Ok, here are some thoughts on this:
First, let's stop trying to think of a cypher replace... if the person WRITING it needed a computer to decode it, he would have left it on the
computer. At the least, it would have been a computer printout, and not handwritten. Since it was handwritten, we can assume it was something he
could "encode" on the fly, and not need a computer to do for him. So, let's look at something FAR more simple.
Second, he was writing it for a reason. These are notes of some type. These were not notes that were meant for anyone else to ever see, these were
notes for his own personal usage. They would be in a format that he could use them on, and that means that whatever the cypher, it would be legible
on sight with no effort to decode to the writer.
Now that we have addressed the intent of the message, so it can be taken in context with some idea as to WHAT we are decyphering, let's look at the
I think there are some fundamental errors in the text, as far as the way people are looking at it. For instance, there are no lower case letters in
the thing, with a few minor exceptions. The first line of the "notes" page has the listing: "ALPNTE GLSE - SE ERtE" As a capitol "T" is used
elsewhere, I would not take the lower case "t" here to be casual, or a "type" where he meant to put "T". Rather, I would suggest one of two things:
Either this refers to a specific instance (like "Rt" being an abbreviation for "Route"), or (more likely) it is a plus (+) and not a lower case t.
There is also a fair amount of repetitiveness in this (and other places in the notes) GLSE - SE ERtE could be directional (Go Left, South East -
South East - East Route East) The "S" could also be a 5, and not an S, denoting distance (Go Left 5 ?) I would be hesitant to say that it IS a 5, as
the prevalence of SE and NE appear too often, I would take them to be North East and South East. The 7th line of "Notes" is "KLSE-LKSTE-TR
SE-TRSE-M?SE N-???SE". "TRSE" is repeated, and we cannot (again) chalk this up to be a "type". The whole thing could be something along the lines
of "?? South East, ?? South Turn East-Turn Right-South East-Turn Right South East" or "?? 5 ?-?? 5 Turn East-Turn Right 5 ?-Turn Right 5 ?-Make Turn
Right 5 ?" (I used "turn right" as the second character in M?SE looks like both a lower t and an r combined. It could just be a sloppy R, but this
is doubtful as most of the "R"s in the document are well formed, and the top loop is well rounded and positioned.
There has been mention that the "SE" could be some form of pig-latin-esque writing, and therefore irrelevant. While SE is prevalent, it is not
universal. There are also numerous examples of "NE" or other combinations, as well as "SE" appearing on it's own, leading me to believe that these DO
With the first document, there is also some repetitiveness, again with "SE" or "5E" appearing throughout. In this one, however, the most significant
elements are at the end, with the repetitiveness of "NCBE". The numbers, "71 NCBE", "74 NCBE" and "75 NCBE" appearing in sequence, then after a line,
"194 WLD'S NCBE" These are all set off by brackets () from the rest of the note. We again have but to assume that bracketing here would mean much
the same as bracketing in any normal document, which is to say that these are probably "notes" pertaining to the main part of the note. This is
further supported by the fact that these lines all begin more in the center column, signifying that they are supportive lines.
Now... let's look at the case, and see what can be learned from that. The note (allegedly) were found in the pocket of a murder victim, Ricky
McCormick, who was found in a field in St. Charles County, Missouri on June 30, 1999. As he was the VICTIM of the murder, we can't really say that
the notes are significant to the murder at all. To say that they were would mean that the victim knew he was going to be murdered (in which case he
would likely NOT make it so hard to find his killers) or that the notes were left on the body by the murderer(s). The only thing I can find to be
significant about the placement of the body was that it was in the South East corner of the field. Since the family verified that Mr. McCormick
wrote in code since a child, although no one knew how to decypher them, we can assume that these are his and not the killers.
If Mr. McCormick had written like this since a child, it is likely that there are more samples somewhere of his writing in this code. If so, and if
the FBI is truly interested in solving this case, they should release them. Even if the other messages are totally trivial, the whole together may be
a little more easy to decypher.
Also, if Mr. McCormick had been writing in this manner since a child, then the notes could be totally meaningless. They could be a shopping list, a
"to do" list. Most of the attempts at decyphering that I have seen on the message boards have attempted to assign nefarious intent, as if these notes
were the workings of a pedophile trying to snatch young children up off the streets. This was the VICTIM of a crime, not the aggressor, and while the
notes COULD be related to his involvement in criminal activity that led to his demise, they could equally be totally unrelated, as this was (again) a
totally normal method of writing for this individual.
Furthermore, from my understanding, the body was two days decayed at the time it was found, and it was never clearly established that this was, in
fact, a murder. Mr. McCormick had a history of health problems, and this could very well be a case where he died of natural causes, baring the fact
that no good explanation has ever been given as to why the body was in that location to begin with.
There have been numerous attempts to assign meaning to the (seemingly) random strings of letters, but I feel that they are all suffering from a
preconception of what it is they are looking for. As I mentioned, MOST seem to treat Mr. McCormick as the criminal, and not the victim, and make the
notes out to be him casing a job or tracking someone. To look at it with this preconception taints any productive decryption of it, as it would seem
that the intent is to fit the notes into a pattern, rather than determine what the pattern is.
Stop. Think. Start again with a fresh, uncluttered mind, and be open to what the note has to say rather than trying to get the note to SAY something
Let's look with fresh eyes:
Page 1 - The most relevant thing on this page, to me, is the persistence of the sequence "NCBE", the formatting of the lines near the bottom, and the
sequence of the numbers. There have been efforts to relate this to everything from parts for a car to notes on drug transactions.
Disregard these. I am not sure that it was ever established that Mr. McCormick was a mechanic, and if so, I doubt his customers came to him in
chronological order. Customers COULD have come in with vehicles from 71, 74 and 75, but I doubt they would have come in with that order...
And while Mr. McCormick did have a criminal record, there is no evidence he was a big time drug lord, either. To the contrary, he seems to have been
rather financially shot. He died in '99, so why would he have some listing of transactions from 71, 74 and 75. If anything, those would be VERY old
debts... anyone why skipped on debts from then would certainly have skipped out on other debts since, and any debt that old would long since have been
I would say that those three are years, as they are chronological. I know that Mr. McCormick had 4 children, and he was 41 at the time of death, so
those would fit in somewhat to the years potential children could have been born, but there are only 3 listings. The last line is in somewhat the
same format, but the number is 194, which blows the year thing if they are taken together. They are NOT together, however, so I would look at the
three indented lines together, and only loosely consider the other lines when looking at them.
There are several instances of 5 character strings, TFXLF, TRFXL, etc. The LAST 5 characters of the first document are TRFXL, and the last 5
characters of the "notes" document are "XDRLX"
There is one example of an apostrophe, which if taken to be ownership, reads: "194 WLD'S NCBE" which would mean WLD is a person, and NCBE is something
that can be owned by that person.
99.84.3 is NOT a Julian date, as has been asserted. Mr. McCormick was literate, but not highly educated. It is doubtful that he would do Julian date
conversions in his head, nor would that be an ideal method for noting dates.
Look for similarities, look for consistencies, look for patterns. Remember that what you are looking at has meaning to the person reading it, but may
be totally irrelevant to anything or anybody else. It could be directions to someone's house, a shopping list, or the words to a song he was thinking
about. He wrote it because it was important to him at the time, and was not meant for anyone else to ever read.
The cryptic nature of the code is not meant to obfuscate it. He wasn't writing it to hide it from anyone else, no more so than anything else he
wrote. He wrote these notes in this cypher because that is how he wrote, and had since a child. The fact that it is encrypted means nothing, other
than that he wrote it.
Do some research on Mr. McCormick. Look to the clues that other people have posted, but always keep in mind that each of them has an idea as to what
the notes mean BEFORE they decoded them, and most of them are going on the assumption that these notes have some criminal element to them. Remember,
these are normal notes a man took of his normal life, even if they were potentially criminal, and he wrote them this way because he wrote that way all
the time, not that these notes were anything special.
Take a fresh look... and good luck. Now, my partner is yelling at me to get back to work...so have fun!
edit on 11-4-2011 by jpMocs because: (no reason given)