Geraldo Rivera - Thursday, May 15, 1997

"Geraldo Transcript - KBallard"
Posted by jams on Nov-06-00 at 11:41 PM (EST)

CNBC News Transcripts, May 15, 1997

Copyright 1997 CNBC, Inc.
CNBC News Transcripts


May 15, 1997, Thursday 6:12 PM

LENGTH: 1069 words





On to Boulder now and JonBenet Ramsey, the latest. The authorities in Boulder today confirming what we have been reporting for the past few days, that the police did receive DNA test results in the JonBenet Ramsey murder case this past Tuesday. As their news release--here, depo cam--as the news release says, There will be no additional information provided on the content of the--of the test results by the Boulder police.' So they have it, but they're not going to tell us what it says, at least not yet.

This statement also confirms in the second paragraph what Kim Ballard told us on the program last night. She is, you know, the Arizona woman who claims to have had an affair with John Ramsey. The release reads, quote, "Boulder police Detectives Melissa Hickman and Jane Harmer were in Tucson, Arizona, this week to conduct a prearranged interview with Kim Ballard. This interview had been arranged through the Tucson Police Department.

However, after waiting four hours to conduct the interview, Ms. Ballard declined to be interviewed. This was the second attempt by Boulder police to interview Ms. Ballard. There will be no additional attempts to interview her."

According to Detective Commander John Eller, quote, At this point we would have to consider anything Ms. Ballard may say as suspect. We don't plan to set up other interviews with her.''

Let me zoom right out to--to Boulder. Seated there, Barrie Hartman, the editor of the Boulder Daily Camera--actually, in Denver is where the res--Barrie, comment about Ms. Ballard? What do you think?

Mr. BARRIE HARTMAN (Editor, Boulder Daily Camera): You know, I'm--I think I'm a lot like the people of Boulder: I don't know what to think. I don't know whether to believe her or not. I'm sure that what she has said--had to say has damaged John Ramsey considerably. But we just don't know what to believe.

RIVERA: This release then updates other elements in the case, stating the police are still requesting a fifth handwriting sample from Patsy Ramsey. But let's go back to those all-important test results from the DNA. NBC's Steve Handlesman has this report.


The DNA results were telephoned to investigators in Boulder from Cellmark Labs in Germantown, Maryland. After the Christmas murder of JonBenet, samples were taken from her body and from the basement room where she was found strangled in the Ramsey home. Sources say technicians made scrapings from beneath JonBenet's fingernails, swabbed her skin for traces of saliva and blood, and vacuum for hair and foreign skin cells. Certain findings could be key to solving her murder.

Professor MIMI WESSON (University of Colorado Law School): If you find anything, any piece of DNA that's identified to a person who had no business in that house at that time, that's highly significant.

HANDLESMAN: But not conclusive. DNA like that could be old, irrelevant. Police say there's no evidence of a break-in at the Ramsey home. They say their investigation's focused on the parents, John and Patsy Ramsey. Denver area DA Bob Grant, a member of the JonBenet murder task force, says it's unlikely the DNA results can strengthen a case against the parents.

Mr. BOB GRANT (Adams County District Attorney): So people that are innocently in that house are going to have their DNA everywhere. People who are innocently in contact with that child, including parents, siblings, are going to have their DNA all over that child.

HANDLESMAN: The Ramseys are still running ads endorsed by the Boulder prosecutor implying that a stranger killed their daughter. Boulder police said today they're no longer interested in an Arizona woman who claimed to be John Ramsey's lover.

Four and a half months after JonBenet's murder, the biggest crime in Boulder history remains unsolved. And police and prosecutors here are warning not to expect an arrest in this case anytime soon. I'm Steve Handlesman in Denver for RIVERA LIVE.

RIVERA: Steve, thank you very much. I want to go back to Bob Pence, our former head of the FBI in Denver. Bob, is the statement that they're no longer interested in--in the Ballard woman sound police work or is it sour grapes?

Mr. ROBERT PENCE (Security Consultant/Former FBI Agent): Oh, I think that they would be interested in the--in the woman, if any statement were made that was credible, that would indicate some taint on the character of a possible suspect. And I think they would be amenable to that. I--I think by making that statement, I doubt if that would hold if other evidence came or she came forward and was willing to be interviewed.

RIVERA: So you would believe that if, indeed, John Ramsey had an affair during this period when Patsy Ramsey was being treated for ovarian cancer, and Kim Ballard, being the petite woman that--and advertised herself as such--she told us when we had her on the phone earlier that the--the first word in bold print in the USA Today advertisement said Southern belle,' and then blonde, petite, college-educated, looking for professional male.'

Mr. PENCE: Mm-hmm.

RIVERA: That was the essence of the ad. And then she went on to account--recount some of what she--the intimate details of the relationship--alleged relationship. You believe that that would be probative and not just gossipy?

Mr. PENCE: Oh, I think that could be important. I don't know that it would go to the merits of the case, as far as evidentiary. But I think, if it was a credible statement and she comes forward and is able to substantiate it, that would certainly be something that the police could--could develop, as far as a character flaw which might--in--in fact, if she has that credible information, she might have other information that would be evidentiary. But even if she doesn't, it would certainly be something that would tell us a little something new and different about one of the possible suspects.

RIVERA: And--and, remember, one of the things she does recount is that members of the John Ramsey investigative legal team were in constant contact with her. It would certainly indicate, if true--and I've not heard them deny it--if true, that they thought her information somewhat significant or at least they feared some of what she had to say.

Mr. PENCE: I agree. I think if they reached out for her, there was some--either a knowing interest there that there was a relationship or that they really needed to nail it down and find out what it was all about.

RIVERA: I want to go to Barrie Hartman briefly, editor of the Boulder Daily Camera. You were meeting, Barrie, when you left me on Tuesday...


RIVERA: ...with Tom Koby, the police chief, and Alex Hunter, the--the district attorney. Without revealing the substance of your discussions, can you tell me whether or not they were--they seemed collegial? Did they seem amicable? Did--were they--was there--was there evidence of a rift?

Mr. HARTMAN: They--there is no rift between those two. They're very close. They're very supportive of each other. I--I--in all the--in the five months that this investigation has been going on, I've seen nothing but a close working relationship between them.

RIVERA: And what about all these reports of, you know, the--the--the--the DA, for instance, the adult male business and the Ramsey family ad approved by him; the cops knew nothing about it?

Mr. HARTMAN: I think that's--that's a blip, and I think in a case like this, you're going to have blips. And, thank goodness, there haven't been too many of them.

RIVERA: OK, guys. Thank you very much. I want to go, as soon as we take this commercial break, to the McVeigh trial. More dramatic testimony. Stay tuned, folks. Be right back.


LOAD-DATE: May 17, 1997