Well, this week the media went berzerk over the break in the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation, when creepy teacher John Mark Karr was arrested in Thailand for the murder and confessed to the crime, saying it was an "accident".
And the whole national media in the United States went nuts. It wasn't just the cable nets that were going ape, it was also the evening newscasts. Every one of them had this arrest as their top story. But frankly, you can tell this wasn't the favorite story of a lot of people on the newscasts. Campbell Brown was subbing for Brian Williams on NBC and she looked decidedly like a woman who was wishing that the Israel-Hezbollah war was still on. She looked MISERABLE, covering this story.
All the usual people- Marcia Clark, Dr. Henry Lee, all of them- got trotted out. I noticed Dan Abrams, who runs MSNBC these days, got hauled out of the management office to be a legal commentator again. He was pretty good, he was saying that there a lot of questions that needed answered and that DNA testing needed to be completed. A lot of other commentators were totally jumping the gun, though, and saying this guy's story was totally unraveling. I mean really, network news has gone into the deep end this week. They went straight from serious international coverage of war and chaos to coverage of... tabloid news. What else can you call this story? It's just sad, and gruesome.
Anyway, people don't know whether they got the real killer or not. Certainly he's made some strange statements that don't seem to match up with what's happened. You have his ex-wife who said he was at home at the time of the murders. In fact, there's no evidence he's ever been to Colorado. And he's claiming he committed a sexual assault on this poor girl, when the investigators say that there was no evidence of any sexual assault. On the other hand, there was some pretty incriminating stuff on the ransom note that actually seemed to point the finger at Karr. And he might well have been in Colorado at the time of the murder, the wife's memory doesn't seem to be good on this one. And he knows a lot about this case and what happened, so he's either complicit in what happened or one of these obsessive types who is obsessive about the case--- one of these guys who watches too much Court TV.
So I don't know what to make of this guy's statements. Certainly he seems like a complete nut. But I want to see the DNA evidence before I make a judgement about whether he did it. What bothers me is that this weirdo knows too much about this case. That disturbs me a lot.
What also bothers me is that the media and all these commentators seem intent on jumping the gun and making snap judgements based on his initial bizarre statements. It repeats a sad pattern. These so-called experts were all accusing John and Patsy Ramsey of committing the murder, and these folks also went after Representative Gary Condit and basically accused him of murdering this D.C. intern when he didn't, and they went after Richard Jewell in Atlanta and accused him of planting that bomb at the Olympics when he didn't. I think maybe it would be a good idea if everyone calmed down for a few days and allowed the justice system to run its course. But these people at the 24-hour news networks seem desperate for ratings and desperate to find a way to milk this story. Especially now that all the apocalyptic World War III happenings are over with in the Middle East for the time being. They still don't have any hurricanes to cover yet, even though it's the hurricane season. And Castro hasn't died, either. They need to fill time with some big stories, the death of actor Bruno Kirby won't quite cut it. So they cover this JonBenet Ramsey business instead, because it's such a bizarre story.
Anyway, check out Court TV which has a wrapup of what's gone on. I think we'll know more when the DNA samples get tested and come back. My interest in this case comes from a purely CSI-type interest in the evidence and collecting the DNA samples and all that. I was interested in the OJ case for much the same reason. If the DNA testing evidence points the finger at Karr, well, that's going to be huge.
And when that comes down you can bet that Larry King will be all over it, and so will Greta's show, and same for Nancy Grace and Catherine Crier and all these other law shows on TV.