After 51 years sitting comfortably in the cold case pile, investigators think they may have cracked one of the most notorious serial killer cases of all time.
The Zodiac Killer is the nickname for what has been an unidentified serial killer that unleashed terror in Northern California during the late 1960s. The killer sent chilling and taunting letters or cards to regional newspapers. Many of these contained cryptograms or ciphers that left news outlets and police stumped.
He created four ciphers, many of which left a mystery. Now, investigators solved one that has led to the Zodiac Killer’s true identity. Gary Francis Poste is now the alleged identity of the Northern California serial killer that killed at least five people in the San Francisco Bay Area between 1960 and 1969.
Investigation of the Zodiac Killer
The Zodiac Killer has inspired countless books, movies, podcasts, and anything in between. It has long been perhaps one of the most eery and frustrating cold cases of all time.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, investigators cracked what is known as the 340 Cipher back in March. A team from the United States, Australia, and Belgium came together to solve the mystery.
This cipher went to The Chronicle in November 1969 and remained unsolved for decades. There was no name in this message, however.
Identity of Zodiac Killer Possibly Determined
Now, according to Fox News, a team of 40 detectives, journalists, and military intelligence officers known as The Case Breakers may have gotten to the bottom of it all. Gary Francis Poste is the alleged killer, but he passed away in 2018.
The investigative team supposedly found forensic evidence and photos located in the man’s darkroom. One of these includes an image of Poste with a scar on his forehead. Sketches of the Zodiac Killer have this same scar.
The team also deciphered other clues he sent out during his crime sweep. One message when you remove the letters of his full name, reveals an alternate message.
“So you’ve got to know Gary’s full name in order to decipher these anagrams. I just don’t think there’s any other way anybody would have figured it out,” Jen Bucholtz, a former Army counterintelligence agent who works on cold cases, said to the news outlet.
The investigation is ongoing, but the team is confident they have identified the killer.