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Missing Prosecutor Declared Dead

BELLEFONTE, Pa., Aug. 2 (UPI) — A Pennsylvania district attorney who vanished six years ago has been declared legally dead.

The ruling last week on Ray Gricar allows the missing man’s daughter to settle his estate but does not end speculation about what happened in April 2005, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Sunday. Gricar, who was 59 at the time, was planning his retirement after 20 years as the elected district attorney in Centre County, a rural region that is home to Penn State.

A few hours after Centre County District Judge David Crine issued his ruling July 25, online speculation began about a man arrested for trespassing in Utah who had refused to identify himself. He has since been determined not to be Gricar.

Gricar told his girlfriend, who shared his home in Bellefonte, he was on a trip in search of antiques in Lewisburg, 50 miles away. His car turned up in a Lewisburg parking lot and his laptop computer was found in the Susquehanna River.

Investigators are split between suicide, homicide and a voluntary disappearance. One defense lawyer suggested to the Inquirer that Gricar is in the federal witness protection program.

Amos Goodall, who represents Gricar’s only child, Lara, believes the district attorney is dead.

“I can’t believe that he would have spent the last six years causing his family to be in the real purgatory that they have been in,” he said. “If he were alive, he would’ve contacted his family.”

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