Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Ross Sullivan Discussion

Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby TheMist » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:43 pm

The major problem with handwriting comparison is that it tends to compare only two objects, that is person A's handwriting with person B's handwriting. You can't decide how how distant two objects are from each other if you don't have at least a third object to compare them to. Is the distance significant? Are the similarities surprising?

A---B

In the example above, is A close to B? Is it far away?

A---B------------C

Do you have a better idea of the distance between A and B now?

A much better approach would be to take a large random sample of handwritings, quantify the similarities between them, and then insert your target handwritings in the group. As long as you're comparing only A with B, you really aren't comparing anything at all.

To stay with the method you are using now, make 50 alphabets drawn from a whole bunch of handwritings of similar vintage and provenance (to control for education system) and then you would have a better comparison. You could estimate the probability of a match for any given letter.
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby morf13 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:50 pm

Tahoe27 wrote:
Ham Friend wrote:Assuming IM innocent, who the heck goes through this kind of elaborate hoax for $40?


That's just it. A couple of people have mentioned you talked about how much a yearbook like this would sell for. Honestly, it comes down to believing you--or not, or thinking the writing looks like Zodiac's--or not. Case solver? Nope, but it's interesting to look at none-the-less. ;)


Actually, this book could be a case solver. Zodiac left a palm print, possibly Ross did too.
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby morf13 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 2:53 pm

Ham Friend wrote:
Tahoe27 wrote:
Ham Friend wrote:Assuming IM innocent, who the heck goes through this kind of elaborate hoax for $40?


That's just it. A couple of people have mentioned you talked about how much a yearbook like this would sell for. Honestly, it comes down to believing you--or not, or thinking the writing looks like Zodiac's--or not. Case solver? Nope, but it's interesting to look at none-the-less. ;)



Lol. I don't care if people believe me or not. I know its real and thats enough to satisfy me. Im a collector; its all about the thrill of the hunt for me. This is my biggest catch to date and it feels good. I am hoping/thinking the book will be properly analyzed in the near future. I've got nothing to hide. I do have a witness but that would be my girlfriend and im guessing people would just assume she's in on it too so its moot, eh? Case solver? Probably not but a useful tool at the very least.


Yeah, pretty clear that the book is legit, there's no reason to make it up, and then you would have to forge the handwriting remarkably similarly to Ross's known writing. I don't see why anybody would doubt that you bought a yearbook signed by Ross Sullivan, it's not like you are claiming that you've got Bigfoot's body in your basement, LOL
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Ham Friend » Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:22 pm

Also, you know that im in touch with a detective, Morph. That would be super brazen of me to send him all this info If I forged it. I'll post a screenshot of our conversation if i need to.
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Tahoe27 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:32 pm

morf13 wrote:
Tahoe27 wrote:
Ham Friend wrote:Assuming IM innocent, who the heck goes through this kind of elaborate hoax for $40?


That's just it. A couple of people have mentioned you talked about how much a yearbook like this would sell for. Honestly, it comes down to believing you--or not, or thinking the writing looks like Zodiac's--or not. Case solver? Nope, but it's interesting to look at none-the-less. ;)


Actually, this book could be a case solver. Zodiac left a palm print, possibly Ross did too.


Pretty sure they've checked Ross's print already.

If it's Ross's writing, that's great! Like I mentioned, it's interesting to look at. Unfortunately, a yearbook would be the poster-child of bad DNA/print examples. But hey, you never know...

I would have to disagree too...I think there is a lot of reasons someone would make something like this up! Think about it. Don't get me wrong, I certainly hope it's not! There has just been so much over the years, Zodiac copy-cat letters, fake LB hoods...the whole shebang. Why people do it, you'd have to ask them.

***

Also, are the similarities remarkable? Why include a sideways "h" if the rest of it is worthy on it's own? To show an example of how people write so similarly, take a look at the other autographs in red. Two of those with different names are practically identical.
Image

"...they may be dealing with one or more ersatz Zodiacs--other psychotics eager to get into the act, or perhaps even other murderers eager to lay their crimes at the real Zodiac's doorstep." L.A. Times, 1969
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby smokie treats » Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:03 pm

Tahoe27 wrote:Also, are the similarities remarkable? Why include a sideways "h" if the rest of it is worthy on it's own? To show an example of how people write so similarly, take a look at the other autographs in red. Two of those with different names are practically identical.


Which ones?

O.k., so Ham cherry picked the characters from the Zodiac press submissions that looked similar to the handwriting in the yearbook. So he is not an expert handwriting analyst because an expert handwriting analyst would have made a more thorough comparison of Ross characters to a lot of of different Zodiac characters. But, it seems to me that it would be very difficult to do the exact opposite, which would be to cherry pick Zodiac characters from a bunch of different press submissions, and then try to put them all together in a way that looks like normal handwriting. You could trace them, but that wouldn't look like natural handwriting like this does:

Ross Yearbook 1.gif


EDIT: My point is, if someone was so good at forgery to be able to select characters from several different Zodiac writings, and put them together so that they look like natural handwriting, then why or how could the same person then make an amateur handwriting analysis attempt to show that Ross' handwriting is similar to Zodiac's handwriting? It just does not seem likely. No offense intended, Ham.

EDIT 2: You would think that the same expert forger would do a better job of handwriting analysis after all of that work to create the masterful forgery.
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Ham Friend » Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:11 pm

TheMist wrote:The major problem with handwriting comparison is that it tends to compare only two objects, that is person A's handwriting with person B's handwriting. You can't decide how how distant two objects are from each other if you don't have at least a third object to compare them to. Is the distance significant? Are the similarities surprising?

A---B

In the example above, is A close to B? Is it far away?

A---B------------C

Do you have a better idea of the distance between A and B now?

A much better approach would be to take a large random sample of handwritings, quantify the similarities between them, and then insert your target handwritings in the group. As long as you're comparing only A with B, you really aren't comparing anything at all.

To stay with the method you are using now, make 50 alphabets drawn from a whole bunch of handwritings of similar vintage and provenance (to control for education system) and then you would have a better comparison. You could estimate the probability of a match for any given letter.



You are exactly right. Definitely something I didnt think about. I asked my employees to all write down the word "gun" on a sheet of paper. I had 11 samples but unfortunately failed to ask them to do all lowercase letters so half of what I got is incomparable. Just for fun I will get a bunch more samples from people for "gun", "quiet" and "fellow" as both Z and Ross used those words. Im not gonna go digging for vintage samples as that would be very time consuming but will gladly work with something if you want to look. If I need to start filming these people writing the words down for provenance sake I suppose I can do that too :D You're right about getting a c sample; Just these 5 samples alone in comparison to Ross/Z make it that much MORE compelling! But yes, I know, we cant just go off of 5 samples.

NOTHING here has been rotated or tilted. Zodiac word "guy" is background for the sample overlays. Aside from Ross, obviously:), sample 3 is the closest but the spacing is way off
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Ham Friend » Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:24 pm

TAHOE- I understand where you're coming from about the "z". It was really REALLY just an observation more than anything. I rotated the pic around at all angles and that "z" jumped right out at me. Again, just an observation. I suppose it does hurt the integrity of the over all alphabet but I did note at the top in the key that it isnt a "z". I've already sent it to the detective so its too late too crop it as far as that goes but if I ever do a version 2.0 I'll be sure to leave it out. To answer your question though, yes, it IS worthy on its own. The similarities are stunning, IMO
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Paul_Averly » Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:20 pm

Tahoe27 wrote:Pretty sure they've checked Ross's print already.


That is an unbelievable assertion that Ross was properly ruled out with prints by LE. The evidence would suggest the complete opposite. His name was not in the FBI files with all the other suspects whos prints were checked. Vallejo PD also has no record of Ross ever being a suspect.

There was a rumor that Ross prints didn't match a print from CJB VW. And there is no proof that print came from killer. But again, it's all rumors.
Peterson's notes make it sound like Toschi only asked RPD about Ross.
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Re: Possibly MAJOR Ross Sullivan writing find in yearbook

Postby Paul_Averly » Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:25 pm

morf13 wrote:Yeah, pretty clear that the book is legit, there's no reason to make it up, and then you would have to forge the handwriting remarkably similarly to Ross's known writing. I don't see why anybody would doubt that you bought a yearbook signed by Ross Sullivan, it's not like you are claiming that you've got Bigfoot's body in your basement, LOL


The naysayers have run out of ammo and are now really grasping for something. Claiming the writing is fake is the obvious last ditch effort.
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