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Cooper Podcast

I got my name butchered in a podcast:

In 1971, D. B. Cooper hijacked a plane and made off with $200,000 worth of random money. He was never seen again. In today’s episode Jack and J. J. dissect all the details of the case.…

Source: Ep. 42: D. B. Cooper

It’s a fun podcast, they deliver some criticism of my (and Tom Kaye’s) work on the tie. I admit, we’re shooting from the hip on quantifying this stuff. The reason I feel the need to try to connect Cooper to the tie probabilistically is because everything, every piece of evidence in this case, is challenged. Many of the researchers on the Cooper Forum suggest the tie wasn’t Cooper’s. I think is a very wrong assumption. Common sense suggests the tie belonged to Cooper, trying to connect it to him the way I did in my Math Tie post may have been a futile endeavor.

The two ladies also ridicule my attempt to infer future criminality, or the lack thereof, from someone’s reading habits (cf: Dick Lepsy). I still have a hard time believing Lepsy went from philosophy-reading grocery store manager and family man into a plane hijacker, but I’m adjusting my profile of Lepsy in the response to the criticism.

Definitely give the podcast a listen.


5 Responses

  1. Interesting podcast, but their voices were extremely annoying. They’re probably intelligent adult women but sound likely giggly 14-year-olds.
    But anyway, they seemed to make a pretty good case for Barbara Dayton, but didn’t mention the height issue. as I understand it she was notably shorter than Cooper.


    • Barb Dayton was definitely an interesting person, and the Forman book on her is good reading. But she was not Dan Cooper.

  2. One candidate who may be worth a look is James MacDonald, a Canadian (“negotiable American currency”) civil engineer and private pilot. On December 7, 1971, which to be sure is shortly after Norjack, his aircraft disappeared over a very remote part of northern Manitoba as he was returning from a business trip. Extensive searches were unsuccessful.

    Family members and other people who knew MacDonald said that he closely resembled the Cooper sketches. It’s also possible that his disappearance was staged (to run off with the Norjack loot?) because no one was certain why he went on his last business flight. Another minor point is that MacDonald was wearing a suit jacket when flying, so like Cooper he was used to wearing suits.

    There doesn’t seem to be any information on MacDonald’s whereabouts during Norjack. It would not have been odd for him have said he was going off on a business flight rather than having Thanksgiving dinner with his family, because it isn’t a holiday in Canada.


    • I looked at MacDonald, but I didn’t do a write-up. I guess it’s a possibility. I’ll take a look again, and maybe I will do a post on it.

  3. Lepsy allegedly stole money from his employer and used an aircraft for his escape, giving him a history of doing such activities. There are very few suspects who have money theft in their background. Lepsy was well read, but it didn’t stop him from absconding to Mexico with someone else’s cash. Just something to think about.

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