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  1. #1
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    MI - Charles Rutherford, 34, & Lana Stempien (fd dec.), Aug 2005 - Detroit Boaters

    http://www.clickondetroit.com/news/4857624/detail.html

    Michigan State Police said in a Tuesday news release that a 27-foot Wellcraft boat named "Sea's Life" was found adrift on Friday at about 11 a.m. with its motor running and no persons onboard.

    The vessel was found after the Coast Guard's Sault Ste. Marie sector received a report that a boat matching its description had been located near Bois Blanc Island, Mich. The St. Ignace station launched its 47-foot life boat and tracked down the missing boat at that location.

    The Coast Guard suspended its search for Stempien and Rutherford on Saturday after an extensive two-day search covering the area between Marquette Island, Bois Blanc Island and Mackinac Island.

    The Michigan State Police St. Ignace Post said that it's keeping its investigation into the disappearance open.

    Authorities said at this point, they do not suspect foul play.



    This is a couple of attorneys from Detroit. Mid-30's, boyfriend & girlfriend, come from good families.

    What do you all think? Foul play or accident?

    I hope I posted this correctly. I am here all the time, but rarely post. I want your great opinions sleuthers!

    I know this girl....haven't seen her in years, though.


  2. #2
    SewingDeb's Avatar
    SewingDeb is offline "Sorry, I'm not qualified to land the plane."
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    This is a strange one....motor running, no passengers....police don't suspect foul play?
    What do they think happened, I wonder? A suicide pact?


  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SewingDeb
    This is a strange one....motor running, no passengers....police don't suspect foul play?
    What do they think happened, I wonder? A suicide pact?
    No, I don't think it was suicide. Like I said, this girl is an acquaintance from many years ago. This couple had much going for them. I talked to my aunt yesterday who knows this girl good, and she (Lana) had called her dad just prior to them disappearing, checking in with him. She also talked to a cousin of mine (her best friend) that same day. Nothing was amiss.

    But, I wonder, could working for the City of Detroit as an attorney play into this?

    Also, I heard from my aunt that the panic button was pushed at around 1:30 a.m.


  4. #4
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    Body may be missing lawyer

    The discovery of a body that washed up on a rocky shoal in northern Lake Huron may be the first step in unraveling a mystery in the disappearance of a Grosse Pointe Farms attorney who went missing along with her boyfriend two weeks ago as they boated to a Mackinac Island getaway.



    The body of a woman found Wednesday in Hammond Bay may be that of Lana Stempien, 35. A lakeside resident spotted the body around 4:30 p.m. about a quarter of a mile north of the Hammond Bay Marina, Michigan State Police Sgt. Michael Powell said Thursday.



    "The chances are 60% or greater that it's Lana's body," Powell said.

    Still missing is Stempien's boyfriend, Charles (Chuck) Rutherford, 34.

    rest of story at link

    http://www.freep.com/news/mich/missing26e_20050826.htm


  5. #5
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    Perhaps one of them had gone swimming (the water is in better condition out farther) and got into trouble so the other one jumped in, hoping to save the other and both drown. It says the motor was "on" but it doesn't say it was in gear moving, does it? I might have missed that part.


    What time did they go out on the boat?

    Since one person looks to be washed up, I am hoping it was just a horrible accident. Such a sad waste of two lives.
    Suzi


    Reputation is what you are in the light.
    Character is what you are in the dark.


  6. #6
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    Bumping UP - featured on Dateline tonight.


  7. #7
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    Beneath the Blue Waters.....Death on the Lake

    From Dateline NBC Fri. 1/13/06:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10807318/

    What secrets lie beneath the icy surface of Lake Huron? Did something sinister happen there? Do the chilly waters hold the elusive clues to a mysterious disappearance, a death, and a family’s desperate quest to unravel it all?

    It was tragedy that revolves around a vibrant young beauty in the prime of her life.

    More at Link....

    What do you all think happened aboard this boat?


  8. #8
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    I don't know, right now I lean toward foul play by a third party and that's partially because Chuck has never been located alive. I do think it is interesting that Lana's body was recovered and Chuck's was not. However, they could have gone in the water at different places...one scenario I have in mind is that someone they met up with on shore approached them on the water .... Chuck was made to go overboard first, Lana was then possibly sexually assaulted (though there is no documentation of this anywhere and I don't know if it has been ruled out), then she was pushed overboard.

    FWIW, that's my thoughts on it, right now anyway.


  9. #9
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    I think Chuck pushed her and made a new life for himself.
    Please help locate Mark Dribin http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...ht=Mark+Dribin and Ilene Misheloff http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...lene+Misheloff and bring them home.

    Parents watch your children. Free-range parenting leads to more child victims.

    Cruelty to humans begins with cruelty to animals.

    I believe in closure, not forgiveness. I'm also unapologetically judgemental.

    JeSuisJuif
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  11. #10
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    If that comment she made to a friend about if anything happens to her, check out her boyfriend, is true, why on earth would she go on a trip alone with him??


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  13. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julie
    If that comment she made to a friend about if anything happens to her, check out her boyfriend, is true, why on earth would she go on a trip alone with him??
    Even though she was a beautiful, well-to-do lawyer, she may have been trapped in an abusive relationship and not known how to end it or been in denial. Many women in these situations don't think they have the mental strength to end it. I saw the photos, although she was very tall, he was larger than her.
    Please help locate Mark Dribin http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...ht=Mark+Dribin and Ilene Misheloff http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...lene+Misheloff and bring them home.

    Parents watch your children. Free-range parenting leads to more child victims.

    Cruelty to humans begins with cruelty to animals.

    I believe in closure, not forgiveness. I'm also unapologetically judgemental.

    JeSuisJuif
    JeSuisCharlie



  14. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julie
    If that comment she made to a friend about if anything happens to her, check out her boyfriend, is true, why on earth would she go on a trip alone with him??
    I couldn't figure this one out, either. Perhaps, he talked her into going to patch things up. After she was on the trip, she realized it was a mistake. Remember, they said that they found an empty bottle of vodka on the boat and that they were sure that it wasn't her doing the drinking.

    Perhaps, he got drunk and belligerent--like he did that one night at the bar. People do all sorts of things when they are drunk. Plus, the condition of her shoe does indicate some type of struggle.


  15. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alice253
    I don't know, right now I lean toward foul play by a third party and that's partially because Chuck has never been located alive. I do think it is interesting that Lana's body was recovered and Chuck's was not. However, they could have gone in the water at different places...one scenario I have in mind is that someone they met up with on shore approached them on the water .... Chuck was made to go overboard first, Lana was then possibly sexually assaulted (though there is no documentation of this anywhere and I don't know if it has been ruled out), then she was pushed overboard.

    FWIW, that's my thoughts on it, right now anyway.
    My husband and I watched the show. Man, she was absolutely gorgeous. At first, we both thought what you said...third party...boyfriend dumped first...

    However, I can also see where he may have done it. However, WHY would be the question. They are both attorneys. He is from a wealthy family, if I recall correctly.

    The thing that made me suspect him was that she called another guy while she was on the boat. Her boyfriend was really jealous of this other guy. Plus, she told others that she was going to break up with her boyfriend. So, who knows?? Maybe, in a fit of rage, he made her strip and threw her overboard.


  16. #14
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    This case is one of the most baffling ever so I'm very suprised it isn't getting a lot more interest on these boards when so many other cases are.


  17. #15
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    Only4Justice, you have some very interesting inside info that the rest of us don't.

    I also think that it's possible Chuck and his family could be involved especially after the details you mentioned in your posts. But I see a definite problem here because Chuck was a district attorney in Detroit or somewhere in Michigan and he was from there and lived there his entire life so if he killed Lana and then his family helped him hide then he KNOWS he'll NEVER be able to show his face in his own hometown ever again!!

    Would someone kill somebody if they knew they could never show their face in their home state ever again and he would even have to be wary of living ANYWHERE in the country since Chuck's face is all over the country!!

    So, it's hard to believe Chuck would have done away with Lana KNOWING that he couldn't even show his face in a lot of places in America unless he did something drastic and had massive plastic surgery but I don't think even that can alter the basic recognizable features of your face.

    Also, WHY did Lana go ALL ALONE with Chuck on a boat in a lonely lake if she wasn't happy being with him and knew she didn't want to marry him???


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