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Old 01-06-2019, 03:45 AM   #31
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I think we can all agree that Dale died that night & likely inside the building even if we cannot be sure if he was or wasn't in on it.
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Old 01-17-2019, 01:09 PM   #32
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I think we can all agree that Dale died that night & likely inside the building even if we cannot be sure if he was or wasn't in on it.
I'm with you, although I think there is a certain number of people who believe Dale walked away from everything after the plutonium heist.

I have a hard time believing that he just walked from his family for so many years without so much as a word. I'll always believe he was innocent and literally on shift at the wrong time, but I think others have made good arguments for how/why Dale may have been involved.
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Old 09-10-2020, 12:49 AM   #33
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Just saw the UM segment on DK & the missing platinum, back in September 1987. Wow - fascinating case, especially given that DK has never been found & it's still unclear what happened.

My gut feeling is that DK was not involved in the heist & did not disappear because of any type of involvement. Not because I don't think he wouldn't have been capable of such a thing, since if enough money is involved & if someone is desperate enough - almost anyone is capable. But, I agree he probably wasn't involved because of the family members he left behind. In the segment we saw, his at-the-time living relatives included: An elderly mother, 6?! children (one of which was a teenage boy still living with him), and two grandchildren were also mentioned. There was no indication he didn't get along with his family (though I know the family probably wouldn't have discussed this on TV if that was the case). I.e., it's evident that he did have family who cared for him & also probably some of them depended on him. So, for him to just commit this crime & split without explanation just doesn't make sense to me.

Also strange is the fact that he brought his lunch/dinner to work, and didn't eat any of it - it was untouched (his lunch box was found in the cafeteria). Why bother bringing this - and also leaving it behind - if he was involved in the crime?!

I do suspect that he was eliminated by the criminals, and then disposed of at another location.

Hopefully this case will eventually get solved & DK's family will get closure. But, at this point I suspect that will never happen.

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It doesn't make sense that Kerstetter committed the robbery then disappeared. He had lived his whole life in the community, his entire family was there, all of his social supports. He's going to leave all that and disappear for the rest of his life for the platinum? Yes, he may have been a marginal employee and yes he had financial problems, but how many people fit that profile?

I believe someone he may have known committed the robbery and then killed him because Kerstetter knew their identity.
Yes, it's possible he knew the criminals who committed the robbery - but I don't think he was in on it.

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Old 09-10-2020, 04:13 PM   #34
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One item I always thought was interesting concerns the fact that a new security person was on the job the day Dale disappeared. Of course, this could be coincidental and a random occurrence but considering what happened that day I have to wonder if this new hire (who likely may have not known what to do) may have been somehow involved in the events (either knowingly or not).

Could be conjecture for sure, but I always thought that was interesting.
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Old 09-10-2020, 10:09 PM   #35
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I believe it was an inside job. People working at the plant knew of the looming shutdown and sale of the plant. It was widely known that the piping was not being used for production.And I think Dale knew the people pulling off the heist due to his smile on the camera. I think Dale was killed and disposed of in a desolate area.

Wouldn't Dale cover the cameras, turn them off or sabotage them to do this heist?

Also, he could have robbed Corning blind by nipping a small amount here and there. The plant left its doors and gates wide open day and night.

I live near a plant which manufactures concrete pipes. They never bother closing the gates save for Xmas day. The entrance for trucks leads to a covered area where valuable tools and machinery are kept. It's too much of a burden to close their gate. Someday (or night) a pickup is going to drive in and help themselves. They just assume that NOBODY is going to enter their plant to steal.
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Old 09-10-2020, 10:28 PM   #36
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To add to my above post, I find it extremely unlikely that DK (@ 50 years old) would leave the area he had pretty much lived in his whole life & "start over" somewhere else - with the limited amount of $ he would presumably make from the platinum. This wouldn't have been nearly enough $ for him to move somewhere else & "start over", even if he didn't have to split this with 1 (or more) others.

I.e., even if you believe that DK would have left his entire family behind & never speak to them again (which I don't believe), it just wasn't feasible that he would be making much money from this heist. It wasn't like he was making off with millions of dollars here; quite the opposite.

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Old 11-09-2020, 11:15 AM   #37
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You have to break it down, Lets say that he did infact play a part in all this, then he already had at least one partner, the guy who you see on the CCTV video, maybe there was somebody else too, UM estimates that the platinum was worth 250,000, so you split it 2 or 3 ways? is that enough to go on the run for the rest of your life? is it worth never seeing your kids again for? based on what we see in the segment they loved him very much. another thing people point at are his "debts", but the thing is they weren't exactly debts, he was just paying off his home and his truck.

Another thing, if Dale wanted to play some part in this, why not have the guy in the video tie him up?, have him take the platinum, sell it, and later give him his share? i'm using my logic, but why risk getting caught, prison, not seeing your kids ever again for a relatively small amount of money that wouldn't set you up for life?

I find it strange that company just happened to be going thru a very bad period when all this happened, they had let people go, dale himself had been forced to take a lower paying job as a security guard. they seem to happy to pin it all on him, calling him a "marginal employee" yet he worked there for over 30 years and saved lives by acting quickly during an accident at the plant. and later the plant went out of business.

For me what he would lose far outweighs what he would gain.
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Old 11-09-2020, 12:20 PM   #38
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You have to break it down, Lets say that he did infact play a part in all this, then he already had at least one partner, the guy who you see on the CCTV video, maybe there was somebody else too, UM estimates that the platinum was worth 250,000, so you split it 2 or 3 ways? is that enough to go on the run for the rest of your life? is it worth never seeing your kids again for? based on what we see in the segment they loved him very much. another thing people point at are his "debts", but the thing is they weren't exactly debts, he was just paying off his home and his truck.

Another thing, if Dale wanted to play some part in this, why not have the guy in the video tie him up?, have him take the platinum, sell it, and later give him his share? i'm using my logic, but why risk getting caught, prison, not seeing your kids ever again for a relatively small amount of money that wouldn't set you up for life?

I find it strange that company just happened to be going thru a very bad period when all this happened, they had let people go, dale himself had been forced to take a lower paying job as a security guard. they seem to happy to pin it all on him, calling him a "marginal employee" yet he worked there for over 30 years and saved lives by acting quickly during an accident at the plant. and later the plant went out of business.

For me what he would lose far outweighs what he would gain.
Yep, we have to remember that 250 grand in 1987 is a lot more in today's money. People have killed others for 100 dollars or less. Just because his kids loved him very much doesn't mean he felt the same way about them-we have no idea what he was planning or what his state of mind was-he was a 50 year old man forced to take a lower paid job, knew he would be losing even that soon & had debts of 30-40k.
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Old 11-09-2020, 02:04 PM   #39
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Yep, we have to remember that 250 grand in 1987 is a lot more in today's money. People have killed others for 100 dollars or less. Just because his kids loved him very much doesn't mean he felt the same way about them-we have no idea what he was planning or what his state of mind was-he was a 50 year old man forced to take a lower paid job, knew he would be losing even that soon & had debts of 30-40k.

He didn't have debts, theres a big difference between a mortgage to pay for your home and having debts. having debts is when you run up debt on a credit card, paying installments monthly on your truck and on your home isn't debt.

As for being forced to take a lower paying job, well yeah, but he was 6 months off retirement and a good pension based on over 30 years work for this company, his family was financially stable and even say on unsolved mysteries that they would have taken care of him. 6 months off a decent pension and a financially secure family who loves him hardly screams desperation.

theres too much "maybe this, maybe that" and really little realism, i think he could have been tired of his life, planned something like this and vanished. it's not a crazy theory, but taking platinum, which you have to sell to someone, split the money with at least one other person, leaving your entire family, going on the run, having to change your identity, 6 months off getting a pension naaaa, it's not likely.


You say that people have killed someone for a 100 bucks, of course, but thats never planned, thats someone drug addict needing a fix and getting desperate., thats not planned, and dale would have had to plan this, and like i say, i think he would have lost more than he would have gained doing this.
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Old 11-09-2020, 02:50 PM   #40
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The son in this case does not seem to be totally on the up-and-up, but I think the fact that Kerstetter 1) did not take his cigarettes and left his truck behind and 2) was stealing an item that it would be hard to imagine he would have had the connections and the knowledge to unload on the blackmarket make it unlikely that he was involved. However, I do think he knew the person doing it --- which is probably why he was killed (I believe he was murdered and dumped the night this happened many years ago). I think it is quite probable that Dale himself, drunk at a bar or something one night, bragged about how much valuable stuff was at the plant where he worked, if only someone had the cajones to steal it. Someone he knew or was at least acquainted with took him up on the challenge, and offed Dale in the process.
When I first saw this as a kid, I believed him totally innocent or guilty with a plan to return when the statute of limitations ran out.

But he hasn't returned. Watching this segment more than once as an adult, I think it's obvious he's no longer with us. For a while, I figured that he participated to the point he would act like he was attacked and be the inside man. Then he was killed to keep his share of the profits.

The last few years or so, thanks to CD's blog, it's more clear that he's innocent. My theory is similar to what was posted above. Bradford is a small town. Dale was annoyed that his job and pay were cut. I wouldn't be surprised if it was a night at a local bar and a drunken Dale complained about the plant, mentioning all the platinum in the plant. Someone, or some people, overheard and plotted to take it themselves or recruited others to do the robbery.

My guess is Dale was oblivious to what he said or that because Bradford was such a small town that no one he knew would try something like burglarize the plant. Of course, someone did and through something they did or said, made Dale recognize at least one of the robbers. With that, he was killed to keep him quiet and his body was the lump that was wheeled out of the factory and taken to a place where no one would find him.

I wish for his kids' sake that he did commit the crime and just hid out until the SOL ran out (7 years I believe) but I'm about 99% sure he's no longer with us.
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Old 11-09-2020, 02:55 PM   #41
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Although anything is possible, I'd almost go as far as to say its silly to think Dale is anything but dead. He was likely murdered the night of the theft. Absolutely no reason for him not to have returned to his family once the statute of limitations was gone, or at least contact them.

I have to figure also the masked man was either a current or former employee who had some kind of connection to the plant as well. Random thieves don't just go into plants like that to steal platinum, your average thieves wouldn't know what to do with it. He had to have some idea what he was doing and where it was. That narrows down the list of suspects so I'm somewhat surprised this was never solved. The fact that he bothered to wear the mask suggests either that he knew their were security cameras in the plant, or he feared identification by whoever was on guard, suggesting that he may have even knew Dale.

I'm curious though whether or not he planned to murder Dale. My guess is he didn't, thieves will put getting richer before murder, and typically don't want to stir up any more of a police investigation than they have to. I could see two scenarios: Dale may have at some point tried to get the upper hand on the assailant and was killed as a result, or perhaps the suspect may have feared Dale recognized his voice or suspected who he was given that he almost had to be a former or current employee of the plant and killed him to be on the safe side. He could have even known it was Dale on duty that night, no way of knowing.
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Old 11-09-2020, 05:17 PM   #42
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On page 2, a poster mentioned that CrystalDawn had interviewed Dale's family. Could someone please point me in the right direction to find that interview? Thanks! ��
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Old 11-09-2020, 06:37 PM   #43
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He didn't have debts, theres a big difference between a mortgage to pay for your home and having debts. having debts is when you run up debt on a credit card, paying installments monthly on your truck and on your home isn't debt.

As for being forced to take a lower paying job, well yeah, but he was 6 months off retirement and a good pension based on over 30 years work for this company, his family was financially stable and even say on unsolved mysteries that they would have taken care of him. 6 months off a decent pension and a financially secure family who loves him hardly screams desperation.

You say that people have killed someone for a 100 bucks, of course, but thats never planned, thats someone drug addict needing a fix and getting desperate., thats not planned, and dale would have had to plan this, and like i say, i think he would have lost more than he would have gained doing this.
Well put, well said. DK was not a career criminal with nothing to lose; quite the opposite. I don't see DK as having been involved in the crime in any way:

1) He had committed his entire adult life to that one job (30 years), and was on the verge of retiring & getting a pension from said job.

2) He was a family man, and had family members who depended on him emotionally & certainly financially in some cases (his son & possibly his mother), etc.

Why would he leave all of this behind for what would have amounted to a small amount of $? And, yes - I consider the amount small - considering he would have probably had to live on this for the rest of his life. There is no way he could have skipped town & still gotten a legitimate job somewhere else - if he had been connected to the crime. He would have been looking over his shoulder for the rest of his life. Who would want to put themselves in that position, especially @ age 50?

I agree that the reason he hasn't surfaced after all this time is because he was probably killed the night of the crime. Hopefully they will find the remains at some point & give the family closure. However, as with a lot of these older cases - as more time goes on the less likely this possibility becomes.
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Old 11-10-2020, 07:42 AM   #44
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He didn't have debts, theres a big difference between a mortgage to pay for your home and having debts. having debts is when you run up debt on a credit card, paying installments monthly on your truck and on your home isn't debt.

As for being forced to take a lower paying job, well yeah, but he was 6 months off retirement and a good pension based on over 30 years work for this company, his family was financially stable and even say on unsolved mysteries that they would have taken care of him. 6 months off a decent pension and a financially secure family who loves him hardly screams desperation.

theres too much "maybe this, maybe that" and really little realism, i think he could have been tired of his life, planned something like this and vanished. it's not a crazy theory, but taking platinum, which you have to sell to someone, split the money with at least one other person, leaving your entire family, going on the run, having to change your identity, 6 months off getting a pension naaaa, it's not likely.


You say that people have killed someone for a 100 bucks, of course, but thats never planned, thats someone drug addict needing a fix and getting desperate., thats not planned, and dale would have had to plan this, and like i say, i think he would have lost more than he would have gained doing this.
"Through our investigation we determined Dale Kerstetter was approximately $30,000 to $40,000 in arrears on various payments--trailer payments, vehicle payments and, different bills which he had owed throughout the area."

6 months off retirement-at the age of 50, not 65 & with these debts, no good job prospects, no idea whether his pension from that company would be honoured or only partly, six kids, probably going through a serious mid-later life crisis.

Yes, they are usually planned-just as incompetently as somebody doing it for 10,000 dollars-the point is desperate people will do stupid stuff for relatively small sums of money, let alone an expensive precious substance.

The whole case is about maybe this or maybe that happened-nobody knows & likely never will. I was not saying this is what happened, but that it is a possibility due to his money issues, lack of job security etc. Most likely I think he wanted it to look like he had been bushwhacked & tied up, or abducted & murdered & vanish somewhere with the proceeds of the robbery, but he got used & double-crossed by his partner.
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Old 11-10-2020, 11:21 AM   #45
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crystaldawn did a great update about this in her blog about a year ago (can read about it in the other, much longer DK thread here)

I'll still hold with my opinion that the revelation that Platinum Theft had been an ongoing problem, even going back a number of years, brings up an even simpler scenario to mind--the Bradford theft was perpetrated by an organized band of thieves (or even a single thief) that was also responsible for one or more of the previous thefts that crystaldawn mentioned.

The easiest/simplest way I see it going down is this--the thief (or thieves) picked the Bradford plant as their next score. At least one person gets inside and at some point runs across Dale (probably by accident, on account of whoever it was, not knowing the plant's layout).

After accosting him, the intruder uses him to locate the platinum and perhaps load it up. Then, he's marched out of the building where I'm guessing one or more accomplices were waiting in a getaway vehicle.

I don't think Dale was killed inside the plant or on the grounds--you would think if he was, some type/trace of physical evidence pointing to that would have been discovered. I think he was loaded up with the platinum, and then as Chichester Crowe suggested, taken into the woods, shot and probably buried in a shallow grave.
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