Follow-up #IV Karen Caughlin

A compilation: 

A lot of information has come in either by email or comments that have not been posted for good reasons. However, all those bits and pieces of information fill in some of the blanks we have in the posts and clarify other issues. I have made a compilation below:

Re the 1970/71 Chrysler, Plum Crazy/purple car:

Remember that no one saw this car and yes, it could have mistaken for blue or black because it was dark outside. There were paint chips found embedded in Karen’s sweater and coat. That’s why there has been a focus on such a car.

The Toronto Forensic Lab and Chrysler Canada determined that the paint chips were from this make models, year and colour of car. It was also determined that the paint chips were that of factory paint used at the Windsor Chrysler plant during these years (1970/1971.) So, the car could have been made and or imported to the USA but the OPP did not extend any inquiries into the USA. They also did not alert the USA border to what kind of car they were looking for.

Also, local police ignored the fact about kids racing in Sarnia and Port Huron over the weekends. Now how crucial do you think that was to Karen’s case? Perhaps the outcome would have been different if OPP would have alerted the USA authorities and the media to the year, make, model and colour of car they were looking for. Not doing that for one year provided some people with plenty of time to depose of the car involved, don’t you agree?

Re: did the OPP alert body shops and body repair shops:

There are different body repair shops in business in 1974 and no one from OPP ever interviewed them. One particular body shop stated he dealt a lot with muscle cars back in the 70’s. Another in Petrolia (where Karen was dumped) stated he was never interviewed either.

Re: factory paint or specialty paint:

Specialty paint jobs on vehicles outside of the years that the colour was designated by Chrysler, were called: Code 999 special ordered paint. Behind the front bumper would be “Code 999.”  So, if in 1972, 1973, or 1974, I wanted a Chrysler car painted Plum Crazy (which was only offered in 1970 and 1971) I could order this at the time I ordered the car. This car would then be labeled Code 999 special order.

The car is painted in this colour right at the plant so it is in fact “factory paint.” This is THE reason why those chips found on Karen should have been run through the RCMP Paint Chip Data Base to make sure OPP was looking for the right year car. What if the paint composition showed up another year car, up until 1974 of course? Those 1974 cars would have been released from the plant sometime late in 1973.

Re: Did Mr. Kells see the car or did he hear how many doors close? 

There was a vehicle in front of the Kells’ family house around 5:30am, March 16, 1974. Mr. Kells heard a car running in front of his house. He’s on a country side road so it would be pitching dark out there and very quiet. The car turned its lights on just as Kells turned his porch light on and the car drove back towards where Karen’s body was found.

Re: was the original crime scene ever found?

No original crime scene was ever found, where Karen was killed.

Re: where any areas not searched?

The near-by Indian Reserve was not searched either. Burnt out cars were normal on the Reserve back in the 70’s.

Re: was a toxicology test performed on Karen’s body?

The toxicology test showed no drugs or alcohol in Karen’s body. There was also no food found in her stomach.

Re: were Karen’s hands bagged and examined during the autopsy? 

Unknown, still digging. My guess? No.

Re: was there any indication that Karen put up a fierce fight and that in that fight, her jacket and shoes came off?

Karen had no defensive wounds. This could mean she was caught off guard and clubbed over the head which would be consistent with her head injuries or, she was rendered unconscious and thus unable to defend herself.

Re: Karen’s exact height and what platform shoes would have added

Maybe 2” to Karen’s height.

Re: Karen’s purse, was anything missing, and was the purse tested with modern technology?

The purse was re-examined in 2007. No prints were retrievable. The purse was laid out in a ditch under very moist and light snow conditions.

Don’t know if the sweater inside her purse was ever examined for trace evidence, still digging.