Betty Lou Jensen Message Board: David Faraday and Betty Lou Jensen : Betty Lou Jensen

By Ryedawg (Ryedawg) ( - on Thursday, November 16, 2000 - 01:12 pm:

Out of curiosity how did Graysmith make up about Jensen? It seems like every time I see something interesting about the case in Graysmith's book it turns out it was a lie or he stretched the truth or whatever.

My point is if Graysmith is correct in saying Jensen could of been stalked for awhile before her murder and she knew Darlene, there could be a direct link to the two. Was Jensen and what's his name who Ferrin saw killed be her mysterious follower? Or did Ferrin and Jensen see something together possibly?

If they did have relationship what was it like, were the good friends, causal friends or did Darlene just know her from school?

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Thursday, November 16, 2000 - 05:46 pm:

Darlene Ferrin and Betti Lou Jensen were about five years apart, one was on her second marriage and had a kid, while the other was in school, so it's unlikely that they did know each other; that's my understanding anyway. And if Darlene actually did see her stalker kill someone, she apparently never told anyone who, why, when and where.

Ed N.

By Oscar (Oscar) ( - on Friday, November 17, 2000 - 12:24 am:

My theory is that they were all members of a satanic love cult, and that Zodiac was a disgruntled pimp trying to flex his muscles. Makes as much sense as any theory I've heard lately.
Pass the eggnog, I need to get hammered!
Oscar the Irrefutable

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Monday, January 01, 2001 - 03:28 am:

Bobby Ramos has stated that Darlene told her she knew both Faraday and Jensen.She has been filmed and questions asked.I hope to post on my site. Pam, Darlenes' sister told me that Darlene told her she knew Jensen. Pam also told me that she and her mother dropped Darlene off at a party on the night of the 1968 87'near where J/F were killed. Of course, I am fully aware that Pam has a credibility problem. The white 60'Chevrolet Impala(Davis owned one which also was a 60'white)which was seen 12/20/68 was in the crime area before J/F got there so this could show she was not stalked and that it was random as in the LB 87'.I have an interest in that Plymouth Valiant(the Family had one according to Ed Sanders)that stopped and backed up when a couple had car trouble right near the crime area.The couple was able to get their car going and lost the Plymouth.We know that Manson and certain of the Family were in Sacramento for 2 weeks at this time!According to Watson M looked distracted and acted very strange and he had never seen M act so detached and secretive,etc.They drove all over the area several times and then suddenly left the area and Davis flew to London after the 20th. A former fam' member told me he saw Davis in Berkely in Dec 68'.FYI

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Sunday, January 07, 2001 - 02:10 am:

Ed.N-I have located the B.L. Jensen Report of Autopsy dated 12/21/68'.It seems Zodiac was truthful again, as he says ,all he had to do was "spray" his bullets just "like a garden hose". The idea that the hit pattern was as 'tight as a silver dollar' seems to be false.Since I'm such a slow typist and there is such detail and medical jargon ,I will just give some highlights."Multiple bullet wounds to the chest and abdomen ;there are 5 bullet wounds of entry on the right side of the back:three on the posterior chest cage and two over the right lower posterior LUMBAR(EMP mine)areas.From up downward the first is located in the fifth ICS 3&3/4" right of the midline; the second is in the 8th ICS 5 1/4th" from midline;the third in the 9th ICS at 1 1/2"from midline ;the fourth in the tip of the right 12th rib at 3 1/2"from the midline : and fifth over the crest of the posterior right iliac bone and 5 1/2" from the midline; there are three exit wounds;Heart: A bullet wound penetrates right to left through both atrium;Lungs: There are three through and through bullet wounds corresponding to the three bullet wounds of entry on the right posterior chest cage and one bullet wound through the left lung in line with the wound through the heart ; they are associated with extensive hemorrhages of both lungs; a bullet wound penetrates the liver;a bullet wound penetrates the right kidney-this should be enough as it shows the pattern of wounds,etc.If we read Zodiac statements carefully we can see that he did not, at any time, claim extraordinary or superior marksmanship; thats Zodiacologist fantasy time!As a matter of fact, he even seems to downplay the whole thing by telling the PD and the public how he made a gun site of just some tape and a pen light(found in books/mags'no big deal)and all(note all) he had to do was "spray them"(note Zs little lapses I have been pointing out-He only "sprayed" Betty Lou not David, so he kind of uses a figure of speech-like "over by Washington st. and Maple st." or "Christmass" to indicate J/F 12/20/68' 87'.

By Esau (Esau) ( - on Sunday, January 07, 2001 - 08:19 am:

Hi Howard. When the medical lingo is translated it looks like the autopsy shows that some of the bullet wounds are in the mid and lower back. The right lower lumbar area is right about at your beltline. The 8th and 9th intercostal spaces are at about mid-back. The illiac bone is in the pelvic region. This shows that some of the bullet wounds are in the lower back and not the upper back.

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Sunday, January 07, 2001 - 12:48 pm:

Howard: THANK YOU VERY MUCH! You are too awesome!

Now, the autopsy report proves beyond the shadow of a doubt what I have asserted all these months that both Graysmith ("tight formation") and Penn ("shot group the size of a half-dollar") were both WRONG about Z's marksmanship on LHR. That means they were both incorrect, which is another way of saying that they were full of it. They were either fed mis- or disinformation, or, more likely (based on their collective track record), just made it up and the Z myth machine has just perpetuated it.

As I have stated before (and will continue to do so), and the autopsy report that Howard quoted from (thank you again, Howard!) shows it to be true, Z was nothing more than an incompetent putz when it came to firearms. He just pointed and shot, and was not an incredible marksman by any stretch of the imagination. When he wrote that he sprayed them, he was correct. The bullet holes were located all along BLJ's back from about the fifth rib to her iliac crest on the right side, not in one small formation.

Now that I have been vindicated, let's put this myth to rest.

P.S. Howard, thanks a bunch!

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Sunday, January 07, 2001 - 03:50 pm:

Ed N. says "As I have stated before (and will continue to do so), and the autopsy report that Howard quoted from (thank you again, Howard!) shows it to be true, Z was nothing more than an incompetent putz when it came to firearms. He just pointed and shot, and was not an incredible marksman by any stretch of the imagination."

I wouldn't go quite that far, myself. The facts of Lake Herman Road don't prove that Zodiac was an incredible marksman, but neither do they disprove it.

By Kevinrm (Kevinrm) ( - on Monday, January 08, 2001 - 12:04 am:


You crack me up! You continue to hold on to this theory as tenaciously as Carl and his RH theory. Yes, it proves Graysmith exaggerated ( anything new here? ). But to say that it proves he was "nothing more than an incompetent putz when it came to firearms"? Wrong! Acting as if your point has been proven does not make it so.


Kevin M

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Monday, January 08, 2001 - 11:09 pm:

The autopsy report proves that Z was not an "incredible marksman," that much is absolutely certain. He did not hit BLJ in a small, concentrated area, and that is the only thing that might have proven he could shoot the wing off a gnat at 1,000 yards.

Since the autopsy report (and her death certificate, btw) proves that Z shot her with a spread of shots, we can discount the "expert marksman" B.S., since I bet that anyone with reasonable eyesight who can point and shoot a gun can hit a running target 5 times out of 7 at a distance of 10 feet at night.

In any case, excluding BLJ, please point out any other instance in which Z demonstrated "expert marksmanship" in any form. If such evidence cannot be produced (and I know it cannot be as far as the known Z crimes are concerned), then we cannot with certainty say that he was an "expert marksman."

Kevinrm wrote:

But to say that it proves he was "nothing more than an incompetent putz when it came to firearms"? Wrong! Acting as if your point has been proven does not make it so.

Quite right, it doesn't make it so, but then, the burden now is on anyone who claims Z was an "expert marksman" to produce such evidence; it is no longer on me to disprove it, because I think that all of the facts now favor my position. To wit:

David Faraday: shot point blank behind left ear, probably contact wound;

Betty Lou Jensen: shot with a spread of five out of seven shots across her back at a distance of 10 feet;

Darlene Ferrin and Mike Mageau: shot multiple times in a car at point blank range with no means of escape (A.K.A. "shooting fish in a barrel"), and the victim closer to the gun (ie, Mike) Z failed to kill despite shooting him in the face, neck and chest;

Cecelia Ann Shepard and Bryan Hartnell: a gun was used to gain power over them, tie them up and stab them with a knife, and Z failed to kill one victim, while the other died apparently because of the time lag in getting her to the hospital;

Paul Stine: shot in right zygomatic arch, contact wound.

Please explain to me how any of this can possibly demonstrate "expert marksmanship." Quite the contrary, these facts describe to me someone who was't that good with weapons at all.

P.S. Kevinrm wrote: You continue to hold on to this theory as tenaciously as Carl and his RH theory. Carl never had proof. I have listed the facts regarding my theory above.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Tuesday, January 09, 2001 - 10:07 am:

Ed, there's a fundamental difference between stating that "we cannot prove that Z was an expert marksman based on the evidence at LHR" and saying "the circumstances at LHR prove that Z was not an expert marksman."

By Edward (Edward) ( - on Tuesday, January 09, 2001 - 10:10 am:

Ed N,

I would have to agree that this does not demonstrate "expert marksmanship." But neither does it show he was an "incompetent" shot. Many police officers, well trained in firearms, miss at close range when confronted with a stressful situation.
We also don't know that Zodiac hit Betty Lou Jensen "...with a spread of five out of seven shots across her back at a distance of 10 feet." The two missing shots may have been warning shots to scare them out of the car.
One thing's for sure: the tight grouping on her back, widely reported and accepted as a fact, has been shown to be erroneous.
I wonder how many other things we are all wrong about?

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Tuesday, January 09, 2001 - 10:39 am:

Gentlemen: I admit that I exaggerated a bit by stating that I thought that Z was an incompetent putz. Personally, I believe that to be the case, and you are correct, Douglas, there is a fundamental difference between those two statements. Regardless, I think that the facts show that Z was no marksman, and further, demonstrate that he had no particular skill with weaponry of any sort, based on the fact that he attacked six out of seven victims at extremely close (less than 3 to 4 feet) range: two contact wounds (in case he missed because he was unskilled?), shooting two in a car (failing to kill one even though both were dead-to-rights)), stabbing two (but eventually killing only one because of the time and distance factors required to save her life). Even then, BLJ would still be considered close range at an estimated 10 feet.

Edward: you are correct that the two extra shots might have been warning shots, but after looking at the evidence, I get the idea that Z missed BLJ with two shots. The two fired into the car I would think count as warning shots.

In any case, all exaggeration aside, since we have only the facts to go by, I think it is safe to assume that Z was incompetent when it came to weaponry.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Tuesday, January 09, 2001 - 01:34 pm:

Well, consider the case of Ted Kaczynski, who was undoubtedly an expert shot with a rifle, but, by his own admission a "poor pistol shot." I'm fairly certain that whatever his level of expertise, Zodiac didn't just order a pistol, load the magazine with ammo and go out killing people. He must have had some kind of feel for weapons.

By Jake Wark (Jake) ( - on Tuesday, January 09, 2001 - 02:40 pm:

And, as Kevin has pointed out, the fact that he owned several handguns indicates that he was at least comfortable around them, knew where to buy them and the ammo, etc. I, too, dismiss the "marksman" theory, but I also doubt that he was a total novice.

Let's remember, though, that there are a lot of people who are into guns (and knives, and whips and chains, etc) but whose expertise goes no further than collecting and toying. Simple ownership doesn't necessarily imply competence.

"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 01:40 am:

We hold these truths to be self evident:Zodiac NEVER at any time claimed superior shooting skills;he bragged that he was "crack proof,"etc.,but not that he was a 'crack shot'.He actually downplays any purported astuteness in the usage of weaponery by the use of ALL-"all I had to do was spray them[her]".He further debunks police statements about the light on LHR and his ability to shoot the teens by telling the public that he simply taped a pen light(he later called this his "electric gun sight") to the barrel of his gun(something that is found in books/mags')and describes how he shot at the the black dot in the center of the projected circle of light"all I had to do..."The use of a reference to a "hose"to describe the "spray" of bullets futher shows his lack of interest to prove he was the northern CA version of Buffulo Bill or Annie Oakly!Zodiac wrote of wiping out a school bus full of children by shooting out the front tire and pick the kiddies off as they exit the bus. This may imply the use of a rifle,but he later said that if the police thought he was serious about taking on a bus in the manner he described then they deserve to have "holes in their heads". Of course, we all know of the super peachy keeno method he thought would do the deed and it wasn't firearms!So at LHR we have no proof of outstanding marksmanship ability. At BRS we have a "turkey shoot"(more like giant Condor shoot!) and the boy survives! Z did try to shoot M in the head("when I fired the first shot at his head") as he had done with F in 68', but his aim was "spoiled"(!) by the thrashing of legs.What is amazing Z has to come back and shoot again, but he still fails to kill his intented victim at very CLOSE range(maybetis failure caused him to go his optomertist as we see him with glasses on the Stine 87'!).In his Sept. bash at LB he simply held a gun on the couple . The somewhat faulty manner in which he held the gun inspired H to try and grab it, but S was fearful so he dismissed the notion. He says"I always felt the way he [Z]handled the gun I could have gotten it."So we really don't have PI Magnum here either.The Stine hit was easy -it was CLOSE range plus!The glasses did the trick!Note the link though to; Faraday,Mageau(attempted head shot)and then Stine with the tendency to do head marks.Thats about it as to shooting ability and gun handling or mishandling!Now, Z informs us that his guns could not be traced and that he purchased at least one of them from a mail order catalogue.Nothing remarkable here.We can deduce that Z bought guns and had enough interest in them to buy mags'that featured weapons. He was familiar with the type of ammo used at the various crime scenes.He may have implied a knowledge of rifles as per picking the children off at a distance(?).If the Z killed the San Diego seaside honeymoon couple in 63'then he used a rifle there-a .22. A hand gun was used in the 64' 87' and if it was Z then no special firearm ability was demonstrated on that one.Anything any of us believe that Z was really capable of in the aforementioned area is speculation pure and very simple!Now, I know that Z spelled words correctly and in other places incorrectly(and grammer was a shifting sand bank too!) to probably throw off analyists. We know he claimed a disguise and that when he wasn't doing his thing he looked entirely different.So who was the real person behind so much subterfuge?Crack shot or crack pot?All we can do is keep at this remarkable case- and this IS one area we can use the word remarkable with assurance-Z did manage though clumsely, to create one of the most baffling mysteries of all time equalling the famed Jack the Ripper case, where we have Ripperlogists still arguing over whether or whether not Jack displayed surgical skills-sound familiar?

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 01:41 am:

Excuse the errors!

By Pamhuckaby (Pamhuckaby) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 04:25 am:

Yes I have a credibility problem! Why believe the sister, she can't possibility know anything. Darlene knew Betty Lou and David. They use to go to Mr. Ed's in Vallejo and so did she. Also Betty Lou babysat for Darlene, until her father made her stop because he did not like Darlene's life style. And that is where I came in and was babysitting. Also David worked 1 day at IHOP. Darlene did state to Bobby (who has passed away) that she knew those two kids, and she was not going to Lake Herman Road. If you remember the piece of paper found next to her phone, it had Mr. Ed's phone number on it. Also has anyone ever wondered why after 2 hours and 45 minutes into there date that evening there car was spotted parked a certain way, 35 minutes later another way, 10 minutes later the third way. They were on there date for hours and 54 minutes. Why would they move there car three times? Unless they were also going somewhere else close by.

The shooter was also a very sloppy shooter. If you look at Darlene's Autopsy report the killer was a tall man of 6 feet or better. If he wanted Mike dead he would of been dead. Where did Mike and Darlene go after she picked him up at 10:55 P.M.? Can anybody answer that other than myself? Or at least what I believe.

By Esau (Esau) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 07:20 am:

What does 64' 87' mean?

By Bruce Monson (The_Adversary) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 07:45 am:

Hello Pam!

I have been wanting to talk with you. Could you email me privately at please.


Bruce Monson

By Pamhuckaby (Pamhuckaby) ( - on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 08:51 am:

Bruce e-mail is on its way.

By Eduard Versluijs (Eduard) ( - on Thursday, January 11, 2001 - 12:33 am:

Hi Pam,
Can you also email me privately at
There is something I want to ask you.


Eduard Versluijs

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Friday, January 12, 2001 - 12:58 am:

Has Vern, or Mrs. Jensen for that matter -or anyone in the Faraday family, verified that Betty Lou babysitted for Darlene Ferrin?I spoke to Dean Ferrin and he didn't confirm that bit of info.I am open though for any info on this subject.It probably doesn't matter anyway, as it would seem that Betty Lou was a random victim. That white four -door Chevy Impala was in the area long before Faraday/Jensen decided to go to LHR.I am also waiting for the 'Zodiac snuff film crew' at LB to be verified!There was only ONE set of footprints leading away the LB victims and this is fact -not fancy. Hartnell never indicated any filming or a cameraman and neither did Shepherd in her brief statements to Mrs. Land,etc.That would have been something they would have recounted for sure!Zodiac was probably on drugs that day and that snuff film nonsense is borne of the same spirit.I'm not referring to any one person-just the "story"(and that's what it is) that's out there.

By Tom Voigt (Tomvoigt) ( - on Friday, January 12, 2001 - 01:41 am:

I interviewed Virginia Jensen some time ago, but she never mentioned Ferrin being a babysitter for Betty Lou. This is the first I've heard of it, so I think it is probably just a rumor.

By the way, I heard Bobby Ramos died recently. I believe she was the one who quoted Darlene as saying she knew the victims at Lake Herman Road.

By Bruce Monson (The_Adversary) ( - on Friday, January 12, 2001 - 10:19 am:

Tom, you never cease to amaze me!

By Sandy (Sandy) ( - on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 12:04 pm:

Tom I heard the same thing, that Mrs. Jensen never heard of Darlene until after she was killed. Who do we believe? I was also told Darlene knew Stine, Cecilia Shepard, and Cheri Jo Bates!Do you have any knowledge on Darlene knowing any of the victims other than Mike M.?

By Tom Voigt (Tomvoigt) ( - on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 01:04 pm:

There is no evidence I am aware of that indicates Darlene knew any of the other victims.

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 10:29 pm:

While Darlene may have known a cab driver in SF, he cannot possibly have been Stine, because Stine began working for Yellow Cab only in August 1969, and was not a cab driver when Darlene lived there. So where did this story originate, as well as the others that Darlene knew all the early victims?

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 12:13 am:

Esau-The 64' 87 refers to the murder of the couple in the Lompoc/ Santa Barbara area near a beach(water!). They had been shot with a .22 and there was an attempt to burn them("By fire" said Z).The perp ,full of anger that he did not have successful relationships tried to burn or destroy the very people that reminded him of his severe lack in this area (my pysch'eval'-no charge!))For the astro crowd- it was during the Last Quarter Phase of the moon-which according to my astrologer consultant, is of astro' significance to a follower.The good detective that worked on this case has posted excellent info -click "key words". This detective is a prime example of a truly sincere law enforcement officer as he is still vitally concerned with the case-quite noble I'd say!

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 12:36 am:

There is NO solid evidence that Darlene knew her killer either!I have gone over the PD reports numerous times and I have spoken to people that could have known any pertinent info in this area and they don't have any solid proof either!Is there a chance she knew her killer?When one believes that a mind is like a parachute -it's no good unless it's open-then I say yes.I should be the first to affirm Darlene knew her killer, as I have testimony from Christina (whom I and det. John Smith interviewed on Jan. 1st 2 years ago),Darlene's younger sister and the last in the family to see Darlene alive(about 45 mins +)that the man she saw "arguing" with Darlene looked exactly like Bruce Davis and that she had seen the same man in the daytime on at least 2 occasions. She saw Darlene talk to this man also.I want truth to prevail NOT mine or anyone else's theories ;and proof that D knew her killer is LACKING.

By Howard (Howard) ( - on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 02:21 am:

EdN-I sent the full autopsy report on Jensen ,and those pictures. I hope you can see that lady soon!

By Ed N. (Edn) ( - on Wednesday, February 07, 2001 - 10:20 pm:

Thanks, Howard, I got them safe and sound. This is the first time I've been online since Friday (work and all that fun stuff... and this is supposed to be the slow season! LOL). I hope to see her on the weekend, but if it's as busy as last, we might miss each other. Not to worry, however...

By Mike_D (Mike_D) ( - on Saturday, December 22, 2001 - 10:04 am:

Don't think I've noticed it before but the new picture of Betti Lou on her page bares an uncanny resemlance to Darlene Ferrin.I wonder if they were related.Is this evidence Z stalked his victims or am I just imagining it?
p.s.I also think C.j.Bates and C.Sheppard bare a more than passing resemblance to one another but no where near as much as Betti lou and Darlene...

By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Saturday, December 22, 2001 - 11:12 pm:

I thought it more logical to continue this thread here, where we've discussed it before...

How could Z shoot BLJ in the back when she's lying on the ground on her right side? Did he kneel down and plug her that way? It makes no sense; he must've hit her five times while she was still running.

By Ray N (Ray_N) ( - on Sunday, December 23, 2001 - 11:02 am:

The autopsy report indicates bullet hits on the right side of her back, which doesn't jibe with the position of the body. I can only speculate that she was still alive and trying to get away after she fell. Maybe she tried to get up and ended up on her side. Or maybe Z turned her over partially to have a look at her.

However, it has been reported that the VPD believe that she was felled by one shot, (although maybe she took a few steps before she fell?) You know, it's hard to see things their way in the face of all this circumstantial "evidence" to the contrary. It's possible they are basing this on shell casing positions, information which we do not have. I wonder if we could get it?

I know that things don't always seem the same when you are sitting in front of your computer vs. being out in the field. So, I just went out and put a chalkline down on the ground which was 28.5 feet long, and then stood at one end and looked down its length. What an amazing difference compared to how I imagined it in my mind's eye. This distance is ridiculously short. It got me wondering, "How long would it have taken BLJ to cover that distance running for her life?"

I ran it five times in sneakers. I'm 5'11" and 180lbs, but I didn't have any adrenaline kicking in, so I figured maybe we'd have run it in very close to the same time. Anyway, the results surprised me:

#1 - 1.98 secs
#2 - 1.91
#3 - 2.10
#4 - 1.79
#5 - 2.04

Some of this variation has to be related to me pushing the button on my timer, so basically we're looking at about 2 seconds. Assuming she took off running when DF got shot and that she was standing next to him (or reasonably so), being hit 5 times running means Zodiac would have to turn and fire 7 shots in 2 seconds scoring 5 hits, at night, using an improvised sighting system. I hesitate to offer an opinion on the feasibility of this without trying it out for myself first, but I predict I would be impressed with myself if I could do it.

Moreover, now that I have those times, I don't really think that a chase ensued either. I know I said that on the other post, but after having actually looked at the distance, there's no way I would have moved an inch, I would have just stood there and fired away. A chase would have been over with before it got started. Of course, there is the possiblility that he fired less times than that when she was running and then fired one or two from above her after she fell (but then, of course, we have to start asking, "Where's the powder?")

It's perplexing. It occurs to me that maybe Z fired 3 shots in 2 seconds scoring one hit which felled her. Then he could have shot her 4 more times while standing above her. The powder question is still troubling, though. Maybe the texture of the fabric of her dress was not conducive to collecting powder. Also, Graysmith writes about frozen grass rustling in the breeze. I wonder if this is just a made-up mood-setting statement or if it really was windy that night? Wind may have played a role in the lack of powder deposits.

Once I do the shooting tests, maybe more light will be shed on this. I'm going to do them in the daylight first and then repeat it at night. Does anyone know exactly what material her dress was made from?


By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Sunday, December 23, 2001 - 03:26 pm:

Who says she was running? Zodiac might have forced her at gunpoint to turn around and then fired the shots at her. We simply don't know exactly how events unfolded in the case; the best we can do is speculate.

By Ray N (Ray_N) ( - on Sunday, December 23, 2001 - 04:45 pm:

When an airplane crashes, the NTSB always gets up in front of the cameras and the reporters ask, "What do you think may have caused the crash?" The answer is always, "We are initiating an investigation into the cause of the crash and refuse to speculate on it at this time." That is because they haven't done their investigation yet and have absolutely no information upon which to draw the requested conclusion. After they investigate, they have evidence. Then it's not called speculation anymore, it's called the "probable cause".

We're not speculating, Douglas, we're using the evidence that we have available to try to determine a probable sequence of events. Do we have all of the information? No. Does that mean we're dead in the water? No.

The actual events which transpired will be supported by the whole body of evidence as well as by fragments of it. As I see it, we have loads of evidence here, with the only major missing piece being the shell casing locations. Granted, that's a significant void, but we can still make some logical inferences and work around it. After all, the police have that information and they reached some conclusions, so maybe we can build on those.

Unworkable theories will be revealed by the same evidence. Such as "Zodiac might have forced her at gunpoint to turn around and then fired the shots at her." The two vics were 28.5 feet apart so they weren't shot at the same time. She wasn't dragged to where she ended up or we'd have heard about that. She wasn't shot from the area of the car unless DF was already down. He'd have either interfered or taken off otherwise. If Zodiac was 28.5' from the car shooting BLJ, DF had to either be shot already or smoking a Camel by the car waiting for Z to come back and execute him. Since DF therefore must have been shot first, that means she knew what was coming next for her, so how could she have not been running? There is no credible scenario which I have either heard or thought of which does not have her attempting to flee.

Are you saying what we're trying to do can't be done?


By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) ( - on Sunday, December 23, 2001 - 10:22 pm:

Not at all, Ray. But we're so locked into the Graysmith account of things that it's sometimes difficult to conjure other scenarios. 28.5 feet is less than ten yards. That's about five paces for a running human being; maybe six for a teenage girl, depending on whether she's athletic or not. Unless Zodiac simply turned around after killing Faraday and then fired at her from that range, hitting her five times, in the dark, he would have had to chase her; she would have run several more paces by that time.

Or, she could have done what females by nature do in a situation like that; namely, freeze up and go passive.

So far as speculation is concerned, I think my position is well known here. I believe that speculation is both necessary and vital, so long as it doesn't cross the boundary between the plausible and the absurd.

By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Sunday, December 23, 2001 - 11:16 pm:

I've often pondered the following scenario: as soon as Z herded them out of the passenger side of the Rambler, he saw that BLJ was attempting to escape, probably urged on by DF. Knowing that DF wouldn't escape him due to proximity, he simply grabbed hold of him (probably through the window), and began shooting at BLJ first, spraying and hitting her with 5 out of 7 bullets as she began to run. He then turned the gun on DF and shot him in the head. That would, incidentally, mean that Z was shooting with his left hand.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 02:59 pm:

Hey folks,

Don't have a lot of time right now for a lengthy post with Christmas and all, but rest assured that I will have plenty of contributions to this discussion in a couple of days.

Ray, OUTSTANDING WORK! How can I be of assistance to you? I have competed in both silhouette shooting and combat shooting (though not as much as silhouette). What you are doing is fantastic. I should probably conduct an independent study of my own; then we'll be able to compare notes.

5 shots in 2 seconds, ranging from 1' to 28'? Certainly not impossible, and could easily account for the sizable pattern of shots (they were not tightly grouped as Graysmith wrote).

The fact that he used an "improvised sight" (flashlight on barrel) tells us a couple of things. 1. It would have to have been a .22 semi-automatic pistol that has a barrel upon which to affix such a devise. In other words, it couldn't have been a piece of junk like a Phoenix Arms or something; there is no way that I can think of to attach a flashlight to such a weapon. My guess is that the weapon Z used at LHR must have had at least a 4" barrel that was very possibly of the "bull barrel" variety.

2. You're right, Z would have to have been shooting at BLJ in a "combat shooting" mode/stance. However, it wouldn't have been that much different than silhouette shooting, in my opinion. BLJ, it seems to me, was running directly away from Zodiac, in essence creating the straight line that you are referring too. Well, as you know, a typical shooting range (for handguns) is laid out in rows starting at 25 yards, then 15 yards, and finally, 7 yards. This last falls closest too the 28' line that you're referencing. A moving target is not too difficult to hit if it is moving in a straight line away from you. Heck, one could practically do this without any sights (combat shooting) even at night.

However, as you have correctly pointed out, sitting at the computer is one thing and being in the field is another. When I have time, I'll go "into the field" and conduct the same type of recreation that you are planning. What types of guns will you be using? What are all the factors that need to be taken into account?

Any other members of the board willing to conduct their own research and post the results? Any suggestions from anybody that would help to authenticate the research?

Merry Christmas everyone! See y'all in a few days.


By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Monday, December 24, 2001 - 10:46 pm:

Hmm... maybe another trip to LHR is in order to attempt a field test... I won't be using a gun though (unless Z or Bigfoot is there).

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Tuesday, December 25, 2001 - 09:26 pm:


I've never been to LHR at night. Could you tell me if there is any light out there? Obviously, I know there aren't any streetlamps or things of that nature. However, is there any ambient light such as the kind that may originate from the city of Vallejo? I know it was a new moon on the night that BLJ and DF were murdered, but this doesn't necessarily mean that the location was pitch black.

Also, I wonder if Zodiac's headlights were on? It seems pretty clear that DF's were not. I mean, who parks on a "lover's lane" and leaves their headlights on? However, if Zodiac left his lights on, especially if they were aimed toward BLJ and DF, this obviously constitutes a tactical advantage for Zodiac.

BTW, I still don't think that a sizeable group of shots necessarily means that Z was a poor marksman. There are a number of things which still have to be considered, in my opinion, before such a conclusion can be made. Heck, I'd be surprised to learn that Elmer Keith could accurately fire seven rounds at a moving target in roughly two seconds at night. That's why taking this test "into the field," as it were, seems rather important. Until that has been accomplished, statements like my last one are purely speculative. However, it doesn't behoove me to move into the field without first gathering as much data as possible.

I'll gladly welcome any and all comments, facts, considerations, and ideas from those who are willing to provide them. Of course, thanks to people like Tom V, most of what needs to be known is already at my fingertips. Nevertheless, I'm sure there are those whose opinions and comments on this subject are more esoteric than mine. I'd love to get feedback from some of these people . . . ehem, Tom? I'm a firm believer in the axiom, if you're going to do a job, do it right or don't do it at all. Makes sense, doesn't it?


By Ed N (Ed_N) ( - on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 02:36 am:

Scott, there's always some light there, no matter the time of night or whether the moon is out or not; some nights it's darker, others it's more well lit. The refinery is only a short distance away, maybe a mile as the crow flies, and I believe it had just opened in late 1968. Also, the lights of Benicia and Martinez are pretty bright too, so there's no telling based on what I've seen there in the last 9 years just what it was like 33 years ago. But, I'm willing to bet that back in 1968, while it might not have been as well lit at night as it is today, it wasn't pitch black either.

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 02:41 am:

Ed N,Sandy and I were out on LHR on the 20th at around 11:00 PM and it was dark,but not so dark that one could not shoot and hit the victims.It had been raining that evening so there were clouds.The door of the wagon was opened and I assume a courtesy light went on(I am on vacation and don't have the report-I do know the heater was on)so if this is true,then there was a small amount of light for the shot to Faraday's head.Zodiac claims to have used,as you know, a pen light taped to his weapon ,so this was his basic source of light for the direction of his shots at Jensen.There were two hunters(I hope Ed will give his story about what one of the hunters did the night of the murders)that night and it is assumed there was some viewing ability or they wouldn't be out there hunting Racoons!

It is a bleak and dark area and all I can say is what a place to die!As we sat there in Ed's White 60' Chevy(just kiddin-he has a Rolls!)with the lights off ,it was as if I could see the events on that night 33 years ago and I could imagine the sound of the reports and the two young lives that were so brutely taken by the madman called Zodiac.There is no glamorous setting whatsoever on cold dark LHR and especially what was done to Betty and David.The only real darkness was in the mind of Zodiac.

By Howard Davis (Howard) ( - on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 11:43 am:

Let's go out there and try it.I will be the shooter-we'll take turns!This time I am taking a camera.

By Scott Bullock (Scott_Bullock) ( - on Thursday, December 27, 2001 - 05:18 pm:

Ed, Howard,

Thanks for the information. Pen light or not, Zodiac would still have been able to "spot aim" at a silhouetted figure, just as I had imagined.

I've only been to LHR twice and both times were during the day. It certainly is an eerie feeling visiting those spots; both nostalgic and disheartening.

Okay Ed, two questions:

1. Do you really own a Rolls?

2. What's the story about the hunter? Come on, dude, please tell?


By Scott_CT (Scott_Ct) ( - on Wednesday, July 17, 2002 - 08:36 pm:

Mike D said here a long time ago...

** Begin Quote - Don't think I've noticed it before but the new picture of Betti Lou on her page bares an uncanny resemlance to Darlene Ferrin.I wonder if they were related.Is this evidence Z stalked his victims or am I just imagining it?
p.s.I also think C.j.Bates and C.Sheppard bare a more than passing resemblance to one another but no where near as much as Betti lou and Darlene... - ** End Quote

The resemblance in those photos is remarkable. Almost too remarkable to be a coincidence. It seems to argue in favor of these victims being selected vs. chosen at random. If so, it throws a different light on these crimes.

Of course, you can get very different looking photos of the same person, but the resemblance here is very strong. Size and shape of face, bone structure, nose, etc.

Thoughts anyone?

By Tony (Mahalo) ( - on Thursday, July 18, 2002 - 05:38 am:

Scott_CT: I mentioned this on the MB last year. Was BLJ mistakin' for Darlene on the first hit, thus having a Z accomplice deliver a patterned outfit for DF to wear on 7/4 so the killer would recognize her. A little out there but just a thought. Ever see the movie 'Blow Out', where a crazed John Lithgow goes on a serial rampage just to cover up a single hit? Creepy!

By Mike_D (Mike_D) ( - on Friday, July 19, 2002 - 06:37 pm:

Or Scott and Tony it could mean Zodiac was attracted to a certain physical type.Like
Bundy was.He'd almost certainly have had to do some stalking ahead of time...