PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby morf13 on Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:52 pm

Regarding the suspicious letter signed "Patricia Hautz" received by the Riverside Press Enterprise, in response to an article written about Cheri Jo Bates, there is some exciting stuff happening regarding the letter. Possibly overlooked clues, new opinions, theories, etc

AK suggested i post about it here. Once I get some more solid info, I will. In the meantime, Ricardo over at MKZODIAC has a good story about it:
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Dec 19, 2009 12:46 pm

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 11:51 am

I told Morf if he got this started I would pick up the ball.

I know both Oswell and Kite have been interested in the letter from "Patricia Hautz" that had so much sympathy for a killer and none for the victim. Now there is new evidence and analysis pointing to what most of us have suspected - that this letter was likley written by the killer himself, who was likely Zodiac.

I will repost some threads here, post the evidence and give my own ideas. Hope to hear what Doug, Kite, Linda, AweShucks, Drew and others think.

Be sure to read the excellent article linked above at the mk-zodiac site, done by Ricardo, none other than unazod poster "gomez". Ricardo (Gomez) is also the one who made some significant discoveries on the possible Zodiac crime of the Santa Barbara beach murders of Domingos and Edwards in 1963 and the suspect Sandy, so kudos again to him. And thanks also to the Foriegner, Bently (Wrench) and Morf for their discoveries and work on this. And to Sandy and Ricardo for tracking down the article, which was not in the paper on 10/1/67 as "Hautz" claimed, but 10/30/67.

Morf:Over at Michael Butterfield's site, I started a thread about this PATRICIA HAUTZ letter received in the Cheri Jo Bates case. The response was pretty intense. At first, alot of people seem to dismiss this letter as NOT being suspicious, and thinking it was from an actual student.

After alot of posts, and heated spirited debating, I think the people that believe it is suspicious, and possibly Zodiac related are starting to take over. Also, there may have been some big clues provided about the letter, that were NOT known before.

I would like to hear some thoughts and ideas on the topic.

Here is the actual letter, and a bit of the history.

*Cheri Jo Bates was murdered 10/30/66 in Riverside.

*A letter was received on the one month anniversary of her death- The typed "confession" letter from somebody claiming to be her killer.

*On the 6 month anniversary of her death, Cheri's Father, the police, and the local paper The Riverside Press Enterprise, all received letters saying "BATES HAD TO DIE, THERE WILL BE MORE". Years later, the writing from these letters would be proven by writing experts to have been written by Zodiac, along with the Desktop poem found in Riverside City College storage.

*On, or around, October 1, 1967, the Press Enterprise published an article about Cheri Jo Bates, and her one year old unsolved murder.

*On November 1, 1967 , a full month later, and almost 30 days later exactly, the Press Enterprise received a type written letter in response to the article they had published a month earlier. The letter basically said, that an article about the killer would be more interesting than one about the victim. It was signed PATRICIA HAUTZ, FELLOW STUDENT. Since the letter sounded so cold, and insensitive, and since there had been multiple letters received in the Bates case, the newspaper was suspicious and turned the letter over to police. Riverside PD looked for a fellow student named Patricia Hautz, but did not find one.

Could this letter have been from her killer,possibly Zodiac?

Years later some researchers, including myself, have been successful finding a student by the last name of Hautz. The issue is that her first name is NOT Patricia, her middle name is. Furthermore, she has never claimed to have written that letter, and it has never been proven that she did.

Alot of people think the letter is from a "fellow student" who was affected by the article, and decided to write a letter to the newspaper. I could buy that, but here is what I dont buy....If you are a fellow student who is affected by the article, and moved to write a letter about it, then why wait until the one month anniversary of the article? It seems to me that a normal teen, or student may have been affected by the letter at first, but then studies, friends, boyfriends, etc would take over, and they would quickly forget about the article and go on with their life. Here, the opposite is true. Here we have a person that not only doesnt forget the article, but waits until the one month anniversary to mail it, the way that the other writer in the Bates case letters waited for anniversaries to write the letters in her case.

This is way too much of a coincidence in my opinion, and I feel the letter to indeed be suspicious. Anyway, here is the letter. Please list your thoughts and opinions

Nov 1,1967
To the Editor
Your human interest story (Oct 1,1967) about Cheri, the RCC girl
that was killed was very interesting. Perhaps a story about the boy
that killed her could be more rewarding. If people were to read of
the life of a boy that turned killer, they might stop to think about
the lives of their own children. " Are we laying the blue print for
another killer?" might be one of the questions brought to mind by
such a story.

With hope,
Patricia Hautz
Fellow Student


Morf:TheForeigner, who is a great poster and researcher, stated the following over on the other forum:

Here is somthing to think about IMO:

There is the letter sent by a " Patricia Hautz " to Riverside Press-Enterprise Nov 1967, and no envelope is avaible.
Then we have a probable Zodiac envelope (image added at the end of this post) recently found in the Riverside Press-Enterprise archives (By Howard Davis), ALSO, from 1967 with no letter avaible.

On it is stated that the envelope is poststamped April 30, 1967, but IMO it looks like is impossible to read the date, so the question is; was this envelope possibly poststamped in Nov 1967, and is it the envelope that contained the " Patricia Hautz " letter ?:
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif (77.31 KiB) Viewed 3686 times
hautz.gif (69.27 KiB) Viewed 3686 times
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:01 pm

Morf: Bently then posted this blownup closeup of the envelope. That envelope was THOUGHT to have been the Envelope from one of the other Bates letter, but it looks more likely based on the apparent 11/1/67 postmark that the envelope is from the Patricia Hautz letter.

AK - What you see here is:

Top: Postmark from April 30, 1967 envelope that had a "Bates had to die" letter. Note where the month and day appear, here as "APR 30".

Middle: Close up on postmark on questioned envelope. Marked by bently to show possible date and day.

Bottom: Close up on postmark on questioned envelope, no markings.
Postmark on April 30 Bates Had To Die Envelope.jpg
Postmark on April 30 Bates Had To Die Envelope.jpg (16.17 KiB) Viewed 3691 times
Postmark on Questioned Envelope in Bates Case Red Marked.jpg
Postmark on Questioned Envelope in Bates Case Red Marked.jpg (15.15 KiB) Viewed 3681 times
Postmark on Questioned Envelope in Bates Case.jpg
Postmark on Questioned Envelope in Bates Case.jpg (13.31 KiB) Viewed 3682 times
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:14 pm

This is what I have as the November (27-28) 1966 envelope the confession letter came in. It has an odd blocky style, similar to a style later used by Ted Kaczynski.

I added the questioned envelope here.

Both say "ATTN:" then indicate intended party. The "ATTN:" is on the bottom left of the envelope. Both have the "T" 's meet. The handwriting of "Editor" on the questioned envelope matches other Z writing.
Zodiac Block Writing Riverside Confession Envelope.jpg
Zodiac Block Writing Riverside Confession Envelope.jpg (24.1 KiB) Viewed 3676 times
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif (77.31 KiB) Viewed 3691 times
Editor Comps Zodiac Envelopes And Questioned Hautz Envelope.jpg
Editor Comps Zodiac Envelopes And Questioned Hautz Envelope.jpg (18 KiB) Viewed 3672 times
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:23 pm

The "Editor" certainly looks very much like other Z writing. And both the confession envelope and this envelope have the "ATTN:" marker. The cursive writing on this envelope shares a trait with the cursive writing on the card to the sister of Donna Lass - the capital letters are sometimes done seperate and apart from the rest of the word.

Also, look at the other letters sent in April 67, including this one to the Press Enterprise:

Then there is one to Mr. Bates and one to the RPD.

All have two stamps, a man in profile - NOT George Washington. (Could be Lincoln).

Why would the writer use two stamps on all the other letters, and one different stamp on this one?

The April 30 envelopes are all done in a childish sloppy printed scrawl. The questioned envelope is in prissy cursive.

There is nothing about the questioned envelope that would lead one to think it was sent with the other April 30 envelopes.

A poster noted this:

"He [Howard Davis] spoke to a librarian at the Press who told him that the paper had received two Bates letters. Surprisingly they had a kept a copy of the envelope, but not the letter."

AK - OK that may be what the librarian told him. But is it true? They lost the letter but kept the envelope? It COULD be the librarian is telling him what she assumed or what others assumed and told her - this decades old envelope must have had another "Bates had to die letter" in it.

And perhaps that is correct. But then why did this "Fourth Letter" never get turned over to the police? Why did the sender use a child like printed scrawl on three envelopes, and a prissy cursive style on the fourth? Why double stamps on three, and a different single stamp on this one?

"May 1" could be a viable alternative explanation for the postmark issue. But it does seem to look more like a "V", and the two slanted dots seem to basically match the two slanted dots in the Riverside "V".


One thing that struck me - apparently in November of 1966 there were TWO confession letters sent - one to the RPD and one to the "Daily Enterprise". Is that correct?

And in April of 67, we have the letter to Mr. Bates, but again, a letter to RPD and the "Press Enterprise".

The paper had a morning and afternoon edition. But as they were owned by the same company, it seems likely there was one editorial and news department - so no need to send TWO letters to the same paper. In Nov 66 there was ONE letter sent to the paper.

So it seems that in April 67 one letter was sent to the paper. The different postmark, writing, stamp and envelope size all TEND to confirm this. And from what we can see of the month, a probable "V", indicating "NOV", and not "APR".

If we believe otherwise, it means that the Riverside Press - Enterprise got TWO "Bates had to die" letters in April 67 - but only turned ONE over to the police. That doesn't make any sense. All the police and journalist reports indicate THREE April 67 letters - one to the police, one to Mr. Bates and one to the Riverside Press - Enterprise.

Also, the "ATTN:" appears on the Nov 66 envelope to the "Daily Enterprise", and it seems there is an "ATTN:" on the front (or back) of the questioned envelope. Most people just write the person or department name at the top of the address. Some people write "To:", some write "Attention"; to abbreviate as "ATTN:" is a somewhat interesting way to do it, and is a possible tie bewteen these envelopes. And certainly the "Editor" writing has very strong similarities to known Z writing.

Mix ups certainly happen, but it is very hard to explain how and why the paper would turn over one letter to the police in April 67, and lose the other one. And it doesn't seem there was any need for the person to send TWO letters to what was the same paper.
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:37 pm

If we look at this questioned envelope and the envelope to the sister of Lass, both sometimes have the capital letter of a word seperate and apart from the body of the word. This is a trait also exhibited by Ted Kaczynski.

Following on the observation of Bentley that the writer of the questioned envelope had the "i" and "d" in "Riverside" seperate, look at the words "South" (between "u" and "t") and "Dakota" (between "t" and "a") - they also, in the body of the word, have letter seperation.

That strikes me as odd - cursive writing generally is, by its very nature, all connected.

So they share that trait, fwiw. As does Ted Kaczynski.
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif
Riverside Bates Envelope Questioned Origin.gif (77.31 KiB) Viewed 3635 times
1974 Suspected Zodiac Envelope to Sister of Donna Lass.jpg
1974 Suspected Zodiac Envelope to Sister of Donna Lass.jpg (11.34 KiB) Viewed 3653 times
1974 Suspected Zodiac Card to Sister of Donna Lass.jpg
1974 Suspected Zodiac Card to Sister of Donna Lass.jpg (8.26 KiB) Viewed 3652 times
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:49 pm

I thought some of you here might like to read some info from another board, along with some new info as well:

Morf: ""To me, there is no doubt, the writer of these (Bates) letters was tied to Riverside area/southern CA. They were familiar with the local papers down there. They sent multiple letters on multiple dates. Not to say someone from Northern CA couldnt get down there, but I think it is more unlikely to be the case."

AK: IMO it only takes a few days to get an idea what the local papers are. Even in the 60's, you can get from North Cal to South Cal in six hours by car or bus, two hours by plane. Ted Kaczynski went from Montana to SF - a 24 hour trip - just to mail letters to make the FBI think he lived in SF. And it worked. Bundy went from killing in Washington to the Rocky Mountain states to Florida. He killed people in Florida, and had no prior ties to the area. Numerous serial killers killed over multiple states.

AK: If we say the "brush offs over the years" (in the Bates confession letter) was a true statement, it is an incredible slip up by Z, and he didn't make many mistakes. It also means the killer knew Bates - fellow student and/or lived in the area. Yet the local angle was heavily investigated, to no avail. Maybe the killer both made this incredible mistake and was lucky enought to slip through the cracks. To me it just cries out as a false clue, a red herring designed to mislead, though I admit that is based more on my subjective read and gut instincts as much as analysis of the limited evidence. And the poem on the desk - at first glance a poem on a desk brings to mind a student sitting there. Again, either a slip up or a false clue IMO. Morril says Z wrote the poem, so was Z a student? Again, VERY HEAVILY looked into and nothing found. Did he slip through? Maybe. But it also seems more likely to a false clue IMO, a false clue like the "brush offs over the years" designed to make police think the killer was a local boy, a fellow student who knew Bates. In that regard, Morf, as we both know, it was successful, at least in terms of the RPD. For SFPD and Cal DOJ and the FBI, I think they are more inclined to agree with me.

Morf: "Riverside PD feels that the Bates Killer & Bates letter writer are two different and distinct people. Det Shumway said that Zodiac was an oportunist that attacked randomly when he saw a chance, where as Cheri's killer knew her, stalked her, and was someone she knew and trusted enough to walk off with into a darkened alley with. These are his opinions, not mine. But I do think his opinions do make some sense."

AK: Interesting points. But back then I think people were more trusting. The descriptions we have of Z - from the Stine witnesses, Johns and others- are a white male, "normal" looking, looked like "military", "clean cut". With a women with a broken down car needing help, the kind of person likely to gain trust. That is why I don't think it HAS to have been someone she knew. Johns trusted him. Certainly someone - perhaps Z perhaps not - looked trustworthy enought to talk to and "help", then kill, women like Mellin, Graham, the Sonoma victims and many others.


Morf also wrote about the discovery by Ricardo (Gomez) at MK - Zodiac that it appears the Bates article ran on Oct 30, 1967 (which is more logical when you think about it), not Oct 1, 1967, as "Hautz" claimed. Morf wondered if this was an error or a lie.

It could just be the writer - whoever he or (I doubt it) she was - made a simple mistake. They wrote "Nov 1" so perhaps they carelessly wrote "Oct 1" instead of "Oct 30". If they lied and intentionally wrote the wrong date, what was the purpose? A clue of some kind, perhaps to look at the Oct 1, 1967 newspaper?

It does tend to suggest that the writer did not have the newspaper in front of him when he wrote this. It is harder to imagine making a mistake if the article in the paper is right by you when you are typing, though of course it could be a mistake just like I mentioned above.

The RPD Detective dismisses the letters - but Morrill at Cal DOJ said they were done by Zodiac. The FBI analyst gave an "inconclusive" but said there were characterisitcs to suggest all the materials, including Riverside, may have been done by one person. Toschi said the Riverside writings were "obviously" Zodiac, and to my unexpert eye they certainly seem to match. I go with Morril, Toschi and (somewhat inconclusively and weakly) the FBI analyst over the RPD.

The biggest thing to me is that we have three "Bates had to die" letters and three April 30 envelopes. They appear to have been printed by someone with very sloppy childish handwriting, they use two stamps, etc. There would be no reason for the "killer" to send a fourth "Bates" letter to the same newspaper. And it is very difficult to understand why, if the paper got two letters, one was turned over to police and one vanished into the twilight zone. And the writing, stamp, postmark, envelope on the questioned envelope is totally different from all those things on the April 30 enevelopes.

It does start to seem that the bulk of the known evidence suggests that this questioned envelope may well have contained the Hautz letter, and for all the reasons discussed, the writing on this envelope points to probably being Zodiac.

In a way, you could say, "OK, big deal, perhaps Zodiac wrote a fake letter to the paper asking for sympathy and understanding. So what, how does that advance the case?"

It does raise the question of Zodiac being in CA in Nov 67, which also is reinforced by the discovery of Morf that there were "car trouble ruse" attacks in the LA area in Nov 67 with a perfect MO match to the Johns attack. Thus we have two new bits of evidence of Zodiac being in CA, and Southern CA, in November 1967. This is consistent with Ted K starting teaching in Fall of 1967, thus placing him in CA, with LA-Riverside only six hours away by car, less thasn two by air. It does cause me (and perhaps others) to look more closely at other "sock puppet" or "red herring" letters, such as those in the Zodiac case like "Aroused", "Anonymous", "Armchair", "A Citizen", "A Friend" as well as in other possibly linked cases such as in EAR/ONS "Afraid", the Bari case "Argus" and another case "Allen". (Anybody notice anything all those names have in common?)

It is a potentially significant discovery with other implications as well. Kudos again to the Foriegner, Bently and Morf. It would be nice to be able to confirm or disprove it, perhaps by expert analysis of the postmark and writing. BTW, the article by Ricardo (Gomez) at mk-zodiac does a very good job of laying out the facts.
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 12:59 pm

I don't agree that the Bates killer HAS to be local. First, from SF to LA is six hours by car, two hours by air. Second, IMO the killer went out of his way to leave a series of false clues that he was local - the confession letter comment about the "brush offs over the years" (to make it seem he was a local boy who knew Bates), the poem on the desk (to make it seems he was a local student writing on a school desk during class). If my opinion is correct, that tells me he is likely NOT local. He could be local, but if these first level clues are false, as I think they likely are, then he is likely not local IMO.

Bentley said:

"Just a reminder to those who feel the Press envelope in question is from the Hautz letter and is the work of Z: He would have to have been in Riverside to mail it 11/1/67, as well as 4/67, 11/66 and 10/66.

For example, according to the usual net sources, Ted K was hired on as an assistant professor of mathematics at Berkeley in the fall of 1967, hot on the heels of winning mathematician of the year at Univ. of Michigan earlier that year. So in this case we have a newly hired, highly regarded teacher in the middle of his first semester of teaching taking off work and heading down to Riverside to mail a letter smack in the middle of the work week, Wednesday Nov 1, 1967, just for the purposes of getting a Riverside postmark.

Not likely IMO."

First, just to be clear, I have always pursued research on general Z topics - like the Hautz letter, SB 63, etc. - without much regard for whether they help or hurt TK as a suspect, or point more towards an UNSUB. Bently brings out a good point.

What is interesting about this possible new development with the Hautz envelope, is that it may indicate someone who was in CA in the Fall/Winter of 66 (to do the murder and the confession letter), perhaps April 67 (to do the "Bates had to die" letters (though RPD denies these were from the killer) ) and probably November 67 to do the Hautz letter. I have no info on where TK was in April of 67, but his thesis and TA duties were ended by then, and he often never showed up for a single class, only to turn in an award winning paper at the end. But on the basis of a hand written application dated December 66, it appears he was likely in CA in the Fall/Winter of 66 to interview at U Cal Berkeley, and perhaps at other U Cal campuses (which include LA, SB and Riverside). And we know he returns to CA at least by the Fall of 67 to start teaching at Berkeley. I think he only had two classes to teach and didn't give a ---- about the classes or his students. College courses are often once or twice a week. I don't know what days he had off. But we should remember that this a man who - at least half a dozen times - went from Montana to SF just to mail letters, to make the FBI think he was a SF resident. I have no problem at all picturing him driving from SF to Riverside, when he later made drives or trips four times as long.

His brother once said that face to face, TK could often not communicate, and that his primary means of communication were letters. He wrote letters to the editor, to magazines, to newspapers, to government agencies. In his criminal life, he wrote many "sock puppet", "red herring", "false clues" and "false sponsor" letters.

As for Gaikowski, we already know he was in Albany NY for the Fall/Winter of 66, probably in Europe Xmas 68. Anybody know where he was November 67?
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby akwilks on Thu Dec 31, 2009 1:03 pm

Morf indicated that he thought the error of "Hautz" writing "Oct 1, 1967" as the date of the article, instead of the real date of "Oct 30, 1967" might not just be an error, but a lie.

AK: But do you have any informed speculation, or even a flat out guess, as to why the writer lied? A clue of some kind? But meaning what?

The only thing that comes to my mind is that maybe the writer never read the article and/or never had a physical copy of the paper with the article, and instead heard second or third hand that the paper had done on article on Bates, and was told the wrong date or misheard the date.

Morf: AK, I really can't say, I just don't know. If Z was really Patricia Hautz, then we would be trying to get into the mind of an insane individual, so we may not be on the same wavelength as him.

Zodiac seemed to be quick to respond to articles written about him. Perhaps he read the 10/30/67 article, and quickly responded with the Patricia Hautz letter, and fo some unknown reason, wanted people to look back to 10/1/67. Were there any suspicious letters,abductions, or murders on that date? Maybe he wanted people to look for that article and discover some other crime he did?

Maybe there is a LETTER TO THE EDITOR in that paper that he wrote, and wanted to bring attention to it?

AK: Was it Nikki Benedict who died around the time of the April 30, 1967 letters? Maybe you could look at the Oct 1, 1967 paper and see if anything leaps out. An article on her or something. Look at the classifieds too, that is that the one way anyone can get something in the paper. A common spy method that appears in mystery stories. There were a few odd messages in SF papers that COULD have been from the Zodiac, and the classifieds were used in one possibly linked case I have looked at.

It is interesting that we have this Nov 1, 1967 letter postmarked Riverside, and in that same month of November 1967 the car trouble ruse attacks that match the Johns MO start in the LA area.

BTW I found the comments by Ricardo at MK - Zodiac interesting. He notes that "Patrician" means a member of the noble class and it was used in Roman times, and that "Haut" means skin. "Noble Skin"? "Noble Skin Z"? It is just informed speculation but it is interesting.

I would say the fact that we have three "Bates had to die" letters and three April 30 envelopes is one of the most important basic facts here. No reason for the person to send a duplicate letter to the same newspaper, and very hard to think that one letter gets turned over to the police and the other vanishes.

Anyway, kudos again to TF, Bently and Morf.
Posts: 1109
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:06 am

Re: PATRICIA HAUTZ letter in the Cheri Jo Bates case

Postby KITE on Thu Dec 31, 2009 10:37 pm

I believe it be from Zodiac. SKIN Z are 5 of the last letters in Kaczynski. HAUT or HAUTE also means high-class. I wonder with 13 letters in Patricia Hautz, to look for a Caesar shift. Speaking of 13, Z is the 13th letter here in Patricia HautZ and also in Theodore J. KacZynski. There seems to be a sort of back-handed taunt in suggesting that a story about the boy responsible could be rewarding when there can be no story without a conviction. I find the letter strangely worded, perhaps it's laced with yet unseen clues--who can say for sure. FELLOW STUDENT also has 13 letters. And why the WITH HOPE? The use of Blue Print seems strange, perhaps cryptic. Have to take some time to think this one over.
Posts: 718
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2008 5:30 pm
Location: The Bright Light In A Cold Case Night


Return to The Zodiac Case

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest