A new look at one of the North Country's Coldest Cases
Just finished listening to this podcast and it was really good. It had a lot of good information.Why hasn't anyone really spoke about the phone call to Billy between 12:07 and 12:14. Maura hitting Vasi fits into the puzzle of events that happened. Most people if they had hit someone and ran would be in a catonic state. If she did hit Vasi, then she was probably in shock. Which would explain her looking right past her supervisor as she spoke to her. Perhaps the phone call isn't spoken of because Billy was respected and in the Army who attended West Point. The police knew about this call but said it was the call from Kathleen .when it wasn't. Why? It would explain Fred coming to town with all that cash. It was made out that Vasi wasn't hit near where Maura was but in reality it was very close to her. It would explain all the silence and secrecy. If Maura was heading there to commit suicide then perhaps the wreck was her attempt and when it didn't work she realized when Butch came upon her she would be in Big trouble and left out on foot. Just a thought on the rag in the tailpipe. When Fred found out Maura wrecked his car maybe they got into an argument and perhaps Maura said I'll just kill myself,Fred replies stick a rag in your tailpipe not realizing Maura would do it.I could also see Fred telling Maura to stick a rag in the tailpipe because it would stall her and help her wreck. Or it was a sign to let whoever know the plan was in motion.It is strange she had Tylenol pm in her car. Once again its explained away by she had knee problems and taking it to sleep. How far did the police search that night for footprints. If it was two days later than they might not be there anymore . Was Maura suppose to slip out of town for awhile until they figured it out but she made a plan of her own. To disappear, just start over. Her friends and family knew why she left but not where she went. If there was a tandem driver they knew where they left her but not where she was heading. I wonder if Maura is alive and after the disappeared show aired she reached out and told them to quit looking , so they did. And that's why they are no longer looking. I think a lot of the information from the early days of her disappearance could point in the right direction. A lot of times someone's first account of something is right. No one has spoken with them yet making them doubt what they saw or heard. Maura has a Major breakdown at work but two days later everything's fine and she's " partying it up". Wouldn't Maura of took the Tylenol pm with her if she was using it to help herself commit suicide. What made Fred change his mind from "suicide" to dirtbag within a couple of weeks. Was it he wanted the attention in that area so Maura could get away , thinking shed reach out to him but when she didn't he changed it so the police would look elsewhere and nor just in the woods
"I could also see Fred telling Maura to stick a rag in the tailpipe because it would stall her and help her wreck." Why on earth would Fred help his daughter to wreck her car? That makes absolutely no sense.
To cover something up perhaps. If the accident was staged then they wouldnt want it to look that way , it would need to look legit. Stalling a car is a pretty good way to wreck.If this is the case. , then I think the rag was suppose to be taken out before leaving the scene. It makes no sense for Fred to tell Maura to stick a rag in the tailpipe to stop it from smoking either. So you have to try to make sense of this "rag in the tailpipe " and what the purpose of it is.
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I believe that a friend borrowing Maura's saturn hit Petrit Vasi while she was working, and they thought he was dead or going to die. I think they drove in tandem to the mountains hoping to ditch the saturn (the evidence) far away and report it stolen back at campus, but when she crashed, the plan backfired. I think the tandem driver picked up Maura fleeing on foot, and killed her."Two can keep a secret if one of them is dead."
Maybe Kate Markopoulos or Sarah Alfieri borrowed Maura's car and hit Vasi? Those two have been suspicious since day one and are STILL not talking a decade later. And Kate disappeared off the map for a couple days the same time Maura went missing. I'd be interested in knowing where Kate and Sarah were the night of Vasi's accident. Somebody could ask them but I'm sure they'd say they "don't remember"....just like when they told police they "couldn't remember" who was at their own alleged party just 48 hours earlier.
I appreciate the intensive investigation done by that person and don't discount his theories, as no one truly knows, but I don't see suicide. Factors against would be:Attempts to find lodging that she may have found for all we know. Why bother with a room if you're just going to a mountain to kill yourself. Her alcohol selections were obviously based on taste and not just a lethal amount. She would have just gone for a huge volume of vodka if that were the goal. Books she brought were for school and recreation. Important even if others think not. I believe she brought running gear. Again why bother if your going to kill yourself. Also, she made excuses that allowed her to return. Why bother with any of it if the end is near? No suicide note. Not that it's required, but no attempts to say goodbye to those she cared for. Seems more likely that she enjoyed the area she had recently visited and wanted to go to that area perhaps. But who can say?
I agree with you both. Just some food for thought: suicide notes are far less common than literature and film would have us believe.
If Maura committed suicide, they would have found skeletal remains by now. Deceased people cannot carefully conceal their own remains from being found for over a decade.
Lodging -- I think Maura was planning on staying the night somewhere close to her chosen hiking trail. She left her campus late in the afternoon (knowing she would arrive to the white mountains at night.I don't think she wanted to hike at dark.I think, had she not wrecked, she very likely would've crafted some form of a suicide note, and at the first hint of day-break, she would've left the note in her car with the rest of her things, locked the car and left the car in a place it would be found rather easily.Besides packing very few clothes, Maura packed a blanket as well.I believe she would've found a spot off-trail, burrowed herself to block the winds (which can easily reach over 100 mph at any given time in the White Mountains) drank alcohol and taken Tylenol PM and would've gone out as peacefully as possible while capturing her last view of earth in her favorite place in the world, the White Mountains.The school books she brought, really amounted to one large nursing reference book and a Mosby's pharmacology drug reference guide and a blank notebook. IMO, it was family spin (when they were confronted about Maura being suicidal) to suggest Maura was keeping up with her studies.Maura did have the book "Not Without Peril" with her which is a book about dying in the White Mountains.The chapter she had book-marked was about a fellow Massachusetts resident who pushed himself past the point of no return and was found dead of hypothermia on a trail. This person (Macdonald Barr) wasn't found until the following day after a major storm had hit. The folks that found him expected to come across a pretty gruesome scene, but instead he was found with his arms folded across his chest looking straight up at the sky with his eyes wide-open and he was described as someone who looked very peaceful and composed.Maura made excuses (not because she was worried about teachers or work supervisors) Maura was worried about her father. If Fred got wind that Maura had bolted school, IMO, the first place he would've suggested they go look for his daughter would've been the white mountains. Fred had told all his kids that the day he felt worthless/hopeless, that he would go grab a bottle of Jack Daniels and head for the mountains and they would find him there.The running gear, I have no clue about. But it's not unusual for someone to keep tennis shoes and even workout clothes in their car.The wreck obviously changed plans and it is my personal opinion that Maura only accelerated the plans of whatever she was up in the white mountains for.Clint Harting
Clint-- Good post. The possible sequence of events you've presented makes a lot of sense given the limited facts we know.
Clint, how do you know this about the chapter she book-marked. Is this a confirmed fact?Also how do you know about her having a blank notebook?
Through research, it was determined that she had that particular chapter book-marked (see Maribeth Conway articles on the case).Through a photo I have obtained online, you can see the blank notebook, meaning a notebook with white sheets of paper, not necessarily meaning that the whole notebook was blank.
I agree regarding consulting a psychic. It has been ten years, and no leads have panned out. Regardless of whether you believe in psychics, all of us are here on this blog anonymous or not for the same reason- a burning desire to see this case solved because human beings don't just evaporate like Maura did.The documentary / podcast guys did consult a psychic, and from the documentary previews, she states three things: A truck, Maura's sister Kathleen, and Franconia Notch.
What do Maura Murray, Brianna Maitland and Amy Bradley have in common?- All 3 vanished at night, after being alone at desolate locations.- All 3 went missing from areas bordering the edge of the USA or outside of the USA. (VT, NH and Caribbean)- All 3 were small framed brunette females in their late teens - early twenties.- All 3 have had controversial sightings reported at locations suggestive of prostitution (Maura at a casino, Brianna at Casino, Amy on escort website + the cruise ship element.)I am not saying the same person is responsible for all 3 disappearances. I am saying what if there is a bigger network at play here? Did any other girls go missing from this part of the country during this time frame? Pertaining to Maura and Brianna, I am curious about the human trafficking statistics around 2004 in New England or Canada, specifically VT and NH. These two girls, already with reported involvement in drugs and illegal activity, may have entered the wrong ring of people one way or another and been transported into Canada against their will.
Courtney King--missing from Pelham, NH.January 9, 2004—17 years oldMaura Murray--last seen on Rt 112 in Haverhill, NH.February 9, 2004—21 years oldBrianna Maitland--missing from Montgomery, VT.March 19, 2004—17 years oldJessica Ann Capille--missing from Bethlehem, NH.December 8, 2004—15 years oldAmanda Gingras--missing from North Sandwich, NH.August 6, 2005—17 years oldAmanda Bien--missing from Newton, NH.September 24, 2005—16 years old
Thank you, Anonymous, for posting the list above. It's a common misconception that abductions/disappearances don't happen in Northern New England. My gut feeling has always been that she hitched a ride with the wrong person, or knocked on the wrong person's door.
The trip was to ditch the Saturn and disappear, but the crash messed up the plan so they just abandoned it and booked it to Canada.
I also think she could be using her social security number. I remember reading on this blog that someone said they worked at a bank and at times when they were bored they'd look up people and once they looked up Maura and an account came back as active. They said for an account to be active, activity had to be done on the account within 30 or 60 days. (Can't recall exactly if its 30 or 60 ) It'd be interesting if someone ran her social, to see if there's been any activity I agree there's a possibility she is reading this, and she does have the right to leave. At this point she wouldn't have to admit to hitting Vasi if she did because 1. The police didn't investigate too hard2. Time has elapsed she wouldn't get in trouble I think she could of been running from some people in her life and possibly a hit and run. If Maura is out there and alive I wish she would come out and let everyone know so people can stop looking and put there time into another case. Her actions before she disappeared clearly shows she was Leaving . You don't have your stuff packed in boxes, art off the wall, letter on boxes about Boyfriend and cheating , withdraw money from ATM, buy alcohol ( I believe same kind she drank before), dad shows up 2 days prior with 4000 cash , Kate MIA several days after disappearance, in a catonic state at work 3 days prior, mapquest directions (although I believe they were to throw the investigation off ) if your not running away. Isn't it hard to hit your head with an airbag going off? Most wouldn't blame her , she was doing what she felt she should do. I'm sure a lot of people have dreamed of a different start to life, do we act on it No , but possibly Maura had the courage to start over.
Has anyone ever looked at Petrit Vasi's life at the time of his accident? Did he know Maura? Did he live in Kennedy or Melville? Was she upset that night because she heard about his accident and they were friendly or dating?When did Fred Murray arrive in Amherst for the weekend? Vasi's accident was late Thursday/early Friday. Could Fred have been the hit and run driver? Was Maura's accident in Fred's car a cover for this?Maura's supervisor reported that Maura would only say "my sister" when asked what was wrong. What if Maura's sister was the driver who hit Vasi? If any member of the Murray family hit Petrit Vasi, that could perhaps explain the $4000 (emergency car repairs? getaway money?) and the subsequent car accidents (to hide evidence?)Just my rambling ideas!
On the $4K, I'm just throwing it out there, I was in a car accident that resulted in very similar damage, at about the same time (I think it was in January 04 but may have been 05). The cost was $3,300. My truck was a '99 Chevy so a bit newer/nicer, but it was pure body damage so that wouldn't mean that much (and I also didn't have a busted windshield)... but in any case, it's definitely in the ballpark.What was the date she intended to see Dane Cook in CT? 2/12? I can't remember when that was sent, but she may have intended to keep that itinerary even despite the Vasi accident. Check it: send off the email clearing you from a week of school, bomb up north on 2/9 (monday), fix your car and chill for a couple days (either alone or with whoever), 3K for repairs and the rest for the fucked cylinder and/or lodging. Onward to CT and Dane Cook with a fully functional ride if the car's done in time, otherwise no worries, you still got plenty of time to get back by the following monday.I could be wrong on the Dane Cook timing, and if so that might throw a wrench in all of this, but if I'm correct on that I feel like that's a pretty close approximation to what the original "plan" was prior to the accident. And it's very possible that Maura was intending to duck that week of school to go see her friends in CT regardless of the Vasi hit. Like everything else though, it unfortunately says nothing of what transpired after the accident. On that I have no idea.
Her email to Liz Drewniak said Dane Cook was playing in Storrs, Connecticut (probably the UConn campus) on Feb. 12th. That's just 42 miles from UMass. But I have no idea when she sent the email. I paused the screen cap of the email from the Disappeared episode but it only shows a small portion.
What if something happened to Maura before the crash & it was somebody else that crashed her car to cover it up?only butch Identified her but what if one of her friends passed as her? Young pretty slim dark haired girl....could have been anyone!Also why did Fred mention £4000? He could have said he was in area with her looking for cars.i just think it's strange he mentioned it unless there was a good reason for doing so.
This is kind of random, but my husband went to UMass Amherst when Maura was a student ('05 grad), and he has told me that there were a lot of hit and runs on campus during this time because students would jaywalk all the time. I told him that I thought this was CRAZY. I went to BU where all four years I never knew of anyone being the victim of a hit and run, and I can't imagine the campus of UMass was more traveled than Commonwealth Ave. Anyway, it made me wonder a bit so wanted to share.
Maybe hit and runs were just less news-worthy at BU, being that UMass is in a small town and BU is smack in the middle of Boston. I mean, you probably didn't hear much about non-students getting hit by cars within a 5-mile radius either, right?Unrelated, but I was super close to going to BU, I feel good about my choice not to in retrospect (I stayed much closer to home) but it still to this day occasionally pops into mind how dope that would have been. I'm from the PNW so Boston in general is like a foreign land to me haha it is mysterious and compelling.
Did your husband know any of Mauras friends at Umass?
Just a thought: Perhaps Maura was heading up there to commit suicide but the wreck changed those plans. When she wrecked she changed her mind and decided she didnt want to do this and either1.Ran on foot ( did the country store have a payphone ) if so she used it to call Kathleen or Kate to come get her. She could of called them from her Red Cross calling card. They picked her Up and took her somewhere. Did the police ever go to her cousins house that lived not to far from the crash? (Not sure exactly how far away it was) 2. She ran, caught a ride,( they stayed silent or dont realize she's missing ) and she phoned Kate or Kathleen to pick her up 3. Found a vacant cabin or house( broke in) used there phone to call someone to pick her upWhat if the suicide and running away theories are both correct.
Butch at first said it wasn't Maura but then said it was. Another witness said on the 911 call that she could see a man smoking . Wonder if the driver wasn't Maura but Kathleen. And her ex- husband is the one who picked her up . While Maura was heading somewhere else with Kate. Wasn't it said that Fred use to have a red truck a couple years prior. What kind of vehicle did Fred have before he got his new car? ( the one Maura wrecked)
Maura was on the phone with Billy between 12:07-12:14. She works security at the dorms. Did anyone see her between her speaking with Kathleen at 10:00 and her phone call to Billy? Did she check anyone into the building during that time? Maybe they could tell how she was acting before 12:00 am. Maura leaves the day the story ran in the college newspaper about Petrit Vasi. Is it just a coincedance or was she afraid someone saw her or she could be identified as the driver. Did Maura know Petrit Vasi? The phone call to Billy is never talked about, maura bolted the day the story ran in the newspaper, it was downplayed how close she was to his accident , dad swoops into town with 4,000 cash for a New car, Kate and Sara silent, Sara says don't want to get my friend in trouble in Seventeen article, its a lot of coincendances and silence regarding that period of timeframe. I think maura hit Vasi, panicked and fled somewhere. Didn't Fred say Maura didn't know that perticular route. When it looks like they possibly traveled that route and drove right past the crash site in Oct. 2003. To hike And climb. Only 4 months earlier. She had driving directions to Burlington area and a notecard. Which is off Route 112. Why did Fred downplay knowing that area? Was the scene made to look like suicide? I think Fred changed his mind because he was told the " real story". If she was running you would want them looking for a dead person and not someone Alive.Why didnt Fred ever mention the sighting of Maura and two friends? Could it be he didn't want the police to get the video or he Didn't want more witnesses coming forward? What better way to disappear ,having people search for you in the wrong area. It was made out that an investigation wasn't done that night but really there was a lot of people out searching. In my opinion if maura was on the road on foot, one of the searchers would of heard or seen something.
"AnonymousAugust 28, 2015 at 8:38 AMIf Maura committed suicide, they would have found skeletal remains by now. Deceased people cannot carefully conceal their own remains from being found for over a decade."Simply not true. Just look into Bradyn Fuksa. He was missing since 2009. His last known location was found but he was missing. There were even eye witnesses sightings of him and people had claimed to have interacted with him. Well it turned out those people were full of crap. Because Bradyn's remains were discovered a couple of months ago not far from where his car was found. It turned out he committed suicide by a self-inflicted gun shot. The hand gun was even found with his remains. So, it's definitely within the realm of possibility that Maura committed suicide and just hasn't been found for whatever reason. Anyone who says it's impossible has either not followed many missing persons cases (because this happens more often than one would think) or you simply don't want to believe she committed suicide.
Yeah, the whole "there is a good chance she is alive because nobody has ever found a body" line is, in my opinion, an oversimplification. Maura disappeared during the middle of winter in a sparsely populated, heavily forested area which has a healthy population of bears and coyotes. And, to top it off, there is a river nearby. For miles in all directions the landscape of Northern New England is, in general, similarly rural. If she committed suicide, or was abducted by someone who disposed of the body, it is not at all surprising that a body has never been found. People who have not spent time in Northern NH fail to realize just how thick the woods are up here.
"Maura disappeared during the middle of winter in a sparsely populated, heavily forested area which has a healthy population of bears and coyotes. And, to top it off, there is a river nearby. For miles in all directions the landscape of Northern New England is, in general, similarly rural. If she committed suicide, or was abducted by someone who disposed of the body, it is not at all surprising that a body has never been found."This is a very realistic reason for why her body has not been found, if indeed she has committed suicide or succumbed to the elements, or was murdered and dumped (although a murderer could also be a lot more careful).I've said on a different post that one of the intriguing things about Maura's case is that virtually every scenario seems almost equally plausible or implausible.I have to say though, that no one has has really put forward a convincing argument why suicide/succumb to elements/abducted should be ruled out. Let's look at the most common arguments:1. If Maura committed suicide, or succumbed to the elements, her body would've been found.Then again, as you've already mentioned, the NH is heavily forested and there are animals that could scavenge on her body. And the example I gave of Bradyn is also enough to demonstrate that someone can commit suicide very close to their last known location, and still not be found.2. If Maura was abducted then someone would've seen as she was near houses.Not really. First, this is after 7pm in February, which means it would be dark. It would be hard to tell what was going on. Not to mention that most people don't just stare out their front window all day. Something significant could be happening within view of my living room window right now and I wouldn't have a clue. Because I'm not in my living room and even if I were, my curtains are closed at night.3. "The chance argument" i.e. what are the chances that Maura would just so happen to be abducted in such a short time frame, within 20 minutes or so.Well, these types of arguments are really silly, because we could ask that same question virtually every time an abduction happens. And yes, plenty of abductions happen quickly. I remember reading about a case (I forgot who, I'd have to look it up again) of a girl who went grocery shopping and was walking home which was only a walk of a few minutes. Some friends spotted her and spoke to her briefly. But then she disappeared and became a missing person. But it turned out, within a few minutes of her friends spotting her, another car had driven on that street and they did not see the girl. So the girl had disappeared within a span of a few minutes. The case went unsolved for a while, until someone had confessed to abducting her and murdering her. He said he just saw her walking alone, and saw the opportunity. It wasn't planned or anything. It was just a moment of opportunity. If that could happen to this girl, then it could certainly happen to Maura or anyone else.My gut feeling is that Maura is deceased. I don't know whether she was the victim of foul play, committed suicide, or she simply died due to exposure to the harsh winter conditions. This would certainly explain why there has been no activity at all concerning her cell phone or bank accounts. However, I'm hoping, and would welcome it, if I were wrong on this. But something tells me this case will never be solved. Just as there are countless missing persons cases that never get solved. Unfortunately in my time of looking into missing persons cases, and even unsolved murders, it seems the majority go unsolved.
Maura bought alcohol before she left on the trip. It was a box of wine, vodka, Kaulua, and Baileys. The only alcohol that I heard of still in the car was the box of wine. Where was the rest of it? In the car? Was Maura known for drinking White Russians? Or, did someone else she knew drink them? Anyone know? It could clear things up. If she was making the trip with someone, it might be in his/her car. If it was still in her car, she was alone.