Found Deceased AL - Paighton Houston, 29, left bar with 2 men, Birmingham, 20 Dec 2019 #2

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gitana1

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"Idk who im with so if I call please answer. I feel in trouble.”

I once texted a friend because I was worried about someone I was with. I gave a name in the event I turned up missing. If she didn't have a name by that point, there's nothing else there to work with--no suspected location, no information on who she is with, no information on why she is scared, though she takes the time to add more than as if it was sent in a hurry. She could have been impaired, but again, it's just a weird combination of very specific information with nothing concrete to act on. And as people have said, why not call?

"I feel in trouble" also seems like odd phrasing if you're scared. I think it would be more normal/natural for someone to say "I'm scared."

There's also a bit of a potential delay worked in in clarifying she would be the one to call--not the other way around, with the assumption she would still be in the position to call, not like she is afraid she will not be able to make a phone call if things got weirder/more uncomfortable.

I am not saying all of this to blame PH--it just makes me think she very well may not have sent the text message.

Hmm. I feel you on that. In context that is odd. Because she was texting the person she went with. I didn’t know that. So the person she went with should’ve already been aware of who she left with. And then the phrasing would be different. Maybe more like: “These guys are getting weird. Answer if I call. Call the police if I don’t show up.”
 

Zella

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Hmm. I feel you on that. In context that is odd. Because she was texting the person she went with. I didn’t know that. So the reason she went with should’ve already been aware of who she left with. And then the phrasing would be different. Maybe more like: “These guys are getting weird. Answer if I call. Call the police if I don’t show up.”
Exactly!
 

susiQ

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Exactly! I just looked up PH's height (5'2") and weight (123 lbs) I have a hard time digging a hole for a bush! I'm guessing it would have to have been at the very least 20-30 inches deep by 5 and a half feet long.
Not necessarily. She may have been found in the fetal position. If rigor mortis had not set in, you wouldn't need as large a hole.

"Once the contracting of all the body's muscles has taken place this state of Rigor - technically referred to as the Rigid Stage - normally lasts anything from eight to twelve hours after which time the body is completely stiff; this fixed state lasts for up to another eighteen hours."
 

Adt1984

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Good points but it could have been sent to deflect from the real person responsible for her missing if it wasn’t a stranger. Like to send the police on a hunt for 2 men that don’t exist and have the family thinking it wasn’t someone known to her. I may be reaching but I think it’s plausible.
Why would someone involved in either her death or in covering up her death (meaning they didn’t want to get caught) send a highly concerning text that would immediately alert the recipient to the situation and cause people to start looking and examining what happened?

That doesn’t make sense.

We’ve seen texts from other people using victim’s phones. They’re never like that. They’re always meant to deflect attention and alarm. Not to cause it.
 

Adt1984

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One main reason I say OD is because LE made it a point to emphasize they were not treating her case as a homicide yet. I think that’s telling. MOO.
They even used the word “emphasize” in their statement.

Yes, I suspect you're right--personally, I am not entirely sure the coworkers are involved. I don't rule it out, but I also don't think it is a given.
 

ajaylee

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I'm having trouble with this scenario, probably because we don't have enough information yet.

PH and co-worker are going to carpool to the bar to meet other co-workers and listen to music, which starts at 10:30 PM, IIRC. PH leaves her car at the co-worker's house, so it's obvious how she plans to get home from the bar.

PH checks in with her family regularly all day long, possibly as part of her on-going recovery. She tells her father about her plans for after-work entertainment.

No 'check-in' calls to her family after work or from the bar?

The friend sees her leave, or doesn't see her leave, but the friend eventually feels comfortable going home without PH. Does she leave without knowing if PH is coming back or how PH plans to get home? Does she just basically take off without knowing whether or not PH is still there? I don't see any indication that PH checked in with her friend before she disappeared. We also haven't heard a peep from the other co-workers - when they arrived, did they see PH, when did they leave? And I'm mindful that we don't know how much this friend may have had to drink and how clear her thoughts and recollections might be.
 

margarita25

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True. That’s why I almost never form a conclusion prior to an arrest. Because we don’t have a lot of the info before that so how can we be certain.

But I do judge probabilities before that and lean in various directions. And I will continue to do so based on my experience and logic because it usually pans out.

Here I’m slowly gathering info but am clearly missing what others probably have.

I just had a weird thought about this. You know how sometimes when a perp is arrested, the neighbors/co-workers will say they never expected he was capable of that, say Chris Watts for example. Well, going along with that logic, there would have to be an opposite of this, that someone may seem capable of something, but really aren’t.
 

Beth11311

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Per earlier discussion, that is not the correct address. Google is incorrect. It doesn't matter if you are just trying to determine soil properties but it would if anyone is sleuthing past residents.
It’s switched with the house across the street. Well, I think it’s across the street somewhat. It’s close to 210.
 

margarita25

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"Idk who im with so if I call please answer. I feel in trouble.”

I once texted a friend because I was worried about someone I was with. I gave a name in the event I turned up missing. If she didn't have a name by that point, there's nothing else there to work with--no suspected location, no information on who she is with, no information on why she is scared, though she takes the time to add more than as if it was sent in a hurry. She could have been impaired, but again, it's just a weird combination of very specific information with nothing concrete to act on. And as people have said, why not call?

"I feel in trouble" also seems like odd phrasing if you're scared. I think it would be more normal/natural for someone to say "I'm scared."

There's also a bit of a potential delay worked in in clarifying she would be the one to call--not the other way around, with the assumption she would still be in the position to call, not like she is afraid she will not be able to make a phone call if things got weirder/more uncomfortable.

I am not saying all of this to blame PH--it just makes me think she very well may not have sent the text message.

This is well articulated. Agreed.

Jumping off this, unless she was already perhaps majorly intoxicated from whatever she potentially ingested, so she was “fading fast” and couldn’t articulate properly.

Here’s another thought, heroin doesn’t have to be “heroin”, it could be pills, aka “legal heroin”, by which she was enticed, fwiw.
 

MassGuy

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One main reason I say OD is because LE made it a point to emphasize they were not treating her case as a homicide yet. I think that’s telling. MOO.
They even used the word “emphasize” in their statement.
The issue is that not all murders leave overt physical injuries. PH had likely been dead for close to two weeks, which means a level of decomposition.

There’s a very reasonable chance that those personnel who exhumed the body, didn’t have a clue as to what killed her.

The smart play isn’t to jump to conclusions, and to wait for the results of an autopsy.
 

ChuckInHouston

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That’s a good point. IMO it was sent to make LE investigate strangers instead of people she knew.

The only way this makes sense is if the CoWorker is involved. The only way!! I dont think we have enough info to get this far. we don't even know for sure if the info is how it was relayed to the family. Have your ever saw an exercise where one person whispers to another and by the end of the line, the message is jumbled up or altogether different.
this could happen in one relay, from one person to another, the to media. We don't even know if this is what the coworker told to LE. We only have second hand info from the family.
 

Zella

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This is well articulated. Agreed.

Jumping off this, unless she was already perhaps majorly intoxicated from whatever she potentially ingested, so she was “fading fast” and couldn’t articulate properly.

Here’s another thought, heroin doesn’t have to mean “heroin”, it could be pills, aka “legal heroin”, fwiw.
Thanks--yes, it is possible she was somehow impaired. She very well could have been roofied. :( And if that is the case, I could certainly see her sending a text message where she was afraid but not able to articulate that very well.

My background is in literature and language, and that is why I fixate so much on the phrasing. In most of the true crime cases I've followed, weird phrasing usually indicates, well, weirdness.
 

jgarris

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My gut keeps telling me that the co-worker is not involved and that she just got it wrong with the people she said she saw PH left with.

Maybe it’s because I would hope better of a “friend.” My gut tells me that this was a random crime of opportunity - maybe influenced by drugs or sexual desires. MOO.
 

Optics

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Can someone clarify for me on her 'recovering addict' history? Was her history on that aspect extensive? - like for years in the past? And moreso - how long had she been 'clean' before she disappeared?
 

margarita25

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The issue is that not all murders leave overt physical injuries. PH had likely been dead for close to two weeks, which means a level of decomposition.

There’s a very reasonable chance that those personnel who exhumed the body, didn’t have a clue as to what killed her.

The smart play isn’t to jump to conclusions, and to wait for the results of an autopsy.

Additionally, they may not have disturbed or removed the covering and kept it intact all the way to the lab, so those who exhumed her may not have seen her entire body.
 

oceanstarryeyes

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I'm having trouble with this scenario, probably because we don't have enough information yet.

PH and co-worker are going to carpool to the bar to meet other co-workers and listen to music, which starts at 10:30 PM, IIRC. PH leaves her car at the co-worker's house, so it's obvious how she plans to get home from the bar.

PH checks in with her family regularly all day long, possibly as part of her on-going recovery. She tells her father about her plans for after-work entertainment.

No 'check-in' calls to her family after work or from the bar?

The friend sees her leave, or doesn't see her leave, but the friend eventually feels comfortable going home without PH. Does she leave without knowing if PH is coming back or how PH plans to get home? Does she just basically take off without knowing whether or not PH is still there? I don't see any indication that PH checked in with her friend before she disappeared. We also haven't heard a peep from the other co-workers - when they arrived, did they see PH, when did they leave? And I'm mindful that we don't know how much this friend may have had to drink and how clear her thoughts and recollections might be.
“We also haven't heard a peep from the other co-workers”
Was she ever inside the bar?
 
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