Wednesday, December 16, 2015

***UPDATE*** The Curious Case of Howard Godfrey


Well. You know where I stand with Maura's case. I believe she's alive and in hiding, somewhere. I think the window of opportunity for any sort of abduction to have happened is too small. But I'm going to share this story to see if it kicks up any new leads or connections.

Have you heard of Howard Godfrey?

Godfrey is a likely serial killer who got caught after he tried to kill and kidnap a woman in his Vermont home in 1996. He served about five years in prison for the crime. At the time, police collected Godfrey's DNA. Years later, the victim's mother in that case began to suspect Godfrey was guilty of other crimes and pushed police to run his DNA against other crimes. His DNA matched sperm collected in the 1991 cold case murder of Patricia Scoville, who was assaulted during a hike near Moss Glen Falls in Stowe, Vermont.

At the time of Maura Murray's disappearance, Godfrey was living in Kirby, Vermont, not too far from the location of Maura's accident. He had his own small business installing windows and doors and drove a white pickup truck.

So, what's the possible connection, other than location?

I was contacted yesterday by a woman who told me how Godfrey was living above her in-laws garage at the time he was arrested for Scoville's murder, in 2008. The police had to give a warrant and records pertaining to the search of the property to her family. The records note everything they took from Godfrey's apartment. Among the items listed was an old issue of The Caledonian Record. This woman then went to the archives to figure out what was interesting about that specific issue and discovered that, on that date, the top story in the newspaper was about the FBI joining the search for Maura Murray.

Godfrey died in prison - of natural causes.

Does anyone from Haverhill, Bath, Franconia remember this guy working in the area in 2004?

**UPDATE**
Lots of information coming in about this man, today.

Some new bits:
- Godfrey and his wife once owned a cleaning business called Stowe Dustbusters, which cleaned rental properties in Stowe for All Seasons Rentals. However, this was prior to his first conviction in 1996. At the time of Maura's disappearance he had his doors and windows business in Orleans, Vermont - but he also often did business in New Hampshire. He was living in Kirby.

- Godfrey was definitely not in prison from 2000 - 2005.

- The story about the newspaper probably checks out (and he had another copy of the same article in his truck) but the exact article is still not 100% clear (though I should have an answer on that soon.)

- According to a source close to the Scoville investigation, Godfrey has been looked at for links to both Maura's disappearance and Brianna Maitland. A trooper was assigned specifically to find any link between Maura and Godfrey early on (probably 2005/2006) but no clear link was found then and the trooper is reported to have said they "had a better suspect" for Maura.

- I would be interested to know if any one contracted with this guy for doors/windows in New Hampshire in 2004.

111 comments:

  1. WOW! THATS SCARY AND SEEMS POSSIBLE!

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  2. It is within the realm of possibility that he abducted Maura. Serial killers have a learning curve. They all do. By 2004, he could have honed his skills well enough to avoid detection; however, it's seems unlikely any hard evidence will turn up at this point. If some of her possessions (phone, driver's license, clothes, jewelry) turned up among his things...I'd say we're close to a resolution.

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  3. I've entertained a lot of different theories in this case, but i keep coming back to the fact that no offense, but the men investigating this case, don't know what it is like to walk through this world as a young woman. Not to be too dramatic (or hat on men because I love them), but it is a reality that we live with that many times within a day or a week you may feel like a man is looking at you like he wants to kill/rape/abduct or otherwise harm you. granted i was raised by very safety conscious people and I'm sure there are some women who never think this way, but i think most women who have ever been broken down on the side of a road at night in the dark alone, would agree that pending death or harm is in the back of their mind. Anyone who stops to help you is likely to be a man larger than you who may think he can getting away with doing whatever he wants to you. Even though most people are good, by and large, this is just something we live with. While I know a serial killer is illogical/ unlikely in any given situation, it only takes the right combination of factors . I think a planned voluntary disappearance and living in hiding is also illogical and this the mystery of this case - there is no logical explanation. I have always felt that Maura may have sent Butch away because she found him creepy and he was a very big guy too, right? She didn't want to call the cops because she had been drinking - simple. Anything is possible in this case but I just keep coming back to this gut feeling/ intuition from the beginning. Also, regarding "too short of a time frame for an abduction"...is there nay such thing? How long does it take? 30 seconds? Look a the case of amber simonds (the girl the Amber alerts are named after) or any other countless abduction cases where parents only turned their back for a moment....
    Interesting new possibility here. (Any chance he could have any tie to Brianna Maitland? Any possibility of the rag as some kind of calling card? (As I think it has ben established that Fred never said that he told her to put it there and that was erroneously reported...or no? )Keep up the good work!

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    1. Fred said he told her to put it there to stop the car from smoking

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    2. Yep. I kind of agree with some of your points about the woman's perspective on this disappearance. I've always thought Maura didn't trust Butch Atwood, but by the time she got in someone's else's car she wanted to get out of the snow...and was already second guessing herself about Butch. Telling herself to take the help in whatever way it comes.

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    3. As an adult, I would never accept a ride from a stranger, unless it was a police officer (and even then, I'd be wary). But as young, college-aged woman, I might have (and actually did naively put myself in some potentially dangerous situations--looking back, I was very lucky). I think I would have been somewhat inclined to trust a school bus driver because I would have thought he had to pass background checks (though all that means is s/he have never been caught breaking the law). But yes, I suspect the issue with Butch was that he indicated calling the police, and maybe his appearance was intimidating as well. In terms of people passing by, I probably would have felt safer accepting help from a woman or a car with more than one person. Someone in a company vehicle might appear "safe" as well. I realize there is no way to know who is trustworthy and who is not. I just could see myself thinking those things at that age and in that situation.

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    4. I don't think MM distrusted Butch. He was a fat guy driving a school bus! I just think she did not realize the situation immediately after the accident. When it donned on her that the car could not be moved and she had no phone reception, she probably went for help or accepted help from what turned out to be a "local dirtbag," maybe one who lived within sight. While it seems improbable that a local dirtbag would live within sight, it seems one in fact did who later produced a flimsy alibi for himself.

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    5. does the equation shift if you are drunk?

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    6. Miss Wind made a lot of good points. Young women have been targets of predatory men since the beginning of time. There is no window of opportunity that is too small because in part it could simply be a case of right place, right time...seeing a young stranded female on the side of the road and asking if she needs a ride. The exchange would take seconds and I doubt an intoxicated girl looking to avoid a DUI would do anything less than jump at an opportunity like that.

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    7. I thought clogging up a tailpipe would cause asphyxiation

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  4. Also, was that the only issue of the Caledonian record he had? Because that could be strong link...or maybe he was interested in something completely different in the paper, but seems odd

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  5. Pack rat or archivist? Significant find for an apartment with limited space. I'd say Godfrey kept it as reference or trophy. He could very well be our man.

    Of course, he's dead.

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  6. *oops i meant amber hagerman, not simonds*

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  7. This guy was still in prison in 2005 for the previous assault case of 1996.

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    1. doc.vermont.gov/offender-locator/

      says:

      Southern State Correctional Facility (SSCF)
      Book Date: 1997-01-20
      Release Date: 2013-12-24

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    2. Did he spend 16 'consecutive' years in prison? Were there periods of time when he was out? Was he living in Stowe at the time of Maura's disappearance?

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    3. something is not right here: "Godfrey was living above her in-laws garage at the time he was arrested for Scoville's murder, in 2008." How could he be living above someone in 2008 if he was in prison? Maybe it includes probation or parole time.

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    4. also in a story dated 2008 is the following:
      "Ultimately, a DNA sample taken from Godfrey before he was released from prison was matched with DNA evidence found on Scoville's body, leading authorities to charge him."
      Therefore, no matter what some website says, Godfrey was out of prison for his assault crime sometime before 2008.

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    5. based on other information provided, those years have to be the time he was tracked in the prison system in SOME capacity, not necessarily in prison itself. so must include probation/parole in those years. he wasn't locked up the whole time from 1997-2013.

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    6. 'Release' date is when his sentence was completed. If he were paroled in say 2000, he would have been required to fulfill the requirements of said parole until his sentence was complete, at which time he would be released from custody and the date recorded.

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  8. He have any tattoos?

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  9. Stowtoday.com
    "None led anywhere until 2005, when a DNA sample — taken from Godfrey because he was in prison for assaulting Kerin —was matched with DNA evidence found on Scoville’s body. Godfrey was arrested, 14 years after the killing."

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    1. This is unclear. They could mean they had his DNA from when he was in prison. Can we find a more definitive source? It would be great to rule him out.

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  10. via New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/07/nyregion/07DNA.html?_r=0
    In 2000, a DNA sample was collected from a prison inmate, Howard Godfrey, when he was paroled on a 1997 assault conviction. Because of a backlog in cataloging DNA samples, it was five more years before a forensic technician matched Mr. Godfrey’s sample to the scene of Miss Scoville’s killing. The authorities cross-checked his samples against cigarettes discarded by Mr. Godfrey, who was living in Vermont and working in construction in 2005, and he was arrested. (In published reports, Mr. Godfrey, 61, has said that he and Miss Scoville had consensual sex.)

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    1. I'm not saying there is a link here, and this is a huge leap to make, but the bit about the DNA on the cigarettes made me think of Faith Westman's claim there was a smoking man at the scene. Unlikely, I know, since no one reported seeing another vehicle, and I doubt there was some serial killer just lurking around in the woods just in case the perfect victim came along, but that is where my mind went when I first read this.

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  11. I thought you were now leaning to her being murdered. Changed your mind?

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  12. I re-tract I found this source that is much clearer as to dates etc...
    In 2000, a DNA sample was collected from a prison inmate, Howard Godfrey, when he was paroled on a 1997 assault conviction. Because of a backlog in cataloging DNA samples, it was five more years before a forensic technician matched Mr. Godfrey’s sample to the scene of Miss Scoville’s killing. The authorities cross-checked his samples against cigarettes discarded by Mr. Godfrey, who was living in Vermont and working in construction in 2005, and he was arrested.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/07/nyregion/07DNA.html?_r=0

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  13. Thanks jessica LOL
    I just posted the same article and then read your post.

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  14. "Kerin fought him off and got away. Godfrey eventually went to prison for that assault and upon leaving prison in 2000, he was required by law, thanks to Patricia’s parents and Act 160, to leave a DNA sample for the databank."

    This according to "Vermont Today".

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  15. Three comments to a 2009 post on the blog "Slam Dunks" dated 2010. That blog comments on the Brianna Maitland case. That disappearance is generally thought to have been perpetrated by several persons. Yet, there may be a Godfrey/MM connection there. Pay attention to the third comment by "Wondering":


    Anonymous said ...

    "I have often wondered where Howard Godfrey was that night. He was arrested in 2005 for the 1991 rape and murder of Patricia Scoville in Stowe, VT. Also, served time for a 1996 assault (with a gun). I am sure authorities must have considered him ..."

    July 13, 2010 at 4:25 PM


    BobKat said ...

    "Anonymous ... RE: Howard Godfrey ... the name itself I don't recall, but I know for a fact sexual predators were considered, and many interviewed. I personally wouldn't rule out a "stranger-abduction", but I feel strongly, based on my involvement helping the family, and research, that those involved in her disappearance were known to her.

 Perhaps a future post to explain why ..."

    July 16, 2010 at 9:13 AM


    Wondering said ...

    "I seem to remember it being reported that there had been an unknown man in the resturant the eve the Maitland girl disapeared, that had spoke to her. This was right after she had been missing. Never heard of this again. Godfrey I feel is a predator. My husband worked as a bouncer in the local bar. He had to escort workers home a couple of times, because Godfrey had made them so uncomfortable. My husband has known him all of his life. Godfrey was married to his aunt. These incidents happened after the Scoville murder. Why would he have an article about the girl in NH* a year old at the time of his arrest. The only newspaper it was reported that was in his apt.Raises alot of ?s for me."

    November 14, 2010 at 10:26 AM


    * A reference to the Maura Murray case? Seems near a 100% likelihood.

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  16. He once work at All Seasons Rentals Stowe VT
    http://www.stowetoday.com/stowereporter/archives/what-made-godfrey-a-killer/article_c23b25fe-5e78-5007-b7fc-fe8dbf03c3ba.html?mode=jqm

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    1. Wow. There's an off chance he crossed paths with Maura (and Fred) during their family hiking trips....a stranger in passing...who may have seemed vaguely familiar and thus harmless to Maura.

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    2. Did she call that number? If she did now that would be eerie. Still, can't figure out what she would have been doing in NH, unless he killed her in VT (remember the missing hour+ from her trip?) then he and a female accomplice drove tandem to that corner to junk her car far away. Timing would be tight, though. And the spot pretty random (and far from Stowe).

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  17. I think this is the guy, I think James Renner solved it. Damn. This sucks man. I really wanted Maura to be alive.

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    1. Except James still thinks Maura's alive and hiding out somewhere.

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    2. I dunno he was 67 years old in 2013 when he died of natural causes. In 2004 he would of been 58 years old and through in a prison diet in late 90s ; I'm skeptical; Can anyone verify his health , strength , stature and habits in 2004?. If Maura avoided Butch Atwood ( I don't care he was a large man ) he had a SCHOOL BUS. A warm school bus who was still in sight. A reasonable person would assume a school bus driver is ok. I think Mauras spidey senses would stay away from this creepo. But then again if he had a gun who knows. I really would like to know more about him in 2004.

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    3. Based on what? At this point, this is speculation at best. There is zero proof of Godfrey being at all involved in this disappearance and now nearly 12 years later good luck finding the evidence.

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    4. I think she ran from Butch because he was a witness to the accident and was calling the police. That doesn't mean she wouldn't have got in a car with someone once away from the scene, especially if she was cold and increasingly desperate..

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  18. Definetly a possibility, that should be looked into. Although, I still think Maura ran away to start a new life.
    Perhaps this person who contacted you, can see if there's anything on the list that the police removed that possibly link back to Maura. (Backpack, cellphone, etc)

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  19. When a serial killer is keeping tabs on FBI involvement in a case...well, that ain't a good sign to say the least.

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  20. I think Maura arrived at a rental this man was working at. I think he put the rag in her tailpipe, and followed her waiting for a stall out.

    I think he premeditated this one. I have goosebumps running down my arms.

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    1. I have always thought about that too. It didn't have to be at a rental necessarily - could have happened at a gas station , fast food restaurant , anywhere she stopped along the way.

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    2. I have always thought about that too. It didn't have to be at a rental necessarily - could have happened at a gas station , fast food restaurant , anywhere she stopped along the way.

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    3. He put her rag in her tailpipe? How does that work? He wanted to find a way to make her crash and he didn't know what to use so he broke into her trunk and grabbed her rag that her father recognized?

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    4. This is the only 'context' I've heard that makes sense for there being a rag in the tailpipe of Maura's car. And honestly, I wish it weren't. It reminds me of the Zodiac killer claiming to disable car engines by pulling off distributor cap...thus leaving the driver stranded & vulnerable.

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    5. So the latest podcast irritated me to death when John Smith said the police walked up to the Westmans, asked if they had seen Maura, then said there is a rag in the tail pipe, and John couldn't figure out why the police would tell them that. I was basically yelling at the computer. He answered his own question while explaining the situation.The reason is because to anyone looking the rag us a sign she is alright and or went for help. So they go to the nearest house and say "have you seen the driver?" They reply "no" to which the police say "okay, we just need to check because she placed a rag in the tailpipe." It's not that hard to imagine and the incompetence that comes across in the soliloquy about why the police would tell the Westmans about the rag is nauseating. If you can't figure out that simple detail, then why oh why do the podcast guys think he can solve anything else? I'm not trying to be mean I'm just flabbergasted that people are so caught up in this guy. It boggles the mind. Also, there is a difference in a patrol man and a detective. That's like saying you are a chef because you wait tables at a restaurant so by default or osmosis you now have a special skill you weren't trained for. End of rant.

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    6. Interesting to read a thought on the rag that I've not encountered before. Thanks for that. I've always gotten the impression it was jammed into the pipe rather securely, instead of hanging out so as to be conspicuous enough for signaling that the vehicle is disabled and the driver off seeking help. I've always seen flags used that way closed into the window of the car, too. I agreed here with John that Smith had no valid or responsible reason for mentioning it to someone other than an officer on the case. That is very strange, even suspicious, to me.

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  21. Very interesting to me that even with all we know about Maura's troubles (and the mystery of what led her to that road on that fateful night), police seem to almost uniformly treat this as a probable murder at the hands of a stranger.

    Sure, part of it is that's what they're trained to look for and counted on to investigate.... but the opinion seems to be so uniform across law enforcement, it makes you wonder if that's the real answer. Typically I'm in the "drunk, hiding deep in woods, died by exposure to the elements" camp).

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  22. Excuse my ignorance, but this rental place he worked is not connected to the condo she was calling on is it? Great catch James!

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  23. How did this guy kill his victims? was there a similar pattern? Where were the victims bodies found?

    Assuming he killed MM, this kind of info could give clues..

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  24. The police said they had a better suspect than this. Wow.

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  25. "A trooper was assigned specifically to find any link between Maura and Godfrey early on ..."

    I thought as much when JR's post went up. I figured we're about 7 years behind the cops. But, who knows?


    "I think this is the guy, I think James Renner solved it. Damn. This sucks man. I really wanted Maura to be alive."

    Premature, but I said as much above. If he did do it, he probably buried her similarly to Scoville, a few leaves on top close to a road. But no discovery of Maura has happened, so based on that alone, he may have not committed a crime here. But profiles don't figure a change in modus operandi ...

    No clothes, body, DNA, the case won't move forward. But this is an important development. A left turn, mind you, but something.

    Hey JR, I thought you were gonna break for a while? I know, I know ...

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  26. Just a question - Aren't search warrants pretty specific? Why would the authorities have been looking for an old newspaper referencing a different case? They might if they thought there were a connection, but I don't think a judge would approve a total fishing expedition. James, have you seen any of they original source documents? It could have been listed as something like "any evidence to connect to other crimes" or something like that (they did think he might be a serial killer) and they snagged the newspaper because MM is on the front. I guess my question is how search warrants work and what this one said. You often hear about "poison fruit" evidence so if they took the paper they would have had to have convinced a judge that there was a reasonable expectation that they could find evidence to connect to Maura.

    Or...I'm completely off the rails here! LOL

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    1. So long ago, I worked for the DA in another state, not New Hampshire. Good search warrants are specific. The way 'fruits of the poisonous tree' works is (I think) best described by example. Let's say my warrant says I can look for a thumb drive. I open a small desk drawer and find a bag of cocaine. The cocaine is good for me to take because I could reasonably suspect a flash drive might fit inside that desk drawer. Now let's say my warrant says I am looking for a rifle. I open the small drawer and find cocaine. Not OK because I couldn't suspect a rifle would fit into a small desk drawer. That cocaine is the 'fruits of the poisonous tree', in this case, a badly conducted search.

      There is also plain view. If I'm looking for that thumb drive and hey, look...a bag of cocaine on the sofa, that's good for me to arrest/charge on too because it's just laying right there. A cop doesn't have to ignore evidence of a crime that he can just see.

      So, they may have taken the newspapers because they were out in the open, or they saw them whilst searching for other things and whoever was searching knew of the MM case and thought the connection was close enough to take.

      Hope this helps.

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  27. Grab his prison daily log and behavior reports. I would interview every cell mate he ever had. Hes dead now anyway. A lot of times these guys tell their stories to eachother to get eachother off. Or to brag about their crimes to survive prison life. If he's dead anyway I'm sure they might talk.

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  28. Very very interesting he'd have an article about the Maura Murray investigation. Given that he's a known abductor/killer it would seem to point to him as a strong suspect, but I'd also take into account the possibility that he could have been interested in the details of the investigation (i.e. when does the FBI get called in) for "future reference" re: his own activities even if he had nothing to do with Maura's disappearance.

    So yes, there are other explanations, but this man needs to be looked at VERY very closely. The distance from Stowe (60+ miles, 90+ minutes driving on mostly back roads) is the one thing that gives me some pause.

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  29. The Brianna Case is interesting because her car was also wrecked into something right? Wasn't it found backed into a house? Hmm

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    1. Yes but Brianna didn't put her car there, it's a very shady story but I can tell you for a fact that Howard Godfrey had nothing to do with Brianna going missing.

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    2. Brianna's car was found backed into a house, but police saw an obvious sign of struggle, and other foot prints around her car.

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    3. And the cop did nothing that night and then at the end of his shift went on a 2 days off. When he came back to work he mentioned about finding Brianna's car backed into the old Dutchburn house with the door open, necklace on the ground, 2 paychecks on the front seat and signs of some type of weirdness. He through the stuff back in the car, took a couple notes and drove away.

      He was Brianna's chance of still being alive. WTF was this cop thinking?

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  30. #1 - I think it is quite plausible that the abduction window is larger than at first believed.

    #2 - with money coming to Maura in mere days, it is unlikely she was set to disappear, purposely, & permanently. Not to mention, she locked her car when she left it at the accident. If she had no intention of returning or retrieving it - why lock it?

    #3 - after a good discussion on whether it was in fact Maura driving, it is quite clear it was most likely her. As the driver would have had to not only have known about Maura having AAA, but also would have pulled her card out and left it in her car. So it seems more plausible it was Maura.

    Which leads us to a trip away for whatever reasons, an accidental car accident, she fled scene to avoid a DUI and was either given a ride by someone whom later killed her or succumbed to her injuries and it was hidden.

    With this bit, abduction could be possible. I would love to know more details about this guy and his movements for work. The timing would fit amazingly.

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    1. Re: #2 - I don't understand whatsoever why the money Fred was purportedly taking out for a car would be a reason to rule out her disappearing completely. Money is valued differently by different people, and whether or not you're going to stick around for it also depends on what you're trying to get away from. Since we have no clue what she might have been fleeing from, we can't say how the money would factor into her decision. If you have a big enough reason to completely abandon your old life, a few thousand dollars is probably not enough incentive to stick around.

      As for locking the car - I think too much is being made out of why. I'll tell you why - force of habit. I've locked myself both out of my house and my car before when I had no intention of doing so, and did not have my keys on me. Just like I flush the toilet without thinking when people are in the shower. It's all muscle memory. If you regularly lock your car when you get out, you are likely to do it out of habit without even giving it a second thought.

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    2. To your points MJ

      #1 I agree I think the stalking her from the liquor store theory is not discussed nearly enough. Someone could have easily been following her hoping to "get her" once she reached her destination.

      #2 I agree with the first part. Locking your car door though is in many cases simply force of habit.

      #3 Her not being the driver is my favorite theory however probably the least likely. But she may have kept her AAA card in her car all the time (Ive known people who leave their entire wallet in their car all the time)(losing your ID or wallet may be the first step in disappearing)and the person driving could have just lied to butch about calling AAA.


      This Godfrey guy should be discussed on the next podcast though. With John Smith or Renner or Clint, I'd like to hear all of their perspectives actually.

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    3. Totally agree with you on this one.

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    4. Totally agree with you on this one.

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    5. Antonia, I totally agree that more money coming to Maura is not, in and of itself, an indicator as to whether she disappeared on purpose and permanently.

      I merely make the point from a perspective of looking at a grouping of facts, what is most likely? That being the driving question and only the facts as we the public know them: my personal opinion is that it seems unlikely she would be planning to permanently leave on purpose, without the knowledge or assistance of her friends and family. Because as a group of clues, a few being: money due to arrive to her soon, the forms for her accident with her dad's car were not only picked up as she said she would, but she brought them with her; and finally, locking her car. - point to a temporary or limited "running away" as most likely.

      Also, to all who feel the locking of the doors is a force of habit. Agreed.

      Very likely this is what we are looking at. However, when viewed in the light of all that is the disappearance of Maura Murray, the locking of the doors in frigid temps, after an accident, and possibly fleeing from a DUI, coupled with other factors - I can really feel a vibe of disorganization and forgetting ones locks would feel very plausible if she had zero intention of coming back.

      But with all she was going through, the act of locking her doors seems to speak more towards a deliberate action of, "I'll be back soon" and not "I'm outta here for forever" or even functioning by habit.

      Zachery, regards AAA - certainly that is a great point about the card being in the car already! I wonder though, if something nefarious had already occurred to Maura, would the would-be offender, or person-in-the-know, really have the forward thinking ability to A) do whatever to Maura (help her disappear or hurt her or whatever we are suggesting) and all that that entails and B) remember to use the AAA card of Mauras after an unintentional accident? Possibly they think fast on their feet, yet coupled with the other points, it just seems more plausible that it was Maura. But I'm with you, I really liked any theory linked to the idea it wasn't even Maura driving that night. :)

      These are just my own thoughts and taking her actions as a collection of moments that point to a likely outcome is all.

      Thank you for your input. I enjoy bouncing ideas back and forth.

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  31. Along these lines, I wonder -- was Brian Rooney ever offically eliminated as a person of interest in the Maura Murray case? I have found several threads on various websites that bring up the possible connections but they all seem to peter out without conclusion.

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    1. Never heard of this guy. Good suggestion. Everybody, check him out:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brian_L._Rooney

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    2. and he drove a red truck.....

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    3. I looked him up. Now that's interesting information. Somehow I've never come across his name before in the search for Maura...and he even had a red truck!

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    4. Rooney was convicted of the abduction, rape and murder of Michelle Gardner-Quinn, a UVM student, in 2006.

      He was from the St. Johnsbury area and had a history of violence toward his exes, including using ether soaked rags (presumably the rag in Maura's tailpipe was tested and found free of such chemicals) to incapacitate his victims.

      He drove a red Jeep Cherokee, was employed in construction, and probably traveled around the area for work. I wonder if he was based out of the Caledonia or Orange County areas of Vermont in 2004 and whether he had temporary tags on that Jeep, which in Vermont are white with red lettering -- like Mass plates.

      I know it's a stretch, but I haven't yet come across any information that eliminates Rooney as a suspect. It shouldn't be too hard to nail down where he was working in early 2004 -- a lot of info was released after the M G-Q murder in 2006.

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  32. I do think there was just as much time for an unseen abduction, maybe set up by someone at the gas station, or just as a target of opportunity by someone looking for such opportunities as, seemingly, was this Godfrey guy, as there was for a tandem car pick up. Both scenarios went unnoticed. I think an abduction is more probable than a deliberate disappearance as I do not think Maura Murray, the girl unable to successfully shoplift and who used a stolen credit card that could easily be tracked directly to her, was capable of pulling off a deliberate disappearance and successfully maintaining it for all these years. She hasn't been heard from, IMO, because she is deceased. Also if someone helped her, I think they would have talked by now. Fred's recent video implies he knows nothing about a deliberate disappearance and I think someone would have told him. (If he did know, he is a great actor. A normal person would have just kept quiet.)

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  33. I think the most important clue in this whole case is the red pickup truck with Massachusetts plates that was seen by a local woman while she was walking to the store. According to her report, she saw a suspicious red pickup truck slowly moving in the direction of the crash site. She also said that 10 minutes later she saw a police car. I think this is a VERY important piece of information.

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  34. High speculation here, but ... I wonder if MM didn't pick up a hitchhiker. Both bags went off. Maybe the person was making a move at that moment? The car sped up into that curve. There's a reason.

    Of course, it could've been one of her friends up front. I doubt all the stuff she had in her car would've weighed enough to count as a "person".

    I was in a single car accident in a similar car years ago but DAMN if I can't remember one or both front bags deploying ...

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    1. Hmmm I'm not sure about older cars but I think the threshold for mine being shut off was 35 lbs or under? I've sat enough shopping bags or my heavy work bag in the seat to get the "airbags are on"
      signal plenty of times.

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    2. The airbag deployment was not always weight sensitive. Don't overthink the airbag.

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    3. I had never considered a hitchhiker but sounds entirely possible. Especially in regards to a man being seen and the airbag going off.

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    4. Airbag systems in a 1996 Saturn were not as advanced as those in more current vehicles. Both airbags would have likely deployed in almost any collision.

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  35. James why the change in opinion again? Did whatever convinced you she was deceased fall through or change? We have to be getting closer to something.

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  36. Back to Godfrey ... unlikely he was still working that late in the day. If he was in the Woodsville area around 7pm, he was either eating or shopping.

    McDonald's?

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  37. Well THAT'S weird. Because he's now dead and we don't have a body for Maura Murray, I think the only thing that could definitely link him would be if he somehow had one of Maura's possessions. We have a decent understanding of what she had with her...but I wouldn't doubt it if this creep's house and belongings are long gone. Maybe police have a record somewhere?

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  38. I wonder if they ran his DNA against the gloves found in Maura's car?

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  39. James, is it possible that a few months back that Conrad via the Facebook group was implicating Godfrey??? Claimed Police knew who did it. We all assumed he was implicating RF, but read his posts again.

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    1. Again I thought he was referring to Isreal Keyes.

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  40. Interesting very interesting....http://empathysinsights.blogspot.co.uk/2011/11/maura-murray.html

    First paragraph said Maura felt headachey or experienced a head trauma or knock to the head or was feeling overwhelmed and totally stressed out.

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    1. That entire synopsis was interesting to read. Thank you.

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    2. I'm not trying to come off as rude...but what is interesting about this? It's a tarot card reading. I read the page-- how much more vague could it get? "Maura either hard a knock to the head, head trauma, had a headache, felt anxious, or overwhelmed...probably one of those." If you surveyed a thousand people, chances are almost all of them would say at some point in the past 24 hours they felt a bit anxious, felt stressed, overwhelmed, had a slight headache, or the bumped/knocked into something at one point in their day. Tarot cards are utter nonesense, as are psychics. Spend some time reading up on how they operate, and the technique of cold/hot reading. If you spent enough time studying it, you could be "psychic" too. Anyone can do it. It's interesting that every single respected "psychic" who was posted online about Maura has a different "intuition" about what happened to her. There's a reason psychics are extremely vague...they leave it open so you yourself can try to make something fit the situation, while giving them credit.

      There's a reason no one has EVER been able to prove psychic abilities under controlled testing. It's been studied for centuries. (This is coming from someone who knows a VERY well known 'psychic' personally). It sucks, because I grew up with her and we have been friends for decades, but I absolutely hate what she does, as I feel it's scamming people. She knows she has no psychic powers...but the world believes she does.

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    3. From parent comment in thread: "First paragraph said Maura felt headachey or experienced a head trauma or knock to the head or was feeling overwhelmed and totally stressed out."

      From me: "... or was having a rough time of it. Or, in a general sense, was unhappy in some way, or was drinking .. or it was her back that hurt but she was thinking about, hence the 'head' thing I said earlier ..."

      Not exactly specific information.

      "She also knew someone whose name began with the letter M or the letter J who either had knowledge of why she went to New Hampshire, or where New Hampshire. Or neither. Or both."

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    4. Thank you anonymous. I am glad someone else said it. Harry Houdini made many enemies back in the day trying to prove exactly what you said. But most people will believe what they want to believe and see what they want to see. That's why some arm chair sleuths working this case are revered for their "insider" knowledge. If you listen to them though you realize they know no more than anyone else here.

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  41. Very interesting, if the newspaper information is in fact correct. I think Maura meeting a dangerous character at some point in her travels post accident (if she didn't perish in the woods while hiding from the police - which is my #1 theory) is just as likely as her being able to live off the grid all this time. Abduction and murder in general is unlikely, but it happens all the time, even in crowded parking lots (like that woman who was abducted in a target parking lot in the middle of the day in Kansas).

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  42. I always thought abduction was a valid theory. Maura was in a very vulnerable position. No one knew she had left school and was hours away from home with no cell reception, she had wrecked her car and coupled with the probably impairment due to alcohol she could've been easy prey for an opportunist. In Maura's case all the leading voices are men and it always seems they underestimate how dangerous simply being a young woman can be. A bad situation can turn worse very quickly when a young woman like Maura is in a vulnerable position like she was. It isn't hard to believe at all that an opportunist came along. Perhaps not near the crash scene, but later on as we don't know how far Maura got.

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  43. Something to consider - if Maura had stayed at multiple places in the nearby area and she is known to have sticky fingers - couldn't she have kept a key or discovered a way to get into a rental without paying money? Scope to match Godfrey widens to 1) any place Godfrey had worked on/cleaned previously 2) that was not formally rented on that evening AND 3) that Maura had previously stayed or previously had access to.

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    1. Excellent thinking! These should all be looked into.

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  44. Their seems to be quite a few serial killers going thru town there, even Isreal Keyes, usually one in a million is a killer, but they seem to be gravitating in that area.

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  45. The rag in Maura's tailpipe has just never really made sense. From what I've read here, it was never suppose to come to light either. Since it was originally evidence known only to the police, it's easy to infer they think someone other than Maura put it there unbeknownst to her. (Is it already established that Fred told her to use a rag in such a way? Not sure.)

    Fred Murray mentioned that Maura's car was running on 3 cylinders and sometimes sputtered when it slowed down. He thinks it may have stalled when she rounded the bend near the weathered barn. That sort of explains why one of the neighbors says they heard the car accelerate before impact. She may have been pumping the gas peddle to keep the car from stalling out, but lost control of it and slid off the road instead.

    I suspect this is more a case of 'what you see is what you get' than many believe.

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    1. A very good point you make! Especially with your last statement.

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  46. +anon 12.20.15 rememberrrrrr FM said he told her to stuff the rag to avoid getting pulled over when the saturn would smoke thennnn, podcast #12 ClintHarting said when the rag was "discovered" the family was instructed not to publicize it. And a family member blew it & mentioned it on a message board (during the initial investigation) I thought the tow guy @ lavoie's found it...... now podcast #19 says CSmith told the "Westman's" about the rag in the onset. sooooo wth revolves around the-rag-in-the-tailpipe ???

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  47. I personally believe it was isreal keyes.

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  48. Aparently the rag was shoved way up the muffler. I doubt it was used to indicate she went for help, perhaps Maura put it in there knowing her car can't get stolen.

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  49. It could be something very simple, since every minute counts, perhaps the bus driver hit or ran over her by accident, he was the last to see her, failed the lie detector tests, he also said something odd,"there was no blood on her face," no one asked that. I don't think he abducted her, I think there was an accident then a cover up because they were scared.

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  50. The rag in Maura's tailpipe was tested and found to be free of chloroform or other incapacitating substances, correct? I seem to recall reading this somewhere, years ago, but can't remember where.

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    1. A key piece of evidence..seemingly vanished.

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  51. If she jogged away from the car while the police officer was creating the accident report, she could have been picked up by a stranger at that time, even by force. If that is the case, the "window of opportunity" could have been an hour or longer.

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    1. No signs of struggle, which doesnt mean anything, Im swaying to a disappearing act, only if she planned it 3 months ahead of time.

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  52. If i were to pick a serial, my money wpuld be on Isreal Keyes, he died in an Alaskan jail, he was very methodical, he was younger and more physically fit.

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