This book is truly awful. It is rife with factual errors, misleading statements and convoluted prose. Lyndon Lafferty is a retired CA CHP Officer, so you would think he would take the time and effort to fact check his work. Instead, the book is full of mistakes regarding the facts of the Zodiac case. Lafferty expresses disdain for Robert Graysmith, but apparently used Graysmith's first Zodiac book as reference material, since most of the mistakes Lafferty makes are the same ones Graysmith made in his Yellow Book.
Lafferty's claim of a cover up is never convincingly proved. It seems ludicrous to believe that a judge knowingly let the Zodiac get away simply because the Judge was having an affair with Lafferty's suspect's wife. It also seems unlikely that if Lafferty had any credible evidence on his suspect, all jurisdictions, including San Francisco, would look the other way.
Lafferty makes many misleading statements. He claims his suspect CONFESSED. When you read the whole book, you see his suspect confessed in AA meetings to doing awful things, but never specified his transgressions and NEVER confessed to being the Zodiac. Lafferty states that his suspect's voice was identified as being that of the Zodiac Killer, when what actually happened is someone getting calls from a person claiming to be the Zodiac and asking for help listened to a recording of Lafferty's suspect and said the voice sounded a lot like the person who had been calling her. These are but two examples.
The author is often unclear as to what happened when, making it impossible to put together a coherent timeline of events. At times he contradicts himself, and in many parts of the book it is hard to figure out just what he is claiming.Read more ›
For the most part I enjoyed Lafferty's book about his involvement in the notorious Zodiac murder case as a highway patrolman and the suspect he believes was the evil man behind the mask. Some of the episodes Lafferty retold in his book are wierd and creepy enough to fit in well with the ever growing body of work that has become the Zodiac Saga. Lafferty's face to face encounter with his suspect in an empty parking lot and the story of a young man who was approached by a man claiming to be the Zodiac on the day of the gruesome Zodiac attack upon two young people at the Berryessa National Park are but two examples.
Lafferty doesn't appear to always have his dates & names straight. He alledges that the Vallejo police department was ordered away from the suspect )called George Russell Tucker) because a powerful judge in the area had had an affair with Tucker's wife. The judge, according to the author, was more worried about a scandal involving him than in protecting the lives of people. If that was the case then Lafferty should have gone the route of "Deep Throat" in the Watergate case, turning informant to other law enforcement officers working on the case in different jurisdictions.
The Zodiac is the most notorious unsolved serial killer investigation in U.S history. Mr. Lafferty's has taken 46 years of Zodiac investigative history and condensed it into 445pages of reading, which is complex and with many twists and turns. So much so that I had to go back a few times to make sure I was connecting and understanding the same dots, as Mr. Lafferty moved forward in making his case regarding his suspect. In addition to Mr. Lafferty, the Manadmus Seven team included several individuals with credible investigative backgrounds and professional integrity. While reading the book it is evident that they dedicated a large amount of time and effort in pursuing their suspect, which is much more than can be said of the cities and counties having jurisdiction in these cases. Whether you agree or disagree with Mr. Lafferty's investigative conclusions, anyone who is captivated by the Zodiac case will appreciate his experiences, insights and frustrations in trying to bring justice to the Zodiac's many victims. I have no regrets adding "The Silenced Badge" to my personal collection of Zodiac books.
I have followed the Zodiac since he first began his reign of terror and at the time lived in SF and rode the streetcars etc so looked about for him even had a suspect. I have never been satisfied with the findings of the departments involved since today we have DNA etc and could not see how they couldn't be certain. This book is much more thorough and includes multiple facts left out by others. I do hope it becomes a movie but even more so hope Zodiac owns up before he dies. I also hope that Lafferty writes another book so I can read it. I wanted to buy the book when it first came out but really could not fit it into my budget but finally aquired it and will keep it. I would like to have it signed by the author.
A very disappointing read. There was nothing to prove Laffery's suspect was the Zodiac killer. The majority of the book is hearsay. It's more like a book about these men and their forty years of slalking a man in pathetic attempts at getting information. Unfortunately, the proof they provide, isn't.
I read this book with an open mind, hoping to read something that could finally point to a man who could very well be THE Zodiac. It just didn't happen.
Lafferty has an obvious disdain for the homosexual lifestyle which is ultimately what led him to his suspect; a married, (allegedly) gay man who gave him an evil stare. Lafferty got the creeps, thought the guy looked like the Zodiac composite, and therefore a motive had to be found. Unfortunatley, the motive is just one of the many things in this book there is no proof of. None.
It's all about the author and his investigation (mind you he was California Highway Patrol, not a detective and had NO authority with this case what-so-ever), and how those investigators in law enforcement, such as Toschi, did not listen to him, and how Lundblad should have done things Lafferty's way and consulted with him, etc., etc.
Patting himself and his team on the back gets old, and as I got near the end, I couldn't wait for it to be over.