What’s worse? Having a loved one murdered or having a loved one missing and not found forever?
We see all these cases about missing people and we often hear their families and friends pleas for anyone to help them find their loved one… and then when the wait becomes longer, we see their hopes go down and it shows in their plea as well. From “help us get her/him back” to “we just want to see her/his body” which drives me thinking… what’s worse?
10. JonBenet Ramsey
Colorado – Patsy (the mother) woke just after 5:00 a.m. and walked down the stairs to the kitchen. On the staircase, she found a two-and-a-half page note that said that JonBenet had been kidnapped by a “small foreign faction” and was being held for a ransom of $118,000. She was to be exchanged for the money the next day. The 911 dispatcher recorded Patsy’s call at 5:25 a.m. The police arrived at the house seven minutes later.
The uniformed police officers that attended were openly suspicious from The Start. The Ramseys, treating the ransom demand seriously, were already taking steps to raise the ransom money. The note said that the kidnappers would call John Ramsey (the father) but no call came. The police, being inexperienced in such an crime in their are made critical mistakes. One of which is failing to seal the home and collected forensic evidence. Family and friends were allowed to come and go as they wish. Later that day, when the police finally decided to search the house for anything suspicious, John found her daughter in the basement dead.
Speculations quickly spread through the community and the media picked up. The police found that the discovery of the “kidnapping victim” in her own home was suspicious. They also said that the ransom note was written by Patsy as an attempt to cover up unintentionally murdering the girl. When the Ramseys decided to hire their own lawyer, everyone became even more suspicious.
The case was to go on unsolved until recently when DNA sampling became much more sophisticated. DNA were found in the clothing of JonBenet and it didn’t match that of the parents’. The police formally apologized to the family. A sex offender confessed to the crime but the police couldn’t match his DNA to what they found on JonBenet’s clothing. The case has gone cold until last year. It was re-opened and new interviews are being conducted.
9. The Zodiac Killings
On the night of Sunday, October 30, 1966, long before anyone was to hear of the Zodiac, an 18-year-old student named Cheri Jo Bates was brutally murdered near the parking lot of Riverside City College’s library annex. Neither rape nor robbery seemed to have been a motive, as her clothes were undisturbed and her purse was present and intact.
Shortly after that, The Zodiac Killer started sending coded letters to the media. It was later decoded and said to contain some clue on who he is. To this day though, no positive identification has been made. Several people claimed to know the Zodiac killer including Arthur Leigh Allen. He was never charged because his prints did not match those left by the killer of taxi cab driver Paul Stine.
In 2007, Jack Tarrance’s stepson, Dennis Kaufman, claimed that his stepfather was the Zodiac. Kaufman turned several items over to the FBI including a hood similar to the one worn by the Zodiac. According to news sources, DNA analysis conducted by the FBI on the items were deemed inconclusive in 2010.
In 2009, Deborah Perez claimed that her father, Guy Ward Hendrickson, was the Zodiac. However, Perez also allegedly previously claimed that she was the illegitimate daughter of John F. Kennedy, so her claim that her father was the Zodiac is no longer considered to be very credible.
8. Jimmy Hoffa
Hoffa disappeared July 30, 1975, declared legally dead by July 30, 1982. Hoffa disappeared at, or sometime after, 2:45 pm on July 30, 1975, from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox Restaurant in Bloomfield Township, a suburb of Detroit. According to what he had told others, he believed he was to meet there with two Mafia leaders—Anthony Giacolone from Detroit, and Anthony Provenzano from Union City, New Jersey and New York City. Provenzano was also a union leader with the Teamsters in New Jersey, and had earlier been quite close to Hoffa. Provenzano was a national vice-president with IBT from 1961, Hoffa’s second term as Teamsters’ president.
Upon Hoffa’s failure to return home from the restaurant by late that evening, his wife called police to report him missing. When police arrived at the restaurant, they found Hoffa’s car, but no sign of Hoffa himself, nor any indication of what had happened to him. Giacolone and Provenzano were each found not to have been in the vicinity of the restaurant that afternoon, and each of them denied that they had scheduled any meeting with Hoffa.
Hoffa was declared legally dead in 1982, on the seventh anniversary of his disappearance.
There are different theories as to where his body is including:
- According to Ralph Picardo, the convict who fingered the conspirators, Hoffa’s body was put in a 55-gallon steel drum and carted away in a Gateway Transportation truck.
- According to another jail bird, Hoffa’s body was taken to New Jersey where it was mixed into the concrete that was used to construct the New York Giant’s football stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
- Hoffa was said to have been buried in a 100-acre gravel pit in Highland, Michigan, which was owned by his brother William.
- Hoffa’s body was encased in the foundation of a public works garage in Cadillac, Michigan.
- His remains were buried at the bottom of a swimming pool behind a mansion in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.
- The corpse was ground up and dumped in a Florida swamp.
Hoffa was crushed in an automobile compactor at Central Sanitation Services in Hamtramck, Michigan.
- His body was buried in a field in Waterford Township, Michigan.
It was weighted down and dumped in Michigan’s Au Sable River.
- Hoffa’s remains were disintegrated at a fat-rendering plant.
- He was buried under the helipad at the Sheraton Savannah Resort Hotel, which at the time of his disappearance was owned by the Teamsters.
- His body was put in a steel drum and buried on the grounds of Brother Moscato’s garbage dump, a toxic waste site in Jersey City, New Jersey.
7. Natalee Holloway
On Thursday, May 26, 2005, Holloway and 124 fellow graduates of Mountain Brook High School, located in a wealthy suburb of Birmingham, Alabama, arrived in Aruba for a five-day, unofficial graduation trip. The graduates were accompanied by seven chaperones but the chaperones were not supposed to keep up with their every move. Police Commissioner Gerold Dompig, who would head the investigation from mid-2005 until 2006, described the behavior of the Mountain Brook students, stating there was “wild partying, a lot of drinking, lots of room switching every night. We know the Holiday Inn told them they weren’t welcome next year. Natalee, we know, she drank all day every day. We have statements she started every morning with cocktails—so much drinking that Natalee didn’t show up for breakfast two mornings”.
Holloway was last seen by her classmates leaving the Aruban bar and night club Carlos’n Charlie’s around 1:30 a.m. on Monday, May 30. Holloway, who had been scheduled to fly home later on May 30, did not appear for her return flight, and her packed luggage and passport were found in her Holiday Inn room. Aruban authorities initiated searches for Holloway throughout the island and surrounding waters but did not find her.
Last year, a skeleton of a female was found in the waters of Aruba but it was later announced that it doesn’t belong to Natalee after DNA testing.
6. The disappearance, and apparent murder of, Judge Crater
Joseph Force Crater was a judge in New York City who disappeared on the night of August 6, 1930. He was last seen leaving a restaurant on 45th Street. He had stated earlier that he was planning to attend a Broadway show. His disappearance became one of the most famous in American history and pop culture, and earned him the title of “The Missingest Man in New York”.
Sources told The Post that the NYPD Cold Case Squad is investigating information provided by Stella Ferrucci-Good of Bellerose, Queens, who died on April 2, leaving behind what may be a key to the mystery. It’s a handwritten letter in an envelope marked “Do not open until my death” that her granddaughter Barbara O’Brien found in a metal box in her grandmother’s home, the sources said. In the letter, Ferrucci-Good claimed that her late husband, Robert Good; an NYPD cop named Charles Burns; and the cop’s cabby brother, Frank Burns, were responsible for Crater’s death.
In fact, remains had been discovered at the location and exhumed – but there the trail again goes cold. Lacking any technology at the time to positively identify the body, it was reinterred in a mass grave on Hart Island, the usual spot where unclaimed deceased persons within the burough were laid to rest in unmarked plots. So, we have no way of knowing at this late date whether the body was indeed that of Judge Crater.
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