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Old 04-04-2007, 12:32 PM   #16
AVERMAN
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If Ayleen was being chased, I assume that the farmer who initially saw the smoke would have also heard a crash, a car skidding and another car speeding off.

I still suspect suicide.
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Old 04-04-2007, 12:34 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justins5256
My gut feeling is that they didn't want to kill her and leave her body in the house because they knew full well that doing so would lead to a homicide investigation. However, if her death could be made to look like an accident, it wouldn't be questioned, and this did work, at least initially.

Your assumption that they removed her from the house to avoid a full homicide investigation of the scene got me thinking of the scenario. Now, please forgive me if what i'm imagining is refuted by facts stating the contrary, but here's what I envision:

Mrs. Conway goes to fill up her pool, figuring that in the time it would take to get the water to the right amount she could have a nice bath, comfortably get herself dry and dressed, iron the clothes she was to wear (or others), and then come back and turn the hose off and then tend to whatever remained of her daily routine.

Once upstairs and disrobed for her bath, her and an intruder, who may or may not have got in while she was in the backyard with the pool, somehow meet and his fight/flight reaction is to attack. Why? Perhaps she knew him. Perhaps he was familiar enough with the Conways to know they were both supposed to be ou to fthe house at this time. Or perhaps that was the intent all along. Maybe they struggle, but not too much as the house doesn't indicate that. Its my feeling she was sexually assaulted, and THAT is what led to her being removed from the house. The criminal decided to erase any direct eveidence of his presence and assault, so the victim is removed from the house with the intention of killing her in a remote location, unless she was already dead at the house. Perhaps strangled due to there being no signs of blood loss. Her car is driven, either by him or her but my guess is him, to a place HE knows of and is familiar with. If she isn't dead by this time, she is killed at that scene and then doused with accelerant and burned. The assailant flees on foot, familiar enough with the area, and perhaps the Conways, to know he's safely within his alotted window of time to get himself somewhere for an alibi.

Okay. Like I said if there are parts of my summation that obviously cannot be, due to known facts/accepted theories, then please excuse my ignorance of them, I've only seen the segment once and I was a little distracted while it was on. Plus...I was a bad boy and I haven't read this complete post before I gave my opinion. If my summation is erroneous, please illuminate me as to what and why. That would help me to reorganize it.


Some things I would like to know:

Would justins5256's "homicide investigation" be any more thorough than the inevitable investigation of the house once she became a "missing person"/her body was found? Would it in any way differ in the methods of investigation?

The iron. I am assuming that this was before the days of automatic shut-off timers on irons (oh, how did you people live in those days?!?) so that the iron must have been on and hot. Do we know from her family if this was her routine? Was she known to let an iron get hot while doing other things, and occasionally forget about it? How much of Mrs. Conway's daily routine can explain the way the house was found?

Where they able to tell if the burned body in the car was clothed? Alive or dead at the time of impact? Is there evidence at the car site of another car being there? Any witnesses to any of the incendiary acts or is just assumed what type of accelerant was used and how it was applied?

Maybe all of those were answered in the segment. I gotta go rre-watch it.
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Old 04-04-2007, 01:02 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVERMAN
If Ayleen was being chased, I assume that the farmer who initially saw the smoke would have also heard a crash, a car skidding and another car speeding off.
Not necessarily. He could have been in his tractor which would have been very loud and just happen to look up and see the smoke. Meaning just because he saw smoke doesn't mean he was close enough to have heard anything especially being in the cab of a loud tractor.
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Old 04-04-2007, 02:04 PM   #19
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Not necessarily. He could have been in his tractor which would have been very loud and just happen to look up and see the smoke. Meaning just because he saw smoke doesn't mean he was close enough to have heard anything especially being in the cab of a loud tractor.
That's true. Was there any evidence of a second car being in the area where the car and body was found? I can't remember if they mentioned it on the segment.
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Old 04-04-2007, 02:07 PM   #20
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I think a suicide is highly unlikely. It would explain why she left her purse, but leaving the iron on seems to unnecessarily endanger the welfare of others. And, supposing she hated her family and that's why she was killing herself and that she didn't care what heppened to them or their house, why would she drive 19 miles away from her home to a remote area to roll the dice that a car accident would do the trick? Why not take pills or get a gun or do anything with a much higher likelihood of success, and why not do it much closer to home? And, if she was intentionally killing herself, why the skid marks in front of the guard rail?

I suppose it is also possible she was being chased; crystaldawn, I had thought of a similar scenario this morning in which she was fleeing from the robbers in a panicked state (not necessarily being chased, however), had gotten lost, and then lost control of her car on that lonely dirt road.

I also thought it possible this morning that she was perhaps having an affair. This might explain why "no one knew what she was doing out there" --- perhaps she was going to the home of a lover no one knew about. I reasoned, in this version of events, that she might have intentionally left things looking like she had just run out for a minute. That way, if anyone came home unexpectedly, she could claim that was why she had gone --- a two minute trip to buy a newspaper, or whatever --- and then gotten caught up talking to someone she met. In other words, perhas she intended the state of disarray to be her alibi, but accidentally ended up dead.

That doesn't seem overly likely to me either, however; every different theory always has to have some reasonable explanation for why her purse was left behind. There are only a few ways to explain that, and suicide and abduction (not an accident while out on some legitimate errand or while out trying to meet a lover for a midafternoon trist) are the most prominent. I just don't see suicide as a reasonable possibility given the manner and location of her death, so murder remains, to me, the most logical remaining assumption.

Of course, much of this hinges on what the husband says he found at his home when he arrived back; we basically only have his word that the iron was on, the water for the pool was running, a bath was poured, and the phone was off the hook (I assume the presence of the purse is verifiable indepently of the husband, but I could even be wrong there). In a wild scenario, perhaps the husband himself had her killed, and now uses the "I insist it was murder" act to protect himself should it ever come to light she actually was murdered (though I assume Pat Conway is likely dead now, given his apparent age in the segment). This doesn't seem likely to me at all, of course, because it leaves a glaring question: how did the killer murder Ayleen? I can't imagine anyone riding in the car with her would have attempted to intentionally induce her to drive off the bridge or into a guard rail at 50-60mph for fear of his own safety. As I argued previously, a staged accident followed by an intentional arson seems equally unlikely from the physical evidence at the scene.

This is a really tough case. I think some things are more or less ruled out, as I said before, by the presence of skid marks on the road and the speed at which the vehicle was apparently travelling (suicide, a murder followed by someone rigging the car so that it drove into the guard rail on its own with only a dead woman inside), but I feel like that does not actually limit the possibilities much. And maybe I've ruled out suicide too quickly --- if she was trying to drive off the bridge into the water below (which would at least make more sense as a suicide attempt than slamming into a guard rail, but I didn't get the impression from the segment that the water the bridge ran over was all that deep or that the gap the bridge went over was all that high, both of which argue against suicide to me --- again, why would you pick a method that had such a large built-in chance of not working?), and something went wrong, perhaps that's why she hit the break and ultimately ended up crashing into the guard rail.

Im leaning toward a one-car accident at the moment, with some kind of bizarre and apparently never discovered reason for her to be out where she was (fleeing from an intruder, being chased, hurrying toward a rendez-vous point with her lover), but I'm not at all sold on this as the only explanation.
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Old 04-04-2007, 02:07 PM   #21
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Was there any evidence of a second car being in the area where the car and body was found?
Not that the segment mentions.
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Old 04-04-2007, 02:39 PM   #22
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I think we are all getting too far out in trying to figure out what happened here although it is bizarre. The facts seem to support something happening in the Conway home that caused Aileen to leave in a hurry.

There had to be some type of an emergency to cause her to flee. We have no evidence that Aileen was suicidal or that she was an irresponsible person who would have left her house in such a state of disarray before departing so everything to me points to some type of emergency occuring on that day which caused Aileen to flee the house.

Now what caused her to do that, I don't know. I don't believe she was having an affair though as to me that doesn't seem like a big enough emergency for her to flee out the door leaving her house in the state it was found in. The problem was if it was a true emergency (such as Aileen running off to help someone in need) then that person after Aileen died would've come forward and said "Aileen was coming to help me..." or such and such. Also there would likely be some means of determining where Aileen was headed in such an emergency as she had to get news of this emergency from somewhere (phone call, someone dropping by etc.)

Which leads me back to the robbery theory, I can't remember how far the Conway home is from the bridge (if the segment even mentioned it) but I can't imagine a high speed chase between Aileen Conway and the people that were chasing her and nobody else saw it.

This again leads you to think if Mrs. Conway was already dead when the car hit that bridge. I just don't know, the skid marks theory is interesting although a crafty murderer could have easily staged that as well to make it look like an accident. The fact that there were traces of arson (verified by an arson expert) makes me learn more towards a second party being involved here rather than this just being a case of a traffic accident.

Although then again it could have easily been a case of a hit and run accident where someone unintetionally ran Mrs. Conway off the road and then when they saw her car burst into flames didn't even bother to stop and help her because they didn't want to be responsible for her accident or death - the just drove on by.
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Old 04-04-2007, 03:17 PM   #23
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I've searched for info on this case and come up a total blank. Is her name definitely spelled "Ayleen"?

One thing I would want to bring up are the skid marks on the road. The road obviously was a dusty dirt path, and most measurements of skid marks to gauge the speed a car was travelling are done on asphalt. When I was a young irresponsible teenager I used to make impressive "skid marks" on dirt roads by hitting the emergency brake.

Is it possible that the car wasn't in fact travelling at 50-60 mph? Is it possible that the car in fact wasn't even braking as it ran off the road?
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:16 PM   #24
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I've searched for info on this case and come up a total blank. Is her name definitely spelled "Ayleen"?

One thing I would want to bring up are the skid marks on the road. The road obviously was a dusty dirt path, and most measurements of skid marks to gauge the speed a car was travelling are done on asphalt. When I was a young irresponsible teenager I used to make impressive "skid marks" on dirt roads by hitting the emergency brake.

Is it possible that the car wasn't in fact travelling at 50-60 mph? Is it possible that the car in fact wasn't even braking as it ran off the road?
You make an interesting point. I'm no expert on tires, etc., and in the segment UM depicts the road that Ayleen Conway was found on as basically a dirt road. I have no idea what the difference between regular "tire tracks" and "skid marks" would be on a dirt road, assuming that any difference could be noticed. I was simply going by the wording of the segment, and my understanding of what skid marks typically indicate.
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Old 04-06-2007, 12:52 AM   #25
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Just rewatched this one today. I lean hugely towards Aileen being murdered. Also, she left behind her purse with her drivers license and glasses in it, and the patio door was opened. There had been a rash of burglaries in the area at that time. Really unfortunate, she seemed to have 6 or 7 kids.
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Old 04-10-2007, 03:36 AM   #26
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Another theory:

She was interrupted by an assailant while doing her regular household chores. She was then forced to her car, perhaps injured or bound in some way. Assailant drives. The assailant rigs the gas pedal, probably by jamming it with something. The assailant exits the car where the church bulletin is found and either forces Ayleen to the driver's seat or places an unconcious Ayleen behind the wheel and sends the car on the way. Ayleen frees herself from her bonds or rouses enough to attempt to stop the car accounting for the skid marks. She is injured in the accident. The assailant then finishes the job by torching the car.

Why didn't she just jump from the car? She was perhaps afraid that if she jumped from the car the assailant would still be there to harm her or was just too disoriented or in shock.

Why not steer the car from danger? Would she have had time to gain control of the car?

This theory would require that there be two assailants, one in Ayleen's car and one following in another.
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Old 04-11-2007, 12:07 AM   #27
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Whatever happened to Aileen, it had to have happened during a short period of time. A picture at the beginning of the segment shows that she had 7 children. Since nobody else had to have been home at the time, I guess we're too assume that this happened on a week day while the children were at school. The farmer discovered her car burning at 10:40 a.m. - that means that she was killed just a couple hours after the children left for school.

I have no idea what could have happened to her though. At first I leaned towards her coming home early that morning, possibly after dropping the children off at school, to a robbery at her house and she was "taken care of." But there were no signs of a struggle at the house. If there WAS indeed a struggle, the killers could have cleaned it up but they would have taken SOMETHING and as far as I can remember, nothing was reported stolen in the house.

But I don't get the suicide angle either. There was no history of depression, stress or anxiety. Even so, if she wanted to take her own life, there would be so many other faster more conveniant ways to get it done.

Strange case.
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Old 04-11-2007, 02:28 AM   #28
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There WAS jewelry missing from the house. I read this on Newsbank.
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Old 04-11-2007, 02:37 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deelynn
Another theory:

She was interrupted by an assailant while doing her regular household chores. She was then forced to her car, perhaps injured or bound in some way. Assailant drives. The assailant rigs the gas pedal, probably by jamming it with something. The assailant exits the car where the church bulletin is found and either forces Ayleen to the driver's seat or places an unconcious Ayleen behind the wheel and sends the car on the way. Ayleen frees herself from her bonds or rouses enough to attempt to stop the car accounting for the skid marks. She is injured in the accident. The assailant then finishes the job by torching the car.

Why didn't she just jump from the car? She was perhaps afraid that if she jumped from the car the assailant would still be there to harm her or was just too disoriented or in shock.

Why not steer the car from danger? Would she have had time to gain control of the car?

This theory would require that there be two assailants, one in Ayleen's car and one following in another.
This could be, but it seems like an awful lot of things would have to go right, and again, the church bulletin was found about 200 yards from the site of the car crash. Could a car with a rigged accelerator have gotten up to 50-60mph in that short a space? That was the estimate of the speed at impact, from evidence at the scene.

One way to make this scenario a little more plausible would be to discount the church bulletin as having anything to do with Ayleen's car. In my original post on this case, I expressed doubts about whether or not the particular Church bulletin found at the scene could really be positively linked to Ayleen's car, and I still have those doubts. I think it is just as, if not more, likely that the bulletin came from another source (if the Churches I've attended are any indication, it's not as if their bulletins are in short supply or are so rare that if one is found in a town near where the Church is located that it can be precisely traced to whoever last had it). Discounting the bulletin, then, it's possible the killer could have rigged the accelerator with Ayleen behind the wheel any distance from the eventual crash site, which makes more or less any eventual speed possible.

However, I still think this is far too involved to have actually worked. In order to rig the accelerator, the killer would have had to have the car off, and either himself behind the wheel or at least outside the car, bending underneath the steering wheel, which almost certainly means Ayleen must have been far enough out of the way to allow him access to the gas pedal (there isn't a whole lot of room underneath the steering wheel of a car, even in one as big as the one Ayleen appeared to be driving). Then, the perpetrator would have had to put Ayleen's back behind the wheel.

Presumably, Ayleen would have to have been either unconscious or dead for this operation to work, because 1) who would voluntarily get behind the wheel of a car that was rigged to accelerate with no way to stop it? and 2) if she had been restrained in some way, I would think some evidence of that would have been found. And yet, to move her into position behind the wheel, so that it would appear she was driving, I think would have been next to impossible for a single assailant: she was not a small woman. Perhaps if there were two people, but, like all conspiracy theories, this is threatening to spiral out of control fairly quickly. To come up with a scenario where an unconscious or dead Ayleen was placed behind the wheel of her own car and the accelerator rigged, we have to imagine two assailants collaborating, even though there is no physical evidence that there was even one other person with Ayleen that day. Is it possible? Sure. But is it likely? No.

What I am starting to think is that perhaps Ayleen felt the onset of a medical emergency --- some kind of tightness in her chest or symptoms of a stroke seem likely --- and, thinking she could make it and that it would be faster, attempted to get herself to help on her own, rather than calling an amublence. Indeed, perhaps she tried that, but either couldn't remember a number or found she was having trouble speaking or operating the phone in some way, and so quickly changed her plan (which would explain why the phone was off the hook when her husband returned home). She got into her car, and attempted to take herself to help (it would be interesting to know where the nearest hospital was in relation to where she was found), and simply suffered the end phase of whatever it was she was feeling on the way (the final rip of a heart attack, or some last debilitating moment of a stroke). During the final seizure she reflexively hit the break as her car careened out of control, but that reaction came too late; her car, which she was driving at a high rate of speed trying to get to help quickly, drifted into the guard rail, and due to an exposed gas tank (thanks to the gas cap being missing) was set ablaze by the impact of metal with metal, which undoubtedly gave off a few sparks (I see little ones all the time when I rub my metal hangers against the metal rod I hang them on, so wouldn't an electrically charged automobile impacting a guard rail produce even bigger sparks?). If the road she was on was not on the way to the hospital, perhaps what she was suffering from was a stroke, which was affecting her memory/sense of direction even as she was driving. A stroke would also explain an aborted telephone call --- perhaps the stroke was causing her to be unable to speak, and that left herself as her only option for finding help before it was too late.

This scenario seems the best and simplest way to account for everything found at the house and the scene.

Last edited by mozartpc27; 04-11-2007 at 07:46 PM.
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Old 10-08-2007, 10:09 AM   #30
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This could be, but it seems like an awful lot of things would have to go right, and again, the church bulletin was found about 200 yards from the site of the car crash. Could a car with a rigged accelerator have gotten up to 50-60mph in that short a space? That was the estimate of the speed at impact, from evidence at the scene.

One way to make this scenario a little more plausible would be to discount the church bulletin as having anything to do with Ayleen's car. In my original post on this case, I expressed doubts about whether or not the particular Church bulletin found at the scene could really be positively linked to Ayleen's car, and I still have those doubts. I think it is just as, if not more, likely that the bulletin came from another source (if the Churches I've attended are any indication, it's not as if their bulletins are in short supply or are so rare that if one is found in a town near where the Church is located that it can be precisely traced to whoever last had it). Discounting the bulletin, then, it's possible the killer could have rigged the accelerator with Ayleen behind the wheel any distance from the eventual crash site, which makes more or less any eventual speed possible.

However, I still think this is far too involved to have actually worked. In order to rig the accelerator, the killer would have had to have the car off, and either himself behind the wheel or at least outside the car, bending underneath the steering wheel, which almost certainly means Ayleen must have been far enough out of the way to allow him access to the gas pedal (there isn't a whole lot of room underneath the steering wheel of a car, even in one as big as the one Ayleen appeared to be driving). Then, the perpetrator would have had to put Ayleen's back behind the wheel.

Presumably, Ayleen would have to have been either unconscious or dead for this operation to work, because 1) who would voluntarily get behind the wheel of a car that was rigged to accelerate with no way to stop it? and 2) if she had been restrained in some way, I would think some evidence of that would have been found. And yet, to move her into position behind the wheel, so that it would appear she was driving, I think would have been next to impossible for a single assailant: she was not a small woman. Perhaps if there were two people, but, like all conspiracy theories, this is threatening to spiral out of control fairly quickly. To come up with a scenario where an unconscious or dead Ayleen was placed behind the wheel of her own car and the accelerator rigged, we have to imagine two assailants collaborating, even though there is no physical evidence that there was even one other person with Ayleen that day. Is it possible? Sure. But is it likely? No.

What I am starting to think is that perhaps Ayleen felt the onset of a medical emergency --- some kind of tightness in her chest or symptoms of a stroke seem likely --- and, thinking she could make it and that it would be faster, attempted to get herself to help on her own, rather than calling an amublence. Indeed, perhaps she tried that, but either couldn't remember a number or found she was having trouble speaking or operating the phone in some way, and so quickly changed her plan (which would explain why the phone was off the hook when her husband returned home). She got into her car, and attempted to take herself to help (it would be interesting to know where the nearest hospital was in relation to where she was found), and simply suffered the end phase of whatever it was she was feeling on the way (the final rip of a heart attack, or some last debilitating moment of a stroke). During the final seizure she reflexively hit the break as her car careened out of control, but that reaction came too late; her car, which she was driving at a high rate of speed trying to get to help quickly, drifted into the guard rail, and due to an exposed gas tank (thanks to the gas cap being missing) was set ablaze by the impact of metal with metal, which undoubtedly gave off a few sparks (I see little ones all the time when I rub my metal hangers against the metal rod I hang them on, so wouldn't an electrically charged automobile impacting a guard rail produce even bigger sparks?). If the road she was on was not on the way to the hospital, perhaps what she was suffering from was a stroke, which was affecting her memory/sense of direction even as she was driving. A stroke would also explain an aborted telephone call --- perhaps the stroke was causing her to be unable to speak, and that left herself as her only option for finding help before it was too late.

This scenario seems the best and simplest way to account for everything found at the house and the scene.
No one ever responded to this post I thought I just about solved this case!
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Frequently Asked Questions

1) How do I contact Unsolved Mysteries with information on segments?

If you any information on cases, you can contact them via:

Website: www.unsolved.com

Contact form on official Unsolved Mysteries site

Please note that their old mailing address and 1-800 phone number no longer work.


2) Where can I watch Unsolved Mysteries?

Lifetime

Lifetime Schedule / Lifetime Site

Escape Schedule / Escape Site


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