What Happened to Burke Ramsey? An Update on JonBenét Ramsey’s Brother


Jan. 22 2024, Updated 4:13 p.m. ET

A closeup of Burke Ramsey's face on the Dr. Phil show.
Source: Dr.Phil

December 25, 2023, marked the 27th death anniversary of JonBenét Ramsey. The tragic murder of the beauty pageant goer still has many scratching their heads, wondering what really happened and if members of her family are, in fact, as innocent as they claim to be. The highly publicized case has been the center of various documentaries, one of which helped JonBenét's brother, Burke Ramsey, quietly collect a settlement for an undisclosed amount in 2024.

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Speaking of JonBenét's brother Burke, where is he today? While he has managed to keep a fairly low profile given the scrutiny he's faced over his sister's unsolved murder case, we've got an update on what he's doing for work. Here's everything we know.

What happened to Burke Ramsey?

Burke gave his first public interview to Dr. Phil in 2016, in which he explained that he had long avoided the press. “For a long time, the media basically made our lives crazy,” he said.

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He added, “It’s hard to miss the cameras and news trucks in your front yard, and we’d go to the supermarket sometimes, and there’d be a tabloid with my picture [and] JonBenét’s picture plastered on the front. They would follow us around. Seeing that as a little kid [was] just this chaotic nightmare … It just made me a private person.”

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The then-29-year-old — who now reportedly works as a software engineer, according to The Sun — also responded to the public’s lingering theories that he killed JonBenét and that his parents covered up everything that happened. “Look at the evidence or the lack thereof,” he said. “I don’t know what to say to that because I know that’s not what happened. There’s been a few people who’ve said it’s not even physically possible for a 9-year-old to do that.”

At the time, many viewers were creeped out — and even suspicious — because Burke was smiling during the interview. But on his show, Dr. Phil offered an interpretation of Burke’s behavior.

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“This is anxiety,” the host said. “He’s socially uncomfortable. I’ve seen it a lot. He’s not autistic, he’s not weird, he’s not creepy. He’s just nervous. This is a young man that has grown up in kind of a siege mentality … You have to understand, when this happened, he was plucked out because the media was all over them. So he’s been moved around a lot. He lived in isolation quite a bit, and he’s just not socially comfortable, and he’s certainly not comfortable being on camera.”

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In 2024, Burke Ramsey settled his defamation lawsuit against CBS Corp.

After CBS Corp. aired The Case of: JonBenet Ramsey in September 2016, Burke claimed it painted the picture that he was JonBenét's killer. He fired back with a $750 million defamation lawsuit in December of that year in which he noted that he "did not kill his sister and had no involvement in her brutal murder."

Fast forward to January 2024, and sources like The Denver Post are reporting that Burke and CBS Corp. have finally reached a settlement. The terms and settlement amount were not disclosed, and it appears both parties do not intend to reveal them in the future.

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John and Patsy Ramsey, the parents of JonBenet Ramsey, meet with a small selected group.
Source: Getty Images

John Andrew Ramsey, JonBenét's half-brother, says the killer can still be found.

In a 20/20 installment, John Andrew explained the toll the case — and all the suspicion — has taken on the Ramsey family.

“We lost our sister and our daughter, a family member. We were victims, and the very people that we thought were gonna come in and protect us and help us were pointing the finger at us,” he told 20/20, per ABC News. “We were just regular people and then all of a sudden our world just got turned upside down.”

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He also assured the public the case can be solved. “There’s a narrative out there that this is an unsolved homicide and that we just have to accept that as fact, and that is not the truth,” he said. “If we leverage the evidence [and] we follow the facts, we will find this killer.”

He went on: “What happened to JonBenét, what happened to my family, what happened to the community at large, is wrong. This 6-year-old little girl was killed on [investigators’] watch and, ultimately, they are responsible for finding the killer, and they can do it, and we want them to do it.”

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