Sad news from New Orleans this morning — they found the car of Terrilyn Monette with a decomposing body inside of it.
Minor news for just about everyone, but it’s personal interest for me.
Ms. Monette went missing in early April. She’d closed down a bar in our old neighborhood that we used to frequent 15-18 years ago. She was recorded on security cameras leaving alone; that doesn’t rule out foul play, but if you know New Orleans another possibility becomes likely.
At the time, my wife and I agreed that they were probably going to find her car in the water eventually.
New Orleans has canals and bayous right in the middle of the city. And most of the don’t have any sort of barrier or guard rail: they’re scenic watercourses that are open for walking and fishing from the banks.
The thing is, the water is murky, and usually pretty deep. Murky like in a reality show like Duck Dynasty, with visibility about a foot looking into the water. And still waters run deep — perhaps 10-15 feet, without any solid bottom. When a car drives into these waters, they’re just gone.
So I wasn’t surprised when they found her car, or when they announced that they had already searched this very spot. This happened every couple of months in New Orleans.
Here’s a screen capture from Google Earth:
Bayou St. John is in the background beyond the trees. I’ve been through the intersection of these two boulevards … perhaps a thousand times. That’s why the case interests me.
Those curbs are not high, you could easily drive over them … and they aren’t on all sides of the road. And this is quite a big view going into the distance … the breaks in the trees in the distance are usually big enough to drive two cars through side by side.
Ms. Monette probably either veered off the road on the left through the trees by the second red light, merged to the right and veered through the trees, or merged right to make a “California left” or “jug handle” through the break in the boulevard’s neutral ground towards the top right and lost control in the trees. These are mistakes anyone could make in the night.
FWIW: NOPD had looked in this spot, but had focused their efforts on a similar intersection about a mile west of this spot (due to their interpretation of grainy shots from a red light camera). That’s an even tougher spot to search, with another canal and much thicker brush.