The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

January 23, 2014

How a living fugitive was declared dead

(Continued)

So if there was no body, and the FBI believed that Price was alive, how was it that he came to be dead?

Normally in Florida, a person must be missing for five years before he or she is presumed dead. In some cases, though, the timeline can be sped up. If someone “was exposed to a specific peril of death” — such as a plane crash — the court can declare the person dead earlier.

“Six months is really fast,” said Steven Weisbart, senior vice president and chief economist at the Insurance Information Institute. “Most of these take a lot longer.”

There was evidence, though, that suggested Price was dead.

In a letter that was part of Price’s death file in the Hamilton County court — and presumably sent to his wife, Rebekah — he apologized for not telling her he planned to kill himself and said he did not want a funeral. Price wrote he had “no other option” and had been suffering from depression.

He could not figure out “the best way to exit,” he wrote, but said it made sense to spend his last day in one of his favorite places. So, he wrote, he rode the Key West Express in the Gulf of Mexico.

“It is a peaceful and beautiful place and near where I have some very fond memories. This seemed like the most peaceful way to go,” he wrote.

“When you hear that train whistle blow, remember that I love you with all my heart.”

Authorities said Price purchased weights and a dive belt. There was video of him getting on the Key West Express ferry, but no evidence that he got off.

His last location was on the ferry’s path, according to cellphone records. He said in a letter that he would leave his phone on, in a plastic bag, so he could be found via GPS. But an “aggressive” search that cost the Coast Guard $173,000 did not turn up his body.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
State, national news
  • Congress reaches agreement on VA reform With days left before the August break, congressional leaders unveiled a $17 billion bipartisan compromise Monday to fix the tattered Department of Veterans Affairs.

    July 28, 2014

  • Residency case targets state GOP legislator A residency dispute involving a Minnesota legislator has landed in court and could put a Republican-held seat in contention at a time when the party is fighting to wrest chamber control from Democrats.

    July 28, 2014

  • 8,000 get false notice of health care cancellation ST. PAUL — More than 8,000 low-income Minnesotans received erroneous notices that their health coverage would be temporarily canceled if they don't pay up. A July 17 notice warned MinnesotaCare subscribers that they faced a four-month coverage locko

    July 28, 2014

  • ND deputy hurt in scuffle Suspect charged with assaulting, trying to disarm law officer

    July 28, 2014

  • Fergus Falls plans deer hunt Hunters are selected by a lottery, pay $20 fee

    July 28, 2014

  • Man killed in home invasion Homeowner's son in Ray, Minn., fires fatal shot

    July 28, 2014

  • Charges filed in July 8 fatal Dodge Center woman criminally charged in fatal car crash

    July 28, 2014

  • American doctor in Africa gets treatment for Ebola BOONE, N.C. (AP) — An American doctor infected with the deadly Ebola disease received intensive treatment Sunday in West Africa and was in stable condition, talking to his medical team and working on his computer, a spokeswoman for an aid group said.

    July 27, 2014

  • Salmonella Outbreak Trial [Duplicate] Trial in salmonella outbreak to start in Georgia ATLANTA (AP) — Three people accused of scheming to manufacture and ship salmonella-tainted peanuts that killed nine people, sickened more than 700 and prompted one of the largest food recalls in history are set to go to trial this week in south Georg

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pitfalls emerge in health insurance renewals WASHINGTON — For the 8 million people who persevered through all the technical travails in the new health insurance exchanges and managed to sign up for coverage in 2014, their policies will probably automatically renew come November when open enroll

    July 27, 2014