Is there such thing as the perfect crime? Based on the startling accounts of horrifying crimes that have left authorities baffled, it seems possible. Crime is an unfortunate reality in every society - much crime goes largely unreported, while a small minority of shocking crimes hit headlines the world over on a weekly basis. When there a heinous crime grabs the attention of the media and fails to be solved, it tends to become sensationalised and conspiracy theories abound. There are many likely reasons for our fascination with unsolved crimes; one of them is fear, especially in a case of, for example, a relentless serial killer who's still at large.
There are unsolved crimes which date back as far as centuries ago, having left police, detectives and criminologists bewildered - and the mystery is certainly intriguing. Crimes that have been solved are generally consigned the the pages of history and left well enough alone; they rarely gain the notoriety of the enigmatic, unsolved crimes.
While objective onlookers certainly find all this interesting, the families and friends and sometimes surviving victims of these unsolved crimes are left living a life of uncertainty, having failed to achieve justice or closure. Unsolved crimes could mean lifetimes wasted trying to solve them, careers tainted - or worse, innocent people being accused and wrongfully imprisoned in a reckless rush to tie up the loose ends and appease the media.
Here, we're recounting stories of ten of the most mysterious crimes to remain unsolved. For many of these crimes there have been extensive investigations, documentary films, even novel written novels about the incidents. With such a wealth of information and speculation, we can but scratch the surface of these profound mysteries. With these 10 introductions to ten big mysteries, perhaps this article will inspire budding investigators to do some digging...
10 The Chicago Tylenol Poisonings
In the fall of 1982, seven people in Chicago died after taking Tylenol that was laced with cyanide. A 12-year old girl who complained of a cold and was given Tylenol by her parents became one of the first victims. Another victim, Adam Janus, died after taking the pill for his chest pains, and while his younger brother and sister-in-law grieved, they took some of Adam’s Tylenol and also died. Needless to say, the city of Chicago was in a panicked frenzy and police pulled the product from the shelves. This particular incident inspired fear, copycat crimes and hoaxes - yet, incredibly, pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson successfully bounced back from the consequent huge drop in their market share due to their honesty with the public and their cooperation with the FBI and the FDA.
Culprits behind the Tylenol poisonings have never been identified, but investigation are ongoing with advances in technology making a break in the case look slightly more likely. Between 2009 and 2011, the house of a James Lewis was searched in relation to the investigation, and Theodore John "Ted" Kaczynski - a mathematical genius, Harvard graduate and serial killer who's known for opposing industrialism - is also under investigation. It was this horrifying incident that led the the creation of those tamper-proof caps we find on so many medications, foods and drinks.
9 JonBenét Ramsey
8 Gardner Museum
7 Tupac and Notorious B.I.G.
6 D.B. Cooper
5 The Monster With 21 Faces
In the 1980’s, a group called “The Monster With 21 Faces” (called “Monster” from here on out) terrorized local Japanese food giant, Ezaki Glico. First, two armed men broke into his house and kidnapped the company's president. They held him in a warehouse and called the company demanding a ransom of 100 million Yen and 100 kilos of gold bullion. Luckily, Glico escaped, but did so before being able to identify his kidnappers. “Monster” wasn’t done yet though. The company parking lot was set on fire a few weeks later, and then the letters began to appear. One of the letters stated that “Monster” poisoned Ezaki Glico’s candies, causing the company to lose $21 million and compelling them to fire 450 part time workers after pulling their products from the shelves. “Monster” eventually moved on from Glico and continued to terrorize corporate giants for years to come, all without getting caught.