Barre City police release timeline of investigation into Ralph Jean-Marie disappearance

Local News

The Barre City Police Department said officers from nine law enforcement agencies have been involved in the search for Ralph Jean-Marie, who was last seen more than a year ago at Barre motel.

In an updated timeline of the case posted Friday to the department’s Facebook page, Barre City police said 66 interviews and thirty searches have been conducted since Jean-Marie went missing in April 2020. Investigators have also gone to court numerous times to request warrants subpoenas and other orders.

In April, on the one-year anniversary of Jean-Marie’s disappearance, Barre Police Chief Timothy Bombardier said the department was renewing it’s efforts to find the missing man. But he said investigators still had little to go on.

“I think on the one-year anniversary it’s the right time to bring it back up and bring it to the forefront of people’s thoughts,” he said.

The lengthy timeline released Friday starts at 1 a.m. April 13, when Jean-Marie apparently left the room he shared with his girlfriend at the Hollow Inn & Motel in Barre. Later that day, according to the timeline, Jean-Marie called an out of state medical provider to refill a prescription at a local pharmacy. The prescription was never picked up.

It wasn’t until two days later, on the evening of April 15, that police received the first report of the missing man.

According to the timeline, police have since interviewed an unknown number of “people of interest” and sought court orders for evidence. A criminal inquest began in August after police determined foul play was likely. Multiple subpoenas were issued.

Bombardier has said he believes there are people who know something about the disappearance, but they have for whatever reason not come forward. As it is, Barre City Attorney Rory Thibault said authorities still do not have a crime scene, a body or a weapon. 

“We’re not any closer today to the truth than when things were first reported on or about the 16th of April 2020,” said

Barre police are offering a $5,000 reward for information regarding Jean-Marie’s disappearance. Bombardier encourages anyone with information to call the Barre City Police Department directly at (802) – 476 – 6613. Tips may also be submitted anonymously by texting “VTIPS” to 274637 or at the Vermont Tip Line.

TIMELINE:

  • 4/13/2020 @0100 Alleged time RJM walked off from the Hollow.·
  • 4/13/20: @ approx. 1400 hrs. subject called (RJM?) out of state medical provider to refill RX at area pharmacy. They were never picked up.·
  • 4/15/2020: @2108 Initial report of RJM missing initial search of area and hospital to try and locate RJM.·
  • 4/16/20: State official spoke with POI while attempting to contact Ralph Jean-Marie and was advised that he had gone to the store.·
  • 4/17/2020: Detective(s) conducted follow-up interview(s)·
  • 4/17/2020: Officers and K-9 searched riverbank and falls area, Rotary Park, and woods behind Hollow Inn.·
  • 4/17/2020: VIC to release of missing person flyer.·
  • 4/21/2020: Officer continued to search bike path and surrounding wooded areas of falls. Walked the riverbanks from Bridge Street to falls. Checked homeless camp sites.·
  • 4/21/2020: Detectives continued with interviews of POIs and took steps to preserve potential evidence.·
  • 4/22/2020: Detectives continued interview(s) with POI and possible witnesses as well as looking for additional sources of information or potential evidence.·
  • 4/22/2020: Detectives checked Rock of Ages quarries.·
  • 4/23/2020: Detectives checked additional locations within the city including an abandoned house.·
  • 4/23/2020: Officers checked a sand pit.·
  • 4/27/2020 to 04/29/200 Detectives receive information from multiple sources of potential sightings of RJM. All are a dead end.·
  • 4/29/2020: Detectives continue to follow-up with more interviews and check multiple locations for potential video.·
  • 4/30/2020: Officers meet with Family members at BCPD.·
  • 4/30/2020: Detectives continue to gather info on POIs.·
  • 5/01/2020: Detectives continue to try and locate RJM through outside sources.·
  • 5/01/2020: Press release sent later came back as bounced out by the server not received.·
  • 5/03/2020: to 05/05/20 Officers checked several areas regarding a report of a strange odor. Detectives checked the same area a second time and walked the area.·
  • 5/07/2020: to 05/11/20 Detective conduct multiple interviews of both POI and potential witnesses. ·
  • 5/11/2020: Forwarded Press release to newstips@mynbc5.com·
  • 5/13/2020: Receive assistance with search CSST and Drones.·
  • 5/14/2020: to 05/21/20 Officer continue to secure potential evidence for future use and involve multiple in state and out of state departments.·
  • 5/26/2020: Press Release to TA.·
  • 5/29/2020 to 06/15/20 Detectives continued additional interviews and tracked down multiple tips/rumors, some of these resulting in additional searches within Washington County.·
  • 6/25/2020 to 08/20/20 Detectives continue to investigate a multitude of tips/rumors, conducting interviews of both POIs and potential witnesses. These lead to additional searches again involving outside resources, including a dive team.·
  • 8/17/20 Press release again.·
  • 8/25/20 Press release updated to reflect the $5,000 reward secured from outside sources by the chief.·
  • 8/27/2020 search of pond in Washington County·
  • 8/27/2020: to 08/28/20 Detectives continue with interviews and to track down leads regarding the potential location(s) where RJM may be. Officer also involved multiple court processes to secure information during this block of time.·
  • 9/2/2020 to 10/12/20 Detectives involved multiple court processes to secure information during this block of time as well as conducting additional interviews and searches.·
  • 9/11/20 press release from Washington County SA regarding court process.·
  • 10/13/2020 to 12/03/20 Detectives contact out of state agency for additional information/assistance and are continuing with multiple interviews. Officers also involved in securing potential evidence through the available court processes.·
  • 12/2/2020 to 1203/20 Detective(s) spoke with family members.·
  • 1/7/2021 to 01/15/21 spoke with outside agency to explore other investigative options and have a review of the case fact.· 1/12/2021: Detective spoke with family members.·
  • 01/18/21 to 02/28/21 continue to exam case facts and make attempts to glean additional information from known POIs.·
  • 3/16/2021 to 04/08/21 Detectives continue with tracking down potential leads and conduct an additional search.·
  • 4/7/2021- spoke with family members about upcoming press conference on 04/13/21.·
  • 04/09/21 As of this date Detectives and Officers from BCPD had conducted fifty-six interviews involved seven outside agencies, conducted twenty-seven searches, and involved the court in additional processes.·
  • 4/13/2021- Detectives receive additional information about a potential witness and possible location(s) to search.·
  • 4/13/2021- Additional involvement with SA and court processes·
  • 4/15/21 to 04/16/21 Detectives investigate more tips regarding case.·
  • 04/19/21 contacted additional outside agencies regarding assistance and the potential of increasing reward funds.·
  • 4/21/2021 to 04/29/21 Detective met with additional potential witnesses and conducted interviews. Requested additional assistance from WCSA.·
  • 4/27/21 – Request to court for inquest subpoena of witnesses #2 & 3.·
  • 05/04/21– Inquest of witnesses #2 and #3. Witness #3 did not appear and will be rescheduled.·
  • 05/19/21– Request to court for inquest subpoena of witness #4 and related documentary evidence.·
  • 5/7/2021 to 5/11/2021 Detectives continue to meet with potential witnesses and POI.·
  • 05/21/21 As of this date Police have involved nine other agencies conducted sixty-six interviews, thirty searches and requested 17 court actions/orders (warrants, subpoenas, inquest, and other orders)

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