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California Woman Claims Her Father, Guy Ward Hendrickson, Was Zodiac Killer; Skepticism Follows

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By Javier Lavagnino, Esq. on April 30, 2009 10:28 AM

A California woman claims that her father, one Guy Ward Hendrickson, was the Zodiac killer, reports the San Francisco Examiner. Yes, if 47-year-old real estate agent Deborah Perez's claims turn out to be true, one of history's most notorious and apparently elusive serial killers, would turn out to be a former carpenter from Southern California.

Unfortunately, going directly to the source on this claim won't be possible, considering that Guy Ward Hendrickson died in 1983. Also, up front, it should be noted that Perez is currently taking part in a documentary about the killings, so perhaps a big (huge?) grain of salt is called for here.

However, Perez did go so far as to say she was at the scene of one of the Zodiac killings and wrote some of the notes that the infamous killer sent to police and media. She explained, "I was a child and just thought I was helping my dad." Perhaps keeping quiet about it for decades might also have turned out to be pretty helpful to her dad? Well, she explains she didn't even know about the Zodiac killer "until she saw a composite drawing on America's Most Wanted several years ago and, after looking at letters online, determined it was her father. Hendrickson had confessed to his daughter that he had killed people, but never said he was the Zodiac Killer".

It all makes sense now right? She kept quiet because she thought they were just regular, uh, non-Zodiac killings ... At any rate, Perez does claim to have some arguably hard evidence, specifically "[t]he glasses worn by slain San Francisco cab driver Paul Stine, which she said her father took from the crime scene, [and] are still in her possession". Forensic testing to match the DNA and/or the prescription on the glasses may come about in the future, as well as testing of stamps and envelopes on Zodiac letters Perez says she sealed.

Needless to say, plenty of skeptics abound, particularly considering the regularity with which new claims regarding the Zodiac killer's identity arise in the Bay Area. The N.Y. Times noted that police, for their part, simply said, "We'll listen," per police spokeswoman Sgt. Lynn Tomioka, "Just like everybody else."

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