Saturday, January 28, 2012

Was Maura About to Be Expelled from UMass?

I didn't think about this until a recent comment from a reader, but is it possible that Maura was about to face disciplinary action from UMass related to this improper use of a credit card?

It's notoriously difficult to get records from universities, but hopefully someone within UMass can help us answer this question. Obviously, UMass would have been alerted by Amherst PD about this charge. How would that have affected Maura's job with campus security?

I wish Maura had just gone home to her Aunt Janice and gotten her head back together. We all make mistakes. She could have gotten through all this and have still been successful.

** Note to readers: The police have redacted the written signature. But it is on the receipt.

42 comments:

  1. Did she live with her Aunt? I thought her mom was still around? What's up with that? We're there issues with the mom?

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    1. Jennifer, as far as i know Maura's mother died of cancer a few years after she disappeared. Also there was referernce that her mother had an alcohol problem prior to this.

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  2. Perhaps not if the terms of court action were to be dismissal, as you suggested in a previous post.

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  3. The UMass police are sworn in officers for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. If someone admitted to credit card theft wouldn't there be a criminal charge for the theft? How could that charge be dismissed unless the owner of the stolen credit card number agreed not to press charges? At 21 Maura wasn't a minor, she was an adult so there probably wasn't any leniency.

    Is it possible that the "charges" that would go away in February were with regard to disciplinary action by the University, not criminal charges. Presumably the UMass police reported the credit card incident to the University.

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  4. Jennifer...her mother was very sick...she probably did not want to let her mother down.

    Look at the time of the receipt...almost 2 am? She was probably compulsively looking for food after the cafeterias closed...like the 4 am dominos call before she disappeared.

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    1. Maybe it isn't so sinister. She may have just had the 'midnight munchies' having been out drinking or partying. That she paid for it with a stolen credit card is serious but as a student my friends and I always ate late after a night out. I guess what would be interesting is knowing where she was before she ordered these pizzas as who with? Did she eat a whole pizza herself? Was anyone with her when the cops found her in her room. Mr Renner is there any evidence of another person with her?

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    2. Her mugshot was taken and she has a record regarding the situation. I am sure it was investigated before it went that Far. MR renner even says she later aknowledged she used the CC

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    3. Minor point....it is not a mugshot - not technically nor legally. A mugshot is taken in a police station or detention facility, during the booking process. I believe this photo was taken for the police files on the fraud, but as far as I have ascertained from this blog, she was questioned and photographed....but not charged, nor booked. Law enforcement could book her on the charges at any point given her admission and evidence
      , but they evidently chose not to pending her OK performance through right before the disappearance.

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  5. Without looking up the rules/regulations catalog for UMass, I'm going to guess some sort of action by the school was likely because she lived on the grounds. Even if the school was not going to seek action, Maura may have felt uncomfortable to continue living in the dorm--that is, if word was getting around among a few of the girls as to what had happened.

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    1. I would venture a guess that any criminal misbehavior is NOT a matter for school discipline, unless the CC was owned by and reported by another student. This, also, without researching UMASS discipline and conduct.
      Looks like she had multiple issues. Hard to speculate which were chronic and dominant in her life, which may have been newer, acute and short-term, or in what order they may have occurred.

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    2. who knows how many times on that card. you have proof of pizza fraud from one person and totaling three times, if I hear you correctly. but how many more victims are out there that didn't notice any charges to their card? if there's one, there's two, and possibly more. only maura would know just how exposed she was at the time of the sting. there may have been more and the thought of police coming to you any any given point would drive one over the edge too.

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  6. Mr Renner, Do you think that Maura could have been heading to Aunt Janice residence when she went missing

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  7. Maybe the phone call that upset Maura on Thursday was from someone with a headsup telling her that new charges would be file against her? She called her Father for help and they decided she should just leave school befor she was expelled. They went looking for a new car but then Maura crashed FM car and FM was mad so that is why in desperation Maura drove the saturn north maybe heading to Aunt Janice in Bethleham?

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    1. Aunt Janice didn´t live in Bethlehem. Another relative owned a second home there.

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    2. Thank You for correcting me. Where did Aunt Janis live?

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  8. Surely she would have called her Aunt to let her know?

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  9. Wow. Stealing credit cards and she's cheap. I'm going to try to be objective, (even though I deliver pizza myself), but this is even further from the image painted of Maura on Disappeared and 20/20. It's weird how you have this image of Billy and Maura, (and her dad), as being one thing, and then having this dark side emerge out of left field. The stand-up boyfriend is a cheater and the bubbly missing girl is a thief. Is that last part related to her disappearance? It's possible, but then again, everybody has hidden corners in their lives.

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  10. Another incident pointing to someone who was fleeing her problems - and managed to do so.

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  11. I think we're all media savvy enough on this forum to realize how manipulative tv programs are. I would suggest we stick to the facts that James presents here. Think of the facts that the tv coverage didn't mention - the running coach, the other "boyfriends", the credit card fraud, even the fact that she was thrown out of west point was glossed over. TV programs are out to get ratings and publicity for the case in general, they can't be taken as truth. The truth remains to be discovered. Keep up the good work James. Sad as it is to see Maura's mugshot, it provides a better explanation of her situation than the glossed up tv portrait of a carefree happy girl, which lets face it seemed a bit too good to be true anyway.

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  12. James, make sure you are not doing research here for some tv show producer who might take all your info, download some pictures from the internet, run a 20 minute spot of some tv newstainment show and not have the grace to reference you or your pending work. I am sure that in consultation with a lawyer you can limit the use of information posted here. Or perhaps ... now that you have a following ... requiring registration with acceptance of a limited use covenant to view some items is a wise move. The outcomes of your research is your marketplace and some bs tv show producer might rob you of some of that market just as the value of your research zeniths.

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  13. Most TV producers give credit these days. I actually don't mind if they use what I've found. The info needs to get out there. It would only generate more tips. And that's a good thing. In the end, I'll have the book.

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  14. I just can't get over her whole dorm room packed up...doesnt add up if she was abducted.

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    1. Perhaps because of the credit card incident she felt unwelcome in the dorm? If word was getting around (or if she even thought that it might).....that would have made living there very awkward. And what if she feared being asked to leave because of the fraud? I think the abduction theory only makes sense if you look at it from the prospective that Maura happened upon an incredibly lucky and opportunistic "predator" type.

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    2. Perhaps she reckoned she was going to be expelled from the dorm in light of the credit card issue and then crashing her father's car after possibly a few drinks. So she decided to go to the mountains to clear her head and plan her next move vis-a-vis her life and/or she prearranged to meet up with someone and that encounter ended in foul play.

      I'm looking forward to learning if you, Mr. Renner, have been able to uncover whether Maura was going to New Hampshire to liaise with someone...

      Thank you for all your work which by now, I'm sure, is more a labor of love and questing than anything else.

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    3. the only reason why I think that she was abducted is the rag in the tailpipe...I think someone saw her possibly at a gas station and stuffed the rag into it and then followed her waiting for when the car would break down then offer her a ride to town. I hope this isnt true...but it does make sense a little bit..the only part that does'nt add up is the rag in her tailpipe was from her car. I dont know this case is so frustrating feel so bad for her family.

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    4. Anonymous Jan 29 01:32 PM,

      I believe it was Maura´s father who supposedly identified the rag as being part of Maura´s trunk kit.
      Whether this actually was the case I don´t think we can be absolutely certain about.

      Whatever the origin of the rag, it apparently was quite clean and stuffed quite some way into the tailpipe.

      Many people also state that the rag would have been quickly ejected from the tailpipe shortly after the Saturn was started after, say, a stop for gas.

      The only possible explanation I could come up with would be that Maura got some gas for her car at the Swiftwater convenience store & gas station on Rte 112 in Swiftwater village, some 1.5 miles west of the accident spot.
      It would still be quite a stretch, but within that distance the rag would likely have been pretty clean when found stuffed into the tailpipe of the Saturn.

      It is also possible that the presumed fact that Maura´s Saturn was running only on three cylinders at the time, might have contributed to the rag not being ejected from the tailpipe when the car was started after being filled up with gas, as would normally be the case.
      A car expert would have to chime in on this possibly being so, but it would seem like a possibility to me.

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  15. if maura somehow managed to slip away on her accord and start a new life somewhere -- something her assistant track coach and one-time paramour said she had mentioned before -- it's entirely possible that the timing of it was spurred by the fact that she'd soon be getting a new car.

    as to why she might have possibly wanted to go away and start over, who knows? that's where these new, now confirmed revelations could come into play.

    there are so many different variables, unknowns, half-truths and half-assumptions surrounding her disappearance. a for instance: friends and family labeled her "an all-american girl" when she disappeared; knowing what was revealed on this blog recently, my hunch is she wouldn't have liked or agreed with that moniker.

    so despite the aforementioned variables, etc., the possibility exists that she always had a rough plan sketched out in the back of her mind as to how she'd disappear (in broad strokes: maybe walking away from a beat up, broken down car in the middle of nowhere ... if you think about it doing it, you have to think about how you'd do it) and the plan was hastily put into action when she realized her window of opportunity was closing with a new set of reliable wheels on the way.

    i can't imagine the accident in NH was intentional; imagine just how more confounding this mystery would be if all that was found was an unreliable car abandoned on the side of road. then again, we probably wouldn't even be thinking about it all these years later.

    it's that maura was seen and then never heard from again, disappearing in a roughly 10-minute window, that pulls most people into this mystery. if she up and left, that couldn't have been in her plans for making a clean break.

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  16. Here a link that may be of some help explaining what the school may have considered doing.

    http://www.umass.edu/dean_students/codeofconduct/studentcode/#criminal

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  17. There is no signature on this reciept.When making a purchase with a credit card you need to sign the reciept for the purchases you made. Im no lawyer but wouldnt you need proof that a person commited fraud in order to charge them? And without a signature how can one be charged for this crime? So technically we do not know who made this purchase.

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  18. The signature is there, it was just whited-out by police for this records request.

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  19. Before I get into the topic I want to discuss, can I mention one thing. Something that may save us all a lot of trouble when referencing other responses on this blog. When responding, please include a name. Even if it is just your initials, or a sequence of numbers. It is so much easier to reference someone’s post when you have a name to refer to. It does not have to be your real name, make something up! To do this comment as (NAME URL)

    Now that that’s out of the way, I want to touch on the point posted above Jan 28, 2012 06:55 PM (see what I mean, annoying) Anyway, you state that “I just can't get over her whole dorm room packed up...doesn’t add up if she was abducted.” Of course this adds up. I just think that people cannot wrap their minds around all of this because the evidence points to the fact that it could totally be two different possibilities to how she disappeared. Was it suicide, or was she abducted? That is what makes this mystery so compelling. NO ONE KNOWS. Why could it not be possible that she was going to commit suicide, but during the process, she is taken by someone and killed? I think we all just can’t believe the odds. Killers pray on the weak, and at this time it is safe to assume the Maura was definitely emotionally weak at the time of her disappearance.

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    1. You have missed out the third possibility, that she was running away.
      If Maura was running away and her plan was ruined by crashing the car, that leaves two other outcomes. She could have been abducted at he scene or in her panic to escape the police she ran off and at some point ended up in the forest and succumbed to the elements.
      I am inclined towards her ending up in the forest. mainly because of the short length of time left for an abductor, and Maura's determination to avoid any contact with the police.
      There are many things I am reluctant to believe in this case, but that Maura wanted to avoid the police is one thing I am certain of.
      I don't think Maura would have hung around waiting for the police to arrive. She would have moved on as quickly as she could and either ended up in the woods alone or accepted a lift in a passing vehicle.
      It does seem too far-fetched that Maura was abducted while in the process of her running away or her suicide attempt, but of course anything is possible.

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  20. It's not about not believing the odds of a predator happening upon Maura. It's about using common sense to see that she had given all indications she was leaving ... and she did.

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    1. Well I think most of us are using our common sense to see that Maura had given all indications that she was leaving...and she did.
      I don't see how anyone could dispute that.
      Whatever Maura's plan it appears it was interrupted, but
      she could have just carried on with whatever her original plan was, to kill herself runaway for good or have a short break.
      After all, a stranger abductor would not know that Maura had left all her belongings packed up in her room, or that she had left a message with her tutor that she would be off for a week, or that she had been involved in two... one car crashes in less than a week, with the possibility of alcohol being involved.
      Another thing that bothers me is the reports that there were no footprints around Maura's car.
      Unless Maura could fly there must have been some footprints. OK perhaps there were no footprints leading into the forest but that does not mean there were none at all. So why is it being reported that there were none?

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    2. Helen, I believe there was a layer of tightly packed snow by the roadside at the time.
      If Maura got out of the car through the front passenger car door, there likely wouldn´t have been any foot prints to see on the ground, as reportedly the road surface was fairly clean of snow at the time.

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  21. If something is whited out could you please specify it when you put something out to the public? Thanks

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    1. The article says when she signed the receipt the police stepped in

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  22. for what it's woth November 2nd 2003 was a Sunday.

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  23. I would like to confess I know what happened to maura

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    1. You should probably speak to the police, then. The contact info is on the left hand side of this blog.

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  24. Maybe it was bad tipping karma that came back to get her. My sympathy is waning.

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  25. TO ANONYMOUS: should you truly know what happened to Maura Murray then step forward, speak up, and stop being a coward. If not, then kindly keep your fictitious comments to yourself.

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