The D.B. Cooper Project

In Brief:

This summer, the FBI closed the case on D.B. Cooper, the notorious sky pirate who hijacked a plane for a small fortune and parachuted out the back, never to be seen again. To commemorate the 45th anniversary of the unsolved hijacking today, we’re re-opening that case by providing a first-ever look at the confidential D.B. Cooper case files, and allowing our readers to become sleuths themselves in helping us generate new leads to one of our most legendary unsolved mysteries. Sign up below.

We’re trying to solve one of the greatest unsolved mysteries of our time, and we need your help.

Here’s how our D.B. Cooper project works. Scroll down and sign in to enter your details and get the files, and we’ll set you up to annotate them. You can see our initial work with the documents at the very end of this post.

We’ll be sharing heaps of files, which have never before been made public. To keep things organized, we’ll be doing so in batches.

D.B. Cooper

So, who is D.B. Cooper?

Forty five years ago, a man boarded a Northwest Orient Plane wearing horn-rimmed sunglasses, a dark tie, and after sipping on a Bourbon and smoking a few cigarettes, managed to hijack the flight for a small fortune, commandeer a set of parachutes and jump out the back mid-flight, never to be seen again.

D.B. Cooper, as he became (falsely) known, has since become an American counter culture legend, inspiring folk songs, films, an annual fest, and countless conspiracy theories. This summer, the FBI officially closed the Cooper case after coming up short on a few wacky leads.

We’re re-opening the case though—here on True.Ink. We’ll be releasing all of the FBI’s confidential case files, a treasure trove never made available before. And true to our spirit of living the story, we’re asking help from our readers to roll up their sleeves and help us annotate the documents in the hopes of generating new leads.

Today’s release is Batch One, which contains interviews with passengers, interviews with the crew, a review of the physical evidence found on board, including eight cigarette butts, one clip on tie, and more. Enjoy! Below are tabs for the Pages and Notes that we have right now. With your help, we’ll surely discover more.