Following the success of gripping crime docudrama series The People vs OJ Simpson, CBS have now ordered a new crime show – with the first series to focus solely on the murder of child pageant star, JonBenét Ramsey. Emmy award winning producer Tom Forman is on board to help create the series.
The Hollywood Reporter revealed: “The first season will focus on the JonBenet Ramsey murder case and could premiere as soon as this fall — timed to the 20th anniversary of the death of the 6-year-old beauty pageant regular.”
In 1996, JonBenét Ramsey was found murdered at her family home in Boulder, Colorado. She was reported missing by her parents – then eight hours later, her body was found in the basement. The case had several grand jury hearings, yet still remains unsolved.
According to the testimony of JonBenet’s mother, Patsy Ramsey, she discovered her daughter was missing after discovering a ransom letter in the kitchen demanding $118,000 for the safe return of her daughter – almost the exact value her husband’s bonus he had received earlier that year. The note said JonBenet would be returned as soon as the money was paid. JonBenet’s father, John Ramsey, made arrangement to pay the ransom and collect the money that morning from a local bank. The instructions were not to call the police or contact any friends, but as 5.45pm that day they rang the police and also contacted friends and family. When officers arrived they found no signs of a forced entry.
John Ramsey searched the basement after the police arrived, he found his daughter’s body covered in a blanket and carried her upstairs in his arms. The police were later ridiculed for allowing the father to move the body from the scene of the crime. A nylon cord had been tied around her neck, her wrists were tied above her head, and her mouth was covered by duct tape. An autopsy revealed that JonBenét had been killed by strangulation and a severe skull fracture.
The Colorado police officers initially suspected JonBenét’s parents and her older brother, Burke. Then in 2003, when DNA was taken from JonBenet’s clothes they were cleared of any wrongdoing. In 2009, the investigation was reopened. Media coverage of the case focused on JonBenet’s time spent in child beauty pageants, her parents’ wealth, and all the unusual evidence found in the case. Several defamation suits have been filed by the Ramsey family against the media as they continue to stress their innocence.