Still Missing FL - Isabella Hellmann, 41, catamaran off Cay Sal, SE of the FL Keys, 14 May 2017 #1

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msphilosopher

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Looking at the relationship... In the event of a break up (one leaving the other or mutual separation), I believe we could likely make the following assumptions.

1. Bennet would leave FL --- We know he has no (other) family or friends here. We know he already has commitment issues to FL. We know his family and business fairs are overseas.

2. Isabella would get full custody --- It's very hard for a mother not to get custody. This usually tips in favor of the mother unless she is severely "unfit". That's not to say Bennet wouldn't get to see his daughter, but he would have a much less role (or "control") in her life and miss many firsts.

These are only assumptions, which in my opinion are very likely assumptions <modsnip>

These are likely consequences one would consider during irreconcilable views on where to live, how to raise a kid, and financial spending habits.
 

Hiandmighty

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I don't know if mothers get full custody any more. I know a few men who have full custody and my divorced friends have 50/50. I'm not sure that is true that mothers get custody...

However, it seems since he was always off working and she had the baby, I would assume she would have been custodial parent since she already was...
 

TeaTime

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Here's another pic:

850x478


Am I correct is assuming that the big light blue patch is the underside of the middle of the catamaran meaning (to me) the part between the hulls? As in this boat has flipped over?

Terrifying.
 

LaneGirl

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I don't know if mothers get full custody any more. I know a few men who have full custody and my divorced friends have 50/50. I'm not sure that is true that mothers get custody...

However, it seems since he was always off working and she had the baby, I would assume she would have been custodial parent since she already was...


Not disputing your experiences at all but this is what I found...

One of every six custodial parents (17.5 percent) were fathers. From most recent census 2013...

ETA - Link
https://www.census.gov/newsroom/press-releases/2016/cb16-tps04.html
Canada also reports 80% of mothers get custody.

Note: this is from the latest released information but who knows what 2016 census will say, it may very well change.
 

Hiandmighty

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Am I correct is assuming that the big light blue patch is the underside of the middle of the catamaran meaning (to me) the part between the hulls? As in this boat has flipped over?

Terrifying.

That is what I see. Yes. UK articles say it sunk fast.
 

bears10

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I don't know if mothers get full custody any more. I know a few men who have full custody and my divorced friends have 50/50. I'm not sure that is true that mothers get custody...

However, it seems since he was always off working and she had the baby, I would assume she would have been custodial parent since she already was...

Well if he moved to Australia or England it'd be hard to do 50/50.
 

inmyhumbleopinion

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I assumed FBI investigated because her family filed a complaint.

-Not directed at you, Hiandmighty :); I'm just wondering ...-
What type of complaint would that be, and based on what grounds? Would a plea from an ordinary family be compelling enough for the FBI to open a joint investigation?

If the involvement of the FBI was not triggered by the USCG reaching out to them upon perhaps observing something suspicious during the rescue or Bennett making some sort of contradictory statement to them, etc., or Isabella's family filing a complaint, could it be that the investigation is the result of an insurance company turning to the FBI for assistance in investigating a possible fraudulent claim (i.e., marine insurance, life insurance, etc.)?

Bennett was rescued "at about 4:30" on May 15th.

"On May 19, FBI spokesman James P. Marshall said only that, 'We are aware of this matter and will respond accordingly.'" The Coast Guard had just suspended its search the day before, on March 18th. (BBM)

"[A neighbor] said she saw the 'official-looking' men with the latex gloves [from the FBI? USCG Investigative Service?] and Bennett out by his car at about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday [May 23rd]." (BBM)

On May 25th, "U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Lisa Novak told The Palm Beach Post that the Coast Guard and the FBI are 'jointly' working on what she called 'a missing person investigation.'"

So within four days of Bennett being rescued and Isabella disappearing, the FBI was admitting to being made aware of the incident with the Coast Guard confirming a joint investigation with them not even a week after that.

The authorities are certainly wasting no time investigating this case, IMO.

Sources and References:
"Investigating Insurance Fraud - A $30-Billion-a-Year Racket": https://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/investigating-insurance-fraud

"What happened to Isabella? Agencies probe mystery of missing woman"
http://www.mypalmbeachpost.com/news...mystery-missing-woman/5reNR5lTYpl2kcOKNxdxaP/

"NEW: FBI probing woman’s reported disappearance at sea, authorities say"
http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/c...e-sea-authorities-say/3uWJS7CTyP09oFJAd7siKJ/

"FBI Investigating Husband of Delray Beach Realtor Lost at Sea"
http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/FBI-Investigating-Man-Whose-Wife-Was-Lost-at-Sea-425791354.html

"Coast Guard Investigative Service" HP: https://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg2/cgis/
 

Jersey*Girl

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-Not directed at you, Hiandmighty :); I'm just wondering ...-
What type of complaint would that be, and based on what grounds? Would a plea from an ordinary family be compelling enough for the FBI to open a joint investigation?

If the involvement of the FBI was not triggered by the USCG reaching out to them upon perhaps observing something suspicious during the rescue or Bennett making some sort of contradictory statement to them, etc., or Isabella's family filing a complaint, could it be that the investigation is the result of an insurance company turning to the FBI for assistance in investigating a possible fraudulent claim (i.e., marine insurance, life insurance, etc.)?

Bennett was rescued "at about 4:30" on May 15th.

"On May 19, FBI spokesman James P. Marshall said only that, 'We are aware of this matter and will respond accordingly.'" The Coast Guard had just suspended its search the day before, on March 18th. (BBM)

"[A neighbor] said she saw the 'official-looking' men with the latex gloves [from the FBI? USCG Investigative Service?] and Bennett out by his car at about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday [May 23rd]." (BBM)

On May 25th, "U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman Lisa Novak told The Palm Beach Post that the Coast Guard and the FBI are 'jointly' working on what she called 'a missing person investigation.'"

So within four days of Bennett being rescued and Isabella disappearing, the FBI was admitting to being made aware of the incident with the Coast Guard confirming a joint investigation with them not even a week after that.

The authorities are certainly wasting no time investigating this case, IMO.

Sources and References:
"Investigating Insurance Fraud - A $30-Billion-a-Year Racket": https://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/investigating-insurance-fraud

"What happened to Isabella? Agencies probe mystery of missing woman"
http://www.mypalmbeachpost.com/news...mystery-missing-woman/5reNR5lTYpl2kcOKNxdxaP/

"NEW: FBI probing woman’s reported disappearance at sea, authorities say"
http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/c...e-sea-authorities-say/3uWJS7CTyP09oFJAd7siKJ/

"FBI Investigating Husband of Delray Beach Realtor Lost at Sea"
http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/FBI-Investigating-Man-Whose-Wife-Was-Lost-at-Sea-425791354.html

"Coast Guard Investigative Service" HP: https://www.uscg.mil/hq/cg2/cgis/

I could swear I read a couple days ago that it was actually the USCG that contacted the FBI syaing that something just didn't seem right and appeared suspicious. Gimme a few and I'll look for it.
 

TeaTime

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I am not surprised that the FBI is investigating this missing US citizen case as there is no one else with authority to do so. Not in FL waters, so FL has no authority over the case.

No one is just going to take the husband's word for what happened, they will investigate to make sure that there is nothing amiss.
 

Jersey*Girl

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Something confuses me...

Did they have more than one sat phone? Lewis went down to sleep at 8:00pm. Isabella called her sister at 8:30pm using a sat phone. Lewis called USCG at 1:00am using a sat phone. Was it the only sat phone? If so, that'd mean that it was still on deck either tethered or just lucky enough to have survived a fall overboard.

Also, it's VERY weird that Isabella wasn't home on the 12th like she said she'd be, considering her sister that she's close with was graduating. Its EVEN MORE weird that Isabella didn't inquire about or speak with her daughter considering Sunday was Mother's Day - her very first Mother's Day.

While there isn't enough info to judge if there was a wrong-doing or not, and considering many many people have opinions on Isabella's disappearance, I would myself consider what her family is saying. Lewis does deserve the benefit of the doubt, and families do speak out of emotion, <modsnip>

Greater Than, I'm sorry I'm just now seeing this, catching up. Here's the link...

http://www.express.co.uk/news/world/810719/isabella-hellman-missing-fbi-florida-lewis-bennett

FBI probe disappearance of British man&#8217;s wife after she vanishes from yacht
The FBI is investigating the disappearance of a British man&#8217;s wife who vanished during their honeymoon as they sailed to Florida.
By DANIEL BATES
PUBLISHED: 18:20, Mon, May 29, 2017 | UPDATED: 18:33, Mon, May 29, 201

The couple met in 2014 and have travelled extensively together.

By a Facebook photo of a trip to her home city of Bogota, Mr Bennett wrote: &#8220;Isabella&#8217;s old man is an ex-police chief, which is nice!&#8221;

Mr Bennett did not respond to messages asking for comment.

Neighbours in Delray Beach said Ms Hellman was a wonderful mother.

Anne Fennimore said: &#8220;I&#8217;m shocked. It&#8217;s terrible. She was a very nice person. She talked to a lot of people around here so to know that somebody in your community has vanished, it&#8217;s scary.&#8221;

Miss Hellman&#8217;s boss Ben Schachter at Signature International Real Estate said: &#8220;She was optimistic about life and that&#8217;s why this just doesn&#8217;t make any sense.&#8221; The FBI would not comment on the investigation.
 

Satchie

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I am not surprised that the FBI is investigating this missing US citizen case as there is no one else with authority to do so. Not in FL waters, so FL has no authority over the case.

No one is just going to take the husband's word for what happened, they will investigate to make sure that there is nothing amiss.
I agree, the husband has no explanation for how/why/when his wife went overboard and there are no other witnesses. There has to be an investigation, can't just accept "she disappeared", and put that on a death certificate. For eg, what if she were faking her death for some reason.

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kbissing

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Am I correct is assuming that the big light blue patch is the underside of the middle of the catamaran meaning (to me) the part between the hulls? As in this boat has flipped over?

Terrifying.

Why is bright and sunny out? I thought he was rescued at 5:30 am? He called at 1 am from the life raft.


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TeaTime

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Why is bright and sunny out? I thought he was rescued at 5:30 am? He called at 1 am from the life raft.


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Those photos are from the search mission that went on for days, not the rescue itself.
 

Bently

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This case was on Primetime Justice with Ashleigh Banfield on HLN again last night. Here's the link to the transcript:

http://www.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1706/07/ptab.01.html

from above...keeping within 10% copyright rules so there is a little more than this....

"
Karen Curtis is the news director for WFTL, and she joins me from West Palm Beach, Florida. I am not overstating this, Karen, when I say that the most

important piece of evidence perhaps in this entire missing person presumed dead case would be the boat. So how on earth do we not know where it is?

KAREN CURTIS, WFTL (via telephone): Very good question. It`s a huge mystery. The Coast Guard and the FBI tonight will not say and will not

give any information on who has possession of this boat, the Surf Into Summer, the 37-foot catamaran. You have pictures of it there. The Coast

Guard won`t even say if it was closely inspected, which is unusual.

But again, this is a missing person investigation, and we`re told that Lewis Bennett may not even be a target of an investigation. And there may

not be any foul play, but still, the FBI searched his car in Dell Ray Beach (ph) and they searched his residence in Dell Ray Beach. There was crime

scene tape up there.

And there is no sign of Lewis Bennett and no sign of the 10-month-old baby. Of course, he is a dual citizen of the U.K. and Australia. So we don`t

know where he is. We don`t know where the boat is.

BANFIELD: And the weird thing is, not only is he not home at the home where they shared, neither is the baby. There is FBI crime tape across his

door, and the mail is piping up, as well. So it`s very curious.

I actually do want to read a statement the Coast Guard sent us because, you know, obviously, our first question was, What do you mean you don`t have

the boat? You got the guy. It`s pretty weird. The girl is missing. But the boat is bobbing there and probably needs a really good inspection, like

with a fine-toothed comb.

And this is what the Coast Guard said to us. "The Coast Guard cutter Charles David, Jr., crew relocated the vessel on May 17th" -- and that`s a

couple days after they did the rescue -- "conducted further inspection and attached a self-locating data marker buoy to the vessel. The buoy stopped

transmitting a few hours after it was attached."

What is all that about, Karen?

CURTIS: Well, the Coast Guard told me that they are not in the business of actually salvaging the property and recovering the boat. You know, you see

the picture there of it. But they put the marker on it. It stopped transmitting, but they told Lewis Bennett that it was his responsibility to

get the boat out of the water...

BANFIELD: OK. You had me at hello. I get it. The Coast Guard does amazing work in rescuing people, and in this case, they found Lewis in that

liferaft. But I also know that the Coast Guard has a division called the Coast Guard Investigative Service and that is actually working in

conjunction with the FBI, which makes me think you do more than rescue people, you investigate weird things, too. So you can`t have it both ways.

Why do we not know that they didn`t take this more seriously? Why did that data marker just stop transmitting a few hours later? This is important

stuff!

CURTIS: It`s very important. We don`t know. And as they said, the FBI and the Coast Guard tonight -- have no information on who has possession of

the boat. I mean, it`s possible it sank. It`s possible that someone, maybe Lewis Bennett, had it salvaged, or that the FBI has it. Who knows.


We don`t know. (INAUDIBLE) huge mystery.

BANFIELD: Real quickly, Jonna Spilbor and Danny Cevallos are with me, two defense attorneys. Jonna, I`m going to get this one to you. I would have

thought the forensic analysis of that boat would be the number one thing they would need to do. It might actually give us a clue as to whether his

story was true.

JONNA SPILBOR, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely. How hard would it have been for some agency to tow the boat out of the water where it could be properly

inspected? It`s confounding that that did not occur.

[20:25:04]BANFIELD: And now it`s presumably missing. Stay tuned on this one because the FBI isn`t talking to us, so they may very well have it and

they`re not saying,
but it is a weird, weird story."
 

Hiandmighty

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I'm thinking it sunk a few hours later and that is why the marker stopped transmitting. It capsized on the 15th and was at the mercy of the wind and waves for two additional days... it stands to reason that it kept getting broad sided by the waves and given its partially sunk condition-- my guess is mother nature finished it off.

Oh. Leaving for girls boating weekend.... didn't I read somewhere coast guard "took samples" of something? Maybe they punched out a part of the hull on the 17th and that itself caused the rest to sink?!? Not sure if that is even possible though...
 

Satchie

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from above...
JONNA SPILBOR, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Absolutely. How hard would it have been for some agency to tow the boat out of the water where it could be properly

inspected? It`s confounding that that did not occur

I think this person doesn't understand the expense/complications involved. It's not like calling a tow truck.

EDITED to add: it really bothers me that an obviously ignorant person is presented on National TV as some sort of expert, but such is life these days.

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JerseyGirl

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I think this person doesn't understand the expense/complications involved. It's not like calling a tow truck.

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Actually it is. Most boat owners belong to SeaTow or BoatUS, they are the AAA to the boating world.
 

Bently

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I think this person doesn't understand the expense/complications involved. It's not like calling a tow truck.

EDITED to add: it really bothers me that an obviously ignorant person is presented on National TV as some sort of expert, but such is life these days.

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...as happened with the radio station individual who has now been on twice. The first night she was saying that the FBI had the boat in their possession (incorrect information that she read from a two week old article that was from ANOTHER source that had someone on their article that was speculating, and she touted it as the truth and referred to the other person's source as hers) and apparently was not really familiar with the case. And, she was on again last night.

smh.....
 
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