The Shenandoah Mystery

The arrest of the Visalia Ransacker/East Area Rapist/Original Night Stalker or Golden State Killer as he would be called in more recent times has left a void in my life. I was enjoying my breakfast and almost spat my food across the table when the news broke at the arrest of Joseph James DeAngelo. I had resided myself to the unfortunate possibility to that what I thought was the ultimate “Who done it?” may never be solved.

By no means am I sad that it saw a resolution. I commend the efforts of investigators across generations that this case has affected and now look forward to not only seeing the final chapter of this case being written with trial of Joe DeAngelo but the advancement in the field of DNA being tested for an offenders Ancestry matches. I can only imagine how many more unsolved cases may see a similar resolution with further advancement and utilization of these techniques.

Still the closure brought to all the surviving victims and the families of the accused, Joe DeAngelo, means more to me than my own personal void of where to redirect my insatiable curiosity. I am aware of the selfishness hinted at in such a statement but as happy as I am for the families and victims of the EAR/ONS as I still personally to call him in abbreviated terms, I wonder where should go next.

The Colonial Parkway Murders are yet another series I still follow from time to time. Yet another series where I hold out hope for a resolution. One could make the argument that in this case, the mystery is even greater as not everyone can even agree a serial killer was active from 1986 to 1989 along the Parkway in Virginia.

Varying victimology, the modus operandi across each case varying. Even with one although a probable homicide, still the proximity to the series of prior cases connect it to the case by circumstance. I’ve always personally wanted to believe that all these cases are connected and given the close-minded nature given to cases of prior generations which has hampered investigations, I still do believe they are connected.

Does it have the classical signs of what you could call the more traditional serial murder crimes? No. The modus operandi various significantly in each case. From strangulation, slashed throats and various other knife related injuries to one couple being found shot to death while one never being found unto this day. Still I cannot help but shake the notion from my mind that these cases share a connection that lies beyond the simple geographic location in which they were committed.

But that does not limit the thoughts I have about this. My over-active imagination constantly guesses about such classic cases of “Who-dun-it”. The case of the Colonial Parkway Murders have left a trail of speculation of whether it was the same offender given the varying nature of each instance attributed to the series of crimes.

Years have passed since these crimes were committed but that doesn’t limit the speculation generated by us Cyber-sleuths and those personally affect by this case. If one were to ask me personally about a personal theory that I have about the case, it might not be that the Colonial Parkway Killer may be responsible but the Colonial Parkway Killers.

The theory of an evolving killer or no serial killer at all both have their own merit yet still in passing years I have come to wonder if there were a pack of offenders that fell under the same umbrella. Given the varying nature of each case attributed to this series, it has wondering if that a group of offenders, if not a cult were responsible in each case.

Much like the case of Janine Balding in Sydney, Australia, I wonder if multiple offenders were present in this case. Given the fact that couples were victimized and if a knife was the apparent murder weapon that was used to control the victims then one could wonder if multiple offenders were present in at least the Thomas-Dowski case. Signs of strangulation and rope burns were present after the fact. It is impossible at least to me, for a lone offender to inflict these wounds.

A slight struggle was indicated at the scene so I wonder how a lone offender managed to control both of them since once his intent would be realized or one victim was attacked the other should flee for their lives. Unless they were restrained by an accomplice.

Growing up in Australia, the murders of Janine Balding and Anita Cobby come to mind when I think of this case. Not that either case was related but in that of multiple offenders being present in each case. It isn’t unheard throughout the history of criminology of lone serial killers being responsible of the murder of couples parked on lovers’ lanes but when armed with a knife it seems hard to believe he could have been able to maintain control without help.

It could also help to explain the varying victimology in this series. The leader of the group approaches as if he were a law enforcement officer before the rest of his accomplices appear to take control of the scene. Then the victims would be unable to escape such a horrific fate. Maybe a couple could overcome a lone offender armed with a knife but an offender carrying a knife yet accompanied multiple accomplices, would be too much for a lot of people to escape.

Another aspect where I disagree that the assessment that these cases were unrelated because the Thomas-Dowski case seemed to fit the hall marks of a hate crime. Personally, I have always thought that the motive of the suspect or suspects were that of hatred towards the couples and their romance. It had nothing to do with the gender of partners, but more of a seething rage towards those in relationships.

Thinking back to cases of Janine Balding and Anita Cobby, although both cases were unrelated I cannot help but wonder if these couples along the parkway fell victim to a group of predators perhaps seeking some kind of perverse thrill through these heinous acts. Evidence of sexual assault was not recorded perhaps the motive was that of pure violence and hatred towards the victims for the romance the offender or offenders perceived.

I’m no profiler or even a psychologist, my only background in the field is taking what is basically psychology 101 in high school. Still while, I see a connection geographically and circumstantially between these cases that drives my belief that this is a serial murder series. A suspect motivated by his or their hatred of romance perhaps because of a failed relationship in their own life. Maybe there were even more than two offenders.

Perhaps even a group of suspects. Both Janine Balding and Anita Cobby were separate and individual cases. Still both cases involved a pack mentality that left their victims defenseless. There are many more differences than similarities in these cases and realize that many may claim that I am grasping at straws in comparing them. Yet it would take multiple individuals to control their victims which is why I primarily make the comparison.

Going back to the recent arrest of the Golden State Killer and the theories that the Parkway killer was a Park Ranger or a Law Enforcement Official. Joe DeAngelo – the accused Golden State Killer worked as a Police Officer during in Auburn, California, approximately thirty miles away from Rancho Cordova where the first East Area Rapist attacks occurred.

While I’ve never been to the Parkway myself, from the videos and images I have seen it looks like it would have long stretches of the road that would be incredibly dark at night to the point that it would be incredibly hard to make out the vehicle tailing you or even sometimes oncoming in the opposite direction. In saying that I picture myself driving along the parkway or even parked in a secluded area and a vehicle approached from behind, much like the Zodiac Crimes also, by instinct I’d reach for my wallet to present my ID thinking it was some kind of law enforcement official.

Putting all these cases into perspective has me wondering if perhaps the perpetrator or perpetrators worked in a neighboring jurisdiction. In a time before the internet when many neighboring offices didn’t share information like they do today on cases and communication was primarily word of mouth, perhaps officials in other jurisdictions never got the information they needed to suspect one or even a few of the members of their department maybe involved.

Maybe even like DeAngelo in the later stages of the East Area Rapist crimes, after he was terminated by the Auburn Police Chief for shoplifting, there were officers fired in other jurisdictions nearby that with some digging my reveal a suspect. Perhaps someone or persons terminated for an unrelated offense that in later years make sense and connect them to this series.

I wish I could prove definitively that these cases are connected. But without DNA or perhaps a surviving victim to verify some the theories about this case. We may forever be left guessing as to what caused these young couples to be cutdown before they had entered the prime of their lives. I hope that much like the case of the East Area Rapist/Original Night Stalker/Golden State Killer, even if it takes decades to see a resolution this case will eventually see one…

Cathleen Thomas was found with a clump of hair in her hands and perhaps that holds the DNA evidence that may not lead directly to a suspect but at least can provide enough genealogy evidence that like the Golden State Killer can provide a final resolution to this mystery…

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The Case of Jennifer Kesse

Jennifer, Disappeared…

I can’t personally say that I’ve been to Orlando, Florida. But I’ve only heard good things about it. From Disneyworld to the Orlando Magic in their day with multiple great NBA Players as a basketball fan myself. But like any major city it isn’t immune to crime and on January 24th, 2006. A young woman by the name of Jennifer Kesse, originally from Tampa, disappeared after she had left work for the day.
Jennifer would be last seen on January 23rd at around 6pm at Westgate Resorts in Ocoee, Florida. In the following hours she would make several calls to friends and family, with the last being to her boyfriend at around 10pm. What happened after that, is as good as anybody’s guess. Come the next morning, the first signs that something wasn’t right would arise.
Come the morning of the 24th of January 2006, Jennifer would not send out a single message or call anyone she knew. She was known to contact her boyfriend every morning to wish him a good day as many couples do. After failing to arrive at work at the normal time, efforts to reach Jennifer proved to be fruitless and with good reason her friends and family began to worry.
Her Employer would reach out to her parents who would journey from hours away to begin the search for their missing daughter. When her parents arrived at her home, her vehicle was gone. Yet inside her condo they could not find anything that seemed out of place. All signs appeared as if she completed her morning routine and left for work.
As soon as that evening her friends and family began passing out Missing Persons fliers and with the help of the local Police Department, the search for Jennifer was underway. Air, Land and Sea, no resource was spared in trying to find the young lady. Everyone knew that if she was not going to show up to work at the very least, she would have given some kind of notice or explanation to cover her bases.
Still the search parties proved fruitless and no sign of Jennifer would be found. Given the available evidence of clothes scattered on her unmade bed and pajamas on the bathroom floor coupled with make-up and other grooming products on the counter. Her parents would urge the Condo Manager to use a set of extra keys to open her residence and that’s when they found her belongings scattered around.
To many it appeared that she had completed her morning routine and left for work but from there, the trail went cold. Jennifer’s parents would theorize that she may have had an argument with her boyfriend and would return soon, something thing that is common in missing persons cases. But she never came back and her friends and family would begin to use this condo as a base of operations over the following months.
After the first few days and the initial media coverage on Thursday, 26, 2006, the tenant of a nearby apartment complex who had been watching the recent news coverage of the story took notice a vehicle that matched the description of Jennifer’s and informed law enforcement of the vehicle. Unmoved after several days, investigators arrived and quickly photographed the vehicle before taking it for more thorough forensic testing.
However, the vehicle, a 2004 Black Chevy Malibu, would not be all that the investigators would find. During the neighborhood canvas, they would happen upon footage on a security camera of somebody parking Jennifer’s car and walking away from it without looking back. From there on out the trail would go cold. This would be the strongest lead that the investigators would have. Even with the help of NASA to enhance the footage, this person remains unidentified.
All that can be surmised in this case is that Jennifer left her apartment for work, locking the door on her way out and was abducted either while walking to her car or as she entered her car given the lack of evidence suggesting someone had broken into her apartment. A person of interest who returned her vehicle to her local area is all that investigators have to go on in this case.
It is worth noting that at the time of Jennifer’s disappearance her apartment complex was undergoing extensive construction and expansion operations at the time of her disappearance. Many of the crew members were undocumented at the time and as a result have been hard to track down since the time of her disappearance. Still at the time many of those workers were allowed to live in the complex while it was being constructed and have since raised the eyebrows of investigators considering that the figure spotted in the surveillance tapes is dressed like a construction worker.
Jennifer had told her family and friends that she had been experiencing harassment from the construction workers in the lead up to her disappearance. Authorities efforts to identify and interrogate the workers at the complex failed to generate any new leads. Failure in this area of her life would lead investigators to focus on her professional life and in there a new lead would arise.
Upon searching Jennifer’s computer, it would come to light that a co-worker who was in a management position at the resort that she was employed at had been making attempts to pursue a relationship. She had told those close to her that she was against workplace relationships, still after extensive questioning and investigation, they would conclude that this individual would not arise to the level of suspect. They would note that there is a slight chance that she had become a victim of human trafficking but it would be highly unlikely.
In 2007, her employer, lead by founder David A. Siegel would offer a million-dollar reward for information leading to her being found alive. Unclaimed to this day, another reward of five thousand dollars would be offered by the Central Florida Crime line for information leading to Jennifer’s remains being found.
However as of June 10th, 2010 the FBI has taken the lead in this ongoing investigation and if you feel as if you have information relevant to this case, please contact your local office. You may discount your assistance as being minimal but even the smallest detail may lead to a resolution in this case…

Mr Fisher, where art thou?

Mr Fisher, Where art thou?

I cannot understand what would drive a man, let alone a father of two to murder not only his wife but children too. This case to me will always leave more questions than answers until Mr. Fisher decides to either turn himself in or is caught by law enforcement. Even if he is caught, one can only wonder if he would cooperate and tell the story as to what was on his mind when he went down this dark path.

A fear of his children experiencing a divorce like he had and also a measure revenge from what ever feelings of hatred he had been festering towards his wife. All of this we can all assume built up over a given period of time leading to these violent crimes. It’s almost exactly like Yoda says in The Phantom Menace “Fear is the path to the dark side, Fear leads to anger, Anger leads to hate – Hate leads to suffering”.

My thoughts about where Robert Fisher may have fled to the mountains in Northern Arizona where he had some other means of travel after abandoning Mary’s Toyota 4Runner. It is worth noting that perhaps investigators did not search the cave network thoroughly enough and Robert may have escaped or died there. Maybe one day an innocent explorer will search these caves and his remains deep within the extensive cave network that exists.

Still I wonder how the family dog did not follow him after he exited the vehicle. Perhaps it was simply obedient when he told it to stay put and waited for him to return, or maybe he had some other means of escape pre-planned to further aid him in his flight from justice.

We know that he had already had one affair and Mary chose to give him a second chance but I wonder if it is possible if had others that never came to public light and one of them was waiting for him up in the mountains to aid in his escape. Many husbands promise lovers they will leave their wives and families for them and perhaps Robert Fisher held true to his word in a more sadistic manner than anyone imagined.

Perhaps worse, she knew all along what Robert was either planning or found out after the fact yet decided to overlook it and stay with him. Ted Bundy’s girlfriend when he was on trial for murder said that she would marry him, so it isn’t too much of a stretch to imagine that another woman felt the same way for Robert Fisher.

Yes of course he may have committed suicide and this is all speculation but this theory definitely has merit when it is well documented that women for whatever reason are attracted to men who have carried out acts of murder and even on multiple occasions. Ted Bundy isn’t the only popular case where this can be observed, the same thing occurred during the trial of Richard Ramirez and one could argue both were worse individuals than Robert Fisher as depraved as that may be.

But returning to the case in hand and after seventeen years on the run, Robert William Fisher has become the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s most wanted fugitive. We are still no closer to a resolution in this case and while it would not surprise me for his remains to one day be found in the mountains of Northern Arizona. But given his obvious sense of arrogance and superiority, I find it hard that after killing his family that he would take his own life.

I’m no psychiatrist but I just find it hard to grasp that a man rids himself of his biggest problem that he perceived in his life, only to end it shortly afterwards. To me personally, that makes no sense. If I think that highly of myself and I am out for to stick it to someone I despise as much as one can I assume he did Mary at the end, why not enjoy the freedom that I have created for myself as dark as that may sound.

Maybe it wasn’t the other woman that aided him in his escape, maybe it was a friend. Someone that was willing to accept the evil that this man committed whether it was to be with them even if he were simply using them to aid in his flight from justice. What I do not know however is would he have killed them also to cover the loose end this scenario would generate.

One day they might generate a conscience and decide to turn him in. As soon as he had developed a level of comfort in his escape from authorities then this person would have reached the end of their usefulness and perhaps Mr Fisher had done away with them also.

This is simply my thoughts on this matter and I sincerely hope that nobody else has become a victim of this man. I can only hope the Arizona elements claimed his life after he took the lives of his defenseless children who had their entire lives ahead of them. Ok, you’re afraid of them experiencing divorce like you did, that doesn’t give you the selfish right to prevent them from experiencing such an adversity and after all they may grow stronger because of it.

Even if you had grown to hate Mary, for what ever wrongs real or perceived that you could attribute to her. Why not just be the bigger individual and walk away rather than engage in primitive behavior? Your Children would still grow up and live out a full life, but thanks to your selfishness, they will never get that chance. The chance that all people deserve, to experience adversity and choose how they will let it affect them.

You chose to be weak, selfish and pathetic. Now all that we can hope for is that one day you will stand trial for the evil you chose to commit. Maybe the wild elements of Arizona saved the tax payers some money from having to prosecute this selfish coward and that an explorer with the right equipment will find whats left of you in the depths of a cave network and finally put an end to this matter.

But I cannot help shake the possibility that your cowardly being still walks this Earth thinking that you have escaped the grasp of law enforcement and judgement in this matter. One day you will slip in complacency and the answer the FBI or local law enforcement needs to capture you will present itself and this matter will finally be put to rest…

Link

Possibly the most famous cold case of all…

The case of the Zodiac Killer…

My next case?

Video

One of the three cases in this video might just be the next case I cover…