In September of 2010, Tiffany and David Hartley started their day with the idea of jet skiing on the Mexican side of Falcon Lake.
The day ended with David’s death.
Tiffany had made a desperate and panicked 911 call, explaining that three boats had approached them and opened fire. She claimed that David had been shot in the head and that she had tried to go to him, but had been run off by gunfire.
A search was launched. David’s remains were nowhere to be found.
The initial public reaction (and the reaction of quite a few members of the press) cast doubt on Tiffany’s story. She had claimed that they had been attacked by pirates, but who has ever heard of lake pirates before? The story seemed far-fetched, but the investigation continued.
In this post, I discuss what happens in cases like this: when tragedy strikes, you can’t get any help from the authorities, and when nobody believes you.
This incident at Falcon Lake actually brought to light several other violent incidents of piracy in the area that occurred over the months leading up to September.
Eventually, the public and the press ate their words, as it became clear that Tiffany had been telling the truth. Suspicion lifted from her, and though it took over two years, at least some of the men involved were brought to justice.
When jurisdiction gets in the way
In a case like this, local and Federal agencies will do their best, but they’re often hindered by jurisdiction or lack of admissible evidence. Many local, national and international law enforcement agencies lack the key quality to solving many mysteries or crimes, the art of interview and interrogations. This skill-set is only mastered after a minimum of ten years of experience and hundreds of interviews with the scum, vermin and trash of our society. Make sure your PI has this quality and experience.
In cases like this where hands may be tied, a private investigation firm may be called upon, to come and go without worrying about stepping over jurisdictional borders. We are one of the only firms based in the United States that performs private investigation services in Mexico. You can visit our totally dedicated website to this subject matter at www.investigatormexico.com.
When no one believes you
Despite the fact that many in the public and media were reticent to believe her, Tiffany continued rallying, giving interviews to news outlets and calling every agency she could – but she kept hitting walls.
No one believed that there were actually pirates on this lake, employed by Mexican drug cartels.
Even after evidence surfaced of cartel activity, people believed that Tiffany and David must have been making a drug deal at the time. They posted that the deal had gone wrong, David had been killed, and that Tiffany was trying to cover for her own illegal activity.
I’ve been investigating cases for a long time, and I’m as skeptical as anyone in cases like this. A lot of times things are as they seem to be, but sometimes people who seem guilty are in fact telling the truth.
I’m reminded of the very first case I had as a private investigator, where I proved a stepdad had been framed for rape by his wife and stepdaughter.
When no one else believes you, and you’re just looking for justice, a private investigator can be your last and brightest hope. At Martin Investigative Services, we deal with cold cases and cross-border cases on a regular basis.
With a staff of former supervisory agents for the DEA, Secret Service, FBI, and IRS, we bring both depth and diversity of experience and expertise to every case. We only take your case if we believe there is a real chance of solving it and helping you. We don’t deal in false hope.