01-30-2012, 05:37 PM #1Registered User
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ME - Ayla Reynolds timeline and media links *no discussion*
This thread is for timeline and media links for the Ayla Reynolds case. This is a *no discussion* thread. Thanks so much
01-30-2012, 08:37 PM #2
AYLA REYNOLDS TIMELINE, current as of 6pm JANUARY 30TH,2011.
LE Press Conferences/Statements:
PC Dec. 18th 2011
PC Dec. 19th 2011
not a full transcript:
Q: Friday night, one of the neighbors said she heard a motor vehicle pull up to the house late..but she didn't pay much attention to it..would that have been something that you have been looking into?
A: Yes. We've looked into all the information that has been passed onto us.
Q: So a motor vehicle did come to the house, late?
A: Yes. There was a neighbor that reported a motor vehicle outside..that is with the investigators right now.
Q: Do we know who was in that vehicle, what kind of vehicle it was, where it came from?
A: The only information I have is that a resident reported vehicle outside at some point. That has been forwarded to detectives and they are following up on it.
Q: Is this a missing person or is it an abduction?
A: It's a missing persons case.
Q: The father, Justin Dipietro, he lives at 29 Violette with his mother, correct?
Q: Okay, is he still in the area as far as you know, or is he...?
A: I'm not sure of his whereabouts at this time, I'm not sure if he is continued there or moved someplace else.
Q: At what point will the family be allowed back into the house?
A: I'm not sure. That would be up to the folks who are actually at the house.
Q: Who is at the house right now? No one in the family is allowed to be at the house right now? Is the house closed off, just investigators right now?
Q: How long do you think that is going to be?
A: Again, I'd have to speak to those investigators that are there. I'm not sure.
Q: The search that is going on right now, is that along the banks of the river or divers in the river? How do you see that transpiring over the next day or so?
A: The search today was along the banks. Let me defer to Lt. Adams, uh, confined to the banks?
Adams: To the banks, yes sir.
Q: That is still going on right now?
Q: Where does the mother live?
A: I don't think she has a permanent address.
Q: But is she homeless? Does she live with a relative?
A: I believe that she was staying with relatives, yes.
PC Dec. 20th 2011
PC Dec. 21st 2011
not a full transcript:
Chief: Let me start off by talking about Justin Dipietro's statement that he gave to investigators sometime around mid afternoon yesterday. That was eventually filtered out to the command staff in the early evening hours. There was a decision made to go ahead and release Justin Dipietro's statement to the Waterville Morning Sentinel. I understand there's been some concerns and issues about that, we talked about that today and we will certainly change that to make sure that in the future that type of information gets filtered on to all of you.
We continue to receive leads. We have approximately 165 leads that have come in since we started the investigation. That has been keeping investigators very very busy, as you might imagine.
A couple of other area's that we've expanded on the search for the Warden service: we've searched the Kennebec River, we are currently searching the Kennebec River, from the Waterville Winslow Bridge south. We've also expanded our search to a small pond on the 1st Range way, that pond was pumped down by the Waterville Fire Department, obviously we could see the bottom of it. We are also in the process of searching some trails off from Kennedy Memorial Drive across from Shaw's Plaza.
There are approximately 80 searchers. We have about 50 of those folks who are from the Maine Association of Search and Rescue. They are civilians but they have a lot of training in search and rescue. They work hand and hand with the Warden Service when they are required. We have about 15 firefighters, more than a dozen Wardens and we also have Marine Patrol that are joining us today and they are providing a search of the river with their boats.
These searches are in places where we would logically want to go ahead and search based on their location. We want to rule out every possible area that we can in our efforts to find Ayla. That is our focus, that is our goal, that is our aim, we are not going to lose focus of that. We are going to continue this investigation until we locate her.
Q: Was Justin Dipietros statement given to you by him or by his attorney?
A: That was given to investigators by Justin.
Q: I received a call yesterday from a woman in a southern state saying that she thought she had spotted Ayla in a hospital waiting room and she said she has contacted police. Are you familiar with what I'm talking about?
A: I am not, but I am not aware of every lead that comes in. Those are filtered down to all the investigators and I don't necessarily see every single lead. We may have gotten it, it may have been looked at, and acted on. I don't know.
Q: Is it true that you told Trista Reynolds not to search, and has Justin Dipietro and his family expressed an interest in searching to police?
A: I personally do not have any information that she has asked to participate in the searches, nor do I have any information that Justin has.
Q: Would you have given them permission? Is that something you would know about if it happened?
A: Not necessarily. We have talked to the family, and as I said the family continues to be fully cooperative. If they at some point had offered that to investigators, I'm not sure.
Q: Would they be allowed to?
A: Uh, when we do a search, we determine the type of searchers that we need. In some areas, we need the specialized training that I talked about these folks have today. In other searches, we ask for volunteers, and we go ahead and coordinate that. That's something that the search coordinator would make some determination on.
PC Dec.22nd 2011
PC summary by Becky Sawtelle/Staff WMTV
Chief Joseph Massey said state police are at the home searching.
The crime lab truck has been brought in.
Massey said cadaver dogs have been brought in.
When asked why the attorney general's office was at the home, Massey said it is because they needed the opportunity to search the home.
Massey once again is saying the family is cooperating
Massey said no one has taken a lie detector test.
Massey said water searches are still taking place.
Massey said the FBI isn't planning any more "knock and talks" at this time.
Massey continues to say this is a missing child case.
Massey said the vehicles that were towed from the home will soon be returned.
When asked if Justin DiPietro is out searching for his daughter, Massey said he doesn't know where he is.
He said that people shouldn't be alarmed that crime scene tape has been placed around the home. That people shouldn't "read too much into it."
Maine Police Chief: Someone Took Missing Toddler - YouTube
~~i cannot find raw video link to PC on this date, only this short clip. see press release from 26th~~
Jan.11th 2012 PC
not a full transcript:
Q: Are you operating under the assumption that Ayla is alive, or..? It's been three weeks, it is not likely she is alive.
Lt.Adam: Any scenario is a possibility. Okay. So we are looking at all scenarios. Okay. So, anything is a possibility. Okay. Nothing has been ruled out.
Q: You did notify Justin that you would be searching today is that correct? and said "not to be alarmed", is that a fair assessment?
A: I know Justin knew that we were going to dive today.
Q: The DiPietros said that they were advised by police to not discuss details with the media, is that correct?
Steve McCausland: Let me clarify that. Um, very early on in the investigation, in the first couple of days, we asked the principals involved not to speak to the media until we had a chance to talk with them firsthand. And they've all cooperated, they were all interviewed, and then I think there was a misunderstanding on their part that that was sort of like a permanent ban on talking to the media. It is not. We informed both Justin and his mother last night, both of which who have cited in some recent broadcast, uh, reports that police had asked them not to get into any details. Uh, we have clarified that with them, that we encourage them to talk to the media. Um, to keep this story of Ayla in the headlines. What better people to do that than her immediate family? And, we are encouraging all of the family members, both here in Waterville and in southern Maine, to keep her story in the forefront, and to keep her name in the headlines. I hope that has clarified that aspect.
Q: You processed that house for several weeks, when do you expect to get the results back from the crime lab?
S: Many of the- all of the items that were taken from the home are being analyzed at the state police crime lab in Augusta, uh, some of the preliminary information has already started to come forward to investigators. More work remains to be done. Details are not something we are going to get into, but that flow of information from the crime lab has begun.
Q: Police have said in the past that the immediate family is cooperative, would that still be a fair assessment?
S: The question is whether the family continues to cooperate, the answer is absolutely. They have done everything we have asked them to do. They have been available every time we have had a question. They have been available to have whatever interaction with us, and that continues.
Q: If you can't say who was in the house that night, can you share the number of adults and if they were there all night?
S: Um, there were three adults, and two children in the house. We stated that very early on. Not getting into any details as to who those people are.
Q: Do you feel you are closer to solving this case today than you were 4 weeks ago?
S: Uh, we, we are making progress. I can tell you honestly that as the days go on our concern grows, as it's been 26 days, but I can also tell you that we remain hopeful that we will bring her back to her home. And, all the efforts that the chief mentioned, that Lt.Adam mentioned, have gone into that task.
LE Press Releases:
Waterville Police Chief Joseph Massey would like to announce that there will not be a press conference scheduled for today, December 23rd. The Waterville Police Department will issue informational releases regarding the search for Ayla Reynolds as appropriate and necessary today and through the weekend. In the event that future press conferences are scheduled, the Police Department will make the date, time and location available.
This morning's snowfall has hampered our ability to conduct large-scale search operations. Today, teams of Wardens from the Maine Warden Service will conduct searches targeted by detectives as necessary.
Detectives from the Waterville Police Department and Maine State Police, as well as Special Agents from the FBI will continue their investigation into the circumstances surrounding Ayla's disappearance, to include the painstaking review of an unprecedented amount of information which has been gathered to date. During the weekend, investigators will continue to work on this case. Timely follow-up of any leads and any developments in the ongoing case will occur. We continue to encourage members of the public to contact our department with any information which may lead detectives to Ayla's location.
Waterville Police Chief Joseph Massey - whose agency is investigating the disappearance of 20-month old Ayla Reynolds from her home at 29 Violette Avenue - with assistance from the Maine State Police, Maine Warden Service and the FBI, said today that "our work continues on Christmas Eve. As we recently stated, over the past seven days our investigators have gathered an incredible amount of information that we need to assimilate as we work to find Ayla. Our team of investigators and searchers have spent the past week working in the glaring spotlight of national attention that has rightly focused on the tragic event which befell Ayla and her family on December 17th. Now, detectives need the opportunity to continue their work for a few days outside of the microscope.
Our agency has received hundreds of leads, many of which have been investigated and some of which are being investigated at this time. We anticipate that the intense interest and media coverage of this case will generate additional leads - this assistance from the public is greatly appreciated, and we hope it continues.
The outpouring of support from not only the greater Waterville area, but from across the nation and around the world has served to buoy the spirits of searchers, detectives and support personnel. Many local residents have donated food, have offered to help search, and the public safety personnel working to find Ayla are continuously stopped by folks, who offer their thoughts, prayers, and words of appreciation. These sentiments help more than you can know.
We are committed to utilize all resources available. We would like to stress that this is still a very active investigation, and we will not cease our efforts until Ayla is located."
Today at 3PM, Police Chief Joseph Massey held a press conference to discuss a new citizen-led initiative geared toward encouraging people who may have information regarding the whereabouts of missing toddler Ayla Reynolds to cooperate with police. Chief Massey explained that over the Christmas weekend, he was contacted by several individuals who wanted to offer a cash reward for information leading to the location of Ayla Reynolds. Chief Massey and local attorney John Nale met and discussed the best way to organize the effort. "I was astounded to learn that a number of private citizens had already approached Mr. Nale and that the total amount of reward money being offered was $30,000. I am very hopeful that the offer of a large monetary reward may serve to spur someone to make the phone call we desperately want to receive - the call that will lead us to Ayla Reynolds."
John Nale, attorney at Nale Law Offices, spoke briefly at the press conference this afternoon, saying, "I am here on behalf of the greater Waterville area community. And on behalf of the greater Waterville area community, I ask and I plead that the person or persons who have young Ayla Reynolds, that they please keep her safe and return her safely to us. And further, on behalf of the people of the greater Waterville community and through the generosity, support and kindness of a number of individuals and businesses in the area, I offer a $30,000 reward to the person or persons who provide us with information leading to the location and return of this young girl to us."
In addition to news about the reward being offered, Chief Massey also disclosed several additional pieces of information about the investigation. "Work to find Ayla continued over the weekend. Investigators sorted through leads as they came in. Some of those leads, we believe, were prompted by coverage of this case that aired on a segment of the TV show "America's Most Wanted" over the weekend. For some of our investigators, their Christmas holiday was very short as they worked the case through the weekend."
Chief Massey also stated that "at this point in the investigation, we are very confident that Ayla did not let herself out of the house at 29 Violette Avenue. We believe that someone removed Ayla from the house, and that is where our investigation is focusing. I don't want to speculate beyond that, because we do not know who took Ayla out of that house and under what circumstances she was removed. In most missing person cases, the longer the investigation goes on the more concerned we become that we can find the person safe - particularly when the case involves the most vulnerable members of our community such as children and seniors."
Chief Massey also spoke briefly about the massive amount of media attention this case has rightly drawn, and explained that due to the level of interest and the volume of requests he has received for individual interviews, he will not be able to satisfy those requests and will continue to release information to the public through pre-announced press conferences and releases. "I appreciate all that you do," said Chief Massey, speaking to members of the media, "and that is the important job of reporting the news to the public."
The investigation into the disappearance of Ayla Reynolds continues today, 11 days after she was reported missing from her home at 29 Violette Avenue. Since December 17th, investigators and searchers from the Maine Warden Service are estimated to have worked in excess of 5,000 hours in an effort to locate Ayla.
To date, we have received approximately 330 leads from people who believe they have information to offer. These leads have poured in from around the nation, including several from as far away as California. Our detectives are working to thoroughly investigate these leads, requesting assistance from investigators across America when necessary. This has truly become a national effort. Of the 330 leads, approximately 100 of those leads have been received since we made the public announcement yesterday that a group of private citizens and businesspeople in the Waterville area are offering a $30,000 cash reward for information leading to the location and return of Ayla to her family.
Yesterday, we released information that at this point in the investigation we have concluded that Ayla did not leave her home on her own. In missing child investigations - most of which are thankfully resolved rapidly and successfully - police immediately conduct a thorough search of the child's residence. Most children are located hiding somewhere in or around the home. This was not the case with Ayla. We initiated an intensive, thorough and exhaustive search in and around Ayla's home - to include the use of numerous police canines - with no success. One of the canines and it's handler responded shortly after Ayla was reported missing - we knew that time was of the essence and none was wasted.
In addition to our professionally conducted and thorough search, there are other factors which lead us to discount the likelihood that Ayla walked away from her own home. Since December 17th, we have become very familiar with the interior layout of the house at 29 Violette Avenue. Based on our knowledge of the interior of the house and the sequence of events that would have needed to occur for her to make it outside on her own, we feel comfortable that we can eliminate that possibility and focus on other possibilities. In addition, Ayla's small stature, injured arm and mobility (she was a toddler, having recently learned to walk) make such a scenario even more far fetched.
Today, ground searches continue as investigators go about their work to piece together the circumstances surrounding Ayla's disappearance. All four agencies that initially responded to find Ayla - Waterville Police, State Police, the Maine Warden Service, and the FBI - are all still hard at work and their commitment is undiminished.
As the investigation into the disappearance of Ayla Reynolds nears the end of Day 12, the Maine Warden Service is completing the last of their large-scale search operations. Over the past 12 days, members of the Warden Service, Waterville and Winslow Fire and Rescue, members of the Maine Association of Search and Rescue (MASAR) and other public safety officials have conducted a large number of ground searches and water searches, to include numerous examinations of the rivers in Waterville by the Warden Service plane. Many of these searches, particularly near the residence of 29 Violette Avenue, have been repeated in order to make sure that no evidence of Ayla's disappearance would be missed. In addition to the area searches, Wardens have also conducted a large number of targeted searches based on tips received from the media and based on direction from investigators.
The Maine Warden Service will continue to be available to the Waterville Police and State Police as the investigation moves ahead. Colonel Joel Wilkinson and his agency have been an incredibly valuable resource and the Wardens conducting these searches have done some of the hardest work in this effort. Colonel Wilkinson assures us that his agency will continue to make his personnel available as necessary to execute future searches. Our gratitude for their assistance is immense.
As of this afternoon, our department has received a total of approximately 370 leads, which have been assigned to detectives for follow-up.
Because of our commitment to conduct this investigation in a way that will assure us the highest possible chance of successfully locating Ayla, the agencies involved have been exceedingly cautious about releasing investigative details to the public. Although we fully understand and appreciate the public's desire to "know what we know" about the case, we will continue to release only that information which is appropriate based on the direction of the investigation, and at a time when we are confident that such release will not compromise our progress.
This afternoon, Justin Dipietro provided our investigators with a second written statement that he requested we release to the media. Mr. Dipietro's statement is attached to this press release.
Two full weeks have passed since Ayla Reynolds was reported missing from her home at 29 Violette Avenue in our city. Since receiving the initial report, investigators and searchers have spent many thousands of hours looking for Ayla, and gathering and evaluating evidence which we believe will ultimately result in the successful conclusion of this investigation.
At this point, we believe that foul play has occurred in connection with Ayla's disappearance. We base our conclusions on evidence gathered by investigators during the past two weeks. This case has evolved from the search for a missing child to a criminal investigation. For this reason, I have asked the Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit to assume the lead role as this investigation progresses. The men and women of the Waterville Police Department will continue to work cooperatively with the State Police and other agencies on this case until Ayla is located. Our commitment to finding Ayla and explaining the circumstances surrounding her disappearance is as strong as it was on December 17th. I am tremendously proud of the effort that every member of the Waterville Police Department has contributed to this case, and we look forward to a continued productive and successful partnership with the State Police, Warden Service, and the FBI.
Every investigator involved in this case shares the hope of Ayla's family and the public that Ayla will be located soon. The reward offered by a group of anonymous private citizens and businesspeople is still valid, and anyone who has information that will lead us to Ayla are encouraged to call the Waterville Police Department at 207-680-4700, or the Maine State Police at 207-624-7076.
Any future dissemination of information will come from the Maine State Police. There will no longer be periodic releases of information by the Waterville Police Department relative to this case. Future media inquiries related to this criminal investigation should be directed to Department of Pubic Safety Spokesman Stephen McCausland at 207-626-3811.
January 26 quoted from article:
Police have denied a request by the Morning Sentinel for an audio recording and written transcript of the 911 call that reported 21-month-old Ayla Reynolds missing, saying it could get in the way of the investigation.
January 28, 2012 more@link:
Maine State Police have now confirmed blood was found in the basement of the home at 29 Violette Ave.
State police spokesman Steve McCausland says the blood was found in the basement early in the investigation into Ayla Reynolds' disappearance from her father's home in Waterville.
January 28, 2012 more@link:
Police said the adults told them "someone snuck into the house, went into the bedroom where Ayla was sleeping, and no one heard or saw anything." Yet "there is no evidence that we have found that would point to an abduction," said the state spokesman.
"Their story ... doesn't pass the 'straight-face' test in Maine," McCausland said.
"We don't know what happened other than we know Ayla didn't walk out on her own, and we have grave doubts she was abducted because there were three adults in the home that night (and) it's a very small house."
Jan 30, 2012 quoted from article more@link:
Steve McCausland said Sunday night said that testing has revealed that at least some of the blood samples that were found in the home during a December search belong to Ayla.
"The testing has not been completed and more work remains, but we have found samples of Ayla's blood," he said.
Last edited by KateB; 04-04-2015 at 07:03 PM. Reason: repair url tag.
01-30-2012, 08:38 PM #3
TR and Family Statements w/transcripts:
Dec.18th 2011 clips with family members.
RR: Oh, man, what I'm going through right now is..I want to go there, I want to search, I want to just go up there and search, and stay up all night to do whatever I need to do but the police are telling me to let them do their job.
Um, does somebody have her in a car? I, I mean, is she dead?
Ayla's aunt: This is type of thing that I watch on the news, I never thought, in a million years thought, that my sister or anyone that close to me would be dealing with this. I just want my niece to be found, that's all we can hope for at this point.
Raw video interview TR Dec.19th 2011
TR: I guess there is, everyone is over there right now..and I just, I guess I just want to like, I want to pick her up and I want to hold her. And I just want to tell her like, she's going to be okay. And I just, I want to see her face. I want to see her eyes. I want to feel her touch. I want to tell her I love her and I feel like I can't protect her right now and I thought by me letting her go with her father and by me keeping her there for as long as she has been that it was the safest place for her to be because I knew that I wasn't able to take care of her but now I'm so wrong.
Like, since she's been there she got a broken arm, she's ended up missing, you know what I mean, and I wasn't trying to be secretive by going to the courts. I just, I didn't want to fight with him anymore. Like, me and her father have been fighting constantly and just..I didn't want to fight no more. I was tired of getting my hopes up that my daughter was going to get to come spend the night or even a weekend with me. And then when he wouldn't show with her..you know what I mean? Like..
Reporter: Plus you're in two far apart towns..
TR: Right. Like..she's all the way in Waterville and I'm here and there is nothing I can do right now. Except for sit here and put it out there that I hope that they find her. And I hope she is safe. And I hope she's okay, but like, my biggest fear is that she's all alone and she's scared..and she ain't got nobody to turn to. And I'm her mother, I'm supposed to be protecting her. There are other people out there looking for her, and not me. I should be in Waterville right now searching for my daughter but nobody will let me be there. Waterville PD are telling me I can't be there.
Reporter: Why is that?
TR: I don't know, they just keep saying like "interfere interfere" interfere with what? Like, you..there is an amazing woman out there that I wish I knew her name, I've seen her come up on TV, talking the same thing, you know, like, has Ayla eaten? Is she okay? I mean, like, this lady, she has her own family and she has sent her own kids with her mother so she could go search for my daughter. Like, I thank that woman right now for what she is doing because I can't be there.
Reporter: What if you went up there, like what are they gonna do?
TR: That's what I'm wondering like, what are they gonna do? My whole family is ready to go up there and do our own little search. But it's like, if the dogs can't even sniff her out from the outside, then where is she? If she's not outside, then who has her? Where is she?
Reporter: First there is the abduction theory, and then you hear people are pointing fingers, you're a suspect, he is a suspect, everybody is a suspect now. What really in your heart of hearts tells you happened here? Apparently he had some people over, somebody he didn't know or..?
TR: Uh, I'm really starting to believe that he has done something with my daughter. I'm really starting to feel that, as a mother, that somebody in his family or himself has done something with Ayla. And if he has, all he's gotta do is come out and just say it. Know what I mean? Just come out and talk to me. Just tell me where she is. Because I want to know where she is. I haven't seen her in over a month and then this is what happens? Like I can't..
clip with TR Dec. 19th 2011
Reporter: From the kitchen table at her fathers house in Portland, TR says she hasn't slept since the call on Saturday, that her 20 month old baby named Ayla was missing from a Waterville home where she stayed with the father, JD. Reynolds says the couple, who were never married, had no legal custody arrangement, but they did have an agreement. Including around the time Trista was in rehab.
TR: The agreement was, was that if he took Ayla, if I let him take care of Ayla for the time being, for me to get back on my feet, he had to live with his mother because I thought it would have been the safest place for her to be. And..I was wrong.
WMTV RR interview Dec.19th 2011:
Q: People are pointing fingers at the family..
A: Exactly, I mean, no no no no, see, what you don't understand is, my granddaughter wasn't with us. She was with her father, and has been. Where is my granddaughter? I'll keep saying it until I get closure. Where is my granddaughter? I want her home! Do people not understand that? I want her home and I thank everybody that is out there right now. The state police, the FBI, everybody that is involved, I thank them from the bottom of my heart. This whole thing is just tearing me up..I just..I want her home. I want answers. I want something...just..And if he did have something to do with it, god dammit, say something, come forth and say something, somebody say something out there, somebody knows something about my granddaughter. Okay. The poor helpless little thing right now, she is out there somewhere. She's scared. And I can't do nothing. All I can do is support my family, support my daughter..this whole thing is tearing me up..
Just let me, I'll go to his house. I'll knock on his door. I'll ask him face to face if it comes down to it, where's my granddaughter? But I know what will happen if I go there..I know exactly what will happen.
Q: You'll get arrested.
Dec.19th 2011 quoted from article:
Whitney Raynor, her mother’s stepsister, said Monday that welfare agents had placed Ayla with her father in November while the mother was in rehab for substance abuse. The girl had bruises after being in her father’s care, Raynor said, in addition to a broken arm three weeks ago.
“Our biggest fear is that he lost his temper and something happened. We’re trying not to think about that, but in the back of our minds it’s our biggest fear,” Raynor said from Portland, where Ayla’s mother, Trista Reynolds, lives.
Dec.19th 2011 quoted from article:
The toddler had lived in Portland with her mother and grandmother until mid-October, said Becca Hanson, Ayla’s grandmother. The grandparents, who are not married and have separate addresses, said Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services had removed Ayla from her mother’s care in October. The maternal grandparents criticized the agency, although no details about the action were available Sunday.
Hanson was staying with Ayla’s mother, Trista Reynolds, in a South Portland motel Sunday as the search continued in Waterville.
“This is the worst thing of all because she doesn’t know where her daughter is at,” Hanson said. “I’m hoping that they call us soon and say they found her.”
Hanson said Trista Reynolds was not able to talk to the media. Trista Reynolds also has a 9-month-old son who is living with her at the South Portland motel, Hanson said.
Ayla’s grandparents described her as a bright, happy girl.
“Ayla started walking when she was 10 months old,” Hanson said. “She’s a really outgoing child. She always had a smile on her face.”
Ayla loves her little brother, Hanson said. “She tries to give him his bottle and his binky. They’re like two peas in a pod.”
Dec. 19th 2011 ABC interview with TR
TR: He would help me out, he'd take care of her until I was on my feet. We've been unable to actually get along the last few weeks and "parent" together.
Reporter: Reynolds said she filed paperwork on Thursday to get full custody of the toddler, one day before Ayla went missing, but says she hadn't told Ayla's father.
TR: He didn't know I went to file them. He'll know now but I haven't told him and no one told him.
Reporter: Reynolds says she hasn't spoken to Ayla's father Justin since their daughter disappeared.
TR: I've had no contact with him. He's had no contact with me. Like, all I know is he's the last man to see my daughter and all I want to know is where she is.
RR: I want Ayla home with her family. With her mother, with her Pop Pop, with her Grandmother, with all of us. I want her home, I want her safe. And I pray right now that she is safe.
Dec.19th 2011 NECN interview with TR. The video at this link is changed, it
no longer shows the same video, but I transcribed the video before it was deleted.
Reporter: Trista Reynolds says her 20 month old daughter is bright, fun, talkative, and energetic. Not knowing where she is or what has happened to her is heart wrenching.
TR: It's killing me. Every minute and every hour and every second that is going by and there's nothing about her, it's hurts.
Reporter: Reynolds, who has never lived with Ayla's father, says she is angry that this happened on his watched. Asked if she thought he would ever hurt their daughter...
TR: I don't know, like, I barely know who Justin is. We've never been in a relationship. I want to believe that no, he wouldn't hurt my daughter, but if he did...he just needs to tell me. But I feel deep down inside that..he didn't hurt her but I do think he did something with her.
Reporter: Trista Reynolds is holding out hope and praying for her daughters dafe return.
TR: I am praying that the next phone call or the next knock that I get coming at my door, they're gonna say, I want you to come with me cause we got your daughter.
Dec.20th2011 AP interview with TR and RR:
RR: I'm angry, okay? I'm angry because she's out there somewhere.
TR: Just bring her home. You know what I mean? Just, just bring her home, cause she's got a loving brother who hasn't seen her, a mother who misses her dearly.
TR: Any normal, decent parent checks on their child a couple times throughout the night. Well, I do. I did. From the time my kids go down to bed, I will check on them until I lay down.
RR: I mean, I can't, I don't eat. I don't sleep. I mean, last night was probably around midnight that I finally ate.
Dec. 20th 2011 short quotes from TR.
TR: I just want answers. I just want to know where my daughter is. And who she may be with. Just bring her home.
Reporter: At around 8 oclock on Friday night, Justin Dipietro, Ayla's father, says he put the toddler to bed. When he went to check on her Saturday morning, he says she was gone. He's had custody of Ayla since child welfare agents placed her with him in November, while Reynolds was in rehab for substance abuse. During that time, Ayla's mom said she became concerned when she saw bruises, and confronted him.
TR: He said well, you know, her and my niece like to go down on the stairs. Like, it could be from that. I just..I didn't believe it.
Dec.20th quoted from article:
Welfare agents had placed Ayla with her father weeks ago while her mother, Trista Reynolds, was in rehab for substance abuse, Reynolds' stepsister Whitney Raynor said Monday. The toddler's maternal grandmother, Becka Hanson, told the Morning Sentinel newspaper it was the Department of Health and Human Services that took custody of the girl and turned her over to DiPietro.
After moving in with her father, the toddler suffered a broken arm, said Raynor, who serves as spokeswoman for the Portland family, which has sought to regain custody of the girl.
JR and TR quotes from article Dec.21st2011
Reynolds and her older sister, Jessica, were staying in a hotel Tuesday to keep away from the media frenzy.
"I'm watching my sister fall to pieces," Jessica Reynolds said. "I don't think she has any tears left to cry."
Trista Reynolds told The Associated Press that she and DiPietro never lived together as a couple. But Reynolds said a drinking problem prompted her to enter rehabilitation in Lewiston for 10 days in October; she said that although her mother and older sister cared for Ayla during that time, child welfare agents intervened to place the girl with DiPietro.
RR: If Ayla can hear me, Ayla..if you can hear papa, we're coming to get you, girl. I swear to God, we're gonna find you, and we're gonna bring you home Ayla okay? Because it's all about you Ayla. It's not about anybody else, it's about Ayla. And let the police do their investigation and everything else, but I want my Ayla home. I want my baby home with us, you know. Somebody knows something.
Dec.23rd2011 TR Today Show interview
TR: I just want her home and I'm hoping for..maybe my Christmas present, that'll be it, that she's gonna come home.
I trusted him to keep her safe, and now she is missing and I don't know where she is, and I blame him right now because he did not protect her the way that he was supposed to.
Q: What are police telling you about the investigation right now?
TR: Nothing. No clues, not at all. Everything I'm hearing I'm hearing from uh, news reporters, broadcastings, yeah. I'm just like everybody else out there right now. I'm not hearing from any detective, any state police, nothing. Just what I hear on the news.
Q: Let's go back to the last contact you had with Ayla's father, JD. He is cooperating with police, as you saw, he released that short statement and said he has no idea what happened to Ayla. But, you checked in with him a week ago when he was supposed to take Ayla to a doctor's appointment to check her broken arm. What happened?
TR: I uh, had reached out to him on Thursday, the 15th, to see if he was definitely still coming on Friday, and he told me he was definitely not coming, and that was the last that I had spoken with Justin.
Q: And then Ayla had disappeared, as you had found out, have you heard from Justin since?
TR: I have not.
Q: And Justin says he put Ayla to bed at 8pm that night, Thursday night, into Friday, and he checked her bed at 8am. Timeline, here, is very important as you know in a missing person's case. You have told us that Justin would apparently always check in on Ayla, before he would go to bed. Do you have any reason to believe that he didn't, in fact, do that?
TR: Uh, I don't know in this case right now, but yeah, he's told me numerous times before he'd go to bed he'd check on her. Why would this one time would you not check on her? So I'm not sure, like..
Q: There's a lot of questions and speculation about the custody situation, I know that Ayla was put into, by child protective services, into custody, uh, Justin got custody of Ayla in October...
TR: He did not get custody of Ayla.
Q:...temporary custody in October? He did not?
TR: No, he did not, no, he did not.
Q: Why was she in his care?
TR: Nothing stating..Because Department of Health and Human Services violated my rights. That is why she ended in Justin's care. There was no court order, there was no nothing that had to do with any custody at all. None, whatsoever.
Q: Did you file for sole custody though, the couple of days before she disappeared?
TR: On Thursday, yeah, I went to Portland courthouse and I filed for parental rights and responsibilities.
Q: And did you have any reason to believe that Justin was not being a caring parent to Ayla?
TR: Um, I don't think we was not a non-caring parent..I just..I just think the way he was going about things was just wrong, by lots of ways and I mean, just, after a while of not hearing from her and not being able to see her, a mother is going to get suspicious. And that's..I started getting very suspicious of um, what was going on.
TR: And uh, could I just uh, thank everyone out there for um, you know, especially the mothers, you know, mother to mother who's uh, out searching for my daughter and who has you know, been there, looking and not giving up and giving their prayers.
Dec.24th2011 snipped from article
Becca Hanson, Ayla’s grandmother, also asked that her daughter, Trista Reynolds, be left alone for a couple of days.
“She’s really tired,” Hanson said of Ayla’s mother, who gave interviews on several national news programs last week.
Hanson said she believed Reynolds was planning to do something special in Ayla’s honor on Christmas Day, but did not know what it was.
“It’s going to be a hard day for her,” she said.
Dec.29th2011 TR on Today Show
Q: What are police telling you?
TR: Uh, the same thing that I hear on the news. Um..but they, they'll kind of call me now first before I hear it on the news, but it's the same thing. That they're still investigating, they're still where we were 13 days ago.
Q: Ayla was with her father when she was last seen. He has not spoken publicly but he did release a statement through the police. Do you think that JD has anything to do with your daughters disappearance?
TR: I don't know. Part of me feels yes and a part of me feels no. It's just...
Q: Explain the part of you that feels yes?
TR: Just..you know, like, he says he's not in hiding, but why won't he come out? Why won't he talk to me? Why..why is he staying away? You know, like, just, what is he so afraid of to not come out or to talk to me?
Q: We should mention that in a lot of these situations in the past, parents do come forward and go on television but it is every ones right not to do that. And in his statement he says "It is important that the people hear it from me personally that I have no idea what happened to Ayla and that I am not hiding. I have been in full cooperation with everyone in this effort, including not adding additional media hype." Your response to that?
TR: I don't got one. I'm still in shock with what he wrote, like what he put out in his statement.
Q: What really got my attention on this, Trista, last night, was that you and he have not spoken since your daughter disappeared. You've tried to call him..
Q: He has not responded to your calls..
Q: Have you tried to get the police to act as intermediaries, create some sort of dialogue between you two?
TR: Yep. I've asked that question and they tell me that it's between me and him. Like, it's on me and him to contact one another.
Q: I would think, as a police officer investigating this, you'd want to see the parents interacting at least maybe to observe it. But they..
Q: They've offered no opportunity for you to be in contact with your daughter's father?
Q: Um, a little background on your relationship with Justin, according to you, you and Justin had an agreement that he would take care of Ayla while you were in rehab back in October.
TR: That's right.
Q: Other reports suggest that CPS gave Justin temporary custody of Ayla. I don't think you agree with that. But, after you got out of rehab, a month went by where you never saw Ayla, why?
TR: No, I had went like two and a half weeks without seeing her when I first got out of rehab, and then after, um, like the first week of November, I didn't see her again until the 21st of November. And then after the 21st of November I did not see her again.
Q: Have you been critical of Justin's parenting? Do you worry that she was not safe in his care?
Q: For what reason?
TR: Just..you know, just for the reasons like he would never let me see her. I would call to talk to her and he'd get mad about it. I mean like, if I did see her and I would notice something on her like a bruise or just, something, he, instead of like, reacting in a calm manner he would lash out about it, or kind of like, go into defense.
Q: I have to ask you at the end here. You filed for sole custody of Ayla the day before she disappeared, did you have anything to do with her disappearance? Or did you send anyone up to that house to take your baby back?
TR: No. And I didn't file for sole custody. All I filed for was parental rights and responsibilities. That's it. It wasn't sole custody.
Q: If you could speak to Justin right now what would you say to him?
TR: Just come talk to me. Like, just talk to me. You know, like, he's the only one that can answer some of my questions. You know, like, we have a daughter that is missing. We used to be able to get along all the time. Just talk to me. That's all I want, just..he was the last one to see her alive. Like, just talk to me. That's all I want. Just talk to me.
Jan.2nd2012 short statement from Trista in today show video:
Late last night, Trista Reynolds issued the following statement exclusively to the Today Show, she says: When I found out from Law Enforcement that this has become a criminal investigation, I got chills up and down my spine, but I am keeping my faith. I am not giving up.
Jan.2nd2012 RR responds to JD's today show interview:
RR: How can you not be out there in the publics eye? How can you not want the media to have contact with you? I just..no, I'm not buying it, and I don't care what he says. I don't care what he says. And I'll tell him right to his face, right now.
RR: Who was there? Do you have any idea, in your mind, who may have taken your daughter, my granddaughter?
Jan.10th TR Today show:
Q: Since your daugher disappeared he father had not spoken to you. I understand you have now actually had a conversation, what can you share about that?
TR: Justin and I have spoken. We talked about Ayla and wanting to see her come home soon.
Q: Are you more comfortable with his side of the story after speaking to him than you were during the time he wouldn't talk to you?
Q: That's not a rave review. What makes you suspicious about Justin?
TR: Just why after, you know, so many weeks, he's finally wanting to come out here and you know, put up posters and get like, T-shirts made for her and you know, just, like, why? I find that -like, you know, why wasn't he out here with me in the beginning doing all of this? Like, why after, you know, two weeks of it, you're finally, you know, saying hey this is what I'm about to do, I want to get T-shirts made and I want to go door to door.
Q: Did you ask him why it took so long?
TR: I did. He just said, you know, he was just really emotional, distressed. He just didn't know how to handle it up until now, but..
Q: Justin has now issued an explanation on Ayla's broken arm. He says he slipped on some steps and he fell on top of her. Are you satisfied with that explanation?
TR: Yeah, like, that was um, he told me that himself when Ayla first broke her arm, so I was aware of that. But I was not aware that he wanted to take her to the doctors as soon as he wanted to. But I was reading that his mother informed him not to bring Ayla to the doctors right away, that she was fine. So I just, I kind of was, you know, I kind of was misleaded by the fact that I personally felt that Justin didn't want to bring her but now that it's come out that he did and it was his mother that said "no, don't bring her", I kind of find that to be a little wrong.
Q: You mention his mother. There seem to be some discrepencies in PD's story. That's Ayla's grandmother. At first she said there was no party the night Ayla disappeared at Justin's home and that she wasn't the last to go to bed that night. Now she is saying she was not at the home. Does it make you concerned that you are not getting the whole truth?
TR: Um, I know I'm not getting the whole truth. Uh, his mother has put it out a few times that she wasn't in that house. All of a sudden she says she was, and now she's going back to that she wasn't. So what is the truth? Was she there or was she not there?
Q: Your stepfather has created a website, aylareynolds.com, asking anyone for information connected to her disappearance. What do you hope to find and what type of response have you found so far?
TR: We're just hoping that by her website being out there, that somebody will recognize her face you know? And maybe just leave a fact that like, they've seen her or maybe that they know what is going on. Just, we're hoping that maybe somebody out there, once they see this page, they will really know that like, Ayla is missed. She needs to come home. That's what we are hoping for by having her webpage out there and have it be viewed by millions of people. That, you know what, she is still missing and this is supposed to help maybe get her home.
Jan.12th video@link transcript:
TR: My pregnancy with Ayla, for the longest time, none of us thought that I was actually going to carry to full term and have Ayla cause my- in the first two, three months of my pregnancy was rough. Very rough pregnancy.
TR: At first I was scared, I was like, "oh my god", but, I'm actually, I'm actually like pregnant, I'm going to have a baby, I was just- I don't know, I was just happy, and sad, and I mean I think I had every emotion that a mother just finding out is going to have. I just- my biggest thing was, I just kept telling myself, I was definitely scared. Very scared. And then, as the months went on, I started getting, you know, it got in my head that like, I am going to be a mom.
I found out I was having a girl, I started crying. Just bringing her home I knew she was mine and I didn't have to share her with anybody if I didn't want to. And I, just, Ayla is my best friend. Like, I have told Ayla all of my darkest, deepest secrets because she can't tell nobody and it's like, when I had a bad day, I could turn to Ayla and I could put her in my arms and I could just tell her my whole day, and what bothered me, and it's like, cause she didn't know. She would, she just still loves me no matter what, you know?
TR: Like I've been telling everybody, I gave every breath that I had to push her out and I will give every breath that it takes to make sure she comes home.
quoted from article more@link:
Trista’s story of motherhood — and Ayla’s story of daughterhood — are not unique, or at least they weren’t until Dec. 17 when Ayla was reported missing by her father, Justin DiPietro. Twenty-seven days into the wrenching and captivating search for the girl, Trista said she tries to focus on Ayla the person, not Ayla the missing person.
“I used to tell her she was going to be mommy’s star, but this isn’t how I wanted her to become a star,” said Trista. “She’s got to come home. I can’t imagine the rest of my life without her.”
“For the past week or two I’ve found myself lashing out at everyone,” she said Wednesday during a lengthy interview with the Bangor Daily News. “Whenever I see her on the front page or on television, I think there’s no way that’s my little girl. Sometimes I have to pretend it’s not going on. If I don’t tell myself that sometimes, I don’t know how I could function.”
Jan 16th quoted from article:
The mother of Ayla Reynolds said reports last week that Ayla’s father, Justin DiPietro, took a polygraph test administered by investigators has heightened her doubt about whether DiPietro is telling the truth. Trista Reynolds also said she and others in her family are arranging with investigators to take their own polygraph tests.
Jan.18th TR WGME interview:
TR: That winning smile, and those beautiful blue eyes. I just can't wait to see them again.
I've been looking out the window and saying to myself, like, oh it's beautiful. It would be a great day to be playing in the snow and watching her just run around.
Some days are harder than others. And there are just days that I don't wanna talk to anybody or do anything except for just sit and cry.
Bring her home. You know? Like, bring her home to me, to her father, to our whole families, like, we miss her. Just bring her home. That is all we want.
It's getting more and more frustrating because I really did not think we would hit 30 days. I really thought that, you know, maybe whoever did take her, would say you know what? This nightmare has gone on long enough, and would have brought her home.
Now we are arranging um, a polygraph, um, and when I go to take it, on the day I do take it, I will be more than pleased to put it out there to everyone.
I want her to know like, if she does see me, that I love her. And I'm right here still and I haven't gone anywhere.
"I have prepared this statement because I said that I would release the results of my lie detector test to the public, I took that test today.
According to the test administrator, who was very courteous and professional, I was unable to complete the test due to a medical condition. It was suggested to me that after treatment by a doctor I would be able to finish the test, but the investigating authority is content with the general outcome of the incomplete test (as it stands).
This is far from the result I wanted to share with the public, but I will take the advice of the administrator and seek attention for my medical condition so I can be healthy enough to be re-tested if required. In the meantime I wish that people will keep Ayla in their hearts and wish with all of us for her safe return."
Jan.20th Today Show:
Reporter: Both parents say they have taken polygraph tests. Ayla's mother, TR, says she took hers on Wednesday, answering hours of questions about Ayla's disappearance.
TR: Just, you know, if I had taken Ayla or if I know who could have gone and taken Ayla, and obviously no. I have no idea who took her or where she is or anything, like. And I never took her. Like, I have no reason to hide any of that. Like, I would never do that.
Reporter: She says she had to stop in the middle of the test because of a medical condition. She would not disclose that condition.
TR: I think she is alive, and I think she is holding on and being a strong little girl right now. I love her so much and I want her home.
Jan.22nd, TR/Family detailed timeline posted. Go to www.aylareynolds.com, click "Contacts" then "Download Ayla's timeline"
An account of events that transpired prior to the disappearance of Ayla Bell Reynolds on 12/16/2011 as remembered by Trista Reynolds, her Mother Becca Hanson, her Sister Jessica Reynolds and her Brother Ronnie Reynolds.
August 27th 2011 - Justin took Ayla for the day to see the Navy's Blue Angels in Brunswick and nothing was amiss with the visit aside from Ayla had a slight sunburn.
About Mid-September - Justin took Ayla to Chucky Cheese and she was returned with black and blue bruises the right side of her face and ear, photographs were taken. Justin said that he had put her in the "Ball Pit" and she got into a fight with two little boys.
About the end of September - Justin took Ayla on a Thursday and brought her back Friday. Later that evening, Becca noticed that she could not walk without difficulty and after a few days she was not getting any better, favoring her left foot as she walked. Trista asked Justin what had happen and he said they were," horsing around". The subsequent visit to the doctor found it to be a pulled leg muscle... and it took three weeks before she could walk normally again.
October 12, 2011 - Trista becoming increasing more dependent on alcohol relating to her personal life and the stresses of being a single mom with two babies had an altercation with her sister Jessica, resulting in the police being called. No charges were filed and The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) was notified.
October 13, 2011 - DHHS gave Trista two choices: kick the alcohol, or lose the kids. Realizing the adverse affect alcohol was having on herself and her children she admitted herself into a substance abuse treatment facility in Lewiston that afternoon. Justin was never given sole custody of Ayla . No complaints were filed with any courts or agencies. Trista never went to court and never saw a judge. DHHS had put Ayla in the joint care of Becca and Jessica while she was undergoing treatment.
October 17th, 2011, 3pm - DHHS case worker and supervisor for child protection services (CPS), called Jessica demanding that she turn Ayla over Justin. When Jessica asked," Why now?" she was told that, "he's the father and he has the right to take her" and went on to say that "dad trumps the aunt - any day". Jessica refused to give Ayla to Justin.
October 17th 2011, 7pm - Lewiston Police and Justin (who waited downstairs) arrived at Jessica's apartment and demanded on behalf of DHHS that they turn Ayla over to them. After Ayla was turned over to Justin by the police, it was revealed to Jessica (via phone) that the CPS supervisor had given the police authorization (and Jessica's address) to retrieve Ayla. Ayla was kicking and screaming when turned over to Justin. While that may qualify as ‘without incident’ on a police log it was traumatic for everyone else involved.
October 20th 2011, 2pm - A "family team meeting" was held. Among those present were; Trista, Jessica, Justin (via phone), Jessica's attorney, two doctors, two DHHS case workers, and the CPS supervisor. At the end of the meeting, all parties agreed (including Justin) that Ayla would be returned to Trista after completion of her seven day evaluation. Justin was also ordered by DHHS to bring Ayla to the treatment facility the following day for a visit with Trista, and to release her into the care of Trista (at Jessica's Apartment) on October 22nd or according to the CPS supervisor "there would be consequences". Justin never showed up with Ayla at the treatment facility. Justin also did not release Ayla into Trista’s care on 10/22/11. Trista called DHHS numerous times, only to be stone-walled by the chain of command. Trista, at wits end, eventually agrees to leave Ayla with Justin provided she receives regular visits with Ayla.
November 5th 2011 - Justin calls Trista and says that they (he and his mom) were getting ready to take Ayla to the emergency room. When asked why, Justin told Trista that he was coming home from shopping the day before and had "fallen up the stairs" on Ayla while carrying her and a bag of groceries. Later it was reported that Ayla's left forearm was broken and had been put into a splint and ace bandage.
November 21, 2011 2 pm- Trista went with Ayla and Justin to a doctor’s appointment with her bone specialist, that was the last time Trista, Ronnie, and Becca saw Ayla.
December 15th 2011, 12 pm - Due to her growing concerns of infrequent visitations, lack of communication from Justin, missing doctor visits and Ayla's injuries while under Justin's care (documented with doctors and DHHS) Trista petitioned the Cumberland County Courthouse for parental rights and responsibilities.
December 17, 2011 8:51 am - Ayla Bell Reynolds is reported missing from 29 Violette Avenue Waterville, Maine.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
From the start Justin did not want Trista to have Ayla. It has been stated that he never had the chance to be there when she was born, for good reason; Justin didn’t want Trista to bring Ayla to term if "it was going to be his". Trista told Justin that it was not his at that time because she did not want him to pressure her into an abortion. Justin was ordered by DHHS to pay back child support in December 2010 after having a paternity test, so it could be said that he did not “know” he was the father until then but it is false to say he wasn’t aware of Ayla’s existence until then. While living in the same city Justin had a total of five visits with Ayla since December 2010, Phoebe Ayla’s paternal grandmother only visited once. On two of those visits, Ayla came home with visible bruises and Justin would only come and visit with Ayla if no one else was in Trista's Apartment.
We would like to have clarification on whether or not Phoebe has friends or relatives in DHHS, it has been widely rumored online, but we have not heard from Phoebe on this subject.
Justin was well aware that Ayla was with Jessica while Trista was in treatment and even told Jessica over the phone that “Ayla’s fine there”. Why then was it four days later that DHHS contacted Jessica about turning over Ayla to Justin?
Becca and Jessica were always in Ayla's life and seemed to be much more mature loving care givers than Justin was. Why place Ayla with practical strangers? Is "dad trumps the aunt" standard DHHS policy? Why did DHHS give Trista a “kick the booze or lose your kids” ultimatum only to then take one of her two children when she was undergoing treatment?
Did DHHS do background checks on the DiPietros’ before placing Ayla with them? Was the DHHS's required house inspection done (check for proper fire detectors, safety, heating system, running water) by a state official? Was Ayla’s custody fast tracked to Justin by someone in DHHS? What is their policy on handing down ultimatums and then reneging on the terms?
Justin may not be guilty of anything more than being an unsatisfactory role model but it seems that he has been influenced by someone to participate in Ayla’s life.
I would like to respond to rumors regarding interviews with the press saying that I have been advised to do as many interviews as possible to keep Ayla in the public eye and maintain awareness that she is missing. I have never received any compensation for myself for the interviews I have given. The only motivation I require is helping my baby Ayla come home.
Jan 27th press release from aylareynolds.com:
Becca Hanson, Ayla's maternal grandmother, took a polygraph today but was unable to complete the test. Becca and the test administrator decided to attempt the test with the knowledge that she may not be able to complete the test due to her perscription medication. It was determined however that the medication indeed interfered with the test. Becca offered to suspend her medication in order to retake the test, but was told that it was unnecassary. Ronnie Reynolds, Ayla's uncle, took and passed a polygraph yesterday.
Jan 27th more@link:
Hanson said the decision to have the family members take the exam was a mutual one between themselves and police.
"They asked and we offered," she said.
Jan 28th video@link:
TR: Well, I appreciate everyone for coming here today. I'm here just like everybody else to support my daughter. I'm here for her, to pray that she is going to come home. Me and state police have- want questions and answers, you know what I mean? Like, um, the answer to those questions right now. And I'm not the person for that, like, that's for Justin to be answering and not me. So, personally, like, I'm not trying to be mean, but I would love for you guys to respect the fact that I'm not here for this right now. I am here for my daughter and to support her and pray for her.
Q: So you don't have a reaction at all when you read that article, when you-
TR: Do you really want to know what my reaction is?
Q: Yes I do.
TR: Really? You really want to know? I'm ready to go knock on peoples doors myself because I want to know what happened to my daughter. And I want to know where she is and who took her. Or, just, whatever. Like everybody else does. My reaction is I'm still trying to concept the fact that blood was found, of my daughter. That's my reaction. Okay?
TR: I gotta keep going and stay strong because I'm not just a mommy to Ayla, I'm also a mom to another baby who needs me just as well as she does.
Jan 28th TR press release from aylareynolds.com:
I realize the public is curious about the new developments annouced today and I will issue a further statement soon, but for now I am just trying to process this information that I just learned. My heart and soul want my daughter Ayla to be found safely and I remain hopeful. I thank everyone on behalf of Ayla for their thoughts and prayers.
Jan 29th press release from aylareynolds.com:
We are posting this statement regarding the accounts in the media Saturday. State police investigators informed us that evidence had leaked to the press regarding blood found at the scene of Ayla's disappearance and that they were prepared to confirm the story. What they were unwilling to confirm to the press, but left to our discretion, is that it has already been determined to be Ayla's blood. They also stated to us that it was "more than a small cut would produce". Even in light of this evidence, we are more determined than ever to find out what has happened to Ayla and we still cling to the hope that she is alive and will be returned to us. We urge anyone that has information about Ayla to come forward now and unburden yourself of the truth.
01-30-2012, 08:38 PM #4
TR and Family Statements w/transcripts continued:
Jan 29, 2012 video@link:
RR: Everyday it's hard. Everyday it's hard not knowing where she's at.
Reporter: Ron Reynolds is sick of waiting for the truth of what happened to his granddaughter. He says he has always believed that Justin Dipietro and his family knew more about her disappearance than they are letting on.
RR: This family again has gone through hell. And I'm tired of it. I want Ayla home. I want one-somebody in that family, have the guts to come up and tell the state police who has her or where she is so we can bring her home. Once and for all.
RR: Justin. If you, your brother, your mother- somebody in that family knows something. Be man enough to come forth and say something to the state police. Be man enough to bring her home. I'm asking you as her Papa, and you being her father, isn't enough enough? Hasn't this family suffered enough? Haven't we all suffered enough including Ayla? What happened that night-whatever happened that night, you know, come forth. Say something. Don't do this to this family anymore.
Jan 29th quoted from article:
Trista Reynolds' father said the family was told late Saturday by McCausland that blood found in the home was determined to be Ayla's.
"It was a surprise," Ronald Reynolds said.
He said police did not give any indication what the discovery means.
Ronald Reynolds said he is convinced the family in DiPietro's house has more information than they have shared.
"Every day, it gets hotter and hotter," he said. "I hope they pull them back in, set them down and give them the opportunity to say something."
Jan 30th TR Today show:
TR: My whole insides just kind of felt like they crumbled. I cried. I-I cried a lot.
TR: I was just told, over maybe 24 hours ago right now that blood was found and I don't want it to be real.
TR: I was wanting to maybe lash out a little bit about it but that wasn't going to get me anywheres, it was amazing to have him by my side yesterday. Um, to support Ayla as her parents, as mom and dad.
TR: A mother's worst nightmare is what has happened to me. I really miss her.
01-30-2012, 08:39 PM #5
JD and Family Statements:
Dec .20th 2011
First, I'd like to thank everyone involved for their continued support in finding our daughter, Ayla.
I have no idea what happened to Ayla, or who is responsible. I will not make accusations or insinuations towards anyone until the police have been able to prove who's responsible for this.
Ayla was in my sole custody at the time of her disappearance per agreement between her mother and I because she was temporarily unable to care for Ayla. I have shared every piece of information possible with the police. Contrary to some statements floating around out there, I have been in communication with Ayla's mother over the last couple of weeks. The Waterville police have the transcripts from my phone for verification of those communications.
It has always been my intention to have a shared parenting arrangement with Ayla's mother and I will continue to work towards that when Ayla is returned to us.
My family and friends will continue to do everything we can to assist in this investigation and to get Ayla back home.
We appreciate the media respecting our privacy at this time. If anyone has any information that might be helpful, please contact Waterville police at 207-680-4700.
First of all, I'd like to thank everyone who's been involved in their continued efforts in finding my daughter, Ayla. A special thanks to the residents of Waterville that came together to offer a reward for information leading to Ayla's return. I am pleased with the amount of resources being expended from all the departments of law enforcement. Until now I have not participated in any interviews for I don't want to in any way hinder the investigation.
However, it is important that the people hear it from me personally that I have no idea what happened to Ayla and that I am not hiding. I have been in full cooperation with everyone in this effort, including not adding additional media hype.
I would never do anything to hurt my child. The questions of Ayla's arm or bruises or anything else being said are simply ludicrous. I would never want anyone to spend even a minute in my shoes. No should ever have to experience this. It has affected me in more ways than you can imagine.
I have to believe that Ayla is with somebody and I just want that person to find the courage to do the right thing and find a way to return her safely. Even if that means dropping her off at a church, or hospital, or some place safe..
Again, thank you to everyone in trying to help and thank you to everyone showing your support! Please don't give up or lose hope, because that is easy to do. Please be grateful for what you have. I know what I don't have.
The truth is the truth and when the case is solved, it will be out there. Until then, please try to remain positive and hopeful as I remain confident the Ayla will return safely.
Jan.2nd2012 today show interview with JD:
Q: Can you give us a sense why you are coming forward now?
JD: Uh, there is a few reasons why. Um, initially, the first few days, I was emotionally incapable of coming out to do an interview and I had been advised that, by coming on and doing an interview, by law enforcement, that it could possibly hinder the investigation. And, I'm here to help in any way I can, and by coming on here, it was in hopes of reaching out to the person that, that does have my daughter. To let them know that what you're doing isn't right, you may think what you're doing is right for Ayla. But it's not, you have no right. You're not her parent. She belongs home with her family.
Q: Police say they believe foul play is involved. What are investigators telling you about what happened, about what they believe may have happened here?
JD: As far as I know, from..uh, that's just been a change in, in terminology. Um, as far as I know, we're, we're at the same place that we were on day one with this.
Q: Can you tell us about the last time you saw your little daughter? Tell us about that night.
JD: It was just a normal night. There was nothing-I put her to bed and, just a normal night.
Q: What do you think people should know about you and about your relationship to your little girl?
JD: I can tell you what I'm not. I love my daughter, I..I would never do anything to harm my daughter. She's...she's the world to me.
Q: Trista has specifically questioned your parenting skills. It's even been raised, a question of an arm injury that your daughter has. She says that she worried Ayla wasn't safe in your care. Your reaction to that?
JD: As far as I know, there was never any concerns. Um, we has both agreed that me having her at this point in time was the best thing for her.
Q: Can you tell us specifically about your daughter? Tell us what makes your daughter so special.
JD: She's my daughter, she's my child. She's my world. That's...she's everything to me.
Q: What do you think happens now and what are you doing to try and find her at this point?
JD: I just want my daughter home, um, I'm doing anything possible that I can to get my daughter home. Um, feels like a helpless situation at some points, but, I'm doing, doing what I can. It's part of the reason I'm coming on here today, in hopes of reaching out to the person that does have her.
Jan.3rd2012 WGME statements from JD quoted from article. more@link:
"It's not right. Whoever has my daughter that person had no right to take her. She should be with her parents. This is where Ayla belongs."
"Ayla probably thinks this is some sort kind of a game. She adapts real well. I have to believe she is being cared for. And I'm sure she has adapted to this situation."
Jan.3rd2012 morning sentinel interview with JD and PD quoted from article:
“I hope that whoever had the courage to come into this house and take her has the courage to bring her back. It’s gone on long enough,” DiPietro said during a Monday interview with the Morning Sentinel.
“There was no party,” he said.
Phoebe DiPietro nodded in agreement. She also offered a simple plea to anyone who might know about Ayla’s whereabouts.
“I just want her back,” she said, tearfully.
DiPietro said he wanted to thank the community for posting a $30,000 reward for information that leads investigators to Ayla.
“It’s amazing,” he said. “I don’t know John Nale or any of the people involved in raising money for the reward. To think that they would do something like that for people they don’t know is just overwhelming.”
Jan.6th Morning Sentinel more@link:
"I will publicly invite Nancy Grace to come spend a day with me," DiPietro said Thursday afternoon during an exclusive interview with the Morning Sentinel. "Nancy Grace, please come see me. Do you want to spend a day with me? Do you want to see what I'm going through? Do you want to see the ins and outs of it? I invite you to."
Jan 6th Morning Sentinel more@link:
"I came up the stairs and slipped. It happened so fast, I don't know exactly how I fell on her, but I fell on her," he said. "It's burned into my brain."
His mother, Phoebe DiPietro, 47, was in the next room.
"I was sitting in the living room with my daughter, and we heard a big thump," she recalled Thursday. "I immediately went to the kitchen and Ayla was scared, obviously. I picked her up."
Jan 6th Morning Sentinel more@link:
"I walked out of my house to go down to the station to give statements, and all of a sudden we were homeless on top of everything else," recalled Phoebe DiPietro, the 21-month-old child's grandmother. "We walked out with the clothes on our back and weren't allowed in for 14 days."
Jan 6th JD NECN interview:
JD: I don't want, for one second, for my daughter to ever think that I wasn't doing everything that I could to get her home.
JD: People don't have to care about me, you know, as long as they care about Ayla that's, that's what I want.
JD: I want her poster, her face, on every corner in America.
JD: Like, you know, if there was something solid that I knew I would be sharing that. But, again, you know, um, I cannot go out there and speculate, and, and uh, which is what a lot of people have done.
JD: She's amazing, she's, she's very funny, very outgoing, I mean, she dances around rooms, I mean, she's just, she's, she's she loves dancing.
JD: It's not about me. It's not about Trista. It's not a he said, she said thing. It's not about the public, you know, it's not about the media. This is about Ayla, you know? And just, we want her home and I'm going to do anything I can to make that happen.
Jan 7th more@link:
"I'm sure that eventually they will be able to let us know how someone go into the house whether it was an unlocked window, an unlocked door, I don't know," DiPietro said. 'If I knew, it wouldn't have happened," she added.
Jan.8th 2012 NECN interview with PD:
PD: You're waiting for a phonecall. Hoping that the police have your granddaughter.
She's quiet, very sweet. Her eyes, she's got the bluest eyes and the longest eyelashes.
Q: There's no accident that could have happened that night?
Q: Among anyone here?
Q: You? Justin? The other people that were here?
PD: No, no.
Q: Something covered up?
PD: No, no.
PD: I can tell you that there was not a party, here at the house.
Q: People had dinner, watched television, eventually went to bed?
PD: Pretty much. Uh, yeah. I really have to avoid that question.
Q: You didn't hear any noise?
PD: I did not hear anything.
Q: When you found out that she wasn't there, what did you think?
PD: I thought that I didn't want my son to go get any of his friends and go kicking in doors looking for her.
Q: I take it you don't think some stranger walked in from off the street and did this?
PD: It is a very creepy feeling to think that somebody had been casing your house. That they had been watching the family's activities.
Q: After Ayla vanished, her grandmother told detectives some things around the house didn't look the same.
PD: Some oddities I had noticed, and we told the law enforcement what those were.
PD: I would give everything I own if we could have her back.
PD: Justin is a great dad. He truly, truly is and I know he loves Ayla.
Q: Do you have anything to say to whoever took Ayla?
PD: Please bring her back. Please, just bring her back.
Jan 9th interview with PD, posted Jan.18th:
Q: Is this family, who lives in this house, in any way connected with her disappearance?
PD: No. No. The only way that we are connected is that this is my house, and we live here. That is the only connection. No. Nobody has taken her, nobody knows where she has gone, nobody got anyone to take her. My family did not take Ayla.
Q: And for anyone who thinks that anyone here, in the house that night, had anything at all to do with it?
PD: We did not.
Q: There is no accident that could have happened that night?
Q: Among anyone here?
Q: You? Justin? The other people that were here?
PD: No, no.
Q: Something covered up?
PD: No, no.
Q: Is it possible that anyone here in the house that night had anything to do with her disappearance?
PD: No. No. I know that, I know it in my heart. I know it in my soul. That my family and anyone that was here was not involved in Ayla's disappearance.
Q: I take it you don't think some stranger walked in from off the street and did this?
PD: It is a very creepy feeling to think that somebody had been casing your house. That they had been watching the family's activities. They had to have known there were sheer curtains in the girl's room. Some sheer panels. They're not- they are no longer there, that was one of the first things I had went out and bought, which was some thicker curtain with the backing on them. But, I don't know whether somebody was planning this. Obviously they, it, they were very good at what they did.
Q:Phoebe, do you think she is alright?
PD: I have to believe that she is okay. I believe that Ayla is somewhere and whoever took her took her because they wanted to have a little girl. She's sweet, she's special, she's- she doesn't really cry, but when she gets upset, her little lip, her little jaw, quivers. You know, I said no to her once and it almost broke my heart. I have to believe she is okay. I have to. I have an image in my mind, I shared this yesterday, there is a detective on the Waterville police force that we have worked with quite closely, his name is Lincoln Rider. Um, just, in my mind I picture him handing Ayla to Justin. Of course, I'll be hugging both of them, because I don't think he'll let her go. That is the picture in my mind's eye, I have to hold on to that. They are going to find her and she is okay.
Q: Do you talk to her?
PD: Actually, I can't say that I have talked to Ayla. I ask God to watch over her and protect her which I believe he is.
Q: What kind of person does do this?
PD: I hope it's not somebody sick and twisted because if it really was then, would my granddaughter be safe? So I have to believe that it was someone that wanted a little girl. Um, especially one as sweet as Ayla. I'm really not sure but I have to believe that she is safe and she is okay.
Q: In some way when you walk into her room, even though it is hard, do you feel her presence at all? In some way?
PD: She's not playing on her little rocking horse, playing with blocks..
Q: You picture her in there?
PD: Yeah. I just have a hard time going in there.
Q: Why is it hard?
PD: Because the last place Ayla was...it's a constant reminder. You wonder why? How? What kind of person does this?
Jan. 9th video@link:
Q:Who do you think would do such a thing?
PD: Again, I'm not going to- I, I've given my theories and my opinions to the Waterville police department and the detectives. I just keep hoping that law enforcement is going to bring Ayla home and that they are going to find her.
quoted from article:
Ayla's grandmother, Phoebe DiPietro, who first spoke exclusively with CNN on Friday, said she now wants to clarify a detail about her interview.
DiPietro now tells CNN she was not among the adults at the home from which Ayla disappeared that night but instead was at another location that she wouldn't publicly disclose.
Jan.11th quoted from article:
Justin DiPietro, Ayla's father, said he learned about the river search on Tuesday.
"I spoke with investigators last night. They said, 'Don't be alarmed,'" DiPietro told the Morning Sentinel in a brief conversation.
Jan.13th quoted from article more@link:
“I asked for a polygraph on day one,” DiPietro said today during an interview with the Morning Sentinel. “I’ve taken one, and the results, I was never allowed to see them. It’s something you’re going to have to ask law enforcement about.”
JD: Ah, again, I'm not here to answer any questions, you know, I'm just here to show my support for the community..
TR: ..For Ayla..
JD..is supporting Ayla, so.
Jan 28th quoted from article more@Link:
Justin DiPietro wouldn't comment on what he thought the discovery meant.
"I'm not going to answer any questions about it, but I will say this: If there was something there, I don't think I'd be standing here with you right now," he said.
Ayla's grandmother, Phoebe DiPietro, also wouldn't discuss the discovery.
"Personally, I do not believe anything happened to Ayla other than she was taken," she said. She owns the Violette Avenue house, but was not there the night Ayla disappeared.
Jan 30th quoted from article:
Justin DiPietro's mother contacted News 13 Monday morning, referring all questions to the family's attorney. Our calls to the attorney went unreturned.
01-30-2012, 08:40 PM #6
Nancy Grave and JVM Transcripts and Video (thank you to WS user Patty G for the videos):
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 12/19/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 12/19/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 12/20/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 12/20/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 12/21/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 12/21/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 12/28/11 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 1/9/12 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 1/25/12 - YouTube
TRISTA REYNOLDS: A few weeks ago, Justin had given me a call and said that he was holding Ayla and they fell up, like, two or three little steps, and he fell on top of her and her arm was broken. And he waited over -- almost 24 hours to bring her to the emergency room.
I want -- I want reasons -- I want to know reasons to why -- why do you wait almost 24 hours to bring a child to -- he himself told me she screamed bloody murder when they fell, so you wait almost 24 hours to go have her checked out?
REYNOLDS: No, when she started staying with Justin, she was actually sleeping in, like, a toddler bed.
REYNOLDS: Ayla knows how to open doors, but I also have taught Ayla that we don`t walk outside without Mommy or an older adult. And Ayla never once had ever tried getting outside, unless I was right there by her.
GRACE: I`m going to come back to Dr. Carter. But very quickly, Trista Reynolds is with us. This is Ayla`s mom. Trista, you went to court in secret just hours before Ayla goes missing, 20-month-old baby girl with a sling on her arm. Did you prevail? Did the judge suggest to you that you were going to get full custody?
REYNOLDS: I haven`t even gotten that far. All I have done is file the paperwork, and that was it. I haven`t seen a judge. I haven`t talked to a lawyer. I have done nothing but file...
GRACE: So you went all on your own without even a lawyer to help you, trying to get custody. Why, Trista, were you trying to get full custody?
REYNOLDS: Because her father has never had anything to do with her up until I needed to go and get a little bit of help for myself. And then when I left my daughter with my sister, that`s when he decided, You know what? I`m going to take Ayla.
And I want to put it out there that every time my daughter has gone with Justin, she would always come back with bruises on her or she had come back with a pulled muscle. And in the 18 months that I had had my daughter, not once did she ever end up missing, did she ever end up with a broken bone, did she ever miss a doctor`s appointment. And since she`s been with Justin, she has missed four appointments for shots. And this past Friday, she missed her bone specialist appointment.
GRACE: You know, yes -- you know, Trista, another question. I want to follow-up on what Renee Rockwell just said. Who all was in the home, Trista? And have you talked to the father?
REYNOLDS: No, Justin and I have had no contact.
RONALD REYNOLDS, MISSING CHILD`S GRANDFATHER (via telephone): I said -- I`m sorry, ma`am. I don`t know. Honestly, I don`t know. All I know is what was told what happened with her arm, and that she went to the doctors, got it checked out, and apparently, it was broken from the fall.
TIRSTA REYNOLDS, AYLA REYNOLDS` MOTHER (via telephone): No. I did not tell Justin that I was going to the court to file. Now, me and him had had the discussion within that week that he told me himself that he was going to file the custody papers against me. So I decided to go and file against him.
GRACE: All right. So he did not know, then? In your mind, he did not know that you had filed the papers?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: No, I wanted him not to know that I was filing --
GRACE: Why? Why didn`t you want him to know?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Why didn`t I want him to know?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Because he`s vindictive. He`s very verbally abusive towards me and anything that I say or do, he refuses to let me see my daughter, he`s refused to let me talk to her. I mean, he has never, like, once since he`s had her, since October 17th, had let me have her for one single day. So, I decided that it was time to do this the legal way and let a judge say who this child should be with. And my daughter does deserve to be with me. I`m the one who`s raised her for 18 months.
Trista, can you tell me, one of the callers asked why the dad had the baby to start with. I told them, as you heard, that you were briefly in rehab. You put yourself in rehab to get past some problems you had, but the night the baby goes missing, which is what I`m concerned, I don`t care what anybody did before that, where were you the night the baby goes missing, Trista?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: The night that my daughter went missing, I was at the Maine motel in South Portland.
GRACE: And you have fully cooperated with police, is that true?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Fully cooperated. And Nancy, there`s one thing I want to clear up with you.
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Someone just said that -- it was said that Ayla had her own bedroom at her father`s house. She does not have her own bedroom. She sleeps in the same room with her cousin, who is, I think, two months younger than her. So, if -- so why wasn`t she taken? If my daughter went missing, why didn`t her cousin -- you know, at least make a noise or scream or be taken as well.
GRACE: So you`re telling me that, Trista, that there would have been somebody else sleeping in the room with her?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Yes! Like, I`ve been to that house myself, and I have been in the bedroom to where Ayla sleeps, and she sleeps in the same exact room as Justin`s sister`s little girl.
GRACE: And how old is the little girl?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: I think she`s exactly -- I think she`s like two months younger than Ayla.
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: OK, well, let me clear one thing up.
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Justin and I have never been in a serious relationship, ever.
GRACE: OK. So that means that there was never any domestic abuse, because you never lived together?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: No. We`ve never lived together, we`ve never been together. We were just two mutual friends.
GRACE: I want to go right now -- OK, hold on, I`m getting another question -- OK, another caller has another question, Trista, about a bone specialist. Did the baby see a bone specialist when she broke her arm?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: Yes, we took her to Maine orthopedics, right in Portland.
GRACE: And what did they say?
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: They said that at first it seemed to be suspicious, and then they said the way that her arm was broken, it may not have been suspicious and it could have been accidental.
TIRSTA REYNOLDS: My daughter -- I don`t see Ayla doing it either. And Ayla would never wander off unless there was someone with her.
JESSICA REYNOLDS, AYLA`S AUNT: Hello?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, hi, Jessica. Can you hear me, Jessica?
J. REYNOLDS: I can hear you.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. What was the child`s relationship with the dad? We`ve heard a lot about injuries. We know that the child had a broken arm. How did she get that, and did the child receive any other injuries when she was with the father?
J. REYNOLDS: I can tell you that the injury did come from being with dad. The story we have gotten was they had gone shopping at a local store. And he was carrying Ayla and a bunch of bags. And they fell up two steps that can`t be any more than six inches apart, and he fell on top of Ayla.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you buy that story?
J. REYNOLDS: Not at all. Not at all. I mean, a lot comes in -- like, why was he carrying her? She`s well able to walk.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did you know of any other injuries that the child sustained under the father`s care?
J. REYNOLDS: I do, actually.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tell me.
J. REYNOLDS: The very first time he took Ayla for like a visit, he brought her to Chuck E. Cheese, and she came home with bruises on the right side of her face. There was some bruises on her leg.
And the story he gave us was that she was playing in the ball pit at Chuck E. Cheese and fighting with another child. Now, any parent would remove their child from that situation. Instead, I guess he let her keep fighting, and that`s why she came home with the bruises. Didn`t make sense.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jessica, why did he want the child? Why did he want to take the child, if, when he had the child, she kept falling and getting hurt and having, quote unquote, "injuries"?
J. REYNOLDS: I`m sorry. I didn`t hear the beginning of that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Why did he want the child if the child was having so many problems and getting hurt so much on his watch?
J. REYNOLDS: Right. I -- I honestly -- I don`t know. I can tell you my sister was -- she absolutely, every time he called to take Ayla, she has hesitant about sending her. She did want her -- she wanted her child to have a relationship with her father. She was scared, though, because every time Ayla came home, there was something wrong with her.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, excellent question. Jessica Reynolds, you are the child`s maternal aunt. You were watching the little girl at the time that the mother went into rehab, and then the dad comes and takes the child away. Had you told Children Services, "Hey, she keeps getting hurt, reportedly, allegedly, when with the father"?
J. REYNOLDS: Well, I can say we have reported it many times, to department of health and human services, to answer that question that was just asked. I didn`t let the child go with him. I was told I had to give the child to him. It was not an option.
BECCA HANSON, MISSING CHILD`S MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER (via telephone): Thank you for having me on.
GRACE: Ms. Hanson, I don`t understand how this whole scenario unfolded. The father is visiting with the baby. She`s at his home. He has just recently moved back in with his parents. I think his girlfriend is there at the time.
What I don`t understand is this, Ms. Hanson. She`s with the daddy, she goes missing. She`s with the daddy last time, she gets a broken arm. And now I`m hearing that Daddy had her at a Chuck E. Cheese, where some things are just -- it`s up for grabs. It`s chaos in there. You`ve got a 2-year-old -- not even 2, 20-month-old baby girl standing there at Chuck E. Cheese, and he says older children run by and maul her, maul her, and she`s covered in bruises? What happens when Daddy gets the baby?
HANSON: I don`t know. He just wasn`t watching her.
To Becca Hanson. This is Ayla`s maternal grandmother. Has the mom done any searching for Ayla?
HANSON: No. We were informed by the Waterville Police Department not to go to Waterville. We were just here in Portland.
HANSON: They said they didn`t need us there searching.
GRACE: OK. I`m just trying to just drink that in. What exactly are you and your daughter doing to find the baby?
HANSON: We are doing everything that we possibly can, hitting all the newspapers, the news stations. We`re trying to do a candlelight on Friday evening for Ayla.
Nancy, I just want my granddaughter brought home safe, where we can hug her and kiss her and let her know that we`re all here waiting for her.
All right, Becca Hanson is here with us. This is Trista`s mom. I don`t understand it, either. I don`t. Explain to me why the mom is sitting 80 miles away from where the baby disappeared? Because I got to tell you, ma`am, I would be laying in the streets screaming, Where`s my baby, trying to find the baby. What is she doing 80 miles away?
HANSON: She was told by the Waterville Police Department not to be in Waterville.
GRACE: I don`t understand.
HANSON: She`s with me and her dad and her brother and her sister, and we`re waiting patiently for something to come up with this child.
Miss Hanson, thanks for being with us. I understand that the father had just moved back into his mother`s home, is that correct?
BECCA HANSON, MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER OF MISSING 20-MONTH-OLD BABY AYLA: That is correct.
GRACE: So, up until that time who had been taking care of baby Ayla, the father or the grandmother?
HANSON: Me and my daughter Trista had been taking care of Ayla since the day she was born.
GRACE: Yes, I know that. During this particular visit who had been taking care of the child?
HANSON: She had been with her father since October.
GRACE: OK. And during all of that time was he or his mother taking care of the baby?
HANSON: From my understanding, it was supposed to be him taking care of Ayla.
GRACE: Do you believe that to be true, Miss Hanson, or do you believe the grandmother was taking care of the baby?
HANSON: I believe the grandmother was taking care of her.
GRACE: OK. Now, remember, I`m just a lawyer. I`m not a dentist. I don`t know how to pull teeth. Why do you believe the grandmother was taking care of the baby before daddy moved home?
HANSON: Because daddy really never had anything to do with the baby much before the June of this year.
RONALD REYNOLDS, JR., AYLA REYNOLDS UNCLE, (via telephone): I can.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. I know you have an explanation as to why Trista, the mother of little missing Ayla, was not at the vigil tonight. Tell us.
RONALD REYNOLDS: Let me clear that up real quick, OK? We did not go because of the way the weather was. My father was afraid that if we got into a car accident because of the way the weather was, you know, we wouldn`t be here for Ayla. So that --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, just take a deep breath. I know it`s frustrating and you`re going through a lot of emotions right now, Ronnie. So just hang in there. I have some more questions for you. The missing girl`s dad also explains why Ayla was in his custody instead of Trista`s. Listen to what the dad said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ayla was in my sole custody at the time of her disappearance per agreement between her mother and I because she was temporarily unable to care for Ayla. I have shared every piece of information possible with the police.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right, now, Jessica, Ayla`s mom, went into rehab for alcohol abuse back in October. She left the child with her sister, and my understanding, Ronnie, is that the father came in while the mom was in rehab and took the child with the help of child services. So he says they had an agreement. To me it sounds like they had a disagreement. What do you know, Ronnie?
RONALD REYNOLDS: OK, first off, they did have an agreement, OK. When Trista was in rehab, they did have an agreement for Justin to take care of Ayla while she was there. Now, DHS, on the other hand, said when Trista got out of rehab, she could take back Ayla. Ayla was supposed to go back to her mom. And that never happened.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: So Trista got out of rehab and she was trying to get her child back. And are you saying that dad wouldn`t give the child back?
RONALD REYNOLDS: No. Her father would not bring her back. He canceled doctor appointments. He canceled visitations with Trista. I`m sorry. This doesn`t make sense. Where is my 20-month-old niece? You know, he had the agreement with Trista and then violated it.
RONALD REYNOLDS: She used to come home every time from her father`s house and she would have bruises, or one time she couldn`t walk for three weeks. And now she has a broken arm, and now she`s missing? It doesn`t make sense. It doesn`t make sense.
RONALD REYNOLDS, GRANDFATHER OF MISSING TOT GIRL, AYLA REYNOLDS: What can I tell you, Nancy? First of all, I want to thank you for doing what you`re doing. And I appreciate everything that everybody is doing out there. This has just torn me up. We have done everything that the police and everybody is telling us to do but it`s killing me. It`s killing me.
Let me tell you something, he knows something. You cannot tell me that you don`t know what happened to your little girl, to my granddaughter, to my daughter`s little girl. You can`t tell me that. You got -- you can`t tell me that you don`t know what happened to her. OK? And the statement that you made in the paper this morning, that was a crock of (EXPLETIVE DELETED). OK? And pardon my English. But that was wrong.
OK? Because everything that was said in that paper is wrong. All right. How can you stand there and turn around and say that you don`t have a clue to where my baby girl is, OK, which is your daughter? How can you turn around and say that you -- God, I don`t have a paper in front of me. And I`m really losing it right now. You know I just don`t understand this. I mean, why aren`t you out there screaming, yelling, fighting, doing everything that you possibly could to bring that little girl home?
GRACE: And you know what else -- Ronald Reynolds, I don`t like that arm in a cast. So far -- and I don`t want to jinx it. Neither one of my twins have had broken limbs. And I don`t understand how this whole thing happened. I don`t understand how every time she`s with the daddy, something gets broken or she`s got bruises on her face. Her arm is dislocated.
I don`t understand how two babies can be in one room for 13 hours and nobody checks on them? You know, just last night I saw John David three times in the night and Lucy four times, in one night. All right? 12:30 to 6:30. All right? So how can two infants be in one room and nobody checks on them for 13 hours?
REYNOLDS: And not only that, Nancy, but the other thing that really bothers me is that his conflicting stories is that he put her down at 8:00 at night and got up in the morning to go -- repeat -- to go and check on her. Now in the paper it says that she was laying in bed with him. What is it? What is it? Is it in bed, laying next to you, or was she in the room? What is it? Let`s get the story right here, OK?
TRISTA REYNOLDS: Is she OK? Is she laying somewheres dead? Is she safe? Is she cold?
Ron, on your end, tell me what happened over the Christmas break. The cops worked through the break, right?
RONALD REYNOLDS, GRANDFATHER OF MISSING CHILD (via telephone): Yes, ma`am, they did. They continued working through it. Christmas was not good for us. It was -- Ayla was not with us and she was in our thoughts and prayers, like she always has been. And I, again, say thank to you everybody, as well as me and the family and everybody else, for everybody doing out there doing what they need to do. I`m very grateful. I`m so grateful for what they`re doing. I understand that "America`s Most Wanted" is involved in this now, so that`s a big help right there.
GRACE: Ron, let`s just cut to the facts. Police insisting this is still a missing child investigation, yet these two guys are two of the state`s top homicide prosecutors. They didn`t go in there to go through the fridge, all right, have a sit-down, have a cup of coffee. What are cops telling you?
RON REYNOLDS: All we know right now is that they are involved again. They have to dress up to make sure that they don`t ruin anything, and that`s the key thing. But right now, we`re still waiting to hear.
GRACE: What`s the daddy saying? What is he telling you guys?
RON REYNOLDS: Nothing. Nothing.
RON REYNOLDS: Nobody wants to communicate. You know, he hasn`t come out. He hasn`t said anything. My daughter tried a couple of times to get up (ph) with him, but no return or anything like that. So I don`t know.
GRACE: What about his family? What about the other people that were in the home that night?
RON REYNOLDS: Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.
GRACE: Do you know where they are? Can you go to them and ask them?
RON REYNOLDS: No, I can`t. I can`t. I don`t want to -- I don`t want to ruin the investigation that they have going on right now. No. I want justice. I want justice. And they will find it.
GRACE: OK. That makes sense. Have you tried to contact his family, the grandmother or others that were there in the home that evening?
RON REYNOLDS: No, ma`am. Again, I`m not going to ruin in this case. I mean, I`m not going to do it. I`m not going to have someone say that I called, or you know, did anything wrong. No, I`m going to let the law do their job. I am -- I`ll let them do their job.
GRACE: Hold on, Joe in Florida. Don`t move. To Ron Reynolds. I recall Ayla`s mom, Trista, stating cops said, Don`t go back to Waterville, stay where you are. I don`t recall them telling her to leave town.
RON REYNOLDS: They never told her to leave town. They didn`t want us up there to get involved in the investigation. People need to stop here (ph) questions or whatever. This is about a little girl, our little girl that is missing, that we need to find, all right?
Let`s throw that question back to Ayla`s grandfather, her maternal grandfather. Ron Reynolds with us, and he is taking your calls live. Do you have any idea where the father is? Do the police know where he is, Ron?
RON REYNOLDS: All I know is that they`re working on this case, and I would say that, yes, they probably do have an idea where he is. They`re not telling anybody. It`s probably best not to tell anybody where he is right now. Just let the police do their job. Let the FBI and everybody else do their job.
And let me clarify something right now. The fact is that, again, Waterville police and the state police have asked us not to go up there due to the investigation. So we are respecting what the law is telling us.
GRACE: OK. To Ron Reynolds, this is Ayla`s grandfather, joining us from the Portland. What about the poly? Do we know if the father has taken a polygraph?
REYNOLDS: Not my knowledge, ma`am.
GRACE: Has he been asked?
REYNOLDS: I do not know, ma`am.
GRACE: Now it`s my understanding, we were told at the end of last week that no one at this point has taken a lie detector test. What about the use of psychics, Ron? Have they been called in?
REYNOLDS: No, ma`am. Not to my knowledge. But I`ve thought about that. And not only that, but I understand that "America`s Most Wanted" is also involved in this, too.
GRACE: Would you be open to psychics getting involved in the case?
REYNOLDS: Absolutely. Absolutely. If they could find my Ayla and bring her home to us, absolutely. I welcome them aboard, too. I mean anything to help, to bring her home, absolutely. And let me clarify this right now. I must. I heard the -- that woman say about how families right now were not communicating.
Do you really think it`s a wise idea to me as her grandfather to communicate with this individual? No, I don`t think it`s a good idea. I don`t think it would be smart for me to do this because, you know, I probably would end up in jail, you know, because of the way I feel right now towards what`s going on.
And no, I don`t think it`s a good idea for us to talk to the family right now. I mean, we`ll let the FBI and everybody else do their job and we`ll go from there. But I personally, I don`t think it`s a good idea if I talk to this man.
GRACE: Ron, why do you say if you spoke to the family, to Ayla`s biological father and his family members that were there in the home that night, that you`d end up in jail?
REYNOLDS: I just would because I mean think about it. I mean here we have a little girl out here somewhere we don`t know about and you`re telling me as the father you don`t know what happened to your child? Which is my granddaughter? You got to be kidding me.
GRACE: You know another thing I don`t understand, Ron, is who was the other infant in the room with baby Ayla? Who slept in that room with her that night?
REYNOLDS: I think it was -- I think it was his daughter or someone else`s little girl, a family member, I think.
GRACE: And nobody checked on them all night long? Nobody had a wet diaper, wanted a bottle, nothing?
REYNOLDS: That`s the thing I don`t understand either because I know my granddaughter gets up in the middle of the night and she always likes to have a bottle to fall back to sleep with. So I don`t understand this. He was responsible for my granddaughter. And now he`s in hiding or not coming out talking to anybody.
I mean, look. I`m going to say this. This is about Ayla. I want the police to do their job. But I want Ayla home. I just want answers. Tell me right now where my grand daughter is and I will go and get her. I don`t care. I will risk my life for her to bring her home because that`s what -- it`s just me. It`s what I would do for anybody.
GRACE: Excellent question. What do we know? To Ron Reynolds, Ayla`s grandfather. When was the last sighting of Ayla other than by her father?
REYNOLDS: I saw my granddaughter, which was on a Sunday, when my daughter was in rehab. We hung out together. We walked up to see her mother. We laughed and played. That was the last time that I saw her.
GRACE: Got it.
REYNOLDS: Because I knew from pictures that I got sent to me through cameras is when I would see my granddaughter when she was with her father.
Straight out to CNN`s Susan Candiotti, who spoke to this grandmother - - great work snagging that interview view. So, spell it out for us. How did this grandmother, the father -- the mother of the father of the missing child, how did she change her story and why?
CANDIOTTI: Well, we spent hours with her one evening last week and clearly I was left with the impression, as was my producer and the photographer that she was there that night. When we left the very next morning I went back to the house because I was to meet with her son, Justin, who said he wanted to talk with me.
But she met me at the door, Phoebe did, and said, "I have to tell you something." And she said, "I obviously left you with the impression that I was there. I was not. What I know," she said, "I want to clarify, I heard from others."
And she said, she was trying to be so careful to follow the police instructions about not saying anything about what happened that night that she slipped up. And she wanted to tell me as soon as possible so I wasn`t left with the wrong impression and she said, "I told the police immediately as they started their investigation exactly what I`m telling you, that I wasn`t there that night. I told them where I was. They know everything about my whereabouts."
CANDIOTTI: I have to tell you something, Jane, I give her credit. I give her credit for owning up to it. She didn`t have to, but she did.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I guess to me it sounded like any way that this is a mom who wants to help her son who`s at the center of this controversy because some found it odd that little Ayla`s dad who had the child when the child vanished didn`t say anything in public about his missing daughter until two weeks after she disappeared. And here he is finally speaking on NBC`s "Today" show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JUSTIN DIPIETRO, AYLA REYNOLDS` FATHER: Initially the first few days I was emotionally incapable of coming out to do an interview and I had been advised that by coming on and doing an interview by law enforcement that it could possible hinder the investigation and I`m here to help in any way that I can.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: And Susan, briefly, ten seconds, it`s odd that the father really isn`t saying like who was in the house. I mean why wouldn`t he want to give us all the information?
CANDIOTTI: Because he says police told him not to. And that`s what the grandmother is saying, too. All her knowledge, what he knows, what they knows, they are keeping a very tight lid on this -- very tight.
Trista asked you so be little Ayla`s godmother. You were in touch with the missing child`s mother, Trista, daily. What is it, first of all, that you very much want to get out there about little Ayla`s disappearance, Amanda?
AMANDA BENNER, AYLA`S GODMOTHER (via telephone): I`m sorry, the phone is really bad reception.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What do you want to say about Ayla`s disappearance? What do you want to get out there?
BENNER: I guess just that I hope she returns safe and that she`s OK, and that she`s being fed and just all in all taken care of.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: You believe this child is still alive?
BENNER: Am I worried?
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Do you believe she`s alive?
BENNER: Well, honestly, I want to believe she is. But, all the time that`s passed and all the history of her getting hurt and what not, I do fear something may have happened to her. But I can`t really say on how I feel -- like if I think she`s alive or not. Because I don`t know. I just hope and pray that she is.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We all do. We all do. And I know you have some information to give us tonight. There are a lot of people that were in Ayla`s house the night she vanished. Little Ayla`s paternal grandmother even changed her story about whether she was at the house that night. Listen to what she said first.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: You didn`t hear any noise?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I didn`t hear anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. What did she say? Listen to it again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: You didn`t hear any noise?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I did not hear anything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: The truth is, Ayla`s paternal grandmother was lying when she said that. Because after that, she admitted she was not in the house the night her granddaughter vanished. Why the big mystery over who was in the house. We know Ayla and her father Justin were there. Some reports claim, his adult sister and her child was there as well as his girlfriend and their child. We can`t confirm any of that.
Amanda, do you know who was in the house the night Ayla disappeared? I don`t want names, but do you know who was at the house?
BENNER: From my understanding it was Justin and Ayla, Justin`s sister, her child and Justin`s girlfriend and her child. And from my understanding, Ayla and her baby cousin were in the same room together. That`s where they slept every night. I`m not sure about the girlfriend`s child. And as far as I know, that`s what I`ve heard from the news and what not, who was there.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Right. We actually have video to show you of little Ayla playing with her toddler cousin, OK. And Ayla`s dad claims he put her to bed at 8:00 p.m. and then calls police the next morning at about 9:00 to report her missing. There are the two little kids playing now.
I want to ask you, Amanda. Do you have any idea why an intruder would take one child and not the other?
BENNER: That is what I keep asking myself. I don`t understand how one child would be taken, and not, neither of the other children. As well as, it`s the middle of wintertime. Nobody in their right mind has their windows open where they could open up a screen and take a child. In order for someone to get into this house, they would have to bust through a window. They would have to go through a door. They would have to make some sort of noise to get to this child.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amanda, to your point, is there was no sign of forced entry, OK? And a neighbor heard a wild noise that woke up her dog at about 3:30 in the morning. What does Trista, the missing child`s mother, your best friend have to say about that?
BENNER: She doesn`t know how to feel, what to think. She`s been pulled every which way. She`s extremely devastated. I mean, she was the only one to care for this child for all of her life until she needed to go and seek help. Which she also - in the sense that she`s never left Ayla`s side. Ayla didn`t stay nights away from her. So --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Amanda. Let me ask you about that very briefly. The reason why the dad had the child was that Trista went into rehab. Look, I`m in recovery, 16 years, will be 17 years in April hopefully from alcoholicism. I`m a recovering alcoholic. I admire Trista for going into rehab. When you have a problem, you do something about it.
How long was she, in rehab, and what was the substance she was getting treated for?
BENNER: I believe she was in there -- I want to say ten days, only because in Maine there`s no long term rehab you can be in the first place. She placed both of her kids with her sister.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: What was her substance?
BENNER: Her substance? Mainly alcohol to my knowledge. She had a difficult time being alone and raising two kids, and, you know, what not. She does alcohol.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amanda, is she sober now?
BENNER: Yes, she is sober. I`ve seen her a couple different times since all of this has happened. And she is nothing but sober. She`s just trying to stay strong. I mean, --
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, I admire her for that. And to the worst circumstances to stay sober under is astounding because this is got to be a test.
Amanda, I know she is upset that some people have pointed the finger at her. How far away was she at the time of her daughter`s disappearance?
BENNER: She was miles away. I mean, she was in Portland or South Portland and I`m not sure where she was at that point in time, at that very moment. But she was in South Portland. That`s where she was staying. She had no vehicle. She has no means of getting there. Justin wouldn`t allow her, you know, to see Ayla. And there`s no way at all -- I would bet my life on it, that Trista had nothing to do with any of this. And that`s what`s frustrating, as everyone is saying things about her. Everyone is talking about it, and it is -- I mean, if Ayla went outside with her shoes off, Trista was upset, because she was worried about getting a disease.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Did you ever see the little girl, Ayla, with bruises after coming home from being with her father?
BENNER: Her mother and everyone that was there had seen the bruises. It was supposedly that, you know, she wasn`t being watched closely in the ball pit. And for my understanding there hasn`t been ball pits in chuck cheese bird at least over a year.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Alright. We`re going to take a brief break. Amanda, stay right where you are. We have more questions to ask you about the paternity issue and we`re taking your calls. 1-877-JVM SAYS. 1-877-586- 7297.
Later, accused white killer Drew Peterson gets the lifetime movie treatment, the ratings through the roof even Drew watched it. And we are going to tell you what Drew said. And we are going to talk live to Drew Peterson`s attorney about whether this is going to mess up his upcoming murder trial.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I had no idea on what any of this talking about --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He wants to touch you. He said he believes he helped you dispose of your wife`s body.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And he waited almost 24 hours to bring her to the emergency room. I want to know reasons to why -- why do you wait almost 24 hours to bring a child who -- he told me himself she screamed bloody murder when they fell. Do you wait almost 24 hours to go have her checked out?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ayla`s dad was criticized when he didn`t immediately make a public plea, hey, we want to find my missing daughter. When we didn`t immediately reveal who was in the house. He tried to fix that by going on NBC`s "Today" show. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DIPIETRO: Initially the first few days I was emotionally incapable of coming out to do an interview. And I had been advised that by coming on doing an interview by law enforcement it could possibly hinder the investigation. And I`m here to help in any way I can.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ-MITCHELL: We`ve tried to reach Justin DiPietro without success, he or his representatives invited on the show any time. We want to be fair, we are talking to Amanda Benner, an exclusive interview. She`s baby Ayla`s godmother, and the best friend of the baby Ayla`s mom, Trista.
Amanda, you have you information you say about the paternity issue with Justin, that he questioned the paternity, that he took some kind of -- or demanded a paternity test, what do you know?
BENNER: When Trista first got pregnant she was actually staying with me. She had gone to see Justin and told him she was having a baby, and that it was his. He denied it. They ended up having to get a DNA test through DHS, which proved he was the father of Ayla. And then he continued on having nothing to do with her.
He was at one point going to go and sign his rights over to her. He wanted absolutely nothing to do with this child. And it took until the point that Trista was like, fine, if you`re not going to be there for her, and you want nothing to do with my daughter who you created, this amazing little girl, then, you know what, fine, sign your rights over. And as soon as she said that.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amanda, why do you think he then moved in to take the child when Trista was in rehab?
BENNER: I don`t know. A couple months before she was going to go into rehab, he started all of a sudden wanting to have something to do with Ayla, for what reason I have no idea. He would take her, you know, once in a while for a couple hours during the day and would return her back to Trista. She didn`t even have her for any amount of time until all of that had happened.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Amanda, I want to ask you to hang on. I want to bring in some of the experts we have lined up to help find Ayla.
Now, I want to go back to Amanda Benner. This is our exclusive interview with baby Ayla`s godmother and the best friend of the missing child`s mom. Baby Ayla`s mother started to take a polygraph, but she could not complete it because of a medical condition. Tell us about that. What`s the medical condition that stopped Trista from completing her polygraph?
BENNER: I have no idea what they were referring to. I didn`t get into any of those details with Trista.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK. And I know that you wanted to make a point about, so much has been said about the fact that she went into rehab, and she had a problem with substances. But your point that I believe you wanted to make, is that you feel she`s a very good mother. Tell us.
BENNER: Trista is one of the best mothers I have ever met. My -- I personally have a daughter that is almost six years old that Trista has done nothing but help me out with, care for, watch while I`m at work. And, you know, she`s a great person. The kids in general, let alone, her own kids.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: How is she holding up?
BENNER: She`s -- I mean the best she can. She`s devastated. Every day I call her, she doesn`t know what she`s doing at that moment. She`s like, you know, I`m not making plans. I`m not doing anything. I`m living minute to minute. You know, she`s trying to be strong for her son, for Ayla, herself, and, you know, on top of trying to stay sober, honestly, I don`t know how she does it.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, we wish her the best. And I really hope that she does stay sober, because she needs to be sober in this extraordinary time.
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01-30-2012, 08:40 PM #7
Misc. Info Timeline:
Dec.19th2011Interview with neighbor that heard car:
Dec.22nd2011 Deputy Attorneys General, Andrew Benson, and Bill Stokes visit JD Home:
Assistant Attorney General Bill Stokes and the Maine State Police mobile unit were at Ayla's home in Waterville, while cadaver dogs were searching an area in the woods near the Waterville airport.
Dec.22nd2011 Livewire updates by Becky Sawtelle/Staff WMTV:
Search crews are currently in the woods behind a church looking for any possible clues.
Crime scene tape is up around the Reynold's home on Violette Avenue.
Bill Stokes, chief of the criminal division at the Maine attorney general's office, is at the scene.
Detectives have been walking around the property with white protective booties covering their feet.
Dec.23rd2011 Vigil held in Portland
Ayla's family and friends sent out hopeful messages, saying the more attention that remains on the case the more likely it is that someone will come forward with information that will bring Ayla back to her family.
Trista Reynolds put out a plea for anyone who has any information that they think might be helpful in the search to please come forward.
"I will get her home. Ayla, I love you," said Reynolds. "I'm not going nowhere."
Dec.28th2011 Ayla on America's Most Wanted
Dec.29th2011 quoted from article:
Police on Thursday confirmed that two vehicles seized from the driveway by police Dec. 19 have been returned to their owners.
McCausland said Massachusetts detectives offered special investigative equipment to aid in the investigation.
Dec.31st2011 great article regarding custody. more@link.
"DiPietro said he was going to ... retrieve his daughter and wanted police to go," Cornelio said. "He explained that he and the mother had an agreement that if she went into treatment, he would take custody."
Jan.1st2012 quoted from article:
According to Department of Public Safety Spokesman Steve McCausland, Maine State Police "released the house back to the occupants" late Saturday afternoon.
Jan 6th video@link:
Texas Center Helping Justin DiPietro Find Ayla
The Laura Recovery Center based in Texas is helping Ayla Reynold's Father Justin DiPietro find his daughter. Part of their advice was to speak to the media.
Jan.9th quoted from article:
Briana Roberts, 23, is facing a charge of aggravated trafficking in oxycodone after drug enforcement agents executed a search warrant at her Pine Street residence, Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland said.
Jan.11th quoted from article:
State police and the Maine Warden Search conducted an extensive search of the river for signs of missing toddler Ayla Reynolds on Wednesday.
Jan 17th JD attends vigil
Jan.20th quoted from article:
WATERVILLE -- A new website dedicated to 21-month-old Ayla Reynolds offers fresh details about the day the toddler was reported missing more than a month ago, describing "instant panic" as people awoke to find the toddler had vanished from her bedroom.
January 24 quoted from article:
The author of a website dedicated to missing toddler Ayla Reynolds said she anticipated controversy when she launched the site last week.
"I expected there would be a firestorm. I just didn't expect that I would give them so much material to work with," Angela Harry said Monday during a phone interview.
January 28 2012
Vigil held for Ayla Reynolds in Waterville
01-30-2012, 08:41 PM #8
Ayla Reynolds website set up by TR family:
Ayla Reynolds Social Media Thread:
Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community
Photobucket account, thanks to WS user PlainJaneDoe:
Local News Sites:
Links to some local reporter Twitter accounts:
Last edited by KateB; 04-04-2015 at 07:05 PM. Reason: repair url tag.
02-03-2012, 06:13 AM #9
LE Press Conferences/Statements:
January 31, 2012 more@link:
Hope is fading among investigators who have spent six weeks looking for 20-month-old Ayla Reynolds and they have intensified their search for a body, law enforcement sources told Newscenter 5 Monday.
A State Police spokesman said they "hope" to find the little girl, but investigators grow "more concerned as time passes."
Jan. 30, 2012 more@link:
A Maine State Police spokesman reacted angrily Monday to what he called an “unattributed, irresponsible and inaccurate” report on the Ayla Reynolds case that aired on Boston television station WCVB.
WCVB reporter Michele McPhee is credited with a story that appeared Monday night on the Boston ABC affiliate as well as an article online under the headline “Police Believe Missing Maine Toddler Dead."
Jan. 31, 2011 more@link:
"We have searched that home and we have found not one piece of evidence to lead us to believe Ayla was abducted," Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety said. "We think one or all three of the adults have info they haven't told us and we need that info in order to find Ayla."
January 31, 2012 more@link:
"We think there are still people out there that have specific information that they haven't told us. Not only the three individuals in the home, but there may be others. One call can crack this case wide-open and we're waiting for that call," McCausland said.
Feb 02, 2012:
Police say new leads continue to come in the search for Ayla. They also say they plan to tell the public "more" about the case in hopes that someone will come forward with new information. Ayla's family is doing the same.
TR and Family Statements w/transcripts:
January 31, 2012 more@link:
A defiant Trista Reynolds yesterday defended her decision to announce that police have found her missing daughter’s blood in the home where the toddler went missing six weeks ago.
“It’s the truth, and why would we hold back the truth?” Reynolds told the Herald about weekend reports that investigators found her blue-eyed toddler Ayla’s blood in the little girl’s father’s basement. Police confirmed it to reporters only after Reynolds revealed it on a website dedicated to finding her daughter.
Feb 02, 2012:
RR: This family needs closure. Everyday I go to work and I hurt. It just kills me. You know? I try to focus on my job, my responsibilies, you know? And I give it 110%, but at the same time, she's right here. And then I can't wait to get home at night so I can look at her picture and we can talk. (crying) I didn't want to do this, but I need to get this out. Just please bring her home. Please. I beg of you just bring her home.
BH: This is my buggy. This is her when she was born. I have not gone one day without this child, this is the longest it's been. I need her home. Trista needs her home. Trista's days are getting harder.
TR: I have been being negative about it a little bit but, what mother wouldn't right now? I mean, it's a mother's worst nightmare has become more of a nightmare than anything right now. Just, I just hope and pray, like, very anxious for that call. I'm waiting.
Feb 02, 2012 video@link:
TR: I can't wait to see her running to me and just, arms wide open being like "mommy", "mommy", and just hearing her, everything she's got to say. Just, I picture a lot to keep me going.
TR: I can't. I can't think about it or what had happened, uh, to her, or why it is there. There could be many reasons, you know, there is no one to blame right now because no one knows. It's, just, I'm still trying to comprehend it right now.
TR: He is the only one who knows what I'm going through. He's going through the same exact thing I'm going through. Missing his daughter, we're missing our daughter right now. Like, if it's anybody who knows, he knows what I'm feeling on the inside every single day.
TR: How do you sleep at night? How do you eat? How do you go on with your daily life knowing like, up here, that you've done something so wrong? How do you just..how do you find it to be okay?
TR: How big has she gotten? How long is her hair? How many teeth does she got? How many words has she learned right now?
TR: Ayla and I will be reunited. She will. She's coming home.
JD and Family Statements:
January 31, 2012
Yesterday at his home, where despairing people keep adding to the pile of frozen teddy bears and angel figurines, DiPietro’s sister directed the Herald to an attorney in Augusta, who could not be reached for comment last night.
Nancy Grave and JVM Transcripts and Video (thank you to WS user Patty G for the videos):
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 1/30/12 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Issues 1/31/12 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 2/1/12 - YouTube
Ayla Reynolds: Nancy 2/2/12 - YouTube
GRACE: We are taking your calls. A stunning development in the search for 1-and-a-half-year-old baby Ayla, Waterville, Maine. Blood found in the basement of Daddy`s home is absolutely that of Ayla`s, police confirming. It`s more than she would have bled from a cut. Tonight, we`re trying to find out what type of a blood spatter, smear or dropping it is. And apparently, there`s somebody else`s blood there, too.
With me, special guest Stephen McCausland, spokesman from the Maine State Police. You know, that`s interesting that the family says there were other oddities around the home. But Stephen McCausland, according to what we`ve been told, nothing was stolen and there was no forced entry. What oddity could there have been except for the baby was gone?
MCCAUSLAND: We have seized hundreds of items of potential evidence from inside that home over a two-week period in December. And there is not one piece of evidence at this point that leads us to believe that an abduction took place.
That`s why we`re looking and asking these thee adults that were there that night, that we think that one of them has information that they haven`t told us and -- because the story of Ayla being abducted just does not pass the straight face test.
GRACE: You know, Maine -- the Maine population is known for being very matter-of-fact and straightforward in a good way. When you say, Stephen McCausland, their story does not pass the straight face test, what do you mean by that?
MCCAUSLAND: We think that they know more than they`re telling us because the -- because of what I just said. And Susan was in the house. It`s a small home. Someone came in that door, went into Ayla`s room, grabbed her and they vanished in the middle of the night with three adults inside that home and didn`t see or hear anything? It doesn`t make sense.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police in Maine are searching frantically.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have worked night and day trying to find Ayla.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Daughter`s mysterious disappearance.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I want to know what happened to my daughter.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The blood evidence...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That we found in the basement.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: DiPietro refused comment about the blood that was found in his home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This family, again, has gone through hell, and I`m tired of it!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: We are taking your calls. A stunning blow to the family of baby Ayla. They discover blood in Daddy`s basement, is in fact, that of baby Ayla`s. With me, special guests Susan Candiotti, CNN national correspondent, along with Stephen McCausland, the spokesman from the Maine State Police.
Back to you, Susan Candiotti. The family says there are other oddities in the home the morning when they realize Ayla`s gone? Number one, Susan, you know my twins. No way are they going to sleep all night from 8:00 PM to 9:00 AM. That`s just not going to happen. I go in there to make sure they`re still breathing if they go over three or four hours without waking up for something. So right there, I`ve got a problem with the story.
But what other oddities are they talking about or could they be talking about, Susan Candiotti?
CANDIOTTI: Well, that`s a very good question, Nancy. You know, obviously, I tried to find out, What oddities are you talking about, and the answer I got was, We told the police what the oddities were. We told them everything.
You heard what Stephen McCausland had to say just now, that he doesn`t think police have the full story. They`ve gathered a ton of evidence. They`re trying to analyze that evidence. And as you heard him say, they find nothing to indicate that someone broke into that house. So what the oddities were, I don`t know.
GRACE: Back to Stephen McCausland, spokesman from the Maine State Police. He is here and he is taking your calls. He may not answer your question, but he`s taking your question.
Stephen, again, thank you for being with us. I want to go back to the whole theory that there were oddities, as the family says, about that, that next morning when they woke up. Oddities such as what, Stephen?
MCCAUSLAND: Again, what Phoebe told investigators is something we`re keeping to ourselves.
MCCAUSLAND: Obviously, this is a major investigation, Nancy. You understand that.
GRACE: I do.
MCCAUSLAND: And there are some things we can talk about and then some things we just can`t.
GRACE: Well, I know this. In response to my question, you said, We took hundreds of items from that home. In other words, whatever oddity they said they found, you got it. You know what it is and you`ve investigated it. I hear you loud and clear, Stephen McCausland.
Stephen, is there any link to the fact that the mom went to court the day before to try to get full custody of the baby girl? Did the daddy know that?
MCCAUSLAND: Dad did not know that at all.
GRACE: Everyone, with us, Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine State Police. When we get back, a look inside Ayla`s home.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Maine State Police found blood at the house where the Waterville toddler was last seen.
MCCAUSLAND: DiPietro refused to comment about the blood that was found in his home.
You know, Stephen, it feels like I`m Alice in Wonderland. Everything is upside down because I tell you something, whoever had my child when they go missing, I would not have snagged up to them and give them a peck on the cheek. All right? I`m not inciting violence, Stephen. I`m not. But I would definitely have taken a swing at them. All right?
Fine, I`ll just put that out there. But Stephen, the police are saying, quote, "Not one piece of evidence to back that up, that being the forced entry or the kidnap.
What do you mean not one piece of evidence? You mean no window was up, no marks on the door, what does that mean not one piece of evidence?
STEPHEN MCCAUSLAND, SPOKESMAN, MAINE STATE POLICE: It means simply that of the hundreds of pieces of potential evidence that we have seized from inside that home, we had found nothing yet to back up the story of an abduction. And we have grave doubts that that ever happened.
GRACE: Stephen, another question. Part of the blood that was Ayla`s that you found in daddy`s basement, and I`m referring to daddy`s basement, this is mother`s home. You said or it`s been stated was visible to the naked eye, but the other portion was not. It was found by Luminol. Was the blood close together, the blood that was visible and invisible?
MCCAUSLAND: Again, asking for more specifics, Nancy, that I can`t get into. But you are correct, some of the blood was visible. Some of it was detected by Luminol. And that is some of the evidence that we seized from that home along with hundreds of other pieces.
GRACE: And back to spokesman for the Maine State Police, Stephen McCausland.
Stephen, again, regarding the blood found in the basement, was there anything to suggest that there had been a cleanup? Was there a blood smear, for instance, with a wash rag? I`m suspicious about the Luminol blood.
MCCAUSLAND: Again, Nancy, I can confirm that there was blood in the basement and the blood was Ayla`s. But beyond that there is information, obviously, that we have gathered that we need to keep to ourselves as this investigation is still very much active and ongoing. And I just can`t answer that question.
GRACE: I`m not here to help or to answer any questions. Hey, somebody just gave me the T-shirt. That`s what it sounds like, to Stephen McCausland, spokesman, Maine State Police. If he wants to help, hint, don`t run out of the police station when they show you a crime scene photo. Answer questions. Reports are daddy no longer cooperating. Is that the true?
MCCAUSLAND: No, that is not the terminology I`ve used. Dad has talked to us when we`ve called him. He continues to do so.
GRACE: OK. I`m going to throw this one. It`s a hardball, to Stephen McCausland. I got a bad feeling he`s not going to answer it.
Stephen, this is not anything peculiar to the investigation. Can you just tell me what all is in the basement? Is it just a bedroom?
MCCAUSLAND: It`s basically a partially finished basement. There`s some paneling, as I recall, some furniture. And again, the regular items that are usually in the basement.
GRACE: Does his bedroom take up the -- is it out in the main area of the basement or is it a separate room?
MCCAUSLAND: The basement is basically one giant room.
I want to go back -- I want to go back to Steve McCausland.
Stephen, is there anything else you can tell us about the scene tonight. Anything else about the search for baby Ayla? What are police doing now?
MCCAUSLAND: We`ve worked on this night and day for six solid weeks and we`re not going to stop until we find her. I also want to just make sure that your listening audience understands the largest reward ever offered in Maine state history for a missing person is still out there. Thirty thousand dollars, for information that leads to Ayla`s location. We need a call. We need a break
Straight out to my exclusive guest, Amanda Benner, the best friend of Baby Ayla`s mom Trista. You just heard from Trista a moment ago on tape.
Amanda, thank you so much for joining us. Can you tell us a little bit more about what Trista, what Trista, Ayla`s mom`s reaction was when she found out this weekend that there was a lot of blood -- I would say more than a cut, OK -- of her daughter`s blood discovered in the very basement where her father lives. That is his room. What was her initial reaction, Amanda?
AMANDA BENNER, TRISTA`S FRIEND (via phone): Well, I first seen Trista, which was actually at the vigil for Ayla. She -- she was just a mess. She found out like a half hour, hour before she had gone there. And she was just -- she didn`t know what to say or what to do, how to react.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Why did cops wait, do you think, Amanda, to tell the mother of the missing child until now that there was this blood found? This blood was apparently -- the child disappeared in late December. The blood was found shortly thereafter in the home. Why do you think cops waited all this time before informing the mother?
BENNER: I don`t know. I honestly believe that the cops, I could be wrong, but I`m pretty sure the cops weren`t even going to tell Trista. And the reasoning to why they even told her now is because there was a leak in the press.
But I have to ask, how hard was it to hug the father of the child when the child disappeared on his watch, and now they just announced they found blood in the very basement where he is sleeping with his girlfriend and that girlfriend`s son?
BENNER: I can imagine it would be pretty hard. I know that she was trying to keep herself together the best she could. And they didn`t want any confrontation at the vigil. I mean it was for Ayla. It wasn`t, you know, for the arguing or the debating or trying to figure out who did what and what went wrong. But I know it was extremely hard on her.
GRACE: Would people normally be walking around on the sides and the back? So that would not be unusual.
I`m hearing in my ear, now joining us along with Bonnie Druker is spokesman for the Maine State Police Stephen McCausland. Mr. McCausland, thank you for being with us. I guess I should say Officer. You say that there has been a lot of inaccurate reporting, that nobody within the Maine State Police is saying that Ayla is dead. Explain, sir.
STEPHEN MCCAUSLAND, MAINE STATE POLICE: Just what you said, Nancy. That is not terminology we`ve used. There was an unfortunate report out of a Boston TV station last night. We quickly clarified that with our own news release, saying that was inaccurate, irresponsible, and unattributable. And we stand by that.
Our hope from day one is that we`ll be able to locate baby Ayla safe and return her home. Obviously, as the days grow to weeks, and now, obviously, now in our seventh week, our concern grows, but our hope is still there.
GRACE: You know, Stephen, that is our prayer, as well, that baby Ayla come home alive. Officer McCausland, let me ask you -- you`re standing there in the snow. Do you recall the temperature outside the night baby Ayla goes missing? The original theory was that maybe she had walked outside and wandered off on her own. I find that extremely implausible.
MCCAUSLAND: This was on the night of December 16th into the morning of December 17th. I don`t remember the temperatures, but in Maine, we`ve had a fairly mild winter up here. But obviously, the little girl did not wander out of that home. We dispelled that rumor on week two. And obviously, in the last few days, we`ve obviously stated up front we have serious doubts that an abduction ever took place.
Back to Stephen McCausland joining us there at police headquarters -- Stephen McCausland, Maine State Police spokesperson. Stephen, since the daddy ran out of the police station, has he given a comment on the crime scene photos of Ayla`s blood in the basement?
MCCAUSLAND: We`ve talked to Justin on a number of occasions. When we`ve called him, he`s talked to us, and we hope that dialogue will continue.
GRACE: Mr. McCausland, why do you, if you do believe, the blood indicates there was a clean-up?
MCCAUSLAND: I`ve never said that, Nancy. You`re the one that`s saying that. All we`ve confirmed is that there was blood found in the basement and that blood is Ayla`s.
GRACE: Well, Stephen, are we wrong in saying it is indicative of a clean-up?
MCCAUSLAND: Again, that is terminology we have never talked about.
But I want to go back to the forensics and not put all my eggs in one basket, and that is the demeanor of the father, who is not named a suspect at this time. Mr. McCausland, as to the blood in the basement, when I asked you was I wrong in reporting that it looked as if it had been wiped away, there was a smear mark of some form, maybe even picked up by luminol, is that inaccurate?
MCCAUSLAND: Nancy, I addressed this question both yesterday in our interview and today. We`ve confirmed there`s blood and we`ve confirmed it`s Ayla`s. We have not gotten into any more details...
MCCAUSLAND: ... and I`m not going to tonight as well. There are some things I can talk about, and there are some things I can`t, and I`m sure you understand that.
GRACE: Stephen McCausland, I want to ask you also about the three people there in the home. The timeline that we have been presented starts with the evening before that she`s reported missing, that around 8:00 PM, she`s put to bed by her father. And I`m just wondering, Mr. McCausland, did anyone else corroborate that, or is he the only one establishing that timeline? When did anyone outside of that home last see baby Ayla alive?
MCCAUSLAND: Good questions, an most of those are investigative details we`re not going to get into. We`re going under the premise that little Ayla was there that night.
Misc. Info Timeline:
The liquid, luminol, can be used to detect trace amounts of blood that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye. Even when blood is cleaned up from a surface, traces remain that can't be seen. When luminol comes into contact with blood it glows.
Feb 2nd Waterville Police Blotter:
11:48 a.m., criminal trespass was reported on Violette Avenue.
Last edited by KateB; 04-04-2015 at 07:06 PM. Reason: repair url tag.
02-05-2012, 11:05 AM #10
Windows broken at Waterville home where Ayla Reynolds was reported missing
Bangor Daily News
"“I say disturbing because whoever went there probably knew that there were people inside the house, including a small child,” Massey said. “Breaking the windows with that much force and sending glass flying all over the place, waking up people at that hour of the night, waking a small child, exposing them to the cold and possible injury. I think that’s kind of cowardly.”
Massey said he believes this is the first time the home has been vandalized and said he isn’t aware of any threats towards the DiPietros."
"At the time of her disappearance, Ayla was living with her father in Waterville. Her mother, Trista Reynolds, lives in Portland, about 75 miles south.
After the vandalism, Reynolds and her family released a statement saying Trista feels “that it is none of her business … but thinks it to be ignorant and rude.”"You can hold back from the suffering of the world. You have free permission to do so and it is in accordance with your nature.
But perhaps this very holding back is the one suffering you could have avoided.
Be not simply good. Be good for something.
02-07-2012, 08:59 AM #11
LE Press Conferences/Statements:
February 3rd more@link:
Investigators said Friday that their determination to find missing toddler Ayla Reynolds has not weakened even as the number of tips coming in from the public has begun to taper off.
Underwater searches of the Kennebec River and Messalonskee Stream throughout the day Friday turned up no new evidence in the case.
February 3rd more@link:
McCausland prefaced all remarks by saying he wouldn't disclose any investigative details about the case, but he confirmed that police have recently been in contact with the three adults who were in 29 Violette Ave. the night before Ayla was reported missing from the home: Justin DiPietro, Ayla's father; his girlfriend Courtney Roberts; and sister Elisha DiPietro.
Asked if they were cooperating with the investigation, McCausland stopped short of a direct answer.
"There has been contact, and we hope that contact will continue," he said.
McCausland also confirmed that Ayla's paternal grandmother, Phoebe DiPietro, was not in the home the night before the toddler was reported missing.
Feb. 04, 2012 re: broken windows:
After the vandalism, Reynolds and her family released a statement saying Trista feels “that it is none of her business … but thinks it to be ignorant and rude.”
Feb. 04, 2012 more@link:
Two windows were broken at the home where a toddler was reported missing seven weeks ago, officials said Saturday.
The missing girl’s grandmother, Phoebe DiPietro, called police at about 11:15 p.m. Friday to report that someone was throwing things through the windows at her Waterville home, police said in a statement.'
Feb. 6th more@link:
Waterville Police say the father of missing toddler Ayla Reynolds, Justin DiPietro, and his older brother, 27-year-old Lance DiPietro, were involved in a fight Monday that landed another man in the hospital.
Feb. 6th more@link:
The uncle, Lance A. DiPietro, 27, allegedly kicked Justin Linnell, 22, in the face after a brief scuffle in a parking lot off College Avenue.
LostNMissing and Laura Recovery Center have teamed up to sponsor Ayla's billboards in NJ accross from Meadowland Stadium and seven other locations in the Philadelphia area. Thank you to Interstate Outdoors Advertising and Steen Advertising.
02-19-2012, 04:02 AM #12
LE Press Conferences/Statements:
Lance DiPietro, of 19 Ash St., was driven to and from the scene by Ayla's father, Justin DiPietro, according to Waterville police Chief Joseph Massey, who described the incident as follows:
About noon Monday, the DiPietro brothers were driving north on College Avenue near Hazelwood Avenue. Across the street, they saw Linnell walking north. Justin DiPietro drove his SUV into a nearby parking lot and stopped. Next, Lance DiPietro climbed out of the passenger side carrying a wooden novelty baseball bat and confronted the man.
"DiPietro confronted him and said, 'You've been saying stuff about my family. Knock it off,'" Massey said.
DiPietro then dropped the bat and stepped toward Linnell, and there was a short struggle.
Linnell fell to the ground and suffered a large cut on the back of his head. While he was on the ground, DiPietro kicked him in the face, Massey said. Police photos of the facial injury are consistent with a kick, he added.
2/13/12 quoted from article:
Citing anonymous sources at the Maine State Police, Ayla Reynolds' maternal family released a statement Monday that the child's father, Justin DiPietro, failed a police polygraph test, bought life insurance on the child after taking custody of her and sought termination of child support payments after he had custody of her.
The statement was released on the website www.aylareynolds.com, which is run by Trista Reynolds' step-father Jeff Hanson.
Maine Department of Public Safety Spokesman Steve McCausland said Monday that he was aware of the Reynolds' statement, but wouldn't offer new information on the investigation.
The Waterville Police Department has charged Jeremy Hanson with one count of Criminal Mischief in connection with the breaking of several windows of the Dipietro residence. Hanson, 19, of Clinton, met with officers last night at the Waterville Police station to be interviewed about the case. Hanson confessed and was subsequently summoned for Criminal Mischief and Violation of Conditions of Release. The second charge stems from the fact that when Hanson broke the windows at 29 Violette Avenue, he was out on bail from a State Police case where he was charged with Driving to Endanger, Criminal Mischief, and Reckless Conduct with a Weapon. The Waterville Police Department does not have any details related to the earlier charges, which do not relate to the Dipietro family. It is unclear whether Hanson has any connection to the residents of 29 Violette Avenue.
Hanson left the Waterville Police Department after his interview and after being charged with the two offenses. He will appear in the Waterville District Court for the charges on May 8th, unless arraigned earlier.
On February 3rd at approximately 11:15PM, Phoebe Dipietro called 9-1-1 to report that someone was breaking windows at her residence. Police responded and found that multiple windows were damaged by an unknown object. A K-9 unit from the Kennebec County Sheriff's Office responded and conducted a track which led from the residence to a side street near the home, where the scent terminated leading investigators to believe that the suspect left in a vehicle.
Chief Massey subsequently held a press conference to discuss the incident, calling it "a cowardly act," and stressed that harassing, intimidating and illegal behavior was not helpful, and distracted investigators from their work to find Ayla Reynolds.
As the search for Ayla Reynolds approaches two months in length, investigators continue to sift through tips and leads that now number more than 900, according to Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine State Police. McCausland said he expected the investigation to continue “quietly” this week, as opposed to very public searches in the Waterville area and press conferences that have punctuated the search for Ayla.
McCausland, who is the only law enforcement official making public statements about the case, has said that no one, including Trista Reynolds, has been ruled out as a suspect in Ayla’s disappearance. However, McCausland has said that investigators believe the three adults who were with Ayla on Dec.16 — Ayla’s father, Justin DiPietro; his sister, Elisha DiPietro; and his girlfriend, Courtney Roberts — know more about her disappearance than they have told police, including how Ayla’s blood wound up in the basement of the DiPietro home at 29 Violette Avenue.
State police spokesman Steve McCausland said Thursday that the paternal family of missing child Ayla Reynolds could be doing more to help investigators.
He said detectives are encouraging the DiPietro family to keep Ayla's name in the public, something the family of Ayla's mother, Trista Reynolds, has been doing through a website, billboards and interviews with the news media.
"We continue to encourage the immediate family to keep Ayla in the headlines and to talk about her," McCausland said. "One side is doing that, and the other side is not."
McCausland says investigators have contact with the three adults who were the last to see Ayla, but that's about it. "The circumstances under their first version that the child was abducted, we dispelled weeks ago because it just doesn't hold water," McCausland said.
RR: I mean, look at her. She is so beautiful. She is. I don't know why people can't come forth and say something, you know. But this is what I want, for her to come home, to be with her family again. But again, I ask the public, and I beg everybody, please help us. Help us bring her home. Somebody say something. Come forth and say something because every day gets longer and longer.
2/13/12 from aylareynolds.com:
Sources close to the investigation have revealed some unsettling information that raises many questions. It seems that in addition to failing the polygraph test, Justin bolted from the police station after being shown photos of Ayla's luminol enhanced blood. We were also told that in addition to recently filing for termination of child support payments, Justin had taken out a life insurance policy on Ayla less than a week after taking her from Reynolds' custody.
Some of the best detectives in the country are working day and night on this case, trying to put together the missing pieces. We are still desparately hoping that the adults present the night of December 16th will come forward with the information police believe they are withholding. The pain caused by their unwillingness to confess the truth is multiplied every day and the sooner they unburden themselves the sooner this nightmare will end. Please do the right thing and speak the truth for Ayla's sake.
Nearly two months after Ayla Reynolds was reported missing from her Waterville home, the toddler's mother, Trista Reynolds, says she's considering filing a lawsuit against the Department of Health and Human Services.
Reynolds claims DHHS workers didn't ensure Ayla's safety by conducting necessary checks and reviews, and says her daughter's disappearance may have been avoided altogether if they had.
"DHHS just didn't do their job," Reynolds told The Portland Daily Sun late last week.
Reporter: Reynolds says DHHS promised to check on the toddler and conduct background checks on those living in the home with Dipietro. And tonight, she says that never happened.
TR: It was agreed on paper when I was in rehab. Like, stated, written down, in front of two DHS workers, the supervisor, two doctors and an attorney. And you're going to tell me that you didn't go check on my daughter? For what reason? Give me one good reason as to why you didn't go check on my daughter. So yeah, I'm going to go up against you and I am going to fight you because I'm sitting here every single day wondering where Ayla is, what happened to her, and why nobody cared to check on her to make sure she was safe.
TR: Like, it's hard, and it's getting harder, like, we're on Valentine's day, and me and Ayla, this was one of our like, favorite holidays last year, we just spent the whole day together. We were each others valentine, you know? Like, I don't see her face. I don't hear her voice. I don't feel her touch. And not one person in that house can tell me what happened to my daughter.
TR: I can't do it anymore. Like, I want answers for Ayla.
TR: Within the same week that Justin took Ayla from me, he took out a life insurance on Ayla. Now, why did he take out that life insurance policy? I'm still trying to figure that one out myself. Because, who takes a life insurance policy out on their own child?
TR: You want to stop paying child support? Stop paying child support. But if you think your child is still alive, and you say you had nothing to do with this, why are you gonna go and terminate from paying child support if you believe she's coming home?
I was told that Justin had failed his lie detector. And that he- when he was shown a picture of Bugbug's blood, he up and bolted out of the police station. Why would you do that?
TR: You can't tell yourself that she's not coming home or she's dead because miracles do happen.
They should have checked on Ayla because, you know, maybe if they did, we probably would not be right here today.
She's still missing and she needs to come home and I'm really hoping that she is home before her second birthday.
TR: I'm done being nice.
I want to, you know, keep defending him, but how can I do that if he's not even talking to me or just explaining things? It's just not right. Not right at all.
I can just feel, like, I'm her mommy, you know, like, she's not okay. She's not alright, you know? So why keep playing the game that's being played? It's not a game. It's serious. And everyone that was inside that house that night, that knows what happened to Ayla, they're making this a game because they're the ones that can end this in a matter of seconds. All you gotta do is speak up and say something. Whether it was meant to be done or whether it was an accident.
Reporter: Do you think that if they said what they knew that Ayla would come home? That's all that is missing is them?
TR: Either she would come home or we would have our closure.
But you've gotta think, like, look at every evidence we've got right now. Not any of the evidence is pointing toward anything positive. Everything is pointing toward negative. So, how is that fair to her? Like then I wonder, you know, did she suffer? Was it- if it was the worst, was it just quick and easy or did she suffer from it? You know, like, that's not cool for a mom to wonder every day.
I just, I do got my doubts, but then I tell myself, I gotta keep the faith because miracles happen. They do happen.
2/15/12 video@link more in article@link:
TR: I am going to try and sue DHS, and I will go against them and I will fight them. They- it was an agreement, like, written, I told everybody, it was two doctors, two DHS workers, a supervisor and an attorney present at the family team meeting when we made the agreement. The only way Ayla could stay in that house with Justin was if everyone got background checks done, the house was evaluated and approved of like, DHS standards and Ayla was happy and content and safe there. And even the supervisor from the department stated that she did not go check on my daughter knowing it was our agreement.
TR: Like, I hate it, I should not be sitting on TV asking and begging and pleading for people to bring my daughter home or bring justice for her.
I hate cameras. And I hate talking to people. I'll be the first one to admit it. But this is for my daughter. And if this is what I have to do, if I have to sit in front of a camera all day long for people to know that she is missing, and that I want her home and I want justice, I'll do it. Whether I like being in front of it or not.
Ron Reynolds said Thursday his family is being torn apart because the father, Justin DiPietro, and others in the Waterville home won’t explain what happened before Ayla Reynolds was reported missing on Dec. 17.
“That eats me up every day,” an emotional Reynolds said from Portland, where he lives. “Why didn’t they protect her? Why didn’t he protect her? He was responsible for her safety and welfare.”
As tomorrow marks two months since Ayla has been reported missing we continue to keep her foremost in our thoughts and will mark this sad date in our own personal way. We want to thank everyone that has kept Ayla in their hearts and prayers. Your concern for Ayla continues to be encouraging to us as we continue to hope for her safe return even while turning coolly to the business of securing justice for Ayla.
TR: About two months into this, and I still don't have that one thing to tell me where she is. Or to tell me at least what had happened to her that night.
Yeah, I uh, I did text him this morning, and was just, bluntly out like, look, we're on two months today. Like, do you even care? I haven't heard from you, you're not talking to me. And you know, just, like I said, you know, come on. Tell me.
I'm still right here. And I'm fighting. And I won't let anyone get away with this. Justice will be brought for you, princess. I love you.
JD and Family Statements:
"I just wanted to confront him and maybe have a war of words. It's pretty unfortunate that things escalated the way they did," Lance DiPietro said.
A short fight ensued. DiPietro knocked Linnell to the ground and kicked him in the face, according to police. DiPietro then got back into his brother's car and they continued toward Fairfield.
Justin DiPietro said he was unaware of the fight.
"I didn't see anything that happened," he said. "We didn't discuss what had happened."
A lawyer representing the grandmother and aunt of missing child Ayla Reynolds said Monday his clients do not know the circumstances behind her disappearance.
Steve Bourget, a general practice attorney in Augusta, said Phoebe DiPietro, 47, and Elisha DiPietro, 23, retained his services in early January, a few weeks after Ayla was reported missing from their home at 29 Violette Ave. The DiPietros approached him to serve as "a buffer between the press and their personal lives," Bourget said during a phone interview with the Morning Sentinel.
A source told The Sun that Maine State Police contacted the overnight store clerk at the Cumberland Farms, located on Pine Street in Portland's West End, saying that a credit card under the name of Justin DiPietro was used to purchase cigarettes at the store around 2 a.m. on Dec. 15, 2011.
Police were told that DiPietro was at the store with two other men, only one of which police were able to identify. The store clerk was asked to describe the men and the clothing they were wearing when they made the cigarette purchase and according to the source, the clerk was told the third man was a person of interest to the investigation.
Last edited by askfornina; 02-19-2012 at 06:22 AM.
02-24-2012, 12:35 PM #13
Ayla Reynold's Case Who's Who
TR - Trista Reynolds, Ayla's mother
PD - Phoebe DiPietro, Ayla's grandmother
People in Waterville House the night Ayla Disappeared:
JD - Justin DiPietro, Ayla's father
ED - Elisha DiPietro, Ayla's Aunt
GD - Gabrielle DiPietro, Elisha's baby/Ayla's cousin
CR - Courtney Roberts - Justin's girlfriend
(Also Courtney Roberts child)
LD - Lance DiPietro, Ayla's Uncle, arrested for street-beating of . . .
JL - Justin Linnel, father of Gabrielle DiPietro
BR - Briana Roberts, Courtney's sister, arrested in drug bust
Mentioned Here - Nancy Grace Transcript
AH - Angela Harry, blogger and friend of DiPietros
Mentioned Here and Here
DT - Derek Tudela, State Farm Agent - sold Ayla's life insurance
HD - Heidi Tudela, mother of Derek, (cousin of Angela Harry?)
Mentioned On Yahoo News - Life Insurance Story Littered with Discrepancies
Steve McCausland - Police Spokesperson
I'm the proud mother of a new attorney!
It's better to know some of the questions than all of the answers. ~ James Thurber
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good people to do nothing ~ Edmund Burke
Why shouldn't truth be stranger than fiction? Fiction, after all, has to make sense. ~ Mark Twain
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