The Caledonian-Record

June 29, 2004

Major Crimes Unit Involved - Maura Murray Case

Gary E. Lindsley

The New Hampshire State Police Major Crimes Unit is now involved in the disappearance of 22-year-old Maura Murray.

Murray, a University of Massachusetts at Amherst nursing student, has been missing since she was involved in a minor one-car accident the night of Feb. 9.

Her father, Fred, said the Major Crimes Unit earlier this month requested that everything present in Maura's black 1996 Saturn at the time of the accident be returned so a forensics investigation may be conducted.

At the time of the accident, Maura had about a week's worth of clothing, books for her college classes and diamond jewelry with her.

Everything in the car was turned over to family members after the accident.

The Major Crimes Unit only now asking for the items in Murray's car be returned is unsettling to her father.

"It's evidence Major Crimes was not involved until now," Murray said. "They sent (state trooper Todd) Landry to my daughter, Kathleen's (house).

"This is pretty sloppy," he continued. "For them to have told me they were treating this as a criminal investigation is a bunch of (expletive)."

Murray said, "So, it shows how amateurish this has been right from the beginning. They can't get away with this. They have to be held accountable."

Earlier this month, Murray requested a copy of the accident report and any other relevant information from the Haverhill Police Department and the state police.

To date, he has not received any response from Troop F, which is based in Twin Mountain.

However, he did receive a letter from Haverhill stating the request is being considered.

While Murray has faced frustration after frustration with New Hampshire State Police and Haverhill police regarding his daughter's disappearance, a northern Vermont family is receiving more communication from Vermont State Police looking into the disappearance of their 17-year-old daughter.

Brianna Maitland clocked out of work at the Black Lantern Inn at about 11:20 p.m. March 19.

Her car was found early the next morning partially ensconced in an abandoned building about a mile from the inn.

Brianna was headed home to her friend's home in Sheldon, where she had been living, when she disappeared.

Since the Maitlands met with Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie and Public Safety Commissioner Kerry Sleeper earlier this month, Bruce Maitland said there has been a big difference.

For one, police have discarded the runaway theory. And two, there is more communication.

"Ever since meeting with Dubie and Sleeper, things have turned around," he said.

However, Maitland also said there are no new leads.

"It's just like she has vanished right off the face of the earth," he said.

A vast network of friends is helping the Maitlands with sending out press releases across the country regarding Brianna's disappearance.

"If she's alive, we need your help," Maitland said, appealing to anyone who may be able to provide some information about Brianna.