February 15, 2000
JONBENET MOVIE: WHAT THE RAMSEY DON'T WANT YOU TO SEE
By LAURIE CAMPBELL
You'll be judge and jury when the unsolved murder of JonBenet Ramsey goes on trial this month on TV -- and that's exactly what the slain beauty queen's mom is afraid of!
Fox TV's Getting Away With Murder: The JonBenet Ramsey Story is a one-hour special that will lay out all the facts surrounding the 6-year-old girl's murder and reenact the crime so dramatically that the movie's producer Ted Haimes calls it "raw."
It's a stark look at the gruesome killing that parents John and Patsy Ramsey don't want you to watch.
"We knew they'd be against what we were doing, so we didn't even consult them," says Haimes.
"They wouldn't want to have anything to do with this movie. We put all the evidence against the Ramseys out there, and we also capture the emotion of the day JonBenet's body was found."
That tragic day was December 26, 1996, when, after finding a ransom note demanding money for JonBenet's return, John Ramsey discovered his daughter's battered and lifeless body in the basement of the family's Boulder, Colo., home.
Attorney and veteran JonBenet-case analyst Darnay Hoffman says the movie, which will air February 16, is Patsy Ramsey's worst nightmare.
"In one hour, the producers are going to lay out the case against her and John Ramsey, as well as other theories," he says. "This is a real crisis -- for mom especially -- because so much points to her involvement, from the suspicious ransom note, which some experts say bears a strong resemblance to her own handwriting, to Patsy's version of events the night JonBenet died.
"Her every thought has to be: 'Kill this movie!'"
A close friend of Patsy agrees: "This movie is going to be something that's come to be known as B.O.R.G. -- Bent on Ramsey Guilt. Why would Patsy want something like this out there? The movie doesn't show all the information."
On the other hand, the couple was more than willing to cooperate with people putting together the highly pro-Ramsey movie based on Lawrence Schiller's book Perfect Murder, Perfect Town.
"When the Ramseys found out that Schiller was planning on presenting alternative murder theories in his movie, they were very grateful," says a source close to the investigation. "So much so that they wanted to fly out to the movie set and thank him."
But there's no such gratitude for the folks at Fox TV who have based their show on a Vanity Fair article.
One theory highlighted in the magazine is that a sex game, possibly with her father, went horribly awry before he killed the child. The coroner's report says JonBenet died as a result of a massive skull fracture caused by a heavy object, but the sick sex-game theory's fueled by the garrote found tightened around the little girl's neck.
Then, the theory holds, Patsy participated in an elaborate cover-up by writing a ransom note to make it look like a kidnapping.
Sticking carefully to details provided by police reports, the movie's producers reenact every tragic moment of the murder scene, many of which are disturbing.
"Why did Patsy keep an eye on police when they arrived, even though she seemed to be inconsolably crying?" asks Haimes. "Why -- at the most monstrous moment of their lives -- didn't John and Patsy comfort each other? They barely looked at each other.
"I don't blame the Ramseys for objecting to the movie because it shows all the evidence that makes them look guilty."