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Nancy Grace Mysteries: The Disappearance of Prosecutor Ray Gricar

Aired January 17, 2014 - 20:00   ET


ANNOUNCER: Tonight on NANCY GRACE MYSTERIES, a prominent district attorney calls his girlfriend to say he`s taking the day off. He goes for a drive in his red Mini-Cooper but never returns. Now, in the next hour, we unlock the secrets behind his disappearance. What happened to Ray Gricar? Was it foul play, or did he just walk away from his life?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ray, I love you very much and I miss you. I want for you to come home. Please call us. We will wait for as long as we need to. For everyone else, again, if you have seen Ray, please contact the police, your local police, as quickly as you can.

I want you to know that I will wait for as long as it takes to hear from you. I miss you so much and I love you, and please call. To everyone else out there, if you have seen my father, if you could please contact the police.


NANCY GRACE, HOST: The day he went missing, Gricar, who was reputed to be a ladies` man, had taken the day off. He told his girlfriend that he was going antiquing. He was going driving a distance away from office and home, looking for antiques. And he was known to have done this before.

He told her he would not be back home to feed the dog at lunchtime or to do any of his normal activities. He was taking the day off. He was going antiquing. And he was never seen again.

Interesting. There is a credible sighting of Ray Gricar the very next day, which is a Saturday, at an antique mall in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. That`s about 55 miles from his home and from his office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Meanwhile, the search for Gricar centered in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, where his car was found outside if an antique mall. The mall owner and at least one person there say they saw Gricar inside.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And then after I looked at a variety of photographs in different forms of dress, it makes me relatively sure that he was here around noontime on Saturday.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gricar was reported missing Friday. Search crews were also back out Wednesday along the nearby Susquehanna River.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And the owner of the antique shop here in Lewisburg says police even through his credit card receipts and checked very carefully, trying to come up with any evidence of Ray Gricar`s signature and handwriting. But there again, they found nothing new. So the search continues for the missing DA.


GRACE: Ray Gricar was the elected district attorney in Centre County in Pennsylvania. That`s a very difficult position to get. And he had been the DA for several terms. That means he was responsible for all felony prosecutions within that county. And he had a staff of district attorneys working under him.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A search warrant application obtained by Channel 6 News has police looking into Gricar`s medical history. According to the document, Gricar`s girlfriend, Patty Fornicola, says in the past three weeks, Gricar had been more fatigued and has been taking naps over the lunch hour and after work, that she encouraged him to get an examination to check for possible medical or mental problems.


GRACE: He was allegedly with a tall, attractive female brunette. There was no surveillance. Nothing`s been caught on camera. And there was no expenditure there, like on a credit card or an ATM withdrawal, within the antique mall that would prove that sighting. However, he had a very distinctive car. It was a red and white Mini-Cooper. And his red and white Mini-Cooper was found there in Lewisburg. Now, to me, that corroborates the sighting.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Some of the same divers that searched the Susquehanna River in Lewisburg back in April were at it again Saturday and Sunday, looking for the hard drive to Ray Gricar`s laptop computer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s a better indication that he had it with him, but we go back to, again, why did he have it with him? Was there something he was working on? Did somebody force him to bring it with him? Or did he meet somebody and things went bad on something he was working on, and they did something with Ray and they took the laptop because they felt there was evidence with it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because it was covered and filled with river sediment, investigators believe the laptop was tossed into the water around the same time Gricar went missing. It stayed there until Saturday morning, when two fishermen saw the laptop and pulled it out with a net. They noticed a sticker that says "Property of Centre County" and hard heard about the Gricar search, so they took it right to the state police. Investigators say any fingerprints were probably washed away. How did divers miss the computer when they searched this same spot three-and-a-half months ago? They tell us this spring, the river was faster and deeper.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because of the conditions, I think the chance of us finding any of them small items would have been null and void. We were just looking for Ray.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Investigators don`t think the hard drive fell out because the computer wasn`t damaged. Instead, they suspect someone took it out, possibly Gricar to hide his plans to disappear, or someone who was covering their tracks after harming the DA.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They pulled out a little jewelry box they found. They found some money, you know, a couple coins, and they were finding bottle caps and cans and stuff. I mean, the clarity was really good, and you know, we`re really confident that Ray`s body is not in that portion of the river.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To spend two days diving in there and to not come up with anything other than bottle caps and trash -- it is frustrating.


GRACE: We know, A, he`s a reputed ladies` man. B, he wanted to go antiquing alone? I don`t buy that. C, he left his girlfriend behind to go antiquing. I think that he was at that antique mall in Lewisburg. I think he was with another woman, a tall, attractive brunette.

What happened after that, I don`t know what to think.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`ve got a missing persons report, so I`ve got to look at everything from foul play to he left by himself. Is there a medical issue or is there a mental health issue? Everything`s being looked at. Everything`s being taken into account. We cannot rule out anything at this point.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None of those issues are more predominant than any others at this point (INAUDIBLE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At this point...

PATTY FORNICOLA, GRICAR`S GIRLFRIEND: My name is Patty Fornicola, and this is Ray`s daughter, Lara. The spelling is L-A-R-A. We, the family, are continuing to treat this as a missing person`s case. We would greatly appreciate if the media would continue to do the same. There was a lot of speculation about what has occurred, but we have no conclusive evidence to confirm any of those scenarios. We appeal to anyone who may have seen Ray or has information about his disappearance, please contact the police. Thank you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would think that they would...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Centre County DA Ray Gricar, last heard from Friday, declared missing Saturday, and Sunday, the investigation takes police to Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, Gricar`s car discovered in this parking lot across the street from antique shops about 50 miles from Centre County.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There was another search involving the aviation until out of Montorsville (ph) down in the Lewisburg area along the river area. Police came up negative, no signs of anything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Police Sunday also talked to people inside the Lewisburg shops near where the car was found, but no help there, either.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The couple people we did talk to inside today did not remember seeing Mr. Gricar over the weekend while the store was open.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The car Gricar was in, after being recovered, was searched and then released by police. They say at this point, there`s still no indication of any foul play in the disappearance of Centre County`s district attorney.


GRACE: Some of the strongest evidence we have to find Ray Gricar is that red and white Mini-Cooper. As I told you, it was found there in Lewisburg, where the antique mall was, where there was this alleged sighting of him and a tall, attractive, brunette female.

This I what else we know about his car. We know that in his car was his cell phone, so he left his cell phone behind. Missing, his keys, his sunglasses and his wallet. He had those three things with him.

Another interesting note about his car. Gricar was a non-smoker, but on the passenger`s side floorboard, where there is typically carpet or a plastic mat, police found cigarette ash, and the car smelled as if somebody had been smoking in there. Too bad they didn`t find a cigarette butt because they could have gotten DNA off of it.

Nearby where the car was parked, there was an antique store that he had frequented in the past, so this is one of his known haunts. Of course, tracking dogs were brought in. They confirmed that Gricar, of course, had been in his car, but they also confirmed or suggested something else very, very suspicious. Their behavior suggests that Gricar then got into another car.

Typically, when dogs make that suggestion, they follow the scent to a certain spot, and then they immediately quit, and it`s, for instance, at a road or a driveway or a parking deck. That would suggest Gricar got out of his car and into the car of this tall, attractive brunette.


GRACE: Here is another interesting point regarding Ray Gricar. In July -- now, he goes missing in April. April, May, June, July -- four months later, uncovered in the Susquehanna River, which is just a few miles from Lewisburg, where he was antiquing, we think, police dredge and they find his county-issued PC, his personal computer. That was a big find.

Now, here`s the bad part. Whoever had thrown that computer into the Susquehanna had taken out the hard drive. It took them three more months to find the hard drive. It was nearby, but it had been in the mud and the muck and the water for so long, it could not be rehabilitated for any probative or evidentiary use. They could not save the hard drive or the computer.

They learned nothing from it except the clue, the behavioral evidence that somebody thought to take the hard drive out of the computer, throw the computer that way and the hard drive that way. Why?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ray Gricar had everything to live for. He was about to retire, ending 20 years as district attorney for Centre County. He had a daughter, Lara, he simply adored, and a new love of his life, his girlfriend, Patty. They were looking forward to spending the rest of their life together.

All of that ended when Gricar vanished on April 15th, 2005. He took a rare day off and went for a ride to Lewisburg, to a favorite antique shop. His Mini-Cooper, his pride and joy, was found near that shop.

Gricar was never seen again. A massive search turned up nothing. Then in July 2005, his laptop, minus the hard drive, was found in the Susquehanna River in Lewisburg. Several months later, that hard drive was also found near that river. Neither could provide a clue as to Gricar`s fate.

Investigators have been looking into three main possibilities as to why Gricar disappeared. Did he simply walk away? Did he have a secret life? Was it suicide? Did he end his own life? And of course, number three, was he kidnapped and murdered? Was he the victim of foul play? In the absence of any body, living or dead, all three remain viable possibilities.

I talked with prominent Centre County defense lawyer Bruce Manchester. He knew Gricar 25 years and saw him just days before he vanished.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And he was just ebullient. He was just very happy. He was a very good state of mind. And that`s the last time I saw him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Manchester believes Gricar was murdered.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He dealt in some high-level drug crimes, and he was a very proactive prosecutor and he made a lot of defendants very upset.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But there are many people in this tiny community of Bellefonte who think Gricar planned his own disappearance. We stopped by the Diamond Deli, a favorite lunch spot for Gricar, right across the street from the courthouse. Arlene Milton (ph) says some of her customers are convinced Gricar had a mystery life.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We just think he just walked away. And everybody thinks he`s still alive. They might have found his computer and stuff in that river, but I really feel he threw it himself in there. I don`t think anybody took them because the dogs took them to the car, and there`s where the dogs stopped.



GRACE: In addition to the sighting of Ray Gricar at that antique mall with the tall, attractive brunette woman, there have been over 300 alleged sightings of the county prosecutor -- yes, over 300 tips. To name a few, he was spotted at a Chili`s, and the person was so convinced it was Gricar, they took photos of him. And I saw the photos. It looked very much like Ray Gricar. It was not Ray Gricar. It was investigated. There was an astonishing similarity between the guy eating at the Chili`s restaurant and Gricar. No go.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In 1998, Ray Gricar declined to file charges against Jerry Sandusky, citing a lack of evidence.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When Ray Gricar went missing in 2005, what authorities immediately did was begin to look at the cases that he had prosecuted because not only was he the elected district attorney of Centre County, which covers Penn State University, but he also had prosecuted many, many people, had many convictions, had sent many people to prison. But there`s one thing they didn`t look into, and that was the name Jerry Sandusky.

GRACE: Everybody, you are seeing a live shot there at the Sandusky courthouse. It looks like all hell`s breaking loose. The courthouse is mobbed. The judge is keeping a tight rein on what`s going on in the courtroom.

We are waiting to report what has happened in the courtroom. There is a ban on us relaying to you what`s happening in the courtroom until the judge allows it. But take a look at what`s going on at the courthouse right now. We are live at the Sandusky courthouse, bringing you the case, Sandusky facing a max of 472 years behind bars.

I`m getting the verdict -- 45 guilty counts, convicted, 3 not guilty, guilty of 25 felonies, guilty of 14 first-degree felonies, 442 years max.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Nancy, I was sitting in that courtroom, and the silence was deafening because we knew there was a verdict, and we were waiting. And there was one pew in that courtroom that was empty. And some people tried to sit in it, and they moved those people out.

And in came a woman and two younger women, and they sat there. And I said to myself, Who are they? Who are they? And all of a sudden, in came victim number 6. This is the first young man in 1998, whose mother went to authorities and they didn`t believe him.

He came and he sat and he was so nervous. He was so nervous. He was breathing like this, and he was looking down. And his mother was so nervous. And as he sat there and as they started to read the verdict -- the foreperson read the verdict one after the other -- his mother just burst into tears. They were silent tears, but she was holding her son`s hand so tight.

And I think that she is so important because she is the original one that went to law enforcement. And maybe charges weren`t brought in 1998, but in 2001, when victim 1 came forward, they said, Wait a minute. We had something in `98. And that corroborated number 1. That gave him credibility. And that`s one reason why this investigation went forward, and she was in that room tonight.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did anyone know about the investigation of Jerry Sandusky? I mean, people you`ve spoken with around the community -- did anybody know that was happening?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. Not that I spoke with.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So it didn`t get out at all.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was a pretty big investigation, with a number of agencies involved.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, you know, I -- you would think that, you know, as tight-knit as this law enforcement community is in this area -- we work together hand in hand, and you know, I never heard the rumor among law enforcement officers. So personally, I had no knowledge of it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Police chief Shawn Weber (ph) tells me that he is going to allow the attorney general`s office in Pennsylvania to do their job. They have the 1998 case file that Ray Gricar chose not to prosecute on because now that is victim number 6 in the current presentment.

He fully believes the attorney general`s office looking through that case file, if they find anything that can help lead to finding Ray Gricar or what happened to him, that they will pick up that phone and call the police department immediately.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There were a number of colleagues of mine who were very adamant that they thought Ray Gricar was abducted and murdered. In fact, there was some confrontation between the district attorney at the time in Centre County and some of my colleagues and former colleagues about the investigation into Ray`s disappearance.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What happened to Ray Gricar? That`s been the big question since his mysterious disappearance back in 2005. There is a new push to solve his disappearance because Gricar was the DA in 1998. He apparently had been given a report about the accusations against Jerry Sandusky. New tonight, though, a police chief in central Pennsylvania speaking out about Gricar`s disappearance.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So much was done, but I bet the one thing you didn`t do, because you didn`t know anything about it, was that in 1998, Ray Gricar had investigated the defensive coach for Penn State University, Jerry Sandusky. You didn`t know about it, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. No. There`s probably a lot of cases that he looked into that we don`t know about.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When did you find out that Ray Gricar had been part of an investigation in `98?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Whenever the rest of the country found out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And what came into your mind when you saw this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, I knew the media would be all over it. I -- you know, it doesn`t have any effect on our investigation yet. It might not ever. So to me, it`s -- you know, it`s really no big shocking revelation to me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you don`t think there could be any clues in that...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m not saying there couldn`t...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... to help you find Ray?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, it`s possible there could be a clue, you know, two streets over from here. I have no idea. But at this time, you know, if there`s something there, it will be brought out by some other investigators.


GRACE: He was then spotted at nearby Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. A retired police officer thought he spotted Gricar. And possibly the one that was the most unique, let me say, was he was spotted -- Ray Gricar was spotted in the studio audience of an Oprah Winfrey taping, the "Oprah" show. Right, a tipster spotted Gricar watching Oprah, sitting in the audience. Well, it did not turn out to be Gricar watching Oprah.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Back in April of 2005, the day after the elected district attorney of Centre County went missing, they found his car. Ray Gricar`s car was found in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. That`s an hour away from here. The car was locked, his cell phone was inside, his keys were missing, his wallet was missing, and they began to search for his county- issued laptop computer. That`s the laptop that the district attorney of this county would use day in and day out for official business. It was nowhere to be found.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The laptop was a county-owned laptop. It was issued to Mr. Gricar. It was -- when the officers came back and did the search of his house, they were -- I`m not sure if Patty told -- Patty Fornicola, which was his girlfriend at the time -- if -- I`m not sure if Patty told the officers, but this laptop was missing, OK? And within a month, a month-and-a-half, it was recovered out of the river minus the hard drive.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Minus the hard drive.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Minus the hard drive. A month after that, the hard drive was recovered.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So once investigators found that that laptop computer had had the hard drive intentionally removed, they went to the home of the elected district attorney to look at his home computer.

They didn`t find anything unusual except for one thing. He had researched how to fry a hard drive, how water damage can forever hurt a hard drive so you can`t retrieve information. And they found a computer program that he had recently purchased of how to wipe out the contents of a hard drive.


GRACE: The case is far from over. Detectives here in the U.S. now working with Interpol, focusing specifically on Slovenia. Why? Because Slovenia is where Gricar`s roots begin. His ancestry can be traced back to Slovenia.

His fingerprints, his DNA, his face has been registered at all data banks such as AFIS (ph) and others, and detectives continue to reissue it into those data banks just in case he turns up.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because we found the laptop, that`s good. But it doesn`t tell us anything.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The hard drive is eventually recovered along the riverbank, the only solid clues in the search for district attorney Ray Gricar.


GRACE: As a side note, Gricar`s daughter and his then-girlfriend have both been polygraphed. They both passed.

You know, it`s ironic that one of the most famous cases that Ray Gricar was ever involved in was the Penn State scandal with Jerry Sandusky. As you`ll recall, just recently, Sandusky convicted on multiple counts, horrible, horrible case of child molestation, many, many victims.

All the way back in 1998, a case came to Ray Gricar to prosecute a child molestation case against Jerry Sandusky. Gricar refused to prosecute Sandusky. Gricar claimed there was a lack of evidence.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: An awful story.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Former Penn State football coach indicted on child sex abuse charges.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The story of the initial 40 child abuse charges against Jerry Sandusky. He has denied them.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: NBC News exclusive. Former Penn State assistant coach Jerry Sandusky speaks out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A grand jury spent more than two years investigating the accusations of eight alleged victims. And there it was in the official summary of the grand jury`s findings, the name Ray Gricar. It turns out Ray was the first prosecutor to investigate an allegation of child sex abuse against Jerry Sandusky way back in 1998.

That was news to many, including Michael Madera (ph), the man who became Centre County`s DA after Ray disappeared.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I found out about Gricar`s involvement along with the rest of the world when we read the grand jury presentment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The question popping up in the media -- why didn`t Ray Gricar prosecute Jerry Sandusky 13 years ago? To understand that, you have to go back to 1998. That`s when a mother contacted the Penn State university police to say that her 11-year-old told her he`d been bear- hugged by Sandusky naked in the shower. It was an explosive allegation. Ray Gricar, the local DA, became involved. We don`t have his file. We don`t know exactly what he did. But DA Bob Buner (ph) is pretty sure he knows what Ray did first.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And when you get a case of child abuse, you just put on the game face. That`s the one. That`s the one that really gets to us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ray would have almost certainly met the alleged victim to assess his credibility.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If he met with that victim, and I believe he did, he was the one that would have made kind of a gut credibility decision.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But when you have a prominent member of the community, well-known member of the community, and then you look at the credibility of your alleged victim, does that become tough then?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, absolutely.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If it ever got to a courtroom, the case would likely come down to the testimony of one 11-year-old boy against a hometown hero. That`s where the sting, or something close to it, came in. We don`t know all the details, only this, that the mother confronted Sandusky on two occasions in May 1998 while detectives listened in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Had you ever known Ray to do that kind of a sting or run that kind of operation?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don`t know that -- I think that would be typical of what Ray would do. As I said, he was the kind of guy, when police would come to him, he`d always ask the next question. Well, have you tried this? Have you tried that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The grand jury report says Sandusky told the mother, I was wrong. I wish I could get forgiveness. I wish I were dead.


ANNOUNCER: That was from NBC`S "Dateline."



LARRY KING, HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE": The district attorney for Centre County, Pennsylvania, Ray Gricar, vanished and has been missing ever since.


GRACE: Police even went so far as to bring in a psychic to help solve the mystery of the missing prosecutor, Ray Gricar. And the psychic reveals that she believes Gricar is dead, that he was been killed, and that his body can be found within a few miles of where his red and white Mini-Cooper was left abandoned.

Now, acting on that tip from the psychic, police bring in cadaver dogs and cadaver dogs search all around the Mini-Cooper and beyond, and to date have not found Gricar`s body.


KING: Tony, as his nephew, did you know anyone that wanted to harm him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. You know, outside of anything from his case history, there`s really nothing that speaks to any kind of foul play specifically from that. He wasn`t seeking another term. So really, this year was, I guess, more of a lame duck year for him with his caseload.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We really don`t have anything as far as any type of forensic evidence. That`s what`s really hard about this case. You know, it`s still classified a missing persons case, and we have no signs of foul play at this point, other than the time period between when he disappeared, and he`s still missing at this point.

KING: Tony, your father disappeared, did he not, and was found dead, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. My father actually had a long history of documented bipolar depression, so it`s a different case there. So he had a lot of issues in his last year that really, you know, made it apparent on his case. You know, Ray actually went through that with us. He helped me on that missing persons investigation and working with the media, much like I`m doing now.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, we could speculate on a number of things. Maybe he wasn`t happy in his relationship. Maybe there`s something from his past he didn`t want to talk about. It`s not -- I`m not all that surprised that someone who would deal with something that was difficult by just walking away and trying to start a new life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ray`s friend, Bob Buner, was bewildered when he heard the news.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I absolutely did not know what to make of it at all. It was very confusing. You know, DAs don`t go missing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Former investigator Darrel Zaccagni still remembers that morning.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We just handled it as a missing person but a highly significant missing person.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Darrel has now retired from the Bellefonte police force, but back then, he was the lead investigator in the case.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I assume alarm bells were ringing loudly when the DA...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, when the DA is missing, you got a little concerned. We figured that there was a much better chance that there`s foul play involved than the guy who just doesn`t come home because he`s been out at the bars all night.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And that was just because you knew his character?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, we knew what Ray had done all his life. I mean, he had prosecuted homicides and rape for years, and then he prosecuted here and then became our DA.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Foul play was only one possibility. In those first hours after Ray went missing, the Bellefonte police say they considered several others. They ordered an aerial search of nearby roads to look for the bright red Mini, thinking Ray may have had an accident. They ordered other searches, too. They knew Ray may have gone solo somewhere. Turns out he`d done that before.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He once took off to a Cleveland Indians game.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He didn`t go this one because we called Cleveland and we had the stadium police looking for him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you potentially lose time in this investigation because of a default position that he`s going to turn up here soon, that there`s a reasonable explanation?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, we worked on it from the minute we decided we were going after this, this was a missing person. It was constant, go, go, go.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Investigators tracked Ray`s movements before he vanished and found the last known pictures of him alive on his way to the office the evening before he disappeared. It seemed routine enough, and it took them nowhere.


ANNOUNCER: That was from NBC`s "Dateline."



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was there anything odd about Ray Gricar`s behavior in the weeks leading to him going missing?

GRACE: All of Gricar`s money is still sitting in his account. He didn`t siphon it off. He didn`t transfer it. All the money is still sitting there.

Police are working under three distinct theories, and they have been very frank and told us that neither of these theories, not one of them, lends itself to be more true than the other two. And the theories are suicide, that Gricar was murdered, or that Gricar intentionally disappeared.

To Bellefonte Police Department lead investigator Darrel Zaccagni -- Darrel, why can`t you look back through the cases that he had prosecuted, especially the high-profile murder or rape cases?



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, we can. You know, it would be very time- consuming, but the point is -- and everybody seems to be missing it, we don`t know if this is a homicide. This could very well be a missing person or it could be a suicide.

GRACE: Well, you know, with that approach, I don`t think the case is ever going to be solved. Anybody missing in the world could have walked off and decided to go get a loaf of bread and not come home. But don`t you find this very unusual, that his car is there, his hard drive and computer are thrown separately into a river, and he hasn`t been seen since?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, but there`s other circumstances that you have to look at.

GRACE: OK, what?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The family history. We`re exploring the possibility of suicide. There`s a history...

GRACE: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! You mean his brother committed suicide about 15 years ago, so somehow, you think he committed suicide?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, there`s a long history of depression in the family. That`s one option that...

GRACE: With him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... we`re still looking at. And Nancy...

GRACE: Did he have depression?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have no medical reports that would indicate depression, but...

GRACE: Well, then how can you say he could have been depressed if you have no evidence he had depression?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, there is some evidence from what his girlfriend told us, towards the end before he disappeared, he was a little more depressed in the sense that he wasn`t as active as he`d been. He was not feeling well. He was taking longer naps, a little more moody. You know, and I`m by far not an expert in the field...

GRACE: Well, frankly, Darrel, you could say that about just about any man on the planet earth.

Very quickly, joining me right now, I`m hearing in my ear, from Dayton, Ohio, a very special guest. This is Ray Gricar`s nephew, Tony Gricar. Welcome, sir. How does it strike you when you hear the lead detective say, Oh, well, looking through all the files is going to be way too time-consuming, and hey, it could be a suicide?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, it`s -- obviously, it`s a difficult thing to hear it, but it`s something we`ve dealt with since day one. We`re not naive enough to think that -- you know, with his case load -- and we`re talking 20,000, 30,000 cases over, you know, his career and so...

GRACE: You know, Tony --


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... a needle in a haystack.

GRACE: Wait a minute. Wait a minute.


GRACE: I prosecuted felony cases for well over 10 years with a very, very heavy caseload. Long story short, you wouldn`t be interested in a shoplifting when somebody got straight probation and eight hours community service. I`m talking about hard-core cases such as rape, serial rape, child molestation, murder, heroin trafficking, all right? I bet you that this guy -- you could look back through his cases and find over 20 years, maybe 100 such high-profile cases.


GRACE: So is that so much to ask?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. I -- you know, I -- as far as the workings of the Bellefonte Police Department, you know, obviously, the manpower issue is definitely, I would think, an issue for going through those cases. But then, you know, the other issue is, is that my bigger concern beyond the high-profile would be the person doing a slow burn over the years. He was a huge proponent of women`s rights...

GRACE: That`s a good point.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... domestic violence issues. And so, you know, it could just as easily be something along those lines. You know, it`s just so hard to speculate because the evidence every time something comes up, it just runs into a complete dead end.


ANNOUNCER: Nancy Grace mysteries, epilogue.

GRACE: Police have searched bus lines, trains, planes, rental cars, cabs, taxis to find out if Gricar had used any of those modes of transportation. They found nothing. If he did use those modes of transportation, he did not do it under his true name. They even subpoenaed and got ahold of Gricar`s medical history, hoping there would be some clue there. Nothing.