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Thread: Mechele Linehan, 99 Years for Murder of Kent Leppink,-UPDATE Won Appeal of Conviction

  1. #326
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    Just wanted to quickly add a link to this Anchorage Daily News (adn) article that focuses on Kent, not Mechele. I just stumbled across this older article which talks more about the man he was before becoming the oft-overlooked and disparaged victim of a greedy con woman. MOO

    http://www.adn.com/2007/10/01/117389...portrayal.html

    Kent's friend described him "as someone who was often quiet, but when he did speak he was a jokester with an intelligent brand of humor."

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  3. #327
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    Quote Originally Posted by flourish View Post
    People say, "well if he was so scared why did he go up there at all?" I figure he was at the point where he just needed to know for certain that their relationship was over, instead of relying on Mechele's passive-aggressive behavior (evasiveness, etc.)
    I agree that there are various ways to interpret his decision to look for her and the cabin but, given everything else that we know of Kent, I can understand it. On the one hand, we have to wonder why, if he knew that he could be murdered (per his letter), he placed himself in a situation where the murder could be easily carried out. On the other hand, given that he was inexperienced with women, could sense that something was off and couldn't get a straight answer out of Mechele, it's understandable that he wanted to see with his own eyes what was truly going on.

    Mechele and John set a trap for him, he saw it, and still he walked straight into it. Although jurors said that this was obvious during the trial, I do wonder if another jury will see it as clearly if they do not have access to the letter, and are not allowed to know about John Carlin's conviction. Carlin's trial included a lot of information about Mechele, and vice versa. Do you know how much information about John can be included in a re-trial of Mechele? Although his conviction can't be mentioned, can all the other information about the gun and the big picture be introduced at trial?

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  5. #328
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    What on earth do you think Kent learned or how did he learn it, that one or all of them wished to do him harm? Have we ever known this and I've forgotten?

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  7. #329
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    Quote Originally Posted by flourish View Post
    Just wanted to quickly add a link to this Anchorage Daily News (adn) article that focuses on Kent, not Mechele. I just stumbled across this older article which talks more about the man he was before becoming the oft-overlooked and disparaged victim of a greedy con woman. MOO

    http://www.adn.com/2007/10/01/117389...portrayal.html
    Thanks for the article. I have to wonder if Mechele had taken the time to get to know Kent ... whether she knew that he came from money. I think a second trial should do more to establish what kind of person Kent was, as the first trial half painted him as a homosexual, obsessive loner with no social skills and pretty much no personality.

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  9. #330
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    Quote Originally Posted by darnudes View Post
    What on earth do you think Kent learned or how did he learn it, that one or all of them wished to do him harm? Have we ever known this and I've forgotten?
    I think conversations with his father, and other family (maybe) made it clear to him that no one gives a life insurance policy as a wedding present. Mechele apparently claimed that the policy was a gift from her grandfather. I suspect that is when Kent transferred the beneficiary to his parents. That may have been the beginning of suspicions, or maybe Mechele was becoming more secretive ... hard to say. I wonder if there is more in his letter to his parents about what initially made him suspcious.

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  11. #331
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    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    What a great story! Black widow in action.

    I think the defence hoped that the squeaky clean husband would gloss over the wife, but I don't think anything can make Mechele clean.

    I like the judge's comments about there being two Mechele's.

    I actually feel a little sorry for Carlin. His wife died of cancer, and he was really vulnerable. Along comes a young, gold digging, nude dancer, and his life takes a very bad turn.

    I feel sorry for her husband. He's a bit of a homely guy, but he's a doctor ... someone that could never believe that he was targeted by someone like a black widow. He is a bright guy, but even bright guys can be swindled.

    Did Mechele or her husband write her statement to the Judge after the trial? She seems to trip over the words a little too much for someone that had the words flow from her heart.

    Is that Mechele's mom sitting behind her in the courtroom?

    What a truly tragic event for Kent Leppink. He strikes me as so many guys ... shy, afraid of women, unsure if he'll be accepted, tripping over himself trying to make her happy. Mechele's email to her mother says it all ... for her, it was a big joke to take advantage of him, to torture him, to ultimately arrange for his murder, and to eventually - as her friend said - change her life to cover her tracks. She saw Kent as the ultimate lottery payoff ... one million in life insurance. I would have loved to have seen the expression on her face when she learned that he had changed the beneficiary a week before her plan was executed.

    I have to wonder if her husband will ever look at the evidence objectively; whether he will ever ask himself why she wrote the Hope note, why she participated in luring Kent to Hope, whether he will ever ask himself why she bought an insurance policy for Kent shortly before he was murdered (claiming it was a wedding gift from her grandfather), whether he will ever protect his daughter from the black widow he married.

    Have you ever read any of the things that Carlin's late wife's children have to say about him and what they supposedly believe he did to their mother? I'm not sure if we can repeat things read at online newspaper comment sections or not, but he didn't seem to be a very good guy at all and very capable of a murder plot either alone or in cahoots with another. I feel sorry for her husband. He's a cute guy, and would look much better without all the stress he was under.

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  13. #332
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    Quote Originally Posted by txsvicki View Post
    Have you ever read any of the things that Carlin's late wife's children have to say about him and what they supposedly believe he did to their mother? I'm not sure if we can repeat things read at online newspaper comment sections or not, but he didn't seem to be a very good guy at all and very capable of a murder plot either alone or in cahoots with another. I feel sorry for her husband. He's a cute guy, and would look much better without all the stress he was under.
    I haven't, but I would like to. I understand that his wife died of cancer, and that he was living off a legal settlement. I have no problem believing that he saw Kent's insurance policy as his next source of income, even if he shared it with Mechele. I hope police looked at the money trail for the purchase of the insurance policy (initial cost was between $2-3000). If John paid anything into it, it would show a joint plan. During John's last interview with Dateline, it seemed like he was going to break and tell the story bit by bit, and I suspect he would have spilled it all if Mechele got off.

    Those last remarks he made about throwing the gun in the dumpster and burying it in the yard make me think the gun isn't too far from the house. I think that was John starting to drop clues, and starting to point fingers at Mechele.

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  15. #333
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    I just stumbled upon this thread last night. It will take me awhile to read through all the posts. I saw this case on 48 Hours. I have been really intrigued ever since. I think Mechele is one of the scariest sociopaths I have ever seen. The fact that she was able to highly manipulate so many men (including her Dr. husband) is testament to what a dangerous individual she really is. IMOO
    Last edited by Nancy2441; 01-10-2011 at 11:57 PM.

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  17. #334
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy2441 View Post
    I just stumbled upon this thread last night. It will take me awhile to read through all the posts. I saw this case on 48 Hours. I have been really intrigued ever since. I think Mechele is one of the scariest sociopaths I have ever seen. The fact that she was able to highly manipulate so many men (including her Dr. husband) is testament to what a dangerous individual she really is. IMOO
    I too view Mechele as a very dangerous woman, a woman with an oblivious husband ... one that is in a great deal of denial regarding his wife. I think on a rational, logical level the husband has to know, but on a personal, emotional level he is so sucked into the clutches of the black widow that he cannot see clearly. I have wondered if the good doctor would have been a casualty after Mechele got her business off the ground ... I suspect he would have had an unexpected, suspicious, premature death within about 2 years of her financial success.

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    Quote Originally Posted by darnudes View Post
    Thanks for all the updates Flourish!

    I would love to see those files, do you think we will?
    You are welcome. I have to take breaks from thinking about this case, though, which is why I'm sporadic and random sometimes

    I highly doubt we'll get to see much of anything in this case as far as motions, etc. I don't know what the laws are in Alaska for the release of things regarding open cases.

    While the mechelinehan.com page has a section for trial documents, it's unclear whether the intention is, or was, to release trial documents from the original trial or from the retrial. So far, it seems like neither is going to happen. It's been "coming soon" for a while past soon now.

    It baffles me why they would post the state's motion for the release of her prison files, then never post the defense's response, nor the judge's decision. And the Anchorage Daily News just continues to be...well, weak. Someone once pointed out that Megan Holland, the reporter that covers this case, could/should take advantage of the opportunity to move up in the journalism world because it's her articles that are re-quoted elsewhere/AP.

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  20. #336
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    My comments in green


    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    I agree that there are various ways to interpret his decision to look for her and the cabin but, given everything else that we know of Kent, I can understand it. On the one hand, we have to wonder why, if he knew that he could be murdered (per his letter), he placed himself in a situation where the murder could be easily carried out. On the other hand, given that he was inexperienced with women, could sense that something was off and couldn't get a straight answer out of Mechele, it's understandable that he wanted to see with his own eyes what was truly going on.

    RBBM I can understand why he would go out to Hope not only once, but twice. As you said, he didn't have a lot of experience with women. Here he is, he is getting these seriously mixed messages from Mechele (emails stating how much she wanted a life with him vs. disappearing act(s) and blowing off the visit with his dad). Think of all the battered women--and men--who return over and over to their abuser, in the hopes that they will be able to work it out. Essentially, Mechele's treatment of Kent was at best emotionally and mentally abusive. At worst it was murderous.


    Mechele and John set a trap for him, he saw it, and still he walked straight into it. Although jurors said that this was obvious during the trial, I do wonder if another jury will see it as clearly if they do not have access to the letter, and are not allowed to know about John Carlin's conviction. Carlin's trial included a lot of information about Mechele, and vice versa. Do you know how much information about John can be included in a re-trial of Mechele? Although his conviction can't be mentioned, can all the other information about the gun and the big picture be introduced at trial?


    RBBM Good question that I do not know the answer to. I wonder, too, if Kent's parents can testify regarding the letter or if all mentions of the letter are off limits. I understand the argument that she can't face her accuser, but one would think that there would be exceptions in cases where the accuser can't be faced because the defendant killed them...it's like a Catch-22 almost.


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  21. #337
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    Quote Originally Posted by darnudes View Post
    What on earth do you think Kent learned or how did he learn it, that one or all of them wished to do him harm? Have we ever known this and I've forgotten?
    I don't think we've known this. I've wondered about if he saw something on someone's computer or fax machine. Perhaps there were awkward pauses/looks/stopping-of-conversation-upon-his-entering-a-room amongst them all and he realized he wasn't in on something and went from there. Maybe he just realized that Mechele was becoming more distant as his bank account dwindled and/or he had an epiphany about the life insurance policy.

    IIRC, it's been alleged that Kent tried to gain information from a nearby mental health facility that Mechele was allegedly getting counseling from and John IV had allegedly spent a short stint as an in-patient for depression and/or anxiety (?) If all that is true, then that paints Kent as perhaps overly suspicious/paranoid.

    Of course, it's only paranoia when people aren't out to kill you

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  23. #338
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    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    Thanks for the article. I have to wonder if Mechele had taken the time to get to know Kent ... whether she knew that he came from money. I think a second trial should do more to establish what kind of person Kent was, as the first trial half painted him as a homosexual, obsessive loner with no social skills and pretty much no personality.
    You are welcome.

    I doubt she did take the time to get to know him. IMHO, she was/is basically a con-woman and Kent was a mark. In an email from Carlin to Mechele, Carlin refers to a previous conversation/email where Mechele told Carlin that he (Carlin) was a "mark she got close to." I'm pretty sure it's safe to assume she uttered that same line to Kent. and Scott. and Barrow guy.

    I assume that the new prosecutor is working hard to strengthen the case and solidify some things, while emphasizing others. I agree that part of that should include a determined effort to "humanize" Kent more than in the previous trial. And that idea that he was gay but completely obsessed with Mechele at the same time is so ludicrous and, if brought up, needs to be seriously questioned.

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  25. #339
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    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    I think conversations with his father, and other family (maybe) made it clear to him that no one gives a life insurance policy as a wedding present. Mechele apparently claimed that the policy was a gift from her grandfather. I suspect that is when Kent transferred the beneficiary to his parents. That may have been the beginning of suspicions, or maybe Mechele was becoming more secretive ... hard to say. I wonder if there is more in his letter to his parents about what initially made him suspcious.
    To my knowledge, the entire letter has never been released, and I, too wonder about what's in the rest of it. I agree that his father telling him that no one gives a life insurance policy as a wedding gift likely played a big part in his realizations.

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  27. #340
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    Quote Originally Posted by txsvicki View Post
    Have you ever read any of the things that Carlin's late wife's children have to say about him and what they supposedly believe he did to their mother? I'm not sure if we can repeat things read at online newspaper comment sections or not, but he didn't seem to be a very good guy at all and very capable of a murder plot either alone or in cahoots with another. I feel sorry for her husband. He's a cute guy, and would look much better without all the stress he was under.
    Dang it, don't you hate it when you have a post all typed out and then you hit "submit" and a server somewhere goes down so you lose your post?

    I have heard some of the things you refer to, but, yeah, since there's never been a court document or mainstream-media article about it, we haven't discussed it here. However, people can feel free to google and read to their heart's content

    I feel bad for Mr. Linehan, although, obviously, since I think she's guilty, I have to wonder about his...apparent ability to continue to stick by her all this time, particularly after the affairs were out in the open public. It speaks positively about his character that he has the capacity to continue to be so generous, loyal, forgiving, patient, and unendingly supportive. However, one has to wonder about his self-esteem and denial, etc.

    I worry the most about their daughter. I imagine that her ideas about authority and the justice system have to be seriously effected by all that has happened. I hope that she is provided with any appropriate mental health services that she needs now or in the future. I don't have any doubt that Mr. Linehan will do whatever is in his power to help his daughter cope.

    Okay, this time, I'm copying my post before hitting "submit!"

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  29. #341
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    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    I haven't, but I would like to. I understand that his wife died of cancer, and that he was living off a legal settlement. I have no problem believing that he saw Kent's insurance policy as his next source of income, even if he shared it with Mechele. I hope police looked at the money trail for the purchase of the insurance policy (initial cost was between $2-3000). If John paid anything into it, it would show a joint plan. During John's last interview with Dateline, it seemed like he was going to break and tell the story bit by bit, and I suspect he would have spilled it all if Mechele got off.

    Those last remarks he made about throwing the gun in the dumpster and burying it in the yard make me think the gun isn't too far from the house. I think that was John starting to drop clues, and starting to point fingers at Mechele.
    IIRC, Mechele paid the initial cost and/or payments by check with her and Kent's joint checking account. I wonder why her "grandpa giving the gift" didn't send a check to the insurance company himself?

    Yes, in one of John's interviews, he says something like, "you got the right plan, but the wrong guy," indicating that Mechele had gotten someone to kill Kent, but it wasn't John.

    While there has been some speculation that John III was covering for John IV, citing John IV as the shooter. I have no idea if there is anything to back that up at all. Mechele's supporters go on and on about shoe sizes, so I wonder the shoe sizes of all the parties we know about, male and female, and any other men Mechele may have been...with. You never know...

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  31. #342
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy2441 View Post
    I just stumbled upon this thread last night. It will take me awhile to read through all the posts. I saw this case on 48 Hours. I have been really intrigued ever since. I think Mechele is one of the scariest sociopaths I have ever seen. The fact that she was able to highly manipulate so many men (including her Dr. husband) is testament to what a dangerous individual she really is. IMOO


    Agreed. She's certainly an "unusual person."

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  33. #343
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    Quote Originally Posted by otto View Post
    I too view Mechele as a very dangerous woman, a woman with an oblivious husband ... one that is in a great deal of denial regarding his wife. I think on a rational, logical level the husband has to know, but on a personal, emotional level he is so sucked into the clutches of the black widow that he cannot see clearly. I have wondered if the good doctor would have been a casualty after Mechele got her business off the ground ... I suspect he would have had an unexpected, suspicious, premature death within about 2 years of her financial success.
    RBBM Very well put, otto.

    It had never occurred to me that Mr. Linehan might have ultimately perished unnaturally. Actually, I think she would have continued to live as they had been, and she would have affairs that he would either not know about, choose not to know about, and/or forgive her for. He's the "medical" component to the business, if I recall and understand correctly, so she still needed him around, IMO. And who knows--perhaps she not really a sociopath and actually loves him.


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    Flourish, thanks for all the information on this case.

    What was the business she was starting??

    I think there's a good possibility she was also sleeping with John IV. I always wondered what his true motives were for testifying against dad and MEchele.

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  36. #345
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy2441 View Post
    Flourish, thanks for all the information on this case.

    What was the business she was starting??

    I think there's a good possibility she was also sleeping with John IV. I always wondered what his true motives were for testifying against dad and MEchele.
    You are welcome

    Regarding the business, it's not a surprise to me that it is one that would attract wealthy clientele:

    [Mechele's friend] described her friend as a stay-at-home mom with a young child who just entered elementary school and who, with her husband, bought a $400,000 office space in the spring to set up a medical day spa that was going to offer Botox, laser hair removal, facials and massages.
    from: http://www.adn.com/2006/10/05/224810...or-murder.html

    I shudder to think of how John IV could have been affected by it all, then and now. It's been said that Mechele took upon a sort of mother-like approach to John IV, but considering that they were closer in age to each other than she was to at least 3 of her boyfriends, I don't think it's over-reaching to wonder about their relationship.

    Here's a link to an article which discusses his testimony:

    http://www.adn.com/2007/10/02/117382...nehan-saw.html

    quote from above link:

    In a moment many in the crowded courtroom missed, the young man, who was a teenager when Leppink was killed, flashed a quick wink to Linehan at the defense table.

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  38. #346
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    Oh yeah, and I keep forgetting to tell ya'll that I asked one of our verified lawyers about having the same judge sit for a retrial of an overturned case. Our lawyer replied (my interpretation of the reply) that it depends on the situation and state and what-not, and not unheard-of, but not entirely common or best practice.

    I do wonder why this isn't going to be heard before a different judge if only to avoid an appeal issue or some other issue during and after the retrial.

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  40. #347
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    Looks like the judge set a new date for the retrial Hope this one sticks!

    Scheduled Trial Week 04/09/2012
    http://www.courtrecords.alaska.gov/p...t_lst?54330965

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  42. #348
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    Quote Originally Posted by flourish View Post
    Looks like the judge set a new date for the retrial Hope this one sticks!



    http://www.courtrecords.alaska.gov/p...t_lst?54330965
    Whoooooaaahhhhh nowww...I just noticed that it says "2012" on there.


    I copied and pasted that from the courtview and, yep, just double checked and it still says that...I'm assuming that's a typo and it's 2011...LOL

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    Quote Originally Posted by flourish View Post


    RBBM I can understand why he would go out to Hope not only once, but twice. As you said, he didn't have a lot of experience with women. Here he is, he is getting these seriously mixed messages from Mechele (emails stating how much she wanted a life with him vs. disappearing act(s) and blowing off the visit with his dad). Think of all the battered women--and men--who return over and over to their abuser, in the hopes that they will be able to work it out. Essentially, Mechele's treatment of Kent was at best emotionally and mentally abusive. At worst it was murderous.

    RBBM Good question that I do not know the answer to. I wonder, too, if Kent's parents can testify regarding the letter or if all mentions of the letter are off limits. I understand the argument that she can't face her accuser, but one would think that there would be exceptions in cases where the accuser can't be faced because the defendant killed them...it's like a Catch-22 almost.
    I completely understand why Kent went there ... and I concur that Mechele is, and was, psychologically abusive. I have to wonder if her husband wore that sad puppy countenance and demeanor before she was arrested ... like the way he hugged her, while she seemed more interested in her lawyer's arm ... was that just the circumstances, or was he always so vulnerable around her? Women that are psychologically abusive to men turn them into sad puppies. I hope he's gotten better while his wife has been in prison, but she may still have her clutches into him. I wonder who she is seeing when he's working. Mechele's track record speaks for itself ... she's not going to be without a man while her husband is away, working hard to pay for her defense and visits with her daughter.

    The letter would unfortunately turn into hearsay ... third party testimony or information ... something that cannot be subjected to cross examination, and therefore not admissible. If Mechele could be pushed into needing to mention the letter ... then it will be entered. The letter offers support of her defense that he was obsessed with her. Without the letter, can she really say that he was obsessed? John Carlin is dead, the son has moved away and who knows what he will say, and the other boyfriend thinks Mechele is a snake who stole sentimental gifts from him.

    Without the "he was obsessed" argument, the conviction of Carlin, and without the letter from Kent predicting his own murder, I have to wonder how strong the case is. The insurance policy is in, so that means the marriage discussion is in since the policy was supposedly a wedding gift from her grandfather. Kent's parents could testify, but I understand his father is not in great health. The Hope letter is in. The gun is in ... but no one knows for sure where it is buried or hidden because Carlin was the only person that knew where it was ... and he's dead.

    Hope note, luring, gun, insurance, a dead accomplice, a fourth party that has distanced himself, a teenager that has since grown up. Since the son can testify what happened with the gun and bleach - Mechele and John, and John Carlin's testimony cannot be introduced ... or can it ... I think that Mechele has a very uphill battle to get out from under this conviction.

    We've got the teenager testifying that Mechele and his father were cleaning a gun. Mechele bought Kent a life insurance policy a couple of weeks before he was murdered. Kent removed her from the policy shortly before he was murdered. The Hope note can be identified as luring Kent to Hope. We know he showered her with gifts, and that in return she falsified information that she was making upgrades to a cabin that she bought near Hope. She skipped out on a weekend with Kent's father, and then vanished ... leaving a note indicating that John Carlin knew where she was. That means John can be placed as the shooter even though his conviction was wiped out by death, since it's possible that Kent convinced John to take him to Hope to find the cabin. There only has to be a connection between John and Mechele, and with the son's testimony about the gun - her goose is cooked.

    That's what I think ... rambling on and on ...

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  46. #350
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    Quote Originally Posted by flourish View Post
    You are welcome.

    I doubt she did take the time to get to know him. IMHO, she was/is basically a con-woman and Kent was a mark. In an email from Carlin to Mechele, Carlin refers to a previous conversation/email where Mechele told Carlin that he (Carlin) was a "mark she got close to." I'm pretty sure it's safe to assume she uttered that same line to Kent. and Scott. and Barrow guy.

    I assume that the new prosecutor is working hard to strengthen the case and solidify some things, while emphasizing others. I agree that part of that should include a determined effort to "humanize" Kent more than in the previous trial. And that idea that he was gay but completely obsessed with Mechele at the same time is so ludicrous and, if brought up, needs to be seriously questioned.
    Yes, Kent needs to be interpreted by others in a re-trial (maybe a neice or nephew, a friend from home) ... the only voice Kent had was through Carlin, Mechele, his parents, and the fact that he stole money when he worked at the family store chain. The theft was resolved within the family, and outside of that he liked women, liked the casinos, enjoyed a comfortable bachelor life.

    Maybe even the third boyfriend, the one that got away, has something good to say about Kent - although he has to mention the strange relationship between him, Mechele, and the two other men that thought they would marry her ... while he too thought he was engaged to Mechele. He shared her bed, so he figured his engagement was real. Mechele shared a murder plot with Carlin, so he thought their marriage was real. Kent had introduced Mechele to his parents, so he thought family was real. I don't think the guy that was in bed with her can claim some kind of privilege, or that his relationship with Mechele counted more than the guy that was set to get some part of the million dollar life insurance and run off to an Island that didn't have extradition. I suspect they both thought their marriage proposal was real, as did Kent. Mechele found their weaknesses, and exploited them. One fiance wanted sex, the other wanted money, and the third wanted a family ... she played it all. I wonder what her husband needed that she exploited. All of the above?

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