I had my doubts before about the surveillance video of the McStays approaching the turnstile to cross over into Tijuana, Mexico. But now I have developed my own photo of the family in silhouette, and am more convinced than ever that this is indeed the McStays. The figure of Summer with her long black hair is the most recognizable.
The investigation into the February 4th disappearance of the McStay family is morphing in the direction of a flight into Mexico, and probably deliberately. This only muddies the waters all the more. My theory is that with their fleeing into Mexico by choice, they must have been trying to avoid someone. They left behind a beautiful brand new home and a very happy existence. Or so it would appear on the surface?
I am going to back up here and spell out a handful of new facts that cast this case in a different light. The best reporting is coming from the Union-Tribune in San Diego and specifically from staff writer Leslie Berestein. Leslie seems to have the inside scoop with the McStay family and with the San Diego Sheriff`s Department, who is oh so selective in what clues they`ll disclose to the public.
A primary new clue is that the McStay`s were researching passport requirements for traveling to Mexico with children. These inquiries were found on their computer and were made on Jan. 27 and Jan. 28; they visited the site About.com. However, it doesn`t look as if they followed through with obtaining the proper legal documents.
Joseph was the only one who had a valid passport. Summer`s had expired and the youngest son`s birth certificate, required for reentry into the United States, was left with a grandmother. Therefore, I believe that a sudden unexpected event or development (a third party intervention) hastened their plans to depart Fallbrook on February 4th. (Union-Tribune-FBI joins search for McStays by Leslie Berestein-Friday, April 2, 2010)
A new fact that I find significant is that a neighbor`s security camera shows a vehicle backing out of the McStay`s driveway at exactly 7:47 P.M. on Feb. 4th. Why were the family of four leaving so late on their trip? Some event, perhaps a phone call, must have triggered an impetus to move up the clock of departure?
Why leave so late for Mexico? This makes no sense. And remember, it would be four more days until their car was towed from a strip mall parking lot in San Ysidro. Where were they during this time and what were they doing for those four days?
The last phone call made was by Joseph McStay, on his cell phone at to his business partner. The call was for only one minute and was made one hour after their departure for an unknown destination. After this time the cell phones go dead. Also, bank activity completely drops off the earth.
Could they have been living on cash alone? They would have to. A sizeable withdrawal of cold cash is required to make this fit. Yet the police haven`t mentioned any cash withdrawal such as this? This is the key to a fundamental hypothesis of mine, that I will postulate for you shortly.
What I find most odd is why hasn`t the business partner come out with a statement to the press? This partner of Joseph in his home fountain business has not even given his name. Is he hiding something? What did he discuss with Joseph in this last one minute phone conversation? If he has nothing to hide, why not just come out with a statement to the press? Perhaps he has a piece of information that could unravel this unsolved mystery?
Tim Miller of Texas Equusearch was a guest on Jane-Velez Mitchell on Wednesday, March 31st. When Tim looked over the McStay house, he observed that it appeared that many clothes were missing. This implies that the family packed these belongings with the idea of leaving on a planned trip. Maybe a trip of some length, I might add. There were only high heels for Summer, and where were Joseph`s shoes and shirts? Packed in luggage, I would think.
And what about the notion that they staged their disappearance? What`s for sure, is that they left in haste! Food was left out. And Summer forgot her prescription sunglasses! The dogs were left without food and water (most puzzling). Trays of paint and rollers were abandoned, as if some event altered Summer`s flow of work, her painting of the kitchen, a dramatic gear shift. A statement of Summer`s friend for ten years, Jesi Silveria, reinforces my theory of a rapid change in plans.
I was one of the last people speaking to her and for three days straight it was all about moving in and setting in. There was no mention about hesitancy or challenges she was having. If she had any stress or strain or worry you could have heard it in her voice. It just doesn`t make sense to anyone who personally knows them. "
A life altering development occurred on February 4th. This event was reinforced by previous happenings, however. This is cause and effect here. Think of when you shoot a pool ball with a cue stick. The ball hits other balls and they move to a new location on the pool table. In turn, this affects the player`s strategy on his next shot. The "McStay Plan` was a work in progress. It shifted with the sifting sands of fate.
Testimony from Susan Blake, Joseph`s brother, adds to my belief that something BIG went down on February 4th. Susan Blake felt as if something was out of place when she spoke to her son on that day. Joe told me he wasn`t feeling good that day. His equilibrium wasn`t right and I felt something was wrong. " I think that Joe knew it was time to get away. Not doing so would be a more negative decision for his family.
I`m going to lay out my theory, so don`t scoff at me for idle speculation. I`m sure that the FBI is doing that very thing even as I type these words. But here goes nothing. A favorite movie of mine, 1998`s A Simple Plan, directed by Sam Raimi, is my model for what happened to the McStays. In the film Hank Mitchell, his brother Jacob, and a friend Lou stumble upon a downed airplane. They find a dead man inside the crash and $4.4 million dollars in cash, stashed in cargo bags.
The brothers and the friend devise a "simple plan` to lay low and to keep the money as a sort of retirement account for their old age. This is where the irony comes in, this is anything but a "simple plan` as a rapid sequence of events put a tire iron in the spokes of a well-oiled scheme. In this parallel the McStays must have discovered some money that they weren`t intended to have. I think it was a sum of more than a million dollars. This cash may have been hidden in one of the fountains that Joseph purchased from Mexico. Narco-traffickers may have been attempting to launder vast amounts of drug money by way of these fountain craftsmen on the other side of the border. The McStays were not suppose to be aware of this scheme.
As such their men on the American side would retrieve this money and smuggle it away to another safehouse. But Joseph accidentally discovered this money when he was working on one of these fountains. The amount was so great, that he decided to keep it after discussing the situation with Summer. In the film Bill Paxton does something similar with Bridgett Fonda. The money pushes their button. This is where a "simple plan` comes into play.
And so this would explain why the bank accounts suddenly went dead. The McStays would operate strictly on a cash-only-basis, going forward. They figured that could hide out in Mexico undetected, maybe in some simple village up in the mountains, away from civilization. And their cash would stretch out as far as the eye can see.
Fitting in with my theory, the McStays had to hide out in the states from the 4th to the 8th. They didn`t want to cross over into Mexico too rapidly, lest the traffickers might surprise them at the crossing. Why leave the white Isuzu Trooper in San Ysidro? Because the Bad Men knew of the vehicle from the news, so they had to get rid of it. And what about the last call to the business partner?
This is why I think he knew. He may have tipped off the McStays that "they` were looking for them. This would also explain why he won`t give his name or provide the media with a statement of some kind. Also, I believe the police know of his involvement and are providing him with a makeshift "witness protection program.` This would also explain why it took so long to report the disappearance to the authorities. Enough time was allowed for the McStays to hide away in the remotest regions of Mexico.
And then you might wonder why the McStays didn`t just return the money to these traffickers? The reason why is this wasn`t even an option! Even if they did return the money, they would still be killed to silence them. This is how these ruthless criminals operate, in say, Ciudad Juarez. The McStays had no choice but to flee with the money in tow. They had but one choice-a permanent departure from their once beautiful life.
My theory of what might have happened to the McStays is the only one that fits all the known facts we that we have at our disposal. Today Michael McStay is distributing fliers down on the border. He intends to go to Mexico very soon, and has already gotten his passport. And now the FBI is taking a stake in this case.
This is further support for my theory. I don`t believe they would get involved if they didn`t believe their case had taken on wider parameters. As such maybe it`s more international in scope, involving U.S. citizens and narco-traffickers, who operate without impunity on both sides of the borders.
You may think I`m spinning cotton candy here, but how can one juxtapose these disjointed facts into a cogent theorem that fits for their sudden disappearance? My theory works. And don`t you look upon me as if I`m lingering on the Dark Side (I don`t live in a Gingerbread House)!
I do believe that they are still alive! I`m an optimist. Two possible sightings have already been reported. The case may break tomorrow or it may remain unsolved. Words of Lt. Dennis Brugos best characterizes the McStay case: I`ve never seen anything like this in over 35 years of experience in the business. "
Comment on this story, by emailing Judyth Piazza at email@example.com join the SOP friend network with your Google, Yahoo, AOL, MSN or one ID account located on the front page of http://www.thesop.org
Any opinions expressed on this website are those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect those of The Student Operated Press