Dispelling GYKE Myths: THE FINGERPRINTS

TomVoigt
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TomVoigt
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Joined: February 21st, 2007, 4:35 am

September 30th, 2009, 2:38 am #1

Some of Goldcatcher's documents have been published elsewhere online and they incorrectly seem to indicate Gyke was eliminated as a Zodiac suspect in 1986 via fingerprints, handwriting and a passport stamp showing Gyke was in Europe in December 1968. Time to correct a myth.

Where to begin? It's true that in October 1965, Gaikowski was intentionally arrested for refusing to sign a traffic citation following a routine stop in Contra Costa County (Calif.). As an investigative reporter for the local newspaper, Gaikowski's goal was to write a story about the conditions within the county jail from the perspective of an inmate. While being booked into jail, his fingerprints would likely have been taken, theoretically making them available to detectives who later investigated him as a Zodiac suspect.

However.

*Gaikowski didn't become a Zodiac suspect until 1986, more than two decades after his arrest

*His arrest was traffic and not criminal in origin*Such records are routinely destroyed after just a few years

*Gaikowski's record shows no criminal history

*Zodiac investigators in 1986 would have had no way to know he had ever been arrested

*Even if the investigators in 1986 somehow found out about his 1965 arrest, the records/fingerprints would have been long gone

*At the time of Gaikowski's arrest, the use of computer databases to store evidence like fingerprints was two decades in the future

*In 1986, if investigators wanted to obtain Gaikowski's fingerprints, they would have needed either Gaikowski's consent or a court order. There is no evidence either happened

*While Gyke was in the army during the 1950s and his prints were taken then, 80% of such records were lost in the 1973 fire in St Louis

Bottom line: 
When Ken Narlow initially learned of Gaikowski in 1986, the first thing he would have done is collect as much data on Gaikowski as possible to determine if he was worthy of investigation. It's during that process when Narlow would have learned of Gaikowski's arrest/fingerprinting, if in fact there was record of it that Narlow could have obtained during this stage. Had Narlow learned of the fingerprints and they still existed, he would have then obtained the fingerprints and performed a comparison between Gaikowski and Zodiac. If it resulted in a match, Narlow would have arrested Gaikowski. If the result wasn't a match, Narlow would not have been able to justify using resources to investigate a non-Napa County resident who had different fingers than Zodiac. Additionally, a fingerprint comparison regardless of result would have made Gaikowski's passport stamp irrelevant and there would have been no need for Narlow to put him under surveillance, etc. Simply put, if the prints were a match then surveillance would have been replaced by an arrest. If the prints weren't a match, well, surveillance and a passport stamp wouldn't change Gaikowski's fingers.
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Joined: March 4th, 2008, 1:06 am

September 30th, 2009, 7:00 pm #2

The US Dept.of State will give copies of passport records.These records go back to 1925.In G's case one needs to send a certificate of death,etc.
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Joined: April 7th, 2007, 12:23 am

September 30th, 2009, 7:07 pm #3

The US Dept.of State will give copies of passport records.These records go back to 1925.In G's case one needs to send a certificate of death,etc.
How hard would it be to obtain his certificate of death?
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TomVoigt
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TomVoigt
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Joined: February 21st, 2007, 4:35 am

September 30th, 2009, 8:46 pm #4

As we've discussed over the last couple of years, back when Gyke was in Europe rules were much more lax than today. Several board members shared their personal experiences of going throughout Europe and not having their passports stamped etc.
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greygost
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Joined: February 25th, 2007, 12:18 pm

October 1st, 2009, 2:02 am #5

State Department passport records from back then will not show port of entry or exit stamps. The only thing immigration officers from foreign countries back then were doing was granting entry and stamping the passport. Who thinks they were gathering information to be sent back to Foggy Bottom? How'd they do it if one thinks so? If the computers were there (back in the mid '70's, much less '60's), I never saw 'em when my passport was getting stamped.
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TomVoigt
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TomVoigt
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Joined: February 21st, 2007, 4:35 am

October 1st, 2009, 11:17 pm #6

I believe Davidmm had a discussion with Narlow about the fingerprints and other stuff...
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davidmm
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Joined: February 25th, 2007, 2:08 am

October 1st, 2009, 11:40 pm #7

I believe Davidmm had a discussion with Narlow about the fingerprints and other stuff...
It's hardly "official," but when I talked to Narlow over a year ago, he told me that Richard had not been investigated formally and had not been eliminated. He told me about his frustrated attempt to stake out Richard, and spent a very long time on the phone with me, discussing our findings. I didn't specifically ask him if he fingerprinted Richard, but if Narlow had eliminated him as a suspect, then Narlow sure wasted a lot of time asking questions about our findings.He agreed to meet with me, and I was working toward sending him some material, but his health took a turn for the worse, and I didn't want to bother him at the wrong time.
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TomVoigt
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TomVoigt
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Joined: February 21st, 2007, 4:35 am

October 1st, 2009, 11:43 pm #8

It's hardly "official," but when I talked to Narlow over a year ago, he told me that Richard had not been investigated formally and had not been eliminated.
Thanks, David. I wonder how long some people will continue to claim Gyke was fingerprinted?
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Joined: February 23rd, 2007, 2:30 pm

October 2nd, 2009, 12:23 am #9

Fingerprinting is a (relatively speaking) cheap and easy means of ruling out suspects. How I wish we could get our hands on the military prints and compare them to the Zodiac evidence - that angle's our best bet, IMO. We don't know if Gyke's records went up in smoke at St. Louis.
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TomVoigt
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TomVoigt
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Joined: February 21st, 2007, 4:35 am

October 2nd, 2009, 2:05 am #10

I should also point out that just because the police look at a particular suspect, that doesn't mean their fingerprints are automatically compared.When he was first investigated, Arthur Leigh Allen (and most other suspects) never had his fingerprints accessed and compared even though it would have been easy to do so.
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