Everyone loves mysteries. It's all about connecting dots until you find the answer. But, what if some pieces are unable to be found and you can't crack the answer no matter how hard you try? It's the one that got away-in a literal way. Some mysteries are meant to be mysteries, even though the people involved deserve justice and answers. So, sit back, relax, because it's gonna be a long read.
D.B. Cooper Airplane Hijack/ Foto: Wikipedia
D.B. Cooper Airplane Hijack
On Thanksgiving eve of 1971, a middle-aged man under the name "Dan Cooper" bought a ticket at Portland International Airport for a Northwest Orient flight to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Shortly after the plane had taken off, Cooper handed a note to one of the flight attendants who sat near him in a jump seat attached to the aft stair door. The flight attendant, Florence Schaffner, assumed the note contained Cooper's phone number in an attempt to flirt with her, thus she dropped it unopened into her purse. Then, Cooper leaned toward her and whispered, "Miss, you'd better look at that note. I have a bomb."
The note was printed in neat, all-capital letters that instructed Schaffner to sit beside him and it also stated that he carried a bomb. Schaffner obliged and quietly asked to see the bomb. Cooper opened his briefcase and there were eight red cylinders in two rows of four, assumed to be dynamite. After he closed the briefcase, he stated his demands which were USD 200,000 in "negotiable American currency", four parachutes, and a fuel truck standing by in Seattle to refuel the aircraft upon arrival.
Barang bukti/ Foto: Wikipedia
After the plane successfully landed in Seattle and the authorities were able to provide the money and parachutes, Cooper released the 36 passengers. However, he forced two pilots, a flight engineer, and a flight attendant to remain on the plane. Shortly after the plane was refueled, he ordered the pilots to fly to Mexico City. Around 8:00 PM, when the plane flew above Seattle and Reno, Nevada, Cooper lowered the rear steps, jumped along with the ransom money, and was never seen again.
Many people, including the FBI, believed that Cooper didn't survive the jump for several reasons: the rain and dangerous conditions for skydiving on the night of the hijacking; the lack of proper equipment; the landing area being a wilderness; the apparent lack of detailed knowledge Cooper had of his landing area; and the rest of the ransom money never turning up even after decades suggested that it was never spent. The FBI maintained an active investigation for 45 years after the hijacking but they officially suspended active investigation of the case in July 2016. The D.B. Cooper case remains the only unsolved case of air piracy in commercial aviation history.
Zodiac Killer/ Foto: Wikipedia
The Zodiac originated the name himself in a series of taunting letters and cards that he mailed to the regional newspapers in Northern California in the late 1960s, threatening killing sprees and bombings if they were not printed by the news outlet. Some of the letters included cryptograms or ciphers, in which the Zodiac claimed that he was collecting his victims as slaves for the afterlife. The murders were the subject of intense investigation and media coverage, mainly due to the killer's taunting letters to newspapers and phone calls to police. All of his letters were signed with a symbol resembling the crosshairs of a gunsight and typically began with the phrase, "this is the Zodiac speaking."
One of the letters known as the 408 cipher was successfully decoded in 1969, which stated, "I like killing people because it is so much fun." Zodiac also included details about the murders that had not yet been released to the public, as well as a message to the police that when they cracked his code, "they will have me." And another one decoded in 2020, the 340 cipher, "I hope you are having lots of fun trying to catch me." Of the four ciphers he produced, two remain unsolved.
Petunjuk Zodiac Killer/ Foto: Wikipedia
The serial killer once claimed to have murdered 37 people back in the late 1960s. However, only seven victims have been officially confirmed. The last known victim was a taxi driver who was shot in October 1969. But, Zodiac maintained communication with authorities for the rest of 1970 via letters and greeting cards to the press. In a letter postmarked April 20th, 1970, he wrote, "My name is _____," followed by a 13-character cipher that hasn't been solved up to this day. The Zodiac Killer case has been described as the most famous unsolved murder case in American history.
Black Dahlia/ Foto: Wikipedia
The Black Dahlia
Not only the Zodiac, but the case of The Black Dahlia is also frequently cited as one of the most famous unsolved murders in American history. Apart from its popularity, it is also one of the oldest unsolved cases in Los Angeles County. On the morning of January 15th, 1947, a local resident discovered a body on a vacant lot and thought it was a discarded store mannequin. When she realized it was a corpse, she rushed to a nearby house and made a call to the police. The body belongs to an aspiring artist, Elizabeth Short, who acquired the nickname of the Black Dahlia posthumously as newspapers of the period often nicknamed particularly lurid crimes-the term may have originated from a film noir murder mystery released in 1946, The Blue Dahlia.
Despite the extensive mutilation and cuts on the body, there wasn't a drop of blood at the scene, indicating that Short had been killed elsewhere. Medical examiners speculated that she had been dead for around ten hours prior to the discovery, with her body having also been washed by the killer. What makes The Black Dahlia gain its attention is because of the gruesome nature of the crime. Her naked body was lying on the ground and severely mutilated into two pieces, her face had been slashed from the corners of her mouth to her ears, and she also had several cuts on her thigh and breasts with the entire portions of her flesh being sliced away. Not only that, her intestines had been tucked neatly beneath her buttocks. No wonder why the person who found her thought it was a mannequin because the killer had arranged the positioning of her body; her hands over her head, her elbows bent at right angles, and her legs spread apart.
The cause of the death was determined to be hemorrhaging from the shock blows to the head and face. A cement sack containing watery blood and a heel print on the ground amid the tire tracks were located nearby the body. An extensive investigation had been made by the police that generated over 150 suspects, yet no one has been framed for the horrifying murder of The Black Dahlia.