Samuel Goldberg has been a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney for 20 years. Prior to that, he was a New York state prosecutor. He has published various articles regarding the practice of criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on outlets such as the Fox News Channel, Court TV, MSNBC and The BBC Network. To speak to Sam about a criminal matter call (617) 492 3000.

New DNA Evidence Clears JonBenet Ramsey’s Family of Her Murder

Nearly 12 years after the murder of JonBenet Ramsey, her family has finally been cleared of any involvement in her death. The body of the six-year-old beauty queen was found in the basement of her home in Boulder, Colorado, on December 26, 1996 and for years, her father John, her mother Patsy (now deceased), and her brother Burke were considered among the leading possible suspects in her slaying. They were never, however, formally declared suspects.

JonBenet’s family has always maintained their innocence, but the media reports alluding to their possible involvement damaged their reputations. Today, the Boulder District Attorney’s Office released a letter officially clearing John, Patsy, Burke, and all immediate relatives of having any part in her murder. DA Mary Lacy formally apologized for being unable to clear their names before, and, moving forward, her office promised to treat the family as victims in the JonBenet murder. The announcement came after a new testing method using “touch samples” proved that none of the Ramsey family members’ DNA is a match for the new evidence discovered in her case.

Tests in March indicate that a pair of long johns found on JonBenet’s body contained DNA belonging to an “unknown male” that matched a DNA sample taken from JonBenet’s underwear. Tests were also conducted to make sure that the DNA did not come from medical examiner or law enforcement employees. This latest DNA was also used to exonerate John Mark Karr, who in 2006 confessed to killing JonBenet, of her murder.

In a televised interview, John Ramsey expressed gratitude at the formal acknowledgement that he, Patsy, and Burke did not play any part in JonBenet’s murder. He also expressed his continued wish that the real killer be found.

Family cleared in JonBenet Ramsey’s death, MSNBC.com, July 9, 2008
DNA clears JonBenet’s family, points to mystery killer, CNN.com, July 9, 2008

Related Web Resources:

Read the DA’s Letter to John Ramsey

JonBenet Timeline, CBS News.com
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