THE Zodiac Killer led a reign of terror over San Francisco starting in 1968 as he claimed to have killed 37 people in his letters to newspapers and police.
In 2004, the case was deemed inactive but the San Francisco Police Department reopened it in March of 2007.
Who has been suspected of being the Zodiac Killer?
The Zodiac's identity has been shrouded in mystery for nearly 52 years since he launched his killing spree in 1968.
A cipher in one of the letters the killer wrote remained unsolved for five decades until the San Francisco Chronicle cracked it late in 2020.
Eleven months later, a new development was revealed in October 2021 by the Case Breakers, a team of specialists who have investigated some of America's most high-profile crimes.
The Case Breakers crew is comprised of more than 40 former law enforcement investigators, journalists and military intelligence officers, and the man they say is responsible for the string of five murders in 1968 and 1969 is Gary Francis Poste, who died in 2018.
The team said they discovered Poste's identity after years of digging through new forensic evidence and his darkroom.
One image uncovered from the darkroom purportedly featured scars on Poste's forehead which match a sketch of the Zodiac.
The team said the Zodiac's ciphers also point to Poste.
They also claim to have linked Poste to a sixth killing hundreds of miles away that police previously determined was not committed by the Zodiac.
Poste died at age 80 while suffering from a series of maladies including sepsis, septic shock, dysphagia and vascular dementia, according to his death certificate.
Arthur Leigh Allen
One of the most convincing names to emerge was an alleged pedophile named Arthur Leigh Allen.
He had been discharged without honor from the US Navy and was fired as a primary school teacher after allegations of sexual misconduct.
Allen was first interviewed as a suspect in 1969 after he was seen near the scene of one attack.
He came to police attention again in 1971 when his friend told officers he had spoken of his desire to kill people and used the name Zodiac.
San Francisco police searched his home the following year but found no evidence linking him to the murders.
Ross Sullivan emerged as a suspect through a possible link between the Zodiac and the murder of Cheri Jo Bates in Riverside.
He was a library assistant at Riverside City College and coworkers were suspicious when he disappeared for several days after the killing, especially as he resembled sketches of the murderer.
Sullivan had moved to Santa Cruz in 1968 and was hospitalized several times for bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, before dying in 1977 at the age of 36.
Richard Marshall was accused of being the killer by police informants as they claimed he hinted at being the Zodiac.
He lived in Riverside in 1966 and then San Francisco in 1969, close to the murder scenes of Cheri Jo Bates and Paul Stine.
His fingerprints, however, did not match those collected from scenes or letters.
Lawrence Kane was pinpointed as a suspect when Kathleen Johns – who claimed to have been abducted by the killer – picked him out of a photo line up.
Patrol officer Don Fouke, who possibly saw the killer following Stine's murder, said Kane closely resembled the man he encountered.
He also worked at the same hospital in Nevada as Donna Lass – a potential victim of the Zodiac.
Kane was diagnosed with impulse-control disorder after suffering brain injuries in an accident in 1962. He died in 2010.
Newspaper editor Richard Gaikowski has before been named as a possible suspect.
At the time of the murders, he worked for Good Times, a San Francisco counterculture newspaper. Staff at the paper were busiest on Wednesday, the only day the killer didn't send mail, it's reported.
Nancy Slover, the Vallejo police dispatcher who was contacted by the Zodiac shortly after an attack, said his voice matched the killer's.
San Francisco Police Department ruled Gaikowski out as a suspect, however.
Louis Joseph Myers
In 2001, Louis Joseph Myers reportedly confessed to a friend that he was the killer after finding out he was dying from cirrhosis of the liver.
He told his pal Randy Kenney to go to the police following his death, which he did in 2002.
But cops reportedly wouldn't take the claims seriously – despite there being some links.
From 1971 to 1973 no Zodiac letters were received, and during this time Myers was stationed overseas with the military.
According to Kenney, Myers told him he targeted couples following a bad break up with his girlfriend.
A journalistic inquiry on a connection between the Zodiac and Monster of Florence cases named Joseph Bevilacqua as a suspect.
Bevilacqua was born in New Jersey and had a career in the Army for 20 years before moving to Florence.
The author of the inquiry, Francesco Amicone wrote an account of Bevilacqua's reported partial admission to being responsible of the murders attributed to both killers in an unregistered conversation in 2017.
But after the release of the first part of the inquiry, Bevilacqua denied his admission and threatened Amicone with a lawsuit.
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