Bates stab wounds Message Board: Possible Zodiac Victim Cheri Jo Bates: Bates stab wounds

By Howard ( - on Tuesday, August 29, 2000 - 04:11 pm:

There has been a lot of discussion concerning the # of times Bates was stabbed.The RPD assert that since she was stabbed some 42 times it must be their "local boy", "Bill Barnett",as the perp .The reasoning goes that if the victim is stabbed numerous times it must have been someone that knew the victim and therefore the "over kill" is vented anger,etc. Well, I asked an expert on homicide if the aforementioned supposition is correct. He readily told me that there have been many 187 cases with this "over kill"-including victims being stabbed 50 or more times and they did NOT know the killer!Some of these victims fought the killer and this enraged him,hence, the over kill.Others would need to stab the victim numerous times to achieve orgasm .Other killers "see" their mother or old girlfriend in the victim and this subliminal rage surfaces with an abundance of stabbing (or gun shots).There have been articles on how speed affects a killer.While on the drug everything is magnified and when they stab the victim a repeat /muscular action transpires and its as though they can't stop this motion ,so we get the OK again.I have read scores of books on homicide some showing stats on this very topic,and I can say theres a lot of victims out there that NEVER knew their killer ,yet, suffered an abundance of stab wounds and/or gun shots,and, yes,prolonged torture!I can see why the RPD and others that want the Bates attacker to be the "local boy" cling to the old adage 'they knew their attacker'-its a plus in the Bates case-for them,but it is NOT total proof Cheri really knew her attacker -at least, not that well!Remember Cheri gave a tremendous fight and clawed and scratched the attacker and possibly called him a few choice words-victims do this while struggling with their attacker according to reports,but it inflames the perp even more ,hence ,the over kill!

By Anonymous ( - on Wednesday, August 30, 2000 - 11:19 am:

Good point, Howard. And wasn't Cecilia Ann Shepard stabbed thirty-some-odd times? I think that the people who favor the "local boy" as the murderer are ignoring some of the data--the desktop poem, in particular. I realize, of course, that Zodiac didn't have to be the killer to write the poem, but it's a possibility.

By ibeethoven ( - on Wednesday, August 30, 2000 - 11:30 am:

Correction re number of times Ms. Shepard was stabbed: According to the "Victims" link on this very Website, she was stabbed not 30-some times, but 10--five in the front and five in the back.

By Tom Voigt ( - on Wednesday, August 30, 2000 - 11:33 am:

Speaking of "ignoring some of the data":
Shepard was stabbed ten times, not "thirty-some-odd times." If she hadn't struggled so mightily, the number of wounds might have been less.
This info has been published on my Victims page for over two years.

By Anonymous ( - on Wednesday, August 30, 2000 - 11:50 am:

You are right, you are right--Humblest apologies.
I'm not sure why I thought that, because I can't even find it anywhere in Graysmith.

By Tom Voigt ( - on Wednesday, August 30, 2000 - 11:56 am:

There's the problem:
You are relying that yellow book.

By Shannon ( - on Thursday, August 31, 2000 - 09:11 am:

Howard .... I would really like to know where you are getting your information on this case.

By Howard ( - on Sunday, September 17, 2000 - 11:40 pm:

Shannon-for a partial answer see my post on the Bates/ Confession sector-thanx.

By Mike ( - on Monday, September 18, 2000 - 09:35 am:


Howard, 1) Are you Howard Davis? and if so, 2) Are you (or a colleague) responsible for the doctored "composite drawing" of Bruce Davis that is in the AMW special? You are the author of the "Zodiac-Manson Connection", correct? I've never read it, unfortunately. Is that figure part of your book, since it is part of your thesis?


By Howard ( - on Tuesday, September 19, 2000 - 11:50 pm:

Mike -Last night I wrote a ton of info regarding your question .I'm startled that its not up tonight!I will repeat later-its bed time.

By Chrissy Shaw ( - on Wednesday, September 20, 2000 - 05:17 pm:


Do you not answer your e-mails, even if to say "no,".

Chrissy Shaw

By Anonymous ( - on Wednesday, September 20, 2000 - 09:43 pm:

I don't think he's the only one who doesn't answer e-mails, Ms. Shaw, unless you just haven't gotten to mine. (I apologize for straying off-topic.)

By Howard ( - on Wednesday, September 20, 2000 - 10:18 pm:

Chrissy-I wrote you an E,but it got erased. I have tried three times tonight and I get an error. I'm a dunce on the computer and when a problem comes up I can sometimes fix it and other times...I will keep trying.

By Howard ( - on Wednesday, September 20, 2000 - 11:21 pm:

Mike- I'm writing a second time; bummer ,all that info gone.Yes, I'm HD. The so called "doctored" photo of Zodiac that is also in my book was the idea of Zodiac expert Dave Petersons wife . She did some sketching to compare Z with Bruce Davis.The caption states :"Head and facial hair[on Z] and glasses[on Davis] added for comparison by mrs. Dave Peterson."Then there is a photo of Davis(with full wavy hair) placed along side the Berryessa composite. Then there is a photo of Davis with a crew cut and beard getting into a PD vehicle(12/2/70)/;its a profile.Also ,there are three photos of Davis with long hair.Davis, since he was second in command in the family ,was allowed to sport a beard as did Manson. Witnesses and photos show that Davis ,like Manson some times, had short hair no beard and at other times just the opposite.Most people are ignorant on the inner workings of the Family and draw wrong conclusions about my suspect-like saying Davis wore his hair long(in the 60s) unlike Zodiac who wore a crew cut.The two photos of Davis BEFORE he went to jail were taken in December of 1970! Witnesses said he wore a crew cut from time to time.Now we must consider Zs statement that he looked like the composite only when he murdered his victims and the rest of the time he says he looked entirely different. He said that he would not reveal what his disguise consisted of! We have those that favor Allen, well, he was bald! We must, if we are of that persuasion believe RLA wore a wig as Z was seen with hair. Mageau in some of his ever changing depictions of Zs hair states he had a crew cut and in another report he says Zs hair was wavy,etc,. Hartnell saw sweaty brown hair through the hood slits . No one saw Z as bald/ing.Its things like this that make the Z case what it is DIFFICULT and unsolved!As a point of interest one of the possible Zodiac victims had wig hairs on their body. The police believe they belonged to the killer. I have the PD report.Tex Watson ,killer of Tate and others, owned a wig shop. He and my suspect were close friends-"birds of a feather"!At one of the Manson hide outs the PD found wigs(that ain't all they found either!).So Manson/Davis were always changing their appearance including their hair and facial hair.As I stated in another post I stand ready to match up my guy with Allen or any of them and I'm ready to show links/comparisons,etc.I'm answering a post that suggested the suspect people debate their guys and compare-well I'm ready to go on it!This is to show any of those interested a comparison. This is not for fun or ego-which I hate -but a good civil, intelligent debate to inform the interested and those that are not interested can check out the other posts-many of which are great!.

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 12:59 am:

There has been discussion that the attacker of Ms. Bates would never have taken a small knife with him if he was intent on killing her,or at least to scare her,etc.This is not true, as I have seen crime accounts where the perp took a small knife with the purpose of killing his intended victim and this was certainly done with great effect! I know of a martial arts master that carries a small knife with him at all times-he prefers it! He used the knife on a car jacker and killed him 'instantly'! Yes, the police were pleased as the cj was a hardened criminal that also tried to kill this master!The Bates guy put this knife to her throat to control her while he felt her,etc.(see the letter)in the alley, but he says that he had only one thing on his mind and that was to exact retribution for giving him the "brush off". One det. told me when Cheri Jo gave someone the brush off it was pretty rough ,she having a temper.She could, as the det. told pretty unsparing with her words,etc.If we follow the letters intent he was so enraged with her previous brush offs ,as only she could do, his ONLY thought was to "make her pay" for those humiliating rejections. Please read his words-no rape he wanted her dead.He started out choking Bates but she was athletic and she began a terrific struggle that no doubt surprised him as she was only 5' 3" tall and weighed 110lbs.Lets not think this was not altogether displeasing to him as he says it was a "ball"! I always see this man as 5'8"ish or so ,as I don't think that a 6'+ guy weighing say 230lbs.+ would have lost control and in maintaining that control-it doesn't seem the struggle would have went on as it did. My martial buddies agree. Its just speculation I know.I still have serious doubts as to the perp being Barnett, but I'm ready to relent when the proof comes out-if it ever does.

By Lapumo (Lapumo) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 10:28 am:

I have the same reservations about Barnett.One of the big doubts for me centers around the planning or lack of it.I asked this question before but did not get an answer.I wondered if the killer(to disable the car)had first to gain access to the passenger section or could this be accessed from the outside.If the former,it may say a lot about the planning of the crime!.

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 10:50 am:

What relevance does gaining access to the passenger side have to do with the planning of the crime?

By Lapumo (Lapumo) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 01:28 pm:

Hi Ed,
I would suggest the relevance lies in his ability
to do it,depending of course on how he did it.I assume he did not break a window.Was he able to pick the lock? Did he use the old "metal strip trick".He may have had to carry some other "implement" with him in order to do this.Therefore it required some more planning.
At the moment (for me at least)it's a case of what's easier to believe.Right now I am tending towards someone with a record who PLANNED this crime.There are too many things I am uncomfortable
with at the moment to go with Barnett.However I am stocking up on the Crow.

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 01:42 pm:

Ok, I understand what you're getting at now. If he somehow broke into her presumably locked car like a pro, then it certainly might suggest some sort of premeditation. But then, I don't recall anything about her car being broken into, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen.

What sort of things are you uncomforable with concerning "Barnett?"

By Peterh (Peterh) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 02:41 pm:

It doesn't take a pro to disable a VW bug of that vintage. The engine cover is released from the outside, and all the ignition goodies are right there on top.


By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Tuesday, January 02, 2001 - 06:04 pm:

I didn't know that... I've never owned a bug... but then, Lapumo was talking about getting into the cab first before the engine...

By Michaelmc (Michaelmc) ( - on Wednesday, January 03, 2001 - 07:40 am:

The only relavence to the passenger approach is that you can see the person in the drivers seat clearly and you are closer the the passenger who is better able to escape from the car. Although the passenger approach is a police tech. (I used to many times my self) It really is a good deception to make the car occupants think that there are more than one officer. If Z had a LE connection he might have use this for the approach but the real reason was that he wanted no one to get away


By Lapumo (Lapumo) ( - on Friday, January 05, 2001 - 07:40 am:

Peter, thanks for clearing that up.I was hoping to get a clearer picture on the premeditation/
planning aspects of this crime or lack of.
Ed,another thing that I was uncomfortable about was that there was no mention of Fingerprints.One would assume if this was a spur of the moment "ruse"the person who interfered with the car would have no great need to wear gloves,for instance!.There's also the question of the killer ensuring or knowing that CJB was actually alone.Could Barnett for instance,have checked the library without being seen? If it was Barnett,why did he feel the need to park where he did?
There's alot more but I do not want to have it lost by dealing with too much at once.

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Saturday, January 06, 2001 - 01:47 am:

Lapumo-There were greasy prints all over the V.W.and at least one palm(interior too) . The suspect was in the library waiting for Bates to come out(not in the alley waiting). There was a male and a female that did not go to Cap.Cross' (brilliant!) reenactment of 10/30/66'p.m.The RPD was DESPERATE to locate them and that "old Studebaker"that was seen parked on RIVERside Drive.An old car (probably the Stude'?)or motorcycle was heard starting around 10:30 p.m.the night of the attack.The librarian that I interviewed that worked at RCC at that period told me she thought that Ross -you think I'm going to say, maybe, Roland or Hunter ,"RH"-no sorry ,its Sullivan ,a little known suspect to some ,killed Bates. She told me he was absent the next day after the attack.Ross had a motorcycle and she ,and some others ,were convinced he was the killer.This librarian wrote a long letter to me about her suspicians concerning Ross and that he had been in a mental institute(CA is one big mental institute- ain't no big deal!).It's all so interesting and we can go even more crazy looking at more people and details-it's part of what makes this case so challenging - and ,as hard as they make em'!The 65/6' bronze Olds that was closely following (6:15ish)Cheri the day of the attack seems to have been forgotten.The killer was most certainly following Bates that day ,and at prior times,no doubt, looking for the "prime time".

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 01:51 am:

I came across Former Chief of Detectives Irv Cross' bulletin to law enforcement relative to the Bates 87'. He states that the "Victim suffered SEVEN[EMP mine]lacerations on her throat and death was due to hemorrhage of the right carotid artery.

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 01:21 am:

After reviewing the Bates autopsy report ,I will say that those "42 stab wounds" that have been mentioned aren't there!Bob Webster,a former Police Reporter for the Press Enterprise,seems to be of the same opinion. Jake,after careful scuritiny ,does not seem to agree with the big 42.I have several autopsy reports and stab wounds are clearly defined.I am open to any opinions on this.

I see the hand of a murderer(as in the autopsy reports I have with photos)not a school boy upset because his girlfriend broke up with him. This is someone who has killed before("She is not the first and she will not be the last.")and would continue to kill. There is not a shred of solid evidence that the local boy killed before Bates or after.

By Jake (Jake) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 04:35 am:

I'm reluctant to draw any interpretations yet, but I can say that the coroner's report indicates exactly what Graysmith described: three wounds to the chest area, one to the back, and seven to the throat. There are some bruises and lacerations to the face, as well as defense wounds to the hands and forearms, but nothing on the order of 42 wounds.

Hell. We're back to square one again.

"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 08:41 am:

Howard, I see the hand of a murderer, but one who didn't necessarily come prepared to kill. The knife was wholly inadequate to the task and it ended up taking three slashes to cut the victim's throat. Meanwhile, she had let out at least one scream that was heard by neighbors (if only those neighbors had reported it to the police!). I'm still leaning toward an attempted rape scenario.

By Sharkey (Sharkey) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 11:47 am:

Can anyone verify the story about the "two people searching around with flashlights" after the killing? Is this a fabrication or fact? If this can be proven, it rules out the Zodiac (unless you believe the Zodiac was a team). Also, does anyone know how much pressure was being put on the boyfriend? Was he officially name a suspect immediately after the killing or did that come some time later? The whole "Bates had to die" letter coming six months after the crime is a little odd. I am also taking it for granted that the boyfriend was considered a Zodiac suspect but cleared. Is that the case?

By Tom Voigt (Tom_Voigt) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 12:09 pm:

Sharkey, by asking such questions about the boyfriend you are making it clear you haven't read the Bates information contained elsewhere on this site. Please do, and you will answer your own questions.

By Sharkey (Sharkey) ( - on Monday, April 23, 2001 - 02:17 pm:

Sorry Tom, new to the board and the subject of the Zodiac. Found the link you were talking about on the bates page. I didn't read it earlier because I thought it was the "Update" link about the DNA testing currently being done which I had already read.

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Sunday, May 13, 2001 - 12:49 am:

We have had posters in the past question the "small" knife the Bates' killer used and that it was 'too small' and this shows that he did not mean to use this 'little knife' to kill Bates.

I finally got my PD report on the Gaul/Sharp 187(see my site were killed and found in an alley at the rear of 1138 S. Magnolia St.It was a full moon and around midnight. My suspect is a primer' in this horrific couple murder.

The autopsy report states that Doreen had"... 35 stab wounds [reads different than the Bates' Autopsy report of "lacerations"!)to the chest,6 stab wounds to the neck, and 9 stab wounds to the top of the head. Stab wounds were inflicted with -1/2" to 1" wide knife(s)with blades to 4" in LENGTH, having one sharp and one dull edge."(EMP mine)

The boy,James,sustained less knife wounds ,but the knife dimensions relative to his demise were the same.This is a 'small' knife- yet it dispatched 2 victims with great effectiveness!

By Sandy (Sandy) ( - on Friday, May 18, 2001 - 09:05 am:

Great job Howard! I walked that street many times,wondering where Cheri jo's body was found. The homes on the left side of the street going south on Magnolia, gave me a grave feeling.Most look like they have been empty for many years. Do you have the exact address where Cheri Jo was found? It had to be very close!

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Saturday, May 19, 2001 - 12:37 am:

Sandy:Do you mean Doreen Gaul's body? The Silverlake District in L.A. where the couple was found is a spooky area especially at night!The old dorm or Manor where Gaul and Bruce Davis stayed is still there and we walked thorough it-pretty nasty.

By Sandy (Sandy) ( - on Saturday, May 19, 2001 - 07:25 pm:

Thanks Howard, so the 1138 So. Magnolia was were Cheri Jo's body was found. Gee ,you would think I was still blonde!