Some believe the message contains a hidden clue which may bring us closer to solving the case than ever before.
Dubbed the "340 cipher," the message was unraveled by a trio of code breakers -- David Oranchak, a software developer in Virginia, Jarl Van Eycke, a Belgian computer programmer, and Sam Blake, an Australian mathematician.
In the late 1960’s, and early 1970’s, an enigmatic serial killer terrorized the San Francisco Bay area of Northern California, and teased the police tasked with stopping him. Through bold letters and cryptic ciphers mailed to local newspapers as well as taunting calls to police, the Zodiac left his mark on the state of California and true crime history. Authors and hosts of the Criminology podcast, Mike Morford and Mike Ferguson, covered the case extensively in their book, THE CASE OF THE ZODIAC KILLER.
The Zodiac Killer's '340 Cipher', which was mailed to the San Francisco Chronicle more than 51 years ago, has finally been cracked. Over the years many individuals have tried unsuccessfully to decipher the strange symbols of the '340 Cipher', including private citizens, local and state law enforcement, and even the FBI. But it was an international team of amateur code breakers who finally revealed the cryptic message.
Here's what the Zodiac wrote all those years ago:
I hope you are having lots of fun in trying to catch me
That wasn't me on the TV show which brings up a point about me
I am not afraid of the gas chamber because it will send me to paradice* all the sooner
Because I now have enough slaves to work for me where everyone else has nothing when they reach paradice* so they are afraid of death
I am not afraid because I know that my new life will be an easy one in paradice* death.
*One of the first things many people notice is that The Zodiac spelled "paradise" incorrectly in the cipher. Some think it was simply a misspelling, while many amatuer Internet sleuths believe this is a clue to the identity of the killer. Those who believe it is a clue state that someone who developed a code that took more than 50 years to crack would likely know the correct spelling of the word paradise.
It was widely speculated that the cipher would reveal the identity of the killer, but the Zodiac's true identity still remains a mystery. We, at WildBlue Press, hope this brings law enforcement one step closer to identifying the Zodiac Killer and providing closure for family and friends of the victims.
Learn more about THE CASE OF THE ZODIAC KILLER in the Criminology Podcast Season One book, with additional commentary, photographs, and documents!