The FBI files continued with "It was not determined whether the specimens in captioned case were prepared by the writer of the Q1 demand note in the case (redacted) Wells Fargo Bank, Sutter Street Office, San Francisco, California, 12/3/68; BR" because of distortion in the Q1 demand note and a lack of comparable material". Was a fledgling Zodiac hovering around San Francisco in the December of 1968? The Wells Fargo Bank in Sutter Street is a two minute walk from Union Square, where the Zodiac Killer likely entered the taxicab of murder victim, Paul Stine.
Black Bart (Charles Earl Boles) adopted the nickname "Black Bart" and proceeded to rob Wells Fargo stagecoaches at least 28 times across northern California between 1875 and 1883, Boles was invariably polite and used no foul language, despite its appearance in his poems. He dressed in a long linen duster coat and a bowler hat, using a flour sack with holes cut for his eyes as a mask. He brandished a shotgun, but never used it. These features became his trademarks. The idea of a robber, handing out poetic notes in northern California, wearing a head sack with eyeholes, sort of rang a bell for some reason. Especially with the Wells Fargo connection.
Black Bart is a 1948 American western film directed by George Sherman and starring Yvonne De Carlo, Dan Duryea as the real-life cowboy bandit Charles Boles, and Jeffrey Lynn. It was distributed by Universal-International and produced by Leonard Goldstein. It was shot in Technicolor and was also known as Black Bart, Highwayman. The film was written by Luci Ward, Jack Natteford, and William Bowers and was released on March 3, 1948.
The results of the handwriting comparison were inconclusive "because of distortion in the Q1 demand note and a lack of comparable material". Despite the handwriting submitted being unable to be matched to the demand note because of "lack of material", it appears that this 15-worded note was enough to place it in the Zodiac files under "Zodiac Extortion". Was this because the author of the bank robbery note used the word "Zodiac" and/or investigators noticed a similarity of handwriting in the original note? The notion of a threatening bank robbery note containing the pseudonym Zodiac, seven months in advance of the Debut of Zodiac letter, in which the Bay Area killer introduced himself for the first time, is puzzling to say the least. The FBI report stated "It is noted that the Q1 demand note mentioned in the attached Laboratory report was submitted by San Francisco with an airtel dated 6/27/69". June 27th 1969 was still one week before the Blue Rock Springs attack on July 4th 1969, and just over a month before the Debut of Zodiac letter. Why would this threatening note be considered Zodiac material before the Zodiac pseudonym ever emerged in the San Francisco Examiner offices? I find it unusual that such a brief robbery note could be considered to have been penned by the Zodiac Killer without a signature underwriting the note itself.