Changing Fortunes– The Zodiac Killer

When I first tread into True Crime in 2010 the case of the Zodiac Killer was quickly tanking. It had received a blast of popular interest because of the 2007 movie, but with popularity came all sorts of contention, as I understand it, amongst those who followed the case. I completely missed all that, for which I am grateful. I entered True Crime concentrating on Jack the Ripper. In 2012 I openly entered the Zodiac case investigation.

Media wise the Zodiac Killer case was far out of the limelight. A few of those involved were rather nice to me, though many did not understand my “different take” on the topic. Compared to EAR/ONS, Zodiac was nothing. EAR/ONS was fomenting and now has entered the limelight.

According to my analytics, however, The Zodiac case is returning in popularity. It could be because next year is the 50th anniversary of the case. That will always set the news off, but only next year. It is going on now, and so I must assume the interest to be cyclical. I would like to flatter myself and say it is just my “different take” that has finally caught on, but I think it truly is cyclical, and now that more return to think about the case they visit as much cyber stuff as they can on it.

Lake_Berryessa_Suspec sketch

They should marvel about it the case. The Zodiac swung along the spectrum from bungling perpetration to cerebral game playing. He was a truly bizarre braggart in the annals of crime. On Q Files I limit myself to purely official investigative material, my own investigation, and to those pearls of great price that others have uncovered. What Ricardo Gomez discovered in 2008 was particularly good.

So for all those following me now, just a note to remind you that The Quester Files section on Zodiac remains that “different take” because I did not follow the narrative. I limited myself to investigative material. This led me to my POI, and my investigation has refined him into the most likely candidate.

My web site has allowed me to reestablish the original foundation, so we can start all over fresh again and follow the trail of the most pompous killer in history. The popular folklore has built Zodiac up into such an arch villain, that it has undermined the  process of elimination. It has caused people (and perhaps even official investigators) to doubt the DNA profile and the bloody fingerprints in Stine’s cab—what both Toschi and Armstrong considered conclusive.

Soon I hope to move forward with the formal turn-in of my suspect “Steve Beard.” As I write the dossier (or thesis) I will share some outcroppings here, some things I have never outlined before. But I think some can be shared. The thesis will be different from HorrorScope. The thesis goes right for the throat.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

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Happy Halloween! Cold Case Updates.

I have made some significant progress in identifying one of the lost NorCal Rapist crime scenes, and perhaps I am closer to finding another. This theatrical, smug rapist struck once on Halloween (1996) and another time close to it– a fit time for a masked creep who liked to play his own trick-or-treat with the lives of others.

Fortunately, his DNA was filed against (at least in Sacramento County) so that statute of limitations has been circumvented. He can still be prosecuted. And I hunt him. . . sadly to do so I must uncovered the strike locations, most of which have been lost.

As for EAR/ONS, I hope to have a few more POIs submitted by Thanksgiving. I have my own route for submitting my information to the task force, but people do contact me and on occasions when it is a legitimate concern over a POI I forward to them the FBI contact. A couple of POI are under scrutiny via this method as well.

Since I have made very concise my approach to the crime spree, I do my own legwork and investigation and I am able to submit any pertinent and potential leads I uncover. No one else follows my angle, which is good. Each has his own angle of approach– real estate, development, etc.

So this update is basically the gist of this post– all is good. The process of elimination continues. Between 600 to 700 have been DNA tested from about 6,300 or so POIs– if my memory serves. The others have been eliminated via other means. This is major progress. There is no failing in the process of elimination.

As I understand it, the FBI and Air Force are sweeping all Sacramento area schools, checking the records of all male students attending between 1968 and 1976 and comparing them to custody records between 1982 to 1986 to see if a name appears. Those that do, naturally, they will look into more deeply to see if this is EAR/ONS.

With the same fervor of Dr. Loomis, everybody involved wants to get this real life Michael Myers for all he did.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Weaving the Net with NorCal Rapist

I spent most of yesterday trying to refine the location of the first strike made by NorCal Rapist in 1991 in Rohnert Park, California. I ended up coming back to the same location I had marked years before based on a news interview with the victim. If this location holds up, we have a startling similarity to the location of NorCal’s final strike in North Natomas on October 16, 2006.

I visited the area of North Natomas on the 13th, just a few days ago, the 11th anniversary of his last strike, and drove the route NorCal must have driven in order to have been captured on the neighbor’s video surveillance camera.

 

As it stands I only know a few of the dates for the attacks, and only two locations precisely, and the Rohnert Park location is still kinda sketchy.

I know NorCal wore a skeleton mask at Halloween 1996 in Martinez. He wore another Halloween or Mardi Gras mask in Davis in 1997 and was captured on ATM video camera wearing it– even flaunting it to the camera.

a5463e569138753b72a3f2bf67fa155d--mardi-gras-costumes-mardi-gras-masks

This act in itself is illuminating. It tells us that NorCal knew he could not use a mask at an ATM later in the day and not be seen. More definitely, he could not use it later and not be giving away the direction back to his sordid lair. He had to use it shortly after the attack while still relatively dark and before he left Davis. We know he wasn’t local. He drove long distance, thus earning the moniker NorCal for “Northern California.” But he was careful enough to know he couldn’t give away the direction from which he had come.

Altogether clues begin to amalgamate as to his character. The result is we get a very nasty picture of a careful, arrogant, calculating  predator. He liked to taunt his victims. But nothing yet in only the two strike locations tells us how he stalked his intended victims.

There really is no place on Ivycrest (North Natomas) from which he could have watched them. There seems no place on Parkway (Rohnert Park) where he could have done the same there.  There is some other means by which he first saw his intended victims and then learned more about them. More precise information on location is needed still for all of the attacks.

There was once a website listing all the details known. It had been put up by a friend of one of the victims and then it was augmented by Victim 1. Unfortunately it is long gone, and no one has so far contacted me to fill me in on dates and locations and any details NorCal said and did during his attacks.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

The Smiling Sadist . . . NORCAL Rapist

It’s time on finally take on this taunting swine. Before he left one victim, after he had subjected her to hours of indignity in her own home, he advised her to keep her doors locked because she was only inviting burglars otherwise. He called another and apologized to her, reaffirming for her personal feeling of value that he knew she was a good person at heart. . . like it had been her fault he had stalked her, learned her residence, and then broke in one night and raped her.

The lead CSI that cued me into this case had told me NORCAL was a “taunter.” He liked to tease and taunt his victims. Tongue-in-cheek, he thought he was being witty with his sarcasm, as his victims lay there gagged, trussed, eyes bulging, wondering if he was going to kill them.

This whole character of taunting comes to life when you study the ATM footage of this creep. This footage was taken in Davis in 1997 after he had left one of his victims and used her ATM card to get cash. He liked to wear masks. He wore a Halloween mask when he struck one victim on Halloween. Here he wears a clear, face distorting mask because he knows the ATM has a camera. He turns, boasting in his way that he has outwitted those who shall see it, flaunting the mask. You can see him smiling.

At least 10 victims between 1991 and 2006. He presumptuously enjoyed it all . . .and he got away.

As I write the introduction to this case study on Q Files, there is much that needs to be done. More details are imperative.  He struck his victims in their homes. Somehow I must uncover at least the street names. This much is necessary because the location will help to determine how he prowled and where he selected his victims to begin with. He struck over a large part of northern California, so that he had some unique method by which he was attracted to potential victims and then learned their locations.

The introduction and the page on his last attack, ironically, will go up first because I know the location and details of the last strike. But the others have been lost, and so far I have not been able to uncover them. Nevertheless, it is time to start the hunt for this dramatic, theatrical rapist.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Narrowing the Dragnet–the Hunt for Mr. Cruel

Australia’s Mr. Cruel is certainly the embodiment of calculated evil. His preparations to limit any kind of forensic evidence he might leave behind were meticulously planned, almost over-planned.

But 2 things he forgot– his first attack and his final attack’s disposal site. His route to and from them he did not have to protect. He was a beginner at Lower Plenty with his first attack. He raped the poor girl in the house while her family was gagged and tied up. Then he left and went back to his squalid lair to fester.

I’m sure he chose the most direct route home. Why would he not?

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The dump site for Victim 4.

 

For his next 2 attacks he had to be evasive to protect his route home. At both home attacks the fiend kidnapped the under-aged victims and took them to his lair, there to assault them for 18 and 50 hours respectively. He made sure he drove down side routes and back and forth down streets. Both girls said that he drove all around.

This is curious, as it suggests that his route back home was rather straightforward.

LowerP-routes-1

1, marks the attack site in Lower Plenty. This was Mr. Cruel’s first victim. No major highway is near there. But Rural 44 courses down to merge with a very significant route– Rural 40. Arrows mark the way. Click to enlarge.

For these last two attacks he had clearly used the M3 Highway at one point, either to access them or then to drop them back off  in neighborhoods near to where they lived. He passed one of the victim’s home to get to Bayswater, and he stopped just short of Victim’s 3 neighborhood to drop her off in Kew. Each site was off the M3.

But for his final victim this was unnecessary.  He used either Rural 40 or the M3 to access her neighborhood too, but he either never intended to bring her back or something went wrong and she got a glimpse of his face or, worse, something that would easily mark the location of his lair. Precise location would more quickly identify him than a facial composite.

Routes intersect

The route to and from Lower Plenty is marked with yellow arrows (Rural 44 and 40). High Street is marked in red arrows. Dump site for Victim 4 is marked 4. Click to enlarge.

Mr. Cruel drove her to a landfill at High Street and Mahoneys Road. There was no need to disguise his way there. He knew he was going to snuff out her life, which he did with 3 shots to the head. This intersection, under development at that time, is on remarkably straight line from the major streets that he would have used to return from Lower Plenty.

This bolsters the hypothesis that these two locations and the direct routes that service them lead to his lair. We can ad one other factor. Both kidnapped girls that he had returned after their harrowing ordeal reported hearing jets fly overhead while they were kept chained to the bed in his lair. They sounded like they were coming in for a landing. This told police that the lair was under the flight approach to the Melbourne Airport.

Routes-40

Route 40 is significant. It is marked in yellow arrows. It connects the northeast and east area of Melbourne where Mr. Cruel struck with the north of Melbourne and the communities under the airport flight path. It also connects to the M3 (broad red line)Attack points are marked in numbers. Drop off points are marked by stars.  Click to enlarge.

The communities under this flight path were Keilor, Plenty, Watsonia, McLeod, Strathmore, and Coburg. Most important here for us is Coburg. The roads we have discussed above lead straight to Coburg. This is where we begin.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Mr Cruel’s 4th Night Out

It hadn’t been the usual stretch between attacks. It was April 13, 1991. The location (Templestowe) fit with Mr. Cruel’s broad area of attack off the M3 in the east/northeast of Melbourne. It was a corner house, at a main cross road– Serpells and Church.

13 year old Karmein Chan was home with her two younger sisters. They were watching a documentary about Marilyn Monroe. The parents were tending to one of their popular Chinese restaurants. It was a little past 9 p.m. Karmein and one of her sisters went to the kitchen. There facing them in the darkened hallway was a man standing there wearing a balaclava ski mask. In his hand was a large carving knife. ChanHe led them back to the bedroom and shoved both of the younger sisters into a closet and sealed them therein using the bed.

Karmein Chan was his intended victim. He took her. When the sisters got free they found the house was empty. The police came screaming to the area. A thorough search revealed a cut window screen via which the intruder had entered. Curiously, the Chan’s car outside in the driveway was spray-painted: “Payback Asian Drug Dealer.”  The door was lettered: “More and more to come.”

Police investigation proved that the Chans weren’t connected with drug dealing. The lettering on the car, coupled with the location of the attack, and the sisters’ description of the intruder, all smacked of Mr. Cruel. It was his MO to leave a false motive as a misleading clue. In each case, so far, he had done that. Usually it had been verbal, something one of the parents or siblings could relate to the police. While the police were chasing false clues, this gave him time with the kidnapped Mr.cruelgirls to assault and film them in his hideous lair before he returned them to a street corner somewhere.

He didn’t do that here. He didn’t leave any false clue with the sisters. The false clue was in the lettering of the family car.

But then there was a kink in the MO. Karmein never returned. Despite her mother pleading on the TV, despite days going by, Karmein was never seen again. This wasn’t Mr. Cruel’s MO.

Almost a year later on April 9, 1992, Karmein’s remains were found in a field at a cross street under development. The bulldozer uncovered the skull first. Forensics proved it was Karmein. She had been dispatched by 3 bullets to the back of the head (presumably a small caliber gun).

Chan grave

There is therefore some debate. Was Mr. Cruel responsible? From the broader picture, it seems he was. Therefore there was some speculation. Karmein was pretty feisty.  She was the kind to fight back. It is possible that she got a view of Mr. Cruel and he disposed of her to protect his wicked identity.

If so, this fits with Mr. Cruel’s excessive zeal to protect his identity.  Yet what were the chances that Karmein’s composite of him would truly lead to his identity? Many villains have had more than one sketch done of them by eyewitnesses and have never been caught. Either Mr. Cruel was a very recognizable citizen, had a distinguishing mark under the mask, or he was truly ignorant of the stats that a single eyewitness, even briefly, could lead to his identity.

Either Mr. Cruel was really dumb or really smart, from an evil standpoint anyway. Or perhaps she saw something more incriminating. Perhaps she saw the lair and it was in a distinctive area.

In any event, Mr. Cruel was obviously cold-blooded enough to commit the murder of a 13 year old child just on the belief he was protecting his identity.

Mr. Cruel never struck again. Either killing Karmein took too much out of him or. . . or why? Perhaps because he had a murder charge hanging over him now, and the coward realized it was too risky. He disappeared, and remains one of Australia’s most sought after villains.

As this case ends the known and accepted Mr. Cruel attacks, it is time to go into some analysis. Mr. Cruel left clues, and the most revealing are found in the broader picture of the crime spree and his stalking MO.

In the next post we will begin to assemble these.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

 

 

 

 

In Quest of the real Phantom of the Opera– NORCAL RAPIST

Still . . .

He is the last holdout. He is the last of the calculated predators who methodically assessed their victims long before the fact. He has faded into obscurity and this has helped preserve his evil identity in the shadows despite one victim having put a scar over his right eye. Rapists don’t get the press they deserve. Only murderers get those catchy monikers that draw our attention. This villain in question here is only known as NORCAL Rapist because he traveled the distance between the Bay Area, Sacramento and Chico– thus northern California. But he is more than a rapist. His name and the number of his attacks do not reflect his evil. He is the last of the tainted breed of calculating predators.

He did not waylay. Somehow he found out the identity of his victims and attacked them in their house. He had carefully planned his performance. He wore masks– on a Halloween attack he wore a trick-or-treat mask. He even sluiced some of his dialogue with sarcasm. He had the gall, above all else he did, to even park in one victim’s garage. When she returned home from work, she thought it was her roommate’s friend’s car. It was NORCAL. He had already bound her roommate inside, parked his car in the garage, and awaited his next victim. Just like a spider in its web. He raped both and then took both into the shower to try and get rid of any forensic evidence.

300px-Phantomtechnicolor

Only Sacramento County, as I have said before, filed against his DNA– thus bypassing statute of limitations. I don’t believe any information was officially preserved in the other jurisdictions where he struck. Police reports have probably been thrown out.

He has been silent since 2006. Ten victims fell before him– twice as many as that attributed to Jack the Ripper.

It is essential that this villain is outed. A step in this direction, of course, is detailed information. The location of the strikes need to be revealed. This will assist in finally solving this case. This will eventually reveal his stalking MO and probably how he uncovered and scoped-out his intended victims.  It is still possible to catch this dramatic, taunting home and life breaker.

He attacked in Rohnert Park, Martinez, Vallejo, Woodland, Davis, Sacramento, Chico starting in the early 1990s. He robbed his victims and in one case was captured on an ATM camera wearing a distorting facial mask.

If you have any information, please message or email me. Thank you. It will remain confidential.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.