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nuthin much
Question: lois duncan i am so sorry she was very pretty and she seemed like a type of person that wont be mixed up in a crowd like that thats why my mom always tells me to pick the right friends that i hang around with because who knows what might happen

Asked on Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 06:08:46 PM
Reply: Your Mom is absolutely right.

Answered by: Kait's Mom

Asked on Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 06:05:41 PM
Reply: Yes, it's all true. And, yes, she WAS a nice girl. But she was headstrong, as teenagers tend to be, and made some foolish decisions, which cost her her life.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
i am very sorry
Question: lois duncan i am 11 years old and i did not read your book but it sounds great i wouldnt have known that your daughter died if it wasnt for my library teacher she should us a movie that she recorded i felt like crying it was so sad i think that you just need to stay strong and think about the good stuff that i going to happen also thankyou for inspiring me to not hang out with the wrong crowd

Asked on Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 05:53:39 PM
Reply: I can only guess that the DVD your teacher showed you was "A Visit with Lois Duncan." People with an interest in view excerpts from that DVD or in purchasing a copy can do either or both on line. They can access the link from my professional Web site at

Answered by: Kait's Mom
I am sorry
Question: i am 11 and read the story and my name happens to be Kaitlin and i hope that u someday find the shooter but kaitlyn was rite they will rot in He** i am hopefully going to be a CSI when i grow up adn i no u proably dont want to hear from a sixth grader but i will hopefully try to help u in watever way i can! I am very srry
-lots of love and cheeriness to bring u up Kaitlin

Asked on Thursday, April 16, 2009 at 04:11:46 PM
Reply: Dear Kaitlin (what a lovely name!) -- of course, I'm happy to hear from a 6th grader, especially one who sends such a kind message. However, I'm a bit concerned about WHO KILLED MY DAUGHTER? being read by elementary school students. This book contains subject matter you should not try to take in at your age.

Which leads me into a subject that is totally unrelated to Kait's case, but I feel strongly enough about it so I'm going to switch gears and use this as a podium. The AR (Accellerated Reading) programs that are used in many schools today to promote reading, horrify me. In these programs, books are designated as reading material for particular grades, and kids accumulate points by reading the more advanced books on the list. I've never understood why certain books I've written, with strong subject matter and 17-18-yr-old protagonists, are rated as 4th or 5th grade level. Those are young children! They should be reading the Narnia Chronicles, etc.

Well, now I know what's behind this. This past week, I was honored with the Katharine Drexel lifetime achievement award, presented by the Catholic Librarians branch of the American Library Association of a "body of work." While at the convention in Anaheim, I asked several librarians the criterion as to how the AR books are selected and rated. They informed me that the point system and grade level are determined by the length of the sentences in the book and the number of syllables in the words. NOT BY CONTENT!!! One librarian told me, "If you want your books to get more points on the reading lists and be read by older students, make your sentences longer."

This is probably why this lovely 11-yr-old Kaitlin read WHO KILLED MY DAUGHTER?. And why most of my books that are appropriate for middle school or high school students are designated on the AR lists as 5th grade level or below. Students who are the right age for the subject matter can't earn points by reading them, and some of the ones who read them should NOT be reading them.

I recently received an e-mail from a 16-yr-old boy, who said, "I told my 12-yr-old brother that he should read KILLING MR. GRIFFIN, which was my favorite book when I was his age. I knew he would love it. He told me he couldn't read it because it was rated below his reading level and he couldn't waste time reading for fun when it won't earn him points."

I think this is crazy.

Answered by: Kait
"A Visit with Lois Duncan"
Question: I apologize for a message that doesn't have to do with Kait's case, but I didn't know how else to ask you this since your professional site about your books doesn't have a message board.

My son Jason is graduating from middle school and I want to give his wonderful English teacher a thank you present for all she has done to turn him from a nonreader into a reading addict. You're Jason's favorite author and the perfect present for that teacher would be the DVD "A Visit with Lois Duncan" so she can play it in her classroom to inspire other kids to become readers and let them know that authors of books are REAL PEOPLE. I can't find the DVD in any video stores. Is there a way to order it on line?

Asked on Sunday, April 12, 2009 at 02:18:36 PM
Reply: Thank you for appreciating Jason's teacher this much. Teachers who inspire kids to read books in a time that seemingly has been taken over by TV and the Internet deserve sainthood.

You can view a clip from the video at and then decide if you think it's worth acquiring.

It's a 35 minute DVD, "A Visit with Lois Duncan," that takes students into my home to visit with me and my family. On it I discuss the ups and downs of my career, take viewers step by step through my writing process, and describe what happens behind the scenes when a writer's novels go to Hollywood. It even includes home movies of me as a child and excerpts from trailers of some of the movies based on my books, including KILLING MR. GRIFFIN and HOTEL FOR DOGS. Classes who view that DVD can contact me by e-mail, and I will respond, so it can be an interactive experience.

My daughter Robin, a videotographer, did the filming and editing. My daughter Kerry, a former TV newswoman, conducted the interview. My husband, Don, appears on it also, as well as pictures of our children and grandchildren, and our favorite dog.

I DO talk briefly about Kait's case, but at a level that I don't think will be upsetting to young people. Nothing like what's on this Web site.

Answered by: Lois Duncan
A project
Question: I am very sorry not to be able to get your internet program, I am sure it is interesting.

I was thinking about your situation recently and would like to share an excercise I was told about by my son in law who is now an officer for some years.

Right now, this minute, with no prep. Play deceased by misadventure. Now, look at your rooms and cars, files, notes, calendar, bits of what would be considered "evidence" to your demise; ie., motive, opportunity etc.

He explained to me that this excercise was to help them as criminologist students to understand that much that is gathered means nothing. That overwhelming ourselves with "tiny pieces of the puzzle" clutters the trurer picture. With all of the heartbreak you have endured, has someone who has not read your book, sifted thru the evidence that is available (the bullet/shell casing mystery aside - unreal) so see if a simpler more direct clue has been passed over? Obviously this was just an excercise and not to be conducted in each scene. Only considered.

Be well and I wish for you healing. As a surviver of a victim, I saw people make way to much of the events leading up to the event itself. But all situations are different.

Asked on Saturday, April 11, 2009 at 12:14:28 PM
Reply: Thank you for your interesting post and good observations

The answer to your question is, (with the exception of insurance fraud attorneys and claims investigators in California, who did read my book and recognized suspects they were investigating on their own), investigators have not been influenced by my book and/or our family's personal beliefs.

Kait was killed in 1989, and my book was not published until a full year after APD dropped off the case in 1991. So nothing in my book had any effect upon APD's investigation.

In 1991, a private investigator in Albuquerque was retained by a law firm to conduct an accident reconstruction of Kait's shooting in respect to a potential motor-vehicle-insurance-claim. (We were never approached about this and knew nothing about it, so contributed no information.) As a result of that reconstruction, the law firm came to the conclusion that the scene investigation was a mess and there was no evidence to support a drive-by shooting. So they lost interest in pursuing it.

But the PI was so intrigued she couldn't let it go. In 1994, when the PI saw me on national TV discussing Kait's case and realized that our family knew nothing about the problems with the crime scene and the fact that a man with a long record of violent attacks upon women was standing next to Kait's car when the first officer got there and was allowed to walk away without questioning, that PI contacted us and offered us, without charge, all the information she had acquired on her own. When I offered to send her my book, she said she didn't want it. She didn't want to be influenced by our family's beliefs.

It's been the same with almost all outside investigators who have stepped into this case to help us. Det. Jerry Berry, who conducts the radio blog "When Justice Fails," concentrates primarily on physical evidence. (By the way, that blog is on the Internet indefinitely. Anybody can go there and listen at any time.)

My personal reactions -- or possible over-reactions and misinterpretations -- may permenate my book. But those have not influenced the investigation.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: I have been offered the chance from work to visit Albuquerque, NM. But I just wanted to see is it was ok to see the old house and the apartments complex, because I am using Kait's story to read a term paper for criminal Justice class on unsolved murders. Kaits' and Ramsey girl are the too case I am reading about. I hope its ok and I want to pay respect to your family.

Asked on Thursday, April 02, 2009 at 07:14:33 AM
Reply: Of course, you can drive by and look from the outside at our old house and the apartment complex where Kait used to live. But you can't ring the doorbell and invite yourself in to look at the inside. That house now belongs to other people, and there are new residents in the apartment. They would feel they were being harassed.

Answered by: Kait's mom
To You and Your Family
Question: Hi Louis... My name is Sara... I wrote to you on here once before... A few years ago after I had read your book about Kait. I am now 20 years old and graduated from High School. I just recently found out that I am pregnant (I'll be 11 Weeks as of 4-2-09) And since I have found out, I have been thinking a lot about your book and what happened to Kait, and it makes me realize that someday a tragedy like that could strike my family and I honestly don't know what I would do... I can only imagine how hard that must have been for you/how hard it still is. I just thought that I would stop in and once again give my deepest sympathy's to you and your family. Since I have last written, have any new leads formed on the case? I have been thinking a lot lately about rereading the book and may go to the public library to see if I can find it.. I hope to hear back from you soon! Take Care!

Asked on Wednesday, April 01, 2009 at 03:14:04 PM
Reply: Dear Sara, this is definitely not the time for you to reread that book or think about Kait's sad situation. This is a time for you to be happy and focus totally on the beautiful new life you soon will be bringing into this world.

Congratulations and God bless!

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Admired Reader
Question: I could not put down the book after reading a few pages and kept go on til finished it. What a heart-broken and terrible justice systems that we're living at that time as well as today! I know this book was written several years ago and wondered if this case(Kait Arquette)has been solved? I would love to have that letter to be translated in Vietnames for FREE of charge. I am a Vietnamese nationality who's currently work with the court systems itself(as an Interprter/Translator). I've been working with the court systems for a few years now, and knowing why our judicial systems are going down-drain. The criminals play mind games and used the systems freely. It is shameful to know that the Vietnamese gangsters existed, and that the Vietnamese community are ignoring these vicous acts. Having a daughter of my own I know exactly what Lois went through if my daughter was murdered. However, in my view, Lois should never allow Kait to let Dung Nguyen lives with her, or even allow her to go trips with him. I feel your sympathy and share your sorrow with you and your family. Wish you the best in finding the mystery murder and bring these evils to justice.
LMC in Georgia

Asked on Saturday, March 28, 2009 at 09:43:57 PM
Reply: Thank you for writing. Please don't think we are holding Vietnamese people in general responsible for the actions of Vietnamese criminal groups. One of my most cherished letters is from a Vietnamese girl who wrote to me as follows:

"I am a 17-year-old girl who lives in San Diego. I am one of the Vietnamese boat people and very proud of my heritage, except I am shameful of the conduct of some of my fellow refugees. I am afraid for my life when I am in Little Saigon after dark. My mother's hairdresser was gunned down by the Vietnamese Mafia. Storekeepers close shop early for fear of being robbed and killed. The fear this community has is fear of retaliation. It's a catch 22 -- tell and hope that justice will prevail -- don't tell and keep your family alive.
Thank you for writing your book. You have taken one of the first steps in unveiling organized Vietnamese crime to the general public and in turning the legal wheels that will one day make Little Saigon and all other Vietnamese communities safe again.”

We didn't have a choice as to whether to "allow" Kait to get her own apartment and let Dung move in with her. She was almost 19 years old, graduating from high school -- (she'd taken her finals and all that was left was the graduation ceremony), and self-supporting. She was legally and financially able to control her own life. The trip she took with Dung was her graduation present. They were supposedly going to be staying with Dung's married sister who owned an import shop in Orange County, and the reason for the trip was supposedly to go to Disneyland. Kait even gave us the address and phone number for Dung's "sister," (which we later discovered was the address and phone number for Bao Tran.)

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: On Monday evening, March 30, (7 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time) the "When Justice Fails" radio blog show will be about the "Real Crimes Web site."
The show starts off with the moderator, Jerry Berry, (a former police detective, who quit the department rather than participate in a cover-up), interviewing a few "special guests," This coming Monday, those will be my husband and me and -- unless there's a technical problem -- THE NATION'S BEST KNOWN TRUE CRIME WRITER, ANN RULE!!!

This blog is an Internet radio show. Listeners all over the world can go to and listen to it.
The cool thing about it is that the shows are recorded and stay on the Internet. People don't have to hear them in real time; they can go to the Web site at their convenience and listen to any show they want. If you go there now, you can listen to past shows about the Ronda Reynolds case and our daughter Kait's case.

If you want to call in on Monday night, all you'll need to do is tune in to listen to the show and, when Jerry opens the phone lines, turn down your speakers and dial 1-646-727-3643.

The show is recorded in Washington state at 7 p.m. PST, and the rest of us have to coincide with the time differences. So, depending upon what time zone you're in, you'll need to figure out what coincides with 7 p.m. on the West Coast.

Lois Arquette

Asked on Friday, March 27, 2009 at 07:30:07 AM
Radio Show
Question: I just want to comment that Lois & Don sound so sweet on air. It just breaks my heart that Kait's murder has not been resolved after all these years. It also angers me and I found myself screaming at the speakers..."It's sooooo obviously a cover-up!" I can't believe current members and/or past memebers of the APD are not just guilty-ridden and shamed. How could these people even sleep at night with this on their conscious? It sickens me.

I have a question for Lois or Don. Is there any way to get a copy of the "Unsolved Mysteries" episode on Kait's murder? Or is it availabe online?

P.S. I'm so glad you have Pat on your side. She's sounds so geniune and knowledgeable.

Thanks for fighting in "Kait's Army",

Toledo, OH

Asked on Friday, March 27, 2009 at 12:09:14 AM
Reply: Thank you for listening to "When Justice Fails." I hope everyone will. Yes, we are indeed fortunate to have a private investigator like Pat Caristo, NIA/NM (National Investigations Agency of New Mexico). She's more than "genuine and knowledgable" -- she's Mother Teresa. She has turned her agency non-profit so as to be able to provide pro bono services to victims of violent crime.

I have no idea how to get a copy of the "Unsolved Mysteries" segment on Kait's case. It's syncidated, but I don't believe it's available as a DVD.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Officers Leaving the Scene ?
Question: Since when do officers, whether off-duty or not, leave the scene of any accident or crime ? That is truly unbelievable ! I can't believe this was not investigated and people fired over this. I am almost finished reading your book and had no idea there was another coming out about your daughter and the case. I look forward to reading that as well and hope your family knows that a lot of people do believe you (about what happened and being able to communicate with Kait after her death).

Shelley Laugerman
Texas Fan of so many of your books (absolutely loved Down a Dark Hall as a young girl and introduced it to my own daughter, Sydney)

Asked on Thursday, March 26, 2009 at 11:54:52 AM
Civil RICO leading to criminal RICO
Question: Everyone (individual officers/collective departments) identified, involved and incompetant/derelict in their sworn duty can be sued in civil ourt, for the same activity, or lack of same.

In civil court the standards of culpability are less stringent; in criminal court jurys/judges are bound by all, or nothing reasonable doubt.

In civil court, the judgement is based upon a preponderence (majority rule, 51 % rulings) of the evidence.

Former cop/intelligence analyst.

Seek a civil rights lawyer.


Asked on Monday, March 23, 2009 at 10:32:47 PM
Reply: Thank you for that suggestion. You sound like a knowlegable person, and I wish you'd called in to the show last night. Your input would have added a lot. We will look into the feasibility of what you're suggesting in view of a statute of limitations.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Do you know that the trial startet for the 3 teens killed in the East Mountains? I hope the families get justice. We keep reading about 2 high profile lawyers from Denver defending the alledged killer. I would like to know who is paying for the lawyers? That is really strange, that he has those expensive lawyers. I feel for the families and hope they get justice.d8yjpy

Asked on Monday, March 23, 2009 at 04:05:37 PM
Reply: I know and like Kevin's mother and am heartsick for her and the parents of the other two victims. Like you, I hope justice prevails and they've arrested the right person and haven't just set someone up in order to close the case.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: For All the members of Kait's Army,

The 4th segment on the coverage of the Kaitlyn Arquette murder investigation will be presented tonight, Monday, March 23, on the Internet-radio-blo, WHEN JUSTICE FAILS.

This should be very interesting because -- along with Don and me and our private investigator, Pat Caristo -- a special guest will be CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY, MICHAEL BUSH, who specialized in car wreck insurance fraud cases and flew to Albuquerque at his own expense to interview witnesses and suspects that the Albuquerque Police Department did not interrogate.

Who knows who may call in as a result of Michael's appearance tonight?!!! The witnesses and suspects he interviewed? The people in law enforcement who covered up for them? Or innocent people with information that supplements Michael's information?

The show is recorded live at 7 p.m. PST in Washington state, (meaning that for those on the East Coast, it will be 10:00 p.m., and for those of you in New Mexico it will be 8:00 p.m.) The blog is at If you want to join in the discussion, you will need to listen tonight and call in by dialing 646-727-3643.

But, if you miss tonight's real time program, that does not mean that you cannot hear what transpired and cannot contact us by private e-mail at with comments, questions or information.

The blog will stay up indefinitely. You can always listen and advise other people to listen

Please spread the word to others who have an interest in Kait’s case.

Lois Duncan Arquette

Asked on Monday, March 23, 2009 at 03:01:48 PM
Question: Hello Mrs. Duncan,

I red your book \"Who killed my daughter\" several times - it touched me deep in my heart! This site is very interesting an I hope, you will get the information you need.

Greetings from germany, Tina Gundlach

Asked on Sunday, March 22, 2009 at 01:04:56 AM
Reply: Thank you for this caring message from Germany.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
RE: Officer Mary Ann Wallace
Question: I was intrigued by that too. I could see Merriman driving by off duty - maybe he was on his way home after his shift, or it was his day off and he was going from Point A to Point B.

But Wallace? It seems like she was parked just down the block or something, she arrived so quickly. And where did she go between the time that she caught the call and the ambulance arrived?

Here's another point that caught my attention when I listened to the broadcast - the police "woke Dung up" at the apartment at 3 am. But when I read the book, I remember a part where he told a newspaper reporter that he "went down there, but she was already gone." (Lois & Don, correct me if I'm wrong, please.)

I don't think the police would have told him where Kait was shot. They would have said that something happened and she was at the hospital.

Asked on Saturday, March 21, 2009 at 08:29:51 PM
Reply: According to Det. Steve Gallegos's report, at 3 a.m. APD went to Kait/Dung's apartment. They questioned Dung for about an hour, during which time he told them that he was out with his friends until 10 p.m., when Khanh Pham dropped him back at the apartment. (Sharon Smith told police Kait had her phoning the apartment until 10:40 p.m., and nobody answered. If Dung was there, why didn't he pick up the phone?) When the police left, Dung told them he was going directly to the hospital to be with Kait.

However, he and two carloads of his Vietnamese friends, (according to a hospital security guard, who saw them later in the parking not, there were eight of them), drove straight to the crime scene, bypassing the hospital en route.

You're right -- the police would not have told him where the crime scene was. They didn't tell US, so why tell Dung? Especially since Kait had long since been transported to the hospital. How could Dung have rounded up all those friends so quickly, all dressed and ready to go at 4 a.m.? And why would he have wanted to take them with him anyway, when his attention should have been focused on his dying girlfriend?

Something is wrong with this picture.

Answered by: Kait's mom
Officer Mary Ann Wallace
Question: After listening to the When Justice Fails radio blogs, there's been a lot of reference to the off duty cop Ron Merriman but almost nothing about Mary Ann Wallace, the first officer dispatched to the scene who got there so fast that it was like she was a block away. I went back through the posts on this board and found one that said she was the girlfriend and roommate of Alex Marentes, the president of the police union, and he was a field officer at Kate's scene.

I'd like to know more about Wallace. She wasn't there when the ambulance arrived either, but no ones commented about that. She seems to have slipped thru the cracks leaving Merriman to take all the shit. Is that because she was Marantes's girlfriend or some other reason?

Asked on Saturday, March 21, 2009 at 02:29:02 PM
Reply: I don't know anything about Officer Wallace's personal life.

But I do find the conflicting statements of the alleged first three people at the scene -- Det. Merriman, Officer Wallace, and Paul Apodaca to be very confusing. (I say "alleged," because the medics who transported Kait to the hospital consider THEMSELVES to be the first people at the scene, since no one was there when they arrived.)

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Question: Former political powerhouse Manny Aragon was sentenced Tuesday to more than five years in prison for his part in the Metro Courthouse construction scandal...Just thought you would like to know.

Highland High class of 91

Asked on Tuesday, March 17, 2009 at 10:50:55 PM
Reply: He was also fined $750,000 -- the bulk of which he already has forfeited to the government -- and ordered to pay at least $649,000 in restitution. He will also undergo three years supervised probation upon his release.

Answered by: Kait's Mom
Rod called in!
Question: I was so excited when I listened to the When Justice Fails radio blog last night and Rod called in! In your book Rod was Kait's mysterious secret boyfriend but you never could find him and I wasn't ever sure he really existed. and then last night he phoned into the program. It made the whole thing so real, having one of the characters in the book come forth as a real person.

I hope others fromthe book will call in too.

Asked on Tuesday, March 17, 2009 at 11:01:20 AM
Reply: It was kind of Rod to call in, and I know it wasn't easy for him. For those of you who missed the show in real time, you can hear it on The portion where Rod called in is last night's show, Monday March 16.

One of the most important things Rod said, other that to confirm the fact that he and Kait were seeing each other, was that, shortly before the murder, she asked him, "What would you do if I died?" That is not the kind of question a teenage girl would ask a new boyfriend unless she had reason to be afraid that that might happen.

An attorney also called in with interesting comments. And our private investigator was a fountain of information. If you're going to listen to only one of the blogs, I'd choose that one.

Answered by: Kait's Mom

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