Unsolved Mysteries in the 90’s and the internet in the naughties somewhat reignited- or at least, kept alive- interest in the mysterious plane hijacking carried off by one DB Cooper.
As to the events of the hijacking, the Telegraph sums them up thusly:
On the plane, he donned a pair of dark sunglasses, ordered a whiskey, lit up a cigarette and coolly handed the stewardess a note. In capital letters, it read: I HAVE A BOMB IN MY BRIEFCASE. I WILL USE IT IF NECESSARY. I WANT YOU TO SIT NEXT TO ME. YOU ARE BEING HIJACKED.
Cooper successfully commandeered the plane, successfully obtained $200,000 at a stop in Seattle, and successfully escaped the flight somewhere over Washington state. Despite four decades of sleuthing in the case by amateurs and pros alike, no trace of the man himself is ever known to have been found by law enforcement. (Or if they had their suspicions, they weren’t saying.) A child in 1980 came across some money from the hijacking- six grand in nearly destroyed bills- and Cooper’s tie was also located… but otherwise, poof.
The DB Cooper hijacking is fairly high profile as an unsolved crime, but the Telegraph piece cited above quotes one Ayn Dietrich, a retired analyst with the FBI tasked with cataloguing new information about the DB Cooper hijacking. And Dietrich takes the interviewer completely by surprise when she says there is an extremely promising new lead in the case:
“You’re the first to know this, but we do actually have a new suspect we’re looking at. And it comes from a credible lead who came to our attention recently via a law enforcement colleague.” I’m stunned. Dietrich says she can’t tell me much more, but like all the Cooper sleuths I’ve met over the past few days, I too have become a little obsessed with the case.
“The credible lead is somebody whose possible connection to the hijacker is strong,” she says. “And the suspect is not a name that’s come up before.” Dietrich says agents have sent an item that belongs to him for testing at the forensics lab in Quantico, Virginia. “We’re hoping there are fingerprints they can take off of it,” she says. “It would be a significant lead. And this is looking like our most promising one to date.”
Alas, Dietrich hints, the suspect is likely already deceased- which kind of makes the possibility of new information less appealing, since he can’t be interviewed. Do you follow new developments in the DB Cooper case? Would you prefer to see it solved, or for the legendary hijacking to remain a mystery?