Odd Theories About The Zodiac Killer

The Zodiac Killer got away with it.  For 40 years different theories have come up on why and how he was never caught – from police ineptitude to the multiple killer theory to him simply being…well, clever.

Here are some interesting theories I’ve heard about the Zodiac from an array of people.  Some funny, some plausible and some that in a weird way, make sense.

DISCLAIMER – I’m aware of how passionate people are about the case…these are just theories I’ve heard that I found interesting…they don’t necessarily reflect my own…so enjoy them.

The Zodiac was multiple people

THEORY: One of the biggest questions about the Zodiac killings is why the main suspect – Arthur Leigh Allen – seemed to fit every piece of circumstantial evidence, but didn’t match the DNA from stamps on letters the Zodiac sent nor the handwriting that made them up.  He had so much circumstantial evidence on him that it was actually a surprise to detectives when he didn’t match the DNA or handwriting.

WHY IT MAKES SENSE: The thing about Zodiac and Allen, is that he always seemed to be at the right place at the right time if he was the killer.  He came home with a bloody knife the day Berryessa happened and he lived extremely close to the restaurant Darlene Ferrin worked at amongst other things.  The person that wrote the letters had details about the killings, but didn’t match his handwriting.  One friend kills, tells the other friend about it, and he writes it out…over and over.

PROBLEM WITH THIS: This one makes the most sense, but like any crime involving multiple people, there is usually one idiot that brags – and nobody has.

He was the father of Scientology

THEORY: Zodiac was L. Ron Hubbard

WHY IT MAKES SENSE: Because he was a fan of strawberry shortcake.

PROBLEM WITH THIS: It’s ridiculous.

Paul Stine’s killer was a copycat

THEORY: Paul Stine’s killer was a Zodiac copycat.  This would make the famous Zodiac description and letter verification inaccurate.

WHY IT MAKES SENSE: Zodiac’s famous wanted poster came from the descriptions from teenagers that witnessed Paul Stine’s killer leaving the cab.  It was also compared to Officer Dan Fouke’s witnessing of what is thought to be the same man walking away from the crime scene.  That poster looks like this:

scott vincent zodiac jiu jitsu nuclearchainsaw pictures of zodiac

..but another (and less-famous sketch) of the killer looks like this:                      different zodiac composite…and it was from witnesses that saw a strange man at Lake Berryessa the day of the Berryessa killings.  Before passing away, Cecilia Shepard told investigators that the man who stabbed them had black curly hair that she saw before he put on the famous Zodiac executioner hood…it also fell out in front of his sunglasses before the attack.  She also described the killer as “overweight”….all traits of Allen and in no way comparable to the Stine killer who was described as having glasses, a crew cut,  receding hairline and was at least “100 pounds” lighter than Allen according to Officer Dan Fouke.

Seems like two different people doesn’t it?  It would also explain why the bloody fingerprint in Stine’s cab didn’t match any of the Zodiac suspects.

PROBLEM WITH THIS: This makes sense in that Zodiac is thought to have taken credit for crimes he read about in the paper.  What doesn’t make sense is that if someone wanted to use Zodiac’s habit of claiming guilt to get away with a crime, why would they mail Stine’s shirt to the police and risk getting caught just to give Zodiac credit?

He was a cop

THEORY: Zodiac was a police officer…pure and simple.

WHY IT MAKES SENSE: This isn’t necessarily a new theory, but one that I’ve always took a shine to.  Zodiac was always one step ahead…would do outlandish things like dress up in an executioner’s mask at a public lake or shoot kids in a well-known make-out point.  This would make sense if he knew where police were patrolling.  He also is theorized to have left a fake finger print in Stine’s cab which would have given him forensic knowledge of the day – which was pretty much just limited to that – finger prints.

But the best evidence of him being in law enforcement was the pattern of his killing… he killed in Napa County, Solano County and San Francisco…which are all different police jurisdictions.  He knew this would create confusion and “evidence hiding” between the police forces…and it did.

PROBLEM WITH THIS:  Dave Toschi (Dirty Harry) was well-known and one of the premier investigators of the time – and he was on the Zodiac case.  Being a cop, Zodiac would have known this and that’s like challenging a ram to a headbutting contest.  So unless this cop wanted to seriously risk getting caught by getting investigated by the best detective of the day…let alone the area, chances are slim on this one.

 Zodiac was a Vietnam veteran

THEORY: Zodiac was a rare serial killer because he was able to stop killing – which isn’t a trait of serial killers at all.  The theory is that Zodiac must have been imprisoned, killed or relocated.  Generally speaking, this theory points that Zodiac was deployed to Vietnam, killed in action and therefore stopped killing and all letters past his death are not genuine.

WHY IT MAKES SENSE: Code training, size 10 1/2 wing-walker boots issued primarily by the Navy, choice of killing was a firearm…it has been theorized that Zodiac was a member of the armed forces or a veteran of such.  The U.S. involvement in Vietnam was from 1961 to the mid 1970’s – 1969 being the year when most U.S. troops were committed to the war (roughly 550,000).  Zodiac’s last confirmed killing was Paul Stine (if we forego the copycat theory) on October 11, 1969.  So it isn’t completely unfathomable that Zodiac got deployed after the Stine killing, got sent to Vietnam in the height of U.S. involvement and died, which would successfully stop his killing spree…or maybe he came back in 1974 after not writing for 3 years  (the famous “Me – 37, SFPD – 0” letter) and was bragging about his kills in Vietnam which would explain why there weren’t 32 more bodies found by the police department.  Don’t forget the Zodiac was described as having a crew cut in the Stine murder…popular in any military branch.

PROBLEM WITH THIS:  There isn’t really a problem with this so much as an issue with “what in the fuck are the chances of this?” .  This is an incredible amount of dedication if he was also stressed out with being in Vietnam every couple of years…not to mention staying alive himself.

Categories: EVERYTHING (in no particular order), Humor

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7 replies

  1. He confessed to me in the chapel alone he used to sit himself and cry ,the chapel was in the cellar I believe he said his family had disowned him cause his sexuality he walked tall as I we got on I had recently left armed forces he had a moustache and the second sketch looks more like him he wore glasses was about 6ft my parents met him im talking thirteen years ago ,if police are still interested ill tell them about his vague confessions he was well off the place was £500per day dont quote me but his pension was paying it

  2. I met him in a rehab In Scotland I didnt no what he was on about he spent a lot of time in the rehabs chapel alone he said he was from sanfransisco he was very intelligent had a drink problem due to his battle with his homosexualilty im from Kilmarnock Scotland it was strange for a man from sf to be in scotland I think he was staying in holland this was fifteen years ago he confessed

  3. There is the Bruce Davis connection to the Gaul/Sharp murders in LA and the fact that Gaul and Sharp were Scientologists. Maybe Bruce Davis had to use the Zodiac Killer disquise to cover up the tattoo on his face. Did they let him get laser in prison?! Manson was into Scientology!

  4. Could have been a cop or someone close to cops. His rants about the SFPD make me conclude he was a Napa resident, since he killed all his victims within one hours drive of downtown Napa.He never ranted about Napa cops, and only mentioned Riverside, SF, Vallejo ..never Napa..The letters were a way to take away suspicion,..I believe the Zodiac may have actually been a reporter, since he would have access to investigators and could have known when shift changers were, etc. He killed in unincorporated areas mostly..This guy was very smart.Napa was known as a very corrupt place, and we all know that Napa and Vallejo cops are notoriously corrupt.

  5. Let me add some other far fetched theories! What if he was obsessed with the Zodiac because he was adopted. He didn’t have access to information like his actual birth date and the identity of his birth mother. He was frustrated by not knowing his own birth sign. He compensated by studying the Zodiac trying to find himself. The radians were important to him because he was an engineer. I was reading about the author John D. MacDonald who won the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master award in 1972 which made me wonder if he stopped killing because of an accomplishment or an answer he couldn’t have found before! It is terrible for us not to know who he is and it was terrible for him to not know who he was. So he tormented us so we’d know how he felt. Maybe the adoptive parents just answered him with some rude comment like “Who was your mother? Just some tramp that went out to the woods in a car and got laid!” So he was saving some other person from having his fate. He was stopping the couples from procreation. He could have come from some black market adoption agency like Georgia Tann’s. Maybe all these clues he gave us were only to point to other suspects. The clues weren’t even about him but about other men. If you got all those suspects’ names together, is there anyone they have in common? Who would have known them that they didn’t even know? I was sitting in a doctor’s office here in Brunswick County, NC and a local man with a Zodiac watch spoke about having been a diver near Guam in the mid 1960’s. Haven’t you ever looked at a stranger and wondered if the Zodiac Killer was still alive he could be about anyone! I’m thankful for every person that has suffered, thinking his own father was the Zodiac Killer. The number of those guys are growing. I’d personally be more likely to cover for my father. But I’m not all there. One question I have is why Charles Manson is more popular than Tex Watson who was the actual hands on killer. There were so many suspects that if a man really did confess, wouldn’t the police just think he was crazy? He’d be put in an institution and his family would try to keep him there!

  6. It’s true Lr Hubbard had a thing for strawberries and short-cake. Pam Darlene Ferrins sister saw an older man
    at the restaurant that had an obsession for this desert. According to Pam the man was older and heavy-set
    and wore what appeared to be a medical bracelet. What was a medical bracelet could have been a Church of Scientolgy bracelet. exibit one

    There has been a discrepancy in the descriptions of the Zodiac , He has been described as a younger man in his mid 20’s 5’8 and as a older man 35 to 45 5’11 inches tall brown, brown reddish hair, weight any were from 160 pounds to 210 pounds. Hubard was just under 6’0 foo tall weighing over 200 pounds in his latter years. He would have been in his fifties
    making him to old . But this does not mean he was not at Darlene Painting party.

    According to many profiles the Zodiac served in the USN. lR. Hubbard Served as a officer in the USN .Hubbard had his own Navy Church of Scientology who were a paramilitary group following Naval rules wearing uniforms that are exactly
    like the United States Navy but wearing a different insignia . Hubbard Captined the Ship Apollo which was the flgs shipp of the COS navy, The Zodiac killer used Apollo stamps on his letters. EXHIBT TWO SHIP APOLLO.
    These are some examlples of evidence i found and theres more check out there profies on my site.

  7. The lr hubbard theory is not so far fetched.
    Example . Both LR. and the zodiac were in the Navy. The Zodiac used Apollo stamps on his letters . Lr Hubbard Captain his flag ship the Apollo. The Zodiac said you would find his name on the bottom of scotch tape dispenser.the name on the bottom of the dispenser was DuPont lr Hubbard live on DuPont Streetin Washington DC it was the headquarters for the Church of Scientology. Lr Hubbard b

    nautical knot while and maybe as well as a boy scout

    emlived on Dupont Street and Washington DC

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