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Jan. 9, 1997 - Printable Version

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Jan. 9, 1997 - jameson245 - 01-30-2017

Jan. 09, 1997 - Ramsey Update #13
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jan. 9, 1997
Contact:
Leslie Aaholm/Kelvin McNeill
Media Relations / (303) 441-3090
pager (303) 441-3851 #4060
Ramsey Case New Release Index
Ramsey Case News Release #13
Boulder Police Chief Thomas G. Koby delivered the following message to the Boulder community in a live broadcast on City Municipal Cable Channel 8.
"Two weeks ago today, a violent criminal act took away from this community one of our innocents, JonBenet Ramsey. She did not deserve to be killed, for she had done nothing in her young life to harm anyone.
We are grieving as a community for our loss. I hope to use this forum as a means to aid that process. I hope to provide insight into this event that has been difficult to communicate because of the inherent conflict between the media's desire to provide all of the information they can obtain and the Boulder Police Department's desire to protect the integrity of our investigation.
I have had many members of this community ask me about comments indicating that there is a killer loose in our community. The question this raises: Is there a need for community members to be fearful?
There is no question that there is a person or persons responsible for this act who have not been apprehended. It is my advice now, as it is at any time, that we need to be vigilant with respect to persons who may do harm to us. But this needs to be kept in perspective. In this country for the last two years, 65% of the homicides have been cleared. That means that in 35% of the cases of murder in the United States, the person responsible has not been apprehended. The reality we all live with every day is that we have many dangerous people in this community and communities across the country who are walking the streets.
We all know this intellectually. However, we really never have to deal with it until it strikes close to us. We were not living in fear before this incident, and we cannot be forced to live in fear now.
It is the best judgement of the Boulder Police Department that this is a one-time occurrence. The killing of JonBenet does not appear to be linked to any other similar event. What this means is that we do not believe we have a serial situation to deal with. Should the Boulder community be concerned and vigilant? Yes. Should we be living in fear? No. Can I guarantee that this will not occur again? No.
There have been many stories and much speculation about who killed JonBenet. This is an area that I know will be explored in greater detail in the questions to follow. Let me offer a perspective on this issue. Prejudging and media hype have never solved a crime. Crime solving requires diligent and careful police work and that is exactly what the Boulder Police Department is committed to doing.
It is a natural response to a tragedy like this for the community to want to know immediately who is responsible. It is often an effort to assure ourselves that such a tragedy will never happen to us. The reality of the situation is that often these types of investigations may take time to solve.
The integrity and competence of the men and women of the Boulder Police Department have been challenged. Let me first say that I have never had the privilege of working with more competent, dedicated professionals. They are getting the job done. We will not lose the focus of this investigation to respond to meaningless and unfounded remarks. This organization is well respected in our community. That respect has been earned over many years because of the level of competent service we have provided. Again, it is unfortunate that those who have anointed themselves as experts have seized the opportunity to offer criticism which has no basis in fact.
Let me assure the citizens of Boulder that the men and women of this department are doing everything that can be done to solve this case. All of the resources that my people have needed to do their work have been provided. Our success is very good in Homicide investigations. Over the last five years, 1990-1995, we have had fifteen homicides in Boulder. We have solved thirteen of them. That means we have an 85% rate of success with these investigations.
We are not working on this investigation alone. When we have needed assistance, we have reached out to those who could provide help. Alex Hunter, the District Attorney, has had his personnel working with us from the first hours of this investigation. George Epp, Boulder County Sheriff, has provided us support in the areas of the crime scene search and interviewing of witnesses.
Pat Alstrom, Director of the Colorado Department of Public Safety, has the Colorado Bureau of Investigations processing the evidence we have submitted as quickly and effectively as possible. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Denver and Boulder Offices, has provided us its expertise as we have asked for it.
This violent act has deeply affected the members of the Boulder Police Department. We are fortunate that we work in an environment where we have not built up the hardened shell which you often find in other communities. But that means we still feel for the victims of violent crime. We are vulnerable. Many of us are parents who have felt this loss very deeply. We are doing our own debriefings within the organization to deal with our grief just as community members are participating in debriefings to help themselves cope. The support we have received from the community means a great deal to us. Thank you.
On behalf of the Boulder Police Department, I would like to publicly acknowledge the political leadership of this community. As much publicity as there has been around this incident, it would be very easy for it to have become very political. That has not happened. Mayor Leslie Durgin, our City Council, and City Manager, Tim Honey, have never wavered in their support of this organization. Their steady hand in this matter has enabled us to go forward with this investigation without distraction. Because of their steadfast support, they have enhanced our capacity to solve this case. They have honored their roles as community leaders.
Last, before we get into the questioning: Let me be very clear about the focus of the Boulder Police Department in this matter. Our allegiance is solely to JonBenet Ramsey. We have a mission. We have dedicated ourselves to bringing to justice the person or persons responsible for her death. Everything else is secondary. We will not be deterred.
Closing Comments:
The Boulder Police Department has this investigation well in hand. It is our intention to bring it to resolution through a successful prosecution. Our community is now in the healing process to recover from our loss. If you have not been a part of one of the many debriefings that have been offered during the last two weeks and feel you would like some assistance in dealing with our tragedy, contact the Mental Health Center, Boulder Police Victim Assistance, or your place of worship.
Last, to the members of the Boulder Police Department, continue to provide for the well-being and safety of this community. The citizens of Boulder do not expect you to be perfect. What they appreciate is the effort and concern that you show them. Take care of yourselves both physically and emotionally during this time of great stress. As always, take care of each other. I respect and admire every one of you."