Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Early JonBenet

Why can't Peter Boyles pronounce Lou Smit's name correctly? It's not "Schmitt." He also says "normenclature" instead of "nomenclature."

Oh, news. The Rocky: Handwriting expert points finger at Karr:
A well-known national handwriting expert said Monday he is 99.9 percent certain John Mark Karr wrote the ransom note found near the scene of JonBenet Ramsey's murder.

"Most guys are riding the fence," said Curt Baggett, the Texas-based co-founder of the School of Forensic Document Examination. "But there are at least a dozen traits that match up perfectly, when comparing a (high school) yearbook signed by Karr and the ransom note."
Of course,

Other experts are less certain than Baggett about the note's origin, and they expect competing testimony should the case ever go to trial . . . .

One person who could find himself on the other side from the Baggetts and Lehew is Honolulu document examiner Reed Hayes, author of a textbook on forensic handwriting analysis.

"I do see a few similarities between the writing in the yearbook and the so-called ransom note, but not enough that I would identify him as the writer. . . ."

Ronald Morris, a Virginia-based expert who spent 23 years as a document examiner with the Secret Service, said everyone is getting ahead of themselves. He said making conclusions without seeing the actual document is "absolute BS."

He said faxes or newspaper reproductions are two-dimensional, and that actual documents are in 3-D - meaning the amount of pressure a person applies to the pen and the actual dimensions of the lettering are critical in forming an opinion.

Boyles also calls the Boulder DA Mary "Cagney and" Lacy. He isn't budging an inch on his belief that the Ramseys did it.

The Boulder Daily Camera: Family: Karr was at '96 Christmas in Ga.":
The father and brothers of John Mark Karr, the man arrested on suspicion of killing JonBenet Ramsey in Colorado the day after Christmas a decade ago, do not recall him ever missing Christmas dinner in Atlanta or traveling to Colorado after the holiday, a lawyer for the family said Monday.

Gary Harris said that the suspect's father, Wexford Karr, found a photograph indicating that his son was part of the family's 1996 Christmas gathering, the day before the child beauty queen was found strangled in her home in Boulder.
The photo "indicated"?
The Christmas Day photograph does not include John Karr but shows his three sons, who, Harris said, never attended the holiday dinner without their parents. Although the photo is undated, the lawyer said the family is certain it was taken in 1996, because an infant pictured in it, Karr's nephew, was 2 weeks old that Christmas.
Throw it into the mix.

Update: Via Boyles, ABC says that when Karr was a baby his mother tried to burn him alive:
The mother of the suspect in JonBenet Ramsey's murder tried to kill him when he was only a baby, a family friend told ABC News.

John Karr's mother, Patricia Elaine Adcock "made a big round donut [of kindling] and put him in the middle of it," said George McCrary, 76, who said he has known Karr's father, Wexford Karr, for 40 years.

"She just boxed the little baby in and tried to light it," McCrary said. John's older brother Michael "came running in just before she got the flame to the flammable material," McCrary added.

Adcock was later committed to a mental institution . . . .
Update (11:05 MDT): Karr waived extradition and will be headed to Boulder, perhaps today. Here's the Post's story.

Update II: The Post also has the home video of John Mark Karr and his mullet.

Update III: I should be listening to Caplis and Silverman, but somehow can't bring myself to turn on the radio.

Update IV: Dan Caplis just called Rita Cosby "the superb MSNBC correspondent." Excuse me while I take the gaspipe. Now he's interviewing her. She says Karr's family has gone through "hundreds" of holiday pictures and are "surprised" and "baffled" not to have found one that includes Karr-- yet.

Update V: Silverman, after recounting the Karr's-mom-tried-to-fry-him story: "That might screw you up."

Update VI: Yurk. ABC has transcripts of Wendy Hutchens' tapes of John Mark Karr (stick an "alleged" in there somewhere): "I've kissed little girls on the mouth . . ."

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