My name is... cipher

Preliminary Report on

The Origin of the Poem

"The Taft Theory"


Sick of living / unwilling to die



if red /


blood spurting,



all over her new


oh well,

it was red


life draining into an

uncertain death.

she won't


this time

someone ll find her.

just wait till

next time.


In a separate preliminary report, Project MK-ZODIAC provided information about an attack on a student at Riverside City College on April 13, 1965, which may have inspired whoever stabbed Cheri Jo Bates to death on October 30, 1966. The murderer of Cheri Jo Bates may or may not have been the criminal who later became known as the Zodiac.

As explained in the preliminary report, Rolland Lin Taft was convicted of the stabbing and was in jail at the time that Bates was murdered.

As concerns Taft, Project MK-ZODIAC would like to propose "The Taft Theory" which is a possible explanation for the poem written on a desk at the library at Riverside City College which has been alleged to have been written by the murderer of Bates.

According to the State of California, Department of Justice, Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation Report, Supplemental #1, dated January 22, 1971, by Melvin H. Nicolai, Special Agent, the poem was discovered sometime in December of 1966.

excerpt from report

Tom Voigt has this report posted at the website,

Project MK-ZODIAC would like to suggest that it is possible that the poem is connected to Rolland Lin Taft in some way.

Though the poem was found in December of 1966, it is unknown how long the poem had existed.

Therefore, it is theoretically possible that the poem could have been written months, or even more than a year, before December of 1966.

The poem has been interpreted as a description of someone being stabbed with a knife which could be a specific reference to the attack by Taft on April 13, 1965.

On April 17, 1965, there was an article with the headline "Clean-cut youth sought in stabbing" which was printed in The Press and The Daily Enterprise.

Clean-cut youth sought in stabbing

The poem begins with the words "cut" and "clean".

cut clean

If the poem was written by someone who had seen the headline in one of the newspapers, then it is possible that the writer chose the words "cut" and "clean" because the word "clean-cut" was in the headline of the article about the stabbing.

The poem states that "she won't die this time", "someone ll find her". The student that Taft stabbed survived and was aided by her neighbors, so this reference is consistent with the known facts.

The poem mentions "her new dress" which was "red". However, information is not available regarding what clothes were worn by the student that Taft stabbed on April 13, 1965.

Note: The Taft theory does not explain the meaning of the initials "rh" at the end of the poem.

* * *

There are two distinct variations of the Taft theory, as follows:

The Taft Theory - Version #1:
Rolland Lin Taft wrote the poem soon after the stabbing incident of April 13, 1965, before he was arrested.


The Taft Theory - Version #2:
Someone else wrote the poem based upon the stabbing incident of April 13, 1965, which involved Rolland Lin Taft. The person who wrote the poem may or may not have been the murderer of Cheri Jo Bates.

* * *

Project MK-ZODIAC would like to challenge other researchers who may have contact with the Riverside Police Department to investigate this theory.

For example, one question that could be answered is whether or not Taft´s handwriting was similar to the handwriting in the poem.

* * *

If you have any additional information, please email

Also, in the event that for any reason there is any discrepancy in this report, as a courtesy, please advise.

* * *

To read about the attack on a student
at Riverside City College on April 13, 1965,
which may or may not have inspired the Zodiac,
click here

* * *

To return to the message to the Zodiac, click here.

* * *


An Investigation of the Zodiac Killer

by Ricardo Eugirtni Gomez

Please be aware that sections from the Preliminary Report on Project MK-ZODIAC are available only on this website.

Those who would like to refer to any information in this report may provide a brief description and a specific link to this website

Nevertheless, any excerpt of this report may not be copied on any other website, distributed in any email message, printed in any publication, or reproduced in any way without prior written consent according to the law.

If you have any question or comment about Project MK-ZODIAC, please email Copyright © 2008-2012

My name is... cipher