Is This The Zodiac Speaking?
In his book, Dr. Hewitt suggests that the nonsensical ramblings of the Zodiac have spelt out his true identity all along – in ‘ rough anagram’ form
“ask the sound of your cruzei”
( 6- Page letter, page 2)
Theodore Kaczynski “The Mikado
Opera” ( Torture letter, pages 2, 3- 5,
I am Theodore
H PhD “I am crack
( LA Times letter)
I am Prof
The FBI, when they took codes out of Kaczynski’s cabin, they said some of these codes are the most complex we’ve seen
since the height of the Cold War
killed three people using guns and so people assumed it was a threat to use a gun again. But the Zodiac himself used it in other situations by making marks around it, placing it on Mount Diablo, and putting numbers around it – and that’s not what you do with a crosshair symbol.
Why do you think police didn’t find any evidence in his cabin that directly linked him to the Zodiac?
Because he had 25 years to sanitise his cabin and make sure he had nothing attaching him to that, and the reason for that is because the Zodiac campaign was a failed campaign and he came to be understood as some sick psycho. Kaczynski did not want to be identified as that, he wanted to be seen as an intelligent person who had good reasons for killing people.
There’s no forensic match between the items in the cabin and the Zodiac case, but what I found very interesting was that there were categories of items that you would expect to find in the home of the person who was responsible for the Zodiac crimes: disguises, precisely the type of disguises, a hood and sunglasses. There was also bomb- making materials and bomb diagrams, which is similar to Zodiac stuff. There were codes and keys to codes.
If you look at those three categories of items and pick any other serial killer, they didn’t have those categories of items in their homes, and whatever they did find did not give any indication whatsoever that there was a connection to the Zodiac, but with Kaczynski all three of these categories were there [ in his home].
Both Kaczynski and the Zodiac liked to express themselves through their writings and through codes. You’ve looked into the contents of both their writings, is there a noticeable comparison between the two?
Oh totally. Not so much with codes because Kaczynski’s codes tended to be quite a bit different to the Zodiac, but then again they were written 25 years apart and obviously the Zodiac was writing codes that were not meant to look like those of a mathematician. So there’s less of a comparison there, other than the fact that both were involved in writing codes. What I found interesting was that none of the Zodiac codes used numbers as symbols. A mathematician would be very careful to differentiate between numbers and symbols. At the same time, Kaczynski wrote a code that was entirely in numbers so it also separated numbers from symbols, as you would expect from a good mathematician.
The Zodiac obviously wrote with a certain amount of staging involved. He apparently attempted to dumb down his letters, taking out most of the big words and used awkward phrasing, making it look as though he wasn’t able to spell very well, didn’t know grammar and violated all types of grammatical rules. But if you look at it very closely you realise that it was the work of somebody who was quite intelligent and quite educated. The biggest clue to me was the ‘ More Material’ letter, which incorporates three semicolons in it. Most people don’t write with semicolons, they don’t know how to, or if they were to try would do it incorrectly. Well the three semicolons in that letter are used exactly correctly and that shows somebody who has at least a college education, probably grad school education, so that gives us an indication that this person is a whole lot more intelligent than he’s letting on.
above What first appeared to be a gun sight, a signal that the Zodiac would strike again, Mark says resembles a mathematical diagram of the equation
X2+ Y2= 1, which was a part of mathematical genius Kaczynski’s published works
I noted similarities between the wording of the Zodiac letters and the Unabomber manifesto, between the Zodiac letters and the 1971 document written by Kaczynski, and then huge comparisons between vocabulary, grammar, punctuation and spelling. Also there was all kind of things with the Zodiac letters and The Secret Agent by Joseph Conrad, which is significant as it’s a favourite book of Kaczynski.
What do you think can be said about the Zodiac’s 340- character cipher that remains, like the zodiac himself, unsolved. Is this the work of Kaczynski?
No, not that I have found, that remains a big mystery to me. I can speculate based on if Kaczynski had prepared it, and if he had there’s a good reason it hasn’t been broken: it’s because he’s a brilliant mathematician and if he didn’t want it broken he could make it complex enough to be unbreakable. The FBI, when they took codes out of Kaczynski’s cabin, they said some of these codes are the most complex codes we’ve seen since the height of the Cold War. If it weren’t for keys included in the cabin they never would have been able to decipher them.
You wrote to Ted Kaczynski at the supermax prison in Colorado: tell us a bit about what you noticed from his letters to you.
We exchanged letters, and there was no smoking gun in any of the letters that he sent me, but there were little hints here and there that it was the same person. If anything was a smoking gun it was how he wrote the word ‘ Zodiac’ in his own handwriting in the final letter that he sent me. In my book I line that up and compare it to the Zodiac’s use of that word, and they look very similar to me.
The high- profile arrest of Joseph DeAngelo for the Golden State Killer crimes puts cold cases like the Zodiac killings back on the map. Do you think genealogy would be a good avenue for investigators to explore with the Unabomber and Zodiac?
That would be my absolute dream – that my book comes out, people have a few months to get comfortable with the idea and then ‘ boom’, the DNA match is made. That would be absolutely fantastic because in modern society DNA is everything. Now we have become hyper- focused on it, but we have got to remember that, back in 1986 and before then, we were still able to catch criminals and put them behind bars without DNA. So I think what I offer in my book is a literary DNA comparison – a new field of literary forensics or forensic linguistics.
It’s easy to compare somebody’s writing if they write something on Wednesday and then write something else on Thursday, but what we have is two people writing 25 years apart and some of the writing is deliberately staged, so the handwriting is fake, the grammar is fake and the spelling is fake. How do you compare somebody who is staging one thing with writing that they’ve done on another occasion when they weren’t feeling compelled? I believe a match can be made, but you have to realise the differences in the staging and realise that despite the staging there are still incredible comparisons to be made with vocabulary, with sentence structure, with paragraph structure, with grammar, and even with the faked grammar. I believe that eventually literary forensics will start to catch up and realise that ‘ Mark has made a comparison and he’s spot on with his identification’.
below- left Forensic linguist and the former FBI agent who helped snare the Unabomber, James R. Fitzgerald, has denounced all speculation that the Unabomber and the Zodiac killer are the same person
above- left Kaczynski’s cabin was a treasure trove of evidence against him for the Unabomber crimes. Just like the Zodiac, he had drafted bomb diagrams, but unlike the Zodiac, the Unabomber had actually followed through on these plansabove Ted Kaczynski following his arrest. Kaczynski has never indicated that he is linked to the Zodiac killer