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Look back at why JonBenet's parents were never criminally charged

It has already been more than a decade since the world watched the high-profile Colorado murder case of little beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey. The crime of violence brought into question the world of child pageants. "Why would parents want their little girl all dolled up? Is putting a child into pageants asking for pedophiles to notice her?"

The still unsolved case of JonBenet's death is a story that continues to upset many in the public. No one was ever convicted of the 6-year-old's murder -- even though the jury of the public had found the child's parents guilty in their minds right from the beginning. The Daily Camera looks at a detail of the case that some might not know.

For a person or people to be charged with a crime, a grand jury, not just the district attorney, is involved. The grand jury will look at the evidence presented to them and conclude whether it feels suspects should be criminally charged. A district attorney then makes the final call on moving forward with the charges.

A grand jury is not the same as a jury that hears the trial once charges are filed. It doesn't decide whether a defendant is guilty of a crime; it decides whether there is sufficient reason to move forward with criminal charges at all. A noteworthy occurrence within the JonBenet Ramsey case process is that the grand jury wanted to charge John and Patsy Ramsey with the crime of child abuse resulting in death.

If you remember how the case went, however, you'd recall that the Ramseys were not charged. In what some call a "courageous" and others call a "wrong" move, the district attorney decided not to pursue the case against them. An upcoming post will continue this discussion and give further details behind the DA's decision.

Source: The Daily Camera, "JonBenet Ramsey grand jury voted to indict parents in 1999, but DA refused to prosecute," Charlie Brennan, Jan. 27, 2013

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