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Author Topic: Newspaper Articles  (Read 1392 times)


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Newspaper Articles # 134
« Reply #135 on: December 12, 2019, 05:23:47 pm »
The Patriot Ledger

Friday, November 19, 2004

Missing Hanson woman's last call yet to be investigated: N.H. condo owners say police made no effort to contact them since February. By Joe McGee

HANSON - The family of a missing 22-year-old is demanding to know why police apparently failed to investigate one of the last telephone calls she made on the day she disappeared.

At 1 p.m. on Feb. 9, Maura Murray called a Wakefield couple who own a condominium at the Seasons at Attitash resort in Bartlett, N.H., that was for rent. Murray's family has stayed at the resort.

But the couple, Dominic and Linda Salamone, say they have never heard from investigators.

"It's so upsetting," Linda Salamone said last night. ''I was the last person she talked to, so wouldn't I be the first person they would call to at least find out her state of mind?''

Murray made her last call at 2 p.m. on the same day to a toll-free number that offers information about lodging in Stowe, Vt.

Salamone said she did not know about Murray's mysterious disappearance until last month, when the mother of the young woman's boyfriend telephoned to ask about the February call.

"I couldn't even tell her what she said because it was so long ago but I'm assuming she wanted to rent the place," Linda Salamone said.

Sharon Rausch, the mother of Murray's boyfriend, Army Lt. Bill Rausch, said she discovered the call to the Salamones last month when she looked over Murray's cell phone bill for February.

"It blew our minds that it's now eight months later and we're finding out that (police) never even called these people," Rausch said.

New Hampshire State Police said the investigator who was given the phone records, Lt. John Scarinza, would not be available for comment until Monday.

This is not the first time the Murray family has criticized the way the investigation has been handled.

In July, Laurie Murray found out from a Patriot Ledger reporter that police had conducted a day-long search for her daughter. Police said they had told her ex-husband, Fred Murray of Weymouth, and assumed he would tell her, but Murray denied in a television interview that he had been notified.

In June, Laurie Murray criticized police for suggesting that her daughter had killed herself or run away. Murray believes her daughter was abducted.

Murray was last seen Feb. 9 in Haverhill, N.H., a small town near the Vermont border, where she crashed her car on Route 112, the Kancamagus Highway. Earlier in the day she left her dormitory at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst without telling anyone why.

Police said Murray was dealing with personal issues, but family members said none of it was serious enough that she would run away.

Bartlett, where the Salamones have their condominium, is about 60 miles east of Haverhill on Route 112.

While the Murrays may have lost faith in the police investigation, they are continuing their effort to find their daughter.

A new website launched last week, www.mauramurray.com, offers information about the case and a forum for people to chat.

"We've already had interest from people," said Kerri Doble Gingras of Marshfield, a relative of Murray who developed the web site with her husband.

"We're hopeful from having a response that at least she's still on people's minds," she said.

Murray's story will be featured on the Montel Williams talk show on a date to be announced.

Over the last month, volunteers have also attached photos of Murray to their mail with information about how to contact police.

But the family is also dealing with another crisis.

Laurie Murray was diagnosed with throat cancer last month and is undergoing 30 days of chemotherapy and radiation.

"Everything comes in numbers. We already had Maura and now this," Murray said. "But I'm a fighter and I'll beat this."

She said she is determined to see her daughter again.

"I want her home for the holidays," she said.

Joe McGee may be reached at jmc...@ledger.com.


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Newspaper Articles # 135
« Reply #136 on: December 12, 2019, 05:25:50 pm »
The Boston Channel

November 18/19, 2004

Father Keeps Hope Alive In Search For Missing Daughter

Maura Murray Last Seen Feb. 9, 2004

BOSTON -- It's a parent's nightmare come true for a South Shore father.

NewsCenter 5's Liz Brunner reported that Fred Murray's daughter, Maura, has been missing since February. The college student disappeared after making a car trip to rural New Hampshire.

Murray said the police are now treating the case as if it's cold, so he's taken it upon himself to keep hope alive.

Every other weekend for nine months Fred Murray has made the trip from Connecticut to a New Hampshire motel that has become the home base in his search for his missing daughter.

"No one else is looking and the case would just die and be forgotten. I've got to do it. I owe it to my daughter," said Murray.

Maura Murray, 22, an athlete and honors student at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, was last seen the evening of Feb. 9, 2004, after her car crashed in Haverhill, N.H. Neighbors called the police. One offered the young woman help, but she refused. Within minutes she vanished.

"The people who called in to the police said my daughter was sitting one to two minutes before the cops came, which means all the police had to do was go down the street and grab her," said Murray.

Alcohol was found in the car. Murray said if his daughter was drinking, she probably panicked, afraid she'd get in trouble.

"So she starts walking away," said Murray.

Murray believes his daughter became a victim of foul play.

"They know it was a young girl, they don't call ahead. They let her walk into the national forest. They let a young girl in 12-degree temperatures walk away," he said.

With that, Fred Murray's anger grows. He accused police of waiting too long when they were just minutes away from finding his daughter.

In their search for Maura Murray, New Hampshire State police say the immediate area was searched the night of the accident and neighbors were interviewed. But a ground and air search wasn't conducted until a day and a half later. Murray says that was too late.

"They can't answer why they didn't drive two minutes down the road. It took 38 hours to start the investigation," Murray said.

No footprints were ever found in the woods. Search dogs tracked the woman's scent from the scene of the accident to the next corner.

"Which is right in front of the last guy who spoke to my daughter, and also right in front of the house of the last person to have actually seen my daughter," said Murray.

That person initially told police he didn't see anything the night of Maura Murray's disappearance. Three months later he came forward with different information: He'd seen someone who fit Maura Murray's description walking about five miles away. Murray wonders if the man knows more.

Murray said the police have already made up their minds.

"Suicide, hypothermia or runaway. Back and forth, one to three, nothing about number four -- a bad guy," said Murray.

The day Maura Murray left UMass, she e-mailed her professors that she had a family problem and would be gone for about a week. Rumors flew that she wanted to disappear. Murray thinks she came to New Hampshire, a frequent family destination, to sort something out.

"If she was upset and wanted to get away to find peace, it would be here. It doesn't matter what brought her here to this point. Once she got here, something happened," he said. "My daughter is right there on that poster. If that person came out of the poster, she'd walk right out of it smiling. We were like buddies. I want my buddy back. That's what I'm doing here."

New Hampshire State Police told NewsCenter 5 that they've logged thousands of hours investigating Maura Murray's disappearance, including a number of ground and air searches. The case is active, but at this point, they say there's no reason to believe a crime was committed.

Anyone who has seen Maura or has information about her disappearance is asked to contact either the New Hampshire State Police at (603) 271-3636, or visit www.spbowers.com/mauramissing.html.


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Newspaper Articles # 136
« Reply #137 on: December 12, 2019, 05:27:53 pm »
The Hanson Express

November 24, 2004

Missing Phone Call

By Justin Graeber

Hanson - In what is becoming a long list of frustrations for the family and friends of Maura Murray, it appears that the New Hampshire State Police did not even investigate the final phone call Murray made from her cell phone the day she disappeared.

On February 9, Hanson native and Whitman-Hanson high school graduate Maura Murray slid off the road on a remote highway in New Hampshire near the Vermont border. An eye witness watched her get out of the car and went to call the police, but when he returned Murray was gone. She has not been seen or heard from since.

Members of her family have long been frustrated with the investigation into her disappearance, feeling that the police did not act quickly enough in the hours following her disappearance. The police still maintain that the most likely scenario is that Murray left of her own volition, while the family has always felt she was abducted.

According to Sharon Rausch, the mother of Maura's fiance' Billy Rausch, the last two calls made from Maura's cell phone were to a UMass number and to a couple who is part of a condo association in the area of New Hampshire where Murray appeared headed.

The UMass number is pretty much a dead end for investigators, since the person who lived in the room Maura called in February has most likely moved on.

But the other number is more troubling in its omission from the investigation. The number Maura called belonged to a Wakefield couple, Linda and Domenic Salamone. When Rausch called them, she learned that they rent a condo in the same New Hampshire complex where Murray and her family had often stayed.

Although the call to the Salamones was one of the last Maura Murray made before she went missing, the Salamones only learned of their part in the story when they were contacted by Rausch, nearly eight months later. According to Rausch, they were appalled" by the lack of action by the police and were willing to talk to the press to get the word out that they were never contacted.

Rausch came upon the Salamones' phone number while looking over Maura's phone bills for the month of Feburary. The phone was a gift from Billy Rausch to Maura and was still listed under Sharon Rausch's name.

The reason this recent revelation is so explosive is that it shoots a hole in the State Police's theory that Maura committed suicide or ran away. If Maura was running away for good, it is unlikely that she would be looking to rent a condo in New Hampshire. Before she left the UMass campus, where she was a nursing student, Murray sent a letter to her professors stating that there had been a death in the family and she would need some time off from school. It was later determined that there was no death, and many believe that Murray was simply seeking to get away for a few days to deal with the stress of a recent car crash. But if she was simply seeking a few days' respite, the car crash on that snowy road may have changed the plans.

The Express attempted to contact the state police for this story, but the detective working on the case could not be reached by press time. In the past, the spokesperson for the police has only said that that case was ongoing.

Maura's family has also released a website, www.mauramurray.com. Interested persons can read the latest news, view pictures of Maura, or share information.


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Newspaper Articles # 137
« Reply #138 on: December 12, 2019, 05:29:57 pm »
The Caledonian-Record

December 10, 2004

Letters To Editor - Please help look for Maura Murray

By Patti Davidson

To the Editor:

'Tis the season to be jolly as family and friends gather to celebrate the holidays. This year has been filled with heartache and sadness for us because we are missing a family member.

While decorating the Christmas tree with my young children I try to pretend everything is OK. Then my 9-year-old son turns to me and says, "Mom, do you think you'll find Maura before Christmas?" I can no longer hold back my tears. My son is now crying and says, "Mom, I feel sad for Maura and her Dad." Comforting him, I tell him we are trying our hardest to find Maura.

His letter to Santa reads, "Dear Santa, please help find Maura for her father."

I am making a plea from my heart asking the people to help us look and find Maura Murray so we can bring her home.

Patti Davidson

Weymouth, Mass.


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Newspaper Articles # 138
« Reply #139 on: December 12, 2019, 05:32:00 pm »
New Hampshire Sunday News

December 26, 2004

2004: A look back at some of the year's big stories


--Maura Murray disappears: The 22-year-old University of Massachusetts nursing student has not been seen since the car she was driving went off the road into trees at a sharp curve on Route 112 near the Weathered Barn in Haverhill the evening of Feb. 9. She had locked the car and disappeared in the few minutes it took police to respond to a resident's telephoned report of the accident. Searches of the woods and the nearby Wild Ammonoosuc River -- on the snow-covered ground and after the snow had melted -- have found no trace of Murray.


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Newspaper Articles # 139
« Reply #140 on: December 12, 2019, 05:34:03 pm »
The New Hampshire Union Leader

January 9, 2005

Father wants police files on missing daughter opened

Stumped in his search for Maura Murray, missing since a cold night 11 months ago when her car went off a North Country road, her father said on Friday that he plans to consult with a lawyer and write a letter to New Hampshire's new governor, John H. Lynch.

Frederick J. Murray of Weymouth, Mass., wrote to Gov. Craig Benson last May, conveying his disappointment that police had been unable to determine what happened to his daughter, who apparently walked away at about 7 p.m. on Feb. 9, 2004, leaving her car alongside Route 112 in North Haverhill, its airbag deployed and the windshield cracked as if her head had struck the glass in the impact with banked-up frozen snow.

Murray said he never got a reply from Benson, although he has heard back from law enforcement authorities who have denied him access to their investigative records.

He has written to New Hampshire Safety Commissioner Richard M. Flynn; New Hampshire state police, the lead investigative agency; Grafton County Sheriff Charles E. Barry, and the police chief at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, Mass., where his daughter was a student. He requested copies of the radio dispatch logs, witness interview reports and "any records with any affiliated law enforcement agency and any information that pertains to Maura Murray and this case."

All the law enforcement authorities denied him access to their files, explaining that the investigative documents he sought were confidential and exempted from the public-records provisions of right-to-know laws.

The most recent response Murray got was a letter dated Jan. 3, from Thomas Andross of the Grafton County Sheriff's Department.

Andross wrote:

"The information requested is part of files that are investigative in nature and release would constitute an unwarranted invasion of privacy under (the right-to-know law). The release and disclosure at this time could interfere with an ongoing investigation."

Said Murray:

"I want to look in those dispatch logs to find out if there is anything that might indicate a direction that they might have overlooked that I might develop. . . . This is not a criminal investigation. This is a missing person investigation. So, why all this secrecy? What is it they don't want me to know?"

At state police headquarters on Friday, requests for comment on the status of the Maura Murray case were referred to Sgt. Thomas J. Yorke. Messages were left at the Troop F station in Twin Mountain for Yorke and Lt. John K. Scarinza. Both have been involved in the investigation, but neither was expected to pick up their messages until tomorrow.

Murray, who has traipsed the woods near the crash site on numerous weekends, followed tips to dead ends and listened to the theories of psychics, worked with relatives and friends to maintain a Web site and gather pledges backing a $40,000 reward offer, said he is now "on the verge of enlisting legal aid in my attempt to get information."

State law provides for a denial of records under the right-to-know law to be appealed to a Superior Court.

Mystery phone call

One piece of the puzzle that Murray believes is in the police records he seeks is the identity of the person who held a certain telephone number on the University of Massachusetts campus on the day his daughter disappeared. Murray said telephone records show she made a call from her cellular telephone to that number the afternoon of Feb. 9, 2004, but the current subscriber did not have that number last year.

"I want to ask the people who had that number what my daughter may have said when she called. I'm trying to figure out her frame of mind," said the frustrated father, remembering better days, when he and his daughter, whose 22nd birthday was on May 4, 2004, would get together on a weekend to hike a trail in the White Mountains.

The call to the phone on the UMass campus was not the only one Maura Murray made the day she disappeared: She talked with Linda Salamone who owns a condominium at the Seasons at Attitash in Bartlett.

(Haverhill, where Murray's car was found, is on the western edge of the state; Bartlett, on the eastern side. One way to get between the two towns is Route 112, which crosses through the White Mountains as the Kancamagus Highway.)

Condo rental call

Salamone, of Wakefield, Mass., did not know she had talked with Maura Murray until Sharon Rausch, working from the cell phone billing records, dialed her number in October. Rausch, of Marengo, Ohio, is the mother of Murray's boyfriend, Army Lt. William Rausch.

"Only then did it all clicked," Salamone said on Friday of how her conversation with Mrs. Rausch last October made her realize she was one of the last people to talk with Murray before she disappeared.

Salamone does not remember details of her conversation with Maura Murray, but presumes it had to do with renting her condo in Bartlett. Salamone said she likely told Murray that the condo was taken because people rent it months in advance of the ski season.

A New Hampshire state police investigator did not contact Salamone until after the Patriot Ledger newspaper in Quincy, Mass., ran a story in November that reported she was among the last people to talk with the missing woman.

Salamone said the state police officer told her he was following up on an earlier call. "He said they had tried to contact me before, but had not left a message then and that their investigation had since taken a different turn." She said she explained to the investigator that the condo is booked months ahead and she could not remember what was said in the 90 seconds or so that she and Maura Murray spoke nine months before.

Family vacation spot

For Fred Murray, it's logical that his daughter would seek to stay at the condominium complex at Attitash, where the family had vacationed in the past, and disturbing that investigators did not follow through on the call until prompted by a newspaper story.

"There is nobody Maura knows up there. She was looking for a place to stay," Murray said, adding that his daughter had taken extra clothing with her and some school books.

"This indicated that my daughter had a purpose (in leaving school abruptly on a Monday to travel to New Hampshire.) The police never followed up on a phone call she made on the afternoon she left. If they were not going to do something as elemental as that, what makes you think they will follow through with a proper investigation?"

In past conversations he has had with investigators, Murray said, "They keep shifting from hypothermia, to, 'this is a case of a runaway,' to, 'it's a suicide.' . . . Anything to avoid Number 4, which is the 'bad guy' alternative. If it's a bad guy who came along when she was there alone that night, the onus is upon them to do something and they can't."


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Newspaper Articles # 140
« Reply #141 on: December 12, 2019, 05:36:06 pm »
The Caledonian-Record

January 17, 2005

Letters To Editor - A grateful father

By Fred Murray

To the Editor:

So many people have selflessly and enthusiastically given of themselves and their time that if force of will were enough by itself, then Maura would have been back with us many months ago. When people ask me if there is anything that they can do, I tell them that I know they would already have done it if there were. Your universally overwhelming support is a striking demonstration yet again of the inherent goodness of people.

You can sense my gratitude, but I want your "thank you" to come to you when you look in the mirror and see reflected a person who, by choice, interrupted his or her life to try to help another human being in trouble. If there is any worthier motivation than that, we'd all be hard pressed to name what it is.

In Deep Appreciation,

Fred Murray

Father of Maura Murray, Missing Person since 02/09/04

Weymouth, Mass.


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Newspaper Articles #141
« Reply #142 on: December 15, 2019, 08:10:45 am »
Massachusetts Daily Collegian

January 26, 2005

Missing student’s parents angry over police investigation

It has been almost one year since University of Massachusetts junior Maura Murray vanished without a trace. As her family and friends continue to hope and pray for her safe return, they have also expressed anger with the New Hampshire State Police who allegedly botched the investigation.

The 21-year-old nursing student from Hanson, Mass. packed up her belongings in her Kennedy Hall dorm room on February 9, 2004. In recent months, the Murray family has discovered that police have made several critical errors in the investigation, and allegedly lied to the news media.

At approximately 7 p.m. on Feb. 9th, Maura was driving on route 112 in Haverhill, NH, police said. As she was trying to negotiate a curve, her car slid off the road.

According to witnesses, after the crash Maura appeared to be frightened, but physically unharmed. A passing school bus driver stopped and asked Maura if she needed help, but she refused saying she had already called “Triple A” from her cell phone. However, there was no cell phone service in that area. The bus driver said he drove a short distance to his home and called police, but Maura had left the scene before they arrived. It appeared as if she had disappeared into the cold night.

Neither the New Hampshire State Police nor Haverhill, NH Police questioned anybody who lived in the vicinity of where Maura was last seen until 36 hours after her disappearance. This is just one in a series of critical errors that that has angered the Murray family.

In a June interview with WCVB-TV, the police officer in charge of the investigation, Lt. John Scarinza of the New Hampshire State Police, Troop F, claimed that authorities had found a note in Maura’s dorm room that she had wrote to her boyfriend, Army Lt. Billy Rausch of Ohio, indicating troubles in their relationship.

“Sometime between Sunday and Monday morning, she packed up all her belongings in her dorm room, to include taking all her pictures off the walls, taking everything out of her bureaus, [and] put them all in boxes [and] left [them] on her bed,” Scarinza told WCVB-TV, “[She] left a personal note to her boyfriend on top of the boxes.”

Maura’s mother, Laurie Murray, told the Daily Collegian in August that the relationship between her daughter and Rausch was a “very, very good relationship.”

Raush’s mother, Sharon Rausch, reiterated that statement in a recent interview. She said there was a point where the couple’s relationship was rocky in the spring of 2002, but they had resolved their problems by summer and had a good relationship since then.

Her son arrived at Maura’s dorm room with police just two days after she went missing. He said there was no recent letters to him from Maura that were found. “There is no note,” Sharon Raush said.

Maura’s father, Fred Murray, sent a letter to New Hampshire Governor Craig Benson on May 21, 2004 asking him to persuade State Police to receive assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the search for his daughter. Murray never received a response.

Since then, Murray has applied for a Freedom of Information Act in order to receive more information about the investigation.

“After writing to the governor, I appealed again to the attorney general and the district attorney of Grafton County, but I don’t expect anything,” Murray said.

Murray has been traveling to New Hampshire to search for his daughter almost every weekend since her disappearance.

“This place is like the old west,” Murray said as he described the atmosphere of Northern New Hampshire.

Murray said part of his search has included hanging out in local bars in hopes to overhear a conversation in which someone mentions something about Maura. Murray said he has been actively investigating his daughter’s disappearance himself because he does not trust the police to conduct a proper investigation. “These guys can’t catch a cold,” he said.

Murray said his main frustration is that police refuse to investigate “scenario number 4.” Lt. Scarniza told the Daily Collegian in August that the police investigation has led them to believe Maura “left on her own volition.” This would lead one to believe Maura either ran away, committed suicide, or suffered from hypothermia. The Murrays disagreed and believe she was abducted.

Fred Murray believes the police do not want to admit there is a predator in their small, rural community.

“There’s a bad guy on their turf in their backyard,” Murray said. “The skunk is on their doorstep.”

While the Murray family has been disputing facts about the police investigation, yet another troubling piece of information came to light in October 2004 when Sharon Rausch was reviewing Maura’s cell phone records. The cell phone was given to Maura by her boyfriend, which was purchased in his mother’s name. Rausch came across the last two numbers Maura called three hours before she disappeared.

The first number was to a UMass Amherst dormitory. The number appeared to be a dead end for investigators because the person who lived there likely moved on.

Rausch decided to call the second number, which was to Dominic and Linda Salamone of Wakefield, Mass. In the course of Raush’s conversation with Linda Salamone, she claims that she realized the Salamones own a condo in Bartlett, NH — the same condo association the Murray family vacationed in years past.

Although the phone call was one of the last Maura made before she went missing, the Salamones said police never once contacted them. The couple did not learn of their part of the story until being contacted by Rausch, eight months after Maura vanished.

“I was speechless,” Rausch recalled, “and that doesn’t happen to me very often.”

Fred Murray explained that this new information is another piece of evidence that points to Maura being abducted.

“She had a destination,” Murray said. “She was on route 112, which goes right to Bartlett… [The police] will do anything to avoid saying ‘number 4.'”

This new information does not back up the NH State Police theory that Maura ran away or committed suicide because it would be unlikely for her to rent a condo if she was planning on running away. Before she left UMass, she contacted her professors stating there was a death in the family, when there was no such death.

Many people believe she was taking time off from school to deal with the stress of a recent car crash in which she caused $10,000 worth of damage to her father’s vehicle. In addition, Maura’s school textbooks were found in the vehicle.

Sharon Rausch and Fred Murray have both said they could not be unhappier with the police investigation.

“It’s clear they have their own agenda and it has nothing to do with the truth or finding Maura,” said Rausch.

More bad news hit the Murray family this past October. Maura’s mother, Laurie Murray was diagnosed with throat cancer. According to Rausch, she has already undergone 30 days of chemotherapy and radiation treatment and has been doing better. Rausch said Murray has told people she is going to beat the cancer so she can see Maura come home.

The Daily Collegian has made several attempts to contact New Hampshire State Police for information regarding this article, but calls were not returned.

Rausch asks anyone who would like to help keep hope for Maura to pray, wear a blue ribbon, or light an electric- or battery-operated candle until she comes home.

On their official Web site, New Hampshire State Police have asked anyone with information regarding Maura’s disappearance to call Sgt. Robert Bruno at 603-846-3333. The Murray family asks those with information to either call police or contact them through their “Maura’s Missing” Web site at http://www.mauramurray.com


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Newspaper Articles #142
« Reply #143 on: December 15, 2019, 08:12:25 am »
The Patriot Ledger

February 9, 2005

Gone a Year Ago Today - Missing Hanson woman's family prods officials; Treat it as crime, they urge N.H.

By Joe McGee

It was one year ago that Maura Murray of Hanson disappeared in the snowy woods of New Hampshire. Her father and other family members were in New Hampshire today, trying again to get authorities to treat her disappearance as a crime.

Murray, then 22, left her dormitory at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst on Feb. 9, 2004, and traveled to New Hampshire for reasons that are unclear.

That evening her car skidded off the road in Haverhill, N.H., but by the time police arrived she was gone without a trace. There were no footprints left around the snowy scene and only one witness saw Murray for a brief moment. Inside her car there were only a few belongings and bottles of alcohol.

The New Hampshire State Police have labeled Murray a missing person, but her family and others close to her believe she met with foul play. They have asked police to treat her disappearance as a criminal case.

‘‘I just want them to have some ownership of the situation and everything that has evolved over the past 12 months,'' said Murray's boyfriend, Army Lt. Bill Rausch of Oklahoma.

Murray's father, Fred Murray, her brother, Freddie, and her sister, Kathleen, were among those who planned to deliver a written appeal to Gov. John Lynch today asking that he release records pertaining to her case. The group was to then travel to Haverhill to place a missing person poster and ribbon where she was last seen.

Later this evening, friends and family will observe a moment of prayer for Maura during an Ash Wednesday Mass at St. Joseph the Worker Church in Hanson.

Over the past year Murray's mother, Laurie Murray, developed cancer. Murray said she is too ill to travel to New Hampshire today. She said that if she could speak to Gov. Lynch she'd keep her message simple.

‘‘This is definitely foul play and the FBI should be on this and I'm very disappointed that this didn't happen sooner,'' Murray said.

Rausch, Murray's boyfriend, says the family should at least be entitled to copies of police records to prove that everything was handled properly.

Fred Murray filed a records request with the New Hampshire attorney general's office seeking release of all pertinent records. That request was denied.

The Murrays' suspicions of a botched investigation were heightened in October when they began calling numbers listed on Murray's cell phone records from last February. It turned out that the last person she called was Linda Salamone of Wakefield, whose condo in Bartlett, N.H., Murray wanted to rent.

Salamone told The Patriot Ledger in November that she was never interviewed by police. This is one of the details the Murrays want to discuss with police.

‘‘It seems more than a reasonable request,'' Rausch said of the records request.

‘‘They said there is no foul play involved and no leads so I would think there wouldn't be a valid reason why they couldn't be released,'' he said.

New Hampshire State Police investigators handling the case could not be reached for comment yesterday.

The Murrays are encouraging the public to E-mail Lynch this week to ask that officials re-examine the case with the assistance of the FBI. They also request that everyone display a blue ribbon on car antennae, rear view mirrors and homes as a reminder to pray for Maura.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:16:41 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #143
« Reply #144 on: December 15, 2019, 08:13:03 am »
The Republican

Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Parents still seek missing daughter

By Holly Angelo


A year ago today, University of Massachusetts-Amherst nursing student Maura Murray of Hanson, Mass., crashed her car into a tree on a rural road in Haverhill, N.H. and disappeared.

Her family will mark the sad anniversary with a vigil at the accident site on Route 112 and a Mass later in the day. Murray's father, Fred J. Murray of Weymouth, Mass., will start the day in Concord, N.H., asking Gov. John Lynch to assist in releasing to him state police records regarding the investigation. The state police say those records should remain in their hands so the investigation is not jeopardized.

"If the police aren't looking for my daughter and I'm the only one looking for her I need that information," Murray said yesterday during a phone interview from Haverhill. "I'm asking the governor to either release the records to me or have the state police declare it a criminal investigation. Or, I'd like the governor to ask the attorney general to accept the help the FBI offered."

Lt. John K. Scarinza, commander of State Police Troop F in Twin Mountain, N.H., said the case is very much open and the FBI has been used during the investigation.

"I certainly understand the family's frustrations, but it's not for any lack of effort on our part," Scarinza said yesterday. "It is absolutely an open investigation. We work on it every day."

Scarinza said there are no new leads on where Murray might be. He said it is technically a missing person case because police have not been able to develop leads that point to a criminal case. However, the case is being investigated like a criminal case, he said.

Murray was 21 when she disappeared. A witness to the car accident, which left Murray's 1996 Saturn undrivable, said Murray was unharmed. The witness left the accident scene to call police. When the witness returned, Murray was gone.

Before leaving UMass, Murray e-mailed her professors to tell them she was heading home for the week because of a death in the family, but there was no death in the family. She also packed up her dorm room.

"What is hard to understand at this point in time is why Maura left UMass essentially without telling anyone why she was leaving," Scarinza said. "That is sometimes to me the bigger mystery. No one seems to understand what was going on in her life that she decided to pick up, pack up and leave."

Scarinza asks anyone with any type of information about Murray to call (603) 846-5517.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:16:56 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #144
« Reply #145 on: December 15, 2019, 08:13:41 am »
Fred Murray Letter to Governor Lynch

February 9, 2005

Mr. Frederick Murray

Governor John Lynch

Office of the Governor

State House

25 Capitol Street

Concord NH 03301

Governor Lynch:

Today, February 9, 2005 marks the one year point of my daughter, Maura Murray’s unlikely and highly suspicious disappearance following a minor car accident on Route 112 in North Haverhill, New Hampshire.

The investigative body, New Hampshire State Police Troop F of Grafton County, has followed up its astonishingly careless go-through-the-motions response with an unnaturally steadfast refusal to communicate on the matter since. Their investigation includes not questioning neighbors who live one hundred yards from and in sight of the accident scene until 10 days had passed, and this only after my family and friends had spoken to these people and expressed our shock about it to the police. My daughter could have walked right by or have been picked up in a vehicle by the wrong person(s) in full view of these houses. Not even the fact that their tracking dog lost Maura’s scent squarely before these properties, one of which was owned by the last person who talked to Maura, and another by the last person to actually see her, was enough to provoke the most elementary of basic investigatory technique.

Phone records reveal that Maura called a couple who rent their condominium in Bartlett, New Hampshire, where our family has vacationed for decades, just before she left the University of Massachusetts and headed directly that way last February 9. When I recently discovered that these folks had never even been contacted by Troop F it felt as if I had just been struck across the face with a two-by-four.

I remain convinced also that police have not fully developed a lead given to them concerning a local man who claimed he knew what had happened to “that girl” and disclosed the location where she had been held and by whom.

Law Enforcement’s decision on this case from its inception has been to insist that you can take your pick of three possible happenstances: suicide, runaway, or hyperthermia victim but not consider the fourth which is the probability, rather than the possibility, that is, that a bad guy grabbed her and they can’t catch him. To support their diversion the commander of Troop F twice stated during The Chronicle Program on Channel 5 in Boston that Maura wrote a final letter to her boyfriend and left it in a prominent place in her dormitory room. This clearly suggests the traditional “suicide letter”, but the deception is that she never wrote or left such a letter at all and the police were fully cognizant of this fact at that time.

The pattern certainly doesn’t indicate adherence to accepted and recommended police procedure. To date the high law enforcement officials in Concord have reacted like ostriches to this pseudo-investigation by your Troop F. I am left with a hollow, gut-wrenching sensation resulting from finally knowing for sure that the people responsible for finding my daughter are not even submitting a mail-it-in effort on her behalf. Worse still is that they remain determined to not accept the offer of meaningful participation extended by the Federal Bureau of Investigation which is strangely odd indeed.

I am appealing to you, sir, to ask Attorney General Kelly Ayotte to authorize the release of the records in this case to me through my petition under the Freedom of Information Act and the New Hampshire Right to Know Law RSA CH 91-A. I am basing this plea on the present classification of my daughter’s case as a missing person situation and not as a criminal investigation. What could be the nature of this which must be so zealously veiled from view and the motivation prompting such secrecy?

With no informational resources available I am left to desperately search for Maura all by myself. How can I do this if the police sit idly on the applicable evidence? Take, for example, her computer. If I could get it back, I might be able to discern who she contacted on that last afternoon and perhaps discover a new direction to follow. It’s one thing if Troop F isn’t willing to be part of the solution, but please don’t allow them to continue to be part of the problem.

Governor Lynch, you represent my final hope to help my little girl. I pray that you will regard reacting favorably to my entreaty, not so much as your legal obligation, but as a parent, your moral responsibility.


Frederick J. Murray
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:17:07 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #145
« Reply #146 on: December 15, 2019, 08:14:14 am »

February 9, 2005

Father Of Missing Woman Meets With Lynch - Police Don't Believe Foul Play Involved

CONCORD, N.H. -- The father of a Massachusetts woman who disappeared a year ago met with Gov. John Lynch on Wednesday to ask for his help in getting records of the investigation.

Fred Murray, whose daughter Maura vanished after a minor car accident in Haverhill, wants state police to release their records so he can pursue leads himself.

"I asked, failing that, to have it declared a criminal investigation rather than a missing person investigation, and, if he didn't want to do that, I asked him to accept the offer of the FBI to come in," Murray said after the meeting with Lynch.

Lynch made no commitments on the specific requests.

"I told Mr. Murray that I will look into the situation, and I promised to get back to him as soon as I possibly can and that's how we left it," he said.

Maura, a nursing student at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, was last seen on Feb. 9, 2004, walking away from her car on Route 112 in Haverhill. Police said they have no evidence of foul play and have searched the area repeatedly.

"Literally thousand and thousands of hours have been invested in the search for Maura Murray," said state police Lt. John Scarinza of Troop F, which is handling the investigation.

Murray was highly critical of state police and said he's heard nothing from the investigators in six months.

"I am the investigation. That's why I want the information," he said.

Scarinza said his troopers talk with Murray on a regular basis when new leads appear. Murray's claim he hadn't heard from them in six months is "absolutely inaccurate," he said.

Scarinza said the investigation continues. "We work on it, we talk about it every day as miscellaneous leads come in."

Murray's family believes someone picked her up on the road. They have searched the area many times and called in a psychic who said she believes Murray was murdered by a serial killer.

Murray said he and some supporters would return to the site of Maura's disappearance after leaving the Statehouse.

Murray said he planned to tie a new ribbon on a tree near the accident site and a clergyman would say a prayer. He said the hardest part of marking the anniversary would be listening to a song composed by a friend of Maura's.

But he was optimistic after his meeting with Lynch.

"At least I have more hope than I had before and that's why I came," he said.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:17:18 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #146
« Reply #147 on: December 15, 2019, 08:14:48 am »

February 9, 2005

Missing Woman's Father Meets With Governor - Murray Last Seen In Haverhill, N.H.

BOSTON -- One year ago Wednesday, University of Massachusetts student Maura Murray disappeared in the woods of New Hampshire.

NewsCenter 5's Janet Wu reported that it has been a painful year for her family, and her father, Fred Murray, is demanding answers from the governor.

Fred Murray said that he couldn't believe that his daughter ran away or committed suicide, as New Hampshire police contend. He came to the Statehouse in New Hampshire to ask the governor to intervene.

"I don't want the police just to sit on it. They have evidence that they are not using that I need. If they are not going to part of the solution, I don't want them to be part of the problem," he said.

He said that police have refused to give him copies of investigators' notes. His daughter disappeared after her car crashed into a tree in Haverhill, N.H. He said that witnesses spoke with her a few minutes before police arrived at the scene.

"When police got there, she was no more than 100 yards down the street. She is heading off into the national forest. There is no body to help, nowhere to hide, nowhere to run," he said.

Fred Murray said that police failed to look for her in any meaningful way until days later.

"Mr. Murray, it is the first time I met with (him), and as I said, I told Mr. Murray that I will look into it, and I will get back to him just as soon as I possibly can," New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch said.

"We will see if he is able to do anything. If he is, great. If he is not, then I am kind of back to where I was when I came up the front steps," Murray said. "At least I have more hope then I had before."

A service for Maura Murray will be held in her hometown of Hanson, Mass., Wednesday.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:17:30 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #147
« Reply #148 on: December 15, 2019, 08:15:41 am »
Hanson Express

February 9, 2005

Maura Murray: A year of waiting

By Justin Graeber

After a year, Maura Murray's family and friends are no closer to finding out what happened to her.

The Hanson resident and former Whitman-Hanson track standout hasn't been seen since running her car off the road last Feb. 9 in a remote New Hampshire town near the Vermont border. Since then, her friends and family have banded together in an effort to put her name in the media so that someone, somewhere, will come forward with some information.

For the first six months after her disappearance, Maura's father, Fred Murray, trekked up to New Hampshire every weekend to search for his daughter. He combed the woods near the crash site for any trace of her, and talked to locals endlessly – two things he believes the state and local police didn't do enough of in the immediate aftermath of the crash.

“The only person looking for my daughter is myself,” he said.

On Wednesday, Murray petitioned newly elected New Hampshire governor John Lynch to release the records on the case. He said he has had difficulty obtaining many documents that should be public records. He also wants the case to be classified as a criminal investigation, which he believes may result in a more diligent investigation by the state police.

“The brakes have been slammed on what they say is an investigation,” said Murray. “When I do talk to [the state police] it's like a broken record: ‘I have nothing to tell you.’”

As the details of Maura's disappearance surfaced, questions were indeed raised about the police's investigation. The initial report by local police said that “a witness” believed Maura was drunk, but when the crash's sole eyewitness, a local school bus driver, went public, he disputed that fact. The state police have also resisted attempts by the FBI, contacted by the family, to get involved in the case.

Just recently, members of Maura's family discovered that police did not look into Maura's phone records from the day she disappeared. Sharon Rausch, the mother of Maura's fiancé Bill Rausch, got a copy of Maura's last cell phone bill and found that the last call she made was to members of a condo association near where she was last seen. When Rausch contacted the people, she was shocked to find out they had never been questioned by police.

Why that was so significant is because it seems to poke a hole in the state police's theory that Maura went missing of her own accord. Maura was in New Hampshire after she left UMass Amherst, where she was a nursing student. She emailed her professors, saying there had been a death in the family, which turned out not to be true.

The police have maintained that she may have run away, and indeed it is historically much more difficult for police to make headway in a case involving a missing adult. The case has always been classified missing persons. But the phone call would appear to indicate that Maura intended to stay for a few days in New Hampshire, an area where she often vacationed with her family.

This has all led Fred Murray to one conclusion.

“They're not looking,” he said. “[locals] weren't involved until 10 or 11 days after the investigation…what kind of police work is that?”

Other than one minor incident about searches parking, Murray said that the local residents have been pleasant and helpful.

“They're very nice people,” he said. “They've been very sympathetic.”

At UMass, there was an initial outpouring of support after her disappearance, said Dan O'Brien, who writes for the college newspaper The Daily Collegian and has done a few stories on Maura.

“When it happened it was shocking,” he said. “It could have been your best friend…she looked like the all-American girl. It struck a chord in the UMASS community.”

No services are planned at the college for the one year date, O'Brien said. Maura, a transfer student who spent many weekends visiting her out-of-town boyfriend, didn't have time to make a lot of friends before she disappeared. That plus the rapid turnover of a college campus has created a short memory among the students, although there is a small group that follows the case and offers supportive comments on the Collegian's website.

At home in Hanson, a private service was held at St. Joseph the Worker's Church. Maura's mother and her friends from high school, a close knit group of girls who bonded through the track team, attended.

“They keep in touch every day,” said Beth Drewniak, the mother of Liz, one of the girls. “They're very very sad.”

The girls even came up with a slogan that helps them get through the hardest times without their friend - Trust and believe. “They want to believe that she's ok, that she's coming home,” Drewniak said. “It's difficult…we pray all the time.”

“It's a mass of hope,” said Fr. Mark Hannon, pastor of St. Joseph's. “We're trying to keep the hope alive.” He said Maura's friends are “very worried…they hope and pray that Maura is ok.”

After Fred Murray delivered the letter to Lynch, he and other members of her family gathered at the accident site on Route 112 near Haverhill, MA. The aging blue ribbon on the tree which Maura's car struck was replaced, and a local minister offered prayers.

The family has also been keeping Maura's story alive through her website, www.mauramurray.com, and other less-mainstream news venues. A profile on Maura has been set up on several missing persons websites such as crimenews2000.com. Recently, her picture appeared on a stock car at a NASCAR event.

Through it all, Fred Murray is hanging on to hope that his daughter is safe and sound somewhere.

“I want her alive,” he said. “But failing that I want whichever of the dirtbags that did this to be caught.” Although he is skeptical, he also hopes the State Police will be more forthcoming in the future.

“I don't want the state police to be a hindrance,” he said.
« Last Edit: December 15, 2019, 08:17:38 am by MauraMurrayEvidence »


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Newspaper Articles #148
« Reply #149 on: December 15, 2019, 08:18:10 am »
The Caledonian-Record

February 10, 2005

Fred Murray Meets With N.H. Governor - Lynch Says He Will Help If He Can

By Gary E. Lindsley

HAVERHILL, N.H. -- Fred Murray went to Concord, N.H., Wednesday morning to meet with Gov. John Lynch to get help in finding his daughter, Maura Murray.

He also asked the governor for help in obtaining the state police report on his daughter and any other investigative records to assist him in his own investigation.

Maura Murray was a 22-year-old nursing student at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst when she disappeared after a one-car accident on Route 112 in Haverhill, N.H., Feb. 9, 2004.

Murray said he was able to meet with Lynch for about five to 10 minutes Wednesday. He said he hopes the governor wasn't just listening to get him out of the office.

"He said he would look into it," Murray said. "He asked what he could do for me. I said, 1Get the information released so I can stop wasting my time and get some direction.' There's no sense police sitting on (information) if they aren't doing anything with it."

Murray said he also asked Lynch to have state police ask for help from the FBI to help with the investigation to find his daughter.

"If the state police can't do it, get people in who are willing," he said. "Get it listed as a criminal investigation to get manpower on it. Also, if it is listed as a criminal investigation, the FBI does not need to be asked by the state police to become involved."

State Police Lt. John Scarinza has maintained from the beginning Maura's disappearance is a missing-person case.

"I think the state police have done an excellent job with the investigation," New Hampshire Senior Assistant Attorney General Jeff Strelzin said Wednesday.

Strelzin said he believes the information Murray is seeking is "withholdable" under the Freedom of Information Act. And he does not believe his boss, Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, will call in the FBI.

"If the state police feel they need assistance, they will ask for it," said Strelzin. "Overall, I believe the state police have handled it appropriately."

In reference to the state police delay for nine months in contacting the owner of a condominium in Bartlett, to whom Maura had placed one of her last two cell phone calls, he said, "I am not going to comment on specific parts of the investigation."

Murray said Wednesday he will wait a reasonable amount of time to see if Lynch is able to get the records on his daughter's case released. If they are not released, he said he may go to court to try to obtain them.

"I'm not willing to quit," he said.

Murray filed a freedom of information request last year to get the records released and was denied by the state police.

Officials from the Haverhill Police Department, which initially handled the case, deferred comment on it Wednesday to the state police.

Scarinza hasn't return numerous calls to his office over the past few days.


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