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• Privacy Also A Victim in the Tara Grinstead Mystery
With few solid leads, amateur sleuths sometimes turn to innuendo 8/02/2006
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• Court TV Psychic Hunts for Tara Grinstead
Police, and public split on use of paranormal probers 7/18/2006
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• Marcus Harper's Activities Were Well Documented Before Tara Grinstead Vanished
Investigators checked police records, witnesses, to confirm Marcus Harpers account 5/25/2006
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• Could DNA Hold A Clue To Tara Grinstead's Fate?
Georgia police won't comment on reports of bio evidence in Tara Grinstead probe 5/16/2006
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• Grinstead Supporters Plan New Search for Missing School Teacher
New tips and old leads continue to bubble to the surface in hunt for Tara 4/11/2006
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• As Media Interest Rekindles, Tara Grinsteads Family Continues Search
Grinstead family members say tips and visions help them choose search sites 3/30/2006
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• Supporters Plan New Search for Tara Grinstead
Another tip, another search, one more chance to put an end to the now five-month-old mystery of what happened to beauty queen turned high school teacher Tara Grinstead. 3/23/06
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• Criminologist Gets Death Threat In Tara Grinstead Probe
Maurice Godwin says evidence mounts that beauty queen died within an hour of her disappearance 3/20/06
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• High Tech Expert Defends Sheriffs Handling of Tara Grinstead Search
Those folks bent over backwards for us, says RP Flight Systems Robinson 3/15/06
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• Tensions Mount as Search for Tara Grinstead Drags On
Family of missing teacher faults Irwin County Sheriff 3/14/06
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• Well-Known Criminologist To Use Unique Method in Tara Grinstead Search
Reverse Geographic Profiling to be employed in hunt for missing school teacher 2/24/06
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• The Psychic and the Scientist: Tara Grinstead's Family Try Everything To Find Her
A criminologist who lives by data and Court TV's own psychic profiler join probe 2/23/06
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• Hints and Hunches, Psychics Fail to Find Tara Grinstead
Investigators find no evidence linking ex-con to missing Georgia teacher 2/7/06
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• Wild Rumors Tar Kin of Missing Georgia School Teacher
Tara Grinsteads Brother-In-Law Says Cops Have Quizzed and Cleared Him 1/30/06
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• EquuSearch Plans Hi-Tech Search This Weekend For Tara Grinstead
300 Volunteers Set to Slog Through Muddy Swamps and Peer Into Wells For Clues. Jan 20, 2006.
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• Tara Grinstead Search Moves to Ben Hill County
Trackers Global & Ben Hill County Sheriffs Dept. need volunteers for this weekend 1/03/06
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• Tara's Tree
Grinstead's supporters hold vigil, seek new kidnap laws 12/23/05
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• New $100,000 reward added to Tara Grinstead Case
Mystery donor brings Grinstead reward to $190,000 12/20/05
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• Texas EquuSearch Brings Special Technology to Grinstead Case
Beth Holloway Twitty & EquuSearch director are a draw for volunteers in Tara Grinstead search 12/13/05
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• Beth Twitty To Join Hunt for Tara Grinstead
Beth Twitty, mother of missing Alabama teen Natalee Holloway, will join the search this weekend for Tara Grinstead 12-07-05
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• Tara Sightings & New Timing Questions
New Tara Grinstead sighting raised hopes; timing questioned 12/06/05
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• New Search Planned for Tara Grinstead
Texas EquuSearch has performed aerial survey 11/30/05
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• Taras Family, Friends Hoping for a Miracle
Has the investigation into Tara Grinsteads disappearance tapered off? 11/22/05
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• Search for Tara Grinstead May Go Beyond County, Known Friends
Burned house, three male friends no longer under cloud of suspicion in Grinstead probe 11/18/05
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• Women of Color, Lost Even Among the Lost, Part II
Megan Kanka and Divina Genao, worlds apart in media coverage 11/18/05
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• Women of Color, Lost Even Among the Lost, Part I
Tara Grinstead is the latest in media obsession with pretty white girls 11/17/05
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• Disappearance of Tara Grinstead Divides City
Complicated Grinstead case, lack of information creates tension 11/14/05
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• New Phase in Search for Tara Grinstead
Volunteers lead search for Grinstead; latex glove information expected soon 11/11/05
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• One Aspect of the Search for Tara Grinstead Has Been Completed, But the Probe Continues
Family and volunteers say they will keep looking 11/9/05
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• Private Agent brings new leads to Tara Grinstead Probe
Long-time boyfriend allegedly quarreled with Tara Grinstead before she disappeared 11/7/05
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• Womans T-shirt Sent Out For Testing
Irwin County Womans Softball T-shirt found in lake, may be missing teacher and former beauty queen Tara Grinsteads 11/6/05
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• Tara Grinstead on Emotional Roller Coaster
Teacher and former beauty queen Tara Grinstead had, at times, experienced emotional meltdowns after breakup with boyfriend. 11/3/05
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• Tara Grinstead Publicity Mixed Blessing
Increasing media attention about Tara Grinstead puts spotlight on her family & community 11/3/05
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• Tara Grinstead's State of Mind
Tara Grinstead's relationships could provide clues to her disappearance 11/2/05
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• Search for Tara Grinstead Involves Entire Community
Former Beauty Queen and Ocilla, GA High School Teacher Tara Grinstead Still Missing. 11/1/05
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• Beauty Queen & Teacher Tara Grinstead Goes Missing
Popular, bubbly young woman vanishes from Ocilla, a small South Georgia city, after helping at beauty pageant. 10/27/05
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I guess we all missed this article.

Sunday, Oct. 26, 2008

Missing teacher Tara Grinstead's family seeks closure

Sandy McClurd sums up her friend Tara Grinstead best with a story.

McClurd, who coached cheerleading with Grinstead at Irwin County High School, said Grinstead was having trouble one day getting through to her history students about why the American colonies revolted against the British Empire. So she handed out play money to students and then began “taxing” them on what seemed like every possession they had — book bags, belt buckles, notebooks and more.

The students would say to her, ‘But we need these things!’’’ McClurd recalled with a chuckle. “When the kids ran out of money, she got the school’s DARE officer to ‘arrest’ them by locking them up in the teachers lounge. So the students revolted and put together picket signs against her. She was thrilled that they went and did this on their own.”

There were many reasons why Grinstead was among the school’s most popular teachers, McClurd said. Grinstead believed every senior deserved a yearbook, and she would often lend money to the seniors who couldn’t afford one. She believed every senior should go to the senior prom, and she would lend money or dresses to students who couldn’t afford to dress up for the event.

<<<<<<<<<MUCH more at link>>>>>>>>>>>>
TIFTON — Authorities indicted a Gainesville man Tuesday for posting a video on YouTube stating that he was responsible for the murder of Tara Grinstead, who disappeared from her Ocilla home on Oct. 22, 2005. Authorities said Tuesday the man’s claims were a hoax.

According to a press release issued by the GBI, a Hall County grand jury indicted Andrew Scott Haley on charges of tampering with evidence and making false statements.
“We don’t think he killed her, but what he did cost law enforcement hundreds of dollars and man-hours and a lot of anguish for the family,” said Gary Rothwell, GBI Special Agent in Charge of the continuing investigation into Grinstead’s disappearance.
Haley is charged with making claims in a video posted on the YouTube Web site that he was responsible for Grinstead’s murder. The GBI began looking into the case in February. Authorities said Haley gave information concerning Grinstead’s disappearance and clues as to the location of her body, posting under the name “catchmekiller.” The posts claimed responsibility for the death of 16 people, including Grinstead, and indicated the author intended to kill again.
GBI agents were made aware of the “catchmekiller” video when a link was posted to the video on the Web site dedicated to Jennifer Kesse, a missing Florida woman. Drew Kesse, her father, contacted Florida authorities in hopes that “catchmekiller” had information concerning the disappearance of his daughter.
With the help of the GBI’s High Tech Unit, agents traced “catchmekiller” to Gainesville and identified Haley as a suspect. During one of the video posts, the person posting admitted he knew authorities were looking for him and indicated he would kill his 17th victim if authorities attempted to contact him. The original video has been pulled from YouTube.
The disappearance of Grinstead, a high school teacher and former beauty queen, has drawn national attention. Her story has aired on CBS' “48 Hours” twice and in June 2008, a new clue in the case was revealed on one of the episodes titled “Stolen Beauty” — a glove found at the crime scene. The segment drew similarities between Grinstead’s disappearance and that of Kesse. The investigators in the two cases discussed the cases and the CBS crew followed Georgia investigators to Florida as they taped the show.
According to the indictment against Haley, the tampering with evidence charge stemmed from the “intent to prevent the apprehension of and to obstruct the prosecution of another person, knowingly make and prepare false evidence, to-wit: he made a video and disseminated it to the Internet via “YouTube,” claiming he killed a person later identified as Tara Grinstead and gave clues as to the location of her body parts, in violation of O.C.G.A. 16-10-94.” Also, according to the indictment, the charge of making false statements stemmed from Haley’s allegedly “knowingly and willfully mak(ing) a false and fictitious statement and representation in a matter within the jurisdiction of the calling himself the “catchmekiller” and stating that he killed 16 people, in violation of O.C.G.A. 16-10-20.”
According to information in Rothwell’s press release, other states, including Florida, have laws specifically dealing with Internet hoaxes, but Georgia has not enacted any such laws as of this time.
Lee Darragh, the district attorney for the Northeastern Judicial Circuit, which includes Hall and Dawson counties, would not comment on Haley’s indictment.
Rothwell said that Paul Bowden, the district attorney for the Tifton Judicial Circuit, was instrumental in letting Darragh know the importance of the case against Haley.
Ocilla Police Chief Billy Hancock was listed as a witness for the Hall County grand jury hearing held Tuesday. He could not be reached for comment late Tuesday.
Stolen Beauty
A Young Teacher And A Financial Analyst Vanish. Are Their Cases Linked?
Jan. 10, 2009
This story was originally broadcast on July 1, 2008.
Page 1 of 6
Tara Grinstead, an 11th-grade history teacher in Ocilla, Ga., disappeared without a trace in October 2005. Three months later, another young woman, Jennifer Kesse, also vanished in Orlando, Fla.

There were some similarities in the cases, leading investigators to wonder: are these disappearances somehow linked?

Student Dana Wilder remembers feeling a sense of dread when she heard an announcement in school that teacher Tara Grinstead should report to the office.

Dana was sitting in class at Irwin County High School on that Monday, Oct. 24, 2005. "I knew something was up then. I knew Tara would just not come to school. I think it got all the student's minds worried," Dana remembers.

By the time Police Chief Billy Hancock arrived at Tara's house, nobody had seen or heard from Tara for 34 hours. "When I arrived the car was parked in the carport. You could actually see it as you were pulling up," he remembers.

Hancock says the fact she had gone missing but her car was still there was "certainly a red flag."

But maybe most disturbing was a latex glove, found laying in the front yard.

Hancock noticed that inside the house everything appeared to be normal. "I walked through the house. No apparent sign of struggle, no forced entry," he remembers. "Her cell phone was in the charger by the nightstand. Her pocketbook and keys were missing."

Rothwell's initial impression? "It appeared that Tara may have left on her own. However, we had a glove, a latex glove that we couldn't explain. That glove indicates foul play to us."

He was also intrigued by something else found at Tara's house: a business card found wedged in the front door of Tara's home.

Investigators sealed the house, and took Tara&#8217;s car and the glove in for processing. Then they started reconstructing her last known movements.

Just days after Tara went missing, Rothwell sent the glove to the GBI crime lab in Atlanta. Trace evidence specialist Larry Peterson wasn't optimistic. "It's my experience from past cases that latex gloves like this had a relatively low rate of success," he explains.

But in this case, investigators caught a lucky break: against all odds, investigators had recovered DNA-male profile DNA-from the glove.

And besides the DNA, Rothwell says they also got a fingerprint. But when they compared the DNA and fingerprint to the men in Tara's life, there was no match.

As astonishing as it seems that someone could disappear without a trace, and that a stranger might be involved, shortly after Tara disappeared, the GBI learned of another case of a beautiful young woman who vanished, this one in Orlando, Fla., exactly three months after Tara disappeared. The similarities were eerie.

Asked if there could be a link between the cases, Rothwell says, "Possibly. It&#8217;s something we really, really need to consider."

Even as a child, people were drawn to Jennifer Kesse, says her mother Joyce. "She walked into a room and people noticed her. She was just so vibrant and really full of life," Joyce remembers.

By the time she was in her twenties, her father Drew says Jennifer had blossomed into a beautiful young lady, and her career as a financial analyst was taking off.

Just like in Tara's case, there were no signs of forced entry, and no signs of a struggle. Jen's luggage was still in the front hall, untouched. But her purse, her keys and the cell phone, which she always kept with her, were missing.

Detectives checked for activity on her ATM card and "pinged" her phone to pinpoint its location. There was no response. At 7 p.m., police Sergeant Roger Brennan says they entered her into the system as a missing person and issued an alert for both Jennifer and her car.

Two days after Jennifer&#8217;s disappearance, investigators got a major break in the case when her car was spotted at a housing complex just a mile from her condo.

Luckily, there were security cameras nearby. When police checked the tape, they watched as someone pulled her Chevy Malibu into the lot. Then, a ghostly figure emerges (video) from Jennifer&#8217;s car and calmly strolls away as if on an afternoon walk.

This person is the main suspect in Jennifer's abduction, and should be easy to identify. But because the security cameras only take a photo every three seconds, his face is obscured on the surveillance footage.

Bloodhounds were called in to track any scent from Jennifer&#8217;s car. Brennan says one of those dogs essentially tracked back to her complex.

Could Jennifer's abductor be someone who lived in her own complex? Detectives discovered there was extensive remodeling going on, including some work in Jennifer&#8217;s own unit, and Jennifer had complained to her family that some of the workers were making her feel uncomfortable.

Asked what she said, Joyce says, "They would stop and stare. &#8230;Leering stares is what she would say."

"Were these guys mostly day workers?" Van Sant asks.

Two beautiful, beloved women - for everyone touched by the disappearance of Tara and Jennifer, hope now rests on a DNA match, or someone, somewhere, who will have the courage to share what they know with police.

"Someone has to do the right thing?" Van Sant asks Jennifer's father Drew.

"Yes, and it&#8217;s time. It&#8217;s been time. And it&#8217;s time right now," he says.

"I really want to see justice take place for Tara. I want the person who's responsible he held accountable for it," Tara's stepmother Connie says.

"We'll never give up," Jennifer's mother Joyce vows. "We will never give up the hope of finding her and bringing her home."
In Georgia, investigators have compared the DNA of 150 men to the DNA on the glove outside Tara Grinstead&#8217;s home. There was no match.

In Florida, a task force of 12 top investigators is pursuing new leads in the disappearance of Jennifer Kesse

VIDEO: Stolen Beauty 45:52
In Full: Two missing women, two investigations - do they have one common link? Peter Van Sant reports.
January 11, 2009 8:26 PM;photovideo

Video: Tara Grinstead Interview~Watch a 1999 interview of Tara Grinstead by "The Fun Channel."
Tara Grinstead Interview - 48 Hours - CBS News

A Web site dedicated to finding an Ocilla teacher and former beauty queen who disappeared more than five years ago reported Friday that a television network will include a segment about her in a coming series.

According to the moderator of Justice for Tara Grinstead, crews from NBC have been in Ocilla all week filming for an upcoming series called &#8220;Disappeared.&#8221; When the show will air is unknown.
Dive team searches Irwin Co. creek for Tara Grinstead remains

OCILLA, GA (WALB) –Divers spent much of the day in an Irwin County creek looking for the remains of a school teacher who disappeared five and a half years ago.

Tips in the Tara Grinstead case continue to come in. Investigators say the one that led them to that creek Tuesday is the most substantial they've gotten in a year.

A neighbor who claims to have called in the tip to the sheriff says just a few days after Grinstead disappeared he saw two men acting very suspiciously down by the creek. He says it has been weighing heavy on his heart, so felt it was time to tell someone.

(more at the link)

Holding a thick case file, Wall said, "This is just one case. This is paperwork we have to generate. That's office work."
He is elbow deep in the paper work since his arrival, reviewing unsolved cases such as those of missing Irwin County teacher Tara Grinstead and Twigg's County child Teresa Dean.
Wall said, "I try to bring new ideas or maybe a new approach. Lets go at this a different route."
I understand that "Justice with Judge Jeanine" is planning to tape a segment on Tara for Saturday Night, Nov. 17, 2012.

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