photo by BULLmanX PhotographyA couple of hours ago the Associated Press confirmed what a few bloggers had assumed: A body unearthed yesterday from a make-shift grave in Rhode Island has been identified as the remains of missing British tourist Adrian Alun Dennis Exley. Police found the grave after Gary LeBlanc, of Lynn, Massachusetts, committed suicide, leaving a note behind with details as to where to look for Exley's body.
From the moment I heard about his disappearance, something struck me about the case and the absolute silence that followed in media. I'm not sure if it was the fact that Exley had apparently flown to the United States to meet a couple of people he only knew through a leather site on the internet (something that media might have shied away from delving into), or the fact that he was a tourist with few established roots in the United States. The fact is that I only found out about it through community e-mail list postings and blogs.
Over the last couple of days this has changed drastically with the AP and other international agencies picking up on the details. A bit late, if you ask me, and it makes me wonder if such an end could have been prevented had media focused on the case the moment that the Lynn Police Department sent out its missing persons alert back in May.
An autopsy is pending as to the cause of death but the reports leading up to the finding of the body do mention that evidence at LeBlanc's house indicate he was murdered.
Some may say that here at Blabbeando we might focus a bit much on cases of violence in our communities. Maybe it's because we have first-hand experience in losing friends to violence and intimately aware on how these situations affects family and friends.
In any case, this is truly sad and I just hope that his family and friends know that our thoughts are with them.
[NOTE: Live Journaler Chaz, who has been quoted in several of the articles to which I have linked in the past couple of days, graciously re-posts my entry above on his LJ blog, and has some interesting thoughts on media, the leather community and on why he chose to speak up regarding this case. Go here if you want to read his thoughts]
- Body of missing British tourist found in RI (MetroWest Daily News, MA, June 29, 2006)
- Lynn probe of Brit's death active (The Daily Item, June 29, 2006)
- Adrian Alun Dennis Exley's funeral in the UK (July 14, 2006)