Will be premiering Zodiac buttons this Sunday at the San Francisco Zine Fest! ☠️ The Zodiac serial killer threatened San Francisco Chronicle reporter Paul Avery with a Halloween card in October 1970. "From your secret pal," taunted the dancing skeleton on the front of the spooky card that the cryptic killer addressed to Avery - misspelling Avery as "Averly." Inside the card, Zodiac printed neatly in felt-tip marker: "Peek-a-boo! You are doomed!” "I Am Not Avery” buttons started popping up all over town. By that time, police had already linked Zodiac to at least five random, brutal murders, dating back two years. He challenged police to catch him in boastful letters to The Chronicle and other Northern California newspapers, enclosing elaborate cryptograms and even scraps of one victim's bloody shirt as proof of his deeds. Zodiac also sent letters commanding the people of “San Fran Bay Area” to wear “Zodiac symbol" buttons even growing angry in another letter: “This is the Zodiac speaking… I have become very upset with the people of San Fran Bay Area. They have NOT complied with my wishes for them to wear some nice (Zodiac symbol) buttons.” He promises to punish them if they do not comply with his wishes.
The Bates Letters: On the 6th month anniversary of his daughter’s death, Joseph Bates received a letter in the mail. His daughter, Cheri Jo Bates of Riverside, CA, had been murdered the day before Halloween in 1966. An autopsy on Bates' body revealed that she put up a good fight as she struggled with her killer. A janitor at Riverside City College Library found her body the following morning. Bates had been stabbed numerous times in the lungs, arms, throat, and face. Two more letters had also been mailed out - one to the Riverside P.D. and the other to the Riverside Press. The crime remains unsolved, but San Francisco Chronicle reporter Paul Avery uncovered clues linking Cheri Jo Bates murder to the Zodiac serial killer - including these three letters and a poem carved into a desktop at Riverside City College.