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The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby dunk50 » Mon Jun 27, 2011 9:38 pm

Buck Wheat wrote:
dunk50 wrote:Now that we are already a little off topic, was the murder of the MAYORS SECRETARY ever solved. A I recall she found by a dumpster, under a discarded mattress behind Howard Johnsons on 31 North. Could be wrong about the hotel, it's been a long time. I kind of remember her possibly being pregnant. Maybe they took tissue samples for a DNA search, yea I know, been watching to much TV. :whistle: Oh and while were at it, did they ever find Kathy Longs body?


MAYOR'S SECRETARY? Buck doesn't remember that one? Are you referring to JANEICE LONGS who was allegedly murdered by Jerry Libertowski back in 1973? JANICE SANDERS was his other '73 victim and neither body has ever been found. Many locals always figured he fed their carcasses to the hogs on his father's Buchanan farm ...

:whistle:


No Buck, actually a distant cousin of mine married Jerry after those murders. I didn't even know her name, just family talk so she could have been the second wife. Go figure! I will do some digging but you people are much better than I at this Internet searching. What I do remember is that it was early 70's and the only name I remember in the Mayors office was (Barcom) (sp) possibly James. NOT that he had anything to do with it, just that he was around at that time. I certainly hope someone can find it. I would hate to think I believed that story for 40 years and couldn't prove it.
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Happy Mom » Mon Jun 27, 2011 10:10 pm

Buck Wheat wrote:Here you go, HM:

http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/l/langs_janeice.html
http://officialcoldcaseinvestigations.com/showthread.php?t=10252

Libertowski went to his grave a few months ago without ever being convicted of these 2 homicides. Buck wonders what kind of punishment God dished out when Jerry received his final judgment?

:whistle:
Buck, You're my hero. :romance-hearteyes: :romance-heartsthree: :romance-heartspink: many thanks!! This case is so sad... I feel for their parents not ever knowing what happened to their daughters.
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Buck Wheat » Tue Jun 28, 2011 7:49 am

dunk50 wrote:
Buck Wheat wrote:
dunk50 wrote:Now that we are already a little off topic, was the murder of the MAYORS SECRETARY ever solved. A I recall she found by a dumpster, under a discarded mattress behind Howard Johnsons on 31 North. Could be wrong about the hotel, it's been a long time. I kind of remember her possibly being pregnant. Maybe they took tissue samples for a DNA search, yea I know, been watching to much TV. :whistle: Oh and while were at it, did they ever find Kathy Longs body?


MAYOR'S SECRETARY? Buck doesn't remember that one? Are you referring to JANEICE LONGS who was allegedly murdered by Jerry Libertowski back in 1973? JANICE SANDERS was his other '73 victim and neither body has ever been found. Many locals always figured he fed their carcasses to the hogs on his father's Buchanan farm ...

:whistle:


No Buck, actually a distant cousin of mine married Jerry after those murders. I didn't even know her name, just family talk so she could have been the second wife. Go figure! I will do some digging but you people are much better than I at this Internet searching. What I do remember is that it was early 70's and the only name I remember in the Mayors office was (Barcom) (sp) possibly James. NOT that he had anything to do with it, just that he was around at that time. I certainly hope someone can find it. I would hate to think I believed that story for 40 years and couldn't prove it.


Jim Barcome! He has been a Machine flunky for years. At the age of 80, he was still sucking off the taxpayer teat last year:

Barcome, James
St. Joseph County
Probate/Juvenile Court
$11903
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Happy Mom » Sun Jun 24, 2012 7:34 pm

This was in Crimestoppers today!

CRIMESTOPPERS
It's been 24 years since woman's killing


June 24, 2012

Late the night of June 24, 1988, 28-year-old Miriam Rice left her house at 844 Park Ave. in South Bend to walk her dog.

About an hour later, Miriam's family contacted South Bend police to report her missing. The next day, Miriam's dog was found nearby hiding under a car on Riverside Drive.

During the next several days, an intense search was conducted by police, as well as by Miriam's family and friends.


On June 29, Miriam's body was discovered about two miles away on the north bank of Pinhook Lagoon, hidden among dense trees and brush. She died of multiple skull fractures. She was four months' pregnant.


If you know who killed Miriam Rice and contact Crime Stoppers, you could receive a cash reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a donor-funded program that serves 12 counties in Michiana. You can contact it about any felony crime or fugitive.
http://www.southbendtribune.com/news/sb ... 0716.story


Submit a secure tip online at MichianaCrimeStoppers.com, or through the same secure link on the Facebook page.

Submit a mobile tip using the free Tip Submit app for iPhone or Android. Your tips cannot be traced back to you.

Or call 800-342-STOP, or 574-288-STOP. Crime Stoppers does not have caller ID, and it won't ask your name.

All tips will be assigned code numbers, which will serve as your only identification, even if your tip leads to a reward.
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Happy Mom » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:10 pm

Husband faces wife's alleged killer 31 years after Miriam Rice's murder
By Lincoln Wright South Bend Tribune 14 hrs ago

Image


SOUTH BEND — It’s been nearly 31 years since Miriam Rice was killed, but the pain is still fresh for her husband. Three decades after his wife was killed, Jeff Rice took the stand and faced one of her alleged killers for the first time.

Monday was the start of what is expected to be a four-day trial for 56-year-old Barbara Brewster, charged with murder in the 1988 homicide.

Jeff Rice, now 61, was the first to testify. He was smiling as he talked about the home near the St. Joseph River just northwest of downtown South Bend that he shared with his wife, Miriam Rice, who was 28 at the time of her death. The couple had a 3-year-old son, and Miriam Rice was four months pregnant.

The night of June 24, 1988, she left their Park Avenue home to walk the family’s dog, Max. Jeff Rice said he remembers helping her put her socks and white tennis shoes on. As his wife’s pregnancy developed, he said, he enjoyed helping and taking care of her. He stayed home with their son that night.

It was typical for her to be on walks for 30 to 40 minutes, so when she wasn’t back after roughly an hour, Jeff Rice became worried. He testified that he went outside and called for his wife and the dog and walked down the street a little in both directions, but because he was watching their son, he didn’t go far.

Then the smile fell from Jeff Rice’s face and tears welled in his eyes as he began to tell the court about what happened next.

MIRIAM RICE
Rice
Image
“I called the police and said my wife was missing,” he said.

Tears continued to overwhelm him as he talked about the search for his wife in the following days. Miriam Rice’s body was found five days later at Pinhook Lagoon by one of the many family members who came to town to help look. Her cause of death was ruled severe blunt force trauma to the head. Jeff Rice said he had to identify his wife by her wedding rings.

Not only was Monday the first time Jeff Rice faced his wife’s alleged killer, it was the first time he’s been in South Bend since he moved in 1992. Investigators have said residents practically ran him out of town, accusing him in his wife’s death.

In court Monday, he simply said the memories of his wife were too painful for him to stay in the area after her death.


The defense did little questioning of Jeff Rice, as well as three police officers who were some of the first involved in the case. In his brief opening arguments, defense attorney Sean Hilgendorf told the jury they will hear evidence of the senselessness of the crime. What he will present, he said, is who did what and why.

Brewster was not the only one charged in Miriam Rice’s death. George Kearney, 77, was also charged and pleaded guilty in March to murder, but he died in the St. Joseph County Jail of a terminal illness while awaiting sentencing.

When first charged about a year ago, Brewster and Kearney both said the other one killed Miriam Rice while they were camping at Pinhook with Brewster’s three kids, according to a probable cause affidavit. In Brewster’s story to police, she said they left their campsite in a van and she admitted she was present when Kearney saw the woman and grabbed her, rendering her unconscious. Brewster said Kearney then returned them to the campsite, left and later returned without Miriam Rice.

But three decades after the murder, two of Brewster’s children spoke with police telling a different story. Brewster’s son, who was 6 at the time, told police that he was in the van with his mother and Kearney when Miriam Rice was killed. He said Kearney grabbed the woman and smashed her head into the side of the vehicle and put her inside. Kearney then yelled at Brewster to kill her, according to the son, and his mother began to beat her in the head with tools.

The son told police he has been traumatized by the murder his entire life and never told anyone because Kearney threatened to kill him, according to court documents.

Brewster’s daughter, who was 7 at the time, said her mother, Kearney and her brother left the campsite to get food, leaving her to watch her 2-year-old brother. Brewster, Kearney and the boy then returned to the campsite covered in blood. The daughter told investigators that her brother looked traumatized and would say only “something bad happened.”

Both children, who are now in their mid-30s, are expected to testify against their mother. The trial is expected to end Thursday.

lwright@SBTinfo.com 574-235-6324 @LWrightSBT
https://www.southbendtribune.com/news/p ... apbb4LExD4
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Happy Mom » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:12 pm

Image


POS who killed Miriam Rice in 1988
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Re: The Unsolved Murder of Miriam Rice in 1988

Postby Happy Mom » Tue Jun 11, 2019 9:17 pm

'She had no choice': son who says he witnessed South Bend murder says mother was forced to kill Miriam Rice in 1988
By Lincoln Wright South Bend Tribune 8 hrs ago


Image


SOUTH BEND — Robert South tries not to sleep. Thirty years after he watched his mom, Barbara Brewster, beat 28-year-old Miriam Rice to death, he says, he still sees the horrific scene when he closes his eyes.

“She was begging for them to stop,” he said. “She was begging with her last breath.”

Tuesday was the second day of testimony in 61-year-old Brewster’s murder trial. She is accused of killing Rice in 1988.

Although South, who was 6 at the time of the murder, testified as a witness for the state and said his mother never cared for him and his siblings, he believes his mother had no choice that evening.

The night of June 24, 1988, Rice was out walking her dog near Pinhook Park. South was camping at the park with his mom, sister, brother and George Kearney.

About 11 p.m., South said, Brewster and Kearney left their makeshift campsite in Kearney’s van and took him to get something to eat, leaving his siblings behind. Kearney and Brewster were fighting as they drove off and the next thing he knew Kearney had stopped.

Then, South testified, he saw Kearney grab a woman who was walking. He dragged her by her hair and slammed her head into the side of the van. Then he threw the woman into the van and demanded Brewster kill her.

“George told my mom she could kill her or he could kill all of us,” he said. “She had no choice.”

South said Brewster was scared and that he didn’t think she would ever hurt someone if it wasn’t for Kearney. Killing the woman and not letting Kearney kill him is one of the only acts of kindness his mother has shown him in his life, South testified.

South said he thinks Kearney did it as a “sick way” of keeping control over his mother because “fear is all we knew with that guy.”

Kearney was also charged with murder in Rice’s death. He pleaded guilty in March, but died in the St. Joseph County Jail awaiting sentencing.

After killing Rice, South said, the three returned to Pinhook Park.

Paula Brooks, Brewster’s daughter who was 7 at the time, also testified Tuesday. She was the one who stayed behind at the campsite with her younger brother.

Brooks burst into tears as she began to talk about that June night some 30 years ago. She had put her brother to bed in their tent when, she said, she heard a woman screaming.

“I heard a woman begging for her life and the life of her baby,” Brooks said.

Rice was four months pregnant when she was killed.

When her brother, Brewster and Kearney returned, they were covered in blood. Brooks said she was told to clean her brother off. All he would say was “something bad happened” and Brewster wouldn’t tell her anything.

The next day, she said, her mother made her clean a large pool of blood out of the van. After cleaning the van and burning their clothes, she said, they went to her aunt’s house.

She told her aunt about hearing the screams and Brewster and Kearney coming back covered in blood. A couple of days later, Brooks was watching the news with her aunt and Brewster when a story about Rice’s disappearance came on.

Brooks said she told her aunt “this is what I was talking about.” Brewster then slapped her and told her to be quiet, she said.

It took 30 years for charges to be filed in Rice’s homicide, but Tuesday it was revealed two tips were made to Crime Stoppers around the time of Rice’s disappearance that named Brewster and Kearney.

Sam Walsh, who worked for Crime Stoppers in 1988, testified that on June 28 and 30 tips were received that said Kearney and Brewster were at Pinhook Park around the time Rice went missing on June 24. Walsh said the anonymous person went on to say Kearney said he wanted to skip town because he had killed someone. Rice's body was found near the Pinhook Lagoon on June 29.

During testimony, it was not asked if the tip was investigated at the time. What the defense did stress was that Brewster was not listed as the suspect on the Crime Stoppers tip sheet. Kearney was listed as the suspect and Brewster was only named as being in Pinhook Park with Kearney.

Tuesday it was revealed that Brooks’ aunt, Brewster’s sister, was the one who provided the tips. Helen Partin said she made the two initial calls and even made a couple of more calls sometime later before moving from South Bend in 1995. She said she wanted to remain anonymous, which is why she never went directly to a detective.

It was Brett Coppins, a private investigator who volunteers time working cold cases for the St. Joseph County Metro Homicide Unit, who eventually connected Brewster and Kearney to Rice’s death.

Kearney had served 27 years in prison on an unrelated crime, but after being released, he approached Metro Homicide in March 2016 to “clear the air,” saying Brewster had killed a woman, according to court documents.

Coppins was not the investigator, but sat in on the interview with Kearney. Then in January 2017, Coppins reopened the Rice murder case and found the two Crime Stoppers tip sheets with Kearney and Brewster’s names.

That led them to Brooks, who then connected them to South and the case had its first major break in almost three decades.

Brewster’s trial is expected to wrap up today. If found guilty, she faces 45 to 65 years in prison.

lwright@SBTinfo.com

574-235-6324

@LWrightSBT

/www.southbendtribune.com/news/publicsafety/she-had-no-choice-son-who-says-he-witnessed-south/article_66fb75af-7bad-506d-a95a-8786b48c50cc.html?fbclid=IwAR1dqqp65XAmb_qlwRgJ3y2s_xwE3p-QRK7F_dFNSIAL0wo9hMBKMndOAbE
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