Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The ATM Video

Maura Murray disappeared 11 years ago. One important piece of evidence is the video from the ATM machine where Maura supposedly emptied her bank account the day she vanished in the White Mountains. But police have never released that footage and many readers wonder why.

I recently spoke to a member of law enforcement who has seen the ATM video. I asked him if it was definitely Maura in the video. His response: "We believe it was Maura in the video."

Now, I hate to be nit-picky, but that answer is less than definitive to me. There's wiggle room. There's subjective determination in that statement, I think. How do you know for sure? How grainy was the footage?

It's a point of interest because Maura had a close friend and a sister who looked similar to her.

It likely was Maura, though. After all, she needed her personal pin to access the account. There probably is no mystery here.

But if there is no question about it, in the minds of investigators, why not release this footage?


38 comments:

  1. I don't find it odd that they don't release the video to the general public because there probably is little benefit to them for doing so. The thing that I find strange is why LE doesn't show the family the video in order to confirm it is Maura.

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    1. Maybe it also shows a person of interest so can't release it

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  2. I think that if it was to take place now it would have been released. One that comes to mind is the girl named mickey who was missing and they released her riding her bicycle (i believe to taco bell?) Nowadays they almost always release the footage. I'm not sure why they wouldn't release it now. Unless she looks as if she is under duress or if someone else is in the video with her maybe? It seems as if the PD is exacting in their ways because they know they botched/mishandled the investigation from the start.

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    1. Except they didn't botch the investigation. They had a one car accident with an absent driver. A common occurrence and they handled it like most PD's handle it today still. They had absolutely nothing to indicate that there was a reason to elevate this incident to a missing person case. Hindsight is 20/20, and yeah now it looks a little different, but not much. There's still no evidence a crime took place. It is not LE's responsibility to find wayward adults.

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    4. @ Bill H.--Right on. There was nothing remarkable about the accident scene. It looked like the driver had been drinking, crashed the car, and fled. No police officer in a rural Northern New England is going to look at a scene like that and conclude that it is necessary to mount an immediate, aggressive search for the driver, regardless of the season. People drink and drive, crash their cars, and hitch rides with friends or random passers-by. They think that, by avoiding contact with the police immediately after the crash, they will avoid drunk driving charges.

      Sure, the crash investigation might've been a little more detailed had she crashed in an urban area. But she didn't. She crashed in a rural part of Northern NH, basically out in the woods. Up here, when an officer finds an abandoned car crashed into a snowbank with wine on the windshield, it's hard to fault him or her for deducing that the accident scene is nothing more than what it appears to be.

      In short, I do not find anything odd or unusual about the initial crash scene investigation. I am, however, perplexed and frustrated at how little information the authorities have released concerning their investigation into Maura's disappearance once it became apparent that she was actually missing.

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  3. James,

    Did the officer describe the footage or confirm she was alone in the video? Was the parking lot visible outside the atm? Can they see into her vehicle at all from the vantage point of the camera?

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  4. I believe I read she may have had a black eye in the atm video. Thus the reason for withholding the imagery, so as to differentiate credible sightings from false pertaining to the time around her disappearance.

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    1. I don't believe the "black eye" has ever been corroborated. I can only find speculation in reference to it. It's an inspired insight, though, and worth thinking about.

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  5. I have often wondered if it is a possibility that Maura was carjacked early on in the evening. Maybe the perp was hiding in the back somehow, or was armed and instructing her to drive. This may have been why she embarked, or why she wrecked, or why she fled on foot, or maybe he took her hostage on foot fleeing the police.

    Remember the witness early on claiming to see a man smoking in the car?

    It would be really something if this ATM video revealed even a hint. It was also be something if her college friends revealed any hint at all.


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  6. I wonder if the video shows something incriminating. Like Maura with a black eye. There has been speculation that Fred injured her that night at the motel. Or she was injured in the first car accident. The police might not want to explain this possible injury so they don't release the video.

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  7. Here is why they should release it, I have stressed this a million times:

    All these photos of Maura everywhere look nothing like Maura. They are all teeth... posed portrait head shots. Her arrest mugshot is the only chance of someone out there recognizing her alive somewhere. Seriously guys, she looks like a different person when not grinning huge.

    See for yourself:
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B7_atAFvowRhcy1kTnEzbXRCUDg/view

    I think she's alive out there, unrecognized. Simple as that. She is probably flabbergast at how no ones found her, for this very reason.

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    1. This is a very good point. That photo creeps me out though.

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  11. That is something you should have asked the law enforcement member. That said, I do know that sometimes police don't disclose all evidence to the public in hopes that someone may end up incriminating themselves.

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  12. Perhaps the blogged question is best suited for the actual investigators in the case instead of members of the public not directly associated with the police investigation. Maybe that's the intent of the post and I've just missed that fact.

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  14. I agree why not release it? If it is grainy couldn't they get someone to inhance it. Technology has come along way since 2004. By them saying We believe it was Maura in the video, it makes me wonder if there is no video. They believe its her because a pin had to be used to withdraw the money.
    How long did the footage stay on the ATM 's in 2004?
    Did he say why they won't release it?
    Was there footage from the liquor store? If there was and the police have it, why didnt they release that one either?

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  15. If she did have a black eye, then wouldn't that have been mentioned in the interviews with the people that saw her post-crash? There's no way it could have healed by then.

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  18. Could it be the ATM video from the Butsons sighting? The cashier did say she told her supervisor, who said she told a policeman. The video from Butsons would of been from the ATM. The cashier said Butsons didn't have cameras but the ATM did which pointed down the alcohol isle. The same isle that she believed she saw Maura and two friends on an hour before the wreck.

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    1. I'm sure, very positive that would've been taped over by now.

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    2. I'm saying, Could this be the ATM video the police have? The cashier said she told her supervisor which then her supervisor said she told a police officer. Perhaps the police did know about this sighting by the cashier of Maura and two friends at Butsons and that's the ATM video they have.

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  19. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYVjkyLdID4

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  23. I would be more curious to see the ATM footage from the withdrawals from her dad's account.

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  24. I've been following this case for years from the sidelines and I am of a "succumbed to the elements" train of thought. But until tonight I never gave much thought as to whether the pictures of the cutesy, perpetually-grinning girl accurately portrayed this missing person. I was persuaded by one of the comments above to google her mugshot and I was blown away! That is not the Maura Murray I've been picturing all these years. Not at all. I get that the mugshot is, for one thing a mugshot, and for another not the most flattering picture but if THAT IS WHAT MAURA LOOKED LIKE WHEN SHE DISAPPEARED, then who one earth cares? That should be the photo published on missing persons handouts and flashing on screen in news segments. Has anyone ever looked into just how old all those commonly used pictures really were at the time of her disappearance? I'm a few years younger than Maura, and can certainly be a bit shallow when it comes to pictures: "don't you dare post that on Facebook, I look gross!" BUT, I am confident that, were I to go missing, my parents/loved ones wouldn't sit there and go: "this isn't a cute picture," "this portrays her in a bad light"...they'd say: "let's publish every possible recent photo, from every possible angle." This definitely gave me something to think about.

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  25. I think her age and the odd circumstances indicate a psychotic break on her part. Maybe her memory is completely lost.

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  26. http://mauramurray.blogspot.com/2012/02/does-mauras-cousin-know-true-story-of.html posted 2012
    physical violence (the writer's words) maybe the video did show a black eye. maybe the video could identify other people as well. WHY WHY WHY were the video(s) of the ATM & The liquor Store never released??? answer: cause there's sumthin' on them LE doesnt want ya to know. Why else?

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  27. I may be wrong, but I'm under the impression that the authorities are treating this as a criminal investigation, rather than a missing persons case. I've read every post up until this one, and I seem to recall having seen that somewhere, possibly a previous entry. In any event, if I'm right then that explains why they're not releasing it. After all, in kidnapping and/or murder cases, isn't it standard operating procedure for them to keep some evidence from the public to weed out false confessions?

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  28. I'm as interested in seeing this as anyone, but the reason they haven't released it or allowed the family to see it is clear and stated above by TheMJWarren.

    It's standard in any case for LE to withhold something, usually something directly tied to the incident or close enough to it that they can use to filter a true statement/confession from a false one.

    There very well is probably nothing at all on that tape that's interesting to us, but there's probably something unique. Maybe a hat/scarf/jacket/something else that's unique and identifying. They hold onto this, so when some internet wizard with mental issues walks in somewhere and confesses, they can test the confession by seeing if that person has knowledge of that unique fact that they wouldn't know if they weren't involved.

    It's too bad, my curiosity wants to see the video.

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