JonBenét's brother from John's first marriage - - McLean interview
I was very young when Dad met Patsy and I don't remember much about the first years. I know I was comfortable in both homes and, although I knew Patsy wasn't my mom, she had that role when I was with her and my dad. She encouraged us in our activities but never pushed us into anything. She was interested in all that I did , whether it was Boy Scouts, sports or school activities. I have good memories of growing up. It's not just the vacations and special times, but it's the general everyday things that made a loving and caring family relationship.
I am 10 years older than Burke, but we can still enjoy Play Station together! I was 14 years older than JonBenet and I loved her very much.... we made lemonade together. I know it is accurate to call them "half" brother and sister, but none of us has ever felt we have half a relationship. Burke and JonBenet are my brother and sister. They've never called me "half" brother, they call be "big" brother.
And I resent having to even talk about Dad and Patsy like this I don't see a need to defend our family. Why do we keep having to say we are a normal family? The outlandish, false things that are said are just what the media has made up about us. There is nothing previously in our lives to indicate that we are anything but a loving family yet we have to keep defending ourselves. Dad and Patsy are great parents. What else can I say?
JAR - 22 years
"Perfect Murder, Perfect Town, JonBenet and the City of Boulder"
Written by Lawrence Schiller and Charlie Brennan - 1999
PMPT Page 66 (paperback)
"Meanwhile, Melinda Ramsey, John's twenty-five-year-old daughter from his first marriage, arrived at the Justice Center. She had been called for a formal interview about her movements over the last few days. An hour later, her brother would be interviewed at the same place.
The Ramseys' attorneys and the police had agreed on this location as neutral territory. The police would have preferred to see them at headquarters, but since John Andrew and Melinda were cooperating without independent counsel, the detectives accepted the Justice Center as a reasonable compromise.
Detective Kim Stewart interviewed Melinda for almost two and a half hours. Detectives Ron Gosage and Steve Thomas questioned her brother from 6:00 to 8:00 P.M.
Twenty-year-old John Andrew was obviously upset, but he was composed enough to explain that he was a student at CU and had been in Boulder until December19. Then he had gone to Atlanta to spend the first part of his vacation with his mother, Lucinda Johnson, and his sister and friends. Then the plan was to continue his vacation with his sister, father, stepmother, and their children. He said his father had arranged to meet him and his sister in Minneapolis at about 10:30 A.M. on December 26, and from there they would all continue to the house in Charlevoix, Michigan.
In the months that followed, the police would confirm that John Andrew, his mother, and her friend Harry Smiles had attended the Peachtree Presbyterian Church in Atlanta on Christmas Eve and that John Andrew had returned to his mother's home at 1:00 A.M.
Melinda, who worked at a hospital in Marietta, Georgia, finished her shift at about 7:00 A.M. on Christmas Day. That afternoon, John Andrew, Harry Smiles, Melinda, and her boyfriend, Stewart Long, exchanged gifts at Lucinda's home in Marietta. In the afternoon they all went across the street to a neighbor's for dinner.
Melinda and Stewart Long left the dinner party about 7:00 P.M., and Melinda started to pack for an early flight the next day. At 9:00 they went to visit Guy Long, Stewart's uncle, and after visiting other friends were home by midnight. At about 8:30 P.M., John Andrew went to his friend Brad Millard's home in Marietta to play video games. After an hour, they left to catch a 10:30 show at the Town and Country Movie Theaters in Marietta with another friend, Chris Stanley.
John Andrew said that after the movie he went back to Brad Millard's house to get his car and arrived back at his mother's house at 1:00 A.M. The next morning he left his mother's house with Melinda, who had come there to pick him up. Together they boarded a flight to Minneapolis at 8:36 A.M. local time. That was forty-four minutes after Patsy called 911 to report that JonBenet was missing."
PMPT Page 301
"Two and a half months after the Boulder police began investigating John Andrew and Melinda Ramsey, they received the final pieces of evidence that cleared Ramsey's older children of any involvement in JonBenet's murder.
Bryan Morgan wrote to Detective Thomas on March 4 stating that John Andrew had made an ATM transaction at the QT Store on Roswell Road, in Marietta, Georgia, at 9:00 P.M. on December 25. His friend Brad Millard had been present. To support his claim, Morgan enclosed the ATM transaction slip. He also repeated that Melinda had awakened her brother in the early morning hours of December 26, in time for him to stop at a store and still make an 8:30 A.M. flight to Minneapolis. It was impossible for John Andrew to have flown from Atlanta to Boulder, whether by commercial or private aircraft, commit the murder, and return in time to be awakened by his sister in the presence of Brad Millard, who had stayed overnight in John Andrew's room.
Morgan also wrote that John Andrew hadn't been in Charlevoix, Michigan, on either the Memorial Day or the July Fourth 1996 week. The accusation of a onetime police informant that John Andrew had tried to stage an "accidental death" in order to kill JonBenet was clearly preposterous. Morgan again requested an official announcement that John Andrew was no longer a possible suspect.
By now the police had received the test results from John Andrew and Melinda's hair, blood, and handwriting. At the time, the only possible match to evidence found at the crime scene was the pubic hair found on the white blanket in the basement, which held some slight similarities to Melinda's. But her alibi was even tighter than her brother's, and it was not likely that she had used the same blanket when she stayed with the family. The next day the police informed the DA's office that they would make a public statement regarding Ramsey's older children within the week."
“JonBenet, Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation”
by Steve Thomas and Don Davis - 2000
"The Ramseys were among dozens of people who would give handwriting exemplars in the case. To keep the comparisons accurate, we had them all write a mock business document, called the London Letter, which incorporates a variety of characters and punctuation. They also, wrote a series of words from the ransom note- Mr. Ramsey, John, withdraw, family, attache, daughter, S.B.T.C., your, delivery, 100%, killing, instructions, countermeasures, $118,000, difficult, authorities, and bank.
While Arndt handled the writing samples, the elder kids of John Ramsey from his first marriage were made available for interviews and evidence samples.
Melinda Ramsey, twenty-two, wore a white pullover and jeans, and her eyes were puffy from weeping. She was attractive and polite when a detective and a sheriff's investigator began questioning her, but by the time the interview was done she was left with her head buried in her arms, crying. They had pressed her hard about the possibility of inappropriate sexual behavior in the family. Melinda vehemently denied that, and in fact revealed nothing of significance, since she was in Atlanta at the time of the murder. She had been caught in a web not of her own making, and the interview left her with a bad taste about dealing with police.
Gosage and I interviewed twenty-year-old John Andrew Ramsey. He was a lanky young man with dark eyes and short dark hair, who wore a checkered shirt, a winter jacket, and an attitude. When the blood tech moved close with her needle, the former Eagle Scout, who was now a third-semester sophomore at the University of Colorado, whispered, "I may pass out."
Although he also claimed to have been in Atlanta when the crime occurred, we had to check him out because of the neighbor who had reported seeing him on Christmas Day. We had to determine who was right.
We asked him to put his thoughts on paper, and he wrote a document that brimmed with feelings about his little stepsister being murdered, giving us a glimpse into his world. He caught our attention immediately by writing, "I think it was someone that had intimate knowledge of my family and how we lived day to day. Why would they leave the ransom note on the back staircase instead of the front?" Good question, I thought. How would a stranger know which stairway Patsy Ramsey would come down that morning?
He ridiculed the idea of a small foreign faction being involved, was certain the crime had nothing to do with his father's company, and questioned why a ransom note was left at all. "Why did they ask for $118,000? I could pay that amount," he wrote. Someone was envious of their wealth and thought of the Ramseys as "rich bastards," he said.
John Andrew told us that whoever did this was probably uneducated, were amateurs at kidnapping, and had seen the movie Ransom, in which the family of Mel Gibson's character was a "spitting image" of his own. He did not believe anyone came in through the broken basement window. They had a key, he surmised.
In one comment, he described his stepmother as "flashy" and guessed that the killer might be someone close to her.
John Andrew also buttressed the comments of the housekeeper's husband, Mervin Pugh, and former nanny Suzanne Savage about the house being difficult to navigate. "You don't know your way around real easy right off the bat. . . . You have to open lots of doors. It has lots of ups and downs," and the basement entrance was hard to find. It was becoming very clear to the police just how difficult it would have been for any stranger to get to that distant basement storage room."
Posted by jameson on Jul-19-01 at 02:03 PM (EST)
Quotes from an email from John Andrew - - posted with expressed permission.
M=Melinda, S=Stewart, J=John, P=Patsy
The topic being discussed was John telling Stewart that he found the body at 11.
"After M, S and I arrived in Denver we proceded to the house. As soon as we arrived J and P were in the street, they had just found JB. It was a bad scene. Very quickly S and I got in John Fernies van with my dad. Melinda went with Patsy in I think Fleets car. NO ONE WAS THINKING. We just got in the nearest car and drove. NO THOUGHTS. That is when my dad told us he found JB and she was dead. NO THOUGHTS. We prayed and drove to the Fernies. I would imagine that is when Stewart got his information, I was probably sitting right there but I don't remember.
"...my parents were destroyed. They were not thinking about their own butt, or covering up any crimes. They were just not plainly thinking straight. No one was, or could think."
"I will never be able to explain the feelings and thoughts of that day. From the moment of the phone call with my dad until we arrived in Denver was maddening. We had to get on a plane, that was first. I was constantly scanning the crowd, for what I have no idea. By the time we were on the plane I had come to the realization that JB was dead. A couple of weeks earlier I had watched a Geraldo show about kidnappings, they had the parents on, none of the kids had survived. I knew the chances were not good, I just prayed that she was not in any pain. I don't think you would call it an out of body experience b/c lots of my senses were heightened. I was scared, angry and nervous. However, other functions shut down. I was not rational, I was not thinking ahead, I was not thinking at all. It is survival instincts at their best. Survive in the moment and not worry about the future."
"My point is this. To build a case around the hours following the crime are ridiculous. Behavior can not be accounted for during these times. It would seem much more logical to seek answers in the other fifty plus years of ones life, rather than the moments of one's darkest period."
"I can't answer for Stewart, I can't answer for my Dad. I can only provide some insight to the psyche during such a period of high stress."