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Post Info TOPIC: Photoshopped "Johnny" pictures: the fiasco with the trucker's album


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Photoshopped "Johnny" pictures: the fiasco with the trucker's album

On chat in November 2008, Jimmy Gibson posted two cropped photos of "Johnny" to see what kind of reaction they elicited.  I believed Noreen Gosch, when she said she didn't know they were fakes or where they came from at that time.  She said that Jimmy was executing a maneuver to "assess what kind of reaction there was to them on the message board, and who reacted to it."  He told me later it was to see if there were active pedophiles on there, who would recognize the pictures, given that they were fairly well-known to those trawling the Internet.  Does that explanation make any sense to anyone?

Jimmy said that Starcon was the first person to emerge who recognized the photos.  But then, Starcon had been an abused kid from Boys Town, who had been using the Internet to help track down and rescue other abused kids for the last 15 years. In fact, he had come across the trucker's photo albums posted on the Internet in his investigation of another kid.

"Luke J" then re-posted these two pictures of “Johnny” on the message board, in the thread "Is it or isn't it Johnny?"  Whether "Luke J" is or isn't Noreen Gosch posting on is really immaterial, since at the very least, "Luke J" is her authorized spokesman.  It's been a point of contention with some since he started posting in July 2008, and could be construed as a means of deflecting legal responsbility for some of the controversial statements made.

On Saturday, May 16, 2009, I made a rather interesting discovery.  I Googled Jimmy Gibson's unique e-mail address and found it linked to two websites - the trucker's and his own.  Clearly it was Jimmy, since he identified himself by name, said he was a trucker driving the 49 continental U.S. states, and had followed in the other man's footsteps having cleaned his truck for shows as a kid.

The other trucker had many albums of young boys posted on this site and others, from cross-country trips he made with them in the 80's and '90s.

There were a number of "red flags" that went up with regard to these photos - from suggestive comments made by other members of, to "boy pictures" used as avatars, and some of the commenters own, rather obvious webpages.

I brought this to the attention of several people on, to get their reaction.  
The consensus was that this trucker, indeed, came across as someone who could easily be construed as a pedophile using social networking sites to interact with others of like interests.

One message board member, a former accident investigator in the trucking industry for many years, with expertise in digital imaging, at first thought this breadcrumb trail of Jimmy's might have led to the single biggest break in the case since Johnny Gosch's disappearance in 1982!  He notified Noreen immediately

She and I hadn't been communicating for several months, given some friction between us from a year ago.  I had concerns about her just glomming onto my information, something possibly significant, and cutting everyone else out.  So upon the recommendation of John DeCamp, through a mutual friend, I contacted retired NYPD vice detective Jim Rothstein, who had been involved in the investigation from the beginning and was also a friend of Noreen.  At the very least, Jim might have some contacts who could check out the trucker living in upstate New York. 

But then the accident investigator made the startling discovery that one of the "Johnny” pictures had been faked, someone having photoshopped on a likeness of Johnny's face.  He recognized the clothes worn by the boy in one of the trucker's photo albums, the pose, and the truck in the background.  It was clear under high-magnification. 

If one was faked, the other probably was, too.  Sure enough, I found the original of the other photo from among the trucker's albums.

Initial hopes that finding the trucker was a major discovery in the case were dashed.  But still, the question remained why Jimmy was faking this man's pictures, and what their connection was to each other.


This began a 4-way collaboration with Jim Rothstein, the accident investigator, myself, and Noreen that went on for almost half a year.  I continued to investigate and report my findings to the others.

I confronted Jimmy with knowing the trucker, and asked what was up with the faked pictures.  He was evidently caught off-guard.  He then wrote me conflicting stories of the trucker being a pedophile that he knew, who had never done anything to him or other kids that he was aware of.  Then he said he was a dangerous CIA “asset” who had trafficked boys for illicit purposes between state lines.  And finally, when learning I had initiated direct contact with the trucker, he said he was so dangerous I should buy a gun, that he was going to come after me.  He hung with a very unsavory group of people, Jimmy said, people he didn't want any part of.  He was definitely “on” to me, I was told. 

Shortly into it, I quizzed Jimmy on why the trucker didn't seem to recognize him at all.  He said:  "Duh!  Would you admit to recognizing someone if you had done what he did to me?!"  When I asked him directly if he'd been sexually abused by this man, he was coy about answering.  But he said, "One thing for sure, he doesn't have a big one..." 


Then when Paul Bonacci was shown pictures of the distinctive, highly-customized long haul truck, he recognized the owner.  In separate PM’s with myself and another member of the message board, he indicated having met the trucker on a few occasions, and was well-known for having trafficked kids to sex parties in Omaha, Sioux City, and elsewhere.  He had even taken Johnny Gosch by truck to Colorado!  Paul knew that Hank spoke fluent German, and claimed he only pretended to be slow and a little dim-witted.


Through MySpace, I had succeeded in initiating contact with the man, and continued messaging back and forth for a couple of months.  I didn't pose as anyone else, change my identity, or pretend to be anything I wasn't.  I reasoned that just being honest was the best policy. I never resorted to hiding, deception, or entrapment.  I just showed an interest and directed the conversation.  I found him easy to talk with and likeable!


The others provided discussion points they wanted me to explore with him.


He had truly been one of the original “Trucker Buddies” of the well-respected, elementary school mentoring, non-profit, educational program since it was created in 1992, all the way through to 2001.  He had been recruited by its founder, Gary King.


He has maintained ongoing relationships with many of the kids, now grown, and their families.  He explained how he came to know the kids, and had obtained written permission and health certification to let the kids travel with him on summer vacation.


He made two trips to Europe with a couple of kids, where he drove and exhibited there.  He won a number of exhibition awards, and attracted trade industry media attention and commendations.

The trucker, too, had been a child abused by his own dad before he was 6 - another victim.  I guessed as much from his reactions to things.  He confirmed it.

Gradually I drew the conversations to Jimmy and Paul, later showing him pictures.  He showed no recognition whatsoever.  Neither did he to pictures of Johnny Gosch. 

In spite of having responded to Jimmy’s written messages a several times on, from August 2008 till March 2009, he told me he could never really place who he was.  He had known a couple of Jimmy’s over the years, but none with the last name Gibson, nor from Wisconsin.  He had never heard of Larry King or Charlie Kerr.


He knew who Johnny Gosch was, however, having remembered the missing kid milk cartons and posters taped to the back of truck trailer flaps.


When confronted with this, Jimmy admitted never having met the trucker.  But, he said, that trucker was a “pedo” because of his posted Internet photo albums of boys.  “He must have done things to them.”


Then Paul started backing down on his statements, and contradicting them.  I have never held this against Paul, knowing how traumatized he has been over the years.  I've had exposure to people with DID through my friendship with Darron.  They are prone to dissociate, and can have difficulty distinguishing between what's real and what isn't.  I am not a mental health professional, and not qualified to interpret statements made by people with this condition.  I can't completely accept them as fact, or reject them for being fantasy.


When this information was relayed to Jim Rothstein and Noreen, she appeared perturbed with Jimmy, with evidence that he had knowingly “framed” an innocent man without concern.  If he lied about this, he could be lying about other things.  When I pinned her down, asking if she had any concrete evidence that Jimmy did, in fact, still have contact with Johnny, she said no.  Then I asked if she had evidence he had EVER known Johnny, and she said, no, not really.  Jimmy’s stepdad, WI accountant Richard G. Gibson (now deceased), recounted to her by phone the story of Jimmy having brought Johnny to his home, where they hid out in the basement after having been held captive for a period in 1987.  But might he have been mistaken it was Johnny?  She didn't know.


It was in reponse to these revelations that she started posting on about having consulted an attorney to declare Johnny dead.  It would stop people looking for him, and take the pressure off him and her, she said.  But after having insisted to the media for years that he was still alive, without proof of his not being, why would this help reduce the glare of public opinion and the media?


Then on September 25, 2009, Noreen made a scathing, angry, annonymous post on the message board criticizing Rbeck for having caved in to pressure from Stackdag and Fa Diesis to unban them on chat and the message board, allowing “trouble makers” to continue criticizing her.

Records show that, unbeknownst to most of the members of the message board, "Luke J" had been given moderator status on chat and on that day re-banned Stackdag and Fa Diesis.  The time stamp for this action was before Rbeck had seen her post and reacted.  Clearly, there were also other hidden moderators, that most of us knew nothing about, as well.


On September 25, Rbeck’s moderator status was removed from chat for a weekend, while IG dealt with the upheaval.  The message board was his, but the Chatango chat box was actually hers, though the URL created for it used Rbeck's name.  He hadn't wanted his name associated with it at all.

Then the trucker with the photo albums found the message board and began posting the original pictures of the boy he knew from the ‘80s, which Jimmy had already admitted altering.  He was, naturally, irate that someone had attempted to frame him.  (He would have been more so had he known that both Jimmy and Paul had fingered and implicated him in trafficking kids for illicit purposes.)  He threatened to take legal action if his posts defending his innocence were removed.


After complaints were lodged with the Internet hosting company of the message board, it was then pulled down by IG, who had been in discussions with Rbeck about having site ownership transfered over to her, substituting her credit card for his with the hosting company.  She reportedly wanted to make the transaction immediately, while he wanted to wait.


Then Jimmy Gibson (posting a PM under another account) threatened Rbeck with legal action, using intimidation methods approaching blackmail.  Ricky, not wanting to be harassed or have his family endangered, immediately transferred ownership of the board to IG, and hasn't been much heard from since.


IG then posted an “ownership change” notice under the amusingly appropriate handle of “SHAM”, and responded to my e-mail to her bringing up the coincidental timing of her notice and Jimmy’s  blackmail of Rbeck with the comment, “Kevin, you're getting close to slander.”  Subsequently she admitted to being “SHAM”, and laughed about it.  Was there any link between IG's move and Jimmy's?  Maybe not.  But the effect on Rbeck was clear. 

This new board here was created as a safe place for victims to tell their stories, and for other posters to discuss the Franklin / Gosch cases, and other cases and topics, without being banned and censored for "going against the grain", as on  Those from the old board that wish to refer to us here as "The Dark Side", filled with "dangerous" people, are showing their xenophobic views of the world beyond their "corn belt", smalltown, religious conservative provincialism.

Here, it wasn't intended for any one person's point-of-view to dominate at the exclusion of all others.  No one's perspective speaks for all the other members.  Our views and experiences are our own, but we do think people should be held accountable for what they say and do, and not hide behind fake identities and clever avatars.

I think it's safe to say that none of us posting here approve of "lynchings" and "witch hunts" of people innocent of crimes for which they have not been legally charged.  We respect the "Rule of Law", and don't take justice into our own hands.

-- Edited by Kevin on Monday 26th of October 2009 04:56:21 AM

Borrowing from CNN's Campbell Brown, "No Bias, No Bull" - just the truth ...


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The photoshopped "brand" photos of Johnny ...

Here is another example of someone's handiwork at faking pictures for greater attention. 

Sasha wrote:

Yes, we should not forget the "rockin' X" brand photo that was proven to have been digitally inserted. Who put it in there? Only someone with knowledge of what Jimmy Gibson had said on AMW could know the "rockin' X" brand was related to him. This small instance certainly suggests a purposeful deception had someone modified the image and had given it to Noreen Gosch.

Note B&W photo with the brand photoshopped on, the original color picture to the right, and a supposed blow-up of the "scar".

Borrowing from CNN's Campbell Brown, "No Bias, No Bull" - just the truth ...

Senior Member

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Thank you kevin I was setting up to post the pic of the boy on the bed w/brand

August 27, 2006
On my birthday... I received a package with the following pictures inside.  The first photo is of my son Johnny, shortly after he was kidnapped on Sept. 5th, 1982. He was still wearing the clothing he had on the day he was taken. He is bound and gagged. 
Noreen Gosch
The only photo in that post by Noreen is the B/W boy showing the band
September 18, 2006

The photo below is of Johnny Gosch. It shows his birthmark which is a darker pigmentation of the skin and spans the right side of his chest and slightly over to the arm. The Black/White photo doesn't show it. This is the birthmark, I have been telling people about for 24 years.
This photo is the same in color with no brand.

December 21, 2006
These are the most recent photos of Johnny which were sent to me. We estimate they were all taken within the first few months after he was kidnapped. It further supports the information we have indicating Johnny was taken for the purpose of "human trafficking". Each time I look at photos of him in this situation, the sadness spreads over me as I realize over and over how much my son has endured at the hands of these people. Johnny is one of many children who have been used in this manner. How can any of them sleep at night for what they do to our children.......

Noreen Gosch

Same boy/same room/wearing pajama bottom/as a first pics from Aug/Sept/..
no brand - Is it days, months, delivering papers in pajamas?

I'm also interested in the time frame...

I asked Paul Bonacci on Darron's Chat if he had told John DeCamp about the Brand
before or after the photo's turned up, and if he spoke with DeCamp before he ever spoke to Noreen about it.(Time Frames)

Paul never stated in his reply if he had told DeCamp at all, just that he had told the
police years before.

I do not know when Paul started posting on or when he told Noreen about
the brand...but I was in Chat when Paul and ST5 discussed the brands and the Ranch House and the room hidden below the floor and Paul mentioned that boys that tried to run away got branded. Paul stated he had tried to help Johnny so he would more likey know the year that Johnny was branded...and the time frame of being at the Ranch. Even if it was photoshoped buy Jimmy....

Was it days, months, years?

Has this brand ever been seen before or after?

When did Paul first see the brand on Johnny?

When did Paul say he was at the Ranch?

How many branded boys has Paul seen?

Who makes brands?

Does DeCamp ever mention the Brand?

Does Noreen ever mentioned the Brand?

Has any investigator ever spoken about the Brand?

Has anyone ever spoken about the Brand besides Paul and St5?



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A very interesting recap, thanks for filling in some gaps, Kevin. I have been a member on all of the Franklin forums for the past few years, and to be honest I found a lot of this drama to be "much ado about nothing". Still, it is good to hear it from both sides.

I am wondering about the brands. I still have the photos that another user posted on earlier this year (or last year) of his own rocking X brand on his leg. I'm not sure if they are still on the site. I also don't remember who posted them. Does anyone recall what I'm talking about? Want me to repost?


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That pic of a brand is a tatoo....have you never seen what branded skin looks like...

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