The Crime Scene
Updated: August 29, 2000
The first Floor
1. A 2-1/2 page hand printed ransom note was found at the foot of the spiral stairway by Patsy Ramsey
at approximately 5:50 a.m., on the 26th. of December, 1996.
2. A writing tablet found at the desk by investigators was determined to be the tablet the ransom note
was written on.
3. A large "Mag" flashlight was found on the kitchen countertop, typical of the type used by police. None of
the on-duty police claimed it. It was entered into evidence.
4. Stairway to the basement.
5. The felt tip pen used in writing the ransom note was found here.
6. Metal grate covering light well to the basement broken window. The window had been broken by John
Ramsey previously, and not repaired. There were small bits of broken glass on a suitcase placed below it
and the on the basement floor. Police found a spider web attached to the grate later that day indicating to
them that it had not been disturbed. Later, an authority on spiders told investigators that it was possible for
this type of spider to reconstruct it's web in a few hours if it had been disturbed, given the change in
temperature later in the day.
7. A bowl of fresh cut pineapple was found in the dining room late in the afternoon. The bowl had Burke and
Patsy's fingerprints on it.
8. A neighbor had noticed after midnight of the 26th. that the light that was typically kept on in the
solarium, which was at the southeast corner of the house, had been turned off.
9. When John Fernie arrived, he came up the alley and around to the rear patio door. Looking in through the
glass he could see part of the ransom note but could not get in. He ran around the house to the front
door. John was the first person to arrive at the house. He knew that he left footprints all around the
house as he ran, and yet, inexplicably, the police reported that they did not find any. News reports
reporting this error led many people to suspect the Ramseys. Later, investigators determined that an
intruder could have moved around the patio and sidewalk in back without leaving prints and that the
light snow that fell during the night might have covered over any foot prints made in the snow.
10. Just after midnight, a neighbor to the South saw a strange lights in the kitchen area. The kitchen
light itself was turned off which was atypical.
11. A metal baseball bat was found outside in the back yard in a bush. The bat had fibers from a carpet that
lay in front of the door to the basement wine cellar where the body was found.
12. A neighbor across the street was awakened by a horrible scream about 2:00 a.m. The neighbor woke her
husband who shortly thereafter heard a sound described as metal scraping or "pinging" across concrete.
This may have been the sound of the grate being moved, the bat being dragged across the brick wall or a
manhole in the alley being moved and replaced.