Last Christmas marked 20 years since the world tragically lost six-year-old JonBenét Ramsey. And while the nation was captivated by the case of the pint-sized beauty queen’s murder, to this day, who killed the adorable blonde remains a mystery.
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With last year’s anniversary of her slaying, there has been a renewed interest in the case — with countless specials dedicated to the crime, including an upcoming Netflix documentary called Casting JonBenét, which will premiere on the streaming service this weekend on April 28.
Despite two decades passing, there is still one question that people everywhere are still asking — who killed JonBenét Ramsey? Keep reading and get to know the most common theories behind her death.
Burke Ramsey (Photo Credit: CBS)
One of the most popular theories about JonBenét’s tragic demise is that the six-year-old’s then-nine-year-old brother Burke killed his sister — accidentally — and the parents staged the rest of the crime in order to protect their child.
Burke — who has remained largely out of the spotlight since his sister’s death — responded to these rumors in a rare interview with Dr. Phil last year.
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When the television doctor accused him of being “unbothered” by his sister’s death, he explained, “Yeah, well, I can tell you guys I was very emotional with the attorneys. I would just randomly cry out of nowhere. I guess it’s a combination of sitting in there with this weird guy that I never talked to before and asking me all these personal questions, it’s a combination of that and just kind of...at some point, you have to move on. I’m not saying I moved on then. It might have been kind of the other end. I didn’t really get it. You have to stop crying at some point, I guess.”
John and Patsy Ramsey. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Another popular theory is that JonBenét’s parents, John and Patsy Ramsey, were responsible for her death and staged the rest of the crime scene — including the ransom note — in order to cover up their tracks.
One version of the popular theory suggests that the late Patsy lashed out at her daughter in a fit of rage after the child wet the bed.
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During the investigation, this was the theory accepted by most of the law enforcement officials — citing the fact that the ransom note was written at the scene of the crime (which is unusual) and that it’s most likely that a parent or caregiver is responsible when this type of crime occurs.
In a recent documentary, John Ramsey opened up about being considered a person of interest, saying, “We absolutely felt like we were the victims of a lynch mob led by the media. There’s no question that the Boulder police department believed we were the killers.”
John Mark Karr, who falsely confessed to the crime. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
The third and perhaps most popular theory is also the most ambiguous. The Boulder District Attorney’s office supported the theory that JonBenét was killed by an intruder, with a broken window in the basement and the gruesome way she was killed (suffocated by a garrote) listed as potential “evidence.”
To this day, however, the alleged intruder/murderer has not been found; in 2006, elementary school teacher John Mark Karr falsely confessed to the pageant star’s murder, but DNA samples provided by him did not match the DNA samples found on the child’s body.
MORE: JonBenét Ramsey Murder —Why the 911 Call May Hold the Crucial Secrets to the Case
Last summer, In Touch revealed that Michael Vail tipped off police about his high school friend Gary Silva — a pedophile with a strong connection to the case — calling him days after the 1996 murder confessing that he “hurt a little girl.”
To this day, who truly killed JonBenét remains unsolved.
For more, check out Casting JonBenét streaming exclusively on Netflix beginning April 28.
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