Night Of Shooting | Crime Scene | Possible Motives | Possible Suspects |Witness Intimidation |Read Messages | Write Message

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Question: What time did the husband report hearing shots and then sirens? What time was it when the wedding party drove by and witnessed the scene? When did Merriman supposedly drive past and then when did Wallace arrive?

Asked on Sunday, May 08, 2011 at 09:50:01 AM
Reply: It's been impossible for us to form an accurate timeline because so many formal statements are in conflict and the witnesses didn't take notes of exact times.

For instance, the wedding party left the restaurant "close to 11 p.m., because they were getting ready to close," and drove past Kait's car, seeing a cop car there and a uniformed cop..

The witness who heard the shots, saw the VW bug flee the scene, and saw Kait's car against the pole but no other cars or people, did not make note of the precise time he saw that. However, the cop car that the wedding party saw does not seem to have been there. (It's not impossible that Det. Merriman may have been there, since he was in an unmarked car that the witness may not have noticed if it wasn't parked next to Kait's car, and Paul A could have been standing out of sight on the other side of Kait's car.

Det. Merriman must have stumbled on the scene immediately, since when he first caught sight of the scene he saw Kait's car and the VW Bug. By the time he performed a u-turn and drove back to investigate, the VW bug was gone (possibly on its way up the street to pull into the parking lot next door to the witnesses house?), but Paul Apodaca was there. Merriman's report gives his arrival time as 2300 hours, but that probably approximate since he wasn't formally dispatched. He called in "an accident with no injuries."

Off. Wallace was dispatched at 2302 and arrived within 40 seconds. She later explained she was "In the area." She clearly recalls seeing Paul Apodaca there and going with him and Det. Merriman to look in Kait's car and see Kait lying there bleeding and moaning. However Paul A. denies ever seeing Off. Wallace and said he drove off in his VW bug before she got there, haviing seen only Merriman.

Albq. Ambulance arrived at the scene first and found nobody there -- no cops, no Paul Apodaca, just Kait in her car, and began to remove her from the car.

The Fire Dept. Rescue unit was dispatched at 2303, arrived at 2306, in time to help the original medics load Kait into the Albq. Ambulance vehicle. (There's no record of why they were dispatched -- no indication that they were called by APD. Albq. Ambulance may have called them. Nobody is on record as having called rescue units.) They, too, report seeing no cops or by-standers, although cops began to arrive as Albuquerque Ambulance pulled away with Kait.

The medics are the ones who noticed the bullet shattered car window, the bullet hole in the door frame, and the defects in Kait's head and branded the case a shooting. An APD supervisor was requested at 2315. Wallace says she called the supervisor. Merriman says he's the one who called the supervisor. The supervisor has no recollection of Wallace contacting her or of talking to her at the scene.

Kait's girlfriend says Dung called her, hysterically babbling, "Kait's dead! They shot Kait!" between 10:30 and 11 p.m., because she and her husband had just fiinished watching the news and were getting ready for bed. Police went to Kait/Dung's apt. and "woke Dung up" to tell him about the shooting at 3000.

And on and on it goes with one story conflicting with another. There's not a single concrete fact other than the times when the supervisor was dispatched and the times the rescue units arrived that we can be sure of.

Answered by: Kait
Question: Did the husband call police? Did he hear any more shots that night?

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 04:37:48 PM
Reply: He recalls hearing 4 "very loud" shots in quick succession. The volume of the shots (if they did, indeed, come from a 22), would imply that they were NOT fired back at John Street, as APD has stated, but were fired at the corner of Arno and Lomas where Kait ended up. The husband ran outside, which was when he saw the a VW bug with at least 2 people in it, one the driver and the other in the passenger's seat, race up the street, pull into the lot next door, turn off their lights, hang there a minute, and then drive slowly back down the street in the direction from which they had come, running the stop sign at Arno and Lomas and turning right (to the west).

The husband ran toward the corner. He did not see any other cars other than Kait's against the pole and did not see any people. He returned to his house to tell his wife about the event. He did not call the police, because they had no phone.

A few minutes later they heard the sound of sirens.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: How many cars did the wedding party see at the crash site?
In what time of succession did witnesses report hearing gunfire? Two rapid bursts followed by two more or four in quick succession? The former I would suspect.
When Pat interviewed Paul in jail did she ever get any type of explanation as to how his car drove off by itself or did his aggressive response to that line of questioning cause her to back off the subject of the VW?

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 03:52:25 PM
Reply: The wedding guest saw two cars -- the red car up against a pole and a police car.

The witness heard 4 shots in quick succession.

Paul Apodaca became aggravated when asked who was with him in his VW bug. He said nobody was with him. He said, when he left the scene, he drove the VW away himself.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
a question
Question: The witnesses who reported the actions of the VW did they also report seeing Kaits wrecked car?

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 03:23:59 PM
Reply: Yes. They were in bed and heard shots coming from Lomas, half a block south. The husband jumped up, looked out the window, and saw a VW bug race up their street, pull into the lot next door, pause, turn off their headlights, and pull back onto the street to drive back in the direction from which they came. He ran outside and partway down the street and saw Kait's car against the pole, but did not take in much more than that.

Answered by: Kait's Mom

I hope you will continue posting, as I like the logical way you think and are able to put disjointed pieces together to form a picture. We totally missed the significance of the direction the cop standing next to Kait's car was facing. But you're right -- why would he look to the West other than to hide his face?

You also seem to have a lot of knowledge about firearms.

I hope you're a cop, but even if you're not, please continue to post your thoughts. They generate the thoughts of others.

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 03:01:01 PM
Question: Then that poster is right on target. The cop would turn his head toward the west so the passsengers in the passing car would not see his face.

It would take a heavy car to perform the PIT maneuver. A VW bug or for that matter a Camaro couldn't do it. But a police car could and cops are trained in how to do it. Sounds like this cop clipped the left rear bumper of Kait's car to throw it out of control so it crossed the median and ended up on the opposing curb. Maybe he even fired a shot at it to scare her, which would account for the big bullet hole in the door frame.

Then he pulled up next to her to talk to her and convince her that she was involved in something big and better keep her mouth shut. But the passing car with the wedding party people scared him into deciding he'd better get out of there before another car came by and the people got out to ask what was going on.

He either shot her himself before leaving or one of the other players shot her right after he left. Big question, why didn't she call you on her cell phone?

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 02:28:21 PM
Reply: Easy answer. This was before the era of cell phones.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Very interesting post several below this one with the subject "Witnesses." This person is onto something. Which direction was the car with the weddiing-party witnesses driving when they passed Kait's car?

Asked on Saturday, May 07, 2011 at 02:08:30 PM
Reply: The witnesses who drove past Kait's car, apparently immediately after her car came to rest agaist the pole since she was still upright behind the wheel and not prone across the front seats as she was when Det. Ronald Merriman stumbled on the scene, were driving from the east.

The witness-car contained members of a wedding party who were coming from having a late dinner at a steak house (the restaurant was closing when they left, which fits the time frame perfectly), and were returning to their motel, which was a little bit west of where the shooting occurred.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Bao Tran?
Question: If the first person the Viets called after Kaits passing was the "capper" then either he or his bosses ordered the hit it would seem?

Asked on Friday, May 06, 2011 at 07:30:07 PM
Reply: That was our initial conclusion. But at that time we didn't know about all the other activities Dung's group was involved in. Now the possibilities have broadened.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: You referenced Kaits therapist in a video I saw and I have to say it stopped me completely.
Meaning absolutely no disrespect at all and please forgive me if it comes across as such, but may I ask why?
Its just that we know so much about Kait and that seems so odd considering.
I am a social worker and I think it could hold a clue as to why she became involved in shady things and to be perfectly honest could help me in my dealings with young women.
Again please forgive me if this is insulting I just find you amazing and if perhaps you decided to speak candidly on this issue I could glean some insight to help others.

Asked on Friday, May 06, 2011 at 07:15:47 PM
Reply: Kait had a history of being attracted to inappropriate men. A few years earlier, she asked us if she could see a therapist because she was dealing with some personal problems that she wasn't comfortable discussing with us, and she needed the guidance of an objective adult. So we let her start seeing a therapist. (As it turned out, Kait's "personal problem" was that she had fallen for a man that she knew we wouldn't approve of -- he was much too old for her -- and was seeing him behind our backs, and felt guilty about it.)

After the inevitable break-up she continued seeing the therapist to try to understand why she was attracted to such people. She started dating Dung on the rebound after the break-up. Dung apparently became afraid that she was revealing things to the therapist about his illegal activities., (which she was), because he demanded that she stop seeing the therapist. So Kait told us she wanted to stop.

Since Kait was over the age of 16, the therapist was not able to reveal to us anything that went on in their sessions, but she did contact us to say that she thought it would be a mistake for Kait to stop therapy at that point. Kait stubbornly refused to go back, so that was that.

After the shooting, the rules changed. Don gave the therapist permission to release Kait's files to APD in case there was information in them that would help them with their investigation. They said they weren't interested in reviewing the files.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
civil suit
Question: I understand a lawyer is not going to go after APD unless there is a monetary reward in it for them but really, so what? Why not sue for damages and then donate recovery to a cause? It seems the only way at this point to hold the department responsible

Asked on Friday, May 06, 2011 at 06:56:23 PM
Reply: By the time we obtained enough information to build a case against APD for malfeasance and obstruction of justice, the statute of limitations on those two crimes had run out.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: I cannot believe I am writing this but I think the wedding party saw the killer...the cop. I think he delivered the death blow which is why she was seen upright by the wedding guests but found lying down by rescue...and wasn't he deliberately looking in the opposite direction? Trying to obscure his face it seems.
A .22 is not loud it's like a pop gun its odd that window is shattered the way it is....I think the larger caliber used shattered the window which would explain the shatter pattern and the second bullet hole inside the car(with missing slug).
She was shot at first with larger caliber, run into the pole using the Pit Maneuver now dazed and possibly hurt the cop (witnessed by the wedding party) hiding his face by looking in opposite direction pushed Kait down and delivered shots with. 22. Which would explain no blood on left side of car/clothes and shoes scattered would indicate a struggle. The purse not having blood could be explained by the could have simply fallen into the floorboard when the car struck the pole thus avoiding blood.
Have the wedding party witnesses been put under hypnosis?
I think they saw the killer.

Asked on Friday, May 06, 2011 at 01:20:03 PM
Reply: The way you'v e described the scenario, that's a very good deduction.

But several other parties would have had to know this was going to happen (or, at the least, that Kait was due to be chased and intimidated) for so many to have been at the scene. We know the Vietnamese were there, or Dung would not have been calling people, hysterically proclaiming,"Kait's dead! They shot Kait!" four hours before police "woke him up" to inform him. And we know Paul Apodaca was there, as a passenger in a car that contained two other people, (possibly his brother Mark, who is currently serving time for murder, and his drug dealer Lee Padilla, whom he admittedly was visiting that night.)

There are common denominators that tie all these people together. Lee Padilla's brother was an APd undercover narc. Paul Apodaca knew An Quoc Le. Vietnamese frequented the auto body shop on Arno where the VW bug tried to take refuge after fleeing the crime scene. Word could get around pretty fast that a "fun event" was going to take place that night.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Rod /Sharon
Question: My question is how can you trust anything Sharon has said? Her affection for Kait was obviously false and she appears to have ties to the criminal activity.
Also did you ever meet Rod face to face? Seems strange about him, after all she was murdered shortly after meeting him. Its curious

Asked on Thursday, May 05, 2011 at 09:30:17 PM
Reply: No, we cannot trust anything Sharon has said, as she continually contradicts herself. We can't even know for sure that she wasn't in the car with Kait at 9 p.m. (the first time Kait was chased, while driving in the direction of Sharon's house). The truck driver who witnessed the chase said he saw a girl with long dark hair. Sharon had long dark hair; Kait had short blond hair. And the person he would have seen would have been the person in the passenger's seat, not the driver.

I have met Rod and believe he was not involved.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: If what Sharon said about ownership of Beyond Ordinary is true then why would she identify Kait as her sister? If she was indeed related to them they would know that is not true

Asked on Thursday, May 05, 2011 at 02:09:47 PM
Reply: Don't know for sure. I can only speculate that Sharon and Kait were out together one eveniing and Sharon suggested they go to Beyond Ordinary, which was a familiar hangout for her. And Kait, always up for a new adventure, said, "Great, but I'm not old enough to get in without an adult relative with me." Whoever the person was who worked at the door, (I don't go to pubs, so I don't know the process of getting people admitted), would not have let Kait in unless she was in the company of an adult he recognized. He, himself, would not have been a family member. He would simply have been a hired employee who recognized Sharon and took her word that this girl was her sister.

What i DO know is that Sharon was introducing Kait as her sister once they entered the pub.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Lois you had stated you left Albuquerque after the release of your book due to threats obviously serious enough to take action...would you elaborate on that please? Were they calls, packages, vandalism? Who do you think was behind it? The book was already out why do you think they were so scared of you even then?
On another note please don't wait too long to publish the Tally Keeper...

Asked on Thursday, May 05, 2011 at 09:22:37 AM
Reply: Several strongly worded phone calls left on our voice mail. At least one identified herself (yes, it was a female) as Vietnamese and volunteered enough personal information about our family for us to know she was calling on the behalf of someone who had been in our home. Three with Hispanic accents. A couple with unidentifiable voices. And some messages passed on to us by "go betweens' who had relatives at APD.

We don't know the identities of any of these particular individuals other than the "go-betweens." Who won't divulge the sources.

yes, the book was already out, but these people were vengeful. So something I said in that book must have rattled cages.

At any rate, Albuquerque was no longer a place where we wanted to live.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
check to sharon
Question: Where is the check that was found in the rubble at Arno? Is it posted anywhere online?

Asked on Wednesday, May 04, 2011 at 10:59:14 PM
Reply: We have the check. No, it's not posted on line but it is documented in the video our daughter Robin filmed about the case.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
beyond ordinary
Question: If Sharon's family owned the club "beyond ordinary" I don't know if there is a connection but I remember bandidos there more than once...

Asked on Wednesday, May 04, 2011 at 08:00:44 PM
Reply: From what Sharon has stated, the Club "Beyond Ordinary" was owned by her brother-in-law, John Smith, and the Solomon brothers, Roy and Jeff. Sharon's husband, Blake Smith, allegedly worked there for a period of time as a bar tender. Sharon apparently took Kait there on at least one occasion, (identifying herself as Kait's older sister, since Kait didn't have a fake ID), which is where Sharon introduced Kait to Frank Arellano, (owner of the auto body shop at 824 Arno) and his bookkeeper/girlfriend, Stephanie Francisco.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
that horrible night
Question: after contacting the siblings, who else did you phone---her grandparents, her friends, her teachers, her work buddies?

Asked on Tuesday, May 03, 2011 at 11:53:25 PM
Reply: We didn't call anybody that night other than her siblings. (Her grandparents were deceased.) Early in the morning we called a couple who were our closest friends in Albuquerque, and they came to the hospital to be with us. We didn't need to call anyone else in Albuquerque, because it was headline news in the morning paper and on television.

That night, after Kait was pronounced brain dead, we called her uncles, who lived out of state.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Lois, let me start by saying you are truly amazing. You have the heart of a lion and the voice of an are an inspiration to us all.
But I am wondering about photos...a reoccurring theme on this board is info on these people(cops,arrellanos, etc.)I can see I am not alone in my Googling for any info but I cannot find any pictures of these shady characters, could your PI in Abq get some that you could post on the site?

Asked on Sunday, May 01, 2011 at 08:49:46 PM
Reply: Paul Apodaca\'s photo is available on line at the New Mexico Sex Offenders Web site. He\'s listed in Albuquerque under the name Apodaca, Paul Raymond.\r\n\r\nI don\'t have access to the other photos in a form I can post.\r\n\r\nThe \"voice of an angel\" you\'re referring to is probably not mine. The person singing our original lullabies at is our oldest daughter, Robin.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
APD Lt. Patrick Dunworth
Question: Yes, Dunworth had total control, not only over the investigation of your daughter's case, but over what did and didn't go into the case file and other records. He was close with civilian data entry tech, Julie Allred - she would have had control of every report processed.

Dunworth got dumped out of APD after Kait's case fell through.

Asked on Wednesday, April 27, 2011 at 03:04:12 PM
Reply: Thanks for that info. I'd heard the rumor about his being forced out of APD when Kait's case fell through but didn't know if it was true or not. If it is, does anyone have any addition information about that incident?

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Thank you for sharing your heartbreaking story. I enjoy reading your fiction and Who Killed My Daughter? and am so sorry to hear that Kait\\\'s murder is still unsolved. \\r\\n\\r\\nI wish I had any information or even theories that would help, but I don\\\'t. I do have a question, though- how did Kait and Dung meet? How long were they together? What was their everyday relationship like? They seem like such different people and even if he wasn\\\'t directly responsible for her death, he was certainly a shady character. What did Kait see in him?\\r\\n

Asked on Sunday, April 24, 2011 at 09:01:53 PM
Reply: They met at a coffee house across the street from the University where Kait was takiing some classes, (despite the fact that, at that time, she was still in high school). They went together about 18-months, but for all but the last couple of months, Kait lived at home with us and had a curfew. Then, she went to bed, and he, allegedly, went home and went to bed as well. (At least that's what Kait believed.)

However, when Kait got her own apartment and Dung moved in with her, it quickly became apparent that he had some kind of second life that she hadn't been aware of. He and his Vietnamese buddies went out at night, and he usually didn't return until 2 or 3 a.m.

You're right, they had nothing in common. But Kait was a nurturer, always bringing home injured animals to nurse back to health, delighting in being everybody's favorite babysitter, couseling disturbed friends, etc. Her goal was to become a doctor so she could "help people." In order to feel good about herself, she needed to feel needed. Dung was very appealing -- an apparently vulnerable (and attractive) young man, far from his own country and family, struggling with the English language, unable to find or hold a job. A sort of "boy child." And he seemed to adore Kait and to depend upon her for everything, from doing his laundry to driving him around to filling out job applications for him.

We could see that appeal and considered him a harmless distraction during her final year of high school. She was on the honor roll, held a responsible after-school job, didn't use drugs, and never got into trouble of any kind. And he seemed to make her happy. We were certain it wouldn't last -- that once she started college fulltime she would meet somebody more appropriate to build a life with -- so we weren't worried about it.

Answered by: Kait's Mom

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