It’s been 20 years since 6-year-old JonBenét Ramsey was found murdered in her Colorado home, and the killer has never been found. Her case is soon getting the Making A Murderer treatment with a 6-hour documentary miniseries on CBS. In advance of the premiere of this show, JonBenét’s older brother, Burke, is giving his first interview ever. Instead of going to, say, a real journalist, Burke has decided to break his silence and talk to, of all people, Dr. Phil. (CBS distributes the Dr. Phil show and the new mini-series in on the network, so go figure.)
Burke, now 29, will talk about his sister’s murder in a three-part interview, kicking off Dr. Phil’s 15th season (!) on September 12, 13 and 14. The trailer sure doesn’t give much away.
Burke was only 9 when JonBenét was killed. The case baffled investigators, who initially thought the former child beauty queen was kidnapped. The case still has not been solved, and everyone from JonBenét’s parents, John and Patsy, to Burke himself were suspects at some point. DNA evidence ruled out Burke in 1999, and in 2008, his parents were also exonerated.
And then there was the mysterious case of Jon Mark Carr, an elementary school teacher who falsely confessed that he killed JonBenét back in August of 2006. He claimed he assaulted the child, but that her death was an accident. When he was unable to produce any details of the case that weren’t already public knowledge, prosecutors announced that no charges would be filed against Karr for the murder. The press coverage brought the case back into the public eye, but to this day, the real killer has never been found.
In the upcoming interview with Dr. Phil, Burke opens up about the murder, saying “I know people think I did it; that my parents did it.” He goes on to describe his sister’s funeral, recalling, “I remember the viewing. The casket was small. Her eyes were closed.” When asked why he waited 20 years to finally speak out, Burke said, “I want to honor her memory by doing this interview. I don’t want anyone to forget.”
As I mentioned, the case is being revisited on the CBS-produced Case Closed: JonBenét Ramsey, which is the first installment of a new true-crime anthology program. The 6-hour series airs over 3 nights – September 18, 19 and 25 . Jim Clemente, one of the original FBI investigators on the case, and Laura Richards, a Scotland Yard Behavioral Analyst, will work with many of the other former investigators on the case to try and get to the bottom of this 20-year mystery. In addition to improved technology, the investigators are also using a full-sized recreation of the the Colorado home where the crime occurred. The trailer looks pretty compelling. I’m in.
Even with all of this new insight, interviews and technology, can this team actually solve a case that’s been open for 20 years? Well, Making A Murderer freed Brandon Dassey, so stranger things have happened. And, since they do have 6 hours to cover everything, maybe they can address the wacky conspiracy theory that popped up earlier this year claiming that Katy Perry is actually the grown-up JonBenét. That’s a show I would definitely tune into.