MD - Elizabeth Metzler, 10, abducted & murdered, Anne Arundel County, 6 Dec 1971

Discussion in 'Past Trial Discussion Threads' started by Richard, Mar 12, 2007.

  1. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    Elizabeth Ann Metzler
    Abducted, molested, and murdered 6 December 1971
    Anne Arundel County, Maryland

    Below is an excerpt from a news article about this case and others from the same area.
    ------------------------------------------------
    The Capitol
    Mon, Sept. 17, 1973
    Annapolis, MD

    5 MURDERS UNSOLVED
    2 girls, 2 D.C.men, woodcutter victims.

    When the body of 10-year-old Elizabeth Ann Metzler was found buried under a pile of trash along a litter-strewn deserted lover's lane in December 1971, Anne Arundel County Police Lt. Bernnard Kiessling pledged to work fulltime on the case until the little girl's murderer was found.

    Now, nearly two years later, Kiessling is no longer putting in the seven-day-a-week schedule he kept up for six months but he is still hopeful the young girl's killer will be found.

    That case is one of five murders unsolved by the County Police, not counting one dating back to 1948.

    In addition to the Metzler case, county police still have to solve the murder of Pamela Lynn Conyers, a pretty Glen Burnie High School student who disappeared in October 1971 while returning from a shopping trip to the Harundale Mall, the murder, a week earlier of a 40-year-old woodcutter, and the gangland style execution of two Washington men.

    The Metzler girl was last seen alive by neighbors walking along a dirt driveway to her home off Quarterfield road in the Ridgeway section of the county after leaving the Ridgeway Elementary school December 6, 1971.

    After searching the rest of that day and for the next three days, her nude body was found about five miles from her house alongside an abandoned car off Harmons road.

    The little girl had been strangled to death after being viciously assaulted.

    Kiessling believes a man in his mid-forties may be the killer. A man spotted near the Metzler driveway by several persons leads police to believe their prime suspect may have brown or possibly dyed hair cut fairly short and combed forward. He may have bulging pale blue eyes and a ruddy complexion, similar to that of an outdoorsman.

    In addition, a dirty white station wagon, probably fairly old, was seen in the vicinity of the girl's home.

    Since the little girls abduction and death, police have questioned dozens of suspects and, according to Kiessling, have been within five minutes of charging two different persons with the slaying. Those cases fell apart at the last minute.

    One person confessed to the killing on three occasions to three different persons, but police, after investigating, decided he could not have committed the crime.

    Kiessling has sent investigators to seven states, checking into similar crimes and possible suspects.

    To date, nothing has panned out.

    Kiessling even recieved aid from a Virginia man who claims to have clairvoyant powers. "I don't believe in clairvoyants, but I can't completely discount them either," Kiessling said, adding that the man predicted to police that a girl with long black hair would be found murdered along Capitol Beltway. A few days later, such a girl was found dead. Police have ruled out the clairvoyant as a suspect, however.

    The liutenant has worked with the image of the Metzler girl's killer now for nearly two years and is convinced that whoever killed her has a mentally depraved mind.

    "I'm very much afraid," he said," that this person committed a crime like this before or since."

    One event which may have led Kiessling to that statement occurred just a few weeks after the Metzler murder, in Marietta Ga, where a 9-year-old girl was walking home from a laundromat disappeard and her body was found a few days later. The victim had wounds similar to those of the Metzler girl and police here believe that Elizabeth Ann's killer could easily have gone to Georgia after the Metzler slaying and committed the other crime.

    The driveway from which the little girl was abducted led at one time to a nudist colony known as Hidden Village.

    Her disappearance from that driveway was not the first such occurrance. In 1958, a 58-year-old man, William Brooks, was walking along the driveway when he was seized by two men who later killed him and stole his car.

    Both men were found, convicted and sentenced to death, but after a lengthy legal battle, their sentences were reduced to life in prison.

    Brooks lived in a one room cabin about 100 yards from the ...Metzler home. Keissling investigated that case too....

    Article continues to talk about Pamela Lynn Conyers (see separate WS thread), the woodcutter murder, 2 men gunned down, and 1948 murder.

    Link below shows a composite sketch of a suspect in the Metzler case:

    http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k235/fireangeldancer/conyers1.jpg?t=1173731814/
     
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  3. michelle

    michelle Joy comes in the Morning

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    I have never heard of this case. Thanks Richard for posting it.
     
  4. JusticeForAll

    JusticeForAll New Member

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    I knew Beth. We both attended St. Joseph's Catholic Church, in Odenton, and were in the same Catechism class together, although I went to Odenton Elementary School.

    I don't remember the exact year, I believe that it was sometime in the late 70's, an arrest was made in her murder. The killer's wife contacted police. She had found some bloody clothing in the house shortly after the murder, and was afraid to come forward at the time. After his arrest several other people came forward with information about him being drunk in a bar and rambling on incoherently about killing someone. I think his name was Vernon Chaney. I have tried looking up information on this case over the years and have found nothing.

    Beth is buried at Glen Haven Cemetery, in Glen Burnie, not far from were my parents are buried.
     
  5. JusticeForAll

    JusticeForAll New Member

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  6. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    An interesting 2003 Court decision, but a lot of leaglese to wade through. The Bottom Line was that the origional 1978 guilty verdict and life sentence (without possibility of parole) stood.

    JUDGMENT OF THE COURT OF
    SPECIAL APPEALS REVERSED;
    CASE REMANDED TO THAT
    COURT WITH DIRECTIONS TO
    AFFIRM THE JUDGMENT OF THE
    CIRCUIT COURT FOR CALVERT
    COUNTY; ALL COSTS IN THIS
    COURT AND THE COURT OF
    SPECIAL APPEALS TO BE PAID BY
    RESPONDENT.

    The death penalty was in effect in 1971 when Chaney murdered little Elizabeth, but by the time he was caught and tried (1978), the Supreme Court had declared the Death Penalty to be Unconstitutional. Everyone on Death Row at the time got their sentences commuted to Life - guys like Charlie Manson, Richard Speck, Sirhan Sirhan, and many others.

    Also, for a period of time the highest sentence that could be given was Life in prison. Such was the case for Chaney. "He Got Lucky", and so was still around to appeal his sentence in an effort to gain parole.

    Although this case is technically no longer a "Cold Case" what are the possible connections between the murder of little 10 year-old Elizabeth and other similar cases before 1971 and between 1971 and 1978 when this dirtbag was finally caught, tried, convicted, and incarcerated?

    What are this guy's vital statistics? Does he match descriptions of suspects in other cases?
     
  7. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    Name: Richard Miles Chaney
    Maryland Department of Corrections (DOC) number 17908
    Date of Birth: 19 November 1939
    Current age: 67
    Age in 1971 at time of Elizabeth's murder: 32

    Current location:
    Maryland Correctional Institute-Jessup
    Address: P.O. Box 549, Jessup, MD 20794
    Phone: 877-313-0632
     
  8. KrisNine

    KrisNine New Member

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    This hits home for me. I grew up here and this was my elementary school. I wasn't in school at the time (I was a baby), but my aunt was 14 or 15 at the time and this man approached her this very day and offered her a ride while she was walking home from her friends house. When news reports came in about Elizabeth missing, my grandparents called the police and reported what happened to my aunt. The police came to my grandparents house and interviewed my aunt. She gave a description of the man that approached her, she believes to this day that the man was Richard Chaney.
     
  9. Here4Answers

    Here4Answers New Member

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    Does anyone know if there was a strong case against Richard Chaney in the murder of Elizabeth Ann Metzler? Was the evidence overwhelming? Did he confess? Also does anyone know of any personal information on Richard Miles Chaney.Like where did he live at the time? What kind of work did he do? Where was he employed.Did he own other cars? Did he have a prior criminal record? Your help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  10. Dtect

    Dtect New Member

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    What is the story of the Woodcutter? Thanks, D
     
  11. Anubis

    Anubis New Member

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    Did they have any potential DNA that can (or was) tested?
     
  12. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    Bumping Thread up. Does anyone see any possible links between the convicted killer of this little girl and other cases of the early 1970's?
     
  13. abyss

    abyss New Member

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    I knew Elizabeth as well. I was in the first grade at Ridgeway Elementary ...I assume she was in the 5th or 6th. She was always very sweet to me. I remember my mom and a friend of hers talking about an article in the paper and I noticed her picture. At that age I had no idea why her picture would be in the paper. I guess mom must have explained to me why she was in a way that my young mind could grasp what had happened. I vividly remember hearing them discuss the case in a conversation I was not supposed to hear.
    That has haunted me all these years. I dont know why, but today (39 years later) I felt compelled to search her name on the internet.
    I was very glad to see that someone was finally arrested for the crime. Do you know if the guy (Chaney) is still alive? Anyway, reading the information on this post has brought a little piece of mind to something that has been bothering me for decades.
     
  14. JusticeForAll

    JusticeForAll New Member

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  15. DaveG

    DaveG New Member

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    I remember this case...I was only 10 and I lived nearby in Severna Park. Her disappearance scared the heck out of me and then we moved away a few years later. I never heard about the arrest and for some reason I thought of her last night. Over the years I would occasionally remember her name but I probably hadn't thought of her in 10 years...I'd never searched her name on google, I know that. Anyway, she was the first case of its kind that I'd ever heard of and I've never forgotten. Thanks for sharing your memories and bringing me up to date with such an awful and sad case.

    Dave
     
  16. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    Dave, Welcome to Websleuths. Thanks for your post. Interesting how sometimes we think of people from the past and then reconnect in some way.

    So many of these cases could be related. This one took seven years to solve. One wonders how many other children disappeared or were murdered by this guy in the intervening years.
     
  17. tk71texas

    tk71texas wth is wrong with people today

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    such a sad story.....and I was born 10 days later. :angel:
     
  18. mistagee

    mistagee New Member

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    The Lyon case has been very strong in my conscience this week. This case could very well be connected to the sister's abduction
     
  19. Richard

    Richard New Member

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    6 December will mark the 39th anniversary of the murder of little Elizabeth Ann Metzler. The case remains unsolved.
     
  20. blueyespw

    blueyespw New Member

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    I was in Elizabeth's grade at Ridgeway. She was the nicest girl. I was extremely shy and didn't make friends very easily but she was so sweet and friendly she was so easy to hang around. We heard the news report that night and from then on Ridgeway was never the same for me. I spent every recess and gym class trying to stay away from the school playground boundaries because I was afraid someone was just outside them waiting to grab one of us kids. I think of her every so often and used to wonder if they ever caught someone for this brutal crime. Thank you so much for this forum because I never thought to Google her name before but thanks to you, now I know. It gives me some closure to hear this animal is rotting in prison for what he did.
     
  21. tsunami0723

    tsunami0723 New Member

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    In October, 1968, I was 8 years old. I lived in the Glen-Mar Apartments off of Crane Highway in Glen Burnie, MD. Quarterfield Rd. wasn't very far from where I lived.

    My sister (3 1/2 yrs. old), my cousin (5 yrs. old), and I were playing on the playground of the apartment complex. The playground was adjacent a wooded area. A man emerged from around the side of a brushy area. He was wearing nothing but a baseball cap and woven deck shoes. I screamed "RUN" to my sister and cousin and ran back to the apartment building in which we lived. When I got to the building I realized that they were not with me and turned to see them standing staring at the man. I ran back and grabbed their hands. He was in a squatting position fondling himself. I remember hearing him say to them "I showed you mine, now you show me yours". I tugged on them and screamed "RUN" again and this time they ran with me.

    My parents called the police. I was forced to graphically show the police what I had seen and describe the man to them. The other girls were too young and too traumatized to really say anything at all. They remember little of the event as adults. The man was never caught.

    My cousin and I have discussed this a time or two over the years. The other day she told me about Richard Chaney and the murder of Elizabeth Ann Metzler. My parents moved from the area in 1970 and I had never heard of this before. I read the particulars of this case and the one of the young woman being last seen at the Harundale Mall. These girls were taken from vicinity of where I had lived. When I read about Richard Chaney and looked at the sketched image of him, I became violently ill and started crying. I can't help but wonder if this was the man that was at the playground. His age is correct, the sexual intent is correct, the area is correct, and I believe in my heart of hearts that this was him. I don't know why (other than perhaps sheer numbers) that we weren't attacked, but I thank God every day that we made it physically unscathed.

    I have carried the image of this man with me all of my life. I had nightmares for years and was afraid of the dark even longer. This incident directly impacted how I raised my children and where I chose to live. I cannot and will not live in a suburban area. I am now a grandmother and I live in mortal fear for my babies. Whether Chaney is the man of my nightmares or not, I pray that he never sees freedom and that he has "enjoyed" every moment of his incarceration.


    Adrienne
     

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