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  1. #31
    That is one of the many reasons that this case has hit me so hard....

    I have a dog who spends a lot of time with me....I used to go to dog parks, every day as a matter of fact, but had some bad experiences, though nothing dangerous....still enough to make me aware that not every dog owner is a kind or nice person...
    also ran into several injuries caused by not-so-nice dogs....

    BUT I can see that if I were a lot younger, I might not see things this way...
    clearly, there were many who were taken in by Hilton/ Dandy...
    the Bryants, as far as I know were not dog owners....so they likely did not know that owning a dog does not ipso facto make a person a trustworthy one....

  2. #32
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    Sheriff David Mahoney said investigators have established a positive link between the murder of Irene Bryant, the disappearance of her husband and Gary Michael Hilton. At a press conference today, Mahoney said because of the complexity of the investigation that he couldn’t discuss details and that he said, “details regarding the timing or venue of criminal charges will not be released at this time.” (more at link)

    http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pb...EWS01/80116072

  3. #33
    Interesting article, thank you SuziQ for placing that here for us to read.

    I wonder what the piece of evidence is that ties Hilton to them? It looks like LE will take their time here before letting more info out of the bag. I wish they would have been able to speak with/ have Hilton give them a location for Mr Bryant's body..so their family could have a service and some closure.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeltaDawn View Post
    I wonder what the piece of evidence is that ties Hilton to them?
    I recall that Hilton dumped several garbage bags while that 911 caller had him in sight. I would suppose that there were things in those bags that Hilton knew would convict him... Something like Mr. Bryant's yellow jacket? (or at least the same yellow jacket that is in the Ducktown ATM pictures)

    Also, how many fleeces do you think Meredith had with her when she was hiking? One for sure, possibly two - but three? He was found with three blood covered fleeces... I wonder if any of those belonged to the Bryant's?

  5. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Tallytowngirl View Post
    Also, how many fleeces do you think Meredith had with her when she was hiking? One for sure, possibly two - but three? He was found with three blood covered fleeces... I wonder if any of those belonged to the Bryant's?
    Just to clarify here, the police stated that "three blood-soaked fleece tops" were found in the dumpster in Cummins a few hours earlier.

    The warrant for searching the van mentions a purple zip-up fleece.

    Most hikers will wear a wicking base layer plus a warm fleece layer. They may also carry a second fleece or shell layer to put on anytime they stop moving and get chilled. My guess is she wore two, maybe had the 3rd tied around her waist.

    Re: the purple one...who knows? Agreed that for Meredith to have had FOUR fleeces with her would have been odd.

  6. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Pure Maple Syrup View Post
    Just to clarify here, the police stated that "three blood-soaked fleece tops" were found in the dumpster in Cummins a few hours earlier.
    Also, immediately upon finding these, police stated that they did not believe Meredith was still alive. They were apparently soaked in so much fresh, wet blood that police concluded that no one wearing those could have lost that much blood and still be alive. There may also have been other, er...stuff on them, like brain matter or bone fragments that indicated that the former wearer was deceased.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pure Maple Syrup View Post
    Just to clarify here, the police stated that "three blood-soaked fleece tops" were found in the dumpster in Cummins a few hours earlier.
    My bad - I've read so much, I forget half of it! I just remembered thinking "three fleeces? how odd..." and forgot they were in the dumpster, not the van.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pure Maple Syrup View Post
    The warrant for searching the van mentions a purple zip-up fleece.
    hmm... sounds like somebody (witnesses, boyfriend?) knew Meredith was wearing a purple zip up fleece, since they were looking specifically for that in connection with her. Not to belabor the point - the warrant didn't mention several fleeces, right? just the one?

    I've done a bit of hiking in the cold myself (even if I'm from Tallahassee), and certainly will wear one fleece and a windbreaker, and possibly carry a second fleece along... I haven't personally carried two with me and worn a third. So I just thought that 3 would be more than she'd have had with her (but I can see she might have taken second extra along, since it was snowy, so you're right - guess I've been in the far south too long. We don't have snow down here)

    My thinking was - Hilton, being homeless, might have wanted to keep things like warm fleeces - like ones he'd taken from say, the Bryants. But maybe he was really dumb and kept the Bryant's ATM card or something really incriminating. We can only hope...

    The blood probably was Meredith's... sounds like he killed her in the van, and if his van was as junked up as witnesses have said, her blood probably got on all of the stuff inside it.

    I wonder about the purse? I'm looking forward to hearing more when our LE gets back in town - see if it was Cheryl's purse they found in the dumpster. Of course, they've been so closed mouth about the whole thing, I wonder if they'll tell us.

  8. #38
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    Don't forget Meredith was a runner who had regularly run this trail with her friends. Runners don't wear 3 fleeces. Not even in the snow belt. The clothing used in running translates to hiking, particularly on hilly trails and with a young energetic dog. At one year Ella is still considered a puppy.

  9. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by Tallytowngirl View Post
    The blood probably was Meredith's... sounds like he killed her in the van, and if his van was as junked up as witnesses have said, her blood probably got on all of the stuff inside it.
    I've thought a lot about that. It just doens't make any sense. Why decapitate her inside the van and get blood and gore all over it and all the stuff inside it. Now everything's bloody and contaminated with her DNA. Much easier and cleaner to drag/march/carry her a few hundred yards into the woods and do it there.

    And why take her dripping-with-blood clothes off AFTER death and take them with you? Where her blood and DNA will get all over everything? Just leave them there with the body...

  10. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Tallytowngirl View Post
    I've done a bit of hiking in the cold myself (even if I'm from Tallahassee), and certainly will wear one fleece and a windbreaker, and possibly carry a second fleece along... I haven't personally carried two with me and worn a third. So I just thought that 3 would be more than she'd have had with her
    We also gotta remember that he held her captive for three days in the van in winter. Early on, he might have lost or thrown away the purple fleece that she had been carrying/wearing that day, that's why the warrant mentioned it. But in the days that followed, she must have been cold lying in that van so, to keep her alive, Hilton dressed her in other victim's fleeces that he had lying around the van.

    Note that it was never reported that the clothing found in the dumpster WAS Merediths, only that it was "consistent with what she was thought to have been wearing".


  11. #41
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    I wonder if he rifled through her car before moving her from area. She may have brought extra fleeces to change to after a strenuous sweaty hike. We know he had a comfort level with stealing. He had her ATM card and I find it hard to believe she was hiking on a trail with that. Probably grabbed things of value quickly and didn't realize he lost his baton .

  12. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by panglossian View Post
    I wonder if he rifled through her car before moving her from area. She may have brought extra fleeces to change to after a strenuous sweaty hike. We know he had a comfort level with stealing. He had her ATM card and I find it hard to believe she was hiking on a trail with that. Probably grabbed things of value quickly and didn't realize he lost his baton .
    I am a very experienced backpacker and dayhiker and have hiked the AT in this area extensively. I would NEVER leave my wallet in my car at a trailhead. NEVER. I don't know anyone else who would either. Break-ins happen all the time at trailheads, hikers are very aware of this.

    Now, if I were going trailrunning, er, maybe, and only if I were going to be gone a short time. But Meredith was carrying all kinds of heavy stuff, multiple water bottles, dog leash, dog treats, mittens, etc. The warrant mentions a fanny pack she might have had. So, if ya got a fanny pack, you have room to tuck your wallet in. Or at least take out your DL and credit cards and take them with you, they barely weigh a thing and are small...

  13. #43
    The peice of evidence that would link the Bryants positively would be more like DNA. A driver's license, atm card, etc could be said to be found on the street..but I think there may have been a piece of DNA transferred from Mr Bryant to the van. It will be fascinating what they found that is proof positive he alledgedly was involved with the Bryants murders.

  14. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by DeltaDawn View Post
    The peice of evidence that would link the Bryants positively would be more like DNA.
    I think they're only talking about the fact that the plate was confirmed stolen in Trans Cty. Notice the language. They're only talking about a "link between Transylvania County, GMH and the Bryants. A link, not "evidence". It's just the stolen plate, IMO.

    Possibly someone saw Hilton in a white Astro van w/NC plates near where the Bryants went missing. There is the "link". Again, they did not use the term "evidence", as they most certainly would have if they'd been referring to DNA.

    I think the NC sheriff was just being beseiged by media inquiries and felt he had to do a press conference.

  15. #45
    I think he lost the baton and his sunglasses in a struggle myself. I don't think he even realized it until later.
    "WE SEEK FOR THE TRUTH. WE SEEK JUSTICE.
    THE COURTS REQUIRE IT. THE VICTIMS CRY FOR IT
    AND GOD DEMANDS IT!"

    A quote spray painted on the wall by search
    and rescue workers, Team 5, at the OKC Bombing site 4-19-1995.



    What I post are my opinions only.

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