Zodiac Killer

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Zodiac Killer
Number of victims5 confirmed dead, 2 injured, possibly 20–28 total dead (claimed to have killed 37)
Span of killings1960s–1970s
CountryUnited States
State(s)California, possibly also Nevada

The Zodiac Killer or Zodiac was a serial killer who operated in Northern California from at least the late 1960s to the early 1970s. The killer's identity remains unknown. The Zodiac murdered victims in Benicia, Vallejo, Lake Berryessa, and San Francisco between December 1968 and October 1969. Four men and three women between the ages of 16 and 29 were targeted. The killer originated the name "Zodiac" in a series of taunting letters sent to the local Bay Area press. These letters included four cryptograms (or ciphers). Of the four cryptograms sent, only one has been definitively solved.[1]

Suspects have been named by law enforcement and amateur investigators, mainly led by Dave Toschi, but no conclusive evidence has surfaced. The San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) marked the case "inactive" in April 2004, but re-opened it at some point prior to March 2007.[2][3] The case also remains open in the city of Vallejo, as well as in Napa County and Solano County.[4] The California Department of Justice has maintained an open case file on the Zodiac murders since 1969.[5]

Victims[change | change source]

Confirmed[change | change source]

Although the Zodiac claimed 37 murders in letters to the newspapers, investigators agree on only seven confirmed victims, two of whom survived. They are:

Symbol used by the Zodiac Killer to sign his correspondence.

Suspected[change | change source]

The following murder victims are suspected to be victims of Zodiac, though none have been confirmed:

There is also a suspected third escapee from the Zodiac Killer:

References[change | change source]

  1. "Zodiac Letters". Zodiackiller.com. Archived from the original on June 27, 2017. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
  2. SFPD News Release, March 2007
  3. "Zodiac: The killer who will not die". sanfranmag. Archived from the original on August 24, 2011.
  4. Napa PD Website, Vallejo PD Website and "Tipline," Solano County Sheriff's Office
  5. California Department of Justice Website
  6. Graysmith, p. 160.
  7. Adams, p. 274
  8. "Police report". zodiackiller. Zodiackiller.com. Retrieved May 30, 2010.

Primary sources[change | change source]

FBI Files: