Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Another Thought Concerning Petrit Vasi

A reader brought up an intriguing idea.

I've never liked the theory that Maura hit Petrit Vasi with her car the night she had the breakdown at work. I just don't see how she could have snuck out and back so quickly, without being seen.

But what if it was a friend who borrowed her car? And that friend hit Vasi.

Was that why they were traveling in tandem into New Hampshire? Was the plan to get rid of or damage Maura's car, and return to Amherst together? Did the accident then change their plan?

It would explain a lot of things, not to mention the amount of alcohol and the interest in lodgings with two bedrooms.

What do you think?

128 comments:

  1. In the specific scenario you laid out above, I don't see the "fit"--I can't imagine how this leads to Maura dropping off the face of the earth, and her accompanying friend (presumably) returning to Amherst or wherever unnoticed and forever unconnected to the case. Are you suggesting that someone coerced Maura into tandem-driving to NH and subsequently killed her? That's pretty extreme. And I don't see how this leads to any feasible "runaway" theory.

    But there could be something to it. It sure would explain Maura's state of mind if her friend called her up like "um I just hit some dude with your car and he might be dead, and also I left the scene so you might be in deep shit, my bad". I'd sure be catatonic if my friend laid that on me.

    I need to think this angle through further.


    Also, is it known for sure that the lodging inquiries were for 2 people? I've never heard that before. If that's true, it changes the scope of basically everything in this case.

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    1. ^^sorry I meant 2 bedrooms, not exactly 2 people.

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    3. The Salamone place was not for one person. http://mauramurray.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-salamone-place-was-not-for-one.html

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    4. Maybe the friend and MM were fighting over the accident and framing MM for the accident. They leave to re wreck the car to make it loom Ike an accident MM and the friend fight, MM threatens to report the friend for what happened and the friend snaps in a drunken state and pushes her from a ledge? Doesn't seem so crazy seems how MM was already on probation and vehicular manslaughter is a huge charge and no way to talk herself out of it.

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  2. Oh gotcha I remember that now. I dunno, if she didn't know enough about the property to know it wouldn't be feasible to rent (due to contract, keys, etc) it's very possible she was unaware of the size. Although you did say that she'd stayed nearby with Fred before... It's not what I'd call conclusive, but as you said, it definitely lends itself to the tandem theory. Thanks.

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  3. The condo thing has always seemed weird to me. There are quite a few clean, moderately priced hotels in lincoln, why call for a condo? Was the condo more private? When I was 21, why would i call for hotels, buy a bunch of booze and drive hours away on a school night? Probably to meet up with a dude I like that I was eager to impress regardless of cost. Possibly someone a little older, maybe a little shady. The type of guy who might not speak up if I disappeared along the way. I don't think the vasi thing fits here.

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  4. I don't know the condo market in Bartlett, NH but I would assume most condos are 2+ bedrooms. There might be some one bedroom condos but probably not many. And Maura may not have been aware of them. And the price of a 1 BR & 2 BR condo are probably similar. No clue what prices in NH would be back then maybe 90,100-150,200 a night? Probably not much more than a hotel costs. Hotels have multiple beds as well....

    So to say she called a condo owner who owns a 2 BR condo is not evidence of much of anything. IMO at least and certainly others may see it differently.

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    1. Maura must have had much more than $280 if she considered renting a condo seriously enough to call around about it. She leaves her room in a state for someone else to find it. It will probably be several days before someone enters her room. So she must have had more than $280 in order to confidently leave her room in a way that in was "meant" for discovery by a third party. Based upon the email Maura sent, Maura was intending/hoping that no one would enter her room for at least a week. So she must have believed that she had enough resources to get by away from her dorm for several days, and several days in a hotel or a condo costs way more than $280 (or $240 after booze).

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    2. Do we know where Maura got her money? I know she had that job, but could she count on others (dad?) to give her money if she asked? I ask because if she withdrew nearly all of her money, it seems to me she either expected to be able to get more money easily later (was she meant to work again that week? Would she have been fired?) or she expected to not come back at all.

      I don't know how her mind works/worked though, so this is just thinking out loud.

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    3. Maybe she stole another credit card.

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    4. Plenty of condos are one bedroom. Not sure where you got the idea that one bedroom condos are rare.

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  5. I've never bought the tandem theory as Butch Atwood would have observed another car at the scene. I suppose she could have been meeting someone somewhere and they weren't directly following her. If Fred knows someone hit Vasi with his car could he be breaking the law by not reporting? This mightexplain why he has stated that whatever was going on in her life before she went missing doesn't matter

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    1. Looking through the prism of the "FM knowing that MM hit PT" hypothesis, a lot of things we know fit together well.

      However, the problem with any hypothesis is that there are so many effectively-random things that can happen in any situation. People bring their personalities with them. Maybe Butch lied about what he saw because he didn't want to be more involved. Maybe he just didn't care either way so he didn't make note of things that happened and therefore didn't tie them to MM. Maybe MM had an ophthalmic migraine as she was pouring wine into the Coke bottle and that's what threw her off the road. Maybe she experienced a serious trauma and got amnesia like Amber Gerweck and ended up in a hospital and died without anyone knowing who she was. Maybe someone MM knew had unsecured guns and took one with her and used it to end her life.

      My point is that every idea we have may be utterly incorrect. We have a decent amount of information but not only are we missing information we know exists, we also don't know what information we don't know about.

      I do believe there is more information we _could_ have that we simply haven't thought of or haven't tried to retrieve. I read that there was no security footage from the general store, but what about the thousand other cameras MM passed on the way to the accident scene? She very probably drove by several businesses as well as on a freeway. Has anyone looked at the traffic cameras to see if someone else was in the car or whether a known car was near her car on the freeway? We may never think of these things, or we may even discount them automatically, but the fact is if we knew she didn't seem to be with anyone else, that would deal a serious blow to the "tandem" hypothesis.

      Maybe good detectives have the experience and intuition to know how to weed through these things without all the information and be right most of the time. There doesn't seem to be any "smoking gun" in this case, though, as far as I can tell, which makes it maddening for someone like me trying to figure it out.

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    2. I feel the exact same way. Long time lurker, first time poster. Very well put StPaulDude. We all have our pet theories as to what happened. The truth is that what exactly happened to Maura that night has eluded many great minds. There are a lot of well meaning people working hard to find answers. Renner is one of those people. What I'm curious about is why people here are so interested in this case. I know I am because I work as a counsellor for 16-24 year olds. I like to think I can understand the inner workings of people. Maura was an enigma even *before* she went missing. Can you imagine how complicated her life must have been? Just based on the stuff we *know*. That's why I always favoured any theory where she voluntarily ran away. These days I'm not so sure.

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    3. I guess the tandem theory is possible, but who follows someone that far behind? Maura wrecks, Butch comes by, the neighbors see her from their homes for a few minutes...I know she disappeared quickly from the witnesses point of view, but would you follow someone 5-10 minutes behind them? I wouldn't call that "tandem". Plus, the odds of a friend following her just far enough back to arrive on the scene without being seen, checking on her and her vehicle, then taking off is just too incredible for me. I would suspect someone driving in tandem would take their time to look Maura over for injury and see if the car could somehow be salvaged or moved back onto the rode to see if they could get it started. Like others have said, anything is possible. I certainly respect all views, but this one is just a little hard for me to swallow. Very interesting though.

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    4. @fromanotherstar — Another way of looking at the notion of "tandem" is that, perhaps, MM was planning to intersect that night with someone driving from a different location. (I'm not sure what JR's exact notion of "tandem" is, but I suspect we will find that out in the book.)

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    5. Or she was the one "following" and when she crashed the tandem car was in front of hers.

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    6. I think it makes zero sense for Butch Atwood to have lied. He would have had to have some foresight and be in cahoots with Maura in order for this scenario to make sense. Why would he not come forward and tell authorities there was another car there? He had no reason to believe this girl was going to disappear. None. He had no reason to lie. None. I think his reputation has been tarnished for zero reason. But, there's neither proof nor reason that he would not mention another car there, imo.

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    7. If car #2 was in front, Butch may have legitimately never seen it.

      It could have parked up the road and shut lights off after seeing the accident and/or Butch approaching, or maybe didn't notice the accident at all and didn't turn around for several minutes afterward.

      Either way, I don't see anyone suggesting that Butch "lied" about what he saw at the accident site. If he was fixated on the accident scene, he could easily have failed to notice a second car that was just barely within view.

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    8. When I go out and walk my dog at night, if there's snow on the ground (and particularly if the moon is out) I can see clear to the end of the road, about 1/2 mile away. I live in the country. No streetlights or sidewalks. But, I can certainly make out a car parked in the road. Or another person out walking a dog. Can I give a plate number or even a make or color? Not necessarily. But, just because it's night time does not mean it's pitch dark and you can't see anything in front of you. Yes, that can happen. But, with snow on the ground, there would be ambient lighting.

      That's not really the point that I question, though. If you were traveling in another car with someone (why for hours, anyone would do that is curious) and that other person spins out and smashes up their car, what would you do? Would you park up the street and turn the lights out? Would you take off? Or would you stop and make sure your friend is not dead?

      And if you were supposed to meet someone somewhere and that person didn't show, and subsequently went missing, wouldn't you tell someone at some point? Would you call the authorities or tell Fred, just to try to help these people solve the puzzle? I mean, after a certain length of time, would hiding MM's privacy at some point be unimportant?

      If I cared enough about someone to travel with them or meet them somewhere hours from their home, I'd want to help to find them. We can't just throw out theories without humanizing these unknown people. They would have feelings, just like the rest of us.

      (Let me be clear that I don't believe there was a tandem driver or some person waiting for her. She was a very private person in a highly stressful situation/time of life. I don't think she'd be sharing that with anyone.)

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    9. Just because someone "humanizes" people differently from the way you do does not mean they are not fully aware of the "human" aspect in a situation like this.

      I literally humanize people for a living, don't worry about me on that front.

      And to be clear, I also do not believe there was a tandem driver.(I also don't believe that Maura loaned her car to anyone). But I am not ironclad in that belief, and I think every possibility needs to be considered.

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    10. Jhonez, I am sorry if I did not make myself clear. I wasn't saying 'you' directly to you. I was trying to make a point to any 'you' who read my comment. Sometimes the theories in the commentary in this blog (Fred hit Vasi?) that I wonder if people actually think things through. And that worries me, because then sometimes they are later referred to as fact. So, I was just trying to get readers sort of think through a situation before posting a theory that may be discussed later as fact.

      But, maybe I shouldn't bother. People just believe what they want without regard for the facts, it seems.

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  6. Considering Maura wouldn't even use the Saturn for short distances, a friend of hers could have been behind the wheel for the Vasi hit. I will get Petrit and Maura together to relive that night. >>>tRinity=cLosure<<<

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    1. Pomkik, please quit trying to act like you know something. And typing in uppercase/ lowercase letters is just your way of trying to get attention. I may not agree with everything Renner has said or done, but people like you are sick.

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  7. Since Maura was working the night Vasi was hit, wouldn't she have a solid alibi?
    The consensus seems to be that Maura didn't have enough time to hit Vasi herself. If a friend hit Vasi with Maura's car and Maura had an alibi, why would she go through all this trouble to get rid of the car? I'm sure she would have been scrutinized by the police. I don't know Maura's state of mind, so that could explain a lot. I just can't imagine this extreme reaction to avoid police scrutiny.

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  8. I've created a Bittorrent Sync folder that contains documents and photos related to the MM case. This folder is available to everyone, and everyone has write-access. Please add documents, photos, or whatever else (as long as it's related to MM and/or the case) into this folder, and everyone else will immediately receive a copy.

    To get the folder on your machine, download Bittorrent Sync (http://www.bittorrent.com/sync) and use this secret key: AXSAIKP2FZ4TKKILGTGLCJKLV3F5QEUJG

    (FYI, I (bragi) am StPaulDude. That nickname was terrible and was originally used as part of a prank.)

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  9. Do we know where Fred was when PV was hit? Could Fred have been driving the Saturn, did the hit and run and called Maura, upsetting her at work? It would make sense that she would be more likely to protect her father than one of her friends. And she would obviously listen to him if he wanted her to get rid of the car.

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  10. Wait! She replied, "my sister...." when her supervisor asked her what was wrong after she got the phone call!!!!!

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    1. I think the "phone call" at work that made Maura breakdown was bogus and something Maura invented so that her "family emergency" email a few days later would carry more weight.

      I also think that is why she faked a state of catatonia and only mumbled "my sister." She wanted the whole thing to be as dramatic as possible so that no one would question her when they got the email on Monday about the family emergency.

      IMO, after going over this again and again, I can only conclude that the meltdown at work was a hoax on Maura's part and that whatever triggered Maura's urge to take off, happened before that weekend.

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    2. I agree, Rose. I don't buy the upsetting phone call bit at all.

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  11. Emily & mrsmcabee - very interesting scenarios! I could imagine her running away to protect a family member.

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  12. Just a random thought: Most people Maura's age grew up watching crime/legal dramas like Law & Order and CSI. Those shows always have someone "cutting a deal" by offering info on other more serious crimes to have their own potential punishment reduced or scrapped altogether. I know plenty of people much older than 21 who still believe this is routine procedure.

    Based on what we know about Maura's behavior leading up to her disappearance, she was stuck in a pretty desperate position. She has always struck me as impulsive, but also someone who could be very cold and calculating if she needed to protect herself. If a friend borrowed her car and hit Vasi, what would stop Maura from going to the police with info about her friend in an attempt to make her own credit card theft problems go away? Vehicular manslaughter is much more serious than stealing a few credit card numbers, and Maura would be able to hide her fraud from her family, friends and Billy, AND bolster her good girl image by "doing the right thing" and reporting her friend.

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  13. One thing to think about....if Maura was truly running away, which I believe she was, then most of the reasoning that considers consequences for her life at Umass or with family, etc. are irrelevant. Someone who reaches a point where they want to run away does not worry about loose ends or consequences in the life behind them. That would be like painting the deck of a sinking ship.Also, if someone is willing and planning on running away for good, it shows a certain degree of selfishness, a large degree of determination and fortitude, and an incredible amount of planning, not capriciousness.

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    1. I agree that Maura ran away, but I disagree that it takes "an incredible amount of planning." I am only basing that on examples of other people who took off. They really did not plan it all that much. I think they thought about it a lot, but in terms of planning, many of them just took off one day, and when they are later located, claim that they made their final decision just a day or two before leaving.

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    2. You bring up a good point. But as you mentioned, the people who didnt plan it were eventually found. To disappear for ten years without a trace is either the best case of dumb luck ever, or she had a carefully thought out and thorough plan :)

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    3. Well one I can think of off the top of my head was found seven years later and another twelve years later. Both those cases were "dumb luck." LE has no way to trace a person through their social security number, so anyone can disappear and get a legit job without being found. I think a lot of people on this board have a misconception as to how LE actually searches for people.

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    4. If I may point out: the significance of the packing of her room which the theory of her running away seems to rest on in most people's opinion, seems to indicate planning. It is paradoxical to say that the packing is proof she ran away and yet her running away in such a manner (leaving a packed room behind) is not indicative of planning. But in reality, it's an exercise in futility to discuss such matters because they do not change the "what's" of the situation. In investigating, usually a what comes first, then you work to establish a why. It is the same reason why putting someone on trial for murder, absent a confession, witnesses, and a body is ineffectual.

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    5. Of course the packed up room shows planning, but it does not show an "incredible amount of planning." (your words) You can pack up a dorm room in a couple of hours. Likely most people who take off think about it for a while, but in terms of "planning" most do what Maura did: they take a few items, some cash, and find some transportation to somewhere else. They ditch their phones, credit cards, etc. That's it.

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    6. I wasnt aware that's what Maura did...

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  14. It also could be that Maura left a lot of drama to just go to her happy town and think things over, just as it first looked. Let's say she was picked up by her father, sister, girlfriend, or mystery date. They safely check in under a fake name. It's been a long day....the two or three people relax around a fire, drinking liquor.

    Maura is exhausted. But also her adrenalin is racing after a traumatic crash and quick escape.

    She decides to go for a run, either that night or early in the morning, slipping out of her lodgings and leaving a note. She trips, or falls into a creek, or whatever. She's wet and/or just dazed. She may also have had a concussion. She dies.

    Her traveling buddy wakes up, reads the note, and relaxes over coffee waiting for her to return. But she doesn't.

    They frantically go out looking for her. No luck. Since this is a secret getaway they don't alert authorities. After looking for most of the day they go back home to establish an alibi.

    And then events go the way we know they did. That phone call Billy got? Could have been Maura slipping into hypothermia.

    Maura had secrets. Who's to say she didn't have two cell phones? In those days you got a new phone number every time you upgraded. Maybe she had an older phone that allowed emergency calls only and had it charged & ready to go in case she DID feel like slipping away to eat breakfast, walk, or even ski. And maybe she took that phone on her run to clear her head...

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    1. Billy's mother said the phone call came from a calling card, she'd have to be at a land line.(possible too) Maybe on a cordless after escaping momentarily. It was Feb., her with little or no garments trying for help. The fact that she didn't use that last call for 911 is compelling. Yet another scenario. But I believe her father was accounted for all his time. The car had her running gear and homework in it also. Keep um coming people! JS

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    3. Im sure the phone call to billy has been proven not to be Maura I read it was a red cross worker trying to reach Billy about him wanting to leave the military.

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  15. If Maura was running away to protect someone else, then why did she leave the "cheating email" from Billy printed out on top of her things? Was she really that awful of a person that she would skip town to protect a family member but have zero problem letting Billy spend the rest of his life thinking it was his fault? Seems very harsh to me. In fact none of that scenario makes any sense.

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  16. If there was(is) a "tandem" theory, and since even the TV show aired photo's of the Saturn, I would think that even the smallest epithelia's would have (should've) been noted on the front end. Also, if anybody with a hint of humanity nailed a pedestrian and didn't stop, I don't think the actions of that person would go unnoticed. The real problem is there was a travesty of "evidence retrieval", and there is so much speculation, that the original timeline has become warped. I find it odd that her Father said "Dirt bag" and the 8 year video used that term. The penciled picture shows a female with a black eye(right where her head it) I believe the creeps who did this were located, but who came up with the black eye? I ask because I have witnessed this injury for myself, and the person I know who hit a snow bank, got a black eye(left side) because she wasn't wearing her seat belt! Maura was 120 lb.s(unverified) A big guy could subdue a woman of her size no problem( just add a little booze) and she's gone. The scenario sickens me, but it's far less complicated. Keep the ideas flowing people, JS

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    1. I have to agree with most of this. I have always thought that MM simply wanted to get away for a week considering how hectic her life was at the time. A solo vacation. She got some money and some alcohol and set off. She started drinking on the way and ran off the road. Not wanting to get in trouble she tells the bus driver that she has already called AAA and then leaves the scene ASAP. Then I believe she either met with foul play, was killed by an accident or succumbed to the the elements. It's Ockham's razor. It really is the solution with the least assumptions and while a more complicated story may ultimately be correct in the absence of certainty the fewer assumptions that are made the better. I hope she is found but I think it's unlikely.

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    2. Again, I really must ask: has been your experience been that people generally pack up all their belongings before going on week-long vacation?

      Occam's razor tells me that when a person's belongings are all packed up, and there is a "cheating" email printed out and left on top of them, that the person who did that had every intention of making a permanent change. Under your theory, was Maura going to come back a week later, throw the email away, unpack all her stuff again, and just move on with her life?

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    3. Good point. Btw I have been around since last August but just remembered I had an old livejournal account and registered.

      Obviously that's what makes this case so fascinating...clue 1 postulates this, clue 2 postulates that.

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    4. Rose White: that is a good point. However, she couldn't have packed up all her belongings in a single Saturn sedan. My girlfriend packs half of her wardrobe for a weekend trip. As for the cheating email, I don't think this necessarily shows that that she was not planning on coming back. Maybe she thought she would be back before anyone else saw it. Or maybe she planned on taking it with her and forgot it. I'm just saying while it is possible that she decided to just take off and not come back I find it unlikely. Possible (I read a story recently about a mother who left with the clothes on her back with two strangers to move cross country) but unlikely. I try to put myself in her shoes. What would I do in her situation? Taking a week off from school and everything else is plausible. Get some money, clothes, alcohol and a vacation destination I'm familiar with and I'm good to go.

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    5. All of her belongings in her dorm were packed up. Her packed up belongings were of course not in her car. Yes it is possible that the email was left there by accident, but the packed up belongings show a very clear intent to me: that Maura had no intention of continuing on with her life the way it had been going. Now, could she have intended to return to Amherst after a week? Sure, that is possible. But, it seems quite clear that she had no intention of continuing to live in the dorms, and very likely was prepared to drop out of school.

      I will just say what the whole Maura Murray case says to me: Maura packed up her room and left the email because it was every intention of hers that someone else would eventually come into her room without her being there. She was not going to be there because she had the intention (at the time she left Amherst) of taking off for good or for a very long time.

      That does not mean that she was not kidnapped or that she did not simply die in an accident later. But I think as she left Amherst that day, she had the intent of getting everyone off her ass for a week so that she could get a nice head start. In fact I think that is why she took the accident forms with her: she was going to call her father that night and go over everything (and then probably tell him that she was really busy for the next few days).

      If you google map Maura's route from her dorm to the liquor, to the closest DMV (with about 10 minutes to get forms), then you will see there is an almost exact timeline.

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    6. I think she definitely intended to return back to her dorm room after a week. There is little evidence to the contrary. Whether she intended to drop out of school or move to who knows where after that is more probable to me then intending to dissapear when she did. Then again, Why would she have the accident forms if she had planned on permanently disappearing? Why would she care anymore?

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    7. I think the accident forms were so that she could call her father about them that night (as planned). She needed the forms so that she could go over the details with him (i.e. vin number on car, etc). I think that way her father would not come "looking" for her for a few days.

      But I do not see how anyone could say that Maura "definitely" intended to return after a week when she left her room in condition to be moved out of. With the addition of the email printed out and on top of her packed up belongings, it seems like a clear sign to me to her friends and family: here is my stuff all packed up so you can just move it out, and here is the thing showing how wronged I have been and how sick I am of all this crap.

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  17. Disappeared was shot in 2010? And I'm sure they check out the things people say before a show is aired. And the "phone call to Billy" was in there and they even got a stock shot of an airline check through and put it in. So I am giving that a could be.

    I think it's fair to say Maura had no idea whether she'd be back or not. She made an effort to cover her bases, anyway.

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  18. Let's suppose that she did not get abducted or runaway.

    What if RF did see MM running on the county roads, she had too much to drink, and was trying to stay away from police. If she was out running in the middle of the night on a dark road she could have been hit by a motorist. Rather than be put in jail for manslaughter the driver could have easily hid her body somewhere in the woods. Who knows why a person would do that, but it happens.

    Thoughts?

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  19. That's been discussed on here before, and IMO its absolutely a possibility.

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    1. jhonez - So would it be possible to research front end damage work done on cars in that time frame or drop offs at junk yards?

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    2. Beats me. I guess maybe, but at this point I think it would be near impossible to tie any such damage even semi-conclusively back to Maura.

      I'm sure people hit deer and stuff in that area basically every day.

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  20. Speculative scenario only:


    1. Saturn borrowed by friend.

    2. Saturn hits Vasi.

    3. Friend immediately swears MM to silence by threatening to convincingly reveal MM to police as driver.

    4. Friend gets out of work 2am Sunday, meets MM.

    5. MM agrees to meet friend Sunday or Monday.

    6. Friend kills MM Sunday or Monday in MA.

    7. Friend leaves Saturn, for whatever reason, in NH.

    8. Investigators, family, and general public believe MM was with Saturn at WB curve and either perished in woods or was kidnapped.


    **************


    This scenario has the advantage of explaining the presence of a vaguely identifiable female with the Saturn at the WB curve.

    However, the unknown driver (undri) would have to have trusted that Maura wouldn't say anything to anyone between the time she told Maura that Vasi was hit and at some point Sunday or Monday.

    If the undri was not with Maura very much of that time, especially when Maura was with her father, that's a long time to hope Maura keeps her mouth shut or doesn't inadvertently raise any suspicions.

    While there may be variations on this scenario that render it more likely, it still needs, obviously, to be supported by real facts.

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    2. It would seem - but perhaps not - that the undri theory also needs to be reconciled with the fact that Ruddock inexplicably allowed Maura to leave the Corolla crash unarrested. Ruddock would never have let her go unless requested by someone else. And that's a very short list.

      Was Maura driving the Corolla while undri was driving the Saturn? Did undri know Ruddock?

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    3. It's my understanding that Butch Atwood positively identified the driver as Maura Murray. Murder is a pretty far fetched scenario.

      Not to mention the fact that people keep inferring that MM hit Vasi. In early reports, even Vasi said he could not confirm that he was not thrown or did not jump out of a moving vehicle. We are assuming that he was struck by a car, but even the authorities aren't 100% sure.

      And, one other thing. How many times have you just lent out your car? And if you did, who was it to? A casual acquaintance? No. I don't lend out my car (especially in college when gas and money were rare commodities) and if I did, it would be to one of maybe 3 people I knew. People just don't share cars. And if she was in the market for a new one, it would be less likely she'd lend it out, imo. She'd need not take the chance that some fool friend would damage it.

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    4. Atwood talked, in the dark, very briefly, to a young white female of average height and weight wearing a dark jacket and jeans. He had never seen her before, even in a photograph. This is not a reliable identification. It is a vague description of thousands of females within three hours of Haverhill.

      If Maura's appearance included any relatively unique and obvious feature, such as a facial injury or medical device, it would have been listed in the missing person flyers distributed all over the area.

      Because Maura has vanished for ten years, the pairing of Maura and the Saturn at WB curve looses its normal indicative value. We are not talking about a woman who drove her car to a nearby town and dallied for a day or two, prompting a search.

      True, the Saturn's presence at the WB curve is a good indication that Maura, too, was there, but it's not sufficient to rely on if you want to turn every stone in an effort to find her.

      We are talking about a woman who has disappeared for ten years now and may have been killed. That's the full context that must be used in evaluating whether or not the presence of the Saturn at the WB curve reliably implies Maura's presence there, too.

      Therefore, it is not adequately certain that the woman to whom Atwood spoke was Maura Murray. Likely? Yes. Sufficient to rely on under the circumstances? No.

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    5. I don't see anything beyond pure speculation that puts another driver in that Saturn. The police believe she was in it. Fred thinks she was in it. Atwood spoke with someone who everyone but a few in the comments section that thinks it was her.

      Let's remember that the police/sheriff would not have wasted assets looking for a girl in the woods if they had reason to believe she was with someone. And how would they know that? Email. Phone records. They obviously looked through those. And Billy's mom said they even called all of the people she called. (I don't believe there was a second phone. There's nothing but speculation about that. And if she couldn't afford a primary phone, why get a second?)

      I just feel like the speculation is just that. Until there's something compelling, my belief about what happened fits in with the facts that we know.

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    6. Hi..Im new here Mr.Alden I believe your scenario if that's not it..It maybe close to it..

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  21. Maura was captured on ATM video Monday afternoon so she was alive then and Maura also made calls from her cell phone late Monday. I just don't see the friend able to kill her and dispose of her in mass and then go get Mauras car and drive it to NH.

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    1. Far as I know, the public doesn't know who was on the tape, if there really was a tape, because no one has seen it.

      Actually, murder victims are neatly disposed of in Massachusetts just like any other state. Of course, the Saturn could have been left in or near Amherst, but the body damage might have attracted attention from local police, unlike it obviously did in NH, especially if it was ultimately destined for a salvage yard.

      If Maura was killed in MA and her car found in NH, I'd say the plan worked pretty well.

      All this is strictly hypothetical and probably has some flaws in it, but worth tossing around considering Maura's been gone 10 years.

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  22. With all due respect James, I think the likelihood that MM lent her car to someone is not good. How often do you lend out your car? I never have. Never. I doubt MM would either. By all accounts she was on a budget and about to sell the car. Why let someone use up her gas and possibly damage the car if she is going to sell it?

    But, even more, if someone did borrow her car and this someone did a hit and run, why wouldn't MM go to the authorities and turn said friend in? If someone I knew hit and nearly killed another human being, I would turn them in. But, that's why I wouldn't lend my car out in the first place. I just don't think it makes sense. And there's absolutely zero proof that she or her car was involved in that hit and run in any way.

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    1. It is worth considering that the person who actually borrowed the Saturn may have been able to more convincingly argue to police that Maura was away from the security desk at the time Vasi was hit. In fact, this may have been the threat used by the Saturn's real driver in order to leverage Maura's silence. This is an argument that, as noted earlier, certainly has its flaws, but it is, in my opinion, worth thinking through.

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    2. I loaned my car to friends regularly in college. Pretty sure it's common practice, at least among close friends.

      A couple years ago there was a hit-and-run on my car that involved some drunk dude that borrowed a car from a college girl he was kinda-sorta friends with to make a beer run.

      My car was parked at the time, and the guy was apparently so hammered he didn't even make it out of the parking lot of the apartment complex before he hit my car.

      Obviously this is a far cry from hitting a pedestrian, but these kids were so brazen they didn't even park the car outside the parking lot. I tracked them down within like 3 hours of discovering the damage.

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    2. Keep in mind that all the "mechanical issues" having to do with the car comes from Fred and no other source. We do know for a fact that her Maura made it on a three hour road trip seemingly without any issues. Surely it could have made it on a 15 minute trip.

      But I just do not see a private, reserved person loaning out her car. I am the same age as Maura and no one loaned their car in college. It was too irresponsible and most people's cars actually belonged to their parents.

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    3. Rose, that is a brilliant point (re: FM being the only person to have said that). I hadn't thought of that.

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    4. With Rose's fact as inspiration, I created a spreadsheet of facts about the case, and put it into the Bittorrent Sync folder for the case.

      It only has this one fact so far. Obviously there are a ton of easy ones that come to mind to fill in. Please feel free to add facts. Here's how the spreadsheet looks after adding this fact: https://www.dropbox.com/s/egx5sv6hnt7bd2r/Screenshot%202014-04-18%2011.11.15.png

      (As a reminder on using the Bittorrent Sync folder, just download the client from their site - bittorrent.com/sync - and enter this private key: AXSAIKP2FZ4TKKILGTGLCJKLV3F5QEUJG)

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    5. Personally I do not think that Maura's car was in that bad of shape. According to Fred, it was in such bad shape that it needed to be replaced entirely, yet it makes it on a three hour road trip in winter with no mechanical problems?

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    6. Agree with this 110% Rose. I Don't think there was much if anything wrong with the Saturn. I think it is pure fabrication on Fred's part to explain a) him carrying $4000 cash ad b) why Maura was driving his Toyota.

      I believe that if we can figure out a) why Fred was carrying the $4000 and b) why Maura was driving the Toyota, we will have a lot of the answers to this case.

      Disclaimer: I do believe there has been one other mention of Maura's "car trouble" - that is Sharon in the "Missing" documentary (or somewhere) explaining why she bought Maura the AAA membership. My explanation for this is that a) she added Maura to the family AAA plan out of a motherly instinct when she heard that Maura was driving back and forth to clinical by herself perhaps alone and perhaps late at night and b) by the time she was interviewed for the TV show, she had heard Fred's story about the car trouble so many times that over time she subconsciously wove it into her story about the AAA card

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    7. That is the problem with one source saying one thing: it gets repeated often enough until it is fact. I do not want to get too off topic, but I will use the Columbine case as an example. ONE person who did not really know those kids said that they were part of the "trench coat mafia." It was not true of course, but then everyone started saying it. Then is became a "fact."

      As far as I can tell, we have no other source that Maura's car was in that bad of shape other than what Fred said. He has consistently lied and so I do not believe most of what he says. BTW, on the disappeared doc he says, "I went up there to buy Maura another car, YOU KNOW?" Adding "you know" after something is a sign of deception. He was not up there for that purpose, of that I am convinced.

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    8. I couldn't agree more that the car thing is a ruse. The problem now is it is so ingrained as a "fact" of the case.

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  24. Alden, aren't you the douche that made the creepy videos? Or are you an imposter?

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  25. I'd like to share a tidbit I came across yesterday in another (unrelated to Maura) forum. I have been following this case since 2004; at the time I lived in Caledonia Co., Vermont about twenty miles from Woodsville.

    I was reading a thread about people who had used their own car keys to unlock other cars of the same make and model, i.e. you park your 1997 green Honda Civic sedan right next to an identical 1997 green Honda Civic sedan, then come back to your car only to unlock and start the "twin", then realize in a panic you've just tried to drive away in a car that is not your own.

    It was pointed out in this thread that Saturns, particularly mid-90's sedans, were quite notorious for this flaw. In other words, could someone with a similar Saturn have stolen (or accidentally "borrowed") Maura's Saturn with their own key?

    I don't know if this is of any interest to anyone but I was reading that thread and saw that bit about Saturns and my first thought was "Maura!"

    Thanks.

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  26. So what someone "accidently" takes off in a Saturn that ironically belongs to a girl that comes up missing the same day? I can't go with that one.

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  27. My thoughts turned more toward someone having taken it intentionally, perhaps the night Petrit was struck. More than anything, it was just a piece of information about Saturns that I thought might be pertinent in the grand scheme of things. But thanks for the helpful comment.

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    1. I didn't mean to come off snarky in my comment Glowing Orange. I apologize if I did. That wasn't my intention at all.

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  28. I try to hold back on endless speculation but I do feel strongly about my assumtion on how Maura's dissapearence may have occured. I believe she was very skilled at hiding her emotions and actions and I also believe she had a skewed relationship towards men. I think she was hiding a second relationship with a slightly abusive and manipulative man from mostly everyone and also hiding her relationship to Billy from this man. I believe this web of lies stressed her out and made her want to leave Amherst, but not permanently leave her life. I assume the mistery man found out about Billy and called her at work, he was furious with her and threatend to tell everyone about her secrets. This left her terrified and crying...but she couldn't admit t o what was going on. In an attempt to salvage this relationship, she tried to visit him after the party but crashed the car and then claimed she was on route to her dad. She talked him into meeting him in the mountains, desperate to fix this relationship. He ended up booking a room for both of them. Maura was drinking in the car to calm her nerves. After she crashed on R112, she was eager to leave the scene for three reasons; to not be found out by anyone, to get cell phone reception to call the dude and to not get a dui. She left the scene and jogged until she got some reception, then she called the guy and had him pick her up. They were drinking together got into a fight because of the accident, because of Billy and whatever else and he ended up accidentally killing her. Hen then disposed of her body and kept his mouth shut. I believe there was a second cell phone involved, which he may have paid for. Who knows maybe he hit Vasi...but I do still believe that accident isn't connected.

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    1. This other man that you think Maura was seeing, are you referring to her track coach that she supposedly had an affair with or some totally different man?

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  30. Suzanne brings up some interesting things to think about. I too just don't see any that links the crash to the disappearance of Murray.

    I will be the first to admit that when I learned of this story. I certainly did not think Maura Murray walked away to start a new life.

    I believed her disappearance to be due to some kind of criminal act.

    I thought it seemed very plausible someone grabbed her along the road.

    Having said that, after I began to separate the facts from fiction Maura Murray certainly had reasons to disappear herself of her own free will.

    What drives me back toward criminal act is the fact she did lead very interesting relationships with men.

    I believe that the call that she received that made her so very distraught is -directly- related to her disappearance. I also believe the relationship with the track coach shows that she was capable of having secret relationships with others.

    Why become upset over a mystery conversation... drop everything... lie to others about your plans... Book a cabin in the woods... get booze for more than one..??? Why do that? Does it sound like someone wanted to patch up a secret relationship? Sure does to me.

    Now after that Suzanne your free to speculate. Criminal act? Did they just decide to run away from their lives and try to start a "happily ever after"?

    And that is where I am on this now.

    We've had Mr. Renner put out information to find her. So far there is no confirmation any sightings were her.



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    1. KTSA - Perhaps she had a secret affair with a professor, got pregnant, and was crushed when he called her at work to tell her he would not be leaving his wife, but he invites her for a weekend in the mountains that they both are familiar with.
      she buys booze to help win him back, but her wreck was just proof that she was a total mess and he decided to get rid of the problem once and for all.

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  31. As many young women, Maure seemed to be involved with men who shared her interrests and also mentored/inspired her in some way (I believe Billy was in some sort of superior position to her at West Point and she may have also been linked to her track coach) Due to her nursing studies this may have been a young physician (for example). It would also make sense that he lived near Haverhill. I am sure she met and knew plenty of people in New Hampshire from all her stays there throughout her life...the last visit being a few weeks before she went missing.

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  32. Thing is Maura's features are SO generic! I don't doubt that many people honestly believe that they have encountered her.

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    1. Wow. This seems to make some sense...

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    2. Now you are just ridiculous :)

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  34. I reckon that's Crazy Jim Renner posting as someone else...

    such utter nonsense

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    1. You have diarrhea of the mouth, friend. The evidence is that practically everywhere are little spurted turds with your name on it. Perhaps you should move on down the road and find something you can actually contribute to.

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  36. seriously, the sane posters here are few and far between. Nothing to do with family, she died that night. Very sad, but it's all over. No-one will ever be charged, nor will she ever be found. These ridiculous market/gym/flashmob sightings serve as desperate straw grabs only.

    And where is Jim justifying his "I know where you went and I know who took you there" obsessive nonsense

    get a life Jim

    your obsession is absurd

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    1. and to that Jim, you've been asked multiple times on here to back up your "I know where you went and I know who took you there" statement, and your silence is deafening

      any answer Jim?

      or just another post about some Vasi bullshit or isp adresses on some other website?

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    3. I think that is unfair to Renner and you come off as sounding bitter. I personally do not believe that Maura managed to run away and start a new life, I'm just not that optimistic, but I would love if it did in fact turn out to be the truth. Because the basic truth is no one here knows what happened to Maura that night. And you calling Renner out on his theory while maintaining that Maura died that night just makes you a complete hypocrite. It actually makes you an ignorant hypocrite as you provide no evidence, proof or explanation while at least Renner is working the case. Also when you post with such venom it makes me wonder what vested interest you have in the case?

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    4. You spend a lot of time on here for someone who has already made up their mind.

      You have a personal vendetta against JR and he should delete all your nonsense. You don't deserve a voice.

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  38. I let the actual Bianca Pickett know that someone is using her identity to post things here.

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  39. Feel free to contact the real Bianca Pickett and let her know her identity is being abused:

    https://plus.google.com/105139091509700599644/posts

    https://twitter.com/iaavsb

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  40. here is her bio :

    http://www.biancapickett.com/

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    1. umm, my name actually is Bianca Pickett - why would I pretend to be some unknown Melbourne, Australia consultant just to post on here, you freak?

      You show yourself to be a complete nutjob chefsgirl, as do you bragi. jjholy is enough of a nutjob to suggest that "replys like this actually keep me thinking their (sic) might be a posse of protection keeping her in hiding"

      good lord


      somewhat coincidentally though, I am in Sydney, Australia. Jim's probably tracked my ip address though, perhaps he thinks Maura's moved to Oz, and he's gonna "need some feet on the ground" over here soon, so you guys pls get ready. Better run some newspaper ads too...who wants to donate?

      I know you're all obsessed, and I know you all want her to be hiding in Canada or somewhere. I'd love that too

      It's not the case though of course, and deep down you all know she's gone

      Also still waiting for Jim to substantiate his "I know where you went and I know who you went with" claim.

      Jim's silence whenever he's asked this is deafening

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    2. i assure you i am not the original author of " Maura Murray is not a missing person", and i am positive i did not invent the riding in tandem theory. Your conviction she is gone is disturbing. Nobody knows what happened to her. If the slightest , i mean slightest possibility exist she could be alive , if it was your loved one , why not let a community of thinking minds help. Whats the harm in hope ? Keep in mind also that the email " maura murray is not a missing person " has been looked at by many thinkng minds and examined by many and found to be fairly well written, it seems to be in correct tense and still can not be 100% dis credited. Using words like Nut Job and what not does not do you credit in a community of bloggers only trying to help. Come on your better than that. This is a missing girl who has relatives and family.

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    1. jjholy - I like your thoughts on route 112. If she struck out renting a cabin perhaps she made contact with someone else and got directions to meet or to a cabin.
      I do have to say that she could have taken a ride from a stranger. I remember college days and both girls and guys make the most senseless decisions on a regular basis, but I don't think she got picked up by a stranger.

      Didn't she directly tell him she made a call and had someone coming to pick her up, like AAA? I think that is her saying "Yes someone is coming for me" but she was not going to tell him who it was.

      Let's replay the scenario if she had just wrecked and didn't have someone coming for her. With Butch asking that question, being cold she might have went with him. yes, she could have just bolted, but where to and to what end? She had to know the car would get towed.

      At this moment I am liking the third-party theory, or tandem driver if you wish, I think the statement to Butch was an admission that someone was coming for her.

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    2. I only added the part about the real Bianca Pickett because otherwise it may be tempting to take the bait that folks like that put out their and jump on the hamster wheel with them. It took me two seconds to google her name and come up with that so I too agree that expending too much energy on tracking down imposters is a waste of time. That being said, to comment on your post jjholy, I agree on your theory if I understand you correctly, and would like to add that her running awya with someone else and hiding out with Butch Atwood are not mutually exclusive ideas. She could have done both and Butch Atwood, only realizing in hindsight that it implicated him in a disappearance, could have just never owned up to that. Lie detector tests are based on cardiac activity in response to emotionally charged questions. They establish a base line based on control questions, or benign questions about address, gender etc. They are not infalliable and can be quite unreliable when you consider that everyone's response to stimuli differs. Psychopaths can pass them with flying colors because they experience no emotions. Not saying BA was a psychopath, just saying, they arent the holy grail of law enforcement investigations. So anyways jjholy, I like your ideas, I concur, and I think perhaps BA was more involved than he let on. From a psychological standpoint, it is not uncommon for people who are involved in a crime or a trauma to distance themselves physically from the scene of the drama that unfolded. Could be why Butch moved. And I know, I know, it's speculation as someone will undoubtedly point out :) But there is a difference between speculating the CAUSE of facts you already have, and speculating on events that you have no proof happened :) My two cents for today!

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  42. My few reasons for believing that MM did not get picked up by a 'local dirtbag', and I could be totally wrong.

    - Her statement to BA was that she had called AAA and someone was on the way. I believe that was an admission that she had someone on their was to pick her up.

    - BA said that he knew there was no cell service in the area, but she could have gotten a bar or two and made a call.

    - If affable ol' BA could not get MM to accept a ride, why would the mythical dirt bag be able to lure her?

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    1. Dirt bags don't always look like dirt bags. Ted Bundy was an extremely attractive, clean cut "All American" type and many women willingly went with him because of that image.

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    2. and Ted Bundy acted like he was handicapped and needed help to his car. Once there, he would abduct the girls. Predators prey on our sympathy, which psychopaths view as a weakness. most people would not willingly get into the car of a stranger if it was simply for a ride. I think we would all rather walk than die. But most of us dont think twice about helping people who appear disadvantaged. Once of the reasons i always say we only see what people want us to see! if we remember this, we dont trust our eyes, which is unfortunate, but the side effect is not getting swindled or victimized. Just a side point to add to your comment on Ted Bundy :)

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    3. I know most people would not willingly get into a strangers car, Maura however was not only potentially intoxicated she was very desperate to avoid Police at all costs (we know this from her words with Atwood). I don't think it unlikely that Maura might well have flagged down the first car she saw in an effort to get out of the area as quickly as possible. Its either that or she is in the woods/mountains still. I personally find the sighting of the red truck that many wish to discredit credible due to the female witness claims - it puts a very suspicious vehicle in the area at possibly the exact time.

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    4. I always try to listen carefully. Some things you mention combined with the facts we know about this case have me scratching my head yet again.
      Sure I originally theorized she was the victim of a criminal act.
      Next, I was persuaded to believe she did disappear of her own free will and was alive.
      Now, I have to admit. As I've studies the outcomes of hundreds of missing persons cases I can say it is perfectly plausible that whatever news devastated her prior to her disappearance in such a way as a witness or witnesses had to help her to her car that -suicide- can't be discredited. Maybe the accident changed those plans. Instead of getting to the cabin to drink the liquor and carry it out. She crashed while drinking and never got the chance to explore the wilderness she was going to (Without Peril). She knew she was facing EVEN more problems at that moment in time. She wouldn't have needed a tow truck. She simply fast forwarded her initial plan and began walking into the wilderness -there-. As far into it an as deep into as she could so she'd never be found.
      (OK, go to it. Tear that theory down.)

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    5. It is ok to have any opinion that you wish to have- There is no right or wrong cause nobody really knows the answers ( so we think). Th issue is that some posters like to slam people for their opinions cause they differ from theirs and there is a bunch of people that will try and jump all over you.These people think that cause they have been posting for a long time that no body else can say how they feel or post an opinion and that is just wrong.

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  43. I don't know if she is alive or not. I thought about this case today and did not realize that her birthday was last week. If she is out there, I wish she would let someone know. Hundreds of hours are spent on cases every year where the person walked away on their own and did not want anyone to know where they were. I am not saying this is what I think she did. I am saying if she is out there please don't take valuable time away that could be used to look for someone who is truly missing if you are alive...

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  44. I'm not sure. I believe different things on different days. Sometimes I post a specific scenario to see what holes will be poked in it.
    Most of them end up dead, but not all. Some are people that lead emotionally troubled lives and just seem to blink out of existence to be discovered much, much later. There have been some of those cases highlighted here in older topics.
    This seems to be an enduring mystery because of the voluminous variables and clues that have yet to yield anything.

    Someone call the Finder and get him to take the case.

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  45. There are so many possibilities, that it is hard to say for sure what happened to her. It is quite possible that she just simply got into the car accident, and the elements and exposure finally got the best of her. I know initially this seems silly as the area has been search, even with dogs. But all I can say is stuff like this happens. Human remains of missing people have been found even in areas that have been searched, because for one reason or another, the remains escaped detection. Let's face it: there is a lot of area and a human body is very minute compared to the size of in a "local" area.

    Then it is quite possible that she met foul play. That someone picked her up, she told that person she did not want to go the police, and that person either killed her or took her where she needed to be to disappear.

    And it is also quite possible that this was a staged disappearance. From reading the events that took place prior to her disappearance, it sure does seem like things aren't adding up. She lied about going away for a couple of days. This could be so that no one would think to look for her or think she was missing so that she could have a good head-start in her disappearance as no one would think anything strange for at least a week. Also, the strange phone call she received... I wonder if the police ever looked up records on who it was she spoke to. Either way, it could have something to do with her disappearance. Also, the fact that she did not want the police involved tells me that she really didn't want to be found. She would have done everything she could to avoid being found, at least initially. We can speculate why this was, but either way, she didn't want to be found.

    My guess based on the way she was acting, and the way she could have given herself a week's head-start, I think she disappeared on her own will. That doesn't mean she didn't meet her demise between now and then, because, let's face it, a lot can happen in 10 years. But, I feel that enough evidence seems to suggest that she was hiding something. Something she may not even have wanted close friends to know, like perhaps a secret bf.

    A possibility is that she was following someone, possibly a secret boyfriend, and she wrecked her car. And perhaps her bf told her that she needed to walk a ways to not be seen getting into his vehicle. So maybe she walked for a few miles to not be around any witnesses, meet up with him, and they drove off together. I'm not sure, but that is a possibility. Of course, there are a lot of possibilities.

    Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any sightings over her after this day though.

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  47. Sometime,s the explanation lies in what is most obvious and what things can be left out because they were fabricated and we have assumed them to be true all along (like MM's father coming up to buy her a new car). What is most obvious is that someone was injured in a hit and run. MM is upset that same night. She speaks to her father. Her father withdraws money (uses the excuse of buying her a new car to cover for the withdrawel of money and it's very telling he uses the excuse of her car for the money) and heads up to Amherst to see her. She takes off in her car North to a place her and her father were familiar with, car is found "damaged" some or all of the damage may have been from the hit and run, she dissapears. Seems obvious to me, she did the hit and run. Her father came to the"rescue" with money and some shoddy plan for her dissapear to avoid going to jail. She didn't drive her car the night her father came because it was damaged and hidden until she took off in it. The accident Maura has in her father's car may be a coincidence or may have been to cover something up or even to test something. Their plan wasn't fullproof, it was something thrown together at the spur of the moment in desperation with a lot of improvising, I'm sure. It ended up being convoluted enough and dumb enough to stump a lot of people for a lot of years. You wouldn't dissapear to protect a friend, you would do it to protect yourself and a parent would help their child to protect them.

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  48. Considering this theory, what if the phone call Maura supposedly received had to do with this, and perhaps her being seriously shaken/upset was because this situation was just too much, given everthing she wqas already facing and her already fragile emotional state? That would explain a lot. Is there any concrete proof that she was driving in tandem with someone. I realize there is some circumstantial evidence to this effect. And while I hold she ran away and started a new life, IF something happened to her, I serously doubt it was just random. But if there was someone with her who felt they had a lot to lose, or who was perhaps angry with Maura... maybe even causing the acident that night in order to make Maura look unstable and at fault. What if this person did something to her... or what if they were such a threat it sent her overboard and she put her plans for flight into immediate action? And what about the idea of another missing person within a few hundred miles of Haverhill? Could she have run away with someone else? It's pretty easy to run off and hide when you have the support of someone who is willing to help and protect you.

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