Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Murder of JonBenet Ramsey

A Possible Witness

Also in February, a private therapist came forward and told the press that one of her clients claimed to have crucial information about the death of JonBenet Ramsey.

Mary Bienkowski, a licensed marriage, family and child counselor, said her client had given the police the names of individuals who were witnesses in the killing of JonBenet as well as ongoing sexual and physical abuse of other children.

She claimed that she has treated the client for over ten years for trauma arising from having been the victim of sexual assault, and had information that a widespread sex ring could have been behind JonBenet's murder.

The following day, the Boulder Sheriff's office released a statement that claimed that the woman making the claims had a long history of making false reports, and as such, her claims regarding the Ramsey case had not been taken seriously.

However, Alex Hunter pushed for a full investigation, saying witnesses who might have memory problems from past abuse should not automatically be discounted. The FBI also indicated that they had interviewed the woman, who is now in hiding.

Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner would later tell reporters that three detectives were working full-time to try and verify the woman's information, but declined to make further comment. Ramsey attorney Lee Hill, who also represents the woman, said his client acknowledged making reports to local authorities, but claimed that they had not been followed up and denied that her reports were false.

"They refused to believe her," Hill said. "This is part of the reason she is seeking a more objective law enforcement agency's review."

In early March, after months of speculation, Alex Hunter formally announced that he would not be seeking re-election as district attorney, saying that the Ramsey investigation had influenced his decision to step down after his seventh term. He told the media that he had done everything he could with the evidence he had to work with. "I think this case may well be resolved," he said, "But not anytime soon. The investigation is still active and leads are being followed up as we speak." Hunter said he plans to remain involved with the case after he leaves office. "JonBenet's picture is on my desk to remind me of what this case is about, and it has been for three years," he said. "It's about her death and about hoping sometime to do justice for this little girl."

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