published in the Boulder Daily Camera, 4/29/2000

'Nothing is what it seems' in Ramsey case

by Evan Ravitz

When Ramsey case lead investigators Det. Tom Wickman and Det. Tom Trujillo interviewed myself and Robert McFarland, MD, co-founder of Boulder's Parenting Place for an hour at my home last May 5, Detective Wickman remarked "Nothing is what it seems in this case." Here are several examples that have not received media coverage, yet:

DA Alex Hunter concluded his recent retirement statement by saying, regarding the Ramsey case: "I believe most people feel their district attorney has done right by the law." Mr. Hunter did not say he followed the law, only that people think he did. He did not follow this law:

Colorado Revised Statute 16-5-204 (l) states "Any person may approach the prosecuting attorney or the grand jury and request to testify or retestify in an inquiry before a grand jury or to appear before a grand jury." Dr. McFarland and I, after discovering that Dr. McFarland's mailings to the jury foreman had been intercepted, sent material directly to jury members at their homes on June 28. For thus exercising our right under Colorado law to "approach" our fellow citizens the grand jury, we were threatened with prosecution for Contempt of Court! And ridiculed by editor Hartman of the Boulder Daily Camera.

It was not until September 23rd that I read the above law myself. The Colorado ACLU Intake Director told me on October 8 that they would take our case, although this was too late to be of use, with the grand jury about to disband. Perhaps there will be another. But valuable time has been lost. The Denver Post reported on 3/15/00 that Hunter also tried to keep his own investigator Lou Smit away from the grand jury until Smit sought a court order to enforce the above law!

Our evidence is similar to that which the woman from San Luis Obispo, California and her therapist have been giving Boulder police in recent weeks, featured in a long lead article (by editor Hartman) on February 25, and others since, relating to a pedophile ring having abused and killed JonBenet.

At Hunter's press conference on October 14th, investigative journalist Joe Calhoun (who shares in an Academy award for the documentary The Panama Deception) asked why Dr. McFarland and I had been repeatedly prevented from contacting the grand jury, in spite of the law. Hunter replied that a judge's order (Daniel Hale's) forbade us, which seemed to satisfy the media. Yet, every lawyer knows that even judges and DAs must obey state laws. Why would these leaders of Boulder's justice system deem it so important to keep us from the grand jury that they would repeatedly violate this law?

The substance of our testimony to the police and what we still want investigated is what it seems Hunter most wanted to avoid: the possibility that accused pedophiles in very high places in Boulder -we suggested two names- had both motive and means to de-rail the investigation in the first hours, possibly by calling off the FBI. The motive would be to keep the wide-ranging spotlight of a media case like this away from people like themselves, whether they were involved or not.

Normally, the FBI would immediately assume jurisdiction over an apparent kidnapping by "a small foreign faction" (so read the "ransom note") of the child of a Defense contractor executive. (Lockheed-Martin owned Access Graphics.) Detective Linda Arndt has stated that she asked for the FBI and police backup before she even arrived at the Ramsey home and was told no. This left her unable to control a crime scene filled with suspects and their friends. When she repeated her request she was told everyone was in a meeting. Why would police administration repeatedly refuse to provide backup and FBI assistance in such circumstances?

[The camera edited out this paragraph:] "Tom Wickman made another curious comment to Dr. McFarland and I, and independently to Stephen Singular, author of "Presumed Guilty: An Investigation into the JonBenet Ramsey Case, the Media, and the Culture of Pornography" (on page 217). Tom said that once he was "getting close" to arresting a Boulder City Council member, but had been told to "back off." Since Tom was legally prohibited from giving us any clues about the Ramsey investigation, I feel he was repeatedly drawing an analogy, by way of saying that he'd heard the pedophile-coverup story before and had been told to back off from investigating that."

Hunter made a little Freudian slip under the pressure of the October 14 press conference, in the first 2 minutes. He referred to "grand secrecy," apparently meaning to say "grand jury secrecy." In this case the grand jury didn't have to keep the secrets Dr. McFarland and I had to relate. Hunter and his assistants kept those secrets from the grand jury. They also prevented Cina Wong, Vice-President of the National Board of Document Examiners, from testifying. Why the "grand secrecy," Mr. Hunter?

What makes the case important is not that JonBenet was cute and her parents rich, but what it says about the legal system in our town and beyond. My attorney David Lane calls it the "just us" system. You can read most of our documents and related material at

Evan Ravitz was voted "Best Activist" by readers of the Daily Camera