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Rod Westmoreland

Page history last edited by Miss Marple 2 years, 11 months ago

 


The Rod Westmoreland Theory

Background

Who is Rod Westmoreland?

  • Rod Westmoreland, a Merrill Lynch senior vice president, is the individual who assisted John Ramsey in assembling the ransom amount on the morning of December 26.
  • Westmoreland flatly denies being in Boulder on the night JBR was killed.

     

Who is undrtheradar?

To date, only a lone Internet poster undrtheradar has asserted the claim that Rod Westmoreland may have been responsible for killing JBR.

  • undrtheradar's identity originally was not made public; however, on January 4, 2007, undrtheradar briefly "reappeared" at Topix.net to assert that he would be making his identity known in 2007 as he had no intention of running or hiding from Lin Wood or Rod Westmoreland. This post was removed by moderators within 5 hours of being posted, but appears on Websleuths courtesy of Internet poster JC.
  • Moreover, by his own self-report (see end of Part 1), undrtheradar has long ago shared his suspicions with Michael Tracey (who promised to forward them to Lou Smit) and the Boulder DA's office, so these individuals presumably knew who he was at the time the Westmoreland suit was filed in November 2006 (see below).
  • Topix.net requires no registration, but does display the location of each poster, presumably based on an IP address. undrtheradar at certain times appeared to post from Minneapolis, MN and claimed in at least one post to have been from Minnesota. However, it is not clear whether Topix.net retains these IP addresses; moreover IP addresses can be faked using widely available "anonymizer" services. There is no way of saying whether undrtheradar made use of such services.
  • Websleuths requires a "real" e-mail address associated with an identifiable ISP: free email addresses such as gmail, hotmail or Yahoo mail are not permitted. It is unknown what other personal information the forum or the forum owner, Tricia Griffith, would have to identify undrtheradar.
  • On February 28, 2007, undrtheradar released his identity in a biosketch.

 

Suit by Rod Westmoreland Against undrtheradar.

This poster has been sued by Mr. Westmoreland for both libel and assault, the former based on allegedly libelous threats posted at Topix.net and Websleuths and the latter based on verbal threats included in some of poster undrtheradar's posts at Topix.net.

  • Mr. Westmoreland filed his suit anonymously, but his identity was quickly revealed at The Smoking Gun.
  • Moreover, since undrtheradar's claims continue to be readily available on the Internet despite efforts by Topix.net and Websleuths to remove them, Mr. Westmoreland's identity can be straightforwardly deduced by any member of the public even had The Smoking Gun not explicitly identified him as the plaintiff in this suit.
  • Ironically, the allegedly libelous claims against Mr. Westmoreland arguably have received far wider public circulation as a consequence of the suit than they ever conceivably could have received on forums dedicated to Ramsey discussions that receive relative little daily traffic compared to a site such as The Smoking Gun.
  • On January 4, 2007, undrtheradar briefly "reappeared" at Topix.net to assert that he would be countersuing Mr. Westmoreland even if they dropped their suit. This post was removed by moderators within 5 hours of being posted, but appears on Websleuths courtesy of Internet poster JC.

 

Public Purpose in Posting This Theory

undrtheradar's theory is being posted here on the same basis as all other theories contained on this wiki: to let readers understand both the basis for why some may view an individual as a possible suspect, but also to provide the countervailing evidence against that claim.

  • Miss Marple believes there is a strong public interest in letting readers judge for themselves whether they believe undrtheradar's suspicions about Mr. Westmoreland warrant further investigation. It is not, and never has been the purpose of this wiki to ascertain guilt or innocence of any suspect in this case.
  • All of the theories on this wiki has varying degrees of plausibility, some perhaps vanishingly small. At this point in time, no one can be 100% certain who did this, although some (including undrtheradar) claim to be. Most suspects in this case are not public figures (Mr. Westmoreland also claims not to be a public figure, although a case could be made that he is an involuntary limited-purpose public figure insofar as his name has appeared in numerous newspaper accounts and books related to the case). Nevertheless, the Internet is replete with speculations over whether individuals X, Y or Z might be implicated in light of the available evidence.
  • As the case of John Mark Karr illustrates, even in the case of an individual judged after investigation not to have killed JBR, there is value in publicly discussing the possibility of how a suspect such as Mr. Karr "fits the evidence" insofar as insights gleaned from such assessments may provide useful insights into the type of individual (or their skills or capabilities) may have committed this killing.
  • This case also raises very interesting legal questions with respect to the legal obligations and liabilities of discussion boards in terms of policing the behavior of their members, the ability of plaintiffs to compel such boards to disclose personal identifying information and where the line between the first amendment and libel should be drawn in a high visibility crime case entailing literally hundreds of theoretically plausible suspects. In theory, a case such as this could be used to educate students in law school, media studies or other disciplines about the myriad of issues that arise and how an appropriate balancing of interests can be achieved.

 

How is This Wiki Different Than Discussion Boards?

  • In contrast to the very episodic and discontinuous fashion it appeared on discussion boards (resulting in at least some readers seeing only the most inflammatory postings without fully understanding the reasoning behind them or the context in which they had been written), undrtheradar's theory is offered here "in toto" and verbatim without any editing so that readers can better understand the reasoning behind these claims and judge for themselves whether they are sufficient to withstand the unequivocal denials contained in the complaint against undrtheradar.
  • Caveat Emptor. Miss Marple strongly cautions that he is not in a position to judge the truthfulness of undrtheradar's claims and that their appearance on this wiki in no way should be viewed as an endorsement of the veracity of those claims. Miss Marple has never met undrtheradar nor has Miss Marple ever met or communicated with Rod Westmoreland; hence, he is in no position to ascertain which of these competing accounts is truthful.

 

  • General Observations. Some general observations are in order:
  1. First, as undrtheradar states in his email to AP, "I have nothing personal against Rod Westmoreland, I have never met the man. The only way I learned of Rod Westmoreland is because the clues led me to him."
  2. Second, as shown in the case of John Mark Karr, even individuals whose presence in Boulder on the night of December 26 had not been established could be viewed as sufficiently suspicious to warrant arresting. So the mere fact that undrtheradar has in no way provided any direct proof that Mr. Westmoreland was not in Boulder that night is itself not sufficient grounds for eliminating his theory.
  3. Indeed, John Andrew Ramsey was officially cleared by Boulder authorities relatively early in the case on grounds that a sufficient alibi had been established for his being in Atlanta on the night JBR was killed. But this has not stopped posters from questioning the basis of that alibi and speculating about the possibility that JAR flew in a private plane to Boulder that night and/or was otherwise involved in a conspiracy with friends to have JBR killed.
  4. Likewise, OJ Simpson has flatly and repeatedly denied killing his ex-wife, yet a sizable fraction of Americans nevertheless believe (and indeed assert) that he did it. Thus, the fact that Mr. Westmoreland denies undrtheradar's accusations too is not sufficient grounds for preemptively burying undrtheradar's suspicions.
  5. What is unquestionably clear for those who take the time to read this material in its entirety is that undrtheradar a) has no inside information about this case: all of his claims are based purely on what is in the readily available public record; and b) as noted above, he is not in any way personally familiar with Rod Westmoreland and harbors no personal animosity towards him. As one specific example, on January 4, 2007, undrtheradar briefly "reappeared" at Topix.net to state that he had found information about Mr. Westmoreland's wine cellar by Googling Mr. Westmoreland's name and looking under a search result titled "Atlanta wine auction." This post was removed by moderators within 5 hours of being posted, but appears on Websleuths courtesy of Internet poster JC.

 

Thus, unlike Internet poster BadAppleDetective, whose vituperative claims against a suspect he apparently knew, appeared motivated by willful malice, undrtheradar's claims appear to Miss Marple to be motivated by a sincere belief that this is where the evidence leads him. Consequently, undrtheradar views Rod Westmoreland as a suspect worthy of "checking out" by law enforcement. In a case that has had at least 140 official suspects, it should be clear that the bar for officially investigating suspicions against an individual is far lower than the reasonable doubt bar needed to convict a person. Conversely, suggesting that police explore the possibility of having committed this crime is very far from any guarantee or certainty that an individual in fact did so.

 

Incriminating Evidence Against Rod Westmoreland

The analysis of undrtheradar appears here verbatim as provided to this site. Readers are cautioned that they alone are responsible for ascertaining the validity of these claims in light of the counter-claims made in Mr. Westmoreland suit against undrtheradar. undrtheradar also has written to ap.org further stating his position in this case.

 

  • Westmoreland was One of John Ramsey's "Atlanta Fat Cats." The RN alludes to John Ramsey being a "fat cat." In his police interviews, John Ramsey referred to Westmoreland as being part of "the Atlanta fat cats" (details at acandyrose.com).

 

Exculpatory Evidence Favoring Rod Westmoreland

 

Legal Complaint. The full complaint against undrtheradar is here, but of most relevance here are the following assertions:

  • 11. "Plaintiff was not in Boulder, Colorado at the time of JonBenét’s death."
  • 12. "Plaintiff is not, and has never been, the focus of any law enforcement investigation into JonBenét Ramsey’s death."
  • 13. "Plaintiff did not write the ransom note."
  • 14. "Plaintiff did not murder JonBenét Ramsey."
  • 17. "Plaintiff was not in Erie, Pennsylvania at the time of the Brian Wells’ murder.
  • 18. "Plaintiff is not, and has never been, the subject of any law enforcement investigation into Brian Wells’ murder.
  • 19. "Plaintiff did not write the “instructions” to Brian Wells.
  • 20. "Plaintiff did not murder Brian Wells.
  • 48. "From the beginning of the law enforcement investigation of the murder of JonBenét Ramsey to the present date, law enforcement officials have never stated that Plaintiff is a suspect in connection with the murder of JonBenét Ramsey."
  • 49. "Plaintiff had no involvement whatsoever in the murder of JonBenét Ramsey and has no knowledge of how she was murdered or who is responsible for this heinous crime."
  • 50. "At the time of their posting, Defendant knew that the false accusations about Plaintiff were unverified and unsubstantiated."
  • 51. "Defendant’s false accusations regarding Plaintiff demonstrate an intentional disregard for the truth and evidence in the well-publicized investigation of the death of JonBenét Ramsey."

 

  • Westmoreland Interviewed by Detectives. According to the Bonita Papers, "While in Atlanta, the detectives also talked with Rod Westmoreland by telephone for a brief interview. Westmoreland, who works for Merrill Lynch in Atlanta but was out of town at the time of the interview was John's best friend and financial consultant. He had assisted the family with the funeral arrangements both in Boulder and in Atlanta."
  • John Ramsey Never Accused Westmoreland, Despite Including Him Among "Fat Cats." Nothing in the police interviews suggests John Ramsey was ever suspicious of Westmoreland (details at acandyrose.com).

 

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