Donald Lee Bujok was inflicted early on in his life with a pronounced speech impediment and schoolchildren were not the forgiving type, resulting in persistent bullying, that only served to marginalize him on his first tentative steps towards the fringes of society and an isolation and rejection that would eventually manifest itself in the most brutal way.
Bujok then attempted his bid for freedom in Fossen's car, after which an intensive, yet brief, manhunt ensued, before the suspect was finally cornered by a group of law officers hiding in a restroom north of Chester and with no possible exit and heavily outgunned, his days of freedom were about to come to an end.
Donald Lee Bujok former army veteran and railroad worker, uttered the words "Guilty your honor" before being led away to serve his time in Old Montana State Prison, that became forever etched in the public psyche for the infamous Jerry's Riot that took place on 16th April 1959.
Deep inside the Montana walls of correction, it appeared that the young adolescent Bujok was learning little of value, becoming a disciplinary problem, having been sent to the hole several times, surrounded by hardened criminals of an even less forgiving nature than the schoolchildren that preceded them. But it was the writings of another prisoner, Ed Edwards, that etched a belief, that the man who started life ridiculed on an almost daily basis, was starting to forge his own manifesto of evil, for an afterlife, that would now take fair play to the next level, but this time he would become its orchestrator.
Donald Lee Bujok served only eleven years of a life sentence, being released from Montana Prison on December 17th 1968 and three days later the Zodiac announced his arrival to the world, as the lonely pullout on Lake Herman Road would testify to one dark night in Northern California.
Kevin Robert Brooks believes that the young boy sculpted as a child, hardened in the walls of confinement and further isolated from the clutches of reality, had now embarked on a mission of evil from which their was no turning back, as his collection for the afterlife was now underway.
David Van Nuys, co-author of the book 'This is the Zodiac Speaking', parallels the timeline of the Zodiac with ever increasing thrill and risk, apparent in many serial killers, from the use of a .22 handgun in the Lake Herman Road murders, to a 9mm Luger in the Blue Rock Springs attack, followed by the costume driven close quarter attack at Lake Berryessa and finally the murder of Paul Stine in the built up area of Presidio Heights, where the killer almost came into full view for the first time, but sadly since that day, that view has blurred to 43 years and counting.
The day the killer shuffled away from the scene of Washington and Cherry, was may'be indicative of a man whose failing health was to prove one step too far in his continued pursuit of souls, having taken one risk too many and now needed a different agenda.
Since that day the killer has bombarded the press with a multitude of letters, ciphers and postcards to keep his legacy alive, inherent of a man that yearned the attention, he so clearly lacked at some point during his life, but is that life that of Donald Lee Bujok ?.
Fingerprinting has since ruled out Donald Lee Bujok to ones held on file, after samples sent to the investigatory bodies by Kevin Robert Brooks apparently provided no match, as it had done so for previous suspects before him. But one has to ask the question, are the ones held on file that of the Zodiac, after all he was undoubtedly a ruthless killer, but was he a fool, as his misspelt letters had led us to believe.
It appears that DNA could be the final denominator for this 20th century crime, to eventually become a 21st century resolution and without doubt place the man firmly before the myth for the first time since that fateful day of December 20th 1968.
Four interesting letters Donald Lee Bujok sent to the Billings Gazette are shown here, along with an extract from convicted killer Edward Edwards book, in which he mentioned another prisoner in Deer Lodge Montana as his 'most uncomfortable memory' while serving there.
Opordanalytical explains the correlation between Bujok's letters to the editor and the similarity to Zodiac correspondence around the same timeline