Detective Steve Thomas has a checkered past concerning this case. He leaked misinformation to the media, promoted his theory and, IMO, derailed the investigation with his actions. But that's a whole other discussion. He led the BORG, was their leader, source of inspiration and hero for a very long time. On Larry King Live, he accused Patsy to her face - and this is his theory.
Just thought this thread should start with his. Certain others will follow.
From Larry King Live:
KING: What do you think happened?
THOMAS: I think there was a toiletting issue that night that has been dismissed and underplayed.
KING: OK, toiletting -- explain.
THOMAS: A bed-wetting or a toiletting issue.
KING: That caused Patsy to get mad at her daughter.
KING: And say slap her, or hit her, or punish her?
THOMAS: I don't know. I'm suggesting that there was an explosive encounter, because at one point put the child in clothes, a red turtleneck, for example, not the same clothing she was found in deceased, the following day. I think something happened in that bathroom.
KING: All right. Why would it lead then to garroting and hitting on the head: What would lead to that?
THOMAS: I don't know. What can you imagine would led to garroting or hitting on the head?
P. RAMSEY: What can you imagine? I can't imagine. I want to you look at me and tell me what you think happened.
THOMAS: Actually, I'll look you right in the eye. I think you're good for this. I think that's what the evidence suggests.
P. RAMSEY: Steve Thomas, you are so...
KING: So in other words, she killed her daughter in a rage over the bed wetting and then garroted her.
"Thomas depo 13 - his theory"
Q. (BY MR. HOFFMAN) Mr. Thomas, I would just like to direct you to page 286 of your book.
Q. All right. Now, this is a rather lengthy series of paragraphs and it runs to 289 and it's basically
from what I can understand your theory of how this crime was committed, who was involved in it; is
Q. And have you had a chance to review pages 286, 87, 88 and 89 since the book was written?
Q. Are these statements still accurate?
A. Well, I don't know the current state of the evidence of what may or may not have changed or
come to be known by Mike Kane and the cops. But at the time I left, this was certainly a hypothesis
that I felt was consistent with the evidence that I felt was certainly reasonable.
Q. Have you had any occasion to change your mind with respect to your analysis and the
conclusions that you draw in these pages?
A. Well, will you give me just a moment to reread quickly these three pages?
MR. HOFFMAN: In fact, would anyone object if he read this out loud into the record?
MR. WOOD: If you want to spend your time having him do that, Darnay, I have no objection
MR. HOFFMAN: Well, yes, would you mind? Let's do it this way. Why don't you silently read this to
yourself and then I'll ask you that question again.
MR. WOOD: He might as well read it out loud because it's on the clock.
Q. (BY MR. HOFFMAN) Okay. Then why don't you read it out loud. Begin with "There was no
doubt in my mind that Patsy wrote the note."
A. "'I believe she committed the murder' I told Smit and proceeded to lay out what I thought had
happened ... "In my hypothesis, and approaching fortieth birthday, the busy holiday season, an
exhausting Christmas Day, and an argument with JonBenet had left Patsy frazzled. Her beautiful
daughter, whom she frequently dressed almost as a twin, had rebelled against wearing the same outfit
as her mother.
"When they came home, John Ramsey helped Burke put together a Christmas toy. JonBenet, who had
not eaten much at the Whites' party, was hungry. Her mother let her have some pineapple, and then
the kids were put to bed. John Ramsey read to his little girl. Then he went to bed. Patsy stayed up to
prepare for the trip to Michigan the next morning, a trip she admittedly did not particularly want to
"Later JonBenet awakened after wetting her bed, as indicated by the plastic sheets, the urine stains, the
pull-up diaper package hanging halfway out of a cabinet, and the balled-up turtleneck found in the
bathroom. I concluded that the little girl had worn the red turtleneck to bed, as her mother originally
said, and that it was stripped off when it got wet.
"As I told Smit, I never believed the child was sexually abused for the gratification of the offender but
that the vaginal trauma was some sort of corporal punishment. The dark fibers found in her pubic
region could have come from the violent wiping of a wet child. Patsy probably yanked out the diaper
package in cleaning up JonBenet.
"Patsy would not be the first mother to lose control in such a situation. One of the doctors we consulted
cited toileting issues as a textbook example of causing a parental rage. So, in my hypothesis, there was
some sort of explosive encounter in the child's bathroom sometime prior to one o'clock in the morning,
the time suggested by the digestion rate of the pineapple found in the child's stomach. I believed
JonBenet was slammed against a hard surface, such as the edge of a tub, inflicting a mortal head
wound. She was unconscious, but her heart was still beating. Patsy would not have known that
JonBenet was still alive, because the child already appeared to be dead. The massive head trauma
would have eventually killed her.
"It was the critical moment in which she either had to call for help or find an alternative explanation for
her daughter's death. It was accidental in the sense that the situation had developed without motive or
premeditation. She could have called for help but chose not to. An emergency room doctor probably
would have questioned the 'accident' and called the police. Still, little would have happened to Patsy in
Boulder. But I believe panic overtook her.
"John and Burke continued to sleep while Patsy moved the body of JonBenet down to the basement
and hid her in the little room.
"As I pictured the scene, her dilemma was that the police would assume the obvious if a six- year old
child was found dead in a private home without any satisfactory explanation. Patsy needed a diversion
and planned the way she thought a kidnapping should look.
"She returned upstairs to the kitchen and grabbed her tablet and a felt-tipped pen," and flipping "to the
middle of the tablet, and started a ransom note, drafting one that ended on page 25. For some reason
she discarded that one and ripped pages 17-25 from the tablet. Police never found those pages.
"On page 26, she began the 'Mr. and Mrs. I,' then also abandoned that false start. At some point she
drafted the long ransom note. By doing so, she created the government's best piece of evidence.
"She then faced the major problem of what to do with the body. Leaving the house carried the risk of
John or Burke awakening at the sounds and possibly being seen by a passerby or a neighbor. Leaving
the body in the distant, almost inaccessible, basement room was the best option.
"As I envisioned it, Patsy returned to the basement, a woman caught up in panic, where she could have
seen--perhaps by detecting a faint heartbeat or a sound or a slight movement--that although completely
unconscious, JonBenet was not dead. Others might argue that Patsy did not know the child was still
alive. In my hypothesis, she took the next step, looking for the closest available items in ... desperation.
Only feet away was her paint tote. She grabbed a paint brush and broke it to fashion the garrote with
some cord." She then -- "then she looped the cord around the girl's neck.
"In my scenario, she choked JonBenet from behind, with a grip on her broken paintbrush handle, pulling
the ligature. JonBenet, still unconscious, would never have felt it. There are only four ways to die:
suicide, natural, accidental, or homicide. This accident, in my opinion, had just become a murder.
"Then the staging continued to make it look like a kidnapping. Patsy tied the girl's wrists in front, not in"
the "back, for otherwise the arms would not have been in" the "overhead position. But with a
fifteen-inch length of cord between the wrists and the knot tied loosely over the clothing, there was no
way such a binding would have restrained a live child. It was a symbolic act to make it appear the child
had been bound.
"Patsy took considerable time with her daughter, wrapping her carefully in the blanket and leaving her
with a favorite pink nightgown." As "the FBI had told us ... a stranger would not have taken such
"As I told Lou, I thought that throughout the coming hours, Patsy worked on her staging, such as
placing the ransom note where she would be sure to 'find' it the next morning. She placed the tablet on
the countertop right beside the stairs and" put "the pen in the cup.
"While going through the drawers" and "under the countertop" -- "While going through the drawers
under the countertop where the tablet had been, she found rolls of tape. She placed a strip from a roll of
duct tape across JonBenet's mouth. There was bloody mucous under the tape, and a perfect set of the
child's lip prints, which did not indicate a tongue impression or resistance. "I theorized that Patsy, trying
to cover her tracks, took the remaining cord, tape, and the first ransom note out of the house that night,
perhaps dropping them into a nearby storm sewer or among the Christmas debris in wrappings in a
neighbor's trash can.
"She was running out of time. The household was scheduled to wake up early to fly to Michigan, and in
her haste, Patsy Ramsey did not change clothes, a vital mistake. With the clock ticking, and hearing
her husband moving around upstairs, she stepped over the edge.
"The way I envisioned it, Patsy screamed, and John Ramsey, coming out of the shower, responded,
totally unaware of what had occurred. Burke, awakened by the noise shortly before six o'clock in the
morning, came down to find out what had happened and was sent back to bed as his mother talked to
the 911 emergency dispatcher.
"Patsy Ramsey opened the door to Officer Rick French at about 5:55 a.m. on the morning of
December 26, 1996, wearing a red turtleneck sweater and black pants, the same things she had worn to
a party the night before. Her hair was done, and her makeup was on. In my opinion, she had never
been to bed.
"The diversion worked for seven hours as the Boulder police thought they were dealing with a
"John Ramsey, in my hypothetical scenario, probably first grew suspicious while reading the ransom
note that morning, which was why he was unusually quiet. He must have seen his wife's writing
mannerisms all over it, everything but her signature. But where was his daughter?
"He said in his police interview that he went down to the basement when Detective Arndt noticed him
missing. I suggested that Ramsey found JonBenet at that time and was faced with the dilemma of his
life. During the next few hours, his behavior changed markedly as he desperately considered his few
options--submit to the authorities or try to control the situation. He had already lost one child, Beth, and
now JonBenet was gone too. Now Patsy was possibly in jeopardy.
"The stress increased steadily during the morning, for Patsy, in my theory, knew that no kidnapper was
going to call by ten o'clock, and after John found the body, he knew that too. So when Detective Linda
Arndt told him to search the house, he used the opportunity and made a beeline for the basement.
"Then tormented as he might be, he chose to protect his wife. Within a few hours, the first of his many
lawyers was in motion, the private investigators a day later.
"That's the way I see it, I said to Lou Smit." That's how evidence -- "That's how the evidence fits to
me. She made mistakes, and that's how we solve crimes, right? I reminded him of his own favorite
saying: 'Murders are usually what they seem.'".
Q. All right. Thank you, Mr. Thomas. Now, I want to ask you, do you still agree with this analysis
of the murder of JonBenet Ramsey?
MR. WOOD: Are you asking him as to the state of the evidence in August of 1998?
MR. HOFFMAN: No, I'm asking him whether now he still agrees based on his own personal
knowledge of the case whether or not he still stands by these statements.
MR. WOOD: I want to make sure that we understand, Darnay, because he, as I understood it,
testified that short of media reports and public statements he doesn't know anything about the state of
the evidence from August of 1998 through September of 2001. And I think in fairness, we ought to
make sure that we are asking him what he is standing by.
MR. HOFFMAN: All right.
Q. (BY MR. HOFFMAN) Do you regard the statements that you make on page 286, 287, 288, 289
as being true to the best of your knowledge?
MR. WOOD: We've got a conference again.
THE DEPONENT: Just a second, Darnay.
MR. HOFFMAN: Yeah, um-hum.
(Discussion off the record between the deponent and Mr. Diamond.)
A. I'm sorry, Mr. Hoffman. Yeah, as I said, given what I knew when I resigned in the summer of
'98, I don't know the status of the evidence now but this was a hypothetical scenario that I purported
that I felt was consistent with the evidence at the time. And unless something is changed drastically or
markedly, that I'm unaware of, yeah, it's still my belief that something -- or let me state it this way: It's
still my belief -- or I still stand behind this hypothetical scenario in that regard.
Q. Are you aware of any information relating to Patsy Ramsey, Mr. Thomas, that you consider to be
incriminating with respect to the death of her daughter that is not included in your hardback or
A. In a circumstantial case such as this there are arguments that could be made that there is a lot of
other information contained within the files of the Boulder Police Department that didn't fit into -- in this
Q. Thank you. But I want to know as you sit here today whether you are prepared to give me the
benefit of any information related to Patsy Ramsey that you, Steve Thomas, consider to be
incriminating with respect to the death of her daughter that is not included in either your hardback or
MR. DIAMOND: Can you do that without reviewing --
A. Yeah, without reviewing --
MR. WOOD: Excuse me. Can I get him to answer without you suggesting the answer which would
be totally inappropriate and I don't think appreciated under the Federal Rules or by the judge. Please
answer the question for me without being coached by Mr. Diamond.
MR. DIAMOND: Mr. Thomas doesn't need to be coached by me, sir.
MR. WOOD: Well, apparently then you need to understand that, don't coach him. Coach him during
lunch, do it in the last two days you had him.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) Answer my question, sir. Is there any other information that as you sit here
today know that you consider incriminating about Patsy Ramsey in terms of her being involved in the
death of her daughter that you didn't include in your book?
A. To answer that big question, I would have to review my reports and the case file to determine
definitively if there are items that were learned during the course of the investigation that I didn't put in
Q. So you would be able to do that if you can come up with this box of materials when you go to
look for it and you find it, right?
A. Or if you can allow me inside the Boulder Police Department, I'll do that for you.
Q. I think -- while I might have a better chance of getting the key to the department than you might,
I don't think either one of us is going to get that short of a court order but I'll certainly try and if you
would like to try maybe we can both together do it; is that a deal?
A. Deal, Mr. Wood.
Q. Okay. We'll go in combined and ask Beckner to open the door. I would love to see it and I know
you would, too. I'm going to try and go through and ask you if you would to take a look at your book --
well, before I do that, let me ask you a couple of other things.
Q. All right. In your description of how JonBenet Ramsey died, you have made it clear both in your
book and in your national television appearances that John Ramsey was not involved, right?
A. It's my belief that John Ramsey was not involved in this crime, you're right.
Q. Right. And that it was sometime, as I understand your description of the events, the next morning
when he was studying the ransom note that he became suspicious and perhaps concluded, you say,
that his wife was involved, right?
A. That's what I purport in my hypothesis.
Q. What did John Ramsey tell you about who went to bed first on the evening of December 25,
A. It's a big transcript. I would have to review it.
Q. You don't know that?
A. Who went to bed first?
A. In the Ramsey family?
Q. Yeah, between John and Patsy.
A. I would have to review my report or I would have to review the transcript of that Q and A.
Q. How about do you know as you sit here today who got up first that morning?
MR. DIAMOND: According to John Ramsey?
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) What the Boulder Police Department concluded. In your -- let me tell you in
your description of how JonBenet Ramsey was killed, what was your position about whether Patsy
Ramsey was in bed or out of bed that morning when John Ramsey got up?
A. Well, without reviewing multiple transcripts and reports, I don't recall the......... the Ramseys
made several inconsistent statements --
Q. About who got up first?
A. If I could finish my answer.
Q. Well, if you could stay on track, it would be helpful.
MR. DIAMOND: Finish your answer.
MR. WOOD: Please make it responsive to my question about the issue about who got out of bed first
MR. DIAMOND: If you find his answer to be non responsive, your remedy, I believe, under the
Federal Rules is to move to strike it and I believe that --
MR. WOOD: I appreciate you informing me of the Federal Rules. Now I know that you do know that
some of things you're doing is not in accordance with the Federal Rules in terms of your statements on
MR. DIAMOND: I'm only trying to do you a favor.
MR. WOOD: Thank you. I don't need your favors, but I appreciate them anyway.
MR. DIAMOND: Is the question withdrawn or can he finish his answer?
MR. WOOD: I want to go back and make sure we're on task by restating it. So I'll withdraw it and
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) I'm asking you, Mr. Thomas, what was your position in your description of
this child's murder as to whether Patsy Ramsey was in bed or out of bed when John Ramsey woke the
morning of December 26, 1996?
A. From John Ramsey's account?
Q. I'm asking you, sir, what was your position in your description of this child's murder as to
whether Patsy Ramsey was in bed or out of bed when John Ramsey woke the morning of December
A. I believe I write in my hypothesis that she was out of bed.
Q. She would have to be, wouldn't she? If you believe that John Ramsey, as you say you do, is not
in any way involved, you would have to believe a couple of things, that she had not gone to bed when
John went to bed, and that when John woke up, she was already -- she was not in bed. And you
would have to believe one other thing, wouldn't you, detective, former detective, that John Ramsey
didn't hear the scream at midnight, right?
A. You have a series of five phrases and questions --
Q. Let me break them down one at a time. Listen carefully to me. Under your position of the
description of this child's murder, John Ramsey did not hear the screams described by Melody
A. He never indicated, as far as I know, that he heard the scream of a child.
Q. If he was as you say he was, totally uninvolved in the murder of his daughter, he didn't hear the
scream, did he, because if he had heard the scream, you would have expected that he would have
reacted to it or been certainly willing to tell you about it?
MR. DIAMOND: Objection. Argumentative. You may answer.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) If he's innocent as you say he is?
MR. DIAMOND: Objection. Argumentative. You may answer.
A. One could speculate that he would have heard a scream from within the house.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) You will concede that in fact Melody Stanton may be right that the scream
occurred and that John Ramsey did not hear it, you would concede that as a possibility supported by
your description of the events, right?
A. It is a possibility, yes.
Q. And it is more consistent with your statements about John Ramsey's uninvolvement than it would
be consistent with the idea that he was involved; can we agree on that?
A. I don't understand your question.
MR. DIAMOND: I don't either.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) Do you understand it, just so we make sure?
MR. RAWLS: Got it, I'm on it.
MR. WOOD: Thank you. I kind of figured that nobody on that side of the table would understand it
but everybody on this side would.
MR. DIAMOND: Can we ask Sean?
MR. SMITH: I think Sean has already taken his position that he doesn't understand any of my
questions. I've dealt with him too long. He's never going to acknowledge that any of them are
Q. When you, sir, with all due respect when you're sitting down to write a book to state your, as you
call it, hypothesis that Patsy Ramsey murdered her daughter, I'm just operating under the assumption
that you would have thoroughly familiarized yourself with the investigation before committing that type
of a statement to word for profit. Is my assumption wrong?
MR. DIAMOND: This deposition is not about the authorship of his book.
MR. WOOD: No, it's about his knowledge of the investigation, sir.
MR. DIAMOND: You can ask him questions about that.
MR. WOOD: I just did.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) Is my assumption wrong?
MR. DIAMOND: I direct you not to answer the pending question. The next question.
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) Did you or did you not prior to April of 2000 familiarize yourself fully with
the significant findings of the investigation of John Ramsey and Patsy Ramsey in connection with the
death of JonBenet, yes or no?
A. I tried to.
Q. Did you feel confident that you had in fact that familiarity?
A. Was I familiar with the case? Yes, absolutely.
Interesting the lawyer wouldn't let Thomas answer that question. Very interesting.
Q. Page 286, you make reference to a red turtleneck being stripped off of JonBenet when it got wet
from I guess her bed wetting.
MR. DIAMOND: Where are you?
Q. (BY MR. WOOD) Third paragraph down "I concluded the little girl had worn the red turtleneck
to bed, as her mother originally said, and that it was stripped off when it got wet." Are you talking
about wet from urine?
A. In this hypothesis we're talking about, yes.
Q. Did you ever have or the Boulder Police Department to your knowledge ever have the red
turtleneck found in the bathroom tested forensically to determine if it had any type of trace evidence or
other evidence on it?
A. Again, it sounds like you know otherwise but I was under the impression from Trujillo that there
wasn't a presumptive test for urine.
Q. Did anybody tell you that they found the red turtleneck and that it was wet?
A. No, this is what I am surmising in the hypothesis.
Q. Was the red turtleneck taken into evidence?
A. I certainly believe it was.
Q. Did it have any type of urine stain on it?
A. Not that I'm aware of. I never have looked at it personally.
Q. Where did you get the statement that it got wet; did you just manufacture that out of whole cloth?
A. No, I'm suggesting that that was a reasonable explanation for the final resting place of this red
turtleneck of which she may have indeed worn home.
Q. But you had no evidence to support that statement about the turtleneck being wet, true?
A. No, I don't know that it was urine stained.
Q. Or wet?
A. Or wet.
Q. I forgot to ask you how many lectures have you given consistent with this web page?
A. Very few, maybe three or four.
Q. Do you have any lined up in the future?
A. I do.
Q. Could you try and tell me where the three or four were, just the names of the cities?
A. Indianapolis, New Orleans, Snowmass, Colorado.
Q. And what is coming up?
A. Ohio. And I think there is one after the first of the year. Ohio might be after the first of the
year. Minnesota later this year.
Q. Dr. Wecht says, Steve Thomas knows so much about the murder of JonBenet Ramsey he
doesn't mince words. Do you believe that's an accurate description of you?
A. That's Dr. Wecht's description of me.
Q. I'm asking you if you think it's accurate, that you don't mince words?
A. It depends on the context.
Q. You do acknowledge having said that the idea of Patsy Ramsey going downstairs and putting a
garrote around JonBenet's neck is a hard leap to make, your words on --
A. Yes, a lot of people, as I said, myself included, but maybe in a naive way but after learning what
the FBI taught us about child homicide, as I said, they've seen children destroyed and killed in the most
grotesque and worst manners imaginable.
Now he says it was all hypothesis and hypothetical musings - but when he wrote his book he knew readers would believe he had inside knowledge and was letting them know that, without a doubt, Patsy did this.