Valley News

November 16, 2006

Police Dive for Evidence Comes Up Empty

By Mark Davis

Pike, n.h.-- Police and a dive team spent three hours yesterday searching for "evidence" in the waters of an abandoned quarry on Lily Pond Road, less than a mile from a murder in September 2005 that remains unsolved.

Haverhill Police Chief Jeff Williams would not say for which investigation the search was executed, and declined to specify what kind of evidence police and the dive team were looking for.

"We're in the middle of an investigation," he said. "I can't tell you what we're investigating. It's a search for evidence."

Members of the New Hampshire Fish & Game Department and the Fire Marshal's Office were also at the abandoned slate quarry, immediately off the west side of Lily Pond Road, about two miles north of Route 25C.

Also there was Mike Conrad, whose brother, Tom, was shot dead on the porch of his home on Lily Pond Road on the night of Sept. 28. Authorities have declared his death a homicide but have charged no one and have released little information about their investigation.

Mike Conrad, who lived next door to his brother, said he was "interested" in yesterday's activities but referred questions to police.

Conrad spent several minutes talking with the Fish & Game divers, and said later he had told authorities of two more nearby quarries that could be searched.

Tomorrow would have been Tom Conrad's 56th birthday.

An underwater camera device, which Fish & Game officials likened to a "mini-submarine," returned images to a video monitor from beneath the water, 12 to 15 feet deep, but the water was too murky to see much, officials said.

Fish and Game officer Tom Dakai also dove into the quarry. "My eyes couldn't see anything once I got down there," Dakai said.

In addition to Conrad's death, one other Haverhill incident remains unsolved -- the disappearance of Maura Murray, the Massachusetts college student who crashed her car into a snowbank in February 2004 and has not been seen since.

Murray's father was at the New Hampshire Supreme Court Wednesday demanding that police turn over thousands of pages of documents from their investigation.

Conrad said that shortly after his brother died, he posted several notices with a picture of Tom and the message: "Do you know who murdered me?" including one nailed to a tree only yards from the quarry.

"The more people see it, then maybe they'll think of something and come forward," Mike Conrad said. "Police say it can't hurt."

Mark Davis can be reached at or (603) 727-3304.