Ramseys Settle Book Libel Suit

Former Boulder Detective Settles Case Out Of Court

An ex-detective who wrote a book accusing John and Patsy Ramsey of killing their daughter will pay the couple an undisclosed sum to settle their $80 million libel lawsuit.

Former police Detective Steve Thomas, co-author Don Davis and publisher St. Martin's Press are participating in the settlement, Ramsey attorney L. Lin Wood said Tuesday. He would not say how the three will divide the payment.

The Ramseys filed the civil libel and defamation lawsuit in March 2001, accusing Thomas of making false accusations in the book "JonBenet: Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation" and in television interviews promoting it.

The lawsuit accused Thomas of securing a six-figure book contract with the promise he would say Patsy Ramsey killed 6-year-old JonBenet, and John Ramsey covered up the crime.

Thomas had theorized that Patsy Ramsey murdered the child beauty queen and then tried to make it look like a botched kidnapping.

"They sued this case as a matter of principle," Wood said. "A man wrote a book accusing Patsy of murder, and John of covering it up, and profited off a child's death. And win, lose or draw, they were not going to tolerate it."

Thomas' attorneys, Daniel Petrocelli and Chuck Diamond of Los Angeles, did not return calls seeking comment.

JonBenet was found beaten and strangled in her family's home Dec. 26, 1996. No one has been charged in her death.

Four defamation cases related to JonBenet's death are still pending.

Previous Stories: