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They've identified the 2nd body in Oregan

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Ore. to Seek Indictment in Deaths
The Associated Press
Aug 27 2002 11:32AM

OREGON CITY, Ore. (AP) - Police don't believe there are any more bodies at the property where the remains of two missing teenagers were found, but they will check to see if the man who rented the house is linked to other disappearances, the police chief said Tuesday.
Authorities said Monday a body recovered from a barrel buried under a concrete slab in Ward Weaver's yard was that of 12-year-old Ashley Pond. The body of her friend, 13-year-old Miranda Gaddis, was found during the weekend in a backyard shed.

Weaver, 39, who has been in jail since Aug. 13 on an unrelated rape charge, has not been charged in either death and has denied any involvement in the teens' disappearances. But Greg Horner, the chief deputy district attorney in Clackamas County, said he would ask a grand jury to indict Weaver.

``We expected this,'' said Tim Lyons, Weaver's attorney. ``We are going to await the return of the indictment and see what the charges are and proceed from there.''

Investigators returned to the property on Monday with high-tech equipment and a backhoe to see if any additional evidence might have been hidden there.

However, Police Chief Gordon Huiras said Tuesday on NBC's ``Today'' that investigators had concluded their search and ``we are satisfied there are no further remains on the property.''

Huiras also said police are looking into whether Weaver might be connected to other disappearances.

``That'll certainly be something the investigators on the task force will continue to investigate,'' he said.

Huiras did not elaborate. There was no immediate response to calls to his office seeking additional comment.

Ashley's family last saw her on Jan. 9. Miranda disappeared March 8 from the same apartment complex, just a few hundred yards down the road from Weaver's home in this Portland suburb.

Some relatives said they were bothered that the bodies were found so close to the girls' apartment complex.

``I get angry because she was right there the whole time,'' said Terri Duffey, Miranda's aunt.

Authorities have said that they moved as fast as they could to investigate Weaver, given constitutional limits on searches.

FBI spokeswoman Beth Anne Steele said search dogs were allowed in Weaver's back yard a few months ago.

And FBI Special Agent in Charge Charles Mathews told ABC's ``Good Morning America'' on Tuesday there was evidence ``the remains located in the shed had not been there at the time the dogs searched.''

Weaver was arrested on Aug. 13 on charges of raping his 19-year-old son's girlfriend. His distraught son, Francis Weaver, told emergency dispatchers after the alleged rape that his father had admitted killing Ashley and Miranda.

``I'm sorry that any of this even happened,'' Francis Weaver said Tuesday on ``Good Morning America.'' ``I hope that now that (the girls' families) have closure and everything, they can go on with their lives and live their lives as good as the can.''

He would not give specifics on why he believes his father killed the girls, saying public comment could hinder prosecutors' efforts.

The younger Weaver said he would have called 911 even without the alleged rape.

``It was inevitable,'' Francis Weaver said. ``My father probably knew that I was to come forward, and he just did that as a grand finale to his sick scheme.''

Last summer, Ashley had accused Ward Weaver of molesting her, but he denied the allegations and was never charged. Family members and friends have said they had a close, and at times inappropriate, relationship.

Weaver's father, Ward Francis Weaver Jr., is on death row in California for two murders. A raped and murdered woman's body was found buried in his yard in 1982.
post #2 of 13
This makes me so sad. They keep showing the interview they did with Weaver after Ashley's disappearance where he said she "made up the allegation of rape against him because she was mad at him!" He said he "got on her" because of her "mouth." I hope he fries in hell!
post #3 of 13
This is so tragic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And I agree with Hissy...I hope this man gets what he deserves!!!
post #4 of 13
Thankyou airprincess for letting us know of the further developments. This story has not been covered at all over here in Australia so I have been following it here.
post #5 of 13
Missing girls bodies found

Also if anyone wants to email the families here is the link for that as well.

post #6 of 13
Thanks hissy for the link. What a sad, sad story - especially since there seemed to be some warning signs beforehand.
post #7 of 13
Mike and I were talking about this tonight. It is all over our television these days. But we wonder if maybe the son also had a hand in this despicable crime or if he did it solo and his father is covering for him?
post #8 of 13
Hmmm...yes, food for thought...
post #9 of 13
That is an interesting thought, MA. Especially considering the damning words the son is using. I haven't seen the affadavit for the search warrants, but it was speculated that the son may have turned the father in. He said that his father confessed to him. He has also said that he is ashamed to have come from a monster like his father. (Sorry if this is redundant for some, but I figured I would rehash it for those who aren't receiving the news coverage.)

Of course, the FBI isn't telling what evidence they have collected, but with forensics being what it is today I think it would be very difficult for someone to take the rap for someone else.
post #10 of 13
Oh this is awful. I've not heard anything about this tragedy. It's like the 2 ten year olds in England. Their classroom assistant is being charged as an accessory and her boyfriend a school caretaker has been sectioned as insane for the double murder.

Why do people have to do these things. I really don't understand this kind of rage - insanity, OK (well, not ok really), but cold calculated premediated murder?

Is it getting worse, or is it just that we are hearing more due to better and quicker communications.
post #11 of 13
Yola, I think it is both-

I think it is escalating, though why I couldn't tell you. Mike and I were talking last night about the suplus of serial killers that seem to be in the state we wanted to find peace in. There is the Green River Killer, the I-5 killer, and several others. For a state as beautiful as Oregon is, it makes little sense why an influx of killers would be here. Perhaps it is because of the woods that are so plentiful where crimes can be hidden for years and years? I don't know. I think the media was a sick part of this crime as well. They were reporting erroneously before the fact saying they knew the bodies were that of the two girls, that Weaver had confessed, when he still hasn't. It was a media zoo and very sad because the very private issue of the familys turmoil and grief was NOT protected in any way.
post #12 of 13
Hissy - I agree. I don't mean to launch an attack on the media, after all I work in the industry myself. However, there are certain sectors of the press that thrive on essentially fabricating threads within these tragedies in order to generate sales. This can be about the victims, their families or the perpatrators of the attacks (who are also victims until proven guilty - imagine if you're innocent and how your life would be destroyed if someone as much as HINTED at your being guilty).

There is now a huge backlash against the media following their foul practice of putting up reward money for the capture of the girls' murderers, and their general frenzied reporting, hounding of local people in the area and the families of Holly and Jessica as well as the families of the 2 suspects.

This stupid action turned a small village into a ghoulish tourist attraction. I'm sure it's done the same in Oregon.

I think there is a lot to be said for the way society is increasingly polarising the have and have nots - whether intelligence, money or social status. This is leaving whole swathes of the population feeling inadequate and increasingly angry with no means of expression except to strike out.
post #13 of 13
Earl and I were talking about this fairly recently too, but pertaining to the child abductions. Statistically, violent crime rates have been declining (at least in the US), and child abductions have been declining also. However, the media is covering more and more of these cases on a national level. The Amber Alert System, which puts any missing child information on the airwaves like a weather alert, has also increased our awareness as well as the recovery rate of the victims, and coviction rate of the offenders. The other thing is, you just don't hear about the really horrible serial killers like Bundy, Gacy, Dahmer, Ramirez, etc. It seems like they are catching the killers before their victim numbers reach those horrible numbers. There are probably still some on that level out there, but they aren't prevalent.

Sometimes I think the media coverage of these cases is good. If one parent watches their child a little closer and thwarts an abduction before it happens, then it was worth all the scares. However, when they are so keen to report the "latest developments" that they get all the information wrong, or when they compromise the investigation, then they've gone too far.
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