PRINTS FROM LETTERS?


Zodiackiller.com Message Board: General Zodiac Discussion: PRINTS FROM LETTERS?

By Mike (Mike) (spider-wb013.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.192.153) on Monday, February 12, 2001 - 05:10 pm:

Hi-

The esteemed Jake and I were chewing over this issue last night, and I wanted to see what the "Board Members" know about it...

There is often talk of prints which were taken from some of the Z letters, particularly a July 1970 letter. (In fact, on one of the shows on Tom's video tape, there is what looks like a fingerprint on one of the pages of code.) However, whenever one talks of the "known prints from the case", the ones that come to mind are those from the cab and the Napa phone booth.

Does anyone know for sure just what prints exist from the letters, what the quality of them is, what part or parts of the hand they are from, how much confidence they have in them as actual Z prints, and whether or not they are used for exclusion (unlike those from the cab and phone booth, which are used for inclusion only)?

Does anyone know what the entire "ensemble" of prints is that Napa and SFPD uses for comparison against an unknown?

Also, if there were prints lifted from one of the letters and if they are definitely thought to be from Z, why is there so much ambivalence about including or excluding such people as Allen? Since Allen is still a viable suspect to this day, is that proof enough that prints from these letters are either mythological (unlikely, since they are discussed in the FBI files), of poor quality or that they are of unsure origin?

If exclusionary prints exist in the case, they have to be the best kept secret going. They certainly don't cause much of a stir. So if prints were apparently lifted from the letters, there must be some problems associated with them. Does anyone know what those problems are? One would think that they would be the closest thing to the Holy Grail in this case...

Mike

By Classic (Classic) (spider-mtc-th024.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.29) on Monday, February 12, 2001 - 07:56 pm:

Mike: I too have been bothered by the so called "fingerprints" in this case,especially the ones from the cab. How many thousands of prints could be in a taxi? I also cannot believe that z would be so incredibly dumb as to leave prints at the scene of a crime. I don't know what the witnesses meant by saying he was wiping down the cab. As far as the letters it would be interesting to know if any of the suspected prints and writing overlapped. If they did science would be able to tell which was there first.

By Jake Wark (Jake) (spider-mtc-th073.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.53) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 04:39 pm:

Mike wrote:
"Does anyone know for sure just what prints exist from the letters, what the quality of them is, what part or parts of the hand they are from, how much confidence they have in them as actual Z prints, and whether or not they are used for exclusion (unlike those from the cab and phone booth, which are used for inclusion only)?"

According to FBI, VPD, and SFPD reports, the list of letters with prints is as follows:

*"Latent fingerprints" (no quantity given) found on the Vallejo Times-Herald letter of July 1969

* "1 fgpt" on p2 of SF Examiner letter of August 1969

* "1 fgpt" on p3 of same

* "Latent impression lifts #1 thru 35" taken from Napa Phone Booth; four were still damp, indicating that the killer left them

* "Thirty latent fingerprints, three latent palm prints, and one latent impression," "Suspect's latent lifts," "latent prints that show traces of blood ... believed to be prints of the suspect" from Stine's cab. These were checked against Paul Stine (one match) and two suspects whose names have been blacked out.

* "Latent prints" on SF Chron letter of 10-13-69

* "Latent fingerprints" on SF Chron letter or 4-28-70. According to SFPD Insp, probably Toschi, "the latents were not made by persons handling the card after its receipt."

* "Latents" on envelope of same, "may have been made by personnel of the Post Office Department and Chronicle."

As a glance at the APB files will show, literally hundreds of suspects were checked against these prints. The most notable of these was Arthur Leigh Allen: SFPD requested that the FBI "expeditiously compare" ALA against two specific prints (from the 8-69 Examiner letter), and "further requested [the FBI] to compare Allen's fingerprints with all latent prints developed in the Zodiac investigation as time permits." The result: "3/1/91: The 2 latent fgpts ... not fgpts of ALLEN;" and "3/21/91: 38 latent fgpts not fgpts Allen ... remaining lat fgpts + lat imps compared avail fgpts Allen -- no ID effectd."

"Also, if there were prints lifted from one of the letters and if they are definitely thought to be from Z, why is there so much ambivalence about including or excluding such people as Allen?"

In a word, Robert Graysmith. The police reports leave very little room for doubt, and it's only the unending revisionism of subsequent buffs that continues this campaign of misinformation.

"Since Allen is still a viable suspect to this day, is that proof enough that prints from these letters are either mythological (unlikely, since they are discussed in the FBI files), of poor quality or that they are of unsure origin?"

It's proof enough that you can't always believe what you read -- in a book or on the internet. Really, Mike, are you going to throw in with RG in fear that they might actually print your guy?

"If exclusionary prints exist in the case, they have to be the best kept secret going. They certainly don't cause much of a stir."

Think for a second about who isn't stirring. The main sources of Zodiac information all have suspects, and if word got out that their suspects have been cleared, where would the book deals come from? Most people don't have the patience to sift through thousands of low-rez FBI scans, but that doesn't constitute a secret. A regular life, maybe, or an aversion to facts counter to one's theory, but the information is out there. Free. And it's an excellent bet that at least some of the prints are not only Z's, but they are good enough to exclude suspects with.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Jake Wark (Jake) (spider-mtc-th073.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.53) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 04:39 pm:

Classic wrote:
"How many thousands of prints could be in a taxi?"

Only thirty-four, according to the SFPD's internal report. Thirty were fingerprints, three were palms, and the last was a lower finger / upper palm. Of these, three or four show traces of blood, which I think is pretty significant in seperating wheat from chaff, or signal from noise as Alan would have it.

"I also cannot believe that z would be so incredibly dumb as to leave prints at the scene of a crime."

I can't believe that half the country would be so incredibly dumb as to be suckered by George W. Bush, and yet it happened. You might not believe it, but plenty of people do, and the facts back them up -- bloody prints were found on the cab and a nice juicy one was found on the Napa phone booth. Add to these at least a dozen prints found on the letters, and you have to start re-evaluating your notions about Z's intelligence, forethought, or criminal history.

"I don't know what the witnesses meant by saying he was wiping down the cab."

Maybe they meant he was wiping down the cab?

"As far as the letters it would be interesting to know if any of the suspected prints and writing overlapped. If they did science would be able to tell which was there first."

True, but Z could have left prints while re-reading the letter or while folding it to put it in the envelope.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Tom Voigt (Tomvoigt) (aca54339.ipt.aol.com - 172.165.67.57) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 04:43 pm:

Interesting that there is no evidence indicating any of the suspected Z prints match each other. Or did I miss it?

By Tom Voigt (Tomvoigt) (aca54339.ipt.aol.com - 172.165.67.57) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 04:46 pm:

Jake, if you are hinting that someone might be backing Allen in order to get a book deal, that's absurd. What publisher is going to invest in a suspect that has been cleared for 30 years???

By Jake Wark (Jake) (spider-mtc-th073.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.53) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 06:10 pm:

Tom wrote:
"Interesting that there is no evidence indicating any of the suspected Z prints match each other. Or did I miss it?"

The Feds apparently tried to match the prints against each other, but in their own words, "no identification effected." Out of a pool of only 16-30 prints, many of them partial, I'm not surprised. Nonetheless, unless a suspect cut off portions of his own fingers, they'd match him.

"Jake, if you are hinting that someone might be backing Allen in order to get a book deal, that's absurd."

Is it? The true story of the Zodiac case, ie, the story in which the killer is not a mastermind and has never been identified, has relatively little dramatic appeal compared to a sensational half-truth which offers up a "#1 suspect" neatly wrapped for closure. If you'd like, you can point out a single book, TV segment, or Website -- mine excluded -- that doesn't offer a suspect. Do you think Graysmith, whose next book bears the working title "Zodiac Unmasked," will reverse his previous babblings and admit that he was wrong all along about Allen, and that the cops were probably never even close? Fat frickin' chance.

"What publisher is going to invest in a suspect that has been cleared for 30 years???"

For that matter, what Website operator would?

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Tom Voigt (Tomvoigt) (aca6f7fa.ipt.aol.com - 172.166.247.250) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 07:43 pm:

I'm all for the idea that Zodiac was never a suspect. However, until Allen is properly disposed of, I'm going to keep collecting info on him. Exactly why that riles people up, I do not know.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (55.philadelphia01rh.16.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.17.55) on Tuesday, February 13, 2001 - 08:49 pm:

"I can't believe that half the country would be so incredibly dumb as to be suckered by George W. Bush, and yet it happened."

These were the bottom-feeders who sucked up the Penn angle and swallowed the hook.

By Jake Wark (Jake) (spider-wi013.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.197.23) on Wednesday, February 14, 2001 - 06:36 am:

Doug wrote:
"These were the bottom-feeders who sucked up the Penn angle and swallowed the hook."

Yeah, and I've still got a hole in my cheek. Apologies for the inflammatory political remark. Apologies also to Tom for dragging him over the capitalist coals. Anyone else I can alienate?

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Jake (Jake) (spider-wd032.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.193.162) on Friday, February 16, 2001 - 04:15 pm:

Tom wrote:
"However, until Allen is properly disposed of, I'm going to keep collecting info on him. Exactly why that riles people up, I do not know."

What exactly would qualify as being "properly disposed of," if not a print-by-print analysis of both of Allen's hands and all the Zodiac prints? A handwriting analysis? Oh, wait -- we already have one, and Bill Armstrong himself mentions in his ill-fated affadavit that there was no match. Short of DNA -- which may not even exist anymore -- I can't think of anything more conclusive to rule him out.

I suppose that what riles people about Allen and the campaign against him is the same thing that riles them about the cases against O'Hare and Kane -- they're perpetuated far beyond their legitimacy at the expense of truth and clarity.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Classic (Classic) (spider-tr031.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.201.186) on Thursday, February 22, 2001 - 11:14 pm:

Jake, concerning wiping down the cab for prints I recall reading,correct me if I am wrong, that the witnesses stated that they weren't sure if that is what he was doing and that it looked "staged".
As far as fingerprints, if he didn't use "protection"(waiting for the oneliners on this) why aren't there prints everywhere? As much care was supposedly taken to do the ciphers they should be loaded with prints. If he did use "protection" how did those few prints get there? You know far more about this subject than I do. I'm just trying to answer some questions in my own mind. After 3 1/2yrs of criminal law and law enforcement in college I have never seen anything like this case. Thanks.

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (79.philadelphia01rh.15.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.16.79) on Friday, February 23, 2001 - 03:25 am:

Classic, that's a very good point. Given the amount of blood there should have been prints everywhere, not least all over Stine's body itself. That ought to be the case, even if Zodiac actually did use glue (or anything) to cover his fingertips--the prints would simply have lacked definition.

By Alan Cabal (Alan) (spider-tp083.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.204.213) on Friday, February 23, 2001 - 10:51 am:

Jimmy Coonan from the Westies (a local Irish gang) used to cut the hands off guys he'd hit and freeze 'em so he could spread the prints around at other crime scenes. I've always suspected that the famous bloody fingerprint on Stine's cab came from a dead finger.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-wg064.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.196.49) on Friday, February 23, 2001 - 02:16 pm:

The best argument against the dead finger explanation is that Z never acknowledged it. I think if Z had come up with that one, he would have rubbed SFPD's nose in it. Even if he had the restraint to keep it quiet -- which he didn't -- where did this hand come from? He never mutilated his victims before (I know, I know, we aren't sure that he didn't actually kill 37+ victims, but come on).

As for the ciphers, if he was using a straight edge to line up the characters, then the prints would be on that, not the paper.

It's not too hard to get in and out of a cab without leaving prints all over the place -- try it some time. He'd have to touch the cab handle, of course, and there were prints there. He never had to touch Stine, just the shirt, and only the part that he kept.

I do recall that line about the wiping looking staged, but I can't find it anywhere ... anyone got a line on that one?

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Esau (Esau) (proxy2-external.scrmnt1.ca.home.com - 24.4.254.113) on Friday, February 23, 2001 - 04:50 pm:

I think that Z was smart enough to know that if he left severed fingerprints and the SFPD was thrown off by that he'd just let them stay on the wrong path thumbing his nose at them.

By Ed N. (Ed_N) (spider-tn022.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.207.52) on Friday, February 23, 2001 - 08:36 pm:

Actually, Jake, Z would have had to touch part of Stine's shirt tail other than what he took, in order to tear it from the shirt. In other words, one hand on one side of the tear, and one on the other in order to tear it. In any case, it wouldn't have been difficult to leave minimal fingerprints elsewhere in the cab.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-16.linkline.com - 64.30.217.16) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 12:50 am:

The teen witnesses ,according to the PD report, said that the man was in the "front seat of the Yellow cab ,mid to passenger side ,with the victim [poor view huh?]slumped partially over his lap. the suspect appeared to be searching the victim's pockets[for keys and wallet and the tearing of the shirt?](Witnesses never heard a gun shot).The suspect then APPEARED to be wiping (fingerprints)on the interior of the cab ,leaning over the victim to the driver's compartment .The suspect then exited the cab by the passenger side front door, also wiping with a white rag ,possibly a hankerchief.The suspect then walked around to the driver's side and proceeded to wipe the exterior of the left door area.The suspect then fled(walking)north on Cherry St.toward the Presidio of S.F."(EMP mine)The fingerprint sheets I have state "The latent prints that show traces of blood are believed to be the prints of the suspect. The latent prints from right front door handle are also believed to be prints of the suspect...The other latent prints many of which are very good prints, may or may not be prints of the suspect in this case." 10/19/69 Zodiac Homicide Cases. S.F.P.D.

I take the time to give this kind of info from PD reports for the benefit of those that don't have reports-I consider it my responsibility and put the do unto others into actuality. I type very slow and make mistakes so please bear with me-the mistakes that is!I just want to help the new people and those that weren't fortunate enough to have known someone that could have given them the reports.I would rather be in bed!

We see that those keen eyed teens were very good observers and noted not only the goings on inside the cab-in detail-but even the correct order of events and what it was the suspect was doing at all times!This nonsense that plays down their observation of the night's events ,etc.was somehow flawed sure didn't register with the reportee who says""Description[of suspect] was obtained from reportees[the 3 teens];whose observation point was DIRECTLY across the street (50 ft.) and UNOBSTRUCTED." (EMP mine)They were upstairs looking down on the gruesome scene.They gave the PD artist an excellent description based on their vantage point-and youthful good eyesight with good night accommodation (lots of visual purple)!

The one thing that amazes me is that we have homes on both sides of the street ;the police could be coming-or a car-and Zodiac is taking the time to tear,by hand, Stines shirt, rummage through his pockets to get his keys and wallet;and if that's not enough, he starts wiping down the interior and then exits the cab to wipe the exterior down.Do we say he feels invincible,has courage or is just plain loaded and/or stupid! Now there will be those that will come up with Z had a radio that picked up PD broadcasts-I am waiting for that one!

By Hurley (Hurley) (spider-wn074.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.197.184) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 04:04 am:

Why would the suspect need to clean prints off the outside driver's door? How and when did he have contact to this portion of the car? What is the scenario?

Did he know the cab driver and spend time talking with him before getting in and wanting to be taken elsewhere? What is going on here?

By Alan Cabal (Alan) (spider-wj073.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.198.53) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 04:40 am:

Thanks, Howard. That's very provocative stuff.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-mtc-th054.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.44) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 10:57 am:

Ed wrote:
"Z would have had to touch part of Stine's shirt tail other than what he took, in order to tear it from the shirt."

D'oh -- you got me. I was working under the premise that Z had cut the shirt with a knife or something, but as Tom pointed out, the DOJ report does specify that it was torn.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark.index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Jake (Jake) (spider-mtc-th054.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.44) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 11:03 am:

Esau wrote:
"I think that Z was smart enough to know that if he left severed fingerprints and the SFPD was thrown off by that he'd just let them stay on the wrong path thumbing his nose at them."

My impression (here we go again) is that if Z had left fake prints, he would have said something to the effect of "Yeah, I left prints, so what, you'll still never catch me." Instead, he said that he had never left any fingerprints.

On the other hand, he did mention "fake clews" in an earlier letter, so I guess it's a possibility. Almost anything is, in the final analysis.

--Jake

By Jake (Jake) (spider-mtc-th054.proxy.aol.com - 64.12.102.44) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 11:17 am:

Howard wrote:
"The one thing that amazes me is that we have homes on both sides of the street ;the police could be coming-or a car-and Zodiac is taking the time to tear,by hand, Stines shirt, rummage through his pockets to get his keys and wallet;and if that's not enough, he starts wiping down the interior and then exits the cab to wipe the exterior down."

To me, this is another example of the progression from the earlier blitz murders to the lingering and interaction seen at Berryessa. The Stine murder in and of itself was a surprise attack in the Vallejo style, but don't forget that Z spent time in the cab with Stine, maybe talking to him, but certainly gratifying himself with the knowledge of how the ride would end. Then there's the time spent in the cab following the murder. The case can be made that this attack was a temporary regression to complete the radian or counter news reports of homosexuality, but I think either way it meets the escalation pattern.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Esau (Esau) (proxy2-external.scrmnt1.ca.home.com - 24.4.254.113) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 12:26 pm:

Good point Jake. I also think that if Z was a sexual sadist the act of killing may not have been the ultimate thrill in the Stine killing. I think the ultimate thrill would have been after the killing. Getting trophies (Stine's keys and shirt), wiping away prints, leaving fake clues, the getaway, the anticipation of beating the cops again. If the crime truly replaces sex he might have hurried away instead of lingering at the scene. Kind of like when alot of women complain that after sex that most men will make an excuse to leave instead of lingering and staying to talk to their partner. By the way, I got a C in human sexuality in college so I'm by no means an expert.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-tj022.proxy.aol.com - 152.163.213.182) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 01:55 pm:

Hurley wrote:
"Why would the suspect need to clean prints off the outside driver's door? How and when did he have contact to this portion of the car? What is the scenario?"

Gregorypraxas has a hunch that these prints were left while Z leaned on the post as he reached in to grab Stine's keys. Under this theory, Z cut the shirt while in the cab, then got out and grabbed the keys, and maybe even the wallet, from the driver's side. Z was described as stocky, so maybe with Stine's body and his own girth he couldn't reach them from the passenger's side, or maybe it was an afterthought, but in any case it's a reasonable theory.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (249.philadelphia01rh.16.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.17.249) on Saturday, February 24, 2001 - 04:26 pm:

This sounds like a reasonable theory, but there's something about it that has never sat right with me. As an experiment, go out to your car and try reaching in from the driver's side to grab the keys. See if you're inclined to use the "post" to support yourself while doing so. If you're right-handed the natural posture is to lean with your entire right side against the car, supporting your weight on the car itself, while reaching in with the right hand. Unless your arms are only half the size of normal human arms it's quite difficult to grab the "post" and reach inside with your right hand to grab the keys.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-41.linkline.com - 64.30.217.41) on Sunday, February 25, 2001 - 01:28 am:

In his 11/9/69 letter Zodiac says :"As of yet I have left no fingerprints behind me contrary to what the police say[there were reports in the papers-including Vallejo and Napa, that he left prints] in my killings I wear transparent finger tip guards. All it is is 2 coats of airplane cement coated on my finger tips-quite unnoticiple & very efective...If you [Hurley!]wonder why I was wipeing the cab down I was leaving fake clews[English]for the police to run all over town, as one might say, I gave the cops som bussy work[southern expression]to do to keep them happy."

As with his "electric gun sight" and his shooting or'spraying'Jensen -Zodiac minimizes his methods(although he said in the same letter "I have been too clever for them")by not only informing the Editor what he uses,but he states "All it is"is cement!

We know that he opened the front passenger door (handle)and that the print report refers to it with a red circle .The drivers door post has the prints in blood.Of course ,the S.F.P.D. Print Sheet I have displays several other prints which "may or not be the prints of the suspect in this case."All is speculation as to which prints are passengers, mechanics and Zodiacs.

I don't think that Zodiac left any prints at BRS and LB.To say he left prints at the Napa phone booth is to violate his statement "I have left no prints behind me"(UP TO 10/11/69)due to his use of cement coating his tips.If Z had an accomplice that made the call then they could be his prints at the booth.Remember he wore GLOVES at the lake side attack and then goes to a phone booth and slathers everything with prints and throws in a palm(or partial) as a bonus to give them 'some busy work!'I don't know about that.

Anti detection books of that period state how to leave fake prints by using latex reverse image prints of the perp or use someone elses.One book jests and says 'or use some dead person's prints' with the latex method!Did Z do this?

Again,the PD Report says that the three witnesses stated that "The suspect appeared to be SEARCHING the victim's POCKETS[with the victim slumped partially over his lap]."This,I believe is WHEN the suspect takes Stine's wallet and keys.I will stick with the EYEWITNESS report,in this case, rather than a distant-year 2000+- speculation of someone that was NOT there!

The cab wipe down according to Zodiac was all chimerical.I am sure that he peeled off ten finger tip coatings that night to make the statement that he did!Nevertheless,every suspect should have a print check to be totally professional-as has been done.I am trying to get one done for my guy!

Incidently, from everything that I have read and studied,it was a "clean"crime sight when Toschi and Armstrong got there.Peterson's careful research revealed the same assessment.

By Hurley (Hurley) (spider-wn052.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.197.172) on Sunday, February 25, 2001 - 07:15 am:

How does wiping anything off leave "clews" behind?

Correct me if I'm wrong, and I'm sure you will, but I don't recall any witness to him, prior to wiping the driver's side door down, placing him outside the driver's door. According to Jake, GregoryX has a theory. Other than that, what reason would this suspect have for being on the driver's side door? Why even leave "fake" clues on the driver's door?

Wanna leave fake clues, put them where they would expect to find real clues. It just doesn't make sense.

Hurley!

By Douglas Oswell (Dowland) (153.philadelphia01rh.16.pa.dial-access.att.net - 12.90.17.153) on Sunday, February 25, 2001 - 07:55 am:

Here's a website (http://www.fingerprints.demon.nl/comparis.htm)that gives readers the opportunity to compare fingerprints for points of similarity. It underscores the extreme difficulty of making such comparisons when the source prints are less than perfect.

By Jake (Jake) (spider-wg054.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.196.44) on Sunday, February 25, 2001 - 09:34 am:

Howard wrote:
"This,I believe is WHEN the suspect takes Stine's wallet and keys.I will stick with the EYEWITNESS report,in this case, rather than a distant-year 2000+- speculation..."

Great point, but Hurley is on to something when asking why Z would be wiping the driver's side frame down. The only answer I can think of is a pre-crime interaction where Z might have leaned on the door: "Can ya take me to Presidio Heights?"

"Incidently, from everything that I have read and studied,it was a "clean"crime sight when Toschi and Armstrong got there.Peterson's careful research revealed the same assessment."

If you have the inclination, I'd love to hear about some of the documentation for this. Unfortunately, the SFPD incident report is my only reference point, and there's a rumor (I repeat: a rumor) that a former detective has said that none of the respondants were ever printed for elimination.

--Jake
http://members.aol.com/Jakewark/index.html
"This is the Zodiac Speaking..."

By Mike (Mike) (spider-wb071.proxy.aol.com - 205.188.192.181) on Monday, February 26, 2001 - 03:40 pm:

Howard-

Do you know where the bit in RG about the kids seeing Z lean his hand on the post between the front and rear doors (where prints were found) on the driver's side of the cab even comes from? It is not in the police report that I have. Did they actually report this? Or is this, to your knowledge, something else that was fabricated by RG?

Also, how is it that Bruce Davis, who undoubtedly has major case prints on file, has never been compared to the Z prints? I thought that I read that all Manson family members had been ruled out at one point. Wouldn't that presumably involve the cab prints?

Mike

By Howard Davis (Howard) (dsl-gte-10407-2.linkline.com - 64.30.209.40) on Monday, February 26, 2001 - 09:24 pm:

Mike-I believe that it was a deduction based on the fingerprint techs(especially Dagitz) and PD analysis.The position and angle of the prints(in blood)would lead them to the conclusion that the perp held on with his right hand to the driver's side window/door post as he leaned in to wipe down the interior as Stine was partly blocking the seat in that area.The hybrid factor could come in when they read the witnesses report that the perp was wiping down the exterior and interior of the cab(both sides);so based on the position/angle of the prints they came to their conclusion.I have never come across any report that says the teens saw the perp holding on to the door beam wiping the dash down.Of course, it would be good to know if there is one. This is a good project for someone who has some time. The witnesses still live in the same house that they witnessed the 87-at least that is my understanding.

How could Davis be "cleared"? On what basis-fingerprints? If that is the case why has not Allen been "cleared" his prints were "no match"! He was CII's boy.DNA?There has been no DNA analysis done on Davis. We had one going with a very influential authority in law enforcement and he said it was 'killed'.After a long struggle I got my papers back.Was it through handwriting analysis? Allen didn't match according to Morrill.Those letters have not yielded a match on any suspect to date.

We had a guy search CII's archives and Davis' file was not there! The search guy had never experienced that before.Both detectives that promised to locate his file were astounded to put it mildly!I was not surprised based on my original '73/4 info.The two main questions that keep coming up are :Was that Zodiac's real handwriting(a confederate's or a special falsification technique-there are many-Manson had a close friend that was a "master forger" FYI)and did Zodiac use the reverse image/latex print technique mentioned in anti detection books?Z said he left "fake clews"-plural;what were the others- besides wiping down the cab as though he had left prints?Was the taking of Stine's wallet another "clew"-it was a "robbery" oriented crime-so the police could "run all over town " trying to solve the cab robbery?Z also took the keys-more"clews' to puzzle the police?He makes reference to his disguise and that he would not say what it consisted of ;was that disguise another misleading clew?I just don't know if Davis' prints have ever been compared to the cab prints. I have tried different angles to find out,but to no avail.

By Howard Davis (Howard) (ont-cvx1-61.linkline.com - 64.30.217.61) on Tuesday, February 05, 2002 - 09:31 pm:

Severed fingers are mentioned in several(I said several not severed!) posts and the speculation that Zodiac could have used two severed fingers to leave 'fake clues' on the cab!I just obtained a 1978 interview with Tex Watson.He tells the interviewer that Manson had planned "...to choose three large cities on the West Coast... and...frighten and terrorize their entire populations,[sounds like what "Zodiac" was doing!]to literally scare the people out of their wits."Watson speaks of then making "demands" on the population(sounds like Zodiac always making demands).The really chilling thing is that Watson speaks of Manson wanting'severed fingers' and on one occasion Manson displayed "a hand" to a shocked follower!If you were Zodiac and connected to CM ,getting a finger to leave a false print/s wasn't much of a problem!Guess Manson just wanted to give others a hand.Another reference Watson made was to the "accidental"(Zodiac mentions his killings,in some cases,could look like "a few fake accidents,etc.")drowning death of lawyer Ron Hughes(a postcard with Tates name on it was found in the area where Hughes was found which Bugliosi thought strange) in 1970 and how that Bruce Davis was responsible.Watson says that Davis was responsible for "other deaths."I was also reminded of Zodiacs statement that "There are a hell of a lot more[victims]down there"[So CA].Just musings- the Board is filled with em!