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Zodiac Killer ID: Did man's hunt for biological father lead to Zodiac Killer?

A new book has surprised the authorities who still have and open case on the Zodiac Killer. The author reports that his biological father was the man who claimed to have killed as many as 37 people and was never caught. Gary L. Stewart was abandoned on a doorstep as a child and he claims that his hunt for his biological father has led him to the disturbing find that his father, Earl Van Best, was also the Zodiac Killer, according to CNN News on May 14.

Is this the Zodiac Killer? Did a man's hunt for his biological father lead to the identity of the Zodiac Killer?
Is this the Zodiac Killer? Did a man's hunt for his biological father lead to the identity of the Zodiac Killer?Earl Van Best mugshot/ LAPD/ HarpersCollins

Stewart’s book, “The Most Dangerous Animal of All: Searching for My Father ... and Finding the Zodiac Killer,” was co-written with journalist Susan Mustafa. The book was compiled from the notes that Stewart kept during his journey of investigation in trying to find his biological father, reports MSN News today.

Stewart as an infant was left on a doorstep in Louisiana and he reports he had an “idyllic childhood” with his adopted parents. His biological mother found him about 10 years ago, and she hadn’t seen the man who is Stewart’s father since she left him as a baby on that doorstep. She did however give Stewart, now 39, some clues to go on.

Together Stewart and Mustafa took the facts learned and constructed a psychological profile of the man who was his biological father. Finding his father’s identity and investigating his life through the people who knew him unwrapped some sickening consequences.

The late Earl Van Best Jr. had disturbing fixations starting in his childhood, claims the book. Stewart’s book goes on to explain that the man who he believes is the Zodiac Killer and his father had disturbing attributes continuing into his adult life. His publisher describes the man they believe to be the Zodiac Killer:

“As a boy with disturbing fixations, as a frustrated intellectual with pretensions to high culture, and as an inappropriate suitor and then jilted lover unable to process his rage."

The publicist for HarperCollins, Tina Andreadis, said that Stewart’s father had a criminal record from San Francisco. They were able to get a mug shot of the man from those minor crimes. The strong resemblance from the police sketch of the Zodiac Killer and Stewart’s father’s picture is uncanny, claims the publicist.

The Zodiac Killer taunted police and media with letters on the killings of eight victims they had found, even sending in blood-soaked clothes from the victims as proof that he was the killer. While they found eight of his victims, the Zodiac claimed in letters to have killed dozens more, as many as 37 in total.

Two victims were able to give police a description of the Zodiac Killer back during his killing spree in 1968-1969. Bryan Hartnell was a college kid when he was stabbed eight times by the killer. He and his girlfriend were on a picnic when a man came out of nowhere dressed bizarrely in a black hood and a black shirt with an emblem on it.

That emblem would soon become the trade-mark of this killer. Both Hartnell and his girlfriend gave a description of the killer to a police sketch artist. Hartnell’s girlfriend died from her 20-30 stab wounds after giving police that information.

That sketch made by police at the time does have an uncanny resemblance to Stewart’s father’s mug shot. This is an open case, claims San Francisco Police spokesperson Albie Esparza. The police had no idea about this book, but the detectives will be taking a look at these new claims said Esparza.

After all these years, they still receive tips, but nothing has panned out so far, according to police. Could it be that an abandoned son’s search for his biological father finally uncovers the true identity of the Zodiac Killer?