Lynch/Allen Interview, Oct. 6th, 1969. Message Board: Arthur Leigh Allen: Lynch/Allen Interview, Oct. 6th, 1969.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Monday, June 24, 2002 - 12:56 pm:

Tom, you got it buddy.*

Peter wrote, "They couldn't arrest in another jurisdiction without a warrant and usually a courtesy call on the locals. They can tail anywhere they want."*

Yes Peter, you are absolutely right and, as always, I appreciate your setting me straight on this issue.*

Zander, let's keep it constructive instead of personal and we will be just fine, okay?*

Allow me to explain my argument in a different way. First, allow me to refresh the actual issue. You wrote, "Allen would commit the Stine crime after just being interviewed as a Zodiac suspect. That's incompetence, there's no doubt about it. I don't care if he was the most confident killer who ever lived. He would not know whether he was being watched or not."

Okay, but why should Allen assume that he is being watched or tailed? Wouldn't that depend on how the interview went? Yes, Lynch interviewed Allen on October 6, 1969; 5 days before the Stine shooting and 2 weeks after the attack at Berryessa. Your argument is that for Allen to have committed the Stine shooting within such a timeframe would be incompetent, right? My argument is that, from Allen's pov, not only would it have been the perfect time for him to pull off PH, but also it demonstrates exactly the type of audacity that we would expect from the Zodiac.

Think about it: First of all, the likelihood that Allen was being tailed by VPD is virtually zero. Why? Exactly because of the interview performed by Lynch. Remember, that was the first time that Allen had ever been interviewed as a possible Zodiac suspect. Furthermore, not only was Lynch's interview extremely cursory (Lynch's initial report on Allen is what, something like 3-5 sentences in length?) but he also wasn't impressed by Allen as a viable suspect in any manner whatsoever. In other words, from Lynch's pov, Allen wasn't the Zodiac. Personally, that tells me that VPD did not place a tail on Allen.

Now, of course you are right when you say that Allen wouldn't necessarily have known that Lynch didn't consider him a viable suspect. Therefore, he should have assumed that he was being watched, right? Okay, fine. So what does Allen as the Zodiac do? He devises a quick murder scheme with a different MO (face it folks, PH was probably the least planned of all of the Zodiac's crimes and the MO was different, right?), drives -- as he did for Berryessa -- to a completely different county/jurisdiction that very easily is far enough away from his own home to determine if he is being tailed or not, and commits what arguably can be called his most audacious crime. Remember, this is assuming that Allen assumed that he was being watched by VPD.

On the other hand, if Allen assumed he wasn't being watched, then PH remains the same as it has since 1969; an enigma wrapped within a riddle: Why did Z change his MO? Why pull off PH so shortly after Lake Berryessa? Why San Francisco instead of Vallejo? Why Berryessa? Why Berryessa at all? Was LB in fact a Z crime? And on and on and on . . .

I guess my argument is that hey; doesn't the above scenario actually make sense? Can any TK advocates incorporate your guy into a scenario that makes more sense? Is anybody with a background in psychology willing to explain why that would or wouldn't make sense from a psychological point of view? What about from a criminological point of view?


*Note: I was going to originally post this under the "12/18" thread but decided not too because, well, it doesn't pertain and I had no idea that I was going to end up creating an entirely different monster.


By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 08:04 am:

All right, allow me to simplify things a bit:

Knowing that Allen was interviewed by Det. Lynch 5 days prior to the murder of Stine, is it reasonable to discount Allen as the Zodiac based upon the assumption that he would likely have layed-low given said situation? Why or why not?

What kind of psychological affect would the interview have had on Allen if he were guilty of the Z crimes based on what we know, as fact, about his criminal history?

How reasonable is it to argue that, if in fact Allen was the Zodiac, a direct link can be made between Presidio Heights and the interview conducted by Det. Lynch?

All constructive feedback is, as always, appreciated.


By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 10:39 am:

Anyone who was interviewed as a result of the Berryessa incident would have been interviewed within days of the Stine murder. I'm sure the police looked at a number of individuals other than Allen during the period involved.

For what it's worth, I think it highly unlikely that a killer, unless he were suffering from psychotic delusions, would commit an audacious crime of that nature within days of being interviewed by the police. Possible, yes. Probable, no.

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 10:51 am:

Doug, if Allen was the Zodiac he probably felt the need to throw the police off his trail after leaving surviving victims and being interviewed by police.

At Presidio Heights the Zodiac behaved very recklessly, as if he had nothing to lose and everything to gain. Allen might have felt the same.

By Peter H (Peter_H) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 12:10 pm:


Good thought, but it assumes perfect communication, or at least very effective cooperation, between SFPD, Napa and Vallejo. Quite an assumption, no?

By Lapumo (Lapumo) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 03:12 pm:

Isn't this what Allen was all about? He took every opportunity to put himself right "in there".
Something spurred Zodiac on to kill again so quickly, within two weeks of LB.The fact that Allen was interviewed only a week beforehand makes it a fair coincidence in my mind. If Allen was not the Zodiac ,then he went along way out of his way in an effort to let people think he was.Whether you put that down to him being delusional or exclude on the grounds that such an apparently clever killer would not do the things he did,this is typical Allen.If Allen was the Zodiac,doesen't this fit perfectly.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 03:57 pm:

Peter, it has nothing to do with the state of cooperation with the agencies involved. It has everything to do with the state of mind of the individual.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Tuesday, June 25, 2002 - 06:51 pm:

Doug wrote, "I'm sure the police looked at a number of individuals other than Allen during the period involved."

Of course they did, Doug. However, only one of them went on to become a number one suspect: Allen.

"I think it highly unlikely that a killer . . . would commit an audacious crime of that nature within days of being interviewed by the police."

Something has to account for Z's audacious behavior at Presidio Heights and his change in MO. Sure, perhaps he was trying to shake any homosexual connotations that may have been associated with him, but personally I think his reasoning for PH was more tangible than that.

Lapumo asked, "If Allen was the Zodiac,doesen't this fit perfectly(?)"

Yes Lapumo, I think it does, despite the fact that, as Classic points out in another thread, Allen bawled like a baby when confronted with the school principal about the molestation charges. Personally, I attribute this fact to the way in which Allen was confronted, but I'll address that issue on the other thread.


By Kevin (Kevinrm) ( - on Wednesday, June 26, 2002 - 12:39 am:

I'll go with Doug on this one....not likely. If Allen were Z, he'd be as nervous as a cup of coffee for quite some time after the interview.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Wednesday, June 26, 2002 - 07:13 am:


I'm curious as to why you say that? Why isn't it just as likely that Allen as Zodiac would have reacted exactly as Tom suggested, "(Allen) probably felt the need to throw the police off his trail after leaving surviving victims and being interviewed . . . "?

What better way to throw the police off of your tail than by doing exactly the opposite of what was "probably" expected of him by VPD? Also, keep in mind that we really have no way of determining what Allen took away from the interview. He may have walked away elated; thinking to himself, "Man, the police don't know squat." After all, Allen as a suspect didn’t at all impress Lynch. Perhaps Allen could sense that.

Some thoughts,


By Peter H (Peter_H) ( - on Wednesday, June 26, 2002 - 08:14 am:


I was addressing your first premise, that any LB interviewee would also be interviewed within days after PH. That assumes that either Napa or Vallejo had the information that SFPD did, and renewed their interest, or that SFPD knew who Napa and Vallejo had interviewed after LB. That has everything to do with communication and cooperation between agancies. As far as the state of mind of the killer goes, he may well have thought that moving to yet a third jurisdiction would shield him behind a lack of just such cross fertilization.
But the proof of the puddin is this: did it happen? Were the LB interviewees actually reinterviewed after PH?

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Wednesday, June 26, 2002 - 08:27 am:

"Were the LB interviewees actually reinterviewed after PH?"

Allen certainly was. What was it? 2 years later?


By Zander Kite (Zk) ( - on Thursday, June 27, 2002 - 10:07 pm:

I look at it this way: If you are having an affair on your girlfriend and she accuses you of it: Do you stay out all night without explanation, while leaving lipstick and panties under your bed, in some bizarre attempt to throw her off your trail, or do you lay low until it blows over ?

By Drake (Drake) ( - on Thursday, June 27, 2002 - 10:39 pm:

I look at it this way. If the dogs are close, throw the meat way over there.

By Zander Kite (Zk) ( - on Friday, June 28, 2002 - 07:26 pm:

Drake: I agree with you: You are saying that Allen should have destroyed evidence: That is exactly what most killers in his post-interview situation do. Lay low and cover their tracks. He doesn't do this: He commits his riskiest murder and collects evidence. Now he has a bloody shirt and letters to mail. Very inconsistent indeed!

By Drake (Drake) ( - on Saturday, June 29, 2002 - 11:41 am:

I'm saying that Allen, in a panic, would have wanted to get the authorities to look somewhere else away from Vallejo and himself. With the exception of the letter, Zodiac changed his MO with Stine. Why? Because he needed to quickly find a victim in a crowded city, away from Vallejo, without worrying about stalking his prey. He chose an easy target: a cab driver, whom he could tell to take him to a location of his choosing. Why else vary from the victimology he had grown to love?

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Thursday, July 11, 2002 - 12:10 pm:

Thanks Mike!

First of all, let me dress the stage: Assume for a moment that Allen was in fact the Zodiac. With this in mind, consider that Allen was interviewed by Lynch on October 6th, 1969; just 5 days prior to murdering Paul Stine and 2 weeks following Lake Berryessa. Okay . . .

Given these factors and in your professional opinion, how likely is it that Allen would travel to Presidio Heights to kill Paul Stine? Is it unreasonable to believe that Allen was literally prompted to kill Stine precisely because of his interview with Lynch?

I look at it this way, from Allen's perspective it seems to reasonably explain several things: Why travel to San Francisco to kill a cabdriver? To determine if VPD is putting the tail on you. Why the change in MO? So it won't be linked to the Zodiac until you desire for it to be. Why commit an audacious murder days after being interviewed? It seems that such a prospect would drive a murderer nuts not knowing if he was being watched or not. Therefore, how does one set about finding out for certain? Answer: Commit a crime in a different city with a different MO, take credit for it with a Zodiac missive, and see if VPD, NSD, or SFPD comes knocking on your door. Then, when it's been determined that you're not being watched, you can now safely destroy any and all physical evidence linking you to the crimes -- sort of a "clean slate" kind of concept -- except for the one thing that you need to continue authenticating yourself in future missives: the piece of Stine's shirt that you've carefully and meticulously stashed somewhere known only to you.

Sorry, I'm rambling a bit there, but does any of that make sense? In my mind, such a scenario seems to answer more questions than it raises. Furthermore, I'm of the opinion that such is not the case with any of the other known suspects. Pick any suspect you like, if you place them in Zodiac's shoes, then Presidio Heights remains a complete enigma: Why the change in MO? Why San Francisco? Why a cabdriver? Why the article of clothing? And so on and so forth.

I guess my question is: What do you think?

Thanks again,


By Mike Kelleher (Mike_Kelleher) ( - on Thursday, July 11, 2002 - 01:45 pm:

Hi Scott:

Ok, I understand your question. Let me take a crack at an answer.

Actually, what I'm going to say doesn't rely on Zodiac being ALA, other than the circumstances as you described them. So, you can make that assumption or not and my opinion would remain the same. This is because I'm working from Zodiac's profile, primarily.

There is nothing unreasonable about Zodiac acting out a response murder that was linked to a police interview. In fact, just those few facts alone would be very consistent with Zodiac's other (known) behavior. If you recall this part of my book, you'll recognize that I speculated that the Stine killing was a result of Avery's taunting and questioning of Zodiac's masculinity. In response, Zodiac murdered again. Your proposition is almost the same from a psychological point of view. Zodiac is confronted by male power in the person of an investigator and is prompted to kill again. Makes good sense all the way around. Consistent.

Now, as to the location, motives, m/o, etc., there is lots of room for speculation and therefore lots of room for error. However, as I said, your basic premise is sound for the Zodiac persona as we know it. I have no problem with it.

Hope that helps.

By Mike Kelleher (Mike_Kelleher) ( - on Friday, July 12, 2002 - 05:47 am:

Hi Scott:

Likewise. I'll post when I can.


By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Saturday, July 13, 2002 - 07:14 am:

Recall, however, that Zodiac appears to have planned the PH event by ostensibly parking his car at a strategic location from where he could make his getaway. That militates against an impulse-type scenario.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 04:09 am:


You’ve conjured some very good questions and, for what it is worth, I've come to some honest, gut felt, thought out conclusions/considerations. I'll give you what I can in terms personal opinion; but please keep in mind that what I have to offer is mostly speculative. Though I'm flattered by your questions, by all means solicit the knowledge of the board in general; that way you are guaranteed a better than decent approximation of the truth. Anyway . . .

Though not as well planned as any of the Zodiac's previous (known) murders, Presidio Heights, in my opinion, was a stroke of criminal genius if you look at the events through the mindset of Arthur Leigh Allen. In other words, as Mike Kelleher graciously offered, "There is nothing unreasonable about Zodiac acting out a response murder that was linked to a police interview." (See posts above.)

I honestly don't believe it possible for Paul Stine to have been murdered at random in any other sense than literally being in the wrong place at the wrong time. In other words, as Doug correctly pointed out, the route and basic mechanics of the crime had to have been preplanned even though Paul Stine himself could have been any cabdriver in the city and the situation and probable outcome would have remained the same: Zodiac directing a cabdriver to a predetermined location where he could facilitate the use of an unknown MO and also escape with relative ease.

Zodiac, in my opinion, lived nowhere close to Presidio Heights but was nevertheless able to escape the area without incident. I, personally, don't see how such an event could have occurred without the aid of prior knowledge which would likely include: Familiarization with the area, an established escape route, and an MO that would throw the hounds off-track until Zodiac deemed it safe to attribute the crime to himself.

Fellow board members, any other opinions, corroborative or otherwise?


By Ray N (Ray_N) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 11:22 am:

PH was a perfect location to be able to escape from the jurisdiction within minutes. The GGB was right there. Hmm, do we know anyone who lived on the other side of the Bay?

By Ray N (Ray_N) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 11:30 am:


The location of the crime was essentially the same as the destination address given by Stine over the radio. This information would obviously be the first thing the driver/fare would discuss. There is nothing about this that suggests to me that Z was taking this cab ride for any purpose other than to kill. I doubt Z just walked around all the time with a gun under his belt for starters. For Stine to have unwittingly talked Z into shooting him would require both that Z had a different reason for taking that cab ride, and that he just happened to have a gun with him. Since he almost certainly had a car in the vicinity of the crime, why/how would/could he be at Mason & Geary unless he made a deliberate effort to get there and hail a cab back to the vicinity of his vehicle? That all adds up to Stine being dead the minute he responded to Zodiac's hail, IMO.


By Esau (Esau) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 12:38 pm:

Scott, email me.

By Peter H (Peter_H) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 03:15 pm:


The GGB doesn't exactly cross the Bay. Of course, you can get anywhere from anywhere, but the most direct route back to Vallejo, if that's what you mean, is the OBB.

By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Monday, July 15, 2002 - 05:40 pm:

Taking the GGB is perhaps 10 miles or so farther out of the way going along 101 north to 37 east, but there's no toll in that direction, and a lot less traffic at that time of night than the other direction. Plus, you're out of the city in minutes, but if you head towards Vallejo via Oakland and the BB, you have to cross the entire city and your travel time increases quite a bit, not to mention there'd be cops for Z to contend with. IMO, if Z left the city (rather than sacked out at a friend's place or had an apartment or room there), he took the GGB.

By Peter H (Peter_H) ( - on Tuesday, July 16, 2002 - 08:23 am:

Ed: 10 miles is exactly right, but that adds 30 percent to the distance. Cherry St to Vallejo is 35 mi by OBB, 45+ by Richmond. I'm not sure the cross-town traffic cuts against using BB as an escape route: especially if there was no description of the vehicle; hiding in plain sight, you know? The scene was about 2.5 miles as the dog walks from the 101 north ramp for the GGB, and about 4 mi from the 101 south ramp for OBB. Total travel time is still less crossing the city, by about 15 minutes today. I don't think the toll is a factor, since its on the Oakland side, well out of the City. But the real point is, if GBB is the logical escape route, that is true no matter who the killer was, and the proximity of the PH scene to that escape does not make it any more likely that the killer was from Vallejo or anywhere else in particular.

By Drake (Drake) ( - on Tuesday, July 16, 2002 - 10:08 am:

The toll is on the Carquinez bridge coming from SFO. You're right Ed, Zodiac probably would have wanted to avoid the toll plaza since he was drenched in blood.

By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Tuesday, July 16, 2002 - 11:41 am:

Peter: the GGB route might add to the distance, but the OBB adds to travel time; of course, it also depends on the route taken through the city as well. Since you'd be in the city maybe 10-15 minutes longer going via OBB rather than GGB, and the 10 extra miles via GGB equates to about 10 extra minutes of travel time, I'd be willing to bet that they're roughly the same at 10PM or later. Of course, this is making the assumption that Z had to return to the "north Bay area," ie, the Vallejo area (not because I think Allen was Z, but because I've always thought that Z was local to Vallejo). In any case, GGB makes more sense anyway, since he'd be out of the city in a fraction of the time than if he took OBB.

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Tuesday, July 16, 2002 - 04:12 pm:

It doesn't take that much effort or time to learn Lake Herman Road and Blue Rock Springs!A few day and night runs and you got it.It does not require a 'certified' Vallejo resident!It is just two areas and the first from the last attack was six months,which is plenty of time to learn BRS!First you check out LHR and attack.Wait six months and survey BRS-done.It can be argued from both perspectives.
Although Vallejo is a nut job layout,one would not have to learn the entire city map and alleys, to cruise LHR for a young couple parked there.
Many a serial killer has done the same thing.Survey a strange and new city ,find a victim,kill- then leave.I have read a ton of info on this feature of sequential killers.

By Esau (Esau) ( - on Tuesday, July 16, 2002 - 04:14 pm:

Ed, back in 1969 the Oakland Bay Bridge had toll booths at both ends of the bridge. I remember it was 25 cents each way. I remember because my Dad used to let me hand the guy the quarter.

By Peter H (Peter_H) ( - on Wednesday, July 17, 2002 - 09:04 am:

Ed: According to Mapquest (which I have found generally accurate on such things) travel time via GGB is 15 minutes longer than via OBB and the total extra time in the City is the time it takes to drive 1.5 - 2mi. Mauybe 5 minutes at that time of night. Be that as it may, the point is neither escape route indicates a North Bay destination over any other. The GGB route continues over the Richmond bridge to a point 7.5 mi north of Berkeley, and 17= mi from Vallejo (affording access to the same area as OBB), or north up 101 to god knows where.