Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Was She Murdered? Part 1

We bought our 1941-built house in 1990.
I refer to it as a bungalow, and although it lacks some of the architectural characteristics of the true bungalow style (deep eaves, large front porch), it does share the bungalow's populist spirit, general layout, and small size.

Onto the death of Marie, who apparently owned & lived in our house around 1986-87. I had housemates back then (now-husband Kurt was not yet one of them). I got home from work one Spring evening in 1992 and housemate Jim was sitting on the couch drinking a Bass and looking uncharacteristically, quietly freaked out.

What's going on?
Jim tells me that an hour ago, a man rang the doorbell claiming to be a private investigator, hired by Marie's parents, attempting to find evidence to get the police to re-open the investigation into their daughter's death,even though the case had been closed about 4 years. It had been ruled a suicide and her parents refused to believe it was a suicide. We had never even heard of Marie before now.

The man went on to say that he would like to take pictures of our shower because he expected to find a bullet mark/chip on two tiles. Jim wonders what kind of scam this might be and doesn't let the man inside, but then the guy describes the exact location, within our shower, of the two nicks in the tiles. Jim looked at the business card, decided the PI was legitimate, and led him to the bathroom to take pictures.

Sure enough, the PI headed straight to the two little chips in the shower wall tiles and took a bunch of photos. He also pointed on the bathroom floor, describing the angle her body was found, diagonally with her head near the hinge-side of the door. The PI also let Jim read the autopsy report, which showed the angle of the gunshot that killed her: above her right breast, maybe shoulder level or higher, with the bullet traveling down diagonally towards her heart.

The PI said that the police said that the other bullet casing found was from a "practice shot" into the bathtub and that the two chips in the tile were ricochet marks from that "practice shot." Jim wasn't given a copy of the report, but he remembered that Marie was somewhere in her mid- to late twenties, had breast implants and a small rose tattoo on her chest.

Although I'd never felt any weird haunted vibes in our house and considered myself fairly sensitive to bad house feelings, Jim and I both decided to spend that night at friends' houses.

The next morning,
I bought a new ceramic candle holder and pale blue candle taper to fit in it and returned home. I sat down by the edge of the bathtub, near the deepest bullet ricochet chip mark, and lit the new candle. I just sort of talked to Marie's spirit, telling her how much I loved living in the house and that, although I didn't understand how she'd died, I felt comfortable here, like maybe she was at peace and that I also wanted her to know her parents were still thinking of her and trying to get the investigation re-opened. I told her I didn't know if she would even want the investigation re-opened but thought she'd want to know that her parents did.

Later that evening,
I called the woman from whom we'd bought the house to see what, if anything, she knew about Marie...

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