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Ramseys return for a 2nd day of questioning

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ATLANTA — John and Patsy Ramsey returned Tuesday for a second day of questioning by investigators from Colorado about the death of their daughter, JonBenet.

The two sides squabbled Monday over the questioning by special prosecutor Michael Kane. The Ramseys' attorney, L. Lin Wood, said Kane refused to consider any suspects other than the 6-year-old's parents.

Kane said Tuesday that Wood "doesn't want his client to answer some tough questions" about JonBenet's death in the family's home in Boulder, Colo.

"This case is almost 4 years old. Whether it's an intruder or somebody in the house who committed this homicide, there are some difficult, tough questions that have to be answered," he said.

Asked if he expected the mood to change, Kane said: "I'm sure it'll be the same thing, but we'll see." The other members of the team were "supportive of Mike Kane," said Boulder Police Chief Mark Beckner. "He's part of our team."

The investigators spent seven hours Monday questioning Patsy Ramsey at Wood's office and planned to continue interviewing her Tuesday before moving on to her husband.

The Ramseys did not speak to reporters Tuesday.

After Monday's session, Wood said Kane had reduced the questioning of Patsy Ramsey to a "fishing expedition" to pin the child beauty queen's killing on her parents.

He said Kane threatened to walk out of the interview with Patsy Ramsey when the two sides argued over questioning about fiber evidence and security precautions for JonBenet's older brother, Burke. The latter was "a series of questions that I don't think serve any useful purpose" in finding the killer, Wood said.

"They may never clear our names till they find the killer," John Ramsey said Monday. "We're not here to prove our innocence or clear our name. We're here to find the killer of our daughter."

Wood said Monday that the investigators' questions, excluding those from Kane, were mostly fair. At a break in the talks Monday, Mrs. Ramsey had said she was "very comfortable" with questions investigators asked her in the morning session.

"I believe they're asking pertinent questions, so I'm happy to be there," she said.

The two sides disagreed in the afternoon session over questions about fiber evidence from the investigators who Wood said didn't disclose all they knew about the evidence.

The attorney said he also objected to questioning about Mrs. Ramsey's concern for 13-year-old Burke's security at school. Wood said that questioning did nothing to help prosecutors find JonBenet's killer.

The Boulder investigators entered the interviews intending to question the Ramseys about forensic evidence and statements they made in their book, "The Death of Innocence," in which the Ramseys defend themselves and write about people they consider suspects.

JonBenet was found beaten and strangled on Dec. 26, 1996, in the basement of her family's Boulder home. No suspect has ever been named, though Beckner said her parents remain under suspicion. The Ramseys have denied any involvement.

Police first interviewed the Ramseys separately in April 1997 after months of negotiations. They were questioned separately again in June 1998.

A grand jury was convened in 1998 to investigate the slaying but disbanded without an indictment. Critics claim police botched the case early in the investigation and were overly deferential to the Ramseys, who now live in Atlanta.

On the Net: Ramseys' site: www.Ramseyfamily.com

Boulder police: www.ci.boulder.co.us/police