DENVER -- A grand jury indictment issued in 1999 in the JonBenet Ramsey investigation will be released Friday, and should shed more light on why prosecutors decided against pursuing charges against the little girl's parents.
The grand jury reviewed evidence against John and Patsy Ramsey three years after the 6-year-old beauty queen's body was found bludgeoned and strangled in their home in Boulder on Dec. 26, 1996. A series of possible charges were considered by grand jurors but it's not clear whether they voted to charge one or both parents.
The Ramseys maintained their innocence, offering a $100,000 reward for the killer and mounting a newspaper campaign seeking evidence.
The district attorney at the time, Alex Hunter, who presented the evidence to the grand jury, declined to pursue charges saying: "I and my prosecutorial team believe we do not have sufficient evidence to warrant the filing of charges against anyone who has been investigated at this time."
Hunter did not return a phone message left Thursday by The Associated Press.
Former prosecutor and law professor Karen Steinhauser said grand juries sometimes hear evidence that won't be admitted during trial that can form the basis of indictments. But she added that prosecutors must have a good faith belief that they could prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt before pursuing charges.
"I'm not sure that the release of this indictment is going to change the fact that there has not been able to be a prosecution and probably won't be able to be a prosecution," she said.