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Day 3 of search for evidence in 1980 case

New Hampshire Union Leader

November 13. 2017 10:44PM
Manchester police and other law enforcement leave the woods behind the Kimball Street housing project, where a third day of searching continued for evidence in connection to the 1980 disappearance of Denise Daneault. (MARK HAYWARD/UNION LEADER)

MANCHESTER — Searchers spent their third day Monday in the wooded area behind the Kimball Street housing project, hoping to find evidence connected to the 1980 disappearance of Manchester mom Denise Daneault.

Through trees, a backhoe and a small front loader could be seen at work. The wooded area sounded with the chug of heavy-duty engines and beeps when a driver threw a vehicle in reverse.

Police officers, clad in heavy coats, hats and gloves, stood beside the equipment with shovels.

Daneault was a divorced mother of 4- and 6-year-old boys. She disappeared in June 1980, just days before her 26th birthday. She had been out at a social club at the corner of Merrimack and Union streets.

Homicide prosecutor Jeffery Strelzin said Manchester police started examining the Daneault disappearance after hearing from a person about 1 1/2 years ago in connection with the Denise Beaudin case. Beaudin’s 1981 disappearance is believed tied to now-dead serial killer Terry Peder Rasmussen.

Rasmussen, who went by several aliases and died in a California prison, is believed responsible for at least four New Hampshire murders. He was known as Robert Evans when he lived in Manchester and is suspected in the killings of four females whose remains were discovered years ago in Allenstown.

As authorities tried to piece together the mystery involving Evans and Beaudin, they flooded the media with requests for information from the public.

“Someone reached out and mentioned (Daneault),” Strelzin said.

Manchester police had last looked into the Daneault disappearance around 1981, Strelzin said.

Strelzin said Manchester police re-examined the case, which led to the searches in the city-owned area behind the Kimball Street projects. The area is commonly referred to as Black Acres.

The search could continue into today, Strelzin said.

He stressed that authorities have no information that links the Beaudin and Daneault disappearances.

Work concentrated on an area about 30 feet into the woods behind building 44 in the sprawling housing complex.

Reporters milled around the rear parking lot; police prevented anyone from venturing into the woods where the search was taking place.

Tracy Bragg said she often walks her dog, Baylee, in the woods where police are searching.

“She’s always sniffing out there,” said Bragg. “I hope they find whatever they’re looking for to get some closure on it.”

Anyone with information about Daneault is asked to call Detective Lucas Hobbs at the Manchester Police Department at 792-5519

Crime Manchester