Friday, August 28, 2015

Last Call

A quick note on the process of publishing the book, True Crime Addict.

I'm currently reviewing notes from the copy editor and making some minor fixes and adjustments. Soon a final draft will be produced and it will essentially be "locked in." Then I can't really touch it as they craft the page layout and begin to produce copies for the May release.

So this is perhaps the last chance to add anything of merit.

I think back to my first months researching the case. I received a call from a man with a very deep voice who claimed to be the boyfriend of a woman who had knowledge about the case (a family member or friend of Maura Murray's). He said I was asking the right questions and that there was information that needed to come out. He promised to try to get his girlfriend to talk. But nothing ever came of it.

If you still have important information about Maura Murray that should be included in a book, please reach out to me.

Also worth noting is a common misconception about journalism. Some people believe that if they never gave consent to appear in a book, they cannot be included. This is simply not true. If you would like to have your say, in your own words, though, I'm still willing to include those statements.

I can be reached directly at jameswrenner@gmail.com.

49 comments:

  1. I have nothing to add to the book, unfortunately. But I will take this opportunity to request the book include as detailed a timeline as possible of all the events surrounding Maura's disappearance. I love timelines. ^_^ And the timeline that was on Wikipedia a number of years ago is what got me sucked into Maura's case in the first place.

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  2. The tandem driver was the older sister Kathleen or the friend Kate.

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  3. One thing I haven't seen mentioned much is that Maura has cousins around her age from the Thornton/Plymouth NH area - not very far from the crash. They still live in that area I believe.

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    1. Worth looking into. We should have heard about this by now.

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    1. I agree I think there's something to Maura leaving the necklace from Billy and the stuffed animal from her dad. I feel it was her way of saying I'm leaving you two behind, or I'm leaving because of you two. Unless she didn't have time to grab it but then she grabbed her alcohol, and bookbag.
      V-day was 5 days away from when she disappeared. Wonder if she thought Billy might propose to her.
      Perhaps her mother didn't appear and speak much because she didn't feel comfortable lieing, and maybe knew where Maura was so there was no need for her to speak.
      I think her mother didn't get sick until several years after Maura went missing. As I recall, she had a broke foot when Maura disappeared.
      Just saying if it was my child. Even if I couldn't physically search, I would still been there, trying to do whatever I could from the sidelines. A good reason why you wouldn't , you knew where she was. You don't want someone out there who can't tell and keep a lie.
      For instance, my dad can't tell a lie, if we were hiding something, he would be the last person I would want speaking. Especially on camera.


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  6. From your interview with the podcast, you mentioned that Billy Rausch was a stand-up guy. I was wondering if there was any information in regards to his phone call with Maura that night of her breakdown. This phone call is never mentioned. Also, any mention of his relationship with her. (Previous blogs, you said he was or had been cheating on her.) Is it mentioned what time Petri Vasi left his friends house, the night he was hit? Or if a time line had been established of when he was struck.?

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    1. These are great points Aries1 Cre, which I think need addressing. The phone call is noted here in Renner's blog somewhere in those section that deals with phone records, but if you mean that it was never mentioned by family partisans, including Sharon-Billy's mother-on the old Maura Murray site, then you are absolutely correct. Now if somehow said partisans were unaware of its existence then no harm no foul, but in any case those points you ask Renner to address about how Billy went from cheating boyfriend to stand-up guy are key.

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  7. Its like this case is a hallway and there is a locked room, that once opened, will reveal a whole set of circumstances that will explain everything.

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  8. James,

    I have enjoyed your blog and the opportunity to comment here as opposed to the crazy outlets elsewhere. Will you be letting posters know if they make it into the book? Will you be taking a general opinion on our involvement?

    Also, i hope that you have left enough room for an outcome that does not meet your best speculation. In that I mean I hope you do not get "Rick Bakered".

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  9. Does anyone here think its possible she was put into witness protection? Potentially to get away from a domestic abuser, hence the family not being made aware by law enforcement?

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    1. Yes I think its very possible. It wouldnt be talked about because she's in Witness Protection.
      Sometimes people have secrets and secrets nobody who knows you would believe. To Maura's family and friends she was this innocent All American Girl but really Maura had another side to her. Most likely her friends and family back home knew the All American Girl side, and college friends knew the other side of Maura. Like Kate and Sara
      It is odd Maura is asked to leave West Point because of stealing makeup and maybe alcohol but then goes to UMASS in the nursing program and is security for an art gallery and the dorms.
      Did Maura have the security jobs when she got to UMASS or did she get them after she arrived at UMASS?

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    3. No, because Witness Protection is only used if you witnessed something, and have to go to trial over it.
      From Wikipedia, it is used to "protect a threatened witness, before, during and after a trial."

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  11. James,

    Here is a suggestion, assuming imagery will be used somewhere in your book…

    Say Maura ran away and is living somewhere else. No one will EVER recognize her because every single missing persons photo of Maura has a giant, posed smile… She looks NOTHING like this when not smiling... her non arrest photo looks nothing like 99% of all photos publicized of her. She obviously had a habit of smiling in photos to be photogenic, but no one walks around in public with a posed portrait smile, so these photos considerably narrow chances of her being recognized by anyone…

    From the inception of treating this as a possible runaway case, everyone should have been using natural photos of her. Any chance of her being recognized is being sabotaged. The mugshot is the best bet and should be on all the posters.

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  12. 35 year-old New Hampshire man Nathaniel E. Kibb charged in abduction teen girl, held her for 9 months at his trailer. He is now facing 205 additional charges, according to two grand jury rulings. The girl was first speculated to be a runaway like Maura. This guy would have been mid 20’s in 2004, close to Maura’s age when she disappeared. If he offered a ride that night, could Maura have felt ok getting in his car?

    Not to get weird or whatever, but the psychic investigator Fred talked to back in 2004 said there were other victims and that Maura’s body was with another female who met the same fate...........

    Courtney King--missing from Pelham, NH.
    January 9, 2004—17 years old

    Maura Murray--last seen on Rt 112 in Haverhill, NH.
    February 9, 2004—21 years old

    Brianna Maitland--missing from Montgomery, VT.
    March 19, 2004—17 years old

    Jessica Ann Capille--missing from Bethlehem, NH.
    December 8, 2004—15 years old

    Amanda Gingras--missing from North Sandwich, NH.
    August 6, 2005—17 years old

    Amanda Bien--missing from Newton, NH.
    September 24, 2005—16 years old

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  13. Check out this creepy opinion letter Nathaniel Kibby wrote to the Conway Daily Sun in 2004, 6 months after Maura went missing. Route 112 will get you from Haverhill to Conway.

    http://www.conwaydailysun.com/opinion/letters/60933-nathaniel-kibby-10222004

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    1. What is so "creepy" about Kibby's op-ed regarding hunting and the Second Amendment? That has been posted on this blog in the past, and I see nothing in that that would connect Kibby to Maura.

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  14. More on Kibby... This is not this guys first time doing any of this. This guy NEEDS TO BE LOOKED INTO FOR THIS CASE.

    ...."Some of the details revealed yesterday include Kibby using an "anti-bark shock dog training collar" on his victim to keep her from making any noise while being held captive. Court papers also stated that at different times, Kibby taped the girl’s eyes shut, made her wear a motorcycle helmet on her head, zip tied her wrists and kept her mouth gagged. We also learned through court documents that Kibby Tasered his victim when he kidnapped her initially and threatened to shoot her if she ever tried to leave.

    He also employed a fake surveillance camera at his residence in order to make the teen believe she was always being watched, according to The Bangor Daily News. Court documents make it clear that the 15 year old was a victim of repeated and violent rapes."

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    1. Which comment are you responding to?

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    2. @Nancy K-- Yes, please elaborate. All the stuff that has come out about Kibby seems pretty plausible to me. Sure, he's innocent until proven guilty, but the impression I have is that the case against him is pretty strong.

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  16. A while back I tried to add a little info provided by my husband when I showed him the photos of the car, but I don't think the info was posted (technical?/did I break a site rule?).

    I mentioned my husband has an MBA, extensive insurance/automotive background, MVA collision experience and worked as an expert witness in court. We are from the NE Ohio area and he has been featured in The Cleveland Plain Dealer and the local news stations on subjects related to these areas.

    Anyway, he had quite a bit to say about the police report and the photos of the car. I wish I had saved all the info, but I do remember a few of the things he told me:

    First, the car would not function at all with a rag stuffed in the exhaust pipe. It would have been very black and the car could only travel a very short distance. The rag could not have been placed at the gas station as some have suggested. From the gas station to the accident scene, the distance exceeds the ability of the car to function.

    The car windshield was most likely cracked when the airbag deployed. The cracked windshield does not mean Maura possibly hit her head in the minor accident.

    Her car looks more damaged than it really was since the car is designed to take the impact in a crash.

    My husband was surprised by the lack of information provided in the police report. If I remember correctly, he felt there were a few key important details left out of the accident documentation. I think it had to do with rate of speed, skid marks, road conditions or something like that...

    The car did turn with the impact. She did not cut into the snow bank as one official at the scene suggested. The hood impact shows she hit a small tree about 6"-8" across. The damage is not due to cutting the corner and plowing through the snow.

    I am sorry I cannot provide better info at this time. My so called expert is not here right now to answer the same questions for the third time.

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    2. It's worth keeping in mind that the average initial crash scene investigation in Northern NH for a one car accident might not be as thorough as a similar investigation in a more urban area. Some people are (justifiably) quite suspicious of the opening stages of the police investigation. I, however, view it as the typical country-fried law enforcement familiar to those of us in northern New England . . . nothing more, and nothing less.

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    3. I have always maintained that the cracked windshield (broken from the inside) was due to the deployment of the airbag. You are correct as well that the MVA report is lacking in key details. I have noticed many inconsistencies and omissions from various police reports in connection with this case. Is LE in NE really this poorly performing?

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    4. I don't have any statistics on which to state an objective conclusion, but it seems that we have more than our share of unsolved cases up here. The Louise Chaput and Celina Cass murders are two of the better-known examples. Another poster also recently mentioned the Thomas Conrad case, which also remains unsolved. It looks like the recent homicide of David Oldham in Colebrook is headed in the same direction. Stuff that happens "north of the notches" is not big news in NH, at least not to the extent similar crimes are which occur in Manchester, Concord, or Nashua. We tend to forget just how many cases up here remain unsolved.

      That said, the old "hindsight is 20/20" line has some applicability to the opening stages of Maura's investigation. At the time Cecil Smith arrived at the scene of Maura's accident, he had no reason to believe anything unusual was afoot. He found a single car crashed into a snowbank near a sharp curve. There was evidence inside that the driver had been drinking. He had every reason to believe that what he was observing was routine, e.g., another wino who wrecked and hitched a ride somewhere while panicking after the crash. There was no immediately apparent evidence of a struggle, or severe injuries to the driver. Given those facts, it is not surprising that the initial investigation into the crash was not very detailed.

      In summary, it is hard for me to imagine that any officer who responded to a crash scene like the one involving Maura's vehicle would think that what he or she was observing was the opening stages of a long-term disappearance.

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  17. Besides Billy , Maura's roomate did Maura have any other friends at West Point?
    Was Sara and Kate Maura's only friends at UMASS?
    I think the picture of Maura when she got caught with credit card fraud is how she was looking at the time of her disappearance. Not like the pictures from high school, and West Point.
    Why didn't the family show more recent pictures of Maura? They didn't have one picture from Christmas break? This would of given everyone a much clearer picture of how Maura looked at the time of her disappearance .
    For example in the Briana Maitland case, the picture they released was from the day before she disappeared.

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  18. Arrest records in Canada are public record. Has anyone thought to do a criminal records search in Canada for Maura? Just saying she had expedited a pattern of misconduct and an acute lack of character. Someone like that doesn't stay off of law enforcement's radar for very long, especially when they're young.

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    1. i doubt Maura would keep her name, though.

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    1. "And i hope the state of NH releases the case file to anyone who wants to help or put fresh eyes on it. Why not at this point?"

      Agreed. At this point, keeping the public in the dark is egotistical, and more than a little irrational as well.

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  20. Were the police able to pull records from her dorm room phone? If she was speaking to somebody. This could be how she was talking to them without anyone knowing.
    Maura worked security at 2 places, so she would of interacted with many different people.
    I also would like to see the ATM video. I wonder if they haven't released it because
    1. They dont have it
    2. Its the video with her and 2 friends at the Butsons store (could this be why the police originally said " she ran away to start a new life, she can do that she's 21)
    3. There's something on it they don't want the public to see but What and Why
    Haven't seen another case before where they won't release video of the Missing person and the last known image of them.
    I to believe this case is solvable. It just takes One person to come forward with what they know, or 1 person recognizing her.
    I wish the police would let different people/ investigators look at there case with fresh eyes. Sometimes it takes " fresh eyes" to solve a case.



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  22. What do you guys think of this: Maura spoke to the Billy the night she disappeared, what if she told him that she was knocked up and he told her that he wanted nothing further to do with her, either because it was his kid or perhaps it wasn't his kid? That would explain why she lost her stuff and went on a drinking binge. That conversation I think sent her over the edge, she had snapped. Listen after that she shacked up with her other "guy friend" who may or may not have been the dad of the new baby. By the way, Billy may have been her first choice to take care of the kid because he had a stable job and family.

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