Real Crime - - Contents - Words Tanita Matthews

In­ves­ti­ga­tor Mark He­witt digs out ev­i­dence on the Zo­diac Killer cold case that points to a fa­mil­iar fig­ure

For decades the Zo­diac killer has re­mained as enig­matic as his ci­phers, but a new in­ves­ti­ga­tion has yielded ev­i­dence that points to a very fa­mil­iar fig­ure

The dev­as­tat­ing af­ter­math of the Zo­diac killings have long haunted the state of Cal­i­for­nia. Begin­ning on a brisk au­tumn evening in the late 1960s, the un­known se­rial killer tar­geted his vic­tims in the shad­ows of lo­cal lovers’ lanes, leav­ing be­hind barely a shred of ev­i­dence. Not sat­is­fied with his slay­ing, s he ter­rorised the pub­lic with a se­ries of threats and enig­matic clues in the form of let­ters and codes, which spurred fear into the hearts of peo­ple ev­ery­where. In the early 1970s the Zo­diac ap­par­ently ceased his hunt­ing, prompt­ing peo­ple to ask if he had died or been caught for another crime when the trail went cold. Cal­i­for­nian au­thor Dr. Mark He­witt has spec­u­lated that per­haps the Zo­diac did not dis­ap­pear, but sim­ply evolved.

His lat­est book, Ex­posed: The Zo­diac Re­vealed, is the last in the se­ries of his re­search- driven tril­ogy on the long- stand­ing cold case that after more than a decade has re­vealed the iden­tity of the Zo­diac killer as none other than ‘ Un­abomber’ Theodore Kaczyn­ski. The do­mes­tic US ter­ror­ist is serv­ing eight con­sec­u­tive life sen­tences for three mur­ders com­mit­ted dur­ing the com­mis­sion of a uni­ver­sity and air­line mail- bomb­ing spree be­tween 1978 and 1995. Speak­ing to Real Crime, Dr. He­witt re­veals why sev­eral pieces of ev­i­dence link Kaczyn­ski to one of the world’s most in­fa­mous crimes and why, de­spite the case’s high- pro­file sta­tus, Kaczyn­ski will never claim re­spon­si­bil­ity for the Zo­diac killings.

What alerted you to the the­ory that Kaczyn­ski could be the Zo­diac?

In 2007 I de­cided to go in full- time and throw my­self into the case com­pletely. I de­cided I was go­ing to read every­thing I could pos­si­bly read, and one of the books that I came across was en­ti­tled The Un­abomber And The Zo­diac [ by Dou­glas Oswell]. When I first got the book I thought, “Some­body ob­vi­ously is pick­ing on one se­rial killer and plug­ging him into the iden­tity of another one,” and I didn’t even see the tie be­tween the two.

I thought about it a lit­tle bit and I re­alised, “Oh yeah OK the bomb­ings” – the Un­abomber was into bomb­ings and the Zo­diac used two bomb di­a­grams in his let­ters. After read­ing the book, a cou­ple of items men­tioned within para­graphs re­ally caused me to stop and think, and so I did more re­search into it. I was work­ing with a friend at the time on it and it was like pick­ing at a ball of wool – pulling on an end here and pulling on an end there and start­ing to make con­nec­tions. The more I looked the more it be­came clear that Kaczyn­ski was re­spon­si­ble.

There have been many the­o­ries as to the Zo­diac’s iden­tity, why should the pub­lic sit up and take note of this one more than the oth­ers?

Why in­deed? That’s the draw­back of the whole case be­cause there have been so many books writ­ten and so many the­o­ries thrown out. All I can say is it’s the con­clu­sions of my re­search, 11 years worth of study into the case, and the other the­o­ries kind of fall short. There’s been a cot­tage in­dus­try

over the last decade of peo­ple putting to­gether books claim­ing, “It was my fa­ther” or “It was my un­cle”, etc. and all of them seize upon one or two lit­tle pieces of in­for­ma­tion, lit­tle items, [ such as] “The way the Zo­diac wrote an ‘ e’ in the third page of the ‘ More Ma­te­rial’ let­ter [ 4 Au­gust 1969] looks like the way my fa­ther wrote an ‘ e’ back in 1972.” And that passes for ‘ ev­i­dence’.

What I found in my re­search was six or seven clus­ters of ev­i­dence that I found to be ex­tremely com­pelling, to the point where it in­vited me to look at the case from a whole new an­gle. Now I’m at the point of say­ing, “How is it pos­si­ble to un­der­stand the case with­out iden­ti­fy­ing that match?”

The time­lines of the Zo­diac and the Un­abomber seem to slot to­gether, but couldn’t that be true of plenty of other po­ten­tial sus­pects?

A lot of other sus­pects have been looked at in that way and none con­vinc­ingly. I think for a lot of peo­ple it’s an un­known in­di­vid­ual so it’s hard to put to­gether a time­line, but with Kaczyn­ski not only do the time­lines match, but the times that Kaczyn­ski can’t be iden­ti­fied or lo­cated, that’s the times when the Zo­diac is present, and the times when the Zo­diac is ab­sent, then we have all of the in­for­ma­tion on Ted Kaczyn­ski’s life.

In your book you say the Zo­diac’s sig­na­ture sym­bol di­rectly cor­re­lates with a math­e­mat­i­cal equa­tion that was part of Ted Kaczyn­ski’s pub­lished math­e­mat­i­cal pa­pers, if that was true why hasn’t any­one men­tioned this be­fore?

Oswell does make that point in his book but no­body was very con­vinced. I think I do a bet­ter job of flesh­ing out ex­actly what it means and how it fits. A hunter, when he draws the crosshair sym­bol, usu­ally omits the mid­dle of it be­cause there needs to be a place to line up to shoot what­ever game [ they’re hunt­ing]. But a cir­cle with a com­plete cross is a di­a­gram of the math­e­mat­i­cal equa­tion X2+ Y2= 1 and that’s very el­e­men­tal to math­e­mat­ics and was used ex­ten­sively in Kaczyn­ski’s re­search. When the Zo­diac first used that sym­bol ev­ery­body took it to mean a gun sight be­cause he had

above- left Although strik­ing com­par­isons can be made be­tween the Zo­diac and the Un­abomber, after he was ar­rested in 1996 Kaczyn­ski was cleared by the FBI and San Fran­cisco Po­lice Depart­ment of hav­ing any con­nec­tion to the Zo­diac case

be­low Kaczyn­ski when he was an as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor at UC Berke­ley in 1967. He was a math­e­mat­i­cal ge­nius and was more than ca­pa­ble of creat­ing im­pen­e­tra­ble ci­phers

mid­dle- left With seven con­firmed vic­tims and a po­ten­tial to­tal of up to 30, in­ves­ti­ga­tors have tire­lessly searched for the Zo­diac killer, but after the killings ceased in 1971, the trail has be­come frozenleft Both Kaczyn­ski and the Zo­diac con­tacted news­pa­pers to threaten fur­ther at­tacks un­less their mes­sages were pub­lished

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