Thirty-seven-year-old Mary Critchley was murdered sometime between July 25, 1981, when she attempted to hitch a ride from Framingham, MA to Waterbury, VT, and August 9, 1981, when her body was discovered in the woods of rural Unity, NH.
I performed my “Rogue’s Gallery” spread to see what it might tell me about this cold case, which turned out to be not much. I used the Golden Universal RWS deck for this reading, with reversals. The Ace of Swords “pointer” card appeared in the second round of the draw, landing on top of the Knight of Wands reversed. Only the Ace of Cups stood between the Knight and the Ace of Swords.
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The location of the Knight of Wands shows that the perpetrator wasn’t someone she knew, and the mobility of the Knight is consistent with a situation that evolved from a random pick-up along the Massachusetts Turnpike. The card indicates a vigorous man in the prime of life, between the ages of 25 and 45, and the reversal suggests that his intentions were devious from the start. This description no doubt fits the profile of any number of typical murder suspects, so there is little to go on here
I traced the most practical route between Exit 13 in Framingham and the town of Unity, NH, which turned out to be I-90 West to I-91 North; the interesting thing is that Unity isn’t exactly on the “beaten path.” There are limited ways to cross the Connecticut River from the Vermont side that offer even marginally direct access to the town, either at Route 11 in Springfield or at Route 103 in Ascutney. Neither of these routes provides “dump-and-run” convenience for anyone traveling I-91 looking for a secluded spot, so the implication is that the suspect was familiar with the area and wasn’t pressed for time in getting out into the countryside. Although I see nothing in the cards to support it, I get a strong psychic impression that he had the “child locks” turned on in his car, preventing any hope of escape.
The intervening Ace of Cups gives me the idea he may have invited her to stop for a drink or other sensory indulgence somewhere before “giving her the sword,” which in this scenario has sexual as well as murderous implications. She would have been disarmed by this ploy and taken off-guard by what followed. The medical examiner was unable to determine a cause of death, so it’s doubtful any other evidence about her physical condition was obtainable.
Using the horoscopic overlay I mentioned in my last reading, the Knight of Wands showed up in the southeast quadrant, implying that – if he is still alive – he may now be living in eastern Massachusetts.