You Cannot Judge the Exception by the Rule

Why have I and the whole EAR/ONS community, and indeed apparently elements of law enforcement, become goosed over a “new” POI? So far, I think it is as much over the concept he represents than the individual. He havered about my list for a while. On a scale of 1 to 10 he was near the top. But on the surface he didn’t match all that I felt was required to match the profile of EAR/ONS. His looks matched well enough. He got pushed back. One thing was always tantalizing and yet discouraging– he would have to have come from afar.

The map of the EAR’s strikes in the Sacramento area suddenly came to life. It did look like EAR could have been hitting the East Area of Sacramento from without and not from within. EAR certainly made his MO a traveling MO later. But could the villain who would become the No 1 serial offender in history start out this clever?

Every exception is unique else it is not an exception. There can be no subcategory in the book of rules entitled “exceptions”  or they are no longer exceptions. They are merely a subcategory and in themselves form a pattern to study.

This is what makes cold case so difficult. Unsolved crime sprees that have been the result of prolific offenders like EAR have a factor in them that is unique to the case alone. Nothing else can be used as a comparative to interpret them or solve them. They must be solved on the clues and evidence inherent in them. The Book of Rules does not apply.  We must not only assume this, we must presume it.

Ask any detective of long standing experience. The hardest murder to solve is the individual killing. Serial killers leave loads of clues as they commit crime after crime. But the single unsolved murder, something like Black Dahlia, is a nightmare to tackle.

By contrast, EAR/ONS should never have entered the status of the No 1 unsolved crime spree in history. Yet this is what he is. The No 1 criminal mystery. It’s not the fault of the investigators. He struck in several jurisdictions– at least 10– and none caught his scent. They all can’t be inept. He was simply that careful. He was an exception.

But in what way? After assessing all the data, we should have assumed it was in premeditation. He was calculating.

EAR/ONS committed over 50 rapes– terror strikes– and at least 10 murders over a 10 year period. He didn’t waylay. He carefully assailed a neighborhood. He was opportunistic sometimes but not impulsive. This guy thought things out. The number 50 doesn’t tell it all. He stalked neighbors of victims as well. He should have left loads of clues tracing him to his lair. How many times– possibly hundreds– that he should have been turned in while roaming a neighborhood and at least questioned. Never apparently. How many times could a homeowner have blown him away for being in their yard? Many. Yet not once. He represents some incredible exception.

We should have suspected he began his crime spree with one premeditated calculation intact– strike from afar.

It fits. The pattern on the map is a clue. It’s not evidence yet. But it is a clue. Did EAR come back to an area he knew, but at the time he had lived about 40 minutes away?

It’s a new angle, and this has proven exciting, especially in conjunction with a POI.

But we must remember it has been almost 40 years. Much must be uncovered, even if he is to become only the first established genuine suspect in EAR/ONS’s growing public dossier in True Crime. If he isn’t EAR, he represents something that should be taken seriously. The dragnet will have to widen beyond a resident of the East Area.

It could be very daunting. I’ve encountered this once before in my investigation of a Person of Interest. This is what stymied me in going public with my suspect in The Zodiac murders. In my next post I will elucidate.

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