The 1990 ‘Celebrity’ Card [add. 07/18/19]

After convincingly demonstrating that the 1974 Zodiac letters were forged by members of the SLA, Richard Grinell of has brought our attention to a 1990 postcard which from all appearances looks like the work of the Zodiac. My suspect George Karadanis would have been approaching his 60th birthday in 1990.
from Grinell’s post ‘The Celebrity Cipher [Part 2]’ of 6/18/19                                 “The Zodiac Killer began his cipher mailings to the Vallejo Times-Herald on July 31st 1969, to which he mailed part one of a three-part cipher to Bay Area newspapers. So this 1990 offering in ciphertext (if Zodiac) would mean the only two confirmed mailings to the Vallejo Times-Herald would both have contained code. The characters of the code are certainly recognizable, but not difficult to replicate for anybody who knows something about the Zodiac Killer. The Bay Area murderer gloried in his narcissism, … so designing a postcard based on  the Celebrity Ciphers of Luis Campos would not be beyond him. These ciphers were published regularly in the newspapers featuring well-known people, past and present. The reader had to identify the person and quote from the encoded text. The idea that the Zodiac Killer, deeming himself a celebrity, would then tease us a further time with his name, is not so far-fetched.”
Card image above and quote below both from ‘The Celebrity Cipher [Part 2]’                                                 “You can see that the foot of the Luis Campos cipher solution on the right [actually below] is reserved for the celebrity’s name … we should expect the red rectangles to contain the name of the postcard author. The blue rectangle to contain the address and the green rectangle to harbor the message.”

Above image, again from ‘The Celebrity Cipher [Part 2]’
I’m going to plug in Joe’s name and then work backwards in straight substitution to solve the rest. Of course it’s cheating but there’s no other way to get anything out of it. Dismiss it if you must!
Let’s follow Richard’s advice and insert the name in one of the red boxes:

Here we have Karadanis’ name . I throw in the P because I’ll bet sometimes he calls himself Joey Paradise – a mob name for those who couldn’t pronounce Karadanis. The + sign has been given 2 solutions, K and P. It comes in handy later. Of course it only works if you know The Names in advance.

Above: I’m making the assumption that the address is a California one- the B symbol is a C letter.

Filling in more letters in the address. Now using more K/P’s for +

The short message being filled in.


The complete sender’s address after choosing between our K’s and P’s:

Royal Oaks / Crown Road / Petaluma, Ca

The intersection of these two streets in Petaluma is currently the site of a senior living community. I’m going to research its history. Note Petaluma is just a few miles north of Vallejo, where the card was received.

and the msg:

Ah Fun! Aime gun!

Eat at Joe’s!

RN (real name);

Joey Karadanis

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