Authorities investigating the murders of Stephen and Djeswende Reid in Concord, N.H. appealed to the public Thursday for dashcam videos from the day the couple was last seen alive and for bicyclists and hikers to share any videos they took during three days in April on the trail network where the couple’s bodies were found.
The Reids were last seen alive the afternoon of April 18, leaving the Alton Woods apartment complex where they lived for a walk in the Broken Grounds Trails network off Portsmouth Street and Loudon Road. Their bodies were found later that week. Both were killed by multiple gunshot wounds, authorities said.
In a statement Thursday, Attorney General John M. Formella’s office urged anyone who drove on Portsmouth Street or Loudon Road on April 18 to check their dashboard cameras and share the videos with Concord police.
Formella’s office, which leads murder investigations in the state, also asked for anyone who had a camera operating while biking or hiking in that set of woods to share any videos they took from April 17 to April 19. The couple’s bodies were found April 21 in the trail network.
“It is crucial that any person who has any information regarding these murders report to the police what information is known to them, no matter how inconsequential the person believes the information may be,’' Formella’s office said. “The police continue to follow up on each of these leads and continue to investigate every aspect of these murders.”
The most detailed public account of the killings came April 22, when Senior Assistant Attorney General Geoffrey W.R. Ward and Concord Police Chief Bradley Osgood said they did not believe those responsible for the murders posed a threat to the general public.
“We have no specific information to lead us to believe that the public is generally in any danger. You know, that being said, people should remain vigilant...Take normal precautions as you got about your daily life,” Ward said. “Obviously it’s a tragic set of circumstances and our thoughts and sympathies are with the Reid family. But we have to be careful about what we say.”
Osgood said Concord “is one of the safest cities in one of the safest states in the United States.” Earlier this week, Osgood said his department is increasing high-visibility patrols on the city’s hiking trails. “The city’s trail network is very vast and it’s an enormous area, and I think that we can ease some community concern by just being highly visible in those area,” Osgood told WMUR-TV.
The murders appear to have mystified law enforcement and caused unease in the state’s capital city. The FBI is assisting in the investigation. Concord police have received more than 130 tips and on Thursday asked those who had submitted a tip online to return to the website to see if police had requested further information.
The Concord Regional Crimeline, a nonprofit, on Thursday offered a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of the killer or killers.
Video footage has played a crucial role in helping investigators solve crimes, said Paul Zipper, a retired Massachusetts State Police captain who teaches a course about forensic criminal investigations at Merrimack College.
“Think of it as the neighborhood canvass,” he said. “You’re knocking on doors and windows. In this particular case, the doors and windows are people driving by in their vehicles. They’re mobile.”
Zipper cited a high-profile example of investigators asking for the public’s help in collecting digital evidence. In September, FBI agents searching for Gabby Petito asked the public for photos and videos, Zipper said, hoping to collect more information about the circumstances of her disappearance during a road trip. The plea turned up video footage from Wyoming’s Bridger-Teton National Forest of the white van that Petito and her fiancé were traveling in.
The footage was recorded on a dashcam video belonging to a family of tourists. Petito’s body was found in a camping area at the forest.
“Asking the public for help is a good way to get the community involved,” Zipper said. “If they didn’t ask the public for help, I would say they weren’t pursuing every possible avenue to collect information to put a case together.”
Read more coverage:
- Police in Concord, N.H. increasing patrols in wake of unsolved double murder
- What we know (and don’t know) about the murders of retired Concord, N.H., couple