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Old 09-13-2009, 06:52 AM   #16
dallascowboyfan
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Default Find out about the real William Bradford Bishop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattc
This is one of the strangest mysteries UM ever profiled. I have a lot of questions, as Im sure you all do. The thing that I wonder is: 1) If Bishop did leave the country to start a new life, why did he drive down so far to a rural part of Eastern NC, then go all the way to a rural part of Western NC? You would think he would have just fled to an airport before anyone knew about the bodies, or at the very least, parked his car somewhat near a place where he could get to an airport. I am from NC, and the closest airport from where his car was found is at least three hours away.

2) I find the Italy bathroom siting almost unbelievable. Remember, eyewitness accounts are notoriously suspect, and we've all seen/known people who look remarkably similar. The "friend" might have seen a guy who looked like Bishop (the guy said the person had a beard and was disheveled, which would make it harder to identify him, considering it seemed Bishop was always clean cut, etc. What do you guys think?

3) It was reported that he had $400 bucks with him, and I'm assuming that his bank accounts, credit cards were tracked and showed nothing. Did he plan it so far ahead that he had already opened up another account somewhere else? If so, why take out the 400 the night before the murders? And if the siting was accurate, why was he disheveled. I feel if Bishop did run off to Europe, he prob. didn't lead a vagabond life, but rather a comfortable one.

4) Finally, what is most disturbing about this is the fact that a seemingly "normal," healthy adult man could one day snap and come home and murder his family, without anyone ever seeing it coming. I wish they had interviewed a psychiatrist or something, b/c this was a very strange situation. What motivated him? I didn't like that the "friend" implied that his wife and mother were nagging and always put him down... It almost implied that he had a reason to do it. No?

My belief is that, if he was so far gone that he was capable of killing his family that way, then he had probably lost it psychologically and ended up dying in the mountains, or killing himself. I just don't see this thing making much sense, unless this murder had been in the works for a while, and there was more planning involved than the public, or even the police, know of.

Any thoughts? This case continues to haunt me.

While looking this case up online, I found several articles about it, but this one stood out the most because it was much more detailed not just about the crime, but about the kind of man William Bradford Bishop really was. Anyone who is wondering how a man who seemed to have everything could just snap one day may want to read this article. You'll find out that he was anything but the perfect man. Possibly the ultimate two-faced person.

From Family man to Running man.

For 33 years, a man indicted for the bizarre, inexplicable murders and mutilations of his mother, his wife and his three young sons has been playing cat-and-mouse with his pursuers. It's time to catch this rat.

By Stacey Hawkins

On the evening of March 3, 1976, one day after he allegedly bludgeoned his entire family to death in Bethesda, Maryland, William Bradford Bishop stopped at the Outdoor Sports Store in Jacksonville, North Carolina. The store owner remembers seeing Bishop walk in with a woman and a dog. Bishop spent $15.60 on what the owner believes was a pair of tennis shoes.

Fifteen days later and 600 miles away, Bishop's blood-soaked station wagon was found in Tennessee at the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Law enforcement agencies including the FBI, the National Park Service, local police and professional trackers conducted a massive search by land and air. The search continued for seven days, but the bloodhounds lost Bishop's scent in the parking lot where the car was found. Vanished.

Early in the investigation, police found evidence that Bishop may have had a female accomplice. Today, that phantom accomplice could provide the information that investigators seek. Twenty-three years later, despite a tremendous amount of national media coverage and an unceasing criminal investigation into his disappearance, Brad Bishop continues to elude those who want to ask him, "Why?"

"America's Most Wanted" has profiled Bishop six times over the years. As head of the lead investigating agency, Montgomery County Sheriff Raymond Kight has an office filled with leads, including a giant binder full of tips from AMW viewers. "Bishop was indicted a week after the murders and I've been looking for him ever since," Kight said.

AMW host John Walsh likens this case to that of John List, the infamous fugitive who murdered his wife, mother, and three children in Westfield, New Jersey. At the time, List was the oldest case ever profiled on "America's Most Wanted." The show used an aged forensic bust because no recent photographs of List existed. (AMW commissioned the same artist to sculpt an age-progressed bust of Bishop; see images accompanying article.) List was apprehended 18 years after the murders as a direct result of his profile on "America's Most Wanted." That success gives Walsh hope that AMW will announce Bishop's capture, too. "We're never going to give up on Brad Bishop," Walsh said. "The impossible cases just take longer."

To many, the Bishops seemed a picture-perfect family. Brad and Annette Bishop were high school sweethearts who met in California when Annette was a cheerleader and Brad was a football player. They had three boys, ages 14, 10 and 5 when they were killed, and they lived in an upscale community named Carderock Springs in Bethesda, Maryland, with Brad's 68-year-old mother, Lobelia.

Always on the go, the Bishops were jet-setters who liked nothing better than dashing off for a weekend of skiing. To casual acquaintances, Brad appeared to be good dad who was involved in his son's lives. He attended school functions and took the boys out for rafting trips.

But those who knew him well say Bishop was aloof and seemed to care more for his dog than he did for his own children. "Brad Bishop was not particularly close to his children," said Roy Harrell, a colleague of Bishop's. "He was a very strict disciplinarian and he believed in having control. He also believed in having the final word on anything affecting them." Constantly aware of Brad's need to be orderly, Annette and Lobelia Bishop tried to keep the house neat and keep the children's toys out of Brad's way.

As a U.S. foreign service officer, Bishop thrived on assignments to foreign posts. Co-workers describe Bishop as very bright and particularly gifted in languages. He loved learning about foreign cultures, and seemed more at ease when he was abroad. Brad and Annette had lived overseas for ten years in Ethiopia, Milan, Gaborone and Botswana. Bishop was always ecstatic when he received promotions, and wrote family and friends to tell them the news. He often commented that he dreaded the day he would have to sit behind a desk. In 1975 Bishop was assigned as assistant chief of the division of special trade activities and commercial treaties in the State Department's Washington office. He and Annette had been living in Maryland for three years, and though Brad was looking forward to another assignment overseas, his family had established a comfortable niche there. Annette planned to attend day classes at the University of Maryland and their sons had developed a familiar routine.

Annette Bishop was a talented sculptor and painter and is described by friends as "cheerful, energetic, pleasant, outgoing, and very pretty." Annette was a model foreign service wife dedicated to furthering her husband's career. Because she was also dedicated to their three children, she stayed home and raised the boys with the help of her mother-in-law. "It was a fantastic arrangement really," says Alvina Long. "Mrs. Bishop felt needed. She never criticized Annette, but was always very supportive." Lobelia Bishop was so supportive that she gave her son and daughter-in-law $30,000 for a down payment on their ranch-style home.

But by February 1976, Bishop was becoming increasingly frustrated with the State Department personnel system. According to Harrell, "A lot of us felt we were not getting good assignments, and if you don't get the good assignments, then you don't get promoted. If you don't get promoted you are selected out, which is a euphemism for being fired." Though Harrell was frustrated with the system, he felt Bishop was unduly concerned about his promotion rate. "I frequently told him, when you reach the higher grades, it takes longer to get promotions, they don't come as frequently as they do at a junior officer level." Harrell remembers seeing Bishop days before the murders and commenting that he looked like he had lost his best friend. Bishop was distraught about being passed up for yet another promotion.

Police say five days after being passed over, Bishop put a very calculated plan in motion. Police say Bishop left work early, withdrew $400 in cash, and purchased a small sledgehammer and a two-and-a-half gallon gas can. Police say Bishop filled his station wagon's gas tank and the gasoline can. Police believe it was late on March first or early on the second when Brad Bishop went to his wife in the study of their home and struck her over the head, then tried to cover her body with one of his son's ski jackets. Bishop's mother Lobelia, 68, was struck down in the bathroom adjacent to her bedroom after returning from walking the dog. Brad Bishop III, 14, was hit particularly hard, his face and skull beaten beyond easy recognition, and pieces of his bone lay on the carpet in the room. Police believe the oldest son was beaten worse than the rest of the family because he may have woken up during the attack and tried defending himself or getting away and that may have caused his dad to become more determined to kill him. That scenario is horrifying for obvious reasons as it implies that the kid suffered. The two younger Bishop boys, Brenton Germain Bishop, 10, and Geoffrey Corder Bishop, 5, were beaten to death while they lay sleeping in their bunk beds. Both died quickly of multiple blows with a blunt instrument the same instrument that struck Lobelia Bishop, their brother and possibly their mother. A pair of men's pajama pants, splattered with blood, were later found on the upper closet shelf in the master bedroom. Detective Joe Sargent of the Montgomery County Sheriff's office says, "I remember the [crime] scene quite vividly. It was the worst scene I've ever been on."


Police say Bishop dragged his victims one by one down the corridor, into the foyer, and out through the door to the back of the Bishop's Chevy wagon. The back seat was folded down and the bloody bodies piled on top and covered with a bloody white sheet and blanket. According to the FBI, Bishop would have likely followed a course down I-95 and over to Suffolk, VA, down Rt. 32 and onto Hwy. 64 East. In this way, Bishop could have avoided the toll booths and possible detection along I-95 near Richmond.


On March 2, 1976, at about 12:40 p.m. Ranger Donald Brickhouse answered a radio call reporting a two-acre fire in Tyrrell County, North Carolina. There he discovered a shallow grave containing what appeared to be two bodies, a female lying on her left side, and a male lying on his right. The clothes were somewhat burned, and the hair bleached from the gasoline that had been poured over the bodies before they were lit on fire. Brickhouse theorizes that the murderer emptied half the gas can over the bodies, lit the bodies in the hole, and then panicked when the fire blew among the young pines. The sheriff arrived and three bodies were pulled from the grave at about 6 p.m. To the horror of all involved, there were two smaller bodies at the bottom of the grave, bringing the total body count to five. Authorities say that there was a tremendous amount of underbrush in the area. If the fire hadn't spread, the bodies may never been found.

North Carolina investigators traced Lobelia Bishop's coat and the shovel used to dig the graves back to Bethesda, Maryland. Ten days after the bodies were discovered, police determined that the fingerprints taken from the gas can and the bloody fingerprints found in the Bishop home belonged to Brad Bishop. On March 18, 1976, Bishop's car was discovered by Park Ranger Bill Burke while he was making rounds at the Elkmont Camping Ground in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. The car had reportedly been parked in the campground lot for several days without a permit. The back seat of the vehicle was down and blood had seeped down into the spare tire compartment. Also recovered with the vehicle were an ax and a Bank Americard receipt for $15.60 from a sporting goods store in Jacksonville, North Carolina. Brad Bishop and his dog Leo were nowhere to be found.

Over the years many investigators have worked this case. Detectives, sheriff's deputies, and agents from the sheriff's office, the FBI, Interpol and the State Department continue to track Bishop in an effort to bring him to justice. Some theorize that the key to finding Bishop is trying to understand his mind frame and why he committed these horrible acts of violence. Joe Sargent is the detective who went out to investigate after neighbors reported a curious lack of activity from the Bishop household. He believes that Bishop had a very low stress threshold, but that the murders were definitely premeditated.

Forensic psychologist Richard Walter agrees. He believes that Bishop had rationalized the murders even before they had been committed. "A trigger activated the killing," says Walter. "He was ready, waiting for the opportunity, and the trigger came." Walter describes Bishop as a narcissist who operated at the level of image. That is why he married and had children. Bishop did what was professionally appropriate, but he did not form any real bonds with his family. Walter explains that Bishop's "perfect image" was shattered when he lost the State Department promotion. "He sees how well his family is doing and they become a threat to him," Walter said. "Now they are no longer any use to him. He can cash out. He gets rid of them, leaves a trail and then says, Come catch me you fool!' He becomes a hero to himself for life. Now he has a purpose again."

Today, Bishop continues to be seen in the same cities he visited while in the foreign service: Stockholm and Sorrento, Italy. The most recent sighting was in Basel, Switzerland, in September 1994. A woman who was a member of Bishop's tennis club and knew the family well, saw Bishop on a train that was parallel to the one she and her husband had boarded. She says that when he saw her and her husband, Bishop hid behind a newspaper and as his train pulled away, Bishop lifted both hands in a gesture of relief. Unfortunately authorities unable to locate Bishop when the sightings were reported.

Investigators on this case believe that Bishop is living a new life overseas. Because he is not one to settle, Bishop, now in his early sixties, has probably acquired a very good job and an "ideal" family who knows nothing about his past. Police believe that Bishop now has salt and pepper hair and may be wearing a goatee or a beard and mustache. Bishop speaks fluent English, Spanish, French, Serbo-Croatian and Italian. He enjoys sports, especially tennis, swimming, camping, fishing, skiing. Bishop also enjoys motorcycle riding and flying.

However, Bob Keefer, the Montgomery County Police Department's now-retired chief deputy, believes that a "mystery woman" in North Carolina is the key to closing the case. In a letter to Bishop dated March 15, 1976, federal prison inmate Ken Bankston wrote, "Yes I am most sure she is in the North Carolina State penitentiary." The letter mentions an area known as Creswell just four miles from the grave site. Keefer believes that the "she" in Bankston's letter is the accomplice who spirited Bishop away from the remote area. According to Keefer, the female accomplice probably drove Bishop away from his abandoned station wagon in the Smoky Mountains. Though he was in good physical condition, Bishop would have to be a survivalist to escape from the densely wooded and mountainous area on foot. Bankston died in prison shortly after the letter was mailed, and a check of all female inmates released by the state around the time of the murders turned up nothing. "Someone in North Carolina has the information we need," Keefer said. "The woman is the key. If we can find her, everything will fall into place."

Those left behind

Regardless of whether Bishop acted alone or what his motives were, the emotional fallout was far-reaching and enduring, as evidenced by comments from Brad III's classmates at the then-Thomas W. Pyle Junior High School in Bethesda.

Brad was in the ninth grade when he was killed. He had only been at Pyle a little more than a year, enrolling after his family returned from a State Department stint in Botswana, South Africa. Former classmates said the teenager quickly made a place for himself. His sunny personality, good looks and sophistication from having spent most of his life overseas gave Bishop entry to the "in-crowd" without becoming part of the "in-crowd" cliques, classmates said.

"He was my boyfriend in the eighth grade," said Joanne Fitzgerald Bryant of Rockville. "He had a grace and worldliness about him. I remember him talking about Botswana and going on safari. It was exciting. In eighth grade, you're just starting to begin talking to boys. I was madly in love with him."
Bryant said Brad's home life appeared solid. She took gymnastics with him after school and said his mother and grandmother, who lived with the family, often came to watch. Family ski trips were frequent and Brad's father often brought his son to school, Bryant said. "They were very nice," she said.

The boy's murder and that fact that his father allegedly committed it traumatized the school and left lasting scars, Bryant said.
"[We] were in denial when it was pointing to the father," Bryant said. "Everyone was like, 'No way. How could that be?' For a 15-year-old to process, this is so difficult. It was so brutal. I had nightmares for two years.. We'd drive by his house and just sit there and look at it. I can get choked up now."

Scott Matejik of Bethesda was in Bishop's science class when the killings occurred. "I will never forget ... when the principal and vice principal walked down the hall and cleaned out his locker," Matejik said. "That memory of finality and death really made an impression that day and I can always picture that moment in time."

Bishop's murder was not the only tragedy to befall Pyle that year. Another ninth-grader died a few months earlier, the victim of a drunk driver. After Bishop's death, the school organized a fund-raiser to buy memorial plaques for both of the students. The plaques, which today adorn a hallway wall near Pyle's main entrance, were initially placed in the school's courtyard, recalled Gary Clarke, a social studies teacher who is now an instructor at St. Albans School for Boys in Washington, D.C. "We were shell-shocked. It was so tragic. I remember thinking it was almost like a cemetery out there," Clarke said.

Joyce Rinehart, at the time Pyle's attendance secretary, was one of the first at the school to realize something awful had happened to the attractive, well-mannered student who she recalled as being the image of his father. Brad had not come to school for several days, and his family had been uncharacteristically silent about the absences. When Rinehart called the home, a detective answered. "I asked could he give any information and he said no. I immediately [went to the office] and said there's something drastically wrong at the Bishop house. It was on the news that night," Rinehart said. Rinehart, who today works in the office of Bannockburn Elementary School in Bethesda, said she saw the Bishops regularly because the father frequently brought his son to school.

"You just couldn't believe that the father would do this. You never think of someone taking someone's life. It was such a shock, but I guess we had no idea who he really was and what he was really capeable of," Rinehart said.
She's also convinced she could spot him, even after all this time.
"He's very distinctive looking, a handsome gentleman. His manners are impeccable," Rinehart said.
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Old 09-13-2009, 09:10 AM   #17
dallascowboyfan
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Join Date: Sep 11, 2009
Location: Dallas, Fort Worth
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Default The real brad bishop

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastermind
By disposing the bodies, it makes the case a missing persons case involving all 5 people than a quadruple homicide case. Which gives Brad more time to plan his disappearance. Think of how long the timeline was from when the cops found the bodies and the police entered the Bishop's home and then connected the two cases. If he left the bodies were they were, the police would have been on the scene for a murder investigation and would hae but an APB on Brad Bishop before he could get out of the country. Remember he has to plan where he's going to live and get enough cash and supplies to survive on. He can't just jump on board to some random location and wing it from there.



Considering they did the same type of work, it's not unusual they went to the same countries. Brad Bishop would have gone to a place that he was familliar with. That being said I would not be surprised if Brad's co-worker was actually abetting him to some degree and agreed to meet with Brad.




Not necessarily. Keep in mind that the people that tend not to get noticed in society are homeless and vagabonds. If Brad had decided to live a life as a comfortable person with a family or business, there would be a greater chance that the authorities were spoting him. Keep in mind that Brad speaks several languages and it is not unusual to travel vagabond style through Europe. Farmers and hostels tend to be very accomadating to people. Some will even let you live for free for a while. I dunno given exchange rates, Brad probably could live of $400 for a while.




If you watch the segment again, it is made very apparent that Brad Bishop was a very slow ticking time bomb that was waiting to explode. He was hardly happy with his family and professional life.



[/quote]While looking this case up online, I found several articles about it, but this one stood out the most because it was much more detailed not just about the crime, but about the kind of man William Bradford Bishop really was. Anyone who is wondering how a man who seemed to have everything could just snap one day may want to read this article. You'll find out that he was anything but the perfect man. Possibly the ultimate two-faced person.

From Family man to Running man.

For 33 years, a man indicted for the bizarre, inexplicable murders and mutilations of his mother, his wife and his three young sons has been playing cat-and-mouse with his pursuers. It's time to catch this rat.

By Stacey Hawkins

On the evening of March 3, 1976, one day after he allegedly bludgeoned his entire family to death in Bethesda, Maryland, William Bradford Bishop stopped at the Outdoor Sports Store in Jacksonville, North Carolina. The store owner remembers seeing Bishop walk in with a woman and a dog. Bishop spent $15.60 on what the owner believes was a pair of tennis shoes.

Fifteen days later and 600 miles away, Bishop's blood-soaked station wagon was found in Tennessee at the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Law enforcement agencies including the FBI, the National Park Service, local police and professional trackers conducted a massive search by land and air. The search continued for seven days, but the bloodhounds lost Bishop's scent in the parking lot where the car was found. Vanished.

Early in the investigation, police found evidence that Bishop may have had a female accomplice. Today, that phantom accomplice could provide the information that investigators seek. Twenty-three years later, despite a tremendous amount of national media coverage and an unceasing criminal investigation into his disappearance, Brad Bishop continues to elude those who want to ask him, "Why?"

"America's Most Wanted" has profiled Bishop six times over the years. As head of the lead investigating agency, Montgomery County Sheriff Raymond Kight has an office filled with leads, including a giant binder full of tips from AMW viewers. "Bishop was indicted a week after the murders and I've been looking for him ever since," Kight said.

AMW host John Walsh likens this case to that of John List, the infamous fugitive who murdered his wife, mother, and three children in Westfield, New Jersey. At the time, List was the oldest case ever profiled on "America's Most Wanted." The show used an aged forensic bust because no recent photographs of List existed. (AMW commissioned the same artist to sculpt an age-progressed bust of Bishop; see images accompanying article.) List was apprehended 18 years after the murders as a direct result of his profile on "America's Most Wanted." That success gives Walsh hope that AMW will announce Bishop's capture, too. "We're never going to give up on Brad Bishop," Walsh said. "The impossible cases just take longer."

To many, the Bishops seemed a picture-perfect family. Brad and Annette Bishop were high school sweethearts who met in California when Annette was a cheerleader and Brad was a football player. They had three boys, ages 14, 10 and 5 when they were killed, and they lived in an upscale community named Carderock Springs in Bethesda, Maryland, with Brad's 68-year-old mother, Lobelia.

Always on the go, the Bishops were jet-setters who liked nothing better than dashing off for a weekend of skiing. To casual acquaintances, Brad appeared to be good dad who was involved in his son's lives. He attended school functions and took the boys out for rafting trips.

But those who knew him well say Bishop was aloof and seemed to care more for his dog than he did for his own children. "Brad Bishop was not particularly close to his children," said Roy Harrell, a colleague of Bishop's. "He was a very strict disciplinarian and he believed in having control. He also believed in having the final word on anything affecting them." Constantly aware of Brad's need to be orderly, Annette and Lobelia Bishop tried to keep the house neat and keep the children's toys out of Brad's way.

As a U.S. foreign service officer, Bishop thrived on assignments to foreign posts. Co-workers describe Bishop as very bright and particularly gifted in languages. He loved learning about foreign cultures, and seemed more at ease when he was abroad. Brad and Annette had lived overseas for ten years in Ethiopia, Milan, Gaborone and Botswana. Bishop was always ecstatic when he received promotions, and wrote family and friends to tell them the news. He often commented that he dreaded the day he would have to sit behind a desk. In 1975 Bishop was assigned as assistant chief of the division of special trade activities and commercial treaties in the State Department's Washington office. He and Annette had been living in Maryland for three years, and though Brad was looking forward to another assignment overseas, his family had established a comfortable niche there. Annette planned to attend day classes at the University of Maryland and their sons had developed a familiar routine.

Annette Bishop was a talented sculptor and painter and is described by friends as "cheerful, energetic, pleasant, outgoing, and very pretty." Annette was a model foreign service wife dedicated to furthering her husband's career. Because she was also dedicated to their three children, she stayed home and raised the boys with the help of her mother-in-law. "It was a fantastic arrangement really," says Alvina Long. "Mrs. Bishop felt needed. She never criticized Annette, but was always very supportive." Lobelia Bishop was so supportive that she gave her son and daughter-in-law $30,000 for a down payment on their ranch-style home.

But by February 1976, Bishop was becoming increasingly frustrated with the State Department personnel system. According to Harrell, "A lot of us felt we were not getting good assignments, and if you don't get the good assignments, then you don't get promoted. If you don't get promoted you are selected out, which is a euphemism for being fired." Though Harrell was frustrated with the system, he felt Bishop was unduly concerned about his promotion rate. "I frequently told him, when you reach the higher grades, it takes longer to get promotions, they don't come as frequently as they do at a junior officer level." Harrell remembers seeing Bishop days before the murders and commenting that he looked like he had lost his best friend. Bishop was distraught about being passed up for yet another promotion.

Police say five days after being passed over, Bishop put a very calculated plan in motion. Police say Bishop left work early, withdrew $400 in cash, and purchased a small sledgehammer and a two-and-a-half gallon gas can. Police say Bishop filled his station wagon's gas tank and the gasoline can. Police believe it was late on March first or early on the second when Brad Bishop went to his wife in the study of their home and struck her over the head, then tried to cover her body with one of his son's ski jackets. Bishop's mother Lobelia, 68, was struck down in the bathroom adjacent to her bedroom after returning from walking the dog. Brad Bishop III, 14, was hit particularly hard, his face and skull beaten beyond easy recognition, and pieces of his bone lay on the carpet in the room. Police believe the oldest son was beaten worse than the rest of the family because he may have woken up during the attack and tried defending himself or getting away and that may have caused his dad to become more determined to kill him. That scenario is horrifying for obvious reasons as it implies that the kid suffered. The two younger Bishop boys, Brenton Germain Bishop, 10, and Geoffrey Corder Bishop, 5, were beaten to death while they lay sleeping in their bunk beds. Both died quickly of multiple blows with a blunt instrument — the same instrument that struck Lobelia Bishop, their brother and possibly their mother. A pair of men's pajama pants, splattered with blood, were later found on the upper closet shelf in the master bedroom. Detective Joe Sargent of the Montgomery County Sheriff's office says, "I remember the [crime] scene quite vividly. It was the worst scene I've ever been on."


Police say Bishop dragged his victims one by one down the corridor, into the foyer, and out through the door to the back of the Bishop's Chevy wagon. The back seat was folded down and the bloody bodies piled on top and covered with a bloody white sheet and blanket. According to the FBI, Bishop would have likely followed a course down I-95 and over to Suffolk, VA, down Rt. 32 and onto Hwy. 64 East. In this way, Bishop could have avoided the toll booths and possible detection along I-95 near Richmond.


On March 2, 1976, at about 12:40 p.m. Ranger Donald Brickhouse answered a radio call reporting a two-acre fire in Tyrrell County, North Carolina. There he discovered a shallow grave containing what appeared to be two bodies, a female lying on her left side, and a male lying on his right. The clothes were somewhat burned, and the hair bleached from the gasoline that had been poured over the bodies before they were lit on fire. Brickhouse theorizes that the murderer emptied half the gas can over the bodies, lit the bodies in the hole, and then panicked when the fire blew among the young pines. The sheriff arrived and three bodies were pulled from the grave at about 6 p.m. To the horror of all involved, there were two smaller bodies at the bottom of the grave, bringing the total body count to five. Authorities say that there was a tremendous amount of underbrush in the area. If the fire hadn't spread, the bodies may never been found.

North Carolina investigators traced Lobelia Bishop's coat and the shovel used to dig the graves back to Bethesda, Maryland. Ten days after the bodies were discovered, police determined that the fingerprints taken from the gas can and the bloody fingerprints found in the Bishop home belonged to Brad Bishop. On March 18, 1976, Bishop's car was discovered by Park Ranger Bill Burke while he was making rounds at the Elkmont Camping Ground in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. The car had reportedly been parked in the campground lot for several days without a permit. The back seat of the vehicle was down and blood had seeped down into the spare tire compartment. Also recovered with the vehicle were an ax and a Bank Americard receipt for $15.60 from a sporting goods store in Jacksonville, North Carolina. Brad Bishop and his dog Leo were nowhere to be found.

Over the years many investigators have worked this case. Detectives, sheriff's deputies, and agents from the sheriff's office, the FBI, Interpol and the State Department continue to track Bishop in an effort to bring him to justice. Some theorize that the key to finding Bishop is trying to understand his mind frame and why he committed these horrible acts of violence. Joe Sargent is the detective who went out to investigate after neighbors reported a curious lack of activity from the Bishop household. He believes that Bishop had a very low stress threshold, but that the murders were definitely premeditated.

Forensic psychologist Richard Walter agrees. He believes that Bishop had rationalized the murders even before they had been committed. "A trigger activated the killing," says Walter. "He was ready, waiting for the opportunity, and the trigger came." Walter describes Bishop as a narcissist who operated at the level of image. That is why he married and had children. Bishop did what was professionally appropriate, but he did not form any real bonds with his family. Walter explains that Bishop's "perfect image" was shattered when he lost the State Department promotion. "He sees how well his family is doing and they become a threat to him," Walter said. "Now they are no longer any use to him. He can cash out. He gets rid of them, leaves a trail and then says, ‘Come catch me you fool!' He becomes a hero to himself for life. Now he has a purpose again."

Today, Bishop continues to be seen in the same cities he visited while in the foreign service: Stockholm and Sorrento, Italy. The most recent sighting was in Basel, Switzerland, in September 1994. A woman who was a member of Bishop's tennis club and knew the family well, saw Bishop on a train that was parallel to the one she and her husband had boarded. She says that when he saw her and her husband, Bishop hid behind a newspaper and as his train pulled away, Bishop lifted both hands in a gesture of relief. Unfortunately authorities unable to locate Bishop when the sightings were reported.

Investigators on this case believe that Bishop is living a new life overseas. Because he is not one to settle, Bishop, now in his early sixties, has probably acquired a very good job and an "ideal" family who knows nothing about his past. Police believe that Bishop now has salt and pepper hair and may be wearing a goatee or a beard and mustache. Bishop speaks fluent English, Spanish, French, Serbo-Croatian and Italian. He enjoys sports, especially tennis, swimming, camping, fishing, skiing. Bishop also enjoys motorcycle riding and flying.

However, Bob Keefer, the Montgomery County Police Department's now-retired chief deputy, believes that a "mystery woman" in North Carolina is the key to closing the case. In a letter to Bishop dated March 15, 1976, federal prison inmate Ken Bankston wrote, "Yes I am most sure she is in the North Carolina State penitentiary." The letter mentions an area known as Creswell — just four miles from the grave site. Keefer believes that the "she" in Bankston's letter is the accomplice who spirited Bishop away from the remote area. According to Keefer, the female accomplice probably drove Bishop away from his abandoned station wagon in the Smoky Mountains. Though he was in good physical condition, Bishop would have to be a survivalist to escape from the densely wooded and mountainous area on foot. Bankston died in prison shortly after the letter was mailed, and a check of all female inmates released by the state around the time of the murders turned up nothing. "Someone in North Carolina has the information we need," Keefer said. "The woman is the key. If we can find her, everything will fall into place."

Those left behind

Regardless of whether Bishop acted alone or what his motives were, the emotional fallout was far-reaching and enduring, as evidenced by comments from Brad III's classmates at the then-Thomas W. Pyle Junior High School in Bethesda. Brad was in the ninth grade when he was killed. He had only been at Pyle a little more than a year, enrolling after his family returned from a State Department stint in Botswana, South Africa. Former classmates said the teenager quickly made a place for himself. His sunny personality, good looks and sophistication from having spent most of his life overseas gave Bishop entry to the "in-crowd" without becoming part of the "in-crowd" cliques, classmates said.

"He was my boyfriend in the eighth grade," said Joanne Fitzgerald Bryant of Rockville. "He had a grace and worldliness about him. I remember him talking about Botswana and going on safari. It was exciting. In eighth grade, you're just starting to begin talking to boys. I was madly in love with him."
Bryant said Brad's home life appeared solid. She took gymnastics with him after school and said his mother and grandmother, who lived with the family, often came to watch. Family ski trips were frequent and Brad's father often brought his son to school, Bryant said. "They were very nice," she said.

The boy's murder and that fact that his father allegedly committed it traumatized the school and left lasting scars, Bryant said. "[We] were in denial when it was pointing to the father," Bryant said. "Everyone was like, 'No way. How could that be?' For a 15-year-old to process, this is so difficult. It was so brutal. I had nightmares for two years.. We'd drive by his house and just sit there and look at it. I can get choked up now."

Scott Matejik of Bethesda was in Bishop's science class when the killings occurred. "I will never forget ... when the principal and vice principal walked down the hall and cleaned out his locker," Matejik said. "That memory of finality and death really made an impression that day and I can always picture that moment in time."

Bishop's murder was not the only tragedy to befall Pyle that year. Another ninth-grader died a few months earlier, the victim of a drunk driver. After Bishop's death, the school organized a fund-raiser to buy memorial plaques for both of the students.

The plaques, which today adorn a hallway wall near Pyle's main entrance, were initially placed in the school's courtyard, recalled Gary Clarke, a social studies teacher who is now an instructor at St. Albans School for Boys in Washington, D.C. "We were shell-shocked. It was so tragic. I remember thinking it was almost like a cemetery out there," Clarke said.

Joyce Rinehart, at the time Pyle's attendance secretary, was one of the first at the school to realize something awful had happened to the attractive, well-mannered student who she recalled as being the image of his father. Brad had not come to school for several days, and his family had been uncharacteristically silent about the absences. When Rinehart called the home, a detective answered. "I asked could he give any information and he said no. I immediately [went to the office] and said there's something drastically wrong at the Bishop house. It was on the news that night," Rinehart said.

Rinehart, who today works in the office of Bannockburn Elementary School in Bethesda, said she saw the Bishops regularly because the father frequently brought his son to school. "You just couldn't believe that the father would do this. You never think of someone taking someone's life. It was such a shock, but I guess we had no idea who he really was and what he was really capeable of," Rinehart said. She's also convinced she could spot him, even after all this time. "He's very distinctive looking, a handsome gentleman. His manners are impeccable," Rinehart said.


The yearbook photo of William Bradford Bishop III.

Last edited by dallascowboyfan : 12-14-2009 at 10:09 PM.
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Old 09-13-2009, 01:00 PM   #18
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Hey, thanks SO much for posting this article. This is what this forum is all about.... I love that I can come here and know that I will find out more info on a case b/c of other posters. Thanks so much... very interesting article... Am going to be commenting on it shortly.
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Old 09-13-2009, 01:15 PM   #19
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Very cool article! I had no idea that he was spotted with a female in North Carolina. That really adds to the possibility that he did not die of exposure or commit suicide in the woods. Plus, the more I think about it (and from what the article said), most narcissists don't kill themselves because they think they are wonderful and needed by the world. It sounds like all investigators feel he is living in Europe with a family.

Interesting that he appeared to "like his dog more than his children." He reminds me, in many ways, of Jeff MacDonald. It's amazing when you have these cases about sociopathic men who truly appear to have everything but only think about themselves. Like MacDonald, I bet Bishop has no remorse whatsoever for what he did. Man, it would be amazing if this case was solved.
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Old 09-19-2009, 10:31 PM   #20
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He is/was vicious to the highest degree to have actually murdered his family. Nothing can justify what he did, no matter how one attempts analyze his state of mind at the time.
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Old 09-24-2009, 09:45 AM   #21
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Holy cow. What kind of house did Bishop buy with that $30,000 down payment from his mom? Can you imagine a house in 1976 where $30,000 is just the down payment?

My parents bought a 750 sq ft, 2 bdm house in 1969 for $15,000. Ten years later (1979), my grandmother built a huge house on over 30 acres for about $50,000. It had custom everything, including two stone fireplaces built with rocks taken from the property, and a full finished walkout basement.

I can't stand control freaks and status conscious nuts like this Bishop guy. Look at all the great things he had in life. He had an ivy league education, traveled the world extensively, had a great job that allowed him to have many luxuries, had a wife and three perfect kids, had a mom who GAVE him $30,000 (which I can't get over, cuz even today, that's a huge sum of money), and he was basically set for life. He should have thanked God for his happy healthy family, his unbelievable financial security, and just left it the heck alone.

I think Brad would be in his 70s now. I wonder if there will ever be justice.
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Old 09-24-2009, 09:53 AM   #22
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Somewhere along the threads regarding bishop, someone asked if he had extended family. I'm reading his case file at amw.com and it says he is an only child who would have no ties to the US once his immediate family was killed.

Also, the same artist who did that extremely accurate John List bust (that ended up causing his capture) was commissioned to do an age progessed Brad Bishop bust. A photo of it is on the amw site.
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Old 09-25-2009, 04:02 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TracyLynnS
Also, the same artist who did that extremely accurate John List bust (that ended up causing his capture) was commissioned to do an age progessed Brad Bishop bust. A photo of it is on the amw site.

Is it just me, or does that bust of Bishop look like Charles Manson?
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Old 09-25-2009, 04:24 AM   #24
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Hmm, I do not know about this one. To me, it is certain Bishop murdered his family. However I come to question why this female acquaintance is brought up all of these years later? There is something about that, that does not seem right. It seems AMW is once again distracting from the real issues. The fact of the matter is, this guy killed his family and if he is alive we need to find him. It is not about how his personality was or how nice of a house he lived in, both of these are counter productive and distract from the main point, which is the guy killed his family and we need to find him.
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Old 09-25-2009, 08:41 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apostapler
Is it just me, or does that bust of Bishop look like Charles Manson?

I just took another look at it, and yep, it sure looks a lot like ole Charlie.
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Old 09-26-2009, 12:29 PM   #26
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An interesting fact about Brad Bishop that I think gets lost is that he served in the military for a time.

This could also explain not only why he went crazy but why he hasn't been found yet.

Anyone know in what capacity he served or what branch? Did he serve in Vietnam?
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Old 09-26-2009, 02:14 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mastermind
An interesting fact about Brad Bishop that I think gets lost is that he served in the military for a time.

This could also explain not only why he went crazy but why he hasn't been found yet.

Anyone know in what capacity he served or what branch? Did he serve in Vietnam?

I remember reading that the bulk of Bishop's time in the military, which he entered in 1959 and left after a four-year stint, was spent in Europe (meaning he missed official U.S. involvement in Vietnam by a year or two). He was in the Army and served as a Military Intelligence officer.

Being an Army MI officer myself, I can at least attest that it's a very competitive branch and can be pretty stressful depending on one's assignment. One's required to hold a Top Secret clearance, which requires an extensive background investigation, and perhaps in Bishop's day, extensive psychological testing.
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Old 09-27-2009, 11:09 AM   #28
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Quote:
I remember reading that the bulk of Bishop's time in the military, which he entered in 1959 and left after a four-year stint, was spent in Europe (meaning he missed official U.S. involvement in Vietnam by a year or two). He was in the Army and served as a Military Intelligence officer.

Military Intelligence. That explains why he is able to remain undetected. he probably still knew all the perfect hiding places and still has friends involved with intelligence work that could help him.
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Old 10-07-2009, 09:32 PM   #29
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If he were planning this, even in fantasies, for a while, before he finally murdered his family---
could he have made connections through his work not necessarily USA friendly? Could he have offered his services, or information, to another country? That country might have supplied the means for him to begin again in another place, maybe even someone to shepherd him from the Carolina forest out of the States. A country that would shelter him---until it didn't need him anymore.
Alternately, it has been enough years that he may have started another family---have these children come of age? Are there similar events overseas, where a father disappears after the annihilation of those close to him? Eradication worked once for him, why not again?
If he had committed a single terrible crime of passion, murdered his wife in an argument, for example: he would never have to do it again. But WBB annihilated, brutally, methodically, coldly, everyone close to him (except his dog) so he could hit the 'reset' button. A demonic do-over to feed his own ego. Why wouldn't he have used this again?
If he is still alive, that is. Although I'd bet he is.
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Old 10-07-2009, 11:26 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lighthousekeeper
If he were planning this, even in fantasies, for a while, before he finally murdered his family---
could he have made connections through his work not necessarily USA friendly? Could he have offered his services, or information, to another country? That country might have supplied the means for him to begin again in another place, maybe even someone to shepherd him from the Carolina forest out of the States. A country that would shelter him---until it didn't need him anymore.
Alternately, it has been enough years that he may have started another family---have these children come of age? Are there similar events overseas, where a father disappears after the annihilation of those close to him? Eradication worked once for him, why not again?
If he had committed a single terrible crime of passion, murdered his wife in an argument, for example: he would never have to do it again. But WBB annihilated, brutally, methodically, coldly, everyone close to him (except his dog) so he could hit the 'reset' button. A demonic do-over to feed his own ego. Why wouldn't he have used this again?
If he is still alive, that is. Although I'd bet he is.


There has been discussion of whether or not he defected. Personally, I think it's a distinct possibility. That could explain why he was traveling around Europe (per the sightings). I think it is equally possible that he just settled into the countryside somewhere in Europe with a new identity.
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