Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Criminal Profiling Topic of the Day: Whatever Happened to Chandra Levy?

Remember Chandra Levy? The Washington Post just did a nice spread on the cold case, still ruminating about what actually happened to her and if the married Congressman Gary Condit really did have a hand in her murder. But, last we heard, police theorized some local serial killer was wandering about Rock Creek Park (where her body was finally found in a ravine) did her in.

The whole investigation was somewhat bizarre, with many choices that appeared not to make sense. Leads were not followed up and certain reasonable avenues of thought simply not pursued. One of the biggest questions was the issue of Chandra choosing to go jogging in Rock Creek Park. The location she was found at was four miles from her apartment. She was not an avid jogger and told friends she thought Rock Creek Park was dangerous. She could have jogged from her apartment to that location, but it is quite a distance for a person not into jogging, especially if she planned to run back. She could have taken the public transportation to get closer to that location and begin her jog or walk (as supposedly she checked the weather and it was going to be a beautiful day). The possibility can't be ruled out.

Of course, then there is Condit. The location where Levy was found in Rock Creek Park is pretty much a skip and a jump away from Condit's home. Did they meet and go for a walk? Or was she already dead (a woman heard a scream earlier in the day at her condo) and the searches on the computer were clever ruses to make it look like she was alive? Was she then driven over and dumped.

One of the most difficult things about analyzing a case at a distance is not being able to see for yourself the actual terrain. Was it possible for someone to drive near the site Chandra's body was found and dump her easily enough? Or would the person that killed her clearly need to be walking on the path as well because it was so inaccessible?

Condit is a pretty squirrelly character. He had affairs with numerous women, stringing them along, and attempting to keep their relationships secret. I believe Chandra was naive and foolish and thought Condit was really going to dump his wife and marry her. This is what she told a friend. If she stuck to her guns, she would become a massive liability for Condit, especially if she were pregnant and refuse to abort the baby.

Did he kill her? There is a good amount of evidence that makes one focus on him if she wasn't done in by a serial killer.

I doubt this case will ever be closed any good physical evidence is long gone. If Condit did her in, he got away with a "good enough" murder. If somebody else did it, nothing at this point is going to link him to the crime either.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown


Inspector Winship said...

Condit was absolute slime, but he was also an experienced and highly successful politician. He had numerous affairs in the past each of which could have meant his political downfall so why would he decide to have Levy killed? Her disappearance was the only reason the affair even became public knowledge in the first place. I think it more likely Condit would have bought her off rather than doing something so politically stupid. Now his wife on the other hand...

There certainly is a lot of circumstantial evidence pointing to him though.

Pat Brown said...

My guess is Condit's wife was well aware of his adulterous ways, but she liked being a congressman's wife (like all the other political wives that "stand by their man" after they have been found doing sexually naughty things).

I do not think Chandra could be paid off. She was a girl from a pretty well-off family and hardheaded. I think she would have stood her ground and refused to drop the relationship. There was a theory she might have been pregnant, and if she were, I bet she would have refused an abortion or to be paid off for this either. I think Condit finally met a girl he couldn't just toss off.

Anonymous said...

A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office said Wednesday that the indictment "speaks for itself" and had no further comment.

The 24-year-old Levy had just completed an internship with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons when she disappeared in May 2001 after leaving her apartment in jogging clothes. The Modesto, Calif., native's remains were found in Rock Creek Park a year later.

Guandique's lawyers have said the case against him is flawed because it is largely based on the accounts of "jailhouse snitches" interviewed years after the slaying. Guandique has been serving a 10-year federal prison term in California for two other attacks in the same park where authorities say he attacked Levy.

Something must tie him to the crime, right?