Monday, January 29, 2018

"When rescuers found Nathan Carman after seven days at sea, his mother had vanished without a trace"


Shortly after 11 p.m. on a warm Saturday in September 2016, 22-year-old Nathan Carman and his mother, Linda, untied their boat, the Chicken Pox, and set out for a night of fishing.


A week after Nathan’s rescue, law enforcement from five states, along with the Coast Guard and FBI, convened to discuss Linda’s disappearance. Nathan, who refused to cooperate with the authorities, proved difficult to investigate. He lived alone in a white Colonial house in southern Vermont, and agents had a hard time finding anyone who had spoken with him for more than a minute or two.


in July 2017, with prospects of a criminal prosecution dimming, Linda’s sisters filed a “slayer action” against Nathan in civil court, where the burden of proof is lower and circumstantial evidence holds more weight. Slayer actions are intended to uphold a simple principle: Heirs should not benefit from their own wrongdoing. A man who kills his mother, for example, shouldn’t be entitled to an inheritance. But while the slayer action the sisters filed against Nathan raised questions about Linda’s death, it stopped short of accusing him of murdering his mother. Instead, the sisters accused Nathan of murdering another family member: his grandfather.