Monday, May 21, 2018

An Old Mystery Solved?

But first, the Ballad of DB Cooper, a more or less accurate account of the events of 1971 put to music.

Hey, I didn't say it was necessarily good music...
FBI sketches of "D.B. Cooper"

More than 45 years after a mysterious plane hijacker made off with $200,000 in ransom money, disappearing into the night sky, a publishing company believes it has finally identified the man who eluded authorities for so long.

At a news conference on Thursday, Michigan publisher Principia Media said the hijacker, known as D.B. Cooper, was former military paratrooper and intelligence operative Walter R. Reca. The company said it worked with Reca's best friend, Carl Laurin, in compiling the evidence.

While the publisher did not disclose whether Reca was still alive, an obituary online lists a man with the identical name who lived in Oscada, Mich., as having died in 2014 at the age of 80.

"Evidence, including almost-daily discussions over a 14-year period and 3+ hours of audio recordings featuring the skyjacker, was compiled by Reca’s best friend. It was then analyzed by a Certified Fraud Examiner and forensic linguist," the publisher said in a news release. "The audio recordings, created in 2008, include Reca discussing skyjacking details that were not known to the public prior to the FBI’s information release in 2015."

The publishing company worked with Laurin for the memoir "D.B. Cooper & Me: A Criminal, A Spy, My Best Friend.”

Vern Jones, CEO of Principia, talked about recordings that Laurin claimed were actual recordings of Reca speaking about the heist. Jones, a self-proclaimed skeptic at the start of the investigation, said that the evidence was “overwhelming.”
Walter R. Reca

Jones also seemed to hint that the discrepancies between Principia’s investigation and the FBI’s investigation might not have been accidental. “The hijacking,” he said “was just the beginning of the story.”

A group of cold case detectives in the Pacific Northwest have allegedly discovered D.B. Cooper's parachute strap and possible location of the missing money.

He detailed a supposed meeting between Reca and “two men in hard hats” two months after the heist where he was asked by these two unknown men if he was prepared to go to “prison.” Reca was reportedly hired by them, though it is unclear if the two men Jones talked about were FBI agents.

Laurin himself spoke at the press conference and described Reca as a daredevil “who always wanted to be in the CIA.”

“I always got the feeling that when he jumped with our team, the Michigan parachute team, it was a means of survival, not really for the thrill,” Laurin said. “He was looking for something far beyond that.”

After the skyjacking, Reca later became a high-level covert intelligence operative, according to the publishing company.
A criminal joining the CIA? Brennan wasn't Director back then was he? I lived in the Pacific Northwest back in 1971, and D. B. Cooper was almost a folk hero. I'm going to keep my skepticism on this one.

Wombat-socho has "Rule 5 Sunday: Eponymous Shorts" up and at 'em at The Other McCain.

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