Newseum Transcript 3- Final Part
"Newseum Transcript 3- Final Part"
[ Main ] [ Post New Thread ] [ Help ] [ Search ]
Table of Contents
Newseum Transcript 3- Final Part, Dunvegan, 13:29:17, 3/25/2001
Newseum Transcript (3 of 3), Dunvegan, 13:31:54, 3/25/2001, (#1)
Newseum Transcript (3 of 3)- End, Dunvegan, 13:32:57, 3/25/2001, (#2)
"Newseum Transcript 3- Final Part"
Posted by Dunvegan on 13:29:17 3/25/2001
ARRRRRRGGGGHHHHHH! (Whew! I hope you forgive me, but I just had to scream...having Ram-ear-itis for 2 days is really painful.)
Completely subjective remark: Having listened, at high volume and with headphones, to the Ramseys for two days...it is my considered, and entirely personal belief, that their voices sound evasive and G-U-I-L-T-Y.
Now, that out of the way...I'm posting below the last part. The tape suddenly started buzzing, and then no sound of recording followed...so, I'm assuming that either the sound reproduction machine had a barfing attack...or the tape is otherwise faulty. I tried several differend playback decks...and gave up.
Here, without further ado, is the last installation of "John and Patsy do Media"....
1. "Newseum Transcript (3 of 3)"
Posted by Dunvegan on 13:31:54 3/25/2001
MODERATOR: You know, you talked a little about the court of public opinion…I think, Amanda, you had a question about perceptions, initially?
STUDENT QUESTIONER #8: Right. I'm Amanda…I'm another student. Do you think the media overplayed your daughter as a beauty queen? And, how did the media's portrayal, with the pageant pictures effect the public's view of you as parents?
PATSY RAMSEY: Well, I think a lot of things…you know; timing, availability of video footage, all contributed to…that perception of John and me as parents…and also, enabled…the world…to…see…so much of JonBenet, vs. one little school picture. And I, I'm almost certain, that is why…you know, the world knows of her so much more than just a child who was killed somewhere and they just have one little picture available.
Uh…you know, I grew up in a…in a small town in West Virginia. Lived in Atlanta for years, and years, and years…it's a…kinda of a "Southern thing"…is the beauty pageant deal. I was involved in the Miss America pageant, it paid a lot of my college tuition with scholarships from the Miss America pageant…I'm gonna watch it this weekend on television. Um…but people have condemned that…for their own sick reasons. I mean, it is not unlike parents I know who get their…their eight and nine year olds up at the crack of dawn, and take them to an ice hockey rink, its 5 a.m., because it's the only time that they can get "rink time."
Um…it's not unlike little boys being…you know, dressed in…um…those wrestling outfits they wear. You know, I mean…it's just…JonBenet was a performer. She…we would have a dinner party, and she would come downstairs with a pom-pom on her head…and a tutu on, and say, "Watch me, watch me…I wanna sing a song for you!" You know…and everybody would have to sit there and…and watch…while she did her little thing.
And, I've gotten letters from mothers and parents that say, you know, "My little girl was the same way. Now, she's a vocal performance major at…XYZ University." It was just something to…grab a-hold of…um, …
JOHN RAMSEY: You know, she did a lot of things…and that was one of them. She also took violin lessons, and French lessons, we had her signed up to do rock climbing…our approach with the kids was we would like them to find one thing that they were good at, that they could be proud of themselves…and, they tried a lot of different things. JonBenet tried…she took dance lessons, and…and, uh…we have pictures of that, too…but the, the uh…pageant pictures are what got out.
And, um…she did…I used to tell her that it doesn't matter whether you're the prettiest or have the prettiest dress on…it's your talent that counts, and uh…cause, each one of these little events had a talent portion, and…she would always tell me, "I worked really hard on my talent, Dad." And, in fact, I wear this medal that she'd given me…in her last little competition. Where she'd won the overall talent award. And, she was just a very talented kid. She loved to get on a stage, and perform.
My biggest fear was that she was going to run off to Hollywood. And, uh…(laughs)
PATSY RAMSEY: Now, see…Burke is not like that. He came home a couple weeks ago, and saying that he thought he might want to try out for the middle school play…and I was like, "Wow! You know, this is…this is a big deal!"
And I said, "What part are you trying out for?" I'm thinking the lead, you know…he said, "Aw, I wanna be on the sound crew." You know. OK. (sounds disappointed) But, you know, kids are different.
Burke can do…you ought to see what he can do with a skateboard. You know…blows my mind. But kids have different…fortes.
JOHN RAMSEY: But…to be specific…it absolutely…portrayed a picture that was inaccurate…biased…opinions…I believe. No question.
MODERATOR: Let's take a look at one of the tabloid pages that we're talking about today. This one, you know we're talking about the words that are used. And this banner red headline says, "Little Beauty Sex Murder." Doesn't say "Violin-playing Girl Killed."…or something like that. That's deliberate…well, you know, obviously this sensationalism of…and then, then also it says, "Crime Scene Photos" in the Globe. And, these are photographs of the, of the crime scene and of her…which we're not going to show to you, but you get the idea of what's selling this newspaper.
It's being sold on the words: "beauty", "sex murder", and "six-year old". And that is the fundamental elements of the…of it. And, it brings up a question: the psychology of tragedy. And, you know, we've been exposed to so many murders, and so many things over the years that it seems to me that…that whether you look at OJ Simpson, or the…or the Kennedy death that there's some kind of American fascination with, you know: the last possible victim. The last possible person you would think could be accused of murder. OJ Simpson. The last possible person you think could run his plane into the ocean…Kennedy. The last possible person you could think would be killed in their own home…your daughter.
And, do you think…have you thought about that? And do you…is it, is it so much the…is it almost just the worst terrible situation that…you know, you say that many other people have been in the same situation…your case was singled out…I mean, you were right there in-between OJ and Monica Lewinsky…in a slot, almost…
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah.
MODERATOR: …"The Story!" And, do you think that what I'm just…is there any validity to what I'm saying about this tragedy that…this psychology of tragedy?
JOHN RAMSEY: It's…it's…I think you have to look at who buys that stuff. It's an element of voyeurism. Just like people that buy any other kind of pornography. The problem with the tabloids is that the headlines are visible to hundreds of millions of people. A very small fraction of people ever buy one of those things.
But…I used to…I used to do it myself! Walk through a grocery store, you know: "Two-Headed Baby Born in Kansas!"…you think, "Whoa!" You know? Could that be? You kinda know it's not true…but you…there's just this little element of, "Gee, I wonder if that's true?"
And, there's a survey taken…back…that 7% of the Americans believe that the tabloid stuff is true. You think, "Well, that's great." But, that's one out of ten…roughly. That's a big number that believe that stuff.
MODERATOR: Well, the problem I have is that when you see four in a row, and says "It was John!"…"It was Patsy!"…"It was Burke!"…"It was all of them!"…"It was none of them!" Those things can't all possibly be true.
JOHN RAMSEY: No, it's kind of…Burke's…what they figure was that Burke sells…and we actually have that on tape from one of the editor's of the tabloids. So…let's run more Burke stuff.
PATSY RAMSEY: He's nine years old…
JOHN RAMSEY: Our fundamental position with the tabloids, is look, if we as a society are going to permit this stuff…fine…you gotta take the good with the bad…freedom of press, and freedom of speech. But, are we going to let them attack our children? We let them attack our movie stars…and our politicians…but are we going to let them attack out children? For profit?
And, it's a form of pornography…and we allow it to be displayed…for all to see…at the Wall-mart…at the check-out stand. You know: why shouldn't it be wrapped with the brown paper wrapper, just like…a Penthouse magazine?
MODERATOR: Another question from our students…
How are you doing…Good morning. Phil (redacted) from University of Maryland, Public Relations student. I'm wondering if…if you're ever to be prosecuted, would you testify on your own behalf, for JonBenet's murder?
JOHN RAMSEY: Oh, sure. We asked to testify before the Grand Jury…and we were never called. We've never been concerned about a trial, I mean, we don't want to go through that horrible, uh…disgrace. Uh, but we've never been afraid of the outcome: it would be a massacre. And uh…the good news is a Grand Jury looked at a one-sided presentation…for 13 months, and said, "No." And it takes about that much evidence to indict someone…you know. Would we want to go through that…horrible embarrassment? No. Would we? Sure. Cause we know the outcome. It would be a…in fact, I've said…I'd love to have it televised, if they ever did that…I'd love for the public to see what's been done to us.
MODERATOR: Patsy, we have a number of media who are here, covering this event, and they're going to go back and write stories, or file stories for broadcast, and…I'm wondering what you would tell them as they start thinking about how to put their stories together, and what you would tell my students who are going to be scrutinizing their stories, about this, tomorrow?
MODERATOR: Write your story…write your own story here!
PATSY RAMSEY: Write your story! (laughter) I'm glad you came to class today, I hope you learned something!
MODERATOR: Nothing else?
PATSY RAMSEY: You know what? The proof's in the pudding! Let's see what happens tomorrow. Right?
JOHN RAMSEY: I'll tell you what our…our thought process is…what we've been trying to do for, literally for three and a half years now, is to get…objective…experienced investigators…on this case. We've hired…uh, one fellow who's investigated 300 homicides, works on full-time. There's only so much a private citizen can do.
So…how do we get the government to do the right thing here, from our perspective? How do we get them to investigate…if we get them…if we get the government to look at…uh, the leads we have…with one tenth of the energy that they've looked at us…we'd be thrilled. So, how do we do that? The only way we can do it, is through public pressure. Our government responds to public pressure. The police respond to public pressure. And, so…if we can get the public…and the media to start saying, "Wait. Something is fishy, here."
You know, there was another girl who was attacked the same way, nine months later. Same M.O., same…you know, a carbon copy of…the only difference was that it was interrupted…thankfully…before potentially a murder took place. Who knows what the outcome would have been.
And…bring pressure on the police to do the right thing. That's what we hope to do. And, that's the only…there's no…you know, we've got 18,000 police jurisdictions in this country, all of which are autonomous…authorities, in their local communities. There's no higher authority. We can't go to the next…you know, to the Division level, and say, "Would you please investigate this?"
MODERATOR: That would be the "good media"…looking at the role of the media…
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah! Right! And…and not…I don't care…we've told people that we've…we've told the police: "OK, if we have our…if we could ask for one thing…take two of your detectives and say, OK…you go and investigate the Ramseys, keep investigating…YOU two, assume the Ramseys are innocent, and go look at…uh…
PATSY RAMSEY: Everything else.
JOHN RAMSEY: Everything else.
MODERATOR: In your book -
PATSY RAMSEY: We'd be thrilled!
MODERATOR: - you detail leads that remain…untracked…
JOHN RAMSEY: As far as we know. We don't know what's going on. So, if we can bring that kind of awareness to the surface…and bring public pressure to bear on the bureaucrats, which the police are, that's our only hope.
PATSY RAMSEY: The other thing is too…I mean, I'm not…sure I understand why the media wasn't all over Governor Owens like a cheap suit…when he made such an outrageous comment. You know…insinuating -
MODERATOR: Repeat the comment for the…you mean…
PATSY RAMSEY: Well…he implied that he knew that we were guilty! You know…
JOHN RAMSEY: - Despite what the Grand Jury concluded.
PATSY RAMSEY: This is the, you know, I mean I don't know how many times before we said, "God, can't we go to the State Attorney General? Or, Janet Reno? Or, somebody? And, then…here the Governor comes out (!) I mean, even if we are guilty…you know, he should not…be the justice system! To come out and say, (lowers voice to imitate Owens) "I have decided they're guilty!"
MODERATOR: You had the same kind of thing with the mayor?
JOHN RAMSEY: Sure. In the very beginning…
PATSY RAMSEY: YEAH!
MODERATOR: (garbled)…"our town is safe…there is no killer on the loose"…that sort of…
JOHN RAMSEY: A lot of people say that was the turning point…
PATSY RAMSEY: That was the pivotal…
JOHN RAMSEY: …from that day on…and we, said…we were asked…what would you ask the people of Boulder, and we said, "Be aware that there's a killer out there." And, the mayor came out and said, "Oh, no…there's no killer…."
PATSY RAMSEY: (whispering in staccato counterpoint, in the background, imitating the mayor:) "Don't worry…don't worry…don't worry…don't worry…."
JOHN RAMSEY: …the subliminal message is there.
MODERATOR: Yeah. And these are the people…in charge of the law enforcement infrastructure…
PATSY RAMSEY: Exactly.
MODERATOR: …that you, responsible to the people…
PATSY RAMSEY: The media, to me, should have been saying, "Whoa! Wait a minute!" Who gave the Governor the right to do…you know, is this where we're going as a country? To allow our publicly-elected officials to do this? But, you know it was, you know…sensational…or sexy...
JOHN RAMSEY: Well, there's been a lot of investmentt in our guilt.
MODERATOR: Let's get to our students. Yes, you're on.
STUDENT QUESTIONER #9: My name's Danielle (redacted) and I'm not a student in Mr. Morrison's class…I'm a little further along. I'm in the law class right now, and studying something similar to what is sounds like your son is studying…and, we're studying the difference between public figures…and public people and private people. Do you consider yourselves to be public people, and where does the line get drawn?
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah…we don't consider ourselves public people. I've always wondered why there was a distinction…why should the law look at citizens differently? A citizen is a citizen, under the law. In fact, that law, is a real problem…it's very protective of the media because they can, in effect, make you a public person…thereby protecting themselves from…the normal libel and slander laws…if you're a public person you have to prove it was done with malice. And, that's a very difficult…uh, threshold. I've always wondered, why should there be a difference? A citizen is a citizen, under most of our laws…why is there a difference in a class of citizen, relative to the media?
So…are we considered a public figure by the courts? Probably…absolutely, yes. And I think that was probably…you know…we became that when we did our little CNN interview, in the beginning. Had I known…I mean, you can't know…but if someone who had been through this whole process, and took us aside and said, "Wait a minute. You've got to understand how this works."…It would have been difficult…because we couldn't have spoken out. I mean, the only public vehicle to speak out, is through the media. Really. I mean…how do you…how do you communicate today? It's gotta be through the media.
Well, as soon as you do that…you're a public figure, therefore…uh…you have no…
PATSY RAMSEY: You're exempt from…
JOHN RAMSEY: …fundamentally no rights…protection under the libel/slander laws…which is what the media will tell you IS your protection.
So…I think it's a huge problem in our…structure. I don't think there should be a difference…public people…you're a citizen…period.
MODERATOR: Sarah, do you want to…
STUDENT QUESTIONER #10: My name is Sarah (redacted) and I'm actually one of Blake's students. But, you were talking earlier about how you've thought about this a great deal…how do we fix the problems of the media. How would you, from your perspective?
JOHN RAMSEY: Well, I don't…I don't have a good answer. I've mean, I've thought about it a lot…it's run the gamut from…you know…in the beginning I thought this would just be a public broadcasting system and…that's it. We realize, well, that's…not gonna work…the whole reason that we have freedom of press is that…is to keep the government accountable. So…long term, that was a bad idea. I think it's a…ultimately, the media…the bad elements of the media have to be held accountable. Financially. In court. That's ultimately the solution. I don't…uh…I…say about me what you want…but if you violated…me under the law…I expect accountability. I think that, pure and simple, is the way you address…you know…the bottom end of the problem.
PATSY RAMSEY: I think another way is…and this really didn't dawn on me until a journalist said, "Well, hey! If a police officer tells me something…am I allowed to report that? He should be a credible source." And I said, "Well…I guess so…you know…it seems to me like the problem is that the people in the justice system, or any kind of law enforcement, should not be allowed to have such a open dialogue…for communications in the press…if they do, you know.
The Chief of Police of Atlanta can come out and say, "This happened. We know that, you know, ten people were killed in an office building on this day." And, that's it. I mean, there shouldn't be the ability for a cop, like Steve Thomas, to have these…you know, under the table, deep throat conversations with…I don't care who it is…whether it's Tom Brokaw, or Tony Frost from the Globe. That's a …
JOHN RAMSEY: That's a violation of public trust….
PATSY RAMSEY: I think…a big…big thing. Journalists can just say, (changes voice) "Wh-h-h-a-t! Here's the Chief of Police and the lead detective! He's the Governor…why shouldn't I repeat that!" You know, I think that is probably where the biggest…there SHOULD be a law…somewhere, somehow eliminating that…scenario….
MODERATOR: Question here.
STUDENT QUESTIONER #11: Hi. Good afternoon. My name is Aton (redacted) and I'm a Freshman journalism major at Maryland. You spoke earlier about communicating through the media…I just wanted to ask, in your opinion, what's been the most effective mode of communicating your side of the story? Has it been through your book, or through appearing on shows, just 20/20…just what do you think has the best effect on letting the public know…you know…your side?
JOHN RAMSEY: Well, the book we wrote, so that there was a…one document that was complete…unedited…uncut, that would be around for anybody that wanted to read it…forever…what we've enjoyed…in terms of communicating, the most, is live television. And that's…because you can't be cut. And, it's embarrassing for the host to cut you off…you're trying to make a point.
It also becomes a "numbers game." I mean, the book…you know, a good book in this country will sell, you know…the average book sells a very few numbers…it's about 60…65,000 books that come out every year, or something like that. And, the average book sells about 6,000 copies. A best-seller will sell about 200,000 copies…so, you reach 400,000 people. You go on the Today Show…you'll talk to 7 million people. You do a Barbara Walters' Special…and you'll talk to 20 million people. And, so that becomes a bigger…for us that was the issue…you know, for three years…hundreds of millions of people have heard that we were evil people, that killed our pa-…killed our child.
How do you, how do you make a dent in that? And, um…
PATSY RAMSEY: I've always said in these litigations, that part of the settlement should be equal…inches. You know, if there have been…
MODERATOR: And, in the same place!
PATSY RAMSEY: Yeah!
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah! Right!
PATSY RAMSEY: If there have been a hundred and fifty…you know, banner headlines that said, "Parents Did It!"…or, "Son Did It!"…or, "The Dog Did It!"…or, whatever. There should be…I want a hundred and fifty headlines, same size, type, same color that says, "Parents Are Nice People"…or, something! (laughs)
JOHN RAMSEY: Now…the problem is…
PATSY RAMSEY: I'd put them outta business!
JOHN RAMSEY:…it, it works on me…is that the first headlines…the first impressions stick with you. I was watching a biography about Ricky Nelson the other night. And, I'd always thought that Ricky Nelson was cooking up cocaine in the back of an airplane, it caught on fire…and it crashed. That was the initial headline. And, here, twenty years later, in this biography…I find out that that's not true at all. That the NTSB investigated it, and that was totally false! Yes…it was reported…but…I thought, "Oh, my God! That happened to me!" I thought, "That's what happened!" And I was…I had no…I wasn't aware of any follow-up information that came out that said, "no…that's not at all what happened."
And, that's the problem in our situation. And, there…and we…I've always said we can find, convict, and…uh, uh…execute the killer…and there'll still be 15% of the people walking around there, who still believe the parents did it.
MODERATOR: Another question?
STUDENT QUESTIONER #12: My name is Dena…I'm a Junior, a journalism major at Maryland. And, your last question kind of, um…leads into mine, about the television. The TV moment that struck me most was when I saw you on Larry King Live with the detective…I don't remember his name…
PATSY RAMSEY: Steve Thomas.
STUDENT QUESTIONER #12: Oh, OK. He…like outright accused you of murdering your daughter. As I was watching it…I remember like, feeling the tension…you know…on the set; it felt very tense and awkward and I was wondering how you felt doing that, and when you were going into that interview, did it turn out the way you had expected it to? Or, did you feel like it…
JOHN RAMSEY: Well…
PATSY RAMSEY: (loudly…in a "Don't go there, Pal!" tone) You could have cut it with a knife! It was SO tense in there! (laughs)
JOHN RAMSEY: There's an old axiom that you should never argue with a fool in public. And, there we were. But, um…he was, he was our primary accuser. And, um…if we're going to address this head-on, you know…we've got to address him head-on. It was, for me, it was the last place in the world I wanted to be. I couldn't hardly stand to be in the same room with the guy. All the horrible things he'd done to my family. But, um…that was not a pleasant evening.
Did it turn out the way I'd hoped? Um…I guess that's in the eyes of the viewer. I don't know…what our frustration has been, with…with a guy like that is that…uh, um…he, he is…can be…he's a poster child for all that's wrong with the justice system. And, unfortunately, it came to bear on us. And…uh…we'd hoped that people would…would see that. As we so clearly saw it.
PATSY RAMSEY: You should have been there during the commercial breaks. (John laughs in the background) You know, at least…at least when you're on the air, everyone is kinda doing something…you know…I mean, when it was silent…I mean, even Larry King, was like, "Well…uh…how about those Braves?" And, mean Steve Thomas was fidgeting…and lookin' at his watch…and you know…I mean, I was closer than I am to you…and he was just…you know (laughing)…it was…
Voice from the audience: You can tell us!
PATSY RAMSEY: …heh…
MODERATOR: …Somewhere beyond weird…
PATSY RAMSEY: Way!
MODERATOR: One more student question, then we'll turn to our reporters.
STUDENT QUESTIONER #13: Hi. My name's Chris. I'm a Sophomore at Maryland, a journalism student. My question's more about your role as parents, more than media figures. And, my question is: How do you deal with the ever-present negativity imposed by constant accusations, and suspicions, but still mourn, as parents, the loss of your daughter? 'Cause that gets seems to get lost so easily in the shuffle. Like, this is the most important part. That's not really addressed that much.
JOHN RAMSEY: You're absolutely correct. The one fact that everyone knows about us, for sure, is that we are parents of a murdered child. And, and that has been totally lost. And I could tell you, after losing two children now, that you never get over that. A hole in your heart that never goes away. You learn to live with it. (sigh) Um, but your life's changed forever. It's a…you don't laugh the same…you don't enjoy things the same as you did.
What's been interesting, and thankfully it's given us a lot of faith in humanity, is that…uh, people that have approached us, when we're out…you know: traveling or grocery store, or whatever…100% of the time…not one exception…100% of the time have been kind…sympathetic…apologetic. And, people say, "How is it to go out in public?" And I say, "It's great! People have been wonderful to us!" And, and that's without exception. So, that's the good side we've seen…in dealing with this.
And, the only people who've really been cruel to us…visibly…have been the Boulder Police and the media.
And…(laughs) I hate to say "never", 'cause that'll give somebody the challenge to be…be the first. But, we have never…no one has ever come up to us and been anything but kind, and…uh, compassionate. And, that makes us -
PATSY RAMSEY: Thank you. Thank you for your question.
JOHN RAMSEY: - feel good.
STUDENT QUESTIONER #13: You're welcome.
MODERATOR: Let's turn to our reporters. Tell us who you are, and where you're from.
MIKE WALTER: I'm Mike Walter, I'm with USA Today Live. I've heard you mention Barbara Walters, Larry King, Katie Couric. I want you to draw a distinction, if you can, about the local media. Do you find that the Atlanta television stations are treating you a little bit better than the Denver TV stations? Or, is there any distinction?
JOHN RAMSEY: Um…I don't think so. I mean I think…it's…it's more of a tier…um. See, what I think…what I think happened in this was that the, um…the local…media in Colorado was getting information from the…the police…and, and drawing conclusions. And then, the national media was picking it up…as facts. So, they were kinda doing the investigative work for the national media. And, that's what kinda got replayed nationally.
The…I think…at, at…at the level of local television stations, and local newspaper…I mean, the Denver Post has been pretty…uh, pretty heartless…frankly. Uh, and…and not objective. Where…where the Atlanta Constitution has been…probably more…more objective in the things that they report.
With the exception of the "lavish lifestyle" we "had to give up"…I thought that was kinda of a cheap shot.
PATSY RAMSEY: I mean, is…is there a difference between the mindset in Georgia, and the mindset in Colorado? I know that I would say, "Definitely. Yes!" And, I think a lot of that is due to the fact that the media…has just…of how it has been reported in Colorado.
I mean, if you look at…you know, polls…and this, that, and the other thing…I mean, Colorado (very emphasized, loudly) HATES us! You know? Um…
JOHN RAMSEY: Not everyone. We get some wonderful letters from Colorado people that say, "I'm embarrassed by what our Governor has said…and what has happened to you. I'm ashamed of our state."
And we…and we knew wonderful people in Colorado.
PATSY RAMSEY: (sigh) Yeah…
JOHN RAMSEY: And, so…you can't…you can't categorically say that. But…
PATSY RAMSEY: But, by and large, the media out there has kinda manipulated the…the…balance…you know…
MIKE WALTER: Do you feel…I know you (garbled)…this will be my last question, because I know other people want to ask…. But, I heard you talking about leads that you've developed…and, and the police. Do you find that when you come to them with leads, that they just "poo-poo" it? Or….
JOHN RAMSEY: Pretty much. Pretty much.
MIKE WALTER: How frustrating is that?
PATSY RAMSEY: Oh, very frustrating!
JOHN RAMSEY: Extremely frustrating, because where…where else do you take them? I don't know. I mean…ah…
PATSY RAMSEY: I mean, I wish we could go to Atlanta homicide, and say, (assumes rushed, hushed voice) "Here! Look at this! You know, do something with this." Or, New York City. Or, LA. Someplace that…that does this a lot. But, all we have…the Boulder police…are…IT! You know. That's….that's….(slaps her hands together)…"The Wall!" That's it. That's all you have.
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah…and, and our frustration is the lack of openness…
PATSY RAMSEY: - Expertise.
JOHN RAMSEY: … and objectivity. I don't…they can investigate us for…20 more years, if they want…if they would just investigate the rest of the leads as well….
PATSY RAMSEY: And, they'll tell you that they've done that!
JOHN RAMSEY: …objectively.
PATSY RAMSEY: They'll say, (assumes dopey-sounding voice) "Oh, yeah…we know all about that…we've done that." But…
JOHN RAMSEY: …but, it's done with the objective of dismissing the lead. Their…their strategy in the beginning was…in fact, they said it publicly…that, uh…eliminate the defenses. In other words, here's the group of suspects; eliminate everybody and see who's left. And, of course, we were…the ones they wanted to have left.
So, uh…that was their strategy in looking at leads.
PATSY RAMSEY: I mean, we've heard that they would…you know, interview you…and say, "OK, where were you Christmas Night?" (assumes silly voice) "Well…I was at home with my Mom…." "OK! Check. You know. Take his word for it." (laughs) "He was home…or, you know.
JOHN RAMSEY: Yeah. We've looked into a number of the alibied, so-called, interesting leads that weren't valid at all. That were accepted by the police…as…
PATSY RAMSEY: I mean, I've heard…on the few snippets that I have watched of some people being interviewed…I said, "I don't know what else they said…but, I know THAT is a lie." You know. Well…whatever -
JOHN RAMSEY: But, it is frustrating…absolutely.
PATSY RAMSEY: Really frustrating.
CONTINUED IN THE NEXT POST...
2. "Newseum Transcript (3 of 3)- End"
Posted by Dunvegan on 13:32:57 3/25/2001
MODERATOR: A third of the murder cases aren't solved. I mean, realistically…since the FBI was…denied…early involvement, in this case. I take it, from what you're saying, it would have been better…had they, hat they been there. But, since it happened…you know, what are the chances that this is really ever going to be solved?
JOHN RAMSEY: Well, we've been told…I've asked these investigators that are working on it…independent of the police…who have lots and lots of experience. Collectively they've investigated like 500 homicides. I said, "How ya feeling? You feeling pessimistic, optimistic, or just kinda…neutral?" And, they said, "No…we're optimistic. This case can be solved. We gotta have the information the police have…or the cooperation of the police. But, it can be solved."
PATSY RAMSEY: One of the DAs, who was on the case when Lou Smit was there…told us, "If we had had…" and I can't remember whether he said, "two more weeks" or "two more months"…He said, "We were ALMOST there." He said, "We were so close, I could TASTE it." I'm not kidding you!
PATSY RAMSEY: He said this. And then, you know, Romer steps in…yanks the rug out…takes everybody off, and puts in three Special Prosecutors. He said, "We were CLOSE!" I mean, he said, "I could TASTE it!" How close is that?
MODERATOR: Um hmmm (affirmative.)
PATSY RAMSEY: Questions from our reporters?
SCOTT STREAMODERATOR: Yes. Hello, my name is Scott Stream, with the Chronicle of Higher Education. I was interested…you have spoken a little bit about accountability, and how you thought that the news organizations…really, the only accountability they had was financially. Interested to see what you thought about, a couple weeks ago the New York Times ran a retraction about…responding to their coverage in the Wen Ho Lee case, and acknowledging that they had been inaccurate in some of that reporting.
Is that something that you would like to see, or would accept, as a form of accountability in this case…if that turned out that way?
JOHN RAMSEY: Well, I think that's a….that's part of it. I mean, certainly saying, "I'm sorry." Yeah. Absolutely. Or, "I was wrong." And, doing it in an equal…level of…exposure. Um…make it across…it doesn't really matter…it doesn't take a lot of…uh…uh…extract a lot of…pain, frankly, for the damage that was caused.
PATSY RAMSEY: I mean, the way these…you know, these publications…and you probably are…I'm not telling you anything you don't know…is that, you know, the possibility of being sued for libel and slander is a line item in the cost of doing business.
######## TAPE ENDS HERE ###########