The shattering crime story that shocked the nation: the Thomas Capano murder case
On a June evening in 1996, 30-year-old Anne Marie Fahey, secretary to the governor of Delaware, vanished without a trace following a restaurant rendezvous with her secret lover of more than two years: Thomas Capano. One of Wilmington's most prominent and respected figures, a millionaire attorney and former state prosecutor, "Tommy" was a charming, softspoken family man. But in the weeks and months that followed Fahey's disappearance, investigators would gradually uncover the shocking truth: Capano was a steely manipulator driven by power and greed and capable of brutal murder. In a riveting narrative expertly documented by probing interviews, diary entries, and e-mail correspondence, and with superb insight into the twisted motivations of a killer, Ann Rule chronicles a real-life drama of Shakespearian proportions: ambitions fall, love turns to obsession, family names are tainted, the façade of success crumbles and a beautiful but vulnerable young woman pays the ultimate price in a convoluted and deadly relationship.
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About the Author
Ann Rule wrote thirty-five New York Times bestsellers, all of them still in print. Her first bestseller was The Stranger Beside Me, about her personal relationship with infamous serial killer Ted Bundy. A former Seattle police officer, she used her firsthand expertise in all her books. For more than three decades, she was a powerful advocate for victims of violent crime. She lived near Seattle and passed away in 2015.
Date of Birth:October 22, 1935
Place of Birth:Lowell, Michigan
Education:Creative Writing Program, University of Washington
Read an Excerpt
Wilmington residents like to say that everyone who lives there is connected by only three degrees of separation, and it's true. If everyone in town doesn't actually know everyone else, they are at least related by marriage, employment, or coincidence. It would seem that keeping a secret in Wilmington would be akin to whispering it to a tabloid reporter, and yet deep and complicated clandestine relationships have survived Wilmington's sharpest eyes.
Perhaps because they know one another so well, Wilmingtonians can be initially standoffish to strangers, who don't fit into their grapevine of interconnected relationships. To truly belong, one has to be born and bred in Delaware and stay there until, as the natives say, "Mealey's carries you out." For many neighborhoods, Mealey's is the funeral parlor of choice.
The city's motto is carved into a sign on Delaware Avenue: WELCOME TO WILMINGTON, A PLACE TO BE SOMEBODY, a slogan that is either wildly ambiguous or optimistic. Wilmington is burnished with its patina of history, rife with somebodies who have made names for themselves.
Wilmington is almost as old as America itself, the largest city in a state so small that it has only three counties, a state 110 miles long and not much more than thirty-five miles across at its widest point. Delaware's land area is 1,982 square miles (compared to Montana's 145,556). But Delaware was the very first state to enter the Union on December 7, 1787 and it was a well-established region by then. It is an insular and even provincial state, fiercely proud. It always has been.
Delaware is a melting pot of cultures and origins, which is fitting for the first state. Sailing under the Dutch flag, Henry Hudson discovered Delaware in 1609, but the Swedes took over, at least temporarily, in 1638. England laid claim to Delaware three decades later and transferred its three counties to William Penn in 1682. Delaware fought as a separate state in the Revolutionary War, and although it was a slave state, it never seceded from the Union in the Civil War. There is, of course, a powerful French influence that permeates the state. In 1802, Eleuthère Irénée du Pont built a little gunpowder mill close by the shores of the Brandywine Creek, planting the first seed of a chemical industrial empire that would define Delaware ever after, bringing it prosperity and security.
Wilmington is a beautiful city, suspended between early-day history and the year 2000. It has block after block of row houses, most of them painted brick, with colorfully contrasting doors. Large private homes are built of brick or stone and wood, with wide porches, and the somewhat narrow streets are shadowy tunnels between grand old trees. The trees and bushes and houses and even some mammoth rocks have all been there so long that a feeling of permanence pervades everything.
Situated on Interstate 95 between the metropolises of Philadelphia and Baltimore, Wilmington has the sense of a city far larger than it really is; its population never topped a hundred thousand, and the race riots in 1968 blunted its growth when the national guard occupied the city for nine months. Since then, the population has steadily but inexorably dropped, to under seventy thousand today. The land in Wilmington is divided into both neighborhoods and areas that are almost towns in themselves. There is Brandywine Hundred, Mill Creek Hundred, Christiana Hundred; some say the names come from Revolutionary War days and signify that the regions could be counted on to muster a hundred men to fight. Other natives say it is only a geographical boundary.
Although Dover is the state's capital, Wilmington is its heart and blood supply, laced with waterways the Delaware River, the Brandywine Creek, the Christina River, and the Red Clay Creek and dotted with swaths of parkland. Brandywine Creek even divides the strata of society in Wilmington, with everything west of the creek north of Wilmington considered far more desirable. This is the Chateau Country where the du Ponts have their estates.
Cemeteries older than memory, with antiquated tombstones, rest where the city has grown around them. Professional offices are located in skyscrapers and in two-hundred-year-old one-story buildings, juxtaposed in the same block.
Wilmington looks like a major city. The magnificent Hotel du Pont, called simply "the hotel" by natives, takes up an entire block and challenges any hotel in America for elegance. The wind roars between narrow canyons created by the soaring downtown buildings that have sprung up in the last quarter century, and patriot Caesar Rodney rides forever atop his faithful horse in the square named for him in front of the grand hotel, while horseless and carless residents wait for buses beneath Rodney Square's flowering trees. Across another street, the Daniel Herrmann Courthouse fills its own block. In the late nineties, three major criminal proceedings would draw so many spectators, reporters, and photographers that even that huge courthouse would be crammed to its marble walls.
Despite the early Dutch, Swedish, and English settlers, Delaware today has as much Irish and Italian ethnicity as anything else. The tremendous success of the du Ponts opened doors to immigrants looking for a better life, and boom followed boom. The du Ponts (who have since capitalized the D: DuPont for the company) kept their workers from feeling the recessions that hit other parts of America. None of their employees had to worry about health care. Until the late 1970s they also owned both of the state's daily newspapers the Evening Journal and the Morning News. They founded the Delaware Trust Company and the Wilmington Trust Company, and they controlled high society. It was a cradle-to-grave security blanket. E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. was known as "the company," and few Delawareans minded that almost everything stemmed from that source or that the du Ponts controlled where they stood on the economic or social ladder. Membership in the Wil-mington Country Club came only with a tap on the shoulder from the company. It remains the most exclusive club in Delaware, and members are held to certain uncompromising standards. One commercial enterprise that came close to DuPont was Bancroft Mills.
Downtown Wilmington was the center of the world for business and shopping, before shopping malls and suburban sprawl took over and left even the grand old Wanamaker's department store an empty shell. After the Second World War, Wilmington changed, along with the rest of the country; cities all over America did. And some families would bloom while others faded.
The Irish and the Italians contributed greatly to the abundant traditions that make Wilmington such a remarkably alive city, full of celebration and mourning, passion and rumor. The annual St. Anthony's festival in June attracts almost everyone in the city; there they eat meatball sandwiches, sausage and greens, drink beer and wine, listen to music, and catch up with old friends. It is a festival where they can go every year and know they will find people they have lost touch with.
The Friends of Ireland St. Patrick's Day dinner is another big draw, although it's considerably more sedate. In the fifties, Lucy and Walter Brady and their friends wanted to change the stereotyped image of the Irish as mill hands and blue-collar workers who spent St. Patrick's Day sitting in bars and getting drunk. The Bradys initiated the grand St. Patrick's Day dinner, an opulent feast in the Gold Ballroom of the Hotel du Pont. The local Catholic and Episcopal bishops, along with the governor of Delaware, the mayor of Wilmington, and every other important political figure, were present. Dancers from the McAleer School of Irish Dance entertained a crowd dressed in their finest.
One of the couples who faithfully attended the St. Patrick's Day dinner was Robert Fahey and his wife, Kathleen. Ex-mayor Bill McLaughlin, over eighty now, recalled how the Faheys met and fell in love. Sitting on his favorite stool at O'Friel's Pub, McLaughlin smiled as he remembered. "Anne Marie used to say to me, 'If it weren't for you, I wouldn't be here now,' and I guess that's true I introduced her parents.
"Robert Sr. was a handsome young man, a salesman for IBM, as I recall, and he came calling to the DuPont plant in the early fifties," McLaughlin said. "Kathleen was working as a secretary in the chemical division, and he saw her there, and he thought she was the most beautiful girl he'd ever seen. She was a very pretty girl. He asked me to introduce him, and I did."
Kathleen's parents were both born in Ireland, and she had a soft brogue herself. It only made her more attractive. She was eight years younger than Robert, who was thirty.
"They got married in about 1953, and they had good years," McLaughlin recalled. "Really good years..."
For a while there were abundant and happy years. The Faheys bought a new house in McDaniel Crest, a neighborhood close by State Road 202 the Concord Pike in north Wilmington. In the postwar building boom, whole streets of houses were sprouting up overnight there on acreage that had long been farmland owned by the Weldin and Talley families. The Faheys' first house was small, a little over sixteen hundred square feet. It was more than adequate at first, but it soon seemed to shrink, as their children came along.
Robert switched to selling insurance. With his natural charm, he could sell anything. Kathleen stayed at home as most young wives did in the fifties. They had six children in a dozen years: Kevin first, in 1954, Mark in 1956, Robert Jr. in 1958, Kathleen in 1960, Brian in 1961, and the baby, Anne Marie Sinead Fahey, in 1966.
"Most of us kids were two years apart," Robert Jr. would remember. "Our house wasn't that big, and it seemed like there was never enough money."
Lucy and Walter Brady, strong proponents of preserving Irish heritage, met the young Fahey family through their friends the Whalens; all of them were interested in honoring their Irish roots, and Robert and Kathleen were enthusiastic about a program Lucy and Walter helped organize to bring Irish schoolteachers to America for a summer's visit. During the hot and humid Delaware summers, Robert and Kathleen opened their home to a number of the teachers from Ireland.
The Faheys had a good time together. They attended church faithfully for twelve years at St. Mary Magdalen Church on Concord Pike, and Kathleen tried to plan picnics and outings, always with a bunch of kids with curly heads bobbing in the backseat. If there was any precursor of trouble, it was Robert's problem with alcohol; if he was not an alcoholic yet, he had most of the danger signs. Kathleen tried to cope with it. At first his drinking didn't interfere with his job or with the family. They loved each other still, and their children were all exceptionally bright and attractive.
The five or more years between her siblings and little Anne Marie or Annie, as they called her put them virtually in different generations when they were children. Annie was a beautiful baby with huge blue eyes and a rollicking laugh that seemed too big for such a tiny girl, and her siblings and their friends made a fuss over her because she was the baby, probably the last Fahey baby.
When Anne Marie was born, on January 27, 1966, her mother, Kathleen, was almost thirty-six. The two of them were very close, partly because Kathleen's older five went off to school every day, and she and her baby girl were home together. It was natural that Anne Marie would form a special bond with her mother, even after she too started at Alfred I. du Pont elementary school. They were very much alike, both pretty and full of life and humor, both with a laugh you could hear a block away.
Kathleen was very protective of Annie, maybe because she was the baby. She was an exceptionally pretty little girl with her beautiful eyes, a spattering of freckles, and dark golden hair. Brian and Kathleen were ten and eleven, and their mother made them promise to hold Annie's hand on the way home from school not only across the busy Concord Pike but all the way home. They hated that, but they did it. For extra protection, their mother always let their dog, Butch, out so he could be waiting on the corner to see them home safely.
Rather than say all six of their names when she referred to them, Kathleen had long since divided her children into two groups: Kevin, Robert, and Mark were "the three boys," and Brian, Kathleen, and Annie were "the little ones." Theirs was a safe, warm circle, with their mother the center of their lives; and then everything changed for the Faheys in 1974. Kathleen Fahey became ill with symptoms that seemed innocuous enough at first but which got steadily worse. Unbelievably, tragically, she was diagnosed with lung cancer. She was just in her early forties, and she still had five children at home to raise. Only Kevin, who was twenty, had left.
Anne Marie was eight, and too young to understand how sick her mother was. She knew that she went to the doctor a lot and sometimes was confined in the hospital for a day or two, but her mother always came home, each time a little thinner and paler. Family and friends helped with meals and took care of the children when Kathleen was too weak to do it. Anne Marie was still cosseted in the bosom of the family she had always known, and she was a happy little girl.
Toward the end, Kathleen Fahey was in the hospital for almost two weeks before she was allowed to come home. And then she lay in bed all day, forcing a smile when her children tiptoed into her room. Of all of them, only Anne Marie seemed unaware that her mother had come home to die. No one realized that their little sister was worrying in silence. She asked her best friend, Beth Barnes, if her mother was going to die, and the two little girls tried to reassure each other that, of course, mothers didn't die and leave their children.
But on the gray day of March 16, 1975, Kathleen Fahey did die. Her older daughter and namesake, Kathleen, was fourteen, and would remember that day twenty-four years later: "The day that my mother died, our universe fell out from [under] us."
Anne Marie was two months past her ninth birthday when she lost her mother. Her father didn't want her to see her mother's body being carried from the house, so her uncle James, a Catholic priest, hurriedly took Anne Marie aside and tried to distract her long enough for the hearse from Mealey's to carry her mother away. As a priest, he had spent most of his life comforting the bereaved, but it was a terrible thing for him to accept that his sister, so young, was dead, leaving the little girl behind.
Ann Marie's brother Brian, who was thirteen when their mother died, has always believed that for a long time Anne Marie didn't realize their mother wasn't coming back. As her funeral arrangements were being made, the older children huddled upstairs. "The next day, none of us went to school," Brian said. "But you know, she was outside playing with her friends like it was just a normal day. So I don't think she understood."
Whether she grasped it or not, Anne Marie had just suffered a loss so profound that it would change the course of her life, casting a shadow over a future that had held so much promise. The changes would be subtle at first, at least for a nine-year-old girl, but the pain was already deeply ingrained. When she went back to school, the teacher made an announcement to the class that mortified her: "Anne Marie's lost her mother. Be nice to her."
Beth Barnes, who would remain Anne Marie's best friend for many years, recalled that she didn't want anyone to talk to her about her mother or ask her questions. "I remember how scared she was that we would look at her weird."
Jennifer Bartels was in Anne Marie's class, too, and she and Beth tried to make things better for her. Like Beth, Jennifer would always be in Anne Marie's life and always be her friend.
All of the Fahey children grieved for their mother, then watched their lives metamorphose from a secure middle-class existence to desperate circumstances, in which they would often go hungry. For as long as they could, her sister and brothers tried to keep Anne Marie safe from the bleak realities of their situation. They loved her as siblings, but as time went on, they became almost parent figures, too.
Robert Sr. was bereft without Kathleen. He had lost his anchor, the one person in the world who might have been able to keep him from drinking. The hold alcohol had always had over him grew more tenacious, and he was bitter, sure that life had been so unfair to him that no one could blame him for finding solace in a bottle. He worked less and less; he didn't have the heart to convince other families that they needed to prepare for illness, death, and loss of wages with the judicious choice of life insurance policies, when his own family had been shattered.
The older Fahey children ranged in age from Kevin at twenty-one to Brian at thirteen and they could take care of themselves, although they all were coping with not only the loss of their mother but also the end of their family as they had known it. But Anne Marie was only nine; in a sense, she had lost the most.
With their mother gone, her mother, their grandmother Katherine McGettigan, did her best to help. If only she could have, she would have taken them to live with her, but she had been a widow for over twenty years and had to work hard for her own living. She always had. Along with her brothers, James and Jack, Katherine grew up on a hardscrabble farm in Ireland a place with five horses, a cow, and an acre of land that gave of itself grudgingly. In America, she had gone to work as a maid and a cook.
Katherine lived in Media, Pennsylvania, and she came down to Wilmington once a week to clean and cook for her grandchildren. The Fahey children called her Nan, and less often, Kate. She had worked for some very wealthy families and learned a lot about the niceties of life. She taught Kathleen and Anne Marie how to survive the humid summer nights without air-conditioning by powdering their sheets. Anne Marie faithfully poured talcum powder in her bed, convinced that she really did feel cooler. She would also remember how Nan told her it was important to have a pretty bed, and she dreamed that one day she would have flowered bedspreads and ruffled pillows.
Nan wasn't the cuddly kind of grandmother, and it was just as well. She taught her six grandchildren how to survive in a world where they were virtually on their own. She taught them to be doers who would get out there and make a place for themselves in the world, whatever fate or luck handed them.
"She had great internal strength," Robert Jr. recalled. "She was very shy and very stern, a little like the nuns who were our teachers, but we always knew what to expect from her. We had other adults in our lives who were variable, but Nan was predictable and we could count on her. She taught us a strong work ethic."
In her later years, Katherine McGettigan's job was as a meat wrapper at the A&P supermarket. She was on her feet all day, but the pay was better than she had ever known. Even though she couldn't move the Fahey children into her house in Media, they always knew she was available to them. She had Robert over for dinner every Wednesday night, and Kevin came on Sundays. For lonely boys at college, it meant a lot. Nan made special times for all of her grandchildren, and worried the most about little Annie.
To fill the gaps of what Nan could not do, young Kathleen tried her best to take her mother's place. "I think the tragic loss of our mother brought us closer in a lot of ways, but it was a very turbulent time," she said. "I was fourteen, and I assumed some of the mothering role, and I was ill equipped to handle the responsibility. And there were times that I'm not proud of, but it was just a very difficult time, and I think that anger with the situation we were in we took it out on each other, because there was no one else around."
Anne Marie would remember that in one tussle with Kathleen, her sister stuck the vacuum cleaner so close to her long wavy hair that the suction drew strands of it painfully into the metal tube and they had a hard time untangling it. It was the kind of thing that happens when siblings get on each other's nerves only there was nobody there to step in and play referee. There was no one to look after them.
Most of the time, Anne Marie and Kathleen got along as well as any sisters six years apart would; Kathleen called Anne Annie, and Anne Marie called Kathleen Cass or Kate. Sometimes names in the Fahey family could be confusing because so many of their first names had come down from prior generations.
There always seemed to be someone who tried to help the young Faheys, although their new existence was a pale imitation of the home that their mother had made for them. The Irish community included them in many activities. Along with all of her siblings, Anne Marie took Irish dancing lessons, and one of the other families who took lessons, the Mulherns, had seven children. The first summer after her mother died, Anne Marie visited often with the Mulherns.
"She would go over there for maybe five or six days in a row," Brian recalled, "and then come back for a couple, and that went on all summer."
With seven children already running through the house, one lonely little girl didn't make that much difference, and the family's hospitality was a godsend. Even so, Anne Marie must have begun to see the difference between those who had a real home and children like herself and her siblings, who lived on the edges of other people's lives.
Things at the Fahey house continued to crumble, despite the efforts of the older children to help out. The McDaniel Crest house was among the first things to go, but with help from friends they moved to a bigger house on Nichols Avenue shortly after their mother died.
There were so many things that a family with six children needed, and they all were determined to get an education. But Robert Sr. had come to a point where he wasn't working at all. Their only real income came from insurance payments and pension plans he had purchased in better days. Those would not last forever.
The mortgage payments were still due every month, and so were other bills, for utilities and groceries and clothing. Robert Fahey seemed simply to have given up. Concerned friends and family members continued to help out, thinking that surely he would get himself together before he lost everything.
Copyright © 1999 by Ann Rule
It was after midnight on June 30, 1996, but even so there was a yellow glow behind the sheer curtains framing two small windows on the top floor of 1718 Washington Street in Wilmington, Delaware. That was unusual. The young woman who lived in the third-floor walk-up was known to be an early riser, the first one to arrive at her job, and was almost always in bed well before the eleven-o'clock news flashed on the little television that sat on the radiator near her bed. If the sixty-watt bulbs behind the lacy curtains were whirling red and blue lights, they could not have signaled more alarm to those who knew her patterns.
Silhouettes moved past the windows. There were people in the room, pacing, staring out at the dark street below and the little park beyond, drinking yet another cup of black coffee. Sleep was not an option for any of those who waited there for a knock, a call, anything that might reassure them that the burgeoning dread they felt was only the result of their overactive imaginations.
Fear often begins with the slightest niggle that something taken for granted can no longer be trusted. A slice of a shadow darkens a spot that only a moment before was sunny, and a chill draft destroys what was warm and cozy. What was solid becomes suddenly fragile. It started that way for the brothers, sister, boyfriend, friends, and coworkers of the young woman who lived in that apartment. There was nothing dramatic to go on. She had failed to return a few phone calls, she wasn't home when her boyfriend had called with a last-minute date idea two nights earlier. But gradually they realized that no one had seen or heard from her for at least forty-eight hours.
Anne Marie Fahey was thirty years old; she wasn't a teenager who had to be checked on. Why, then, did her sister and her friends feel such a sense of urgency? They didn't live in one another's hip pockets, didn't always talk on the phone every day.
Anne Marie -- Annie to those close to her -- led a busy life, both professionally and socially. She was Delaware governor Thomas Carper's scheduling secretary, responsible for getting him to all manner of appointments and events on time and for providing him with enough security so that she knew he was safe. She was so efficient and dependable that she'd worked for Carper since the time he was a congressman.
Anne Marie had more than a dozen close friends, a devoted family, and after many disappointments, she believed she had finally found the love she had looked for so long. She lived a life so full and complicated that it was akin to constantly juggling myriad balls in the air. Somehow, she managed it.
The day before -- Friday -- had passed without any real concern, although even Mike Scanlan, the bank executive she told friends she hoped to marry, couldn't seem to catch up with Anne Marie. And he was puzzled and a little hurt when she stood him up for a dinner with her brother Robert's family on Saturday night. He searched his mind for something he might have said to offend her, and couldn't come up with anything. He called Robert to say he hadn't heard from Anne Marie.
Mike -- and Robert and his wife, Susan -- had tried hard to explain Annie's absence with cautious rationalizations. Maybe she had gotten the date mixed up. Perhaps she had been called away to work late; almost everyone else in the governor's office was working through the night on this last weekend in 1996 that the state legislature was in session.
Those who gathered to wait in the strange quiet of Anne Marie Fahey's little apartment thought of a dozen reasons that would mean she was all right and would be coming home soon. But they all knew better. Annie never stood anyone up. She hated to hurt anyone's feelings. If there was one true thing about her, it was that she tried never to worry or offend anyone. Even if it meant that she herself suffered, she thought always of the other person. If she could see how frightened her sister, her boyfriend, and her friends were now, she would have apologized over and over for scaring them.
Anne Marie's older brother Robert Fahey lived a half hour out of Wilmington. He and Susan had expected Annie and Mike for an early dinner that all of them had looked forward to, but they never arrived, nor did they call. This was so unlike Anne Marie -- or Mike for that matter -- that Robert and Susan began to worry. When Susan Fahey called her sister-in-law, all she got was an answering machine.
Mike Scanlan was concerned, too. He had surmised that Anne Marie had been home earlier in the day because he'd driven by her apartment and her car was there. And yet she hadn't returned any of his calls. At 9 P.M. Mike called Annie's older sister, Kathleen Fahey-Hosey.
"Michael called me and asked me if I had heard from Anne. I responded no," Kathleen recalled. "As soon as Michael told me they had plans and that Anne Marie didn't show, I knew something was terribly wrong....She was just so happy with Michael -- Michael was her future. She would never break plans on her own."
Kathleen told Mike she would call him right back, and then she called her sister's friend Ginny Columbus -- who was a coworker at the governor's office -- to see if she knew of any plans Annie might have had. Ginny was instantly alarmed, too, and she called Jill Morrison. Ginny and Jill lived closer to Annie's apartment than Kathleen did, so they volunteered to go over and check on her.
When no one answered their knocks at Anne Marie's apartment, the two women asked her landlady, Theresa Oliver, if she had seen her. Theresa hadn't seen Anne Marie for a day or so, but that wasn't particularly unusual. Anne Marie's step was so light that she could come in through the front door and be up the closed-off stairs to her apartment without anyone hearing her. Now, on Saturday night, Theresa walked up to the third floor and found Anne Marie's door locked, with the dead bolt in place. She opened the door and called Anne Marie's name -- but there was no answer. Fearing that she was intruding, she walked through the living room to the kitchen, peered in the bedroom, but didn't see Anne Marie.
Jill and Ginny immediately called Kathleen back. "The lights are off, Kathleen, and her door was locked," Ginny said. "Annie's not there -- but her car is parked outside."
"OK," Kathleen said, "I'll be right over."
Kathleen then did something that might seem an overreaction; she called the Wilmington Police Department to report Anne Marie as a missing person. The detective on duty told her she would have to come down to the station or call from her sister's apartment. The moment she called Mike Scanlan back, he said he was on his way to pick her up. Both of them felt such a sense of urgency, although they had nothing tangible to go on.
When Kathleen and Mike arrived at Annie's apartment and spoke with Ginny and Jill, they learned that Annie apparently wasn't with anyone they might expect her to be with. With a dull sense of acceptance, they realized that since Thursday night, June 27, Annie hadn't been in any of the places or with any of the people who made up her world as they knew it.
With Kathleen beside her, Theresa Oliver unlocked the dead bolt on the door of Annie's apartment. Kathleen called her name softly.
There was no answer.
A gush of fetid air washed over them, and they involuntarily held their breaths against the foul, rancid odor. It was initially indefinable, but then they smelled garbage and something rotting.
Kathleen rushed first toward the bathroom; all she could think of was that Annie had fallen in the shower and hit her head on something. She flung the door open, clicked on the light, and pulled back the curtain. The shower was empty. Everything in the bathroom was spotless. For some reason, she looked for Annie's toothbrush. It was there, where it always was.
Kathleen moved next to the single bedroom. Annie's bed was all white, with a comforter of white-on-white puffed hearts and ruffly white pillow shams. But it wasn't made the way she usually made it. Maybe it was her imagination, but it looked to Kathleen as if two fists had yanked the comforter up and then pushed it flat, leaving two indentations.
The little television set that Kathleen's husband, Patrick Hosey, had given Annie one Christmas sat in its usual spot on the radiator underneath the bedroom window. There was a new air conditioner there, too, and it was turned on. That was why there was such a chill in the apartment on this hot summer night.
Annie's jewelry boxes were lined up on top of the radiator, as always. Her blouses and dresses hung in the closet from hangers that were all pointing the same direction. Most of her shoes were in their original boxes, where she always kept them, but some of the boxes were scattered on the floor now -- as if she had been in a hurry to change her shoes and intended to put things back together when she got home.
Anne Marie was the first to admit she was a compulsive neat freak. Her friends teased her and called her Anal Annie when she went through her little rituals. She arranged her CDs alphabetically, stacked her pennies so that Lincoln's profile faced the same way, and made her bed even as she was crawling out of it. She actually folded her soiled laundry, rather than just tossing it in the hamper. Kathleen always smiled at that; her sister did her laundry at Kathleen's house every Wednesday night, and usually had dinner there, too.
The U.S. Open T-shirt Annie had worn when Kathleen saw her last on Wednesday night now lay on the top of the clothes hamper. And there was a long floral-patterned Laura Ashley summer dress folded on a small settee rather than being placed with the rest of the laundry. A small thing, but very unusual for Annie. Kathleen recognized the dress; it was new and one that Anne Marie had bought to wear to the Point-to-Point amateur steeplechase with Mike Scanlan on May 6.
The red oblong box on the floor looked familiar, too. It was from Talbot's, one of the Wilmington area's better women's shops. It hadn't been opened. Kathleen slid the ribbons free, opened the box, and saw that the Talbot's seal still held the layers of tissue inside together. But she knew what the taupe garment beneath was; it was an expensive pantsuit, the same suit she had talked Annie out of buying a week earlier because it cost far too much for her budget. They'd had a little argument about that. When had she gone back to buy it?
There were five people in Anne Marie's apartment: Kathleen, Mike, her friends Jill Morrison and Ginny Columbus, and Ginny's mother, Virginia. They respected Annie's privacy, but they had to look around for some clue to where she might have gone, even as they knew it was an intrusion.
Annie didn't own much, and the furniture she did have was secondhand or the kind of inexpensive stuff that had to be assembled after purchase, but the way she had decorated her place was her and it was charming. There were photographs: family pictures with her brothers and sister one Easter, a candid shot of Anne Marie and Mike taken at her surprise birthday party at Kathleen's in January, and on the wall a picture of their mother, also named Kathleen. There were Annie's scruffy old stuffed animals wearing women's rights buttons, a motley collection of knickknacks that pleased her.
Anne Marie always kept her kitchen almost antiseptically clean. But this was the source of the miasma in her apartment; the whole room smelled of rotting food. The counter was littered with fruit and vegetables long since grown overripe and mushy. The strawberries were brown and had a sickly sweet odor; mushrooms dank as a swamp added to the stench. A garbage can with its plastic liner pulled up was next to the kitchen table, and it, too, was full of decaying food.
Mike shook his head. He knew that Anne Marie hated to keep any garbage in her apartment; when he picked her up for a date, she invariably carried a neat bag of garbage to put in the cans outside. There was no way she would have left her kitchen in this condition.
Looking into the refrigerator, Kathleen found two doggie bags of leftovers from a Philadelphia restaurant, Panorama. The food inside wasn't spoiled, but it looked dry, as if it had been there for a few days at least. Anne Marie wouldn't have left all this food out on the counter. She wouldn't even have kept restaurant food in her refrigerator so long. Kathleen looked at Mike questioningly. Had he and Anne Marie been to this restaurant? He read her mind and shook his head slightly.
Oddly, there were other things on the kitchen counter: prescription medications, sample size, arranged like a row of dominoes; pouches of Rice-A-Roni; pretzels. They hadn't been opened, but they hadn't been put neatly in the cupboards, either.
Perhaps most frightening of all, Anne Marie's purse was there in the kitchen, along with her wallet and all of her credit cards. There was about $40 in bills in the wallet. The day-runner that she used to keep track of all her appointments was also there, but her keys weren't. She kept her house and car keys on a ring attached to a leather pouch that held a little canister of Mace.
There was some unknown component in this puzzle that they couldn't grasp, some missing piece. They questioned one another and themselves, looking for some clue that would reveal Anne Marie's whereabouts. As time went on, their theories grew more outlandish and improbable, anything to make it seem that she was safe. It didn't matter if she had decided to step out of her everyday life without telling them. It didn't even matter if she had run away with no plan to come home again. The only thing that mattered was that they needed to hear from her, because the most terrible emotional anguish known to humans is not knowing.
Surrounded by her things, all the funky, sentimental, humorous, silly possessions that made this apartment so special to Anne Marie, this first real home of her own, it seemed to the people who waited there that at any moment the door downstairs would open and they would hear her voice calling up to them. Their Annie had a lovely pansy-eyed face, but her voice could carry a mile when she chose to shout. She could make people laugh with that voice, a beautiful woman who could bellow like a fishwife and then giggle.
Every creak of the old semidetached house made them hope it was her hand opening the door, her feet on the steps. They felt her essence around them wherever they turned. Annie was the most alive person they knew. And still, the more they willed her to come home, the farther away she seemed to be.
For everything they found that seemed normal and safe, they discovered something else that was totally atypical of Anne Marie. The disorder alone would be anathema to her. Above all else, this told them she was gone. The fact that Anne Marie's green 1995 Volkswagen Jetta was parked in its usual spot across the street frightened them, too. That meant she wasn't off on some errand of her own; she had to be with someone else. But who?
As if there might be some clue there, Kathleen looked to see what CD was in Annie's player. It was one of her sister's favorite singers -- Shawn Colvin. Annie loved Shawn's strong, sweet Irish voice and the songs she wrote and performed. She had programmed the CD to play the track with the song "Get Out of the House."
Many of Shawn Colvin's songs spoke to Anne Marie; her lyrics were poems full of longing, lost love, the fear of danger and a need to be at home and safe again. But Anne Marie wasn't home.
At the moment when time becomes important it is relentless and unforgiving, and with each passing moment the fear and apprehension of Anne Marie's family and friends grew more palpable. It was not possible that Annie should have left of her own volition, that she could have gone away without telling any of these people who loved her.
Anne Marie and Mike should have been with Robert and Susan right now, maybe having coffee after dinner, maybe saying good-bye and getting ready to drive back to Wilmington. But instead, Mike was here, as worried as the rest of them. Kathleen knew that Annie was in love with Mike; she would have returned his calls. She would have called all of them back. Annie hadn't returned any of her calls since Thursday afternoon.
Kathleen couldn't wait any longer to take action. On Sunday, June 30, 1996, at approximately 12:15 A.M., with the full support of her brother Robert and of Michael Scanlan, the man Anne Marie had only just begun to love, she called again to report to the Wilmington Police Department that Anne Marie Fahey was missing. "I called the police," she said. "The Wilmington city police. I waited for what felt like an eternity, and they didn't come, so I called Ed Freel."
The Freels were almost like family to the Faheys. Ed Freel was the Secretary of State for Governor Carper. Kathleen called him at O'Friel's Pub, an Irish tavern owned and operated by the family. "I told him what was going on, and within a couple of minutes, there were two state policemen here."
Once it was official it seemed all the more terrible.
While they had waited for Anne Marie, for the police, for some word, five of the people who meant the most to Anne Marie forced themselves to believe that she was OK, or even if she wasn't completely OK, that she was alive somewhere. And then they caught their breaths and took back even the thought that she wasn't alive. Annie was too vibrant and beautiful not to be somewhere out there. It was just that they had somehow lost touch with her.
Only those who have suddenly lost their connection to someone they love -- not lost to death, simply lost -- can begin to understand the agony of this vigil. Anne Marie Fahey was a young woman blessed with fair beauty as natural as a rose. She was the survivor of adversities that would have beaten a lesser woman, and yet still full of hope and, most of all, love. And now, in the first week of the summer that promised to be her happiest, she was inexplicably missing. This was the emptiest and most agonizing conclusion that her family and friends could come to.
And for Kathleen, one of two sisters among the six Fahey siblings, there were questions that returned to haunt her. She had spent the time as she waited for the police looking around the apartment to see if there was a note, maybe something Annie had jotted down in her day-runner, some clue to where she might be. The little blocks in her sister's calendar were mostly filled, but with prosaic notations -- birthdays Annie wanted to remember, monthly notations of the anniversary of the day she'd met Mike, baby showers, lunches, some dinner dates. There was nothing there that looked even slightly ominous.
But Kathleen was soon almost as shocked as she was worried. She had found a number of notes and cards in Anne Marie's drawers, and they weren't all from Mike Scanlan. Annie was a sentimental pack rat, and she had saved all manner of sentimental mementos from Mike -- ticket stubs from Tosca at the Grand Opera House, the Russian ballet, the Luther Vandross concert -- and even souvenirs from the pope's visit to Baltimore. Those were all in the top drawer of her bedroom dresser.
But in the top drawer of a hutch in Annie's living room, Kathleen had found an envelope that read Anne Marie Fahey, and beneath that, Personal and Confidential. Kathleen opened the envelope and inside was a long and complicated letter from a man who clearly knew her sister very well indeed, a man who appeared to know all of them and seemed intimately acquainted with their family relationships and plans. Scanning the pages was almost like reading a foreign language; this person knew about them and yet he was someone Kathleen barely knew, and not someone she could ever picture in her younger sister's life.
And yet he must be. The first letter ended, "All I want to do is make you happy and be with you. I love you."
That letter wasn't signed, but it didn't really have to be; all the letters and notes in the envelope were written on the letterhead of the law firm of Saul, Ewing, Remick and Saul -- FROM THE DESK OF THOMAS J. CAPANO.
Thomas Capano. Kathleen's thoughts flashed back to the previous fall; her friend Bud Freel, who was a Wilmington city councilman, had mentioned something to her about Tom Capano and Anne Marie. He'd heard a rumor that they were dating. It was so preposterous then -- and now -- that Kathleen had looked at Bud dumbfounded. She had dismissed it from her mind so quickly that there was no time for a solid memory to form. Anne Marie had never talked about Capano to her family. How could she be involved with him and not mention it, when they were all so close? They had banded together when they were only children, the six of them against the world. It was impossible to believe that Annie might have held back such an important secret from her sister and her brothers.
Kathleen had casually asked Annie about Tom Capano, and she had laughed and said they were just friends -- that he sometimes stopped by the governor's office on business. That had been enough for Kathleen; she had almost forgotten about their conversation. No, Capano was the last person in the world anyone would have connected to her sister in any significant way.
Kathleen didn't really know Tom Capano well, but she knew him. Everyone in Wilmington, probably everyone in Delaware, did. The whole Capano family was legendary, and Tom was a political power-hitter, wealthy, older, and married. Kathleen had met him sometime in the early eighties when she worked as a waitress and bartender at O'Friel's, through Bud Freel, whom she used to date. Kathleen hadn't seen Tom Capano for a year, and that was at the closing of Bud's other place: Buddy's Bar.
She stared at the letters in her hand. They seemed to suggest that Annie hadn't told her the whole truth about a hidden place in her life. Kathleen knew she had to tell Mike about the letters and notes from Tom Capano. But, first, they had to talk to the police. They had to do everything they could to try to find Annie. Perhaps then, they could sort out the secrets of her life.
It was sometime after midnight that first night when Colonel Alan Ellingsworth, the superintendent of the Delaware State Police, was notified that one of Governor Carper's secretaries had apparently vanished. Ellingsworth phoned Lieutenant Mark Daniels at home and asked him to respond to 1718 Washington Street to assist the Wilmington Police Department in whatever capacity might be needed.
Daniels was a nineteen-year veteran of the Delaware State Police and was currently the administrative lieutenant in their Criminal Investigative Division in New Castle County. He and DSP officer Steven Montague joined Wilmington detective Robert Donovan at Anne Marie Fahey's apartment.
It was apparent that the missing woman's sister and her friends were terribly worried. Some people vanish on a whim, but this didn't sound like that kind of a disappearance. The investigators listened carefully as Kathleen Fahey-Hosey, Mike Scanlan, Jill Morrison, and the Columbuses reviewed their last contact with Anne Marie. What it came down to was that no one had actually seen or talked to her since Thursday afternoon.
Jill and Ginny said that Anne Marie had worked in the governor's office from 7:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. "She had an appointment with her psychiatrist at five," Jill explained. "And she was going to take Friday off."
Jill recalled that Anne Marie had been in good spirits, and was looking forward to Friday. She was going to have a day all to herself, be babied with a pedicure and a manicure, and then take a book to Valley Garden Park and just relax.
If Anne Marie had special plans for Thursday night, none of the witnesses knew about them. Lieutenant Daniels asked if anyone had listened to the messages on Anne Marie's phone.
Jill told him that she and Anne Marie both had Bell Atlantic's "Answer Call" on their phones that recorded incoming messages. When Kathleen had picked up Annie's phone, she heard a steady beep-beep-beep, and Jill said that meant there were waiting messages.
"I know her code," Jill said. Daniels nodded, and Jill punched in Anne Marie's code so the detectives could listen to incoming messages. Maybe the answer lay there, although it seemed an intrusion, once more, into her privacy -- the privacy that meant so much to her.
The outgoing message was so familiar to most of the people in the room. Now, hearing Anne Marie's voice with her lilting greeting made their hearts skip a beat. They listened, wanting to find answers but afraid of what they might hear.
The first four messages had come in before they lost touch with her. The others only confirmed how long she had been gone. They had begun on Thursday night, June 27, 1996.
RECORDER: Fifth saved message.
MICHAEL SCANLAN: Hey, Annie, remember me? I'm going to a little cookout thing for our interns. I'll be home around nine. Give me a holler. I'll talk to you when I get home. Thanks. Bye.
RECORDER: Sixth saved message.
MICHAEL SCANLAN: Hey, Annie, it's almost nine-thirty and a couple of us are headed out to Kid Shelleen's on the way home. I wanted to know if you wanted to step over and join us. I will call you before we head over there and see if you are back.
RECORDER: Seventh saved message.
MICHAEL SCANLAN: Hey, Annie, we're headed over to Kid Shelleen's right now and it's about a quarter to ten, so if you could stop by, that would be awesome. If not, I'll talk to you later. Bye.
RECORDER: Eighth saved message.
MICHAEL SCANLAN: Hi, Annie, this is Mike calling. It's around two-fifteen [Friday]. Give me a call....Let me know what you're up to? See ya.
RECORDER: Ninth saved message.
EILEEN WILLIAMS: Hi, Annie. It's Ei. I was just calling. It's Friday around three-thirty. I was calling to see what you were doing tonight. I thought maybe we could get together. Give me a call? Bye.
RECORDER: Tenth saved message.
JILL MORRISON: Hey, girl, give me a call when you get in? I'm at work right now at three after eleven [Saturday morning]. I'll probably be here until one, and then I'll be home afterward. I need to ask you a question. Thanks. Bye.
RECORDER: Eleventh saved message.
MICHAEL SCANLAN: Hey, Annie. It's Mike. It's Saturday morning. Give me a call. Bye.
RECORDER: Twelfth saved message.
KATHLEEN FAHEY-HOSEY: Hi, Anne. It's Kathleen. Four o'clock on Saturday. When you come back from Robert and Susan's tonight, please bring the boys' sneakers? I forgot to bring them home today and poor Brendan has no shoes. But hold on. Kevin wants to say Hi. Say Hi --
Kevin Hosey [small voice]: Bye. Love you.
RECORDER: Thirteenth saved message.
SUSAN FAHEY: Annie, it's me. Calling to talk to you about tonight, but if I missed you, I will just talk to you when you guys come up. It's five o'clock. Five after five. Bye.
RECORDER: Fourteenth saved message.
Click [hang up].
RECORDER: Fifteenth saved message.
GINNY COLUMBUS: Hey, Annie. It's me. I need to talk to you. Please call me as soon as you get this message. [Gives her number] Thanks. Bye.
RECORDER: Sixteenth saved message.
SUSAN FAHEY: Annie, it's Saturday at eleven P.M. Give us a call. Bye.
The last call had been only two-and-a-half hours ago. And none of the messages needed explaining to the group listening. "Anne Marie would have called back," Jill said. "She always listened to her messages immediately, and she always called you back."
Copyright © 1999 by Ann Rule
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I found this book one of her best, I had to read others in my psychology class, this one i read on my own and it was one of my favorites. It gets into all the details behind a case that you could never get from watching a show on tv or reading the newspaper, and that is what I like the most!!
his book was well written, just like all of Ann Rule's books are. However, this book was packed with a lot of sad but true issues about a woman who never got to experience life to it's fullest because of one very jealous man. I couldn't put the book down, the more I read the more I couldn't stop. A real page turner. It's just hard to believe that the story could be real but it is. It's one of Ann's best books, so far.
Ann Rule is on her game with this one. She smoothly weaves in the history of the characters with the present situation. She does a great job delving into the characters backgrounds making me feel like they are personal friends. You will not be disappointed.
this was the first book of hers thati read...and that was two years ago. since then, i have purchased each and every book of ann's and wait for each new one to be released. this book in particular is one of my favorites and i need a new copy as i have read it so many times. this is a book that not only grips you as you read it, but is one i have thouroughly enjoyed rereading numerous times...it is a chilling and sad account of the life of a beautiful person, ann marie, who trusted the wrong man. may she rest in peace and may her family find happiness, peace, and acceptance.
Ann Rule captured this story and told it so well that although I was born and raised in Southeastern PA, just across the border from Delaware and the Wilmington area and had heard just about everything there was to hear about this case, I was still glued! The reactions I had surprised me. I felt a sense of home reading the introduction. At the end, I was crying for Anne Marie, her family, and all the people who were affected and ruined by this monster. The story deserved an unforgettable telling. Ann Rule and this book accomplished that 100%.
I have always enjoyed Ann Rule's books, but this was awesome. Her writing puts you right there and you can visualize everything. You become a part of the victim and can almost feel like you are there. This is one novel I would like to see on video.
A True Crime Buff ¿ from the N. W. Territory ¿And Never Let Her Go¿ a true page turner. You can¿t beat Ann Rule for putting together a case of True Crime. For those of us who live in a safe and loving environment she has a way of making us understand HOW these kinds of horrible situations can come about. How people can read a book by Ann Rule and make derogatory comments we will never understand. They are certainly among the very few and a distinct minority. The trained professionals; the FBI, Police Departments etc. have a high respect for her accuracy, her sensitivity and her superb and outstanding skills as an author. Those of us who are among her millions of fans who are knowledgeable of current events AND our surroundings appreciate her books for the masterpieces that they are in the writing of True Crime. I say you will NEVER be disappointed by one of her books, I have them all and would not part with any one of them. Those who `just don¿t get it¿ should be looking for something other than ¿True Crime¿. A good ¿Western¿ or some kind of fiction might hold their attention. Then of course there are the dinosaurs that think a woman shouldn¿t be writing¿. period. To all of those¿. Go back to your caves or your therapists. Keep up the good work Ann because there are millions of us who appreciate you.
This was one of the best books I have ever read! I could not put it down! Ann Rule's account of what happened between Thomas Capano and Anne Marie Fahey was excellent. She showed the world the true Thomas Capano. Anne Marie Fahey was an innocent victim of an evil man's desire to control her.
I love all of Ann Rule's books. She is an excellent author and truly brings you to the heart of the story and the crime that takes place. This book is no exception. It is a must for anyone that collects the best of Ann Rule's books. Of course, its hard to pick the best when you love them all. Ann has had many of her books made in to TV movies, so what I like to do is buy the book and read it first and then get the DVD and watch the movie. Both this book and the TV movie of the same name was one of the best! You will not be disappointed. From a fan in Barrington, NH
This was a first for me with Ann Rule...but it isn't the last book I'll read written by her. Even though I'm just across the river from Delaware, I wasn't that familar with the details except what I saw on T.V. Ann Rule brought ever single detail right into my home. What terrible things he did to all women he was involved with. He was the one who should have died, not Ann Marie. My heart goes out to Ann Marie and her family for all they've been through. And to all the other women who loved and trusted this con artist...we learn from our mistakes. This book took me by storm and I just couldn't put it down. Every detail and every page was filled with important information about this terrible crime. I don't think Tom Capano truly got everything he deserved for committing this murder.
Ann Rule is the queen of true crime writing. And this book is her masterpiece.
This was the first Ann Rule book that I have read. Once I started, I didn't want to put it down. Very sad about what happens to this young lady. Ann does an excellent job filling is with a lot of details and about this case.
Ann Rule really knows how to go to the heart of the whole story. This book is so well written that you feel as if you know these people. Ann Rule did a great justice writing this book for the memory of Anne Marie Fahey. She lives on in her families memories and so many others thanks to Ann Rule.
This is a story of a man with status and how he preys on a young lady that is very vulnarable. After reading this book I was very very sorry for her and her family. He was a man with no morals or feelings. Ann has done a wonderful job telling this story about Ann Marie Fahey, its too bad she has so many people like Ms. Fahey to write about.
I have been reading Ann Rule books for awhile now and I thought this one was very well done! I began to feel like I knew the people in the book. I felt like I wanted to go to these places to get a feel for the place where Anne Marie lived. Thanks for another great read!
I thought the book rambled on in places, but still a good book. Book could have been shorter. Ann Rule is still the best. I would recommend this book, just not her best.
Once again Ann Rule has proved she is the Queen of true crime reporting. By her diligent investigative work and understanding of human nature, as readers we understand why Ann Marie continued her 'relationship' with Thomas Capano. I mourn for Anne Marie because she never realized how special she was, until the end, and let a manipulative, self-centered man control her life. I not only mourn for Anne Marie and her family but all those that have had the unfortunate fate of meeting, knowing or being related to - Thomas Capano. This book opens our eyes, as readers, once again, to the evil that surrounds us on a daily basis.
She's done it again. I know there were other books written on the Capano case but I'm sure they couldn't measure up to Ann Rule's effort. Meticulously researched and wonderfully written, it's like a Greek tragedy. Here's Capano this powerful judge brought down by his fatal flaws. And poor Ann Marie. If only she'd understood how dangerous he really was. Ann Rule's the most prolific writer I know of but if she wrote twice as much I'd read them all.
Ann Rule always delivers a gripping, thorough, heartbreaking story. This time she out did herself. I watched the actual news coverage of this case but by reading the book I got to know Anne Marie Fahey and Tom Capano personally. I have to commend the investigators who did an excellent job on solving the case. I have not been able to get the story out of my mind since I finished the book. I think Anne Marie's sister sums things up in the end by saying 'Anne Marie was pure sweetness'. How ironic that her killer was pure evil! My heart goes out deeply to all of the victims (and there are many) of Tom Capano. At least justice prevailed in the end of this tragedy. I hope Capano rots in jail along with the cockroaches that invade his privacy.
I listened to the audio version of this book over a month ago and it still sticks in my mind. Ann Rule writes with insight, compassion, attention to detail and makes this is one of the most riveting stories I have ever read. Without ever finding the body a prosecution takes place and a GUILTY verdict is pronounced. Tommy is sentenced to death and, until Ann Rule puts it all together, we continue to ask why. Ann has a way of answering the only remaining question, WHY? Why would this happen to a bright young woman and why would an upwardly mobile man commit this gruesome crime? After reading the last page you finally know.
Every one of Ann Rule's books are jewels. This one is no exception. You'll not forget Anne Marie Fahey nor will you be able to forget Thomas Capano any time soon. My sympathy goes out to her loved ones. What a tragic loss. Can't wait for the next book. Keep 'em comin', Ann.
I've read all of Ann Rule's books and this is the best. She really tells a gripping and heartbreaking story. I couldn't put the book down! Thanks, Ann, for warning us abouth the Tom Capanos of the world. My heart goes out to the Fahey family.
Ann Rule is the best true crime writer. She does what no other writer does, and that is to allow the reader to get to know the victim. Ann Marie Fahey had a sad childhood. While reading what she went through and all her struggles you couldn't help but to want her to find happiness. Instead of portraying her in a negative light (since she was having an affair with a married man) Ann Rule lets you see how easy it was for a man like Thomas Capano to take advantage of this insecure woman as he did all the women in his life. Thomas Capano does finally get what he deserves, it's just a shame he couldn't be stopped before he killed this woman who was deeply loved by her family and friends.
I've read most of Ann Rule's books and this is definitely one of the best. As a psycho- logy major in college I love the intimate way Rule gets into her subkects and gives the reader exactly what she wants in her revelations of backgraound and what can lead criminals to perpertrate the crimes they accomplish. and Never Let Her go grips the reader and 'never let's him/her go' till the last sentence.
This is the second Rule book I have read and I am hooked. I found this book very intriguing. Having heard all of the media accounts of this story as it was happening due to living nearby, as soon as I saw this title I had to have it. It is a fascinating book--I liked in particular how the review of the lives involved gave the details which were important to the story and to how Tom Capano reeled in these women, yet didn't seem to make excuses for anyone involved for anything they did.