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Trolloc
Username: Trolloc

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 6:42 pm:   

Hello,

Im new to the boards, and frankly Im overwhelmed by the indepth knowledge that most of you seem to possess.

My goal is to try and catch up to the ongoing discussions many of you are carrying on, and I think the easiest way for me to achieve that is start this like an investigation.

So, the first place I want to start is suspects. That being said, who is your primary suspect and why?

I know that DNA evidence alone would clear LAA, which would be the person I have read the most about (thanks to Greysmith) but I felt that many of the other suspects seemed just as intriguing if not more so. I need your help in steering my research in a better direction.

Thanks you in advance.

Dave
Trolloc
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Yarbchris
Username: Yarbchris

Registered: 9-2006
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 7:15 pm:   

Good topic. I don't have a favorite suspect myself. There are many good suspects that can be ruled in and out on a dime. That being said, most of those here who do have favorite suspects have very good reasons for their choosing and provide fascinating facts and logic. I think we should keep an open mind and not discount evidence based on our preconceptions. I have formed my own partial profile of the Zodiac, but I still haven't completely ruled out suspects who may not fit it, like Ted K and ALA.

In lieu of starting out with a favorite suspect, I recommend you examine all of the info (Tom has gathered tons of stuff here) and reach your own conclusions. As far as Graysmith, take "just the facts" and use extreme caution with the rest. In fact, you should even use caution with "the facts."

I think absorbing the facts presented and "listening" to everyone's take on the case --even if I happen to disagree-- is the best way to reach a conclusion. I just hope the the true suspect is found in my lifetime.

I look forward to hearing your opinions!
Chris
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Tommyt
Username: Tommyt

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Thursday, January 04, 2007 - 8:44 pm:   

For a long time, Marshall was my favorite suspect given the facial characterstics, handwritting, association with military, hamm radio, SF Riverside connections and so on. But there is just not enough about him. For me, ALA, TK, Kane were a pretty close 2nd, but over time, I began to feel that it is somebody that has never been touched upon. For a long time; however, I become frustrated and don't want to hear anything about the top suspects until somebody develops the "Smoking Gun" so-to-speak.
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Douglas_oswell
Username: Douglas_oswell

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 12:49 am:   

I think it's pretty well known that Kaczynski is my favorite suspect, and he's grown even more so as my research has progressed. Here's a brief rundown of why he's my favorite:

Both Kaczynski and the Zodiac were known killers, with a common criminal signature that can be broken down into two elements: (1) symbolic revenge against a class of victims whose possessions or attributes they envied, and (2) the need for widespread publicity. Each was driven by sexual frustration, which in Kaczynski's case proved so extreme that he sought relief through sexual mutilation. Each forwarded taunting and threatening letters to the media; in some cases the same media, demanding publication on pain of further killings. Each placed anonymous telephone calls to police agencies in association with a murder. Each created a self-styled moniker and used it in "trademark" fashion. Each left an outdoor graffiti accompanied by an arcane symbol consisting of lines within a circle. Each killer, once his credibility had been established, mailed a letter to the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle that threatened mass murder on a large scale, then retracted the threat later as a sort of joke. Their physical descriptions contain a number of similarities, particularly their heavy facial structure and large, prominent chin; in subjective terms Kaczynski actually resembles the PH composites to a remarkable degree. Both used disguises in the commission of their crimes and showed an understanding of bomb-making, using particularly sophisticated electronic components derived from easily-obtainable elements. Both employed elaborate cryptosystems of their own design. Both display a mathematical mindset. Both used high literary allusion as a means of teasing the authorities, and used a particular, arcane, literary genre in those allusions. Both employed allusions to wood, trees and mountains in their correspondences. Both killers' writings contain numerous similarities in tone and style; in some instances mirroring one another. Both display similarities in handwriting that are so close that one might easily be disguised to form the other, with a minimum of effort. Last, there are four sets of meta-codes within the Zodiac ciphers that point directly to Kaczynski, particularly (1) his name and occupation in the Three-Part Cipher; (2) a clear allusion to the plot of Conrad's The Secret Agent in the Mt. Diablo letter; (3) a geographical reference to Montana in the Mt. Diablo Code, and (4) Kaczynski's name easily extracted from the 13-Symbol Cipher using a simple paradigm of set theory.

Apart from those things, he's not really very interesting as a suspect.
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Sanfranguns
Username: Sanfranguns

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 8:53 am:   

I personally think none of the suspects listed on this website are zodiac. I have no idea who is though
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Socal
Username: Socal

Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 11:15 am:   

I had a suspect in 1970. I lived in NoCal at the time and was 17 years old.

I won't mention his name, but I took my info to SFPD by phone and they had me meet with a person at a resteraunt and he said that he was the go between for Dectective Toschi. He was very interested in my info.

He set up an interview between Toschi, myself, and my dad. We had 3 total meetings over a 3 (approx) month period.

They were very interested my "my guy" for a while, but ruled him out after handwriting samples.

I also have a suspect right now, but a real long shot. I won't divulge that name either.

In a nutshell, I don't really care if "my" suspect is arrested, I just want them to find and bring to justice..."The Zodiac".
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Ubpclaw
Username: Ubpclaw

Registered: 7-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 12:54 pm:   

I personally lean in the direction of Bruce Davis. Ive always felt the Red Phantom letter is believe to be authentic then that is the letter we should be making handwriting comparisons to because he is obviously not trying to mask his writing style in some manner, and Davis' writing to me looks to match the writing in the Phantom letter

Phantom Letter:
http://www.zodiackiller.com/RedPhantomLetter.html

Bruce Davis Writing Sample:
http://www.zodiackiller.com/DavisWriting.html

Also, Nancy Slover who was the 911 operator who talked to Zodiac said Davis' voice was the closest match shes heard.

http://www.zodiackiller.com/discus/messages/19/364 .html?1157294438
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Davidmm
Username: Davidmm

Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 2:27 pm:   

Socal, without dropping-the-dime on someone by name, I'd love to hear what led you to suspect this guy in 1970!

I had a similar experience over a decade ago. I live in the SF Bay Area, and actually work in the Presidio. I'd also read Graysmith's book, so I was quite familiar with the case. I met a local individual who was more than a little freaky. From things he'd said, it was enough to convince me to stay away from him on general purposes.

I discussed it with several people to see if I just had an overactive imagination. I showed them a photo, and a handwriting sample. They insisted I go to the police. Their response was that everything fit too perfectly, and that the guy must have been getting his jollies by trying to freak people out. I felt kind stupid for bothering them.

Several months later, the local paper had an article about on-going mysterious deaths and killings of pets in a particular neighborhood, and how it'd been happening, unexplained, for years. My "suspect" lived pretty much in the middle of that neighborhood. I know that Z didn't threaten to kill "kitties", but it's an interesting zincronicity.
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Ed_neil
Username: Ed_neil

Registered: 5-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 3:00 pm:   

Rader apparently got his rocks off by killing dogs as a substitute for humans. Hundreds of dog collars were found in his shed IIRC, and being a dogcatcher, well, that obviously put him in a position to get his hands on plenty of dogs... so, who knows about Z and your suspect?
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Socal
Username: Socal

Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 3:01 pm:   

Sure Davidmm, no problem.

I had followed the case from the start in the Chronicle. Other than sports, music, and girls, this story became my focus. I read everything. So at an early age, I knew most details of the case.

My brother was not aware of the case. He was in the Navy (7 years older than me), and we got into a phone conversation about my interests. I went into great detail for him.

He called me the next 2-3 months asking for more info, which I gladly relayed to my big bro. I finally asked him why he seemed so interested.

He went on to tell me about a guy he worked with in the Navy that had a desk right next to him. The guy fit pretty much every description and M.O. of "The Zodiac" that I had told him about. Since my bro was in charge of records, he had access to info. After doing some research, my brother noted that the time frames fit perfectly for the suspect to be in the Bay Area in the Navy at the time of all killings and then he was sent to Japan about the time the killings stopped.

My brother and I preceded with this in mind......It would be a real longshot for "The Zodiac" to be this guy, but the Zodiac is out there and someone works with him or lives next door to him. So we decided to act on it.

My brother also talked of a "desk drawer" that the suspect kept under lock and key in the office. It was the only drawer of all the office drawers that was locked and he seemed to protect that drawer.

My brother sent me all info about the guy and it matched up real well with Zodiacs info. This is the info I took to the first meeting. About the second meeting Toschi wanted us to get that info in the locked drawer and make copies of it.

My brother got a key (I'm not sure how), and got into the drawer without the suspect knowing. He made copies of about 40 pieces of items in the drawer and sent them to me.

All copies were pictures of young women, models out of magazines, who had hand drawings on them. The drawings were of guns, bullets, knives and they were shooting and stabbing the girls. Blood was dripping from all of the models. To the side of the models were descriptions of each girl (that didn't match up with the models) and how they died. It was very detailed.

On the third meeting with Toschi, I presented him with these items, which they kept.

About a month later, Toschi called me and said that at this time they had cleared my suspect from the list by handwriting samples. He explained that they may need to get in touch with me again at a later date, but that at this time they didn't see him as a suspect.

I never heard from Toschi again. That was around 1970-1971.

I kept following the case very close, as did my brother. About 3 years later (approx), I saw in the Chronicle where 2 detectives in the Zodiac case were going to Scotland to interview a suspect in the case (I think it was Toschi and Armstrong, but can't remember the details). I called my brother and asked him to look up the records to see where my suspect was stationed in the Navy at that time. He was stationed in Scotland.

It has kept up my curiosity for years. And as a 17 year old at that time, the case was and is bigger than life.
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Deoxys
Username: Deoxys

Registered: 5-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 3:13 pm:   

Well, that guy was surely worth investigating, Socal. Remember Dennis Rader's little habit of cutting out "slick ads" of models from magazines? Your guy certainly had a sick imagination at the very least. Any idea where he is today?
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Socal
Username: Socal

Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 3:35 pm:   

I don't know where he is today. But I do know that he left the Navy about 10 years ago.

I can still find out how and will do so when the time is right.

***This guy was also heavy into Astrology and had many many books on his book shelf at his house about the stars etc. My brother and his wife had dinner over at his house once.
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Davidmm
Username: Davidmm

Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 4:02 pm:   

Fascinating story, Socal! Thanks for sharing it!

I still keep looking for my "suspect's" name to pop up somewhere. Even looking back, like you, I'd still go to the authorities if I was in the same situation today.

From having family members in LE, from working with the public, and from reading this board, it's pretty evident to me that there are a lot of feral kooks are out there, even if they can't all be Z. (Unless we reconsider the "Team Zodiac!" theory.)

It always causes me to pause when I see some suspect eliminated "because of handwriting" or something like "they're too perfect of a fit." If they're the wrong race, age, gender, or in the wrong state, then a quick dismissal is in order, but, I just can't help but think that the real Z has calmly sat and been interviewed and marked off someone's list.
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Socal
Username: Socal

Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 4:12 pm:   

My feelings exactly Davidmm.

I have thought for a long time that non of the suspects on this board are "The Zodiac".

I believe "The Zodiac" is in those orginal files, over looked and ruled out a long time ago.

A guy like my suspect or the 100's, maybe 1000's that are still in those files.
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Johno
Username: Johno

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 4:42 pm:   

I've got to go along with Socal in that they looked into the guy who was the Zodiac but not closely enough and he became overlooked or eroneously ruled out.
We've heard that there were 2500 possible suspects that they looked into and eliminated which seems like a high number but is probably close to true considering special Agent Melvin H. Nicolai's report that says by September 27, 1969 they had looked into and eliminated 481 suspects. From December 1968 to September 1969 that's more than 50 suspects a month. And that's before Stine's murder when they must have really stepped things up and then all the letters and communications from Zodiac that kept coming in.
Dennis Rader's name came up early in the BTK case and was quickly glossed over.
I wouldn't doubt that the Zodiac's real name came up somewhere in this investigation.
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Vallejo_dave
Username: Vallejo_dave

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 5:53 pm:   

I don't think that Z is any of the suspects we have posted on the board and are brow beating.

I have 2 suspects--one worked at the Presidio in 69, and also in Marin County. The other one has Santa Barbara ties, and moved north along the coast.
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Trolloc
Username: Trolloc

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Friday, January 05, 2007 - 7:57 pm:   

I really appreciate the replies. Douglas could you expand on the meta-codes? Very interesting.

My interest in the subject began in the late 80's, I was then deeply involved researching the JFK asassination, when I bought the YB by Greysmith. I remember reading the book:

I was lying in bed during a heavy rainstorm, I lived at the time on Mark West Springs Rd. in Santa Rosa. When the Santa Rosa murders were discussed and Mark West Springs was mentioned as a dumping ground for bodies...it was absolutely spooky. I grew up in Sonoma and remember the Napa Auto store about a block from the plaza. It was these connections to the places I lived or grew up in that just galvanized my interest in the case. By the way I still live in Santa Rosa and presently work on Scott St. in Pacific Heights, I drive past the Stine murder site everyday. This got me thinking about the case recently.

Thanks again for the info an keep it coming.

Trolloc
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Socal
Username: Socal

Registered: 6-2006
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 12:33 am:   

Johno, I believe that there are 2500 suspects or close to that number.

After Toschi interviewed me as a 17 year old, he took my dad and I into another office to show us the files on "The Zodiac". The files were numerous, taking up much of the room. Toschi looked at us (I think my dad asked him how many suspects they had) and said that all of these files are on individual suspects in the case.

Toschi made it sound in his voice that this was an enormous amount. That is how I took it at the time. I can still remember looking at all the files stacked up against the wall, taking up the entire side of one wall in the office.

He took us in there to demonstrate (in my opinion) of how much work he has on his hands, as well as the other detectives.

It is 100% true that many people were coming forward with information at that time. I got the impression that Toschi and staff were overwhelmed by it.
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Douglas_oswell
Username: Douglas_oswell

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Saturday, January 06, 2007 - 8:20 am:   

Trolloc, there's quite a bit to "expand" on with the meta-codes, but if you explore the various threads on this message board for the past year you'll see them discussed at length in various places. They're all detailed in my recently-finished book The Unabomber and the Zodiac, which I'm in the process of marketing now. Hopefully it will be available in some form within the next twelve months or so.
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Davidmm
Username: Davidmm

Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 11:42 am:   

I think this case, in particular, is such a lava-lamp of facts and suspicions that it makes it easy to jump to conclusions.

I'd be very interested in hearing if others have had the deeply-creepy experience of thinking, even for a moment, that they've met the Z.

Even if you don't want to share the details, just a "me too" would be enlightening.
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Sanfranguns
Username: Sanfranguns

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 12:52 pm:   

I work for a homeless services organization in San Francisco's Tenderloin district - not far from Mason & Geary. We see 200-300 people a day who are homeless, poor, have mental health issues, and many who have been around since the time of Z. I wonder everyday if one of them was Z.
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Vallejo_dave
Username: Vallejo_dave

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2007 - 3:51 pm:   

SF Guns---Eddy, Larkin, Leavanworth, Turk, O'Farrel?

I often had the feeling Z was on the buss with me back in the day.
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Sanfranguns
Username: Sanfranguns

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 6:23 am:   

VD - that's my neighborhood. I live on OFarrell & work near Turk & Leavenworth
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Vallejo_dave
Username: Vallejo_dave

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 7:28 am:   

" I'll be seeing you", lol.

I was in that area quite a bit. My company had many work comp accounts in that sector.
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Exiled
Username: Exiled

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2007 - 10:08 am:   

Zodiac is either dead or is living a meanial and dormant lifestyle. If he is alive he is probably 63-68 years old and is still suffering from what ever mental illness he has been cursed with....there is a strong possibilty(if indeed he is still amongst the living) that he is on disability and state assistance(welfare). That might be a good data base to search. Anyhow, I truly believe he is dead.
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Bomaye
Username: Bomaye

Registered: 1-2007
Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2007 - 11:03 am:   

Why is there a "strong possibility that he is on disability and state assistance"? How do we know if he had a mental illness? And even if he was, how would that be a good data base to search? There are hundreds of thousands of people on those two type of assistant programs. Ok, narrow it down to only 63-68 year olds... yup, still hundreds of thousands.
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Vallejo_dave
Username: Vallejo_dave

Registered: 4-2006
Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2007 - 4:24 pm:   

" In all the old familiar places". There are roughly 30,000 residents of the Tenderloin, and on any given day today, there are 10,000 non residents and transients passing thru!

Exiled--I had that same thought. Z would have to be on a pension today, or some type of public assistance. Welfare, SSI, SSD, Military pension, food stamps, regular pension, stock portfolio. If we had some kind of key to search these data bases, it might identify him, imo.

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