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Thread: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

  1. #21

    Default Re: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

    Wish I did. Good question.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2010

    Default Re: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

    I'm sure the office where he worked might know that, but then again, that would be info not given to the public. The person who took over his cases would know maybe.

  3. #23

    Default Re: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

    Don't know where to find it but thought there was an article early on about something he was doing. Dont recall......will TRY to think..

  4. #24

    buttonsmoke Ray Gricar,Missing Centre County DA declared dead legally

    More than six years after he disappeared, Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar has been declared dead legally.
    Amos Goodall, an attorney for the Gricar family based in State College, said Centre County President Judge David E. Grine approved a June 30 petition to declare Mr. Gricar dead at a hearing today.
    Mr. Goodall said he expects law enforcement officials to continue their probe, and the Gricar family will continue to cooperate with investigators.
    "As far as I'm aware, this is the end of the family's involvement in the investigation of [Mr. Gricar's] disappearance," Mr. Goodall said. "I'm sure that the investigation will continue, and hopefully something will happen. But as far as the family's concerned, it's now over."
    Mr. Gricar went missing April 15, 2005, during a day off from work. He told his partner, Patricia Fornicola, that he intended to go for a drive and has not been heard from since.
    His car, laptop and laptop hard drive were eventually recovered, but investigators have been unable to find Mr. Gricar.
    Based on the type of investigation law enforcement launched into the disappearance, the publicity surrounding that probe and "the type of person Mr. Gricar was," Mr. Goodall said he argued that Mr. Gricar must be deceased.
    Investigator Matthew Rickard testified at the hearing, as well as Ms. Fornicola. Mr. Gricar's daughter, Lara Gricar, gave her testimony via phone. No testimony was entered to challenge the family's petition, Mr. Goodall said.
    The petition to declare Mr. Gricar dead was filed June 30 at the request of Lara Gricar "to provide the family some relief," Mr. Goodall said.

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  5. #25

    Default Re: Ray Gricar,Missing Centre County DA declared dead legally

    BELLEFONTE -- Former Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar, missing since April 2005, was declared dead Monday.
    Judge David Grine issued the ruling after hearing testimony from Gricar’s daughter and his former girlfriend that they don’t believe Gricar walked away from his life or entered a witness protection program. Bellefonte police Detective Matthew Rickard testified that an investigation spanning six years has failed to locate the prosecutor.
    Laura Gricar, testifying by phone from her home near Seattle, said she believes “without a doubt” that her father is dead. She also said “without a doubt” that her father wouldn’t have wanted to cause the hardships that resulted from his disappearance.
    Patty Fornicola, Ray Gricar's live-in girlfriend at the time of his disappearance, also testified that he wouldn’t have wanted to cause such hardships.
    Visibly upset, Fornicola declined to comment after the hearing.
    Attorney Amos Goodall, who represented Lara Gricar in petitioning the court for a declaration of her father’s death, said the ruling will let the family heal.
    “It’s time for this family to have closure,” he said. “It’s time for them to move on.”
    Pennsylvania law allows for the presumption of death of a missing person after seven years of unexplained absence. A judge can also declare a missing person dead in advance of the seven-year statute if presented with a substantive amount of facts and circumstances.
    The ruling allows Lara Gricar, who has served as trustee of her father's estate, to begin to administer the estate and distribute his assets to his heirs.
    Goodall said if Ray Gricar were to reappear, anyone who received distributions from his estate would have to return them.
    Bellefonte police Detective Matthew Rickard testified that all leads on the case have been and continue to be investigated, but so far all have led nowhere.
    Like Lara Gricar and Fornicola, he testified that he doesn’t think Gricar was involved in anything that would have made him a candidate for a witness protection program.
    Gricar was last seen April 15, 2005, when he took the day off from work. He called Fornicola around 11:30 a.m. to ask her to check on their dog and told her he was taking a drive through Brush Valley.
    It was the last time he was heard from. Fornicola testified Monday that she called him numerous times that day, and all her calls went to his voice mail.
    Gricar’s Mini Cooper was found in a parking lot of a Lewisburg antiques mall the next day.
    Gricar’s county-issued laptop turned up in the Susquehanna River several months later, with the hard drive removed. The hard drive, later found in the river, was too damaged to yield any data.
    Both Lara Gricar and Fornicola testified that Ray Gricar was looking forward to his future, and wouldn’t have walked away from his life. Fornicola said he was planning to retire that December, and was looking forward to spending more time with her.
    Lara Gricar said she last talked to her father on April 14, 2005, when she was a student at the University of Washington. She said she called “to say hello and tell him I love him.”
    At the time, she was engaged and said her father knew her fiancé well.

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  6. #26

    Default Re: Ray Gricar,Missing Centre County DA declared dead legally

    For some reason, his being declared dead seems so final to me. As if everyone has just given up. I can understand that amd the why they would give up, but being me, it's so hard to give up...
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  7. #27

    Default Re: Ray Gricar,Missing Centre County DA declared dead legally

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — A former prosecutor who disappeared six years ago was declared dead Monday.
    Centre County District Attorney Ray Gricar disappeared on April 15, 2005, about nine months before he was to retire as the central Pennsylvania county's top prosecutor. He had taken a day off from work and had told his girlfriend that he was going for a drive. His car later was found abandoned.
    Centre County Judge David Grine ruled Monday that Gricar be declared dead, the Centre Daily Times newspaper reported. The ruling allows Gricar's daughter, Lara Gricar, to begin to administer the estate and distribute his assets to his heirs.
    Lara Gricar, who had asked for the death declaration, testified by phone that she believes "without a doubt" that her father is dead.
    "It's time for this family to have closure," said attorney Amos Goodall, who represented Lara Gricar. "It's time for them to move on."
    Under Pennsylvania law, a missing person can be presumed dead after seven years of unexplained absence. A judge can declare the missing person dead before seven years if presented with sufficient facts and circumstances.
    Ray Gricar's car was found at an antiques market in Lewisburg, near the Susquehanna River, 45 miles from the Centre County seat in Bellefonte. His laptop was found in the river without its hard drive and was fished out of the river in October 2005.
    In the days after Gricar's disappearance, his girlfriend told police he had discussed buying a program to clean the county-issue hard drive of private information before returning it.
    Authorities had said they were considering all possibilities to explain the disappearance, including that Gricar was a homicide victim, that he committed suicide or that he was living in hiding for some unknown reason.
    Goodall said if Gricar reappears, anyone who received distributions from his estate would have to return them.

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  8. #28

    Default Re: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

    I spoke with Detective Matthew Rickard, who has been leading the investigation into the 2005 disappearance of the elected District Attorney of Center County Pennsylvania, Ray Gricar.
    In 1998, Gricar decided not to pursue charges after the mother of a young man reported to Penn State Police that her son had been inappropriately touched by Jerry Sandusky as they showered together in the Penn State locker room.
    Rickard tells me he is currently working to see if there could be any possible link between Gricar’s disappearance and the currently charged activity against Penn State athletic officials, but says there has been nothing to suggest Gricar - who is still missing - had knowledge of any of the other alleged activities.
    Read: Shocking details from the Penn State grand jury report
    Although the conspiracy theories are being pushed forward, Rickard tells me, from knowing Gricar himself, and the type of prosecutor he was, there must not have been the evidence to prosecute Sandusky back in 1998. Rickard admits that is speculation on his part, and is in the midst of finding out more information on Gricar’s investigation of Sandusky back in 1998.
    In April, 2005 Gricar disappeared from the District Attorney’s office never to be seen again. He called his girlfriend and said he was going to take a leisurely drive that afternoon. His abandoned car was found near an antiques store in Lewisberg, Pennsylvania. His computer was found later in the Susquehanna River, but the hard drive had been taken out. Months later when the river banks receded, the hard drive was found about 100 yards from where the computer had been located. It was determined by investigators that the hard drive had been intentionally removed from the computer and repeated tests, including one done by the FBI, could not retrieve any data. The hard drive was too damaged.

  9. #29

    Default Re: District Attorney Ray Frank Gricar

    State Police to Take Over Ray Gricar Investigation

    Local authorities decided late last year it was time to hand the cold-case of Centre County’s missing district attorney over to the Pennsylvania State Police.
    Bellefonte Police Chief Shawn Weaver told that he met with Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller toward the end of 2013 to discuss the nearly 9-year-old case.
    “Basically, I felt that we could not give the case the attention that it deserved any longer. Our resources are very minimal compared to that of the state police and the state police has been involved from the start of the investigation,” says Weaver. “We are still a part of the investigation, however the state police has more manpower to run down the leads that we get day to day, or the leads that we get that require us to travel outside our area, so it makes sense, because they have statewide jurisdiction and more resources to pull from.”
    State police announced Monday it will take the lead in the investigation. That means state police will receive any new tips related to the case as well as oversee the investigative task force formed by the Centre County District Attorney’s office.
    As part of the transition, state police investigators intend to review the status of the investigation and “thoroughly look at what can be done to further this investigation,” state police said in a prepared statement Monday.
    In 2005, then-District Attorney Ray Gricar disappeared after leaving his home to go for a drive. Later, authorities would locate his vehicle parked outside of an antique mall in Lewisburg, a place he frequented. Police also located his laptop and hard drive in the Susquehanna River. In 2011, the court declared Gricar legally dead at the request of his family.
    At the start of the new year, Weaver says he met with the state police to review the case file as well as transfer all related documents and evidence.
    The Bellefonte Police Department has only one full-time criminal investigator. Weaver says it was difficult for his department to handle day-to-day investigations as well as chase down leads in the Gricar case.
    “We’re very busy for the size of department that we are. The caseload for the detective is pretty heavy and I don’t have the manpower, the resources to send a guy out to chase these leads down that are out of our area,” says Weaver. “It just makes sense to me that a much larger agency that has a bigger pool of resources in house do this.”
    Weaver says the case has been at a stalemate, but with a new set of investigators on the case, that could change.
    “We ran it out. We did everything that we could,” he says. “It’s a different set of eyes on the case. I think the more eyes in law enforcement that look at it, the better off the case will be. … The department has expended a lot of resources in the last eight years and I’m happy with the effort that we put forth and I’m sure the state police will continue it.”
    Weaver says he’s still optimistic the mystery will one day be solved.
    “I have always felt that one piece of information will break the case open. Someone out there, other than Ray Gricar, has information. They might not even know they have the information. There’s something out there. … It’s just a matter of time,” Weaver says. “I hope for his friends and family members that this piece of information will come forward. And that’s why it’s so important that every piece of information is followed up on.”
    Anyone with information regarding the disappearance of Gricar can contact the state police tip-line at 1-800-472-8477.

  10. #30

    news DA Ray Gricar's disappearance plays into denial of appeal in high-profile murder case

    Agreeing that the mysterious disappearance of District Attorney Ray Gricar and other factors would make the case exceedingly difficult to retry, a state court has denied a convicted killer's appeal in a 22-year-old Centre County murder case.
    The Superior Court's decision, issued this week, involves an appeal James Robert Cruz Jr. first filed in 1997 over his first-degree murder conviction and life prison term for the 1993 slaying of 17-year-old runaway Dawn Marie Birnbaum.
    Cruz's appeal "languished" in the court system without action for 15 years before coming to the county court's attention again in 2012, President Judge Emeritus Kate Ford Elliott noted in the Superior Court's opinion on the case.
    Her opinion denying Cruz's appeal adopts a February 2014 decision by county Judge Jonathan D. Grine.
    The Birnbaum murder was a high-profile case. The Indiana teen's body was found dumped in a snowbank near Interstate 80 in March 1993, three days after she ran away from a reform school in Maine. She died from strangulation.
    Investigators used DNA, tire tracks and gas receipts to tie the then 36-year-old Cruz, an Ohio truck driver, to the slaying. He was convicted of the murder in June 1994.
    Cruz's 1997 appeal went nowhere because, even though the county court appointed a lawyer to represent him, Cruz took no further action to advance his case. Judge Ford Elliott wrote that it is unclear what brought the appeal to the county court's attention again in 2012, when a new lawyer was appointed to represent Cruz.
    When the appeal was revived, the district attorney's office opposed it, arguing that the passage of time would greatly enhance the difficulty of prosecuting Cruz if he was granted a new trial.
    In the opinion the state judges adopted, Judge Grine noted that it was Cruz's responsibility to move his 1997 appeal ahead in a "timely fashion." Yet for 15 years Cruz "sent no letters to this court, filed no petitions, motions or any other pleading to indicate he wished to be appointed new counsel or wished to proceed with his petition in any way," Grine wrote.
    Grine agreed with the DA that the prosecution would be "substantially prejudiced" if it had to retry Cruz now. The 2005 disappearance of Gricar, who prosecuted Cruz in 1994, made it difficult for the DA's office to even respond to Cruz's appeal, Grine found.
    Also, the judge noted that six witnesses who testified at the 1994 trial, including the lead investigator, Birnbaum's mother and an FBI agent assigned to the case, have died, while efforts to locate nine other witnesses have failed. Reading the 1994 testimony of those witnesses into the record at a new trial would be "insufficient," Grine concluded.
    He observed as well that another county judge issued an order in 2003 allowing the state police to destroy evidence they possessed from the case.
    Judge Ford Elliott called Grine's ruling "well-reasoned." She agreed that Cruz's claims that Grine shouldn't have denied his long-idle appeal have "no merit."

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