Friday, July 15, 2016

The Mystery of JonBenet Ramsey's Murder

Few unsolved murder cases are as well-known as the one involving this beautiful little girl:

She was killed on Christmas night, only hours from the time this photo was taken of her and her mother:

It all started with a call to 911 from Patsy Ramsey. They had found a ransom note in their daughter's room.

Soon after police arrived, JonBenet's father found her body in the basement. For years, the world was sure the parents had done it.

Years later, it came out that there had been evidence of a break-in. The couple was cleared in 2008, two years after JonBenet's mom died of ovarian cancer.

Some have said the son was guilty, with the parents covering it up. The parents insisted he'd slept through the whole thing, but the 911 recording showed he may have been awake earlier than his mom has always said.

In recent years, more information has come out. There were more than 100 burglaries in the neighborhood in the months preceding the murder. There was a pattern of someone breaking in late at night dressed in black, attempting a sexual assault, and fleeing. One break-in involved an attempted assault on a little girl who danced at the same studio as JonBenet. The intruder knew her name. 

Police were so focused on the parents, they refused to listen.

In recent years, attention has turned to a man named Michael Helgoth, who committed suicide mere hours after a press conference where the district attorney said the suspects would be narrowed down until "soon there will be no one on the list but you." Who is Michael Helgoth?

Helgoth ran a car salvage business and was described to the police as having been "violent and bizarre." They said he enjoyed killing kittens. Police focused the investigation on him for a while, but stopped when he committed suicide.

In late November, he told a friend he was excited about a moneymaking opportunity. The two of them planned to make around $50,000 or $60,000 each. The ransom note demanded $118,000.

After Christmas, his friend said he was depressed...and the money he was expected to earn was nowhere to be found. The friend reported it to the police, but nothing happened.

In recent years, though, detectives have discovered he collected Barbie dolls and got a little too close to a girlfriend's daughter. She took out a restraining order to keep him away.

Among his collection of videos were violent films and a recording of news coverage of the murder of a little girl. They also found a stun gun among photos of his suicide scene. A stun gun was used on JonBenet Ramsey.

The JonBenet Ramsey murder remains a cold case, but it's possible with DNA advancements, the case may be resolved in our lifetime.

What do you think happened to little JonBenet Ramsey?

I'm guest posting on different blogs throughout the month of August to celebrate the release of my new series. Let me know if you want to help out!

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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

A Month of Celebration

Something exciting is coming. On August 9th, my new series releases. So far there are five books in the series, going through the summer of 2017.

On August 9th, the first two books in the series hit the shelves:


Instead of doing a big launch day, I'm hanging out on my friends' blogs all month. Just pick a day and you can either interview me or let me do a guest post on your blog that day while you sit back and sip margaritas.

Or you can just enjoy the entertainment. It's all good!

If you can help, complete the form below. If you host me, I'll promote the post here and on Twitter. Plus, you'll be entered in a drawing to win a free autographed copy of both books.

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Monday, July 11, 2016

My Super-Fun Washington D.C. Vacation

I spent last week in the nation's capitol, watching fireworks and looking at faded documents.

We chose a room with a view of the fireworks, which meant we overlooked the Pentagon (and just about everything else!):

On the 4th, we Ubered our way to the Washington Monument and walked about a billion miles to see everything important.

On Tuesday, we took one of these:

And stopped by to see the Prez.

We visited Ford's Theater...

But first we had some historic breakfast at this cheesy place:

We also visited the Newseum, which was my favorite of all the museums. They had newspapers for each decade going back 500 years.

On the final day of our trip, we drove up to Gettysburg, where we took the tour of the (huge) battlefield:

We stopped by the Jennie Wade House to learn about the only Gettysburg civilian killed in the Battle of Gettysburg. A ghost-hunting steroid head investigated the house on his show. Here's the two-minute story of how Jennie Wade was shot while cooking:

We finished up our trip with a Gettysburg ghost tour. Check out the shadow of Abraham Lincoln at the top left of the picture. (It's not a ghost--just a fun coincidence with the bricks!)

Are you taking a vacation this summer?