Taking a shot at it... What if...the neck injuries occurred first? What if you get so angry at your child, you're exhausted, you just want to sleep, and she just won't go to bed? I know from my own experience that when my children are overly exhausted, overly stimulated by the holidays, excited about a trip or vacation, etc, that they do not sleep well at all. So the Ramsey's are exhausted also. And they have a quick trip the next day, more holiday hustle and bustle with John's kids, quick trip home again, pick up their bags, then it's off on a Disney cruise. That's a lot going on, in addition to the normal holiday preparation and celebration, hosting a party, etc. So Christmas Day is over and they just want to SLEEP. But the kids are wired. They want to play. They want attention. Burke finally goes to bed, but JonBenet can't settle down. She's too young to understand that Mom and Dad need to sleep. She keeps coming in to their room, tells them she's hungry, whatever. Patsy is getting angry and takes JB downstairs, gives her some pineapple, all the while harping on her to go to bed already! But JB comes in again, perhaps just as Patsy is dozing off, telling her that she's wet her pants. Now, those of you with small children can relate to being soooo tired that suddenly your children, whom you love dearly more than anything, can become the enemy, especially when they are depriving you of sleep. When my twins were babies, I was convinced that sleep deprivation should be a form of torture (and have since found out it actually is!) because it took me to a level where I did not recognize myself. I. Just. Wanted. To. Sleep. Thankfully I never hurt my children during this time, but I have to admit I could see how extreme and extended sleep deprivation could make a sane person act insane. So what if Patsy had reached that level? She just wanted to sleep. She had so much to do, so much to think about. So many people to pack for and buy for and cook for, so many things to plan. She'd made it through Christmas Day and now she just wanted to sleep. Maybe she even fell asleep on her bed, fully clothed. Maybe she hadn't even made it to bed yet, but wanted nothing more than to drift off to sleep. So like I said, JB wakes her mother up *again* or wanders out of her room *again* and Patsy just loses it. Grabs JB by the neckline of the shirt she was wearing and twists as hard as she can--out of sheer anger--not intentionally trying to hurt her. Why won't you let me sleep?? she hisses. She shakes JB and JB tries to pull away and whacks her head hard. Patsy realizes that JB has hit her head hard and knows she should seek medical attention, but how does she explain the marks on JB's neck from her shirt? This would not look good--the charges of child abuse flash through her mind quickly. She wakes John up and tells him what has happened. They try to keep JB awake, fearing a concussion; never let the person go to sleep lest they fall into a coma. They walk her, they change her, they wash her off, maybe bathe her? Maybe it's at this point they feed her the pineapple--it's soft and sweet and they need to keep her awake. The marks on her neck are getting worse. They think how can they call 911 or take her to the ER? Child abuse charges would not look good for Patsy's social standing nor John's future political ambitions. After a while, it's no use. JonBenet dies, maybe even in her mother's arms. Patsy cries, of course. So does John. They are truly devestated. They are in shock. What on earth can they do? They know they shouldn't have waited to get JB help for her head injury. But there's nothing they can do now. Here is where they must choose which route to take. Do they call 911 and explain the whole thing? Patsy is terrified--she KNOWS she will be arrested for child abuse, endangerment, neglect, probably manslaughter or possible first degree murder since she did nothing to save JB's life. John is terrified as well--what is going to happen to his family? What is going to happen to Burke with his mother possibly in jail? How is this going to look to all their friends? Of course, they do not call 911 at that point. They choose the "safest" routeand decide to blame it on someone else. Well, obviously they cant leave JB in her bed, where they last saw her. Someone had to have taken her, preferably out of the house entirely. So they take her to the basementfor now. Just in case Burke wakes up. Now, the next thing to do is hide the marks made by her shirt. How? Simplemake new marks. Johns mind is in disaster recovery mode. Hes not thinking straighthow can he be? But hes barking out orders to Patsy, who has shut down and is in shock, but she follows the orders. She has no choiceshe will lose her husband and son and friends if she doesnt do this, so she does it. She fashions a garrote around JBs neck. Perhaps Johns read about this type of thing. As its being done, they are thinking ahead--why would someone do this to a little girl? Ah, pedophile. Sex pervert. Whatever. This person has to be extremely evil to do something like this. Make it look evil. Afterward, Patsy completely breaks down. She holds her daughter, she prays over her, she sobs her apologies and finally says her good-byes. Now, they must write a ransom note. It cant be too simple, and it must point outside of the home. John dictates as Patsy writes. Next, John must get JB out of the house. Daybreak is near, and he must get back in time to wake up at 5:30. He goes upstairs and looks out the window, but perhaps sees someone awake. Perhaps there are lights on across the street; people are awake and might notice his car leaving. It was a weekday, perhaps people were already getting ready for work. Hes afraid he will be noticed. Hes trappedthere is NO way to get her body out of the house. He lays her in the wine cellar and goes upstairs to shower. Patsy, meanwhile, is carefully applying her make-upshe has been crying very hard and her eyes are swollen. At the appropriate time (and they talk quietly about this) they decide to start the show. And the rest is history. Literally.