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Chapter 3. Secrecy

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2005 11:17 am    Post subject: Chapter 3. Secrecy Reply with quote

available from Amazon.com:

Murder On A Horse Trail: The Disappearance of Chandra Levy
by Ralph Daugherty
ISBN: 0-595-31847-9

Murder on a Horse Trail: The Disappearance of Chandra Levy also available free to read online here on www.justiceforchandra.com
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


While Condit was describing a dark curly haired girl with a great body to Flammini in the summer of 2000, Vince was driving him to see another woman, a 39 year old red haired stewardess, he was to find out. The Modesto Bee quotes Flammini recalling the incident. They were going to a 19th Avenue mall in San Francisco and Condit told him to wait, he had to meet someone. Flammini asked who, and Condit told him a stewardess. Then Flammini saw her and Condit meet at a small cafe in a bookshop.

Another time he took Condit to meet her at a motel in Los Angeles. At some point during these rendezvous Flammini met the stewardess. Within a couple of months Condit told Flammini to find another line of work. Flammini had ridden motorcycles with Condit, roomed with him on the road, lifted weights with him in Flammini's gym, and even gardened together, but Flammini had done something to end a thirty year relationship and ten years as Condit's driver and security. Flammini isn't sure why, but he thinks he knew too much. [1]

And there was a lot to know. Condit was now dating Chandra in D.C. and the stewardess, Ann Marie Smith, in both D.C. and San Francisco. Ann Marie was a San Francisco based stewardess for United Airlines working a cross country flight between San Francisco and Washington. They would meet in Washington at his apartment or her hotel, or in San Francisco she would pick him up at the airport on his flight home from Washington and go to the Hyatt. She would then drop him off at a Starbuck's or other locations and his California chief of staff, Mike Lynch, would pick him up to drive him home to Modesto, an hour and a half drive or longer.

One time Condit came to see her on his Harley he had at home in Modesto and gave her a ride to a hotel in Livermore which, perhaps as cover, was next to a Harley shop. Condit didn't take the risk of going to Anne Marie or Chandra's apartments. Ann Marie had roommates sharing her apartment in San Francisco. Chandra lived alone at the Newport in Washington, but security was such that he would have had to be buzzed in at the front door, and he was never seen there.

Congressman Gary Condit had reason to avoid risk. He was married, very much so in Modesto, more questionably so in Washington. For years congressional colleagues had been led to believe that Condit's wife Carolyn was an invalid. As journalist Lisa DePaulo points out, Condit was the only congressman whose Web site or personal bio info doesn't mention their wife.

Fellow California congressman Dave Dreier is quoted in Newsweek as saying: "I was told early on that his wife was ill, and that he went out. I'd heard she'd been ill for 30 years. This is a guy who's active, and if his wife can't do much of anything with him, that's sad and unfortunate, and if he ends up seeing other women, it couldn't come as a humongous shock."

Cal Dooley, another California congressman, had seen her "maybe once". Carolyn rarely went to Washington, and the former mayor of Modesto, Dick Lang, had not even seen her attend public events in Modesto much in the past 30 years. [2]

Condit's wife Carolyn had been married to him for 34 years and had two children with him, Chad and Cadee, who both worked for Governor Gray Davis of California. She did suffer from migraines, but friends described her as "bubbly", "outgoing", and "a live wire", hardly an invalid. [3]

But Condit cultivated the image of not exactly being married. When another stewardess that he told he was divorced checked up on him with the League of Women Voters and found out he was married with two kids, he responded that his wife was "terminally ill". He told Anne Marie that his wife was extremely ill with encephalitis of the brain and that it was more a marriage of friendship than husband-wife. Because of that, he would not get divorced, was "not pulling a Newt", referring to Newt Gingrich divorcing his wife while she was in the hospital and the political fallout that came with that. [4]

Anne Marie started seeing him in July, and by November Condit was mentioning the prospect of a vacation with her in Palm Springs. Coincidentally, Chandra was telling her Aunt Linda Zamsky at Thanksgiving of the same thing, the possibility of taking a vacation with her boyfriend to Palm Springs. It had been a month since Chandra and Jennifer Baker had visited Condit's office. On Thanksgiving Chandra journeyed up to Maryland's Eastern Shore to visit her uncle, Paul Katz, a doctor who was Susan Levy's brother, and his wife, Linda Zamsky. Chandra took the train from D.C. and Linda picked her up.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chandra was excited about telling her aunt, at 40 a little older than Chandra but still someone she shared girl talk with, about her new boyfriend in politics. In Linda Zamsky's own words, she describes what Chandra told her:

I've known Chandra's uncle for eight years. I've
known her for eight years. We were rather close from
the very beginning, actually. She would talk about
her boy friends and school and just what was going
on in her life. The few times that we would chat,
most of the time it was through family affairs, bar
mitzvah -- her brother was bar mitzvahed, I was
there. We had a family reunion down at our condo
that we used to own in Florida, we had a big family
reunion there, and she spoke to me there about a boy
friend that she was dating, a guy that was about 10
years older than she, and they were in love and
whatever, and -- so she started confiding in me from
almost the very beginning of having this girl talk.

Then she came to Washington, I think in September or
October, and she gave me a call and she said, "Hey,
Lynn, I'm out on the East Coast, let's get together,
you know, when can we get together?" I said you can
come up any time you want, I'll pick you up at the
train station … you can spend the weekend at my
house, whatever you want to do, she said, "Okay,
I'll let you know," and we chitchatted on the phone,
nothing significant that I can remember, just girl
talk. She was excited about her job, being here in
Washington was something she'd dreamed about for
quite a while, working in a government position was
something she wanted to do. So she felt that she was
on her way to where she wanted her career to take

She came in on Thanksgiving. I invited her to
Thanksgiving dinner … she wasn't going back West,
and her grandmother, Paul's mother, was going to be
in for Thanksgiving. So she came in Wednesday night,
the 22nd of November, and she told me -- I think on
the 20th or the 21st of November, she said, "Oh, I
can't wait to see you, I have a lot to tell you
about, a lot has happened here in Washington, my
job, yada yada," and so I said great … she said, "I
can't talk" -- it's not like I was trying to say,
well, what's going on -- she said, "No, I'll talk to
you when I get there."

So I picked her up at the train station on Wednesday
night, and we came back to the house and her
grandmother was up for the first hour or two so it
was idle chitchat, and then we had our girl talk and
that's where she first mentioned that she was dating
a man that was married and quite a few years older
than her. And I said, "Well, how old?" and she said
he was in his 50s, he was "fiftyish." And I said,
that's interesting. And I said, "Well, who is he?"
She said, "He's married ... Well, he's here in
Washington and he goes home occasionally."
She said, "He's in the government." She didn't say
he was in the FBI or this -- Congress or Senate, or
she didn't say that that particular evening. She
mentioned he had two kids ...

And she was just, you know, it was a new
relationship, she had met him a couple weeks prior.
She kind of referenced like either four or six
weeks, and I don't remember exactly, but she'd been
dating him for four to six weeks prior to
Thanksgiving. And -- Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving Day
came. That night happened. I don't think we did a
lot of speaking Thanksgiving.

The next day was Friday. We went to the mall with
the grandmother, we talked about -- she did talk
about the boy friend then, how, you know, she wanted
to spend time with him, how they'd spent time with
each other.

I asked her, "How do you get in touch with him if
it's so secretive, this relationship?" And she said,
"Well" -- and this is when she came and accidentally
said his name to me, okay? That she would dial a
number, it would play music, and she would leave a
message. And she said she would also call his
office. She said, "And I would also call the
office and he would -- you know, they'd answer,
"Gary Condit," and that's how his name came out,
"Congressman Condit's office." "Congressman Gary
Condit's office," that's how the name came out.

And she goes, "Oops." She says, "Oh, you didn't hear
that, did you?" And I said, "No." And of course I
did, but I didn't -- I always wanted to make --
well, anybody, I like to make them feel comfortable
when they talk to me. As I expect them to do with
me, speak with me. So she said his name, and then
she continued with how she would get in touch with

He would call her back after she would leave a
message on the number she would dial, she would
leave a message and he would call her back, 'cause
she would say, "My cell phone will be on between
this time and this time, you can reach me, call me
if you can." She was very patient. That was
something he liked about her ... He said that, "It's
nice to see someone that's willing to be flexible
with my schedule and my lifestyle. You know, I
haven't had that in a relationship before."

So Chandra was aware … that he had had previous
relationships. She didn't say that there were
relationships, just that's how she knew of them.
Because she was being very flexible. She was being
easygoing. She didn't make demands on him.

I said, "Well, what do you guys do, if it's such a
secret, what do you guys do?" And she said, "Well,
most of the time, because he's so busy in his job
and his political career, that he -- you know, he
goes to a lot of dinners, a lot of luncheons, a lot
of benefits, he just -- when we're together, we just
like to hang out at his place and be together, and
we can cook in or we'll go get a bite to eat and we
go out." I said, "Well, how do you go out if it's
such a secret?" and she said they would take a taxi
… she would come out the door, grab the taxi, and
then he would come out, baseball cap, jacket, kind
of a little incognito, and he would get in the cab
with her.

I said, "Well, wasn't he afraid that the cabby was
going to, you know, know who he was?" And she said
no, she said they didn't do a lot of talking in the
cab, they kept everything very, you know, quiet.

And these were the rules, these were rules that she
had to follow for this relationship to be flow and
to be all right. He wanted, you know -- no one could
know about this.

She -- I mean, when she told me his name, she was
really -- I mean, I made real light of it and I kind
of dummied up because I wanted her to feel
comfortable, I didn't want her to be a nervous wreck
talking about her boy friend. Obviously, I was one
of the few people that she - one or maybe a few
people that she could talk to about this, so I
wanted her to feel comfortable.

When she would go to his apartment -- she also told
me this at Thanksgiving -- she would go in, go into
the elevator, and if someone was in the elevator or
got in the elevator with her she was to push another
floor. She could not get off that floor. If someone
asked her, "Oh, you look new in the building," or,
"Did you just move in?" she would say, "No, I'm not
new here, I'm visiting a sick friend."
So these are all little details that she had worked
out with him, that kind of, you know, really shows
how serious this relationship was and how serious it
was that it had to remain a secret.

We also watched -- and I guess this was Friday night
we watched C-Span or C-Span II, Bloomberg, wherever
the Senate and the Congress go on, and she was,
like, watching it -- and I know very little about
politics, well, then I knew very little about
politics, and she was explaining the Senator's role
and the Congressman's role and who has more power
and, you know, what kind of guy this was -- and then
she described him then, when we were watching TV. I
don't know, I don't remember if he ever came up on
TV. I really -- I don't believe he did, because I
think she would have gotten a little bit more
excited and then I would have seen what he looked
like, because she did describe him as looking a
little bit like Harrison Ford. And she said he was
lean, good shape, worked out, very conscientious
about his body for 53 years old, and that's when she
told me his age … I knew he was fiftyish, but she
said 53.

My husband has a Harley Davidson. And we go in and
out of my house most of the time through the garage
into the mud room, and our Harley's parked there,
and she didn't -- she's never seen Paul's Harley. So
she saw the bike and she said, "Oh, my guy drives a
bike too." And I said, "He does?" I said, "Is it a
Harley?" and she said, "Yeah, it's great." I said,
"You know, maybe in the spring we'll get together,
you guys can come out here, I don't know who he is,
it wouldn't matter, you could tell me his name was
Tom Jones, I wouldn't know who he is, and we can go
for a bike ride together. You know? You can come out
on a bike or he can rent one, whatever."

And she said, "Yeah, because his bike's not here,
it's at home in California." And I said, oh, okay.
And she said, "But he would never do that because he
wouldn't want to be seen, you know, Paul might know
him or you might -- you know, it's just that's not
something he would do." I said okay, well, you know,
the offer's there. If you want to come out here and
spend the weekend, you're more than welcome. I mean,
I said you two can go upstairs and have your
privacy, it'll be your little bed and breakfast, and
you don't have to see me at all, you know, if you
just want to get away and be together.... [5]
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Washington Post quotes Linda further on the secrecy demands Condit made of Chandra: "He was emphatic. It had to remain secret. If anybody found out about this relationship, it was done, over, kaput." Chandra couldn't call him directly. She called a private answering service and left a message for him to call her back on her cell phone. When they went out to dinner, she would go down and hail a cab, get in, then he would come down with a cap pulled down over his face and get in. Condit told her he "admired" her for her skill at secrecy, and Chandra actually relished the intrigue. [6]

Condit lived in the Adams Morgan section of D.C., described in the press as bohemian, trendy, and hip, with the Tryst coffeehouse and restaraunt nearby. He met Chandra there once, but when they went to dinner they would take a cab to the suburbs, Chandra recalling to Linda that it was often for Thai food. The rest of the time when she saw him they stayed in his apartment, sometimes all weekend with hot oil massages and Ben and Jerry's low-fat chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream being favorites. He never came over to her apartment on Dupont Circle, about a mile and a half away.

A very controversial rule, that she had been instructed not to carry any identification when meeting her unnamed secret boyfriend in Congress,was told by Chandra to her parents. It is not intuitively clear why such a demand would be made, and the rule was not mentioned along with the others that Linda initially described from her talks with Chandra over Thanksgiving. Also, Anne Marie never mentioned any similar rule in her descriptions of secrecy in her relationship with Condit. Was Chandra given this demand to carry no id when she was with Condit, and if so, why?

As with Anne Marie and other women, Condit told Chandra that his wife never came to visit because she's "sickly". [7] Chandra saw this as a long term opportunity for them and told her aunt of a five year plan for her to live with Condit secretly and then get married and have a baby.

Linda suggested there would be problems but was not surprised Chandra was seeing someone older. She told Larry King: "Because Chandra was a very, very mature, independent individual. She is a very independent individual. So I -- it didn't surprise me that she was in love or having a relationship with someone that was much older than her."

Anne Marie at 39 was much closer to Condit's age, but she describes the same rules of secrecy as Chandra would relate to Linda Zamsky. She told Rita Cosby of Fox News: "He was very adamant about it: 'Don't talk to anybody about this. Don't talk to other flight attendants. Don't talk to your friends. Totally keep it a secret.' And so, you know, I tried to, as best as I could." [8] "The secrecy was huge. He, you know, forbade me to talk to other flight attendants, family, friends. I mean, it was supposed to be totally kept secret..." she told Hannity and Colmes. [9]

Condit stood behind the door when letting her in his apartment so that nobody in the hallway would be able to see him. Anne Marie also went downstairs out of his apartment building ahead of him, wait for him to catch up to her with sunglasses and a hat pulled down low, and go out to dinner incognito. Calling an answering service and leaving a message for Condit to call her back worked the same way as with Chandra as well.

Not being able to call Condit directly was not limited to his girlfriends. A former legislative director for Condit, Joe Thiessen, recalls that Condit never carried a cell phone or pager. Associated Press quotes Thiessen:

Clearly there were times that he didn't want anyone
to know where he was - and he was quite successful
at it. We would be scrambling to find him. He would
frequently borrow a car from someone on the staff
and take off for extended periods of time throughout
the day. He liked to be invisible in lots of ways.
But it was not my experience that there was a dark
side. [10]

The LA Times reports that Condit just dropped out of sight from his staff during the day. He would go to the gym or go get a tan on the Capitol balcony. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, he kept a bicycle in his office and rode off to Rock Creek Park during lulls.

One would think that Condit could be e-mailed, but there has never been an indication that he had a computer or used e-mail. Thinking about it, things like e-mail, a cell phone number you hand out, or having information on a laptop that someone may get a look at are not compatible with having multiple girlfriends who spend time with you at home. Everything was a secret. Chandra was to keep that secret, or, as she told Linda Zamsky, it was "done, over, kaput". How kaput remained to be seen.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2005 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Next chapter - Friendships

Murder on a Horse Trail - Table of Contents

1. Jardine, Jeff. “Condit faces new allegations.” Modesto Bee 4 July 2001.

2. Herendeen, Susan. “Congressman’s wife keeps low profile; friends offer support.”
Modesto Bee 4 July 2001.

3. Frey, Jennifer. “Lady of the House.” Washington Post 6 Aug. 2001.

4. Lathem, Niles. “Fly Gal: Condit Didn’t Want To ‘Pull a Newt’.” New York
Post 29 June 2001.

5. “Chandra’s Aunt’s Statement.” Fox News. 9 July 2001.

6. St. George, Donna, Allan Lengel and Petula Dvorak. “DC Intern Lived On
Edge of Secrecy.” Washington Post 8 July 2001

7. Frey, Jennifer. “Lady of the House.” Washington Post 6 Aug. 2001.

8. Smith, Anne Marie. Interview with Tony Snow and Rita Cosby. Fox News. 11
July 2001. Transcript.

9. Smith, Anne Marie and Jim Robinson. Interview with Sean Hannity and Alan
Colmes. Hannity and Colmes. Fox News. 28 May 2002. Transcript.

10. Riechmann, Deb. “The Contrasts of Condit.” Associated Press 13 July 2001.

Arax, Mark and Stephen Braun. “Condit: From Success to Scandal.” Los Angeles
Times 16 July 2001.

“Condit children quit California governor’s staff.” CNN. 28 Aug. 2001.

Depaulo, Lisa. Interview with Geraldo Rivera. Rivera Live. CNBC. 6 Aug. 2001.

Dvorak, Petula and Allan Lengel. “Condit Denies Asking Woman Not to Assist
Levy Inquiry, Former Driver Alleges Lawmaker Had Affair.” Washington Post 4
July 2001.

Flammini, Vince Interview with Geraldo Rivera. Geraldo. NBC. 17 July 2001.

Flammini, Vince. Interview with Sean Hannity and Alan Colmes. Hannity and
Colmes. Fox News. 27 Feb. 2002. Transcript.

Kennedy, Helen. “Condit Wove a Web of Lies, Say Ex-Lovers.” New York Daily
News 5 Aug. 2001.

Kennedy, Helen. “D.C. Cops Mystified As Intern Vanishes.” New York Daily
News 16 May 2001.

Lengel, Allan and Petula Dvorak. “Aunt Linda Details Chandra’s Affair with
Gary.” Washington Post 6 July 2001.

Levy, Robert and Susan. Interview with Stone Phillips. NBC News. 10 Aug.
2001. Transcript.

“Levy Relative Details Condit Affair.” ABC News. 6 July 2001.

“Levy’s parents say Chandra admitted affair.” CNN. 31 July 2001.

Lochhead, Carolyn. “A Power Broker Comes Of Age.” San Francisco Chronicle
18 Dec.1996.

Mattix, Cheryl. “Levy’s aunt speaks out.” Port Herman. 2 Aug. 2001.

Mooney, Michael G. “Smith details alleged Condit affair.” Modesto Bee 6 Sept.

Olson, Barbara, Mark Geragos, Cynthia Alksne and Julian Epstein. Interview
with Roger Cossack. Larry King Live. CNN. 2 Aug. 2001. Transcript.

Olson, Barbara, Mike Geragos, Cynthia Alksne, Julian Epstein, and Lisa DePaulo.
“Will Chandra Levy ever be found?” Interview with Larry King. Larry King
Live. CNN. 30 July 2001. Transcript.

“Police Keep Quiet on Levy Investigation.” Washington Times 23 Aug. 2001.

Robinson, Jim. Interview with Paula Zahn. The Edge. Fox News. 11 June 2001.

Smith, Anne Marie and Jim Robinson. Interview with Larry King. Larry King
Live. CNN. 13 July 2001. Transcript.
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