Cina L. Wong, B.C.D.E.
Court Qualified Board Certified Document Examiner
1131 Granby St. Norfolk VA 23510 U.S.A
(757) 622-9606 fax,622-9585
Mr. Darnay Hoffman, Atty.
210 West 70th Street Suite 209
New York NY 10023
November 14, 1997
Dear Mr. Hoffman:
Pursuant to your request, I have examined certain materials and documents consisting of the following:
Questioned Document: (Copy)
Three page handprinted "ransom" note. Begins with "Mr. Ramsey,..." and ends with "Victory! S,B.T.C." It contains 67 lines. Probably disguised writing.
Standards Used for Comparison/Exemplars (Unrehearsed writing by Pasty Ramsey ): [Copies)
Two page letter addressed to "Miss Kit..." Dated "Wednesday, June 4.
A greeting card pre-printed with "Wishing you a bright and beautiful holiday season." Begins with "Hi Bob!" and ends with "Love, Patsy, John & Family."
Color photocopy of a photographed sign "Welcome to the Northwest Territory," Has green holly leaves and red berries pointed on the cardboard-brown sign. Lettering is in white.
Color photocopy of a photographed box with "Ramsey" written in the lower right corner.
Color photocopy of a photo with four children. Printed at base of photo "Rainbow Fish Players".
Color photocopy of a photo-scrapbook with handprinting: "This me when I was first born. That's my Mom and the doctor." "I was 1˝ I'm having a picture taken." "I was 2. 1 was going bike riding with my Mom and my Dad".
Round metal button with handprinting, "Hello... I'm Marilyn Monroe-".
Ramsey Handwriting Report
In this preliminary opinion, over 30 points of similarity between the QD (Questioned Document = "Ransom Note") and SI-S7 (Exemplars) are noted in detail.
Original documents were not available for examination.
Areas that could not be reviewed for analysis were the speed, pressure and actual size of the writings.
Though copies were examined, there was enough information available through pattern recognition techniques to form an opinion.
The term "closely matches" in this report refers to a "match" of letter(s), word(s) or the described, as in the range of a writer's normal writing variations.
Distinct Appearances Between the "Ransom" Note and Exemplars of Patsy Ramsey
The "R" is open to the left in the "Ramsey" written in S4, closely matches the "R" of "Ramsey" in line 1 of the QD.
The "D" in S1 has an extended stroke to the upper left in the word "Dear" which closely matches the "D" of "Don't" in line 62 of the QD.
The tendency of an extended stroke which is mentioned in the previous paragraph, can also be found in the letter "R" in "Ramsey" of S4 and in the "R" of "Ramsey" in Line 1 of the QD.
The final downstroke in the letter "m" in "Welcome" of S3 closely matches the "M" in "Mr" In Line 1 of the QD.
The "se" connection in S4 closely matches the repetitive "se" connections found in Line 23, 36 and 64 of the QD.
The formation (especially the upward ending stroke) of the "l" in "Welcome" in S3 closely matches the "l's" in Line 10, 51, and 53 of the QD.
The formation of the upward ending stroke of the "t's" in S3 closely matches the "t's" in Line 14, 16, and 40 (to name just a few) of the QD.
The formation of the upward ending stroke of the "i" on page 2 of S1 (word "pix"), closely matches the "i's" in Line 7 ("time"), 13, 19 ("in"), and 33 of the QD.
The connection of the horizontal stroke of the letter "A" shown in S4 closely matches the horizontal attachment of "A" to "n" in the word "Any" in line 29 of the QD.
The low placement of the "t-bar" in relation to the "h" in the word "Northwest" in S3 matches the low placement of the "t-bar" in "th" words in lines 6, 14 and 16 of the QD.
Occasionally, where the "t" is connected to a letter "h," the stem of the "h" is higher that the stem of the "t". This is shown in S1, page 2 Lines 5 and 8, it appears to be of the same form according to the copy of the QD.
The dot of the exclamation point drops below the baseline on page 2 of Sl, matching the position it falls below the baseline after the word "Victory" on page 3 of the QD.
The oversized "c" in "crash course" and "contenders" in S1 closely matches the oversized "c" of "carefully" in line 2 of the QD.
The "W" with the larger opening to the left, and a smaller opening to the right in the "Wlsll found in Si, page 2 line 5 ("would') and in S5 the word "rainbow" matches the "WI' in "Well of Line 2 of the QD.
The formation and combination of "ce" mimic each other (Ilc" appears to -be a 'a" and the "e" appears to be a NN cll), This is shown in SI Line 5 "performance,, which closely matches "deceive,, in Line 48 and "enforcement" in Line 49 of the QD.
*The capital "All to "n" horizontal connective stroke in S4 is similar to the "A" to 'In" connective stroke in Line 29 of the QD,
*The formation and indentation (appears at 11:00) in the letter 'loll in Sl page 2 Line I word "to" matches the 'loll in "to" of Line 37 of the QD.
*The shape of the "o" with a point at the top of S3 in the word "to" and in the word "rainbow" of S5 closely matches the "ols" found in Line 40, 44 and 52 of the QD.
*The observation that both the Standards and the QD have a combination of @- Ily" final strokes where the stroke ends in a straight vertical-like line without a loop, or a stroke that continues to the left forming a curve.
Examples of the vertical-like ending can be found in S2 "family," and in S4 which closely matches the "y's" in "try" Line 47 and in "try" of Line 52 of the QD.
Examples of the curved ending stroke is in S3 "territory" and S7 of "Marilyn" which is similar to the Ily" in 'money" of line 43, but more so, matches with the curved ending strokes of many of the letter "g's" found throughout the QD.
*Spaces between lines of writing appear to "tangle" when lower strokes of letters collide with tops of letters from a sentence below. This "tangling" can be seen in Sl page 2 Lines 5 and 6, and in lines 10, 11 and 12. These examples closely match Lines 34 and 35, 39 and 40, and 55 and 56 in the QD.
*The I'M" in S7 "Ilrp." closely matches the "M" in Line I of "Mr." in the QD. Soth "Mls" have pointed tops, and a @rved ending stroke.
*The left margin slowly pulls left ward towards the base of the page in Si and S2, which closely match the margins in the QD,
*The first paragraph after the salutation starts with in a range of the second word of the salutation. The example in SI and S2 closely match the first page of the QD.
*The upper portion of the "SI is written with a smaller area of space ("pinched" in appearance and sometimes with an angle), as opposed to the final curve of the IS" which is formed larger. Example can be seen in S3 "Northwest" and in S5 in " Fish Players." This closely matches the "s" located in Line 8 in "She", 14 in "bills", and 16 in "size,, of the QD,
*The curved stem of the lowercase "cl" in S6 "an(i," "doctor" and Dad" mzltches the 'Id" in Lirie 26 "delivery," and in 31 "daughter," of the Qr).
*The baseline of a writing is an "imaginary" line or given line (if ruled paper) on which one writes their sentences on. When measured, the words in the exemplars show that some words "rise" above and some words "fall" below the baseline. If a ruler is placed under the sentences written in the QD, one can also see this repetitive pattern of "rising" and "falling" words.
*In the exemplars as well as the Qr), the spacing between words appear greater than average.
*The letters "r" and "oll have a tendency to touch together as in S7 "Monroe" which closely matches example in Line 19 "brown" and in 21 "tomorrow" of the QD.
*The slant of the letters in the printed exemplars of Patsy Ramsey (S3, 85,and S6) reflects the over all vertical slant which is presented in the QD (more evident in the last parts of the QD where writing is 1888 controlled),
*The formation of the exclamation points in SI page I line 13 SI page 2, (last exclamation point)after the word "back," in S2 line 6 after the word "ball" closely matches the exclamation point in Line 66 of
It shows the tendency for the initial stroke of the exclamation to have a left ward curve, causing it to have a bending effect
*The uniquely formed comma on Sl page 1 line 2,veers to the left, and finishes by curving to the right. This comma matches the unique formed comma found in Line 13 number "$100,000" of the QD,
*Untisuall@, formed portion of the letter lb." The second curved stroke of the "b's" contains an point in the 12:00 to 1:00 position. This "pointed bl' can be seen in SS "Rainbow" and matches Line 18 ")Dring," and 19 "bag" of the QD.
Items to be examined if additional exemplars are available.
General shared characteristics in both the Standards and the QD are the tendency for letter like "t's" and "s's" to connect to a following letter.
Would like to see original exemplars to measure spacing of letters.
Would like to see original exemplars to measure size of letters and writing
Looking for "re" combos that run together.
Looking for "rivers" in writing caused by the large spacing in words. "Rivers" appear in the QD and in small amounts in the exemplars.
In writing where a person has the tendency (at times) to make apostrophes and quotations in reverse, commas are also in reverse, as the one seen in Line 1 and 15 of the QD.
Any of these observations will not be able to stand alone as evidence, but it is as a "collective whole" they represent a repetitive pattern which not only exists in the QD but also in the examined exemplars alleged written by Patsy Ramsey.
Based upon preliminary analysis of these items, and from an application of forensic document examination principles and techniques, it is my professional opinion, that the hand that authored the known Standards for Comparison as Patsy Ramsey appears to be very likely the same hand that authored the Questioned Document "Ransom Note".
It is requested that an examination of the original documents and any additional document relating to this case be available.
This opinion is based on copies alleged to be true representatives of the original document.
It is quite rare for a Document Examiner to quantify degrees of certainty on a numerical scale. But, for the purposes of allowing a general understanding of my results, I have designated a rating of probability based on a scale of 1-10.
It is my preliminary opinion, given the multitude of similarities linking the Questioned Document to the exemplars, that the probability these documents were written by the same hand is 8.5 on this scale.
It is not uncommon for some people to have 2 or 4 of the similar characteristics I have listed, since they may have learned to write in the same "copybook" method in grade school.
The relatively large number of distinctive similarities (32) found in both the "ransom note" and exemplars allegedly written by Patsy Ramsey, however, cannot be ignored.
Statistically, it can only be concluded that it is very likely the same hand wrote all the documents
If further information or assistance is desired, please advise.
Sincerely, Cina L. Wong, B.C.D.E
(Board Certified Document Examiner)
AFFIDAVIT OF CINA L. WONG
STATE OF VIRGINIA
CINA L. WONG, being duly sworn, deposes and says:
1. I am a court qualified and board certified forensic handwriting expert. My qualifications are attached to the end of this affidavit.
2. My office is located at 1131 Granby Street, Norfolk Virginia.
3. I have testified in various courts of law as an expert witness in the area of handwriting identification and forensic document examination.
4. I have made careful examination and comparison of the "ransom" note and the exemplars of Patsy Ramsey. I have reached the conclusion that the handwritings and "ransom" note were very probably written by the same person.
5. An examination of the available exemplars of Patsy Ramsey show that there are significant areas of comparison and similarity with those of the "ransom" note.
6. Attached to this affidavit will be a preliminary report of my results.
7. This opinion is based on copies of Patsy Ramsey's exemplars alleged to be true representatives of the original document.
8. The number- of exemplars were limited, and it is the opinion of this affiant that additional exemplars be provided as well the original ransom note in order to more firmly confirm the opinions of this affidavit and the accompanying report.
9. Nevertheless, in light of the many similarities between the "ransom" note and Patsy Ramsey's exemplars, it is my professional opinion that Patsy Ramsey very likely wrote the "ransom" note.
Dated: November 13, 1997.
(SIGNATURE OF CINA WONG)
CINA L. WONG, B.C.D.E.
STATE OF VIRGINIA:
Sworn to and subscribed before me this day of 13th day of November, 1997.
(SIGNATURE OF NOTARY)
My Commission expires August 31, 2001.