THE MOST DANGEROUS TIME OF YEAR?
WOMAN'S OWN|November 09, 2021
December sees a spike in crime – the kind of crime that can destroy lives. Woman’s Own investigates
MISHAAL KHAN
While most of us look forward to the festive period, counting down the days until Christmas, it’s not always the most wonderful time of the year. During December, crime rates rise, with an increase in the number of burglaries, as well as incidents of stalking, harassment and domestic violence. We take a look back at some of the crimes that have dominated the headlines over the years.

Taken too soon

JonBenét Ramsey was the little girl who captured the hearts of millions, but on 26 December 1996 the six-year-old pageant princess was found brutally murdered at her family home in Boulder, Colorado.

Controversy and confusion surrounded her death. It became international news – and one of the most publicised police cases of the 1990s.

The last time JonBenét’s parents, Patsy and John, say they saw their daughter alive was Christmas night 1996, when she headed to bed. Her brother Burke, then nine, was also at home. At 5.30am on Boxing Day, Patsy got up to make coffee and reportedly found a ransom note on a back staircase of the house, demanding $118,000 for her little girl’s safe return.

Police searched the house, but there was no sign of a break-in, and it wasn’t for another eight hours when John searched the house himself that he found his daughter’s body in the basement. Her skull was broken, caused by a blow to the head, and she had been strangled. She lay under a white blanket, with her wrists tied up over her head and her mouth covered in duct tape.

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