Shock link between two JonBenet Ramsey cops who also probed ‘related’ case revealed as one punished for lousy policing

TWO of the lead investigators on the JonBenet Ramsey case also oversaw the “botched” probe into an attack on another young girl that happened just months after the child beauty queen’s infamous unsolved murder.

JonBenet Ramsey was just six-years-old when she was found beaten and strangled to death in the basement of her parent’s ritzy Boulder, Colorado mansion on December 26, 1996.

JonBenet Ramsey was murdered in December 1996. Her killer has never been caught

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JonBenet Ramsey was murdered in December 1996. Her killer has never been caughtCredit: Rex Features
The case remains one of the most famous unsolved murders in US history

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The case remains one of the most famous unsolved murders in US historyCredit: AP

Just over nine months later, a 12-year-old girl who attended the same dance school as JonBenet awoke in the middle of the night on Sept. 14, 1997, to find a man clad in all black standing at her bedside with his hand over her mouth.

The girl, who The U.S. Sun is referring to under the pseudonym Amy, was sexually assaulted by the assailant over a period of several horrifying minutes.

The sickening attack was interrupted by Amy’s mom who burst into the room wielding a can of mace after she heard whispering and other strange noises coming from her daughter’s room.

The assailant pushed passed Amy’s mom and escaped from the home via a second-floor window.

Neither JonBenet’s murderer nor Amy’s attacker has ever been caught.

Amy’s father has long suspected the two cases may have been carried out by the same individual, but he claims the Boulder PD bungled the probe into the attack on his daughter and “laughed off” any suggested parallels between the incidents.

Case files obtained by The U.S. Sun regarding Amy’s case reveal that two of the detectives who oversaw JonBenet’s murder also investigated the attack on Amy.

Those detectives were Linda Arndt and Thomas Trujillo.

Earlier this week, Trujillo, the head of BPD’s Investigations Unit, was reassigned to night patrol by superiors after an internal review revealed that a number of unspecified cases had not been properly investigated between 2019 and 2022.

A 36-year veteran of the force, Trujillo also received a three-day suspension without pay and was placed on a Performance Improvement Plan, a press release published Tuesday said.

As consequence of the reassignment, Trujillo will no longer be involved in any of the department’s ongoing investigations, including the JonBenet Ramsey case, a spokesperson confirmed to The U.S. Sun.

Four other officers in BPD’s investigations division were also cited for misconduct.

The Police Oversight Panel has recommended the termination of all five officers, according to the release.

“While upgrading data and transitioning to a new open data portal, department officials became aware of cases assigned to a particular detective that had not been investigated or investigated fully between 2019 and the present,” the department release stated.

“Upon the discovery of this issue, in July 2022, the police chief immediately brought it to the attention of the Professional Standards Unit and the Independent Police Monitor, with allegations of several different rule/policy violations made against five officers: the detective and four others within his chain of command.

“A subsequent internal Professional Standards Unit investigation sustained the violations against all five officers.

“In August 2022, the PSU investigation was sent to the Office of the Independent Police Monitor and the Police Oversight Panel for review prior to the chief making a final disciplinary determination.”

Commander Thomas Trujillo, the former lead investigator on the JonBenet case also investigated the attack on Amy. He was disciplined for misconduct earlier this week

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Commander Thomas Trujillo, the former lead investigator on the JonBenet case also investigated the attack on Amy. He was disciplined for misconduct earlier this weekCredit: City of Boulder
Linda Arndt, who quit Boulder PD in 1998, also investigated Amy's attack. She was the only cop on scene when JonBenet's body was found several months earlier

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Linda Arndt, who quit Boulder PD in 1998, also investigated Amy’s attack. She was the only cop on scene when JonBenet’s body was found several months earlierCredit: ABC NEWS

‘INCOMPETECE AND ARROGANCE’

Trujillo was one of the detectives tasked with questioning JonBenet’s parents, John and Pasty Ramsey, when they finally agreed to interview with police in April 1997.

Five months later, he would be summoned to the Boulder Community Hospital in the early hours of Sept. 14 after being alerted to the attack on Amy.

According to a report obtained by The U.S. Sun that was written by Trujillo, he arrived at the hospital after 5.25am and conducted interviews with Amy and her mom later that morning.

Also assigned to Amy’s case was then-detective Linda Arndt, who had been the only cop on the scene when JonBenet’s body was found.

Amid stinging criticism and widespread ridicule of the way she handled the investigation and failed to properly secure the crime scene, Arndt was removed from the Ramsey case by then-Police Chief Tom Koby in May 1997.

After taking an extended period of medical leave, citing “physical exhaustion and strain”, Arndt then was assigned to Amy’s case on Sept. 17 – three days after the attack.

According to a report she wrote in the April of the following year, Arndt conducted a walk-through of the home with Amy and her mom and obtained fingerprints on the frame of Amy’s bed.

It was Arndt who Amy’s parents had told they both believed the attack was linked to JonBenet’s case, the report reveals.

Arndt also conducted interviews with some of Amy’s friends, something that had angered her father.

Her report reads: “[Amy’s dad] did not want me to interview any of [Amy’s] friends. [Amy’s dad] threatened to sue myself and the department if I continued this investigation, certainly if I interviewed [Amy’s] friends.

“On the morning of April 7th I received a message on my voice mail from [Amy’s dad] … [the] tone was angry and threatening.

“[Amy’s dad] was clear that unless there was specific suspect information to go on, he did not want the investigation to continue.”

Amy’s father told The U.S. Sun that he had been left furious when he learned that Arndt had conducted interviews with a number of his daughter’s friends, outing her as a victim of sexual assault – something they had hoped to keep secret.

He said Boulder PD was “grossly disinterested” in his daughter’s case as a whole but cited Arndt for being particularly “incompetent” and “dishonest” in the interactions he shared with her.

JonBenet’s family has also been particularly critical of Arndt in the past.

In a 1999 interview with Good Morning America, shortly after she resigned from Boulder PD, Arndt sensationally claimed she feared John Ramsey was going to kill her after JonBenet’s body was found.

She said she knelt down next to JonBenet’s body, face to face with John, and shared a “nonverbal exchange that I will never forget.”

“And as we looked at each other, I remember, and I wore a shoulder holster, tucking my gun right next to me and consciously counting out the 18 bullets,” Arndt said.

When asked why, she responded: ” ‘Cause I didn’t know if we’d all be alive when people showed up.”

Linda Arndt is one of the best examples of what is wrong with the Boulder Police Department’s investigation of the JonBenet Ramsey case

Lin WoodThe Ramsey Family’s Attorney in 2001

The Ramsey family attorney, Lin Wood, later hit out at Arndt, calling her “one of the best examples of what is wrong with the Boulder Police Department’s investigation of the JonBenet Ramsey case.”

In a 2001 interview with CNN, Wood said: “Linda Arndt was, for the first five months of this investigation, the co-lead detective, along with Detective Tom Trujillo.

“Linda Arndt has no homicide investigation experience, and that’s one of the major problems with this police investigation.

“It’s been handled by inexperienced, biased investigators, who, I believe, are clearly incapable of solving the crime.

“[She had] no evidence to support that false accusation.

“So she’s one example of the accusers of this family, one example of the bias that exists in this department, one example of the inexperience and incompetence that exist in this police department.”

PERCEIVED FAILURES

Amy’s father, during his interview with The U.S. Sun, said he shared the Ramsey family’s view that the BPD’s investigations unit at the time was riddled with incompetence.

Despite apparently frequent requests to Arndt and other investigators to look into perceived links between Amy’s and JonBenet’s cases, they were “dismissive” of any potential parallels and even at times hostile towards him for making the suggestion.

The reason, Amy’s dad believes, is because the department was so fixated on John and Patsy Ramsey being JonBenet’s killers at the time.

“They were completely uninterested,” he charged. “They didn’t care about my daughter’s case and they didn’t even really care about the Ramsey case.

“I’d contact them regularly, asking if they’d looked into this or that and they’d just lie to me.

“We asked to see some mugshots of sex offenders in the area to see if [Amy] or my wife recognized anyone but we were told that wouldn’t be any good.

“We asked them to send someone over to make a composite sketch of the suspect using my wife’s eyewitness description but they refused.

“The Denver Police Department even offered to help them out with the case but they said they had it covered and they knew what they were doing.

Amy's dad cited Arndt for being particularly'incompetent' and'dishonest' in the interactions he shared with her.

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Amy’s dad cited Arndt for being particularly ‘incompetent’ and ‘dishonest’ in the interactions he shared with her.Credit: AP
Any potential suggestions his daughter's case was linked to JonBenet's death were'laughed off' by police, Amy's dad said

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Any potential suggestions his daughter’s case was linked to JonBenet’s death were ‘laughed off’ by police, Amy’s dad saidCredit: Getty

“[And] they wouldn’t hear anything about this being linked to JonBenet,” he continued.

“They didn’t seem to be able to get off the idea that someone in the Ramsey family was responsible for her death.

“The level of incompetence was pretty impressive, but the worst thing was that they were dishonest.

“I had a number of pretty intense confrontations with the chief of police at the time, who also lied about multiple things – so it was an eye-opener for sure.”

Compounding his frustrations, he claims, was that investigators failed to collect key evidence and overlooked other glaring clues during their probe.

OVERLOOKED SIMILARITIES

The Boulder Police Department declined to comment on Amy’s dad’s claims when approached by The U.S. Sun.

But at the center of Amy’s dad’s beliefs that his daughter’s attack may be linked to the death of JonBenet is the fact that Amy, like the slain child beauty pageant queen, took frequent dance lessons at a local studio on Pearl Street called Dance West.

Amy’s dad believes that both of the girls may have been stalked and targeted by their attacker – or attackers – at the dance studio.

“It was a fairly open place that you could just come and go from,” Amy’s dad said of Dance West, adding that there was an observation balcony where members of the public could just walk in and sit.

“If you were someone who wanted to sit and watch young girls dance, that would’ve been a good place to do it.

“It was very easy to come and go undetected,” he added.

“I think someone could’ve drawn a bead on [Amy] there and put us under some kind of surveillance that we weren’t aware of at the time.

“It’s hard to say for certain but it seems to be a strong possibility.”

A LUCKY ESCAPE

Apparently so dismayed with Boulder PD’s handling of his daughter’s case, Amy’s dad hired private investigator Pete Peterson to conduct an investigation of his own.

During Peterson’s probe, he discovered a collection of Camel Blue cigarette butts outside of the family’s home. Interestingly, stubbings of the same cigarettes were found in an alleyway next to the Ramsey home in the wake of JonBenet’s murder.

Peterson and Amy’s father tried to get Boulder PD to test the cigarette butts for DNA but they reportedly refused.

More than 25 years later, Amy’s dad still holds the belief that if BPD had taken his daughter’s case more seriously, they likely could’ve solved the murder of JonBenet too.

“There are so many similarities between the two cases that I think there’s a very good chance it was the same person,” he said.

“In both cases, this is someone who was able to get past an alarm, past a dog and was probably hiding inside the home for some time before attacking.

“It looks like someone who hid in the house while people were out and then came out in the middle of the night after they came home and locked up.

“The only difference is my daughter survived,” Amy’s dad added.

“But had it not been for my wife being a light sleeper, we may have been in the newspapers for the same reasons as the Ramsey family.”

Patsy and Jon Ramsey were cleared of any wrongdoing in their daughter's death back in 2008, two years after Patsy succumbed to cancer

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Patsy and Jon Ramsey were cleared of any wrongdoing in their daughter’s death back in 2008, two years after Patsy succumbed to cancerCredit: Reuters
John Ramsey has called for the investigation into his daughter's death to be taken away from Boulder PD

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John Ramsey has called for the investigation into his daughter’s death to be taken away from Boulder PDCredit: A&E

https://www.the-sun.com/news/6876550/jonbenet-ramsey-murder-cold-case-link-boulder-police/ Shock link between two JonBenet Ramsey cops who also probed ‘related’ case revealed as one punished for lousy policing

DevanCole

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