Mathematics Swings the Needle Strongly Towards Allen


Zodiackiller.com Message Board: Arthur Leigh Allen: Mathematics Swings the Needle Strongly Towards Allen

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldeqo.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.187.88) on Sunday, October 07, 2001 - 08:17 pm:

The answer to why Allen looks like the best suspect is: MATHEMATICS!

A while back there was a good disagreement between Tom and Jake regarding the relevance of Allen being in Riverside around CJB time. I would like to revisit that discussion with my own input. I do not agree with the
assertion that Tom's criteria of elimination were too broad to be meaningful. It might flesh out Tom's arguments a bit if we used some real numbers. Of course, numbers would necessarily be totally subjective,
but even so I think they will better illuminate Tom's point than just asking "how many people?" I'll show you
how a very large group of potential suspects can become a very small one very rapidly. For example,
extrapolating data from the U.S. Census Beurau, we'll say Vallejo had a population of about 65,000 in 1966,
and 40.7% of these people were caucasian, and 14% of the caucasians were hispanics. Let's apply some
simple mathematics to this:

ASSUMPTIONS: Zodiac lived in Vallejo. I know all about the other communities in the North Bay area where Z
may have lived. However, there are a number of salient posts offering good evidence he lived in Vallejo. I'm
not going to reiterate them now. I'm not going for an Allen conviction here, rather I'm just trying to quantify
in a general way how statistics can be a very strong compass to the perpetrator.

FACTS: We know ALA was a white male who lived in Vallejo. What are the odds that any white male from
Vallejo would be in Riverside on or about 10-30-66? (To undermine claims that Allen can't be put there on an
exact date, consider this: We actually might even be able to apply this result to the ENTIRE YEAR of 1966
since we have allowed such a wide variance - 1:100 to 1:1000 ! )

DATA:
Population of Vallejo in 1966: 65,000 (estimate based on US Census data)
Male/Female Ratio in northern CA: 50/50 (a guess)
Caucasian Population of Vallejo: 40.7% (estimate based on US Census data)
Hispanic Percentage: 14% (estimate based on US Census data)
(If the above are not completely accurate, it does not matter. Remember I am only showing a general
mathematical method of reduction.)

FORMULA:
(Total Population of Vallejo) x (Percentage of Males in this Population) x (Percentage of Caucasions) x
(Percentage of Whites in Caucasian Population) = Number of White Males Living in Vallejo

Thus:
65,000 x .5 x .407 x .86 = 11,375 WM's living in Vallejo

On any given day, how many residents of Vallejo would be in Riverside? A hard question to answer, but think
about it. On a Sunday, would a resident of Vallejo be in a rural town 400 miles away? How many residents
would be there? Would it be one in 10? No way, that would mean 6,500 people from Vallejo would be in
Riverside. (I'll bet it would be more like 1 in 10,000, making it 7 total!) But let's keep things totally in Mr.
Allen's favor and say it was an astronomical 1 in 100. That means that 650 people out of 65,000 would be in
Riverside, which works out to roughly 114 white males. I'm sure most people will agree that there is no way
these are the exact numbers, but most will probably agree that a fair guess would be somewhere between
1:100 and 1:1,000. Therefore, using the above formula, the number of white male Vallejo residents in
Riverside on 10-30-66 should be between 12 and 114. Taking the number in the middle of this range gives us
63. We have now whittled down 65,000 people to less than 100 in 4 simple steps using a mere handful of
facts, and in fact, by the very design of the experiment this is probably quite generous to ALA. It takes on even more powerful overtones when one considers that we are talking about Riverside, CA a developing rural
inland farming community. We are not talking about Vallejo residents that were in San Diego, Los Angeles, or
Sacramento. We're talking po-dunk, far-off Riverside. It must be stated here that it is not the aim of this
exercise (nor statistical methods in general) to arrive at precise numbers. In other words, we assume that 63 is not the correct number. What is significant about it is its size relative to the sample from which it came.

Now we can apply some other criteria to filter it out further:
Of these 63, how many also conformed to ALL of the following:

* Fit the Zodiac serial crime profile?
* Commited prior onerous crimes?
* Owned various different guns and knives?
* Missed work at suspicious times?
* Had handwriting that compared favorably to Zodiac?
* Could not provide alibis for LB or PH (or any other Zodiac crime)?
* Would intentionally offer incriminating evidence to police?
* Demonstratively knew at least one of the victims?
* Talked about hunting people/killing couples?
* Had personal items featuring Zodiac's crossed circle?
* Had bomb making materials and the correct type of typewriter at their home?
* Was photo ID'ed as the shooter by a surviving victim?
* Was not eliminated by the recollection of another survivor?
* Talked about being represented by Melvin Belli?
* Wrote forged/bogus letters?

How many people could we talking about now? Also, it is of vital importance to recognize that more important than the size of the groups in question is the suspect appearing in more than one of the groups. Can you imagine how small this number would be if we could also place Allen in SF or LB? We would be beyond the mathematics of the California Lottery if we could. That would just about put him away in my book. In no way can these criteria, when taken altogether, be described as "so broad as to be meaningless". Imagine how meaningful the above would in fact be if we could positively establish that Z lived in Vallejo. It should give one chills! Even if we knew he didn't live there, we could just find out the population of the North Bay area and crank out new numbers. Granted these would be bigger, but I would wager they would still be small enough to point strongly at ALA.

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (aca0b89b.ipt.aol.com - 172.160.184.155) on Sunday, October 07, 2001 - 08:22 pm:

I couldn't agree more that the numbers are in his favor, especially since he was known to frequent Lake Berryessa prior to Zodiac's attack in September 1969.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-19-58.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.19.58) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 11:41 am:

Ray: (And Tom; some numbers, maybe, but not these numbers; Berryessa ain't Riverside.) This is silly. All this means is that IF you assume that a white male Vallejoan ("WMV") did CJB, and IF you can prove that ALA, a WMV, was in Riverside when the murder was committed, then duh! odds are pretty high that ALA did CJB. As high as 1-in-11. The rest of it is meaningless, without attributing probabilities to the ifs and actually comparing suspect match criteria among all WMVs who were in riverside on 10/30/66.

Deriving the odds of any WMV being in Riverside at any given time is useless. All it means is that each of the 11,000 known WMVs had an equal chance -- whether 1-in-10 or 1 in a million -- of being in Riverside at the time. Unless you know WHICH 63 WMVs were in Riverside on the day of the attack, it doesn't narrow it down to anyone. You could go down your list of characteristics with any sample of the population, and it doesn't prove anything. It still could have been any one of the 11000, since each has an equal chance of being among the 63. Even if you did know which 63 they were, all it means even then is that any one of them has a 1-in-63 chance of being the one to commit any given act attributed to the group. If you are correct, and ALA is the guy, then your comparison of all those attributes will turn up no one better. If not, not. But this is a mere tautology, and has absolutely no bearing on whether ALA is a better or worse suspect. And, unless you know -- not assume -- that Z did CJB, the whole conclusion has to be further discounted by the odds that the one who did that act was not Z.

By this same sort of "reasoning" you use, I can narrow the group of suspects down to one, in one step. Doesn't bring us any closer to identifying who that one is, however.

Ray, one problem is that you assume a 100 percent probability that Z was in Riverside on the night of the 30th. Your correlation with Allen is no stronger than that probability -- in fact can only be some fraction of that -- and there is no evidence that Z did CJB. Wrote the three notes? Maybe. Wrote the poem? Anything is possible. But killed CJB? Please.

Work out this math: I'll give you 1-in-1000, not 1-in-100, odds that any white male Vallejoan was in Riverside on Sunday the 30th. That puts the number of WMVs in Riverside at 11. Resulting in a 1-in-eleven chance that any given one of them did any particular deed at the time and place, all else being equal.

And I'll give you 100 percent that Z was a Vallejoan.

So now you tell us just what places Allen in Riverside over that weekend (NOT Pomona 2 days later) and we'll assign a probability to that. I'm guessing maybe 1-in-10 would be generous. (If you can't place ALA in Riverside on the 30th, then he becomes one of the group of 11000 WMVs over all, rather than the 5 who were in Riverside, giving a factor of 1-in-11000, rather than 1 in ten for the exercise.)

But here's the kicker: the assumption that Z did CJB. Tell us what attributes the CJB murder to Z and we'll assign a probability to that. One in 100 would be extremely generous, given what we know of the crime, but let's call it that.

Then we'll multiply these together. (All WVMs in Riverside, or 1/11) X (ALA in Riverside, or 1/10) X (Z did CJB, or 1 in 100). 1/11 X 1/10 X 1/100 = 1/11000

I get a probability of 1 in 11000 that ALA was Z, based on a very generous indulgence of your approach. That's not even enough to get a search warrant, much less an indictment.

See, your basic premise, making the first cut at Vallejo residency for CJB's killer, has absolutlely zero support. It assumes both Z's residency and that Z did CJB.

Second, just what is the evidence that Allen was in Riverside? "Allegedly" is the best Tom comes up with in the "ALA File", but even there he doesn't say alleged by whom. At most, he has Allen saying he was in "nearby" Pomona (30 miles away) when he heared about CJB. And the absence was for Tuesday, two days after the attack. Any evidence that he was not at work bright and early Monday morning, the morning after the attack? Nope. So just exactly what is the evidence supporting this "allegation" that he was in Riverside over the weekend?

Some "mathematics".

Peter_H

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb41dd1.ipt.aol.com - 172.180.29.209) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 11:59 am:

In early 2000, I was told by a retired (California) State Department of Justice Investigations Division Special Agent that in 1971, Allen was placed in Riverside the weekend Bates was killed.

White male adults weren't abundant in Vallejo back in the 1960s, especially if you are talking Zodiac's presumed age-range. (25 to 35.) Allen fit, and he was also known to frequent the right spots, even before Zodiac was known to. When you add Allen's access to weapons and bomb-making knowledge, the numbers are stacked in his favor...IMHO.
And that is without taking into consideration his confessions.

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-ntc-tc072.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.17.52) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 02:54 pm:

Peter, Ray, interesting posts,
but I think you both have wrong suppositions. First of all it seems much more likely that the killer of CJB was living in Riverside at the time, then later moved up North. (First things first). Cheri was clearly stalked which means someone had at least been watching her, not planned the whole thing on a day trip after watching car races, then the letters all came from the Riverside area so it was either a Riverside resident or a frequent visitor. At any rate, the whole idea of Allen being in Riverside anyway is sketchy at best. At that time the "Inland Empire" - vast area-- was sparsely populated so people often called Ontario (10 miles from Pomona) -"the Riverside area", now Ontario has a great big Raceway, so if he was staying in Pomona, which I do believe, he would most likely have been to the Ontario Speedway. (I don't even know of any Riverside Raceway, and I live there.) But Ontario is not right next to Riverside so I doubt Allen would have moseyed down to RCC to stalk and kill a coed. Interestingly Ray, several of the major suspects have some sort of Riverside tie and I mean LIVING there. Marshall apparently had a home there at the time, and Bruce Davis, it is becoming more and more clear was very much living in Riverside in 1966. ( Bruce also had a 7"wrist and did housepainting). Others like TedK, Penn and Kane could have had a reason to be staying there.
Peter, it may be inductive logic, but come on--how could Z not be the killer of CJB? If you want to go with your reasoning, I guess the only one we really KNOW Z killed was Paul Stine (the shirt), I guess the others were just maybe ones he was taking credit for.
At any rate, I think the only hope that Allen is Zodiac is if Zodiac did not kill CJB, as I find the whole idea of Allen being Cheri Jo's killer preposterous. (And I hear from many others on this board that they do too.)

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb5d0e5.ipt.aol.com - 172.181.208.229) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 04:47 pm:

Sylvie, what evidence is there that Cheri Jo was stalked? And why are you doubting the source who gave me that info about Allen? (Info which was later corroborated by a second retired special agent, I might add.) Do you know better than they do? No.

Allen was in Riverside the weekend Bates was killed. Get used to it.

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-ntc-td064.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.17.179) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 08:22 pm:

The stalking would be the eyewitness reports of her being closely followed on the way to the library (he must have known it was her car and not - say - the football star's car -- I do not think it was a lucky guess), then the confession letter (unless you discount it), the letters to the Dad.
I do not doubt the sincerity of the cops that relayed the Riverside info, I only wish it was clarified -- where was this Speedway, at what time was he there?? There is also the possibility of it being Riverside County (a huge County which includes Palm Springs -- many miles away).

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldfe3.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.189.195) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 08:45 pm:

What is the probability that Peter H needs new eyeglasses? I was pretty sure some people would get all wrapped up with the numerical details of my last post and miss the point entirely. What we have here is a classic FOREST AND TREES problem. I made it quite clear that I wasn't going for a conviction with this. Look at all the numerology posts on here. What, are they going to court with that stuff? I was only trying to show in a general way how one can look at a suspect (in this case ALA) in a numerical context.

Peter H:
"All this means is that IF you assume that a white male Vallejoan ("WMV") did CJB, and IF you can prove that ALA, a WMV, was in Riverside when the murder was committed, then duh! odds are pretty high that ALA did CJB. "

Yep, that's all it means. That's good, too, 'cause that was my point. And for purposes of my example, that's what I assumed. I think I said that in the post.

"Deriving the odds of any WMV being in Riverside at any given time is useless. All it means is that each of the 11,000 known WMVs had an equal chance -- whether 1-in-10 or 1 in a million -- of being in Riverside at the time. Unless you know WHICH 63 WMVs were in Riverside on the day of the attack, it doesn't narrow it down to anyone. You could go down your list of characteristics with any sample of the population, and it doesn't prove anything."

Useless? Wow, where do I start? I agree that 63 is actually a pretty meaningless number. I'm quite sure I made this clear also. The one important aspect of 63 is that it is very small compared to 65,000. Deriving the odds of any WMV being in Riverside is far from useless. OF COURSE they all had an equal (and unknown) chance of being there! What you dismiss is exactly what is most important. The whole point was that a comparatively tiny fraction of Vallejoans were probably actually there and therefore the chances of any one specific individual ending up by pure chance in the small group (one of the 63) is quite small. The chances of ALA RANDOMLY appearing in the small group is, according to my EXAMPLE, about 11,375 to 1. You assert that this proves nothing. I agree, and I reiterate that it was not my intention to prove anything. Going down a list of characteristics with any sample of the population is precisely what law enforcement does with criminal profiles! No, profiles don't prove anything, but most people agree they are useful investigative tools.

"By this same sort of "reasoning" you use, I can narrow the group of suspects down to one, in one step. Doesn't bring us any closer to identifying who that one is, however. "

Again, the exact numbers that we end up with are not important. What matters is that we have a very large group, and a very small group, and our suspect appears in both groups. We don't have to know who the 63 are! In fact, with the exception of our suspect (whom we do not have to just surmise might be there by random chance), it would be pointless for us to know who they are!

"Ray, one problem is that you assume a 100 percent probability that Z was in Riverside on the night of the 30th. Your correlation with Allen is no stronger than that probability "

In fact I made no such assumption, and specifically said so in my post. As I already stated, the range of odds used in the example are probably good enough for one person from Vallejo to be in Riverside by random chance anytime in the same YEAR that CJB was killed. The fact that we can put Allen there very close to the date of the murder even bolsters the case further, although I'll admit to being at a loss to account for this numerically.

"But here's the kicker: the assumption that Z did CJB. Tell us what attributes the CJB murder to Z and we'll assign a probability to that. One in 100 would be extremely generous, given what we know of the crime, but let's call it that. "

I categorically did NOT assume that Z did Bates. What I assumed was, AGAIN, that Z was a WMV. That Allen was a WMV, a Zodiac suspect, and was in Riverside around the time of the murder, SUGGESTS that Z killed CJB, but no way was that an assumption.

"See, your basic premise, making the first cut at Vallejo residency for CJB's killer, has absolutlely zero support. It assumes both Z's residency and that Z did CJB. "

Peter, two things. First, you're right - this cut has zero support. I made it out of convenience for the purpose of illustration because I didn't feel like trying to find out the white male population of the entire North Bay area in 1966. Don't even try to argue Z didn't live in the North Bay. As I said, if I had North Bay numbers, I could come up with a different range. After running that against all the other known Allen/Zodiac commonalities, the numbers would undoubtedly still point strongly to Allen. Second, show me someone else who still looks good for Bates other than Z?

If we could put Allen in the area of other crimes, say LB for example, then we could do more numbers for that, and after awhile we might have numerous small groups with Allen in each of them. That's how they busted a big California arsonist who ended up being a well-known arson investigator. I'm not saying we have Allen by the hair here, I'm just saying that we have a good start down that road at Riverside. If VDP would just pick up their phone we might be able to put an end to these kinds of excercises! Some people get this stuff and some people don't. Maybe it's like surfing. Just ask yourself exactly what it is you don't like - my arguments or that they indicate CJB as a Z crime?

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb43fa5.ipt.aol.com - 172.180.63.165) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 09:37 pm:

Sylvie, there is no evidence Cheri Jo was "closely followed" on her way to the library. Just because someone thought they saw her driving and a car was behind her doesn't mean it was a stalker. When I drove to the store today, there were many cars behind me.

How is the confession (and other letters) evidence of stalking? To me they are simply the product of someone trying to get media attention by concocting scary letters. If you are choosing to take the writings literally then please explain why nobody ever found "female parts" deposited around Riverside?

By Joe (Joe) (adsl-63-204-73-178.dsl.scrm01.pacbell.net - 63.204.73.178) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 11:12 pm:

Ray's speculation reminds me a bit of Drake's Equation. Sounds like he's hit just as many nerves as he did in trying to provide a mathematical formula as to the existence of life elsewhere in the universe. I appreciated the work you put into it, Ray. It could very well have been used in a court of law had Allen been tried.

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-ntc-ta043.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.16.38) on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 11:29 pm:

Tom,
what about Cheri Jo's car? Do you believe that was just chosen at ramdom? It could have been anyone's?

By Ray N (Ray_N) (209.86.190.236) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 11:00 am:

Sylvie,
I think it's possible that the raceway referred to was the Pomona drag strip. It is located right across the street from Brackett Field. I think this is technically in La Verne, but they hold the NHRA Winternationals there and it is always advertised by them as being Pomona. This place has been there a long time, no doubt it existed in the '60s.

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (spider-ntc-tc022.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.17.27) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 11:30 am:

If Zodiac managed to get from Blue Rock Springs to Lake Berryessa to Presidio Heights, I'm sure Allen could have gotten to the RCC campus from wherever he was in that area.

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (spider-ntc-tc022.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.17.27) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 11:33 am:

Sylvie, just because Cheri Jo's car was tampered with doesn't mean it was the work of a long-term stalker. For all we know, whoever did it could have spotted her minutes before she arrived at the library.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (141.154.19.58) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 12:58 pm:

Tom; thanks for the additional info, but . . . As I understand it, that particular bit of information was as Sylvie implies, to the effect that Big Al was digging the scene either at the Ontario Motor Speedway or the drag strip in Pomona over the weekend. This does not place hi in Riverside. Even the long gone Riverside International Raceway (now a parking lot) Riverside, was still way out of town. Maybe enough to boost this factor to 1-in-5.

Sylvie:

"How could Z not be the killer of CJB?" Are you kidding? How about "There is not one bit of evidence that he was."? How about 42 stab wounds, including a near decapitation, and an hour or so of conversation down a dark walkway? How about not one bit of Z handwriting on a letter detailing the crime? Z was tied to BRS and LHR by demonstrating in his confirmed letters knowledge only the killer could have. Same writer and killer linked to Stine through handwriting and the shirt. Linked to LB (in the minds of most -- not mine) by handwriting on the Ghia door and crime signature. Linked to the CJB killing itself by not a single thing.

Ray:

""All this means is that IF you assume that a white male Vallejoan ("WMV") did CJB, and IF you can prove that ALA, a WMV, was in Riverside when the murder was committed, then duh! odds are pretty high that ALA did CJB. "

Yep, that's all it means. That's good, too, 'cause that was my point. And for purposes of my example, that's what I assumed. I think I said that in the post." "

Actually, no, you didn't. You said that 1. Z was a WMV (which I gave you) 2. ALA was also a WMV (given) and 3. that ALA was in Riverside on 10/30/66 (disputed, but an assumption). What you did not say, but which is an unstated assumption of your argument, is that Z was in Riverside on 10/30/66, presumably because he killed CJB. Otherwise, ALA's presence there does not as you put it swing the needle in his direction. If you do not assume Z did CJB, then placing ALA in Riverside on that date tends to exonerate him, rather than connect him, to the Z killings. Why would you agree that a WMV did CJB ("Yep, that's all it means") unless you mean that Z was the WMV in question?

If on the other hand, this really IS what you meant to say, then two points: first, that's all that has any significance. The numbers -- good, bad or indifferent, add nothing to the argument. Especially since as you say, the actual odds are problematical. Why go through all the quasi-quantitative analysis if the specific numbers don't mean anything? Second, the significance of ALA's presence itself is no stronger than the probability that Z did CJB. If Z was not in Riverside that night, then the significance (of ALA's being there)is zero. And I think its pretty clear that the odds of CJB's killer being Z are pretty small. But to press on . . .


"The chances of ALA RANDOMLY appearing in the small group is, according to my EXAMPLE, about 11,375 to 1. You assert that this proves nothing. I agree, and I reiterate that it was not my intention to prove anything. "

1. Actually, the chances of of ALA appearing in that group randomly, according to your EXAMPLE, were about 11,375 to 63. But then the specific numbers are pretty meaningless, aren't they. You determined, based on selecting the midpoint of 1/100 applied to 11,375 and 1/1000 applied to the same sample, giving a result of 63. So any of those 11,375 WMV's had a random chance of 63 in 11,375 of being in Riverside that day. According to your EXAMPLE. But I digress. Whether it 1 or 63, what's the significance of the fact that he is there? The sole significance is our level of certainty that the group also includes Z. the smaller the group, the highr the chances that ALA and Z are one and the same, if we know that Z is in the same group. Otherwise, just what is the point of developing the group?

2. Sorry. My mistake. I was sure you were trying to prove that ALA's being in Riverside on 10/30/66 proved that he is mathematically a better suspect. Glad to hear you weren't trying to prove anything.

""Ray, one problem is that you assume a 100 percent probability that Z was in Riverside on the night of the 30th. Your correlation with Allen is no stronger than that probability "

In fact I made no such assumption, and specifically said so in my post. As I already stated, the range of odds used in the example are probably good enough for one person from Vallejo to be in Riverside by random chance anytime in the same YEAR that CJB was killed. The fact that we can put Allen there very close to the date of the murder even bolsters the case further, although I'll admit to being at a loss to account for this numerically." "

1. No such assumption? Actually,you specifically said no such thing in your post, but let me get this straight. Your thesis is that placing ALA in Riverside the day of CJB's murder, or anytime during 1966, mathematically makes Allen look like the best suspect in the Z killings, with absolutely no correlation to Z's presence there at the same time? Just exactly what is the significance of ALA's being there then? Or the assumption that Z was a WMV, if you are not tying Z to Riverside? What else is the basis for your supposition (as you acknowledge in the first quote ) that it was a WMV that did CJB?

2. And what could possibly be the significance of ALA's being in Riverside at any other time of the year? What mathematical correlation could there possibly be between presence in Riverside and being a Z suspect unless the presence in Riverside was on (not near, on) a known Z date. BTW, I think I can help you "account for this numerically". If the probability that a particular WMV was in Riverside on a given day 1 in 1000, the odds for a year are 365.25 in 1000.


"I categorically did NOT assume that Z did Bates. What I assumed was, AGAIN, that Z was a WMV. That Allen was a WMV, a Zodiac suspect, and was in Riverside around the time of the murder, SUGGESTS that Z killed CJB, but no way was that an assumption. "

OK, Ray, all kidding (and derision) aside, I get it, based on this excerpt from your second post. I hope you, and everyone reading this, can see the circularity of the reasoning. You set out to show that ALA's presence in Riverside increases his odds a a Z suspect. But the importance of his presence at the time of a suspected Z crime is only as strong as the probability that it was a Z crime. Otherwise there is no point at all in drawing any other correlation to Z, such as the fact that he was also a WMV. But rather than admitting that you assume that Z did CJB, you say you only rely on the very fact of ALA's viability as a Z suspect to support the significance of CJB as a Z crime. Thus you assume your conclusion as a given in the body of your proof. This is pure circular,or bootstrap reasoning.

Look at it another way: I think you will agree that your argument, as I simplified it first above, is correspondingly stronger or weaker depending on how sure we are that Z did CJB. If this is a certainty, then any WMV's presence in Riverside on the date increases suspicion against him. At the other extreme, if we knew that Z did not do CJB, then I think you would also agree that ALAs presence in Riverside on the date would be of no significanvce, or even tend to exonerate him. But if the strength of our suspicion that Z did CJB is limited to the fact that ALA was a suspect and was in the area at the time, then you are saying nothing more than the strength of ALA as a suspect is greater because he is a suspect. That's purely circular, and supports no conclusion regardless of the numbers involved.

the only other possibility -- one that does not depend on some assumed probability that CJB was a Z crime -- is to say look, here you have a WMV who was in Riverside at the time of the JCB murder, couldn't he also be to WMV who did these other murders. In that case, there is no significance to Riverside, and the question you would have to ask is not about Riverside, but during the period of say 1960 to 1970, how many WMVs were present in cities outsdide Vallejo when murders were committed there?

I have plenty more, but you get back to us on this.

Peter

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (proxy2-external.epotlnd1.or.home.com - 24.4.255.69) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 01:48 pm:

The DOJ placed Allen in Riverside the weekend Bates was killed. Not Pomona, Los Angeles or anyplace else. RIVERSIDE.
Sorry it ruins your day, but that's the way it is...and arguing about it won't change a thing.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-19-58.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.19.58) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 02:16 pm:

Tom: Not arguing about it. And it certainly doesn't ruin my day. Just, as always, looking for specifics, the direct information, as how they placed him there, how specific the time was, etc. That's how I evaluate how meaningful the information is. OK, based on Tom's authority, let's make ALA in Riverside a 1. What is the significance of that, in view of whatever the odds are that Z did CJB? In fact, Tom, I think you could enlighten this debate a little. Two questions in particular: do you think CJB was a Z crime? And, independent of your opinion on that, do you see ALA as as good a suspect for CJB as for the confirmed Z crimes?

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldfa7.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.189.71) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 05:34 pm:

As I read Peter H's last post, I got the feeling I was sitting on a jury somewhere listening to a defense lawyer refute some testimony about odds and so forth. He is doing what a skilled attorney would do in the face of damaging facts against his client. He negates everything that was said by simply twisting everything up into such a tangled mess of knots that the jury is totally confused, and unsure of what to believe, will likely just disregard that entire portion of the testimony.

In my summation, I will try to put it back into simple terms.

We have a guy who kills people in our town and in others. He calls himself X. We know this because we find dead bodies and get letters from him. A police department in a different jurisdiction starts thinking maybe they have a crime by this guy. Then we get a letter from X who claims he did it. During subsequent investigation we not only develop a suspect, but determine he was there at this far away little place around the time of the murder.

After a little numerical analysis we realize that it is not very likely for our suspect to have been at this other place by pure chance and yet not be connected to that crime. The fact that he is a suspect here makes us think more strongly about him as a suspect there for a crime X claims he commited. The strength of our suspicion of him there is greater than it would be otherwise because he is a suspect here and can be proved to be there. If we did not suspect him here, we would not suspect him there.
I do not see this as circular reasoning of any sort.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-mtc-tc051.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.105.171) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 05:49 pm:

Given the evidence -- which indicates that the murder was not premeditated and certainly not planned as a tool with which to taunt cops or get media attention -- the most likely reason for Bates' murder was a spurned advance.

So what was a boy-lover doing hitting on a pretty co-ed?

And why couldn't a big guy like Allen, who beat up Marines in his spare time, take out a 110 lb girl without a struggle that turned the ground into a "plowed field?"

--Jake
http://www.ZodiacSpeaking.com

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (71.philadelphia01rh.16.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.17.71) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 06:13 pm:

And why was his wristwatch only seven inches in circumference?

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) (spider-wf064.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.195.184) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 07:22 pm:

Ray: There is no conclusive evidence that supports the notion that Zodiac killed CJB.

Jake, Doug: The answer to your questions is simple: Zodiac didn't kill CJB. There is no evidence -- unlike LHR, BRS, LB, and PH -- to support the idea of CJB being a definite Zodiac victim, and you both know that.

Scott

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (spider-ntc-td051.proxy.aol.com - 198.81.17.171) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 07:23 pm:

Jake, Allen apparently molested far more girls than he did boys.

Doug, we don't know what size wrists Allen had, so it's pointless to keep bringing that up. Maybe his wrists were small. Who knows?

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldemo.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.186.216) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 07:33 pm:

Many good questions. Also, why did Zodiac wait until much later to claim credit for her? Why did he forget to mention her on the car door at LB? I know, I know. It's very interesting and very frustrating. There's evidence both ways. DNA might give us the truth-colored lenses we all need.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldemo.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.186.216) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 07:46 pm:

Why does one have to have conclusive evidence of CJB being a Z crime in order to investigate the possibility? Stating that no such evidence exists gets an investigation nowhere. Investigations are supposed to uncover evidence if it exists. Just because Bates is not a definite victim, does it mean we don't compare DNA from that crime to Allen? That makes about as much sense as Riverside not participating in the Zodiac Task Force because they can't be sure theirs was the work of Z. Accept everything as a possibility until you can prove it to be impossible. Rule out everything until you have only that which cannot be ruled out. Then you have the truth.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) (spider-mtc-th013.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.23) on Tuesday, October 09, 2001 - 08:09 pm:

"Why does one have to have conclusive evidence of CJB being a Z crime in order to investigate the possibility? Stating that no such evidence exists gets an investigation nowhere. Investigations are supposed to uncover evidence if it exists."

I agree with you completely. However, in the 35 years since CJB's murder, not a single shred of evidence has surfaced to connect Zodiac with this crime. Doesn't this strike you as being odd?

Scott

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-tn082.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.207.82) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 09:06 am:

Scott,
How about an expert by the name of Morrill?
How about "my Riverside activity"?
How about Tom Voight, who I know you respect, who I get the distinct impression believes that CJB was definitely a Zodiac crime!

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (133.philadelphia01rh.16.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.17.133) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 09:36 am:

Tom, I was born with an unnaturally skinny set of wrists, seven inches exactly in circumference. I know skinny wrists, and I've seen good photos of Allen, and he didn't have a seven-inch wrist.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) (spider-mtc-tf014.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.103.24) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 09:55 am:

Sylvie,

Even with Morrill's findings, CJB is still not considered a definite Zodiac victim. I respect Morrill tremendously, but his findings alone would never get a conviction.

"My Riverside activity" -- unsubstantiated hearsay. Using this line of reasoning, are we to believe that Zodiac actually killed 37+ people? Are we to believe that Zodiac's real name was encrypted in the 3 part cryptogram? Do you see where I'm going with this?

Regardless of my respect for Tom V, his beliefs and opinions on this matter are just that -- beliefs and opinions. That hardly means that CJB was a Zodiac victim.

Look, I'm not saying that CJB wasn't a Zodiac victim. Instead, I'm stating a simple fact; there simply isn't enough evidence to support the belief that she was. Finding CJB's killer won't necessarily lead us to Zodiac. In my opinion, it's more logical to concentrate our efforts on the known Zodiac crimes and then work outward to see if other unsolved murders, including CJB, can be connected to Zodiac.

Just my opinion.

Scott

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-20-191.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.20.191) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 01:10 pm:

Ray:

Don't blame the messenger. The "tangled mess" is your "numbers", not my fault when a simple analysis exposes it.

OK, let's try it your way, with X. First problem is we never did get a letter from X claiming he did it. One letter refers to my "activity" in that other town, and just like a bunch of other claims X makes, it's vague, unsubstantiated and contradicted by every other fact known about the crime down there. But let that slide: for whatever reason, we still believe that X did the deed down there long ago and far away. So now we got a suspect here for X's crimes: "Y", who was down there when the murder was committed. Its obviously a pretty unlikely coincidence, and we don't need any numbers to tell us that. Sleazebag child molester from up north, whom a lot of people think did those kids out on LHR, happens to be in SoCal podunk on the day of a gruesome murder. Numbers don't add a thing to this picture.

So we're pretty excited, those of us trying to identify X, cause if we can tie X to this little town, AND we can tie Y there too, maybe we can tie X to being Y. Real simple syllogism: like A=B, B=C, so A=C. Except we use Y and X. Call the little town murder "R". We are looking for "Y is X", right? Maybe not: in your words "The strength of our suspicion of him [Y] there [R] is greater than it would be otherwise because he is a suspect here [for X] and can be proved to be there [R] . If we did not suspect him [Y] here [for X], we would not suspect him there[R]. I do not see this as circular reasoning of any sort." No? Well maybe not. If all you are trying to prove is that his presence theremakes it look like he did CJB, then maybe not. We got a guy so sleazy a lot of people thin he might be X down there on the day of the murder. Is that it? then fine, but you don't need a single number to make that point. ALA coulda done CJB. End of discussion.

But what about demonstrating the strength of our suspicion of him HERE, i.e. that ALA was "numerically" a better Z suspect because of the Riverside conection. Or are you ONLY trying to show that he is a better Riverside suspect because of a suspected connection between ALA and Z. Which is it? Or is your main point that CJB was a Z crime ("That Allen was a WMV, a Zodiac suspect, and was in Riverside around the time of the murder, SUGGESTS that Z killed CJB," "Just ask yourself exactly what it is you don't like - my arguments or that they indicate CJB as a Z crime? ")

Which is it? Pick one and let us know, and we'll look at it one at a time.

BTW, I am certainly not concerned that your analysis makes CJB look like a Z crime. If ALA did CJB, then I think it becomes far remote that he did LHR, BRS and PH. I think it would be somewhat more consistent with LB, but I think a conviction on CJB would tend to exonerate on the others. So please, I would love to see CJB pinned on ALA, but I don't think there's the remotest chance of that, even he could be placed in the library reading Road & Track on Sunday evening.

Why don't we take it from the top? Literally. You go back to your first post, very first sentence, and answer the question; "Suspect for what? The known Z crimes or CJB?"

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-20-191.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.20.191) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 02:07 pm:

Sylvie:

Morrill's findings don't go anywhere near naming CJB as a Z victim, at most the 3 notes and the poem as Z's work. IMHO the poem isn't remotely related to CJB and in any event cannot be tied to the killer, and the notes revealed absolutely no knowledge of the crime other than that it happened, and so can't be tied to the killer.

"[M]y Riverside activity" came after the suspected Z connection was publicized, did not refer to the murder itself, and claimed that there are a lot more of them down there. Which there weren't. Puts it right op there with [Z sign} = 37, the bus bomb and the claim of giving KJ a ride.

As for Tom: I recently asked him in this thread for his opinion on CJB as a Z victim, as well as an ALA victim, but haven't heard. I would still welcome it, along with a summary of his reasons. I happen to find CJB and LB (along with Tajiguas) far and away the more fascinating parts of the whole case (even though I don't buy the connection of either one to LHR, BRS or PH) and would really like to hear more of Tom's insights on both.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldejc.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.186.108) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 02:13 pm:

Peter,

Suspect for being the killer of CJB, primarily. But also for the known Z crimes as a result of this suspicion, because he was a Z suspect in Vallejo. Whether or not I assumed that Z killed Bates, which I didn't, has no bearing because Z claimed Bates and that establishes enough of a connection to at least take a good look. I'll say again that the numbers I came up with don't really mean much, but they could start to mean something if we could ever place Allen in the vicinity of known Z crimes.

Look Peter, I accept that you don't like what I've said, or that you simply find it silly, useless, misdirected, irrelevant, circular, stupid, or even offensive. I am quite sure that as long as I try to explain what I was thinking and what I was trying to show that you will keep up the relentless assault on my viewpoint. It may well be that my viewpoint is not worth the space it takes up on Tom's server and I am quite wrong about all of this and that you are far too intelligent and skilled as a debator for me to compete with. It is not my aim to prevail in a protracted discussion on this, particularly one which I am not prepared to defend much more than I have. I was only trying to offer to the board a description of how I look at the case. If my views have no merit, I can live with that. In any event, I look forward to a DNA comparison between the Riverside DNA and ALA.

BTW - Are there any other readers of this exchange apart from Peter that find what I said ludicrous?

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldejc.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.186.108) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 02:22 pm:

Scott -
You wrote - "In my opinion, it's more logical to concentrate our efforts on the known Zodiac crimes and then work outward to see if other unsolved murders, including CJB, can be connected to Zodiac. "

I would agree with this, except for the fact that the investigations on the known Zodiac crimes are essentially stalled from a police standpoint, whereas we have a possible Z crime with DNA analysis ready for comparison. If we can eliminate Allen from the CJB crime, it narrows the possiblities. This would be an advance in the case, albeit a small one. Not only that, it is something that would be easy to accomplish. So why do we have to be so sure CJB was Z before we do a little investigation?

Scott also wrote - "However, in the 35 years since CJB's murder, not a single shred of evidence has
surfaced to connect Zodiac with this crime. Doesn't this strike you as being odd?"

There is a typewriter somewhere, a knife, who knows what else, and a DNA profile of ALA. These are big shreds of evidence. The fact that they don't connect Z to Bates may only be because the police have not taken the time to determine if Allen wrote the confession letter on his typewriter, stabbed a Z victim with his knife, and/or is a match to the Riverside DNA. It is these things which strike me as odd.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-to074.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.204.79) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 06:03 pm:

Scott wrote:
"Jake, Doug: The answer to your questions is simple: Zodiac didn't kill CJB."

Well, we agree on that much! Doesn't look like everyone shares our opinion, though, does it?

Ray wrote:
"Are there any other readers of this exchange apart from Peter that find what I said ludicrous?"

That might be stating it too harshly, but I found your initial litany of "similarities" to be tellingly vague. To wit:

* Fit the Zodiac serial crime profile?

Allen, as a (relatively) nonviolent pedophile, certainly did not fit the Z profile.

* Commited prior onerous crimes?

Child molestation is certainly onerous, but so are blackmail, armed robbery, and check kiting. None of these are particularly indicative of the Zodiac's dual urges to glorify himself and terrorize others.

* Missed work at suspicious times?

You're a day late.

* Had handwriting that compared favorably to Zodiac?

Well, we've been through that one. No professional has ever stated that the comparison was favorable.

* Could not provide alibis for LB or PH (or any other Zodiac crime)?

This might have been better stated as "did not."

* Demonstratively knew at least one of the victims?

I beg your pardon? Which victim was that?

* Had bomb making materials and the correct type of typewriter at their home?

Let's bear in mind that a) Z never built a bomb, and b) we aren't sure whether he had the right model -- the FBI offered a dissenting opinion in their report.

It goes on and on. Everything that can be seen as an Allen/Zodiac link can just as easily -- and more realistically, given the physical evidence -- be attributed to the weird personality traits of a man who wanted to fool around with the cops and got in over his head.

Every Tom, Doug, and Harvey investigating a suspect has such a laundry list, and in a vaccuum, each is convincing. Line 'em up against each other, though, and they all start to look the same.

Incidentally, Gareth Penn has published about 400 pages proving that one can use statistical analysis -- or the semblance thereof -- to prove almost anything about almost anyone. Check him out sometime. If he doesn't take your mind off of Allen, he'll at least cure your insomnia.

--Jake
http://www.ZodiacSpeaking.com

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldcq4.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.179.68) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 06:46 pm:

Jake,
OK, I'll do that, I only sleep about 4 to 5 hours a day, maybe he will help.

One thing,
Didn't Don Cheney reveal to Tom that Allen was interested in a waitress at the IHOP near where he lived without even realizing at that point that she was one of the BRS victims? Or does this not demonstrate anything? Maybe I used the wrong word, I probably should have said "may have".

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) (spider-wf052.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.195.173) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 06:58 pm:

Ray wrote:

"Whether or not I assumed that Z killed Bates, which I didn't, has no bearing because Z claimed Bates . . ."

He did? I'd like to know exactly where you found this information because, to my knowledge, it doesn't exist.

"If we can eliminate Allen from the CJB crime, it narrows the possiblities (sic)."

How did you come to that conclusion? If CJB wasn't murdered by Zodiac then exactly what possibility is being narrowed? That ALA wasn't Zodiac? Are you saying that if the DNA from Riverside doesn't match ALA's DNA then he wasn't Zodiac? I think you know that doesn't stand to reason. This is exactly why I feel we should be concentrating our efforts, first and foremost, on the known Zodiac crimes.

"There is a typewriter somewhere, a knife, who knows what else, and a DNA profile of ALA. These are big shreds of evidence."

The typewriter seized from ALA's home had a different typeset than that used to write the Riverside letters. The knife in question was probably used at Lake Berryessa, not in Riverside. Again, if ALA's DNA profile doesn't match the DNA from Riverside, that doesn't mean ALA wasn't the Zodiac, but rather that ALA didn't murder CJB.

Jake wrote:

"Well, we agree on that much! Doesn't look like everyone shares our opinion, though, does it?"

No, it sure doesn't, and for the life of me I can't figure out why. One can only hope that if, and when, the Riverside DNA is compared with samples from the top Zodiac suspects and doesn't match, that these suspects won't be eliminated. That would be a huge and grievous error.

Scott

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-wo032.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.200.32) on Wednesday, October 10, 2001 - 10:22 pm:

It is good to see a lively debate again, I believe it shows we are all healing.
Ray, congrats on starting a good discussion.
Now, first of all can we put the possibility of Allen having 7" wrists to rest? We have already heard from the posters who actually really knew Allen that there was no way he had 7" wrists (like it wasn't already obvious?) Period. So if Allen killed CJB, the watch was a plant, that simple.
Secondly, why is it so impossible to believe that Z killed 37+ as he stated? That would have been small potatos for a serial killer like Ted Bundy.
Finally, Scott I see your point but look at it this way if for example the CJB DNA winds up matching with say Marshall or Ted K or even Kane, t wouldn't we be pretty sure then of Z's identity?

By Eduard (Eduard) (s340-isdn1601.dial.xs4all.nl - 194.109.186.65) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 12:10 am:

About the Riverside watch...
Do we know for certain the watch in the picture ( where you can read the arms of it ) is the same watch as found at the crimescene.
I highly doubt that.

Eduard

P.S. Soon on my website the answer why I doubt that.

By Eduard (Eduard) (1cust48.tnt55.rtm1.nl.uu.net - 213.117.28.48) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 07:39 am:

Now on my site...
My strange findings in connection to the Riverside watch!
This is the link for the page where it's on:
"The Riverside watch".

Eduard

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) (spider-mtc-tl074.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.107.184) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 10:00 am:

Sylvie wrote:

"if for example the CJB DNA winds up matching with say Marshall or Ted K or even Kane, t wouldn't we be pretty sure then of Z's identity?"

The answer to this question is somewhat paradoxical. If the Riverside DNA matches that of one of the prime suspects then yes, we can (probably) safely say that Zodiac has been identified. But only because this would be much more than mere coincidence. On the other hand, if no match is found among the prime suspects, then I would have to say that CJB simply wasn't a victim of Zodiac. I know there are those who will shred this line of reasoning to pieces but, in my mind at least, both scenarios are true.

Scott

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-20-191.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.20.191) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 11:00 am:

Ray:

"Suspect for being the killer of CJB, primarily. But also for the known Z crimes as a result of this suspicion, because he was a Z suspect in Vallejo." Bingo. There's your circularity.

Hey, I never said "misdirected, irrelevant . . . stupid, or even offensive."

Scott & Jake:

You're batting 1,000 in this thread.

Sylvie:

"look at it this way if for example the CJB DNA winds up matching with say Marshall or Ted K or even Kane, wouldn't we be pretty sure then of Z's identity?"

Yup. Bert.

pH

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-mtc-ta011.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.105.21) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 11:12 am:

Eduard,
Maybe my eyesight is not as good as yours but I cannot see where that crime scene photo shows the watch as being unbroken, looks more to me like the face is shoved in the dirt and we are looking at the two ends. NO? Maybe?

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-mtc-ta011.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.105.21) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 11:26 am:

BTW Peter H: your question to Tom as to whether or not CJB was a Zodiac victim is silly, do you really think he would include a whole section on her and connect Allen to her in the ALA file if he did not think she was a Z victim? It's like --DUH.
Furthermore, how would you know there were not "a whole lot more down there" -- what were you his sidekick? I'm pretty sure you were not there so who are you to say?

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-20-191.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.20.191) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 12:00 pm:

Sylvie:

1. It may be "like --DUH" to you, but then so much is, isn't it? As far as I can tell, Tom's goal, which he largely achieves, is to lay out all the reasons why anyone thinks of a particular victim or suspect as Z connected, but he keeps his own analysis -- as far as conclusions go -- pretty close to the vest. To my knowledge, Tom has not once stated on this board or this site "I believe ALA was the Zodiac" or words to that effect. He lays out a pretty good factual case for why ALA is considered the the best suspect -- not why it definitively proves him responsible -- one that is difficult to refute objectively. Same with CJB -- why she is considered a possible. Note that he groups CJB with KJ and DL, BTW, not with LHR, BRS, LB and PH.

So, sure, we can see objectively that Tom sees ALA as the best (of a bad or nonexistent lot) suspect for CJB, but we really don't see his actual opinion or analysis of why CJB is a Z-job, or an ALA job. Lining up the evidence is not connecting the dots. I don't think these dots do connect and I would like to see someone with Tom's comprehensive knowledge of the case do it.

Of course I'm still waiting for that on LB, too, which should be a much easier task, so I don't expect an answer anytime soon. That doesn't keep any of us from goading a little now, does it? Look at all the times Tom has asked for something comprehensive (and comprehensible) from Sandy. Big difference is, I think Tom can lay out a detailed, concise theory of the whole case. Not a history, a theory. He has laid out the body of evidence quite well: I'd just like to see him put it together, especially certain pieces of it.

2. Uh . . . I am pretty sure I was there. (Course, it was the sixties). But if there were any more of them there, even possibly Z-connected, we all would have heard about them. There were plenty of them very much like CJB all over SoCal, but none that show up on anyone's Z-radar.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldfbg.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.189.112) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 12:04 pm:

Scott Bullock wants to know -

"How did you come to that conclusion? If CJB wasn't murdered by Zodiac then exactly what possibility is being narrowed? That ALA wasn't Zodiac? Are you saying that if the DNA from Riverside doesn't match ALA's DNA then he wasn't Zodiac? I think you know that doesn't stand to reason. This is exactly why I feel we should be concentrating our efforts, first and foremost, on the known Zodiac crimes."

and

"The typewriter seized from ALA's home had a different typeset than that used to write the Riverside letters. The knife in question was probably used at Lake Berryessa, not in Riverside. Again, if ALA's DNA profile doesn't match the DNA from Riverside, that doesn't mean ALA wasn't the Zodiac, but rather that ALA didn't murder CJB."

That was not my conclusion. I guess I should explain it a little better. The only way we would be sure that CJB was not murdered by Zodiac would be if we could prove who Zodiac really was and that his DNA did not match the Riverside sample. But we can't achieve this with just one test on one item of evidence. That is why I am saying we need to test everything, not just the things we think we are sure about. That's what really gets my goat. There is an investigation here, and people are saying things like, "Well, we don't need to test this for that, because we believe something else." Nonsense.

The investigation should proceed as follows:
Clear the mind of all pre-conceived notions one might have about the case. Look at everything as a possibility. Use modern forensic techniques and the concepts of both inclusion and exclusion. Disregard any internal department agendas, jealousies, egos, perceptions, or thoughts of career advancement or hinderance. Ignore jurisdictional pettiness and issues of credit for solving the case or blame for not solving the case. Get past any inter-departmental rivalries which may be impeding cooperation. This can be done completely free of embarrasment. A 30-year-old murder case needs to be resolved by whatever means for the sake of the victims and their families. Appeal to state investigative agencies as well as the FBI for assistance in performing and/or reperforming forensic examinations using the most modern equipment, the latest techniques and the most skilled and practiced technicians, regardless of what tests have already been performed on what by whom. The vast majority of tests which I advocate have not been done at all. I know some of you don't think they are warranted. From my point of view, it's like saying "We're not sure whether the victim (in some example crime) was killed at his home or elsewhere. But until we are sure, we're going to hold off on Luminol tests at his home and office." For lack of a better word, it's farm-animal logic.

You see,
1) If we can show the knife recovered from Allen can be conclusively linked to LB then we can make Allen as Zodiac.
2) If we can match Allen to Riverside DNA then we can make him as the killer of CJB, but not necessarily the Zodiac.
3) If we can make Allen as Zodiac but rule him out w/ DNA for CJB, then we know CJB was not Z.
4) If we can match the knife to LB and Allen to Riverside DNA, then Z was Allen and Z did Bates.
5) If we can match the knife to Riverside, we can make Allen for CJB, but not as the probable Zodiac unless we had other evidence of that such as a typewriter match and/or a match of handwriting samples not provided under police duress.

The more tests we make, the more likely we can link up or disprove the triangle of Bates, Allen, and Zodiac.

Now as far as Z claiming Bates, if you want more than an indirect reference to "Riverside activity" as evidence I can understand that. There might be some doubt. Some doubt surely exists. I have doubts too about Riverside and have already said I think that one could go either way. All I am saying is that we need to continue to look into this. Why is everyone seemingly opposed to this?

As far as the typewriter goes, there is some uncertainty about the typewriter whether one wants to acknowledge it or not. Even if we're sure we're right about the typewriter, it doesn't damage the case to order a new test. After all, if it is the wrong model, it should fail the new test, right? Is someone afraid of the truth? Look at it this way: If, somewhere along the line, some agency conducted a forensic test and reached the wrong conclusion for it, and the investigation ground to a halt because of that, we could proceed in one of two ways. We could hold up the official report as the word of Jehovah in stone, thereby failing to take investigative steps that might have been taken had the result been different, leaving the case in purgatory. Or, since we have nothing else to do but opine, maybe think about things a little differently than we have in the past regardless of what we think we know. At worst, we can spend some time confirming what we believe to be true. At best, we can break the case wide open with a new discovery. Wouldn't that be terrible?

If someone can come up with other specific investigative activities pertinent only to confirmed Z cases, I'd love to hear about them. Those should obviously be explored also.

That's what cold case investigations are all about. Revisiting old evidence and old conclusions which have brought us to where we are in the investigation (stalled) that may in fact be something other than what they appear.

Ray

By Eduard (Eduard) (erasmuscollege.nl - 194.109.60.77) on Thursday, October 11, 2001 - 12:47 pm:

Sylvie,

The two ends are curled up, if it was broken on of the ends would have been flat on the ground.

Eduard

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb7a4a5.ipt.aol.com - 172.183.164.165) on Friday, October 12, 2001 - 01:06 am:

Peter H, without proof that a call was placed to the Riverside police on October 30th, 1966, I'd have to say the odds are Bates was killed by someone other than Zodiac. If the call occurred, however, she was probably a Zodiac victim.

The alleged call is definitely the key, but RPD claims they have no evidence of one. A careful read of the confession letter indicates the call was to the newspaper, however...and they are also oblivious. It could go either way.

I believe Bates could have been an early Zodiac victim, or an unrelated victim that Zodiac learned of from the newspapers and other sources.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-19-183.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.19.183) on Friday, October 12, 2001 - 10:24 am:

Tom:

Thanks for your input. Good point on the nature of the "call to you" meaning the paper, not the police. A read of the letter indicates two other interesting things about the call: first, that it could have been made at any time, either before or after the CJB killing. Second, that it differed from Z's other calls, in that both of those claimed credit for them rather than "warning" of anything.

By Lapumo (Lapumo) (p116.as1.clonmel1.eircom.net - 159.134.150.116) on Friday, October 12, 2001 - 01:26 pm:

Not that it changes anything as far as opinions
go in this particular case,however I find it strange Tom (maybe strange is the wrong word)that
your opinion would be swayed by a phone call.This could have been Zodiac's first "outing". Another point,perhaps,is that it was similar in ways to the Stine killing,in that he had to get out of the area fast and did not feel confident enough to risk the call!
Just a thought

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-3.linkline.com - 64.30.217.3) on Saturday, October 13, 2001 - 03:18 pm:

"Yes,I did make that call to you[police and/or Enterprise]ALSO."[EMP mine].Now, did the writer,which I think was the young Zodiac,mean he made a call to the paper AND the police as he writes"also",or was it both places, because at the bottom of the letter we read"CC.CHIEF OF POLICE ENTERPRISE."The Riverside papers do mention crank calls.
Incidentally, I see this as a mark of identification with Zodiac,who also sent multiple,almost identical letters to the newspapers in N.CA some three years later(it was some three years later Z broke his silence after a spate of missives in '71 to when he wrote the papers in '74).The writer sent three letters or notes to the police,Mr.Bates(now deceased)and the paper in Riverside in '67.Again, just like Zodiac sending those triplicate letters in July of '69.
Just the fact of a letter being sent to Riverside relating to a claimed homicide is the same trait of the later writer called the Zodiac.Captain Cross' statement that the Zodiac would have taken credit for the Bates killing if it would have been his doing is refuted by four communications -all to Riverside, and all related to Bates!And let's not forget the Z '71 letter claiming responsibility for the Bates murder.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-3.linkline.com - 64.30.217.3) on Saturday, October 13, 2001 - 03:51 pm:

I covered the stalking issue-along with some astute posters-some time ago.See our posts.
Just looking at the '66 letter it says"I AM STALKING YOUR GIRLS NOW,"certainly indicates that the writer-whom I affirm is Zodiac-though unnamed at that early period,was familiar with 'stalking,' or that his mind dwelt on predator behavior.See his remarks ,early in the letter, about 'watching',at least,two young women and warning the people about their women being 'fair game.'
The writer says he was in the library 'waiting' for the right time to go out and approach Bates.This indicates stalking or following (he writes that he FOLLOWED HER OUT).He MUST have been aware of her before this time(10/30/66) as he writes that Bates gave him "BRUSH OFFS (pl.).When putting the whole case together -and not a single incident -one comes to the conclusion that young Z lived in the area.The detectives concluded that "Zodiac had close ties to Riverside."
The whole scene does not seem like a visitor to the area engaging in a spur of the moment hit that night.If the rh poem is to be taken in its classical Z sense then he did have plans for a future kill.The typed letter was not sent until Nov. of '66 showing he was still about the area as there were NO postmarks or stamps-"hand carried"by the Zostman!Those'67 notes show a close watch of the local Bates case.See under Nikki Benedict also.See posts.

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-wp081.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.201.211) on Saturday, October 13, 2001 - 07:07 pm:

I agree Howard with all of the above, and as with most stalking situations his smiling face would have been somewhat familiar to her as she had to have conversed with him for some time and she obviously trusted him enough to go walking off with him (no sign of an initial struggle). As was well known by those who knew her she was petrified of the dark and it was very dark in that alley, she would NEVER have gone willingly along with a complete unknown.
In the confession letter we see many Zodiacisms - the use of humans as "game" for example.
TomV, if the phone call is very pertinent to the Z as CJB killer scenario, then does not just the fact that he "claimed" to have made the call speak as loud as whether or not he actually did? I mean he obviously sees hinself as a make-a-phone-call-after-the-murder kind of guy.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-44.linkline.com - 64.30.217.44) on Sunday, October 14, 2001 - 03:11 am:

I mean no stamps.My 10/13/01 post.Sorry.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx2-9.linkline.com - 64.30.218.9) on Monday, October 15, 2001 - 01:35 am:

Just the fact that the 11/29/66 letter writer-and killer of CJB(see my old posts)and whom I firmly believe to be the young Zodiac -although unnamed i.e. Zodiac,at this point in his career as a serial murderer,mentions that he 'called' the police and/or the Enterprise.
This,at the very least, shows mind set or that he had calling some form of authority on his mind.
Zodiac did not place a call after 12/20/68-at least that we know of,but did call the VPD on 7/5/69.A call to NPD after LB was made, but no call-that we know of-was given after S.F.87.
Z may have called OPD and /or the Palo Alto Times and possibly the FBI,etc.,so the letter writer of '66 certainly had "call" on his mind-it was part and parcel of his thinking..
Since Z never called a news office(except for TPAT?),that we know about,and that the highest form of authority, at least in his view,was the PD;then the writer could have referred to the RPD in that '66 letter."Crank calls" were mentioned in the papers.
I do not trust any of RPD'denials,which includes "no calls"; I have observed them too long and first hand to be taken in by their statements.

By Eduard (Eduard) (erasmuscollege.nl - 194.109.60.77) on Monday, October 15, 2001 - 06:49 am:

RayN,

About Mathematics....
The change of someone blaming an innocent man for Zodiac's crimes is much bigger than the change that someone comes up with the real Zodiac's ID.

Just a thought,

Eduard

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldeen.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.185.215) on Monday, October 15, 2001 - 11:28 am:

Eduard,
I couldn't agree with you more. As I have said, I don't think anyone can be blamed or tried on here solely on the basis of circumstantial "evidence". My whole effort on this thread has been to attempt to provide some meaningful corroboration for an argument that had already been put forth in earlier posts. I have probably failed in my attempt, but notwithstanding this, I remain impressed by certain aspects of the mathematical odds of a murder suspect being confirmed in the area of a murder which may be the work of the same perpetrator. The main effect this has on me is to strengthen my resolve to try to prove the theory by eliminating or confirming the suspect with forensic evidence (which in this case is available). Apparently, this is not a priority for the police and I have given my thoughts on possible motives for this on other posts.

Ray

By Eduard (Eduard) (erasmuscollege.nl - 194.109.60.77) on Tuesday, October 16, 2001 - 02:21 am:

Ray,

You are right, but what would happen if you would use mathematical odds for an other suspect than ALA ?

Eduard

P.S. I am not bashing at you but in order to eliminate other possibilities I think you must try your theory on other suspects. If they have the same odds than ALA your theory is questionable.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldfpj.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.191.51) on Tuesday, October 16, 2001 - 05:42 pm:

Not at all, that's a fair question. I think it would be easy to predict that the odds against any one person chosen at random would be in a city where he doesn't live (chosen at random) at any given time would be quite high. Therefore, the odds that might be generated for other suspects would presumably be at least similar to those for ALA, but I don't think that necessarily negates my theory. Remember, Allen was both placed in Riverside around the time of the murder, and is a Z suspect! That is the cornerstone of the theory! Only when we can also place any of the other known suspects in R in the same time frame can my theory be proven faulty by failure to properly discriminate, IMHO.

Basically, I realize the face value of my theory argues that any non-Riverside resident who was there could be Z, and that this only holds true if Z didn't live in Riverside, and the numbers I generated were based on the speculative premise that he was in fact from Vallejo. If my premise upon which I based my analysis can be shown to be incorrect by factual evidence, my numbers are totally meaningless. I freely acknowledge this. I also know that even if my premise happens to be correct, my analysis is still hardly a showstopper, because the odds I came up with are not sufficently significant. They worked out to 63 in 11,375 (thank you pH) which means since ALA was in Riverside he has roughly 1 chance in 180 that Allen was Z (if CJB was a Z-job, another aspect of my premise.) My only assertion is that that's still way better than the 1 in 11,375 he would have had if we couldn't put him in Riverside.

What still impresses me about about Allen is that in addition to the 1 in 180:

1) He is a Z suspect who fits many aspects of the profile (age, lived alone, etc.)
2) Other factors previously mentioned, all of which tend to better his odds (over and above the 1:180) of being Z by some amount which we are not able to calculate.

So, the numbers when taken alone are not really too convincing, but when combined with other information certainly make me want to focus my investigation on Allen (e.g. DNA comparisons, typewriter and knife analysis). On that basis, I find ALA a very strong candidate and stand by the numbers. On the other hand, I am not accusing him of anything...yet.

Of course, I am aware that there are those who think my theory is a very leaky boat! I know that it is only as strong as the premises I based it on, so its value in that regard is truly unknown. To those I only say that's a pretty weak excuse for not continuing to investigate the possibilities. Some only seem to want to go where they think the evidence leads, the standard investigative thinking. We have to consider where this standard thinking has gotten the case, though. If we remain open-minded and are willing to also go places where the evidence might lead, we may well make an astounding leap in the case. It's my opinion, and it's worth at most 2 cents.

P.S. In order to counter the "day late" dissenters, I personally don't feel it matters here if it was a day late or not. I maintain the odds I used allow for this, as I have stated in a previous post on this thread. I know we would have to place him there on the day of the crime in order to be useful evidence in court, but the purpose of my numerical method was to focus an investigation not obtain a conviction, so preponderance of evidence becomes controlling, not reasonable doubt. In other words, I feel that a day's difference is quibbling in this instance.

It's a thought provoking case, isn't it?

Ray

By Howard Davis (Howard) (dsl-gte-10407-2.linkline.com - 64.30.209.40) on Tuesday, October 16, 2001 - 06:22 pm:

Eduard,
You are correct.I can come up with some 40+ points that seen beyond the Law Of Chance -with comparisons to other suspects-in relation to my suspect.
What are the "odds" of someone from a small town in TN moving to CA and finding a job in the 60's in Lake Tahoe,scene of the Lass abduction- suspected by some,including myself,of it being a Z strike/postcard done/sent in '70?
If we put a long time resident of ,say Vallejo(or anywhere in the Bay Area),in LT,even for brief periods,it lowers the odds as someone living in the N Bay Area would most likely hear about LT and go there.I did as I lived in the Bay Area.

What odds do we have for this same TN guy going to live in Riverside,not just visiting ,but living there and probably staying at the Y which was just a short distance from RCC, and even Ramona High?
According to detectives Bruce Davis,"drops out November '66, becoming an transient undergrounder."This is the same month and year (11/29/66)that the writer,I believe the killer,sent the typed Confession letter to the RPD and the Enterprise.
A real odds maker.Davis flies to Great Britain in '63-the watch ripped off the killers(7"BD same)wrist in '66 came from a PX in,yep, GB!Wow-what "odds"!

Davis is in Berkeley-not so great if one lived in the Bay Area,but here is someone from that small TN town (which is right near Deer Lodge, which harks back to LB-the only other town so named in U.S.-see my posts)in a city that is close to Vallejo/Benicia scene of the 12/20/68 Zodiac attack.He could have been in Riverside or L.A., where he spent time.

He then flies to England(English expressions,including Beatles song reference to Blue Meannie,etc.in Z missives-"odds" again-from TN ,Southern expressions seen in Z letters-"odds") at the end of Dec.'68.
No Z activity or letter-gone from area zpronto?

Davis comes back('man from out of the state' comes back to follow Ferrin)and Z crime in Vallejo.
Darlens sister sees a man in a car that she told me looked "identical" to Davis "arguing" with Darlene just prior to her murder(see my posts).Good 'odds',as she could have seen an entirely different looking man ,including age,color of hair,build,etc.

I am at work now.I could go on as it gets deeper concerning those "odds"-much more than the 40 I stated,but I must stop There are a ton more -and more and...

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldcrf.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.179.111) on Tuesday, October 16, 2001 - 06:46 pm:

Howard:

See how simple it is?
It is entirely possible that Bruce Davis killed Bates based in part on the circumstantial evidence you cite. For this reason, Davis should also be considered a suspect in her murder and investigated (i.e. compared to samples when/if possible). What frustrates me is when people don't want the investigation to go down a certain road because it doesn't jibe with their take on things. The "there's no conclusive evidence of that" crowd. These people tend to allow no new possiblities to be introduced, which is exactly what are needed!
This was my main reason for starting this thread...

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-69.linkline.com - 64.30.217.69) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 01:30 am:

Ray,
I agree with you-the case and victims are what really matter-not any particular person and all possibilities must be looked at and debated as any one theory can be wrong-including mine.

We must stay open and keep the mental 'filters' down to a minimum or we can go astray.

After receiving an e mail this evening I feel I must leave the Board.I will sorely miss it.Even though I have never met (except Tom)most of the people that post ,I can truly say I feel respect and have a deep admiration for everyone-yes, even the ones I don't always agree with.This is what America is all about-freedom of speech and thought even if we personally don't agree.This complicated case is no different.
This site is the premier Zodiac information center(other sites ,of course, have great value too) and I deeply respect Tom for the hard diligent work he has done -even better than the police and FBI combined!
This is ,and rightfully so, his Board and we all must respect that,as I have repeatedly stated.I do get a little free spirited I admit!Keep up the good posting and work and respect the Board.

By Oddball (Oddball) (slip-32-103-46-98.al.us.prserv.net - 32.103.46.98) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 03:50 am:

I'm very sorry to see you go, Howard. Your posts are among the most interesting and thought-provoking here on the board. I've always been deeply appreciative of your courtesy, as well...Hope you can return someday!

Oddball

By Eduard (Eduard) (erasmuscollege.nl - 194.109.60.77) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 05:01 am:

Howard and RayN,

You both are right, at this point we must keep all possibilities open towards Zodiac's ID.
For example, if a suspect was questioned by the police that doesn't mean he was the Zodiac.
It could well be Zodiac was never questioned by the police at all.

Trouble with having a lot of possibilities is that it can "cloud" the research.
There is so much info throughout the internet on this case, people can get lost in it.

Howard, I hope that E-mail you got wasn't a threat? It would be a pity to loose you because you have showed in the past that you post interesting thoughts about the subject.

Eduard
"The Zodiac-Batman Connection"

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-19-220.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.19.220) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 08:21 am:

I mistakenly posted the following to another thread. I meant it to go here, although it applies to Bookworm's take on coincidental connections as well:

Could someone, anyone, with a real background in statistics and logic please jump in here and light a candle in this darkness?

Howard: Also sorry to see you go.

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb700a1.ipt.aol.com - 172.183.0.161) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 11:24 am:

Howard got an e-mail from someone claiming to be me. The matter with Howard has been cleared up, he's not going anywhere.

If anyone gets a threatening or otherwise weird e-mail from someone claiming to be Tom Voigt, please disregard it.

By EviI (Evii) (spider-wo064.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.200.49) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 01:39 pm:

Hello,
Good to see that whole thing cleared up. How'd that happen though, Tom? Were you hacked? I've gotta wonder who would hack this Board, if so - maybe an aspiring Z copycat? Or Z himself, if he's still alive?
Craig Stallone

By Esau (Esau) (proxy1-external.scrmnt1.ca.home.com - 24.4.254.112) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 09:22 pm:

Wow Tom, why would anyone have a vendetta against YOU of all people? (just kidding). If anyone gets an e-mail like the one I saw you can contact their system administrator. Most ISP's will give a warning to the culprit and let you know their primary e-mail address.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-37.linkline.com - 64.30.217.37) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 11:16 pm:

I am here.My earlier post must have gotten deleted by mistake.Thanx for all the posts and concern.The case is our focus.It is exciting to be a part of it all!

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acb79f02.ipt.aol.com - 172.183.159.2) on Wednesday, October 17, 2001 - 11:35 pm:

OK, now we can get back to
"Mathematics Swings the Needle Strongly Towards
Allen".

By Ed N (Ed_N) (tcache-mtc-tj01.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.106.66) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 12:15 am:

Sylvie: in reference to your post on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 02:54 pm, where you mention:

Others like TedK, Penn (emphasis mine) and Kane could have had a reason to be staying there.

Penn admitted that he was on leave in California during the first half of October 1966 (Times 17, p. 29). He was stationed at Fort Sill, OK, and, in his own words:

When the Riverside murder took place, I was in charge of preparing my unit's Morning Report, which accounts for the whereabouts and duty status of everyone in the unit. It would not have been hard for me to falsify an entry. (italics mine)

He then claims that "[i]t would not have been too difficult" to have slipped away to March AFB on a hop for a three-day pass, "which would not even have been reflected on the Morning Report, anyway". In other words, he implicates himself, then exonerates himself by claiming that

The fingerprints, of course, were definitive and conclusive.

That's problematic at best, since we know that Mel Nicolai stated back in the 1970's in Special Report: Zodiac Homicides, p. 7:

Pending receipt of any additional evidence, handprinting (emphasis mine) is the most positive method of identification or elimination of suspects.

Fingerprints don't even enter the equation as far as that is concerned. In any case, I'd be curious to see how Penn et. al. measures up mathematically versus Allen.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (122.philadelphia01rh.15.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.16.122) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 01:15 am:

I believe if you're going to do mathematics you've got to start with five criteria: (1) that the perpetrator was a caucasian; (2) that he was a male; (3) that he was sexually frustrated to the point where it became a motivation for violence; (4) that he had proximity to the crime scenes; and (5) that his primary criminal signature was murder for the sake of widespread public recognition. The actual percentages of persons meeting those criteria may be hard to determine, but I'd reckon them as (1) roughly 80 percent; (2) fifty percent; (3) five percent (very conservatively; it's probably far smaller); (4) anyone's guess, but say twenty percent; and (5) a tiny, tiny little fraction, probably not even one in a million, or .0001 percent.

If you work out the percentages on just the first four criteria and start with a total population of 250,000,000 persons living in the United States, you get a figure of 1,000,000 white men who might fall into the category of viable Zodiac suspects. If you add the last criterion, the number drops to one.

Allen does very well when it comes to proximity, but even if we assume (and it's not really very obvious) that point (3) applied to him, he's still only a member of the 1,000,000 to whom the first four criteria would apply.

By Ed N (Ed_N) (aca63289.ipt.aol.com - 172.166.50.137) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 03:23 am:

If I'm not mistaken, I believe that Vallejo's population in the late 1960's was approximately 71,000. I seem to recall reading that somewhere, perhaps during a perusal of old newspapers on microfilm.

While I'm not certain about points 3 and 5 (at least, #5 was not something he set out to do initially, but rather it eventually became his motive for murder; besides, how would one know if that criterion would apply to any suspect until he was actually caught and confessed?), we might add (6) that Z had some degree of education beyond high school; and (7) he had familiarity with the military and/or police (although this seems to be debatable for some).

The odds for (6), I have no clue, but it might be fair to assign a 20% chance. For (7), perhaps 20% would be a good number also.

By Sylvie (Sylvie14) (spider-tn042.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.207.62) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 09:02 am:

Doug, the U.S. population in 1966 wasn't that high, was it?
I would agree with your 5 and Ed's additional 2 points, however I would add an 8th point that CJB must have had some degree of familiarity with the perp.
We have that nasty little problem of her obviously having a long conversation with her killer, and no sign of any struggle until the place of death. No doubt one reason why RPD was so sure of Barnett.
I agree with PeterH that I find CJB and LB the most interesting parts of this case, but unlike Peter I believe them both to be the work of Zodiac.

By Ed N (Ed_N) (ac850ac0.ipt.aol.com - 172.133.10.192) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 11:05 am:

Sylvie: while it once again seems probable the CJB was indeed murdered by Z, her familiarity with her killer might be like #5, that is, an unknown quantity until such time as the perp is apprehended and confesses. We might alter #8 slightly to reflect that Z had ties to Riverside, which would be easier to establish regarding a suspect than a personal relationship that family or friends might be totally unaware of.

#9, now that I think of it, was that, in 1969, Z was between 25 and 45 years of age. That should narrow the number of suspects in the population pool considerably. What the typical percentage would be in the age group, however, I wouldn't know. Anyone?

If we go with an estimated population of 71,000 (I'll have to see if I can find the source for that, I'm sure that's what it was), the number of WMV's would be 12,425.71, or, for the sake of argument, 12,426.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldedc.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.185.172) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 05:21 pm:

Very glad you are still here, Howard.

Douglas:
I agree with what you present, also. You have to admit it's not fair to the concept to use the population of the whole US! But you are saying basically that there is a small group out of a big group. If our suspect is in the small group, and we can make that small group even smaller by taking into account age ranges, etc, and our suspect remains in the group while we reduce it, things begin to take on a certain feel, don't they?

BTW, check this page out. Look under Economics & Demographics, Population & Income. I used this site to extrapolate data for 1966.

Vallejo Demographics Info

Ray

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldc6c.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.176.204) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 06:17 pm:

For the sake of simplicity and to affirmitively stack the deck in Allen's favor, I did not take an age range into account in my original analysis. If we assumed that the average age one lived to in the 1960's was 75 and that the population had a fairly even distribution (just for purposes of getting a handle on how this might effect numbers) we could say that 25-45 years of age is a 20 year spread. 20 years is 27% of 75 years. Therefore,

My numbers would bring the suspect pool down to:
11,375 x .27 = 3071

According to my formulas described above, there should be between 3 and 31 white males from Vallejo in Riverside around the time CJB died. The middle number of this group is 17 giving odds of 17 in 11,375 or 669:1 against Allen being in Riverside by pure chance.

Ed's numbers look like this:
12,426 x .27 = 3355

Giving between 4 and 34 such subjects in question.
Median is 19 for odds of 654:1 against.

Common sense tells me that since not all adults are married with kids, and since not all adults make it to 75, the actual percentage would be somewhat higher than 27%. Again, we are just playing around with numbers. See how a pretty big change in population shifts the numbers, but still largely makes the same statement? From here, we haven't even looked at percentages for the rest of the items in our list. Each additional commonality is one more mathematical nail. If you don't think this warrants at least a raised eyebrow, I don't know what to say. I pesonally feel that CJB could go any one of a number of ways, but let's just say I can't understand how anyone still could think we don't want to do a test that would definitively put Allen either at the crime scene or not at the crime scene, (regardless of the size of his wrists)!

Ray

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (216.philadelphia08rh.15.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.30.216) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 07:22 pm:

Ray, I began with the population of the U.S., but qualified it by including as a criterion those individuals with proximity to the crime scenes. I think you could begin with a figure such as the population of northern California and get pretty much the same results.

I also assume that any killer of Zodiac's "stature" (if I may be so bold as to call it that) would eventually kill again, and for the same reasons. However, looking over the past 30+ years I see few killers who have committed murder in association with a drive for publicity.

By Ed N (Ed_N) (ac8b36e7.ipt.aol.com - 172.139.54.231) on Thursday, October 18, 2001 - 09:42 pm:

I think I remember now where I saw that figure of 71,000... on July 31st, 1969, a 700 pound bronze plaque was unveiled on Hunter Hill (the same place where the unnamed patrolman first came face-to-face with "Andrew Todd Walker" some eight months later in April 1970 (Zodiac, p. 186)), which officially started the construction of the rest area there. The story "Hunter Hill Project Officially Dedicated" appeared on the front page of the Vallejo Times-Herald on August 1st, along with pics of the dignitaries who were there, one of which was mayor Florence E. Douglas (also referenced in Zodiac, pp. 148-149). Thus, it seems that 71,000 was the official population of Vallejo in 1969, but I'd have to drive out there to check it out again just to be certain.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-18-219.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.18.219) on Friday, October 19, 2001 - 12:21 pm:

I suppose it would be futile to renew my plea that someone with at least a rudimentary background in applied statistics be consulted on this approach.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-129.linkline.com - 64.30.217.129) on Monday, October 22, 2001 - 12:31 am:

I am not a numbers buff,but how does facial/bodily features,hair color/style,/texture,voice,age,manner of walk,clothes,writing style,letter info clues,etc.,fit regarding everyone's statistical analysis?
I fully realize that if the perp did use a good 'disguise' as he said in a letter 11/9/69 and engaged in other anti detection modifications all of this would affect my question and any true factual statistical outcome regarding the real Zodiac killer.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-154-18-219.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.154.18.219) on Monday, October 22, 2001 - 08:46 am:

Howard:

For a related discussion, see my new thread "By the numbers, to the letter". But the short answer is that multivariate analysis is extremely complex and I would think rare in criminal prosecutions. Look at my DNA example: one variable, one data point perfectly random and huge control. Simple. fingerprints would be another example. You need ten points of comparison precisely because of the statistics of random occurrance of similarities. Anything more complex than that (meaning more variables) I don't think lends itself to mathematical analysis. that's why we have phrases like "reasonable doubt" rather than "statistical certainty" in jury instructions.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (dsl-gte-10407-2.linkline.com - 64.30.209.40) on Monday, October 22, 2001 - 02:39 pm:

Peter,
Read it.Many thanks.I know geographical analysis in relation to where a perp might be residing in a crime gride scenerio can be very accurate.
It's amazing how they are many times right on!
Of course,the killer who attacks in various locations some distance from his place of residence is a lot more complex to graph and pin point.Next to impossible.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (user-38ldf5t.dialup.mindspring.com - 209.86.188.189) on Tuesday, October 23, 2001 - 12:43 am:

Howard:

Since I couldn't possibly take all these things into account, I simply ignored them, effectively taking more people into the pool. The more information one has, the smaller one can make the pool. After all, if you had all the information, you could reduce the pool to 1! All I tried to do was reduce the pool sufficiently for the purpose of showing Allen to be a viable suspect on that basis. However, that was before I lost my crack pipe...

Ray

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (acadb9e3.ipt.aol.com - 172.173.185.227) on Tuesday, October 23, 2001 - 01:49 am:

If it makes you feel better Ray, I liked Allen's numbers even before I found your crack pipe.

By Juno (Juno) (ip-209-215-165-204.browardlibrary.org - 209.215.165.204) on Friday, October 24, 2003 - 11:06 am:

Ed N said:

Sylvie: in reference to your post on Monday, October 08, 2001 - 02:54 pm, where you mention:

Others like TedK, Penn (emphasis mine) and Kane could have had a reason to be staying there.

Penn admitted that he was on leave in California during the first half of October 1966 (Times 17, p. 29). He was stationed at Fort Sill, OK, and, in his own words:

When the Riverside murder took place, I was in charge of preparing my unit's Morning Report, which accounts for the whereabouts and duty status of everyone in the unit. It would not have been hard for me to falsify an entry. (italics mine)

He then claims that "[i]t would not have been too difficult" to have slipped away to March AFB on a hop for a three-day pass, "which would not even have been reflected on the Morning Report, anyway". In other words, he implicates himself, then exonerates himself by claiming that

The fingerprints, of course, were definitive and conclusive.

That's problematic at best, since we know that Mel Nicolai stated back in the 1970's in Special Report: Zodiac Homicides, p. 7:

Pending receipt of any additional evidence, handprinting (emphasis mine) is the most positive method of identification or elimination of suspects.

Fingerprints don't even enter the equation as far as that is concerned. In any case, I'd be curious to see how Penn et. al. measures up mathematically versus Allen.

Juno: agrees and would like to see more posts on Penn & Co.

By Alan Cabal (Alan_Cabal) (cache-rh01.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.252.161) on Friday, October 24, 2003 - 09:09 pm:

Penn remains a person of interest in this case.

By Anon (Anon) (adsl-64-170-192-100.dsl.snfc21.pacbell.net - 64.170.192.100) on Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 05:55 pm:

Ray,

Couldn't agree with you more! Too many facts fit your theory. Add 'em all up and you have ALA guilty. Not all a giant coincidence as some would assert.

Ask yourself WHY all these facts would point to ALA if he were innocent. I've heard no theory that seeks to explain the fact why he sits in the middle of a number of busy intersections in this case. Certainly not a railroaded defendant. The police did all they could to NOT charge the guy IMO; nobody was 'out to get' ALA. And yet he just keeps popping up again and again...

I'll reiterate it: if a strong prosecutor had tried him, he would have been convicted. So I believe. And furthermore, I think he would have cracked before trial, and given details that would have proved his guilt. He did way too much talking, smart defendants who go to trial and win shut up from the first contact with law-enforcement. Why they didn't put more pressure on the guy, I'll never know.

A guy like him, having MOLESTED children on several occasions, you put as much pressure on him as you can. Let him feel the weight of a murder trial or two or four when you have facts like these. He would have buckled and given up the goods (shown where he hid stuff, etc).

Keep it up!

Anon

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-141-157-187-180.bos.east.verizon.net - 141.157.187.180) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 01:58 pm:

Anon:

" I've heard no theory that seeks to explain the fact why he sits in the middle of a number of busy intersections in this case."

The reason you have never heard a theory as to "why he sits in the ... intersections" is because that's a meaningless abstraction of the relation of the evidence to ALA.

"Ask yourself WHY all these facts would point to ALA if he were innocent." Now that is a more meaningful framing of the issue.

If you would care

(1) to state all the facts that you believe can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt and

(2) explain why the only reasonable explanation for those facts is ALa's guilt.

Then I would be happy to

1) raise a reasonable deoubt as to anny of your facts I tink are susceptible, and

2) provide perfectly reasonable explanations for the rest

By Anon (Anon) (adsl-64-170-192-100.dsl.snfc21.pacbell.net - 64.170.192.100) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 07:43 pm:

Peter,

Do your own research. I'm sure you've heard of ALA. I'm sure you've read a thing or two about why people think he's the guy. Head over to the ALA page on this site... Start there. On the other hand, please don't.

We've been through this before, and my opinion of you is the same as Ray's... You'd much rather try to loose the big picture by arguing every little point ad nauseum, and bore us to TEARS, than propose any positive theory of the case. You wanna play defense lawyer, fine, but learn how real defense lawyers do it before you try, ok? Don't try this at home...

Arguing a case with a REAL criminal trail lawyer looks NOTHING like what you try to do here, and for obvious reasons: they are skilled professionals. They are fun to talk with. Fun to argue with. They usually come up with a theory or two of their own. Witness the Scott Peterson defense. Or the OJ defense. It may make you crazy to talk to them and see what they are tying to do, but it PULLS YOU IN, and the discussions are passionate. You, on the other hand, argue EVERYTHING, seemingly at random. No theory of the case, no explanations, no agreeing with some things but offering an alternate explanation, nothing...

It is dull, repetitive, and ineffective. You may be persuasive to people who already agree with you, but you will not win ANYONE over in a courtroom or board with this nonsense.

I have buddies who I can argue over cases like this HOURS. You, on the other hand, seem to try everyone's patience within a few posts... You just have to learn how to have productive arguments and how to build relationships with people by relating to their ideas. Have you noticed how short people are with you on the board here? Why do you think that is? I'm sure in your head you think it is because you are so smart and people just HATE to see how smart you are. Hopefully you'll exercise some of your maniacal logic skills and find another answer :)

Gee, you'd be happy to raise reasonable doubts as to ANY of my facts? Wow, I'm falttered! THE PeterH will argue ALL of my points? Every little one of them? Each date, name, and crime report?Wow. Is it any wonder you draw the reactions you do, over and over, from SO MANY PEOPLE?

Rather than trying to play the part of the gadfly, how about staying out unless you have something positive to contribute? Try as hard as you can to find SOMETHING you like in a post of someone you disagree with and expound on it for a change.

Yeah... Argue everything. Keep arguing the little points. Don't ever stop. Obfuscate on EVERYTHING. You are winning us over massive skills, Perry Mason. Keep doing sentence-by-sentence counter points on a freaking discussion board...

Amazing...


Anon

By Mike_Cole (Mike_Cole) (12-224-40-230.client.attbi.com - 12.224.40.230) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 02:27 am:

Anon,

Although I'm not completely familiar with all other postings by Peter, I will point out that his questions are reasonable and they were asked in a reasonably polite manner. When you make broad statements like (1) ALA is guilty, (2) he would have been convicted, & (3) he would have confessed, you should expect someone to engage in a discussion/debate with you.

I, for one, am not interested in reading long personal diatribes such as the one you posted.

By Alan Cabal (Alan_Cabal) (cache-dk01.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.209.5) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 08:51 am:

Mike Cole speaks for me on this. Who says everybody has to have a theory? At no point have I seen any evidence of obfuscation in any of Peter's posts, nor do I perceive any malice in his critiques. I could float a theory that Santa Claus is the Zodiac (the Ramseys have implicated him in their case, along with "some Puerto Rican guy"). Not all theories are equal, and there is nothing even resembling an air-tight theory in this case.

In the absence of new evidence, this case will remain unsolved. ALA is the obvious suspect, but red herrings abound in these waters. Peter H happens to have a talent for critique. Doug Oswell and Howard Davis are both possessed of a talent for making initially unlikely theories sound plausible. There's no reason to get all huffy.

The hole in my own theory derives from Paul Castellano's famous remark that "three can keep a secret if two of them are dead."

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 10:30 am:

Thanks. Mike. But as Anon says, we have been through this before, and we always end up the same place: Anon would like to see a defense of a case that has never been presented. He criticizes me for not arguing the big picture, and I criticize him for not arguing any point at all. All in all, methinks the lady doth protest too much.

Referring generally to all the information about Allen is no substitute for stating just what the case against him is. The reason I put it that way is this: the body of information she refers to is just that: a body of allegations and evidence ranging from the incontrovertible to patently false. I have done all the research and analysis that Anon suggests, and I have a damn good grasp of a case against Allen. I just don't know what Anon's case is, and there is no point guessing. Every Allen supporter on this board has a different take on what the strongest case would be, and dam if I'm gonna answer em all! I have been asking literally for years to hear what this seasoned prosecutor thinks is the strongest case.

At least Ray in this thread makes an attempt to pick out the facts he would rely on and present his reasoning on them. His theory is full of holes, which I addressed a couple of years ago, but at least he set it out. Neither Anon, nor anyone else has done anything remotely as cogent much less present a deduction based on the questions I set out. Which by the way, may not be the way Anon and her trial lawyer buddies argue a case, but it is the way a trial judge instructs a jury in California on a circumstantial case.

(CALJIC 2.01. This instruction is called "Sufficiency of Circumstantial Evidence Generally. I can provide the whole thing if you like, or you can see it over under "I Could Convict Allen easily!)

Having said all this, I will summarize may case on Allen as follows. If you take all the facts supportable by evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, a reasonable inference might be drawn that ALA was Z. However, those facts point at least as strongly to a disturbed loser who like thousands of others came to a very low level of police attention, then teased and courted that attention as best he could, or dared. Things like teasing the cops with stories of killing chickens and tormenting poor old Don Cheney. He either pissed Cheney off to the extent that Cheney would say anything to have a shot at him, or he teased the poor confused slob by laying a half-assed version of "boy, I could be that Zodiac guy" on Cheney after the news was out but before Cheney was cognizant of it, if he ever was.

In any event, of all the supposed information on Allen, the only thing, if true, that makes it impossible to explain other than by ALA's guilt, is Cheney's story tat ALA knew the details of the Zodiac story before they were made public. Cheney's whole saga, however is so weak, however, as to raise far more than a reasonable doubt.

Everything else that is certain -- and I mean everything -- taken as a whole or piece by piece can just as reasonably be explained by Alan's innocence as his guilt. And to beat the convistion, all it has to be is reasonable. Not certain, not even more likely. Just reasonable.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 10:38 am:

Thanks, Alan, too. (You posted while I was composing). But now you have me intrigued with the Dead MAn's Secret Theory . . .

By Alan Cabal (Alan_Cabal) (cache-rh01.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.252.161) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 10:50 am:

I'd like to know more about the relationship between Penn & his suspect. There's some kind of back story there that Penn has very deliberately lied about. It aroused my suspicion a very long time ago. Penn seems to move around the Bay Area quite a bit.

By Juno (Juno) (ip-209-215-165-187.browardlibrary.org - 209.215.165.187) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 11:41 am:

He also seems able to pull information out of the air pertaining to his suspect. I need to read Times 17 again....

In the past i felt as if he was involved and wants credit, but does not want to go to prison, obviously.

On the other hand, I have always been interested in Marshall. That whole "wallace penny" section of "Zodiac" was great reading, although I think Tom said that most of those chapters were embellished.

Go to this link for the report. I believe this report was submitted by the same couple who introduced Graysmith to "wallace penny"

http://www.zodiackiller.com/messageboard/messages/17/900.html?MondayDecember1620020804pm

Tom--Did anyone besides Graysmith ever talk to "Wallace Penny?"

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (12-231-193-32.client.attbi.com - 12.231.193.32) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 11:56 am:

Juno: Surprise, surprise: The "Wallace Penny" character was an invention of the author, along with much of the truly suspicious stuff about Rick Marshall. Apparently that author wanted to work his girlfriend's name (Penny Wallace) into the book and felt that was an appropriate way.

Before this turns into a discussion of Penn, O'Hare, Marshall or anyone else, Ray's initial post is a good one and it's been lost in all this arguing.

By Juno (Juno) (ip-209-215-165-204.browardlibrary.org - 209.215.165.204) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 12:17 pm:

I thought "Wallace Penny" was the person who informed the couple. Or did Graysmith make him up because he knew someone informed the couple, but was never introduced? At any rate--someone informed the couple. Any idea who it was?

Sorry for off-topic.

By J Eric Freedner (J_Eric) (dsc03-lai-ca-199-182-33-224.rasserver.net - 199.182.33.224) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 01:04 pm:

OK, then, getting back to Ray's original post, I believe there was one other person from Vallejo in Riverside on the date given. It's not really that hard of a probability thing. The information is somewhere within this very website. Think and you may come up with the name. And, yes, Ray, he could have (note I say could have) met all the criteria you set forth.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (66.227.204.206.bay.mi.chartermi.net - 66.227.204.206) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 03:26 pm:

Hmmm. Very interesting. This thread sits idle for two years. I thought we'd discussed it pretty thoroughly. Then someone haplessly steps on a landmine by agreeing with me.

Look folks, let me just reiterate, since quite a few seem to have reached conclusions about my post without actually reading it (either that or I can't write very well): I do not contend that I have done an unimpeachably proper analysis. I do not contend that any of this convicts Allen. I do not contend that it places only one person from Vallejo in Riverside. The only thing I contend is that my calculations have made me interested in Allen, interested in pursuing the Riverside/Zodiac connection. I posted this to see what other people thought. All I really got was a bunch of grief over it. That's fine. No problem. I tried to take the board's temperature on it, and my thermometer melted.

J Eric: What are you saying, exactly? That we shouldn't look at Allen unless we can prove there weren't one or two others? Explain the logic of that to me please. No, I take it back. Don't bother.

Critique is one thing. Being pathologically critical is another. Anon was simply attempting to snap Peter out of his "I'm smarter than everybody and I know more than everybody about everything and I feel better about myself when I make sure everybody at the board knows it" trance, or failing that, to at least make the board aware that critique is only useful if it takes the discussion in new directions. I would encourage the board to do what I no longer bother to do. Read Peter's posts. You'll catch on quickly. For all his profuse volume of arrogant spew, he's basically a non-participant in this investigation. Anyone who has ever tried to have a discussion or debate with him has failed. But not for lack of typing.

By ScottN (Scottn) (134.69.102.202) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 04:38 pm:

Ray, in People v. Collins, 438 P.2d 33 (1968), the California Supreme Court considered prosecution evidence similar to your own. The prosecution convicted a robbery suspect on the basis of multiplication of mutually independent events; he used expert testimony to show that the chances were less than 1:12 million that a person other than the defendant had committed a crime. The "events" multiplied were a ponytailed woman and a bearded Negro man driving a yellow getaway car. Like you did with Allen, the prosecutor applied random probabilities to each of the foregoing characteristics and then, using a mathematics professor, assigned a probablility to their mutual occurence.

The Supreme Court of California reversed the conviction, holding that the evidence was inadmissible. While I don't want to get into a pissing match about who was right in the Collins (and while I think you make some fair assumptions about Allen), I think the decision is worth reading if you can get ahold of it.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (66.227.204.206.bay.mi.chartermi.net - 66.227.204.206) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 08:19 am:

Thank you for that information, Scott. I never really thought this kind of thing would get very far in court. I only thought of it as a potentially useful investigative tool such as a profile or a polygraph exam. I'm amazed that a prosecutor actually tried it. I guess they did more than try didn't they, they actually convinced a jury. You've got me curious enough that I'm going to look into that. Thanks again.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 11:27 am:

http://www.law.harvard.edu/publications/evidenceiii/cases/people.htm

Excellent, catch, Scott. The case is as exactly on point as imaginable. Substitute a few names for the those of the key players in the case, and you have a perfect analysis of Ray's theory. Also why a more appropriate lead for this thread would be "The answer to why Allen looks like the best suspect is: MATHEMATICS!"

Keep up the good work.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 11:28 am:

Oops! meant to say:

"Also why a more appropriate lead for this thread would be "The answer to why Allen looks like the best suspect is: ILLUSION!"!"

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) (12-231-193-32.client.attbi.com - 12.231.193.32) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 12:07 pm:

This thread is not about getting Allen convicted. Would everyone please go back and read Ray's initial post at the beginning?

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 12:41 pm:

Very good point, Tom. It's about why ALA "looks like the best suspect". As Ray points out, its an investigative tool, not a triual theory.
How the heck did we get off on the track of guilt and conviction?

But at some point in an investigation, the criterion for a good suspect IS whether you could convict. So Ray's theory is a pretty good explanation of why ALA looks like such a good suspect. In fact its an excellent explanation, because if approximates in mathematical terms exactly the subjective thought process we seem to go through when sizing up all the circumstantial evidence in the case: "Boy, what are the odds of THAT . . . ?"

But the rebuttal to Ray's theory is an even better explanation of why ALA turns out to be only the best of a bad lot.

By Alan Cabal (Alan_Cabal) (cache-rh01.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.252.161) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 04:14 pm:

Without a doubt, ALA looks like the best suspect. So did Lee Harvey Oswald. And the WTC collapse looks like it happened because airplanes hit WTC1 and WTC2; unfortunately, that fails to explain the collapse of WTC7. ALA doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to the sketch.

Ray's point was good and presented well. But my own feeling is that ALA was a psychotic loudmouth trying to showboat his way into some level of notoriety based on another fiend's work.

By ScottN (Scottn) (134.69.102.196) on Tuesday, October 28, 2003 - 05:45 pm:

Ray, getting back to your theory, I think it is a useful investigative tool. I'm not here to bad-mouth your efforts (even though they wouldn't stand up in court).

Having said that, I do have an issue with some of your assumptions. Narrowing it down to an actual resident of Vallejo (and not Martinez or American Canyon or Pinole) is one. Positing "handwriting that compared favorably to Zodiac" is another. I'm not aware of such a similarity.

There are definitely connections between Allen and Z. But that Allen was in Riverside on 10/30/66 and that no other Vallejo resident was there on the same day, even if true, just doesn't rise to a conclusion of guilt.

As Alan says, it does seem to raise a connection between the two. Nonetheless, that connection exists purely through absence slip showing Allen was there--no need to multiply "independent events".

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 07:45 am:

SCott: I agree with your basic approach here, but I believe that Tom has some confrimation independent of the absence slip that ALA was in riverside. I dont know what the basis ofthe confrimatin is, but it can't be the slip.

By Ray N (Ray_N) (66.227.204.206.bay.mi.chartermi.net - 66.227.204.206) on Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 12:05 pm:

I'm very grateful to Scott for digging this case up. I always wondered whether this had ever been tried in court. While I do not think my analysis, or for that matter, an analysis done by a professional would convict Allen, I have done considerable reading on this case since Scott brought it to light. Please understand that I am in no way trying to simply buttress the arguments I have made previously, but I would like to point out some things about this ruling that I believe prevent us from claiming outright that the case demonstrates that such evidence would never be usable in court, a position I would describe as untennable.

In the first line of their ruling, the Court wrote, "While we discern no inherent incombefore us, defendant should not have had his guilt determined by the odds and that he is entitled to a new trial. We reverse the judgment."

Having read only that much, we might be inclined to think that the Justices have made an outright determination that this entire class of evidence is improper. The only logical basis for this could be that it cannot meet the judicial standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt. If they were to stop there, we would realize that this brush would be so wide that it would touch a great number of cases that we see even today. But, fortunately, they didn't stop there. They went on to write several hundred words qualifying this remark. And with good reason.

Let's think about DNA analysis for a minute. There have been many cases of rape, for example, without any evidence other than a medical opinion of rape combined with the presence of usable DNA. Now, play the tape again in your head. "... the defendant should not have had his guilt determined by the odds and he is entitled to a new trial." Now we can begin to see the reason for the extensive prose of the court on this case. Of course we can convict on odds alone. It's done every day. Now, let's further consider that this ruling came down in 1968, before the advent of DNA testing. Can we determine if the Justices had enough information available to correctly make this ruling? Fingerprint evidence was of course well established in 1968, and had been for many years. Fingerprint evidence is accepted as evidence of guilt. And, if we consider what the basis of discrimination with fingerprints is, we find that it is wholly based upon the provable statistical equations that tell us it is virtually impossible for any two people who have ever lived to have had exactly the same fingerprints. There is no exception to this, not even with identical twins as it is related to an individual's phenotype, or the way one's genes
interact with the environment. However, the variance is still linked to a common genotype. In other words, fingerprints are different not only because of different DNA, but because of different developmental environments. For purposes of this ruling, then, we can say that the logic of probabilities relates as well to fingerprints as it does to DNA, because one is based in large part on the other. So what does this tell us about the ruling? It tells us that the Justices had all the information they needed to rule properly even though they didn't know about DNA evidence specifically.

So, if DNA and fingerprints are probability (odds) based, how can we reconcile the position that the defendant should not have had his guilt determined by the odds? Simply because they were not referring to this type of evidence broadly, but rather this particular evidence as developed and presented by the prosecution in this particular case. In order to see why this is so, we have to review the case a little. In a nutshell, we had two defendants accused of strongarm robbery against a stereotype little old lady. The female defendant allegedly pushed the victim down and stole her property. The victim
described a female with a blond pony tail. A second witness saw a woman with a blond pony tail get into a car driven by a black male in the same vicinity at about the same time. However, the two witnesses did not agree on the type of clothing worn by the female. And although the second witness identified the male driver in a lineup, the man was beardless at the time of the identification, but bearded at the time of the incident. Therefore, the identification was tainted. Instead of realizing they had no case, prosecution decided to try to manufacture some statistical evidence that was supposed to show that even though the eyewitness testimony probably wasn't going to meet the jury's expectation of evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, it was ok, because any two people even roughly matching that description were likely to be guilty by odds of 12 million to 1.

The Court took exception not to the type of evidence introduced per se, but to how that evidence was developed, what it was based upon, and just as importantly, how it was presented to the jury. To wit, the Justices wrote:

"At the seven-day trial the prosecution experienced some difficulty in establishing the identities of the perpetrators of the crime. The victim could not identify Janet and had never seen defendant. The identification by the witness Bass, who observed the girl run out of the alley and get into the automobile, was incomplete as to Janet and may have been weakened as to defendant. There was also evidence, introduced by the defense, that Janet had worn light-colored clothing on the day in question, but both the victim and Bass testified that the girl they observed had worn dark clothing."

The above statement establishes that the Prosecution basically had no case in the conventional sense, but had elected to go to trial anyway thinking they could baffle the jury into a conviction with scientific reasoning. However, the Court discerned major problems with how they went about this...

"In an apparent attempt to bolster the identifications, the prosecutor called an instructor of mathematics at a state college. Through this witness he sought to establish that, assuming the robbery was committed by a Caucasian woman with a blonde ponytail who left the scene accompanied by a Negro with a beard and mustache, there was an overwhelming probability that the crime was committed by any couple answering such distinctive characteristics. The witness testified, in substance, to the "product rule,'' which states that the probability of the joint occurrence of a number of mutually independent events is equal to the product of the individual probabilities that each of the events will occur. Without presenting any statistical evidence whatsoever in support of the probabilities for the factors selected, the prosecutor then proceeded to have the witness assume probability factors for the various characteristics which he deemed to be shared by the guilty couple and all other couples answering to such distinctive characteristics."

"The following assumptions were made with regard to the factors involved in the analysis:

Characteristic Individual Probability

A. Partly yellow automobile 1/10

B. Man with mustache 1/4

C. Girl with ponytail 1/10

D. Girl with blond hair 1/3

E. Negro man with beard 1/10

F. Interracial couple in car 1/1000"

The Court further wrote:

"As we have indicated, the specific technique presented through the mathematician's testimony and advanced by the prosecutor to measure the probabilities in question suffered from two basic and pervasive defects. An inadequate evidentiary foundation and an inadequate proof of statistical independence. First, as to the foundational requirement, we find the record devoid of any evidence relating to any of the six individual probability factors used by the prosecutor and ascribed by him to the six characteristics as we have set them out in footnote 10, ante. To put it another way, the prosecution produced no evidence
whatsoever showing, or from which it could be in any way inferred, that only one out of every ten cars which might have been at the scene of the robbery was partly yellow, that only one out of every four men who might have been there wore a mustache, that only one out of every ten girls who might have been there wore a ponytail, or that any of the other individual probability factors listed were even roughly accurate."

In other words, the problem lay with the data processing concept of GIGO (Garbage In - Garbage Out). Since there was no way to show that the above assumptions were actually "good numbers" that corresponded directly to the actual representative number of these individual characteristics across the population, the above numbers were necessarily meaningless. Further, the product rule requires these factors to be statistically independent of one another. Since the prosecution could not or did not make a showing that, for instance, being blond has no bearing on the likelihood of wearing one's hair in a pony tail, the product rule was not relevant or even applicable in a general sense.

Additionally, so desperate was the Prosecutor that he appealed to the jury for a guilty verdict while indicating his exasperation with the concept of proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and the Court did not fail to take notice:

"Few defense attorneys, and certainly few jurors, could be expected to comprehend the basic flaws in the prosecution's analysis. Conceivably even the prosecutor erroneously believed that his equation established a high probability that no other bearded Negro in the Los Angeles area drove a yellow car accompanied by a ponytailed blonde. In any event, although his technique could demonstrate no such thing, he solemnly told the jury that he had supplied mathematical proof of guilt. Sensing the novelty of that notion, the prosecutor told the jurors that the traditional idea of proof beyond a reasonable doubt represented "the most hackneyed, stereotyped, trite, misunderstood concept in criminal law.'' He sought to reconcile the jury to the risk that, under his "new math'' approach to criminal jurisprudence, "on some rare occasion ... an innocent person may be convicted.'' "Without taking that risk,'' the prosecution continued, "life would be intolerable ... because ... there would be immunity for the Collinses, for people who chose not to be employed to go down and push old ladies down and
take their money and be immune because how could we ever be sure they are the ones who did it?"

Obviously, the foregoing did not sit well with the Court. Now, they point out that even had the prosecution met the above burdens of proof, the numbers as they used them could not have met the reasonable doubt standard:

1. "We seriously doubt that such evidence could ever be compiled since no statistician could possibly determine after the fact which cars, or which individuals, ``might'' have been present at the scene of the robbery; certainly there is no reason to suppose that the human and automotive populations of San Pedro, California, include all potential culprits or, conversely, that all members of these populations are proper candidates for inclusion."

2. "As to the second inherent failing in the prosecution's approach, even assuming that the first failing could be discounted, the most a mathematical computation could ever yield would be a measure of the probability that a random couple would possess the distinctive features in question. In the present case, for example, the prosecution attempted to compute the probability that a random couple would include a bearded Negro, a blonde girl with a ponytail, and a partly yellow car; the prosecution urged that this probability was no more than one in 12 million. Even accepting this conclusion as
arithmetically accurate, however, one still could not conclude that the Collinses were probably the guilty couple. On the contrary, as we explain in the Appendix, the prosecution's figures actually imply a likelihood of over 40 percent that the
Collinses could be "duplicated'' by at least one other couple who might equally have committed the San Pedro robbery. Urging that the Collinses be convicted on the basis of evidence which logically establishes no more than this seems as indefensible as arguing for the conviction of X on the ground that a witness saw either X or X's twin commit the crime."

3. "The prosecutor asked the mathematics instructor: ``Now, let me see if you can be of some help to us with some independent factors, and you have some paper you may use. Your specialty does not equip you, I suppose, to give us some probability of such things as a yellow car as contrasted with any other kind of car, does it? ... I appreciate the fact that you can't
assign a probability for a car being yellow as contrasted to some other car, can you?'' A. ``No, I couldn't.''"

4. "Assuming arguendo that factors B and E (see fn. 10, ante), were correctly estimated, nevertheless it is still arguable that most Negro men with beards also have mustaches (exhibit 3 herein, for instance, shows defendant with both a mustache and a beard, indeed in a hirsute continuum); if so, there is no basis for multiplying 1/4 by 1/10 to estimate the proportion of Negroes who wear beards and mustaches. Again, the prosecution's technique could never be meaningfully applied, since its
accurate use would call for information as to the degree of interdependence among the six individual factors. Such information cannot be compiled, however, since the relevant sample necessarily remains unknown."

5. "In the instant case, for instance, the victim could not state whether the girl had a ponytail, although the victim observed the girl as she ran away. The witness Bass, on the other hand, was sure that the girl whom he saw had a ponytail. The demonstration engaged in by the prosecutor also leaves no room for the possibility, although perhaps a small one, that the girl whom the victim and the witness observed was, in fact, not the same girl."

6. "The prosecution's approach, however, could furnish the jury with absolutely no guidance on the crucial issue: Of the admittedly few such couples, which one, if any, was guilty of committing this robbery? Probability theory necessarily remains silent on that question, since no mathematical equation can prove beyond a reasonable doubt (1) that the guilty couple in fact possessed the characteristics described by the People's witnesses, or even (2) that only one couple possessing those distinctive characteristics could be found in the entire Los Angeles area."

In other words, the People had no case, but were nevertheless able to secure a guilty verdict by putting the jury into a voodoo trance with a succession of meaningless numbers. So, IMO, the Court ruled correctly in this case. However, I must point out that they did not take exception to the concept of statistical evidence being used. They only objected to the irresponsible and inaccurate use of baseless, manufactured "evidence." These are two very different concepts. Brown hair could always be disguised with a blond wig, and there could never be a body of statistics developed to account for this, or pony tails and mustaches, etc. However, suppose there was a case that did not rely on eyewitness testimony to establish certain physical traits or descriptions that were required for such an analysis as we saw here, such as one that is based on demographic or other type of data that is scientifically aquired and maintained in an official database, one can see how the Court's objection regarding the assumption of non-existent data might well be removed. In order to get past the stated
objections, one would only have to show the following:

1. That the data used was scientifically reliable.

2. That the individual characteristics selected were statistically independent of one another.

3. That the individual characteristics selected were relevant to the case, having firmly established their bearing in some conventionally accepted manner.

Perhaps this is why DNA and fingerprints are accepted in court, because they meet these criteria? Therefore, based on the details of what the Justices wrote, I think it is not correct to state that this type of evidence does not or would not stand up in court. If properly put together and presented, it could indeed.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-129-44-177-5.bos.east.verizon.net - 129.44.177.5) on Wednesday, October 29, 2003 - 04:18 pm:

Ray: I don't think anyone said that some type of statistical analysis would not stand up in court. The criticism is that your particular analysis would not stand up. I agree with that, because it suffers from the same flaws as the presentation in Collins, and a few more.

I am not sure you grasp exactly how weak that presentation was. You say

"The only logical basis for this [the Courtrejecying the evidence] could be that it cannot meet the judicial standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt."

and then:

"the numbers as they used them could not have met the reasonable doubt standard".

Its not a matter of reasonable doubt, its a matter of relevance. Overall proof must amount to overcoming reasonable doubt, but reasonable doubt is NOT the standard for deciding whether particular evidence should be allowed. Admissibility (in this case)depends on passing a much lower threshold: relevance. The court found that the evidence wasn't even relevant to the issues, much less establising anything beyond doubt, be cause there was no evidence at all for the probab8ility of the selected factors.

Rather than determine probabilites, you have made several assumptions, and have no statistical basis for the following factors:

That Z lived in Vallejo.
That Z did CJB.

Of the rest of your factors, not one is remotely similar to the factors in COllins: yellow car, beard, ponytail, blond hair: they are all vague generalizations rather than specific matches between Allen and known facts about the perp. Several that are specific are flat wrong or entirely without basis about Allen, or Z, or both, such as handwriting comaprison, knowledge of victims, bomb materials and typewriter. In addition, many of your factors are patently dependent. In Collins, at least there was a direct, specific correlation of 1.0 between the chosen factors and the suspects' features. Your factors do not nclude a single one that is as specific and clear. Under Collins, the factors you have chosen are irrelevant: they do not even tend to make your conclusion more likely than not.

On the other hand, under Collins, if you could actually determine the likelihood of specific factors that ALA and Z had in common, or identify likley factors and discount them by the odds that ALA and Z do not have them in common (i.e. that both Z and ALA were in Riverside when CJB was killed, that Z lived in Vallejo), then you might really have something.

By Peter H (Peter_H) (pool-151-199-49-108.bos.east.verizon.net - 151.199.49.108) on Monday, November 03, 2003 - 12:24 pm:

Ray:

You hear any more support form Anon on this topic? Any backchannel messages?

Hm.