The letter arrived at the San Francisco Chronicle in April 1978, appearing much like some two-dozen others the paper had received over the previous decade. Its handwriting was slanted, lacking capitalization, and it was signed with a symbol that resembled the crosshairs of a gun.
“This is the Zodiac speaking,” it began. “That city pig toschi is good but I am smarter and better he will get tired then leave me alone. I am waiting for a good movie about me. who will play me.”
The letter puzzled handwriting experts, many of whom said it was a fake, but its target was all too real. For nearly nine years, San Francisco police detective Dave Toschi had led one of the most widely covered murder investigations in American history, searching after a man who called himself the Zodiac and claimed to have killed 37 people.
In fact, authorities said the Zodiac