own parents to a child pornographer on the lamb in Thailand – who have come up in countless attempts to nail the killer behind one of America's longest and most baffling true-crime whodunits.

In This Article: Crime, JonBenet Ramsey


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