“You should get help,” the woman, a house mother at a local fraternity, told the man. Cops can be protective about their cases, fearing that information could be leaked that would jeopardize their investigations.
It had cost her the newfound independence she was savoring after a life in foster homes. Each ring of the phone seemed to announce another friendship, lost. Galbraith spotted the victim standing in the thin sunlight outside her ground floor apartment. She had been alone in her apartment the previous evening. Afterward, he ordered her to brush her teeth and wash herself in the shower. Galbraith listened to the woman with a sense of alarm. The woman underwent a special forensic examination to collect more DNA evidence. But there was still the issue of the woman’s story. Or fabricating a ruse to cover a sexual encounter gone wrong?
A friend from 10th grade called to ask: How could you lie about something like that? She doubted herself, wondering if there was something in her that needed to be fixed. She was young, dressed in a brown, full-length coat. After cooking green mung beans for dinner, she curled up in bed for a marathon of “Desperate Housewives” and “The Big Bang Theory” until drifting off. The attack was so heinous; the attacker so practiced. Sitting close to her in the front seat of the car, Galbraith carefully brushed the woman’s face with long cotton swabs to collect any DNA traces that might remain. Before she left with a nurse, the woman warned Galbraith, “I think he’s done this before.” Galbraith returned to the crime scene. As she headed home that night, Galbraith’s mind raced. In that way, rape cases were unlike most other crimes.
Before he left, he showed the student how he broke in through a sliding glass door. He worked in Westminster, some 15 miles to the northeast. Shannon, a real estate agent and longtime foster mom, had met Marie through meetings for kids with troubled pasts and had sensed a kindred spirit. She didn’t have to be pushed out the door to school. “Our personalities didn’t match at first either,” Marie says. For me it seems like people read me differently than I see myself.” Peggy, who had received a file two to three inches thick documenting Marie’s history, was surprised at how well she was coping.
He suggested she put a dowel into the bottom track to keep out future intruders. Golden and Westminster were middle class bedroom towns wedged between Denver’s downtown skyscrapers and the looming Rockies. As David listened, he realized that the details of the case were unsettlingly familiar. She reports not knowing much about her biological mother, who she said would often leave her in the care of boyfriends. “I moved a lot when I was younger,” Marie says in an interview. About two of those and probably 10 or 11 foster homes.” “I was on like seven different drugs. But on the first day, a support counselor came to the school and told Marie the family had lost its foster care license. Shannon and Marie were both “kind of goofy,” Shannon says. We were a lot alike.” Despite all Marie had been through, “she wasn’t bitter,” Shannon says. But no matter her affection for Marie, Shannon knew they couldn’t keep her, because the foster child already in their home required so much care. Marie was into boys, drawing and music, be it rock, country, or Christian. Marie figures her happiest years were when she was 16 and 17, and the happiest day may have been one she spent with her best friend, another high school student who was teaching Marie the fine points of camerawork.