WARNING: This is a long post, so the reader may want to read it in installments. Make sure you bookmark this page so that, if you need to, you can return to finish reading this post.
There are those in the blogosphere who maintain or at the very least suspect that the official story of the Dec. 14, 2012 Sandy Hook massacre isn’t true, and who have raised the matter of the rather strange sale date and price of the homes of some of the victims. See, for example, this discussion on a Godlike Productions chat forum.
Their hypothesis goes something like this:
If the massacre, wholly or in part, were a contrived conspiracy — for example, a drill (or a drill that went very bad) — then the major participants or “players” in the elaborate charade would have to be paid off in some way or another.
Indeed, a year ago, in February 2013, I had noticed the same thing — that some of the homes of Sandy Hook victims all had an odd sale/purchase date of 12/25/2009, and an equally odd sale/purchase price of $0.
I had found that information on the website of Vision Government Solutions (VGS), a company that calls itself “a leading supplier of land parcel management software technology and services to local government organizations, enabling efficient assessment, billing, collections, mapping, and permitting.” One of the services provided by VGS is an online database of residential properties in nine states in the northeastern and eastern U.S., one of which is the state of Connecticut. If you know the address of a home in, say, Newtown, CT, you can look up the property’s value, present owner(s), and price history on VGS’s database.
At the time, in February of last year, puzzled by those strange 12/25/2009 sale date and $0 sale price of Newtown homes, I had sent this email to VGS:
Date: 02/05/13 01:43 PM
Subject: Feedback from the Newtown, CT page
Hello, While browsing real estate properties using this database, I noticed a number of homes have the same “date of sale” of 12/25/2009, and a “sale price” of 0 (zero). Please be so kind as to explain. How can a home be sold or purchased for $0?
This was the response I received:
Feb. 5, 2013
Thank you for your inquiry Dr ____. In most instances of a sale price of $0 the reason would be because of a family sale where the house ownership is simply transferred. [In other words, no money actually changed hands.] The other reason for that to happen would be a town entering a parcel into their database for the first time they must put a first owner and a sale price. Often times they will put $0 as a filler price. The sale date of 12/25/2009 would be the same thing.
(Name withheld at the request of the CSR -June 2, 2014)
Customer Support Representative (CSR)
Vision Government Solutions
44 Bearfoot Road
Northboro, MA 01532
In addition to emailing VGS, I had also called the Assessor’s Office at Newtown, CT, and left a voice mail asking the same question about the 12/25/2009 sale date and $0 sale price.
An administrative assistant at the Assessor’s Office, Andrea Santillo, promptly returned my phone call. She said that the Newtown city government recently had switched to a new computer system and had not been able to enter the property data for all Newtown homes. So the computer used the 12/25/2009 and $0 as, respectively, a “filler” default sale date and price.
Ms. Santillo’s explanation seemed plausible, and so I did not pursue the matter any further. But that doesn’t mean I’d forgotten about it.
Flash forward a year. I decided to revisit this matter, and went back to VGS’s database. Lo and behold, the strange sale date and price are still there.
So I undertook a systematic investigation into the properties of every Sandy Hook (SH) victim, as well as those of certain non-victims, such as Gene Rosen, who had a prominent media presence in the days immediately after the massacre. What follows is my report on my findings, beginning with my methodology.
1. From media accounts, I made a list of the names of all SH victims, including:
- The 20 school children who were killed, as well as the names of their parents.
- The 7 adults who were killed: 6 at SHES; and Nancy Lanza, mother of alleged shooter Adam Lanza.
2. To that list, I added 6 more people who are not victims but had played significant roles in the aftermath of the massacre. They are:
- Gene Rosen, who live next to SHES and gave many TV interviews.
- Laura and Nick Phelps, parents of unharmed SHES students who gave media interviews and who bear a striking resemblance to professional “crisis actors” Jennifer Greenberg Sexton and Richard Sexton. (See “Remarkable resemblance of Sandy Hook victims and professional crisis actors“)
- The three members of Newtown’s governing body, the Board of Selectmen: Elin Patricia Llodra, William Rodgers, and James Gaston Sr. (Newtown does not have a mayor.)
4. I then looked up the price history of those addresses on four websites:
- Vision Government Solutions.
- Trulia, a real estate website.
- Zillow, a real estate website. (Neither Trulia nor Zillow gives the names of property owners.)
- Connecticut Town Clerks Portal, a website of land records — including Newtown’s — which allows only those who have paid a fee to search its records. Interestingly, after I had paid for a 24-hour access to the site, I got this message about Newtown: “The mortgages, liens and probate certificates of the town of Newtown are not available online at this time.”
Homes with strange sale date (12/25/2009) and price ($0):
1. Brian, 38, & Shannon Engel (parents of child victim Olivia Engel, 6):
84 Berkshire Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Brian Engel & Shannon Merlino
- Sold to Brian Engel & Shannon Merlino on 12/25/2009 for $0
- Sold to Brian Engel & Shannon Merlino on 6/25/2004 for $272,00
- Sold to Constance Chimileski on 1/20/2004 for $0
2. Robert Gay, 54, & Michele Hartman, 41 (parents of child victim Josephine Gay, 7):
10 Nighthawk Lane, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Robert E. Gay & Michelle Hartman
- Sold to Stephen & Gail Sonne on 1/16/2013 for $678,500
- Sold to Robert & Michele Gay on 12/25/2009 for $0
- Sold to Robert & Michele Gay on 3/7/2006 for $933,000
- Sold to Elite Builders Group LLC on 10/28/2004 for $300,000
Trulia’s price history on this property: 1/16/2013 $678,500; 3/7/2006 $933,000.
3. Nicole & Ian Hockley (parents of Dylan Hockley, 6):
Rented 39 Yogananda Street, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owners are Elizabeth and Kenneth Pheasey who bought the house on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Trulia’s price history: 4/30/2004 $725,000; 12/11/1998 $403,200; 8/17/1998 $105,500.
4. John Hsu & Donna Arnold, 46 (parents of Madeleine Hsu, 6):
Curiously, Spokeo says both Hsu and Arnold are “single”
35 Narragansett Trl, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Long-Fong Hsu & Donna Arnold
- Sold to Long-Fong Hsu & Donna Arnold on 7/16/2010 for $455,000
- Sold to Cherie Bragg & Michael Mastriano on 4/7/2009 for $0
- Sold to Cherie Bragg-Cebry on 6/15/2007 for $628,000
- Sold to Lawrence T. Card on 3/18/2003 for $487,000
5. Matthew, 41, & Jennifer Hubbard (parents of Catherine Hubbard, 6):
10 Walker Hill Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Kevin Casey & Priscilla Wright
- Sold to Kevin Casey & Priscilla Wright on 7/24/2012 for $365,000
- Sold to Matthew & Jennifer Hubbard on 12/25/2009 for $0
- Sold to Matthew & Jennifer Hubbard on 8/1/2005 for $435,000
- Trulia has only these sale dates: 7/24/2012 $365,000; 8/1/2005 $435,000
6. Stephen, 49, & Rebecca Kowalski (parents of Chase Kowalski, 7):
Note: The Kowalskis had fashioned a very interesting charity poster to memorialize their dead son. See “Illuminati eye symbol in Sandy Hook charity poster“.
6 Bennetts Bridge Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner: Stephen Kowalski
Ownership history: Sold to Stephen Kowalski on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Trulia has only one sale date: 2/24/1994 $170,500.
7. Scarlett Lewis (parent of Jesse Lewis, 6):
6 Great Ring Road, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner: Newtown Forest Association Inc
Ownership history: Purchased by Newtown Forest Association Inc. on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Trulia has 2 sale dates: 8/17/1998 $260,000; 8/1/1995 $225,000.
8. James S. Greene & Nelba Marquez-Greene (parents of Ana Marquez-Greene, 6):
29 Buttonball Dr, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: James S. Greene & Nelba Marquez Greene
- Sold to James S. Greene Jr & Nelba Marquez Greene on 8/16/2012 for $0
- Sold to James S. Greene Jr on 8/3/2012 for $277,000
- Sold to Deborah A. Makl & David George Makl on 12/25/2009 for $0
Trulia has 2 sale dates: 8/3/2012 $277,000; 9/27/2001 $95,000.
9. Christopher & Lynn Zapf McDonnell (parents of Grace McDonnell, 7):
4 Bresson Farm Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1566
VGS says Owner of record: Christopher & Lynn Zapf McDonnell
Ownership history: Sold to Christopher & Lynn Zapf McDonnell on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Zillow has one sale date for this property: 3/24/2000 $453,000
10. Anne Marie Murphy, 52:
(Strangely, both Email Finder and Spokeo think Anne Marie Murphy is still alive, age 53)
37 Great Ring Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1638
VGS says Owner of Record is Ann Marie Murphy
Ownership history: Sold to Ann Marie Murphy on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Trulia has only 1 sale date: 9/4/1998 $291,000
11. Robbie & Alissa Parker (parents of Emilie Parker, 6):
13 Country Squire Rd., Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says owner of record: Robert & Alissa Parker
- Sold to Robert & Alissa Parker on 4/2/2012 for $359,900
- Sold to Robert & Linda Spolar on 12/25/2009 for $0
12. Dean A., 42, & Tricia L. Pinto (parents of Jack Pinto, 6):
4 Cobblers Mill Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1458
VGS says Owner of Record: Dean A. & Tricia L. Pinto
- Sold to Dean & Tricia Pinto on 12/25/2009 for $0
- Sold to Dean & Tricia Pinto on 7/29/2005 for $607,000
- Sold to Carl & Gail Coken on 12/11/2003 for $519,000
13. Veronique, 46, & Lenny Pozner (parents of Noah Pozner, 6):
(Curiously, Noah’s dad, Lenny, was not at his son’s open-casket funeral.)
3 Kale Davis Rd. Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1537
VGS says Owner of Record: Veronique Pozner
- Sold to Veronique Pozner on 3/17/2009 for $0
- Sold to Leonard & Veronique Pozner on 6/20/2005 for $470,000
14. Jeffrey W., 42, & Sandra Previdi (parents of Caroline Previdi, 6):
44 Grand Pl, Newtown, CT 06470
VGS says Owner of Record: Eugene & Helen Previdi (Jeff’s parents)
Ownership history: Sold to Helen J. & Eugene A. Previdi Jr on 12/25/2009 for $0.
There is no Trulia price history on this property.
15. Jennifer Hensel & Jeremy Richman (parent of Avielle Richman, 6):
41 Berkshire Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS Ownership history:
- Sold to Jennifer & Jeremy Richman on 4/21/2011 for $560,000
- Sold to MaryJane Wheble on 12/25/2009 for $0
Trulia has 2 sale dates: 4/21/2011 $560,000; 8/19/1999 $360,000.
16. Mary Sherlach, 56:
33 Vintage Rd, Trumbull, CT 06611
VGS says Owner of Record: William D. and Mary J. Sherlach
Ownership history: Sold to William D. & Mary J. Sherlach on 4/30/93 for $0.
Trulia has 1 sale date: 4/30/1993 $307,000.
17. Benjamin, 40, & Cheyenne Wyatt (parents of Allison Wyatt, 6):
83 Berkshire Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1427
VGS says Owner of Record: Benjamin & Cheyanne Wyatt
- Sold to Benjamin & Cheyanne Wyatt on 12/25/2009 for $0
- Sold to Benjamin & Cheyanne Wyatt on 7/1/04 for $461,000
Trulia’s price history: sold 6/26/1998 $275,000; sold 12/27/1994 $242,500
18. Nicholas (“Nick”) & Laura Phelps:
15 Walnut Trl, Sandy Hook, CT 06482-1148
VGS says owner of record: Zhiwen Ma & Weiyan Xia
Ownership history: Sold to Zhiwen Ma & Weiyan Xia on 12/25/09 for $0
Trulia’s price history: 2/5/2002 $337,500; 6/5/2001 $329,000; 8/24/1999 $247,300; 3/26/1999 $40,000.
19. Eugene (“Gene”) Rosen:
22 Riverside Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner Name: Eugene E. & Marilyn Rosen
Ownership history: Sold to Eugene E. & Marilyn Rosen on 12/25/2009 for $0
Trulia no price history on this property.
Zillow says “historical transaction data is not available for this home.”
20. E. (Elin) Patricia Llodra, 70:
Llodra is the First Selectman and head of Newtown’s 3-member Board of Selectmen who supervise the administration of the town. Like the other two board members (#21 and #22 below), Llodra was elected to a 2-year term (12/1/2011 to 12/1/2013), which means the three were in charge of Newtown at the time of the Sandy Hook massacre. All three were recently reelected to another 2-year term (12/1/2013 to 12/1/2015).
A year ago, when I looked up Ellin P. Llodra on people search engines, her address was listed as 90 Riverside Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482.
VGS a year ago and today says Owner of Record: Robert M. & Ellin P. Llodra
Ownership history: Sold to Robert M. & Ellin P. Llodra on 12/25/2009 for $0.
Trulia has no price history on this property.
But when I look up Ellin Llodra on people search today, her address is listed as 3 Primrose St., Newtown, CT 06470, which is the address of the Newtown Municipal Center, and is owned by the Town of Newtown, with a sale date of 12/25/2009 and a sale price of $0.
21. William Rodgers (2nd member of Newtown’s Board of Selectmen):
208 Hattertown Rd, Newtown, CT 06470
VGS says Owners: William & Moira Rodgers
Ownership history: Sold to William & Moira Rodgers on 12/25/2009 for $0
Trulia’s price history: 4/22/1992 $362,000
22. James Gaston Sr. (3rd member of Newtown’s Board of Selectmen):
18 Main St., Newtown, CT 06470
VGS says Owner: Stephanie A. Gaston
Ownership history: Sold to Stephanie A. Gaston on 12/25/2009 for $0
Trulia’s price history: 10/2/1992 $262,500
HOMES WITH “NORMAL” SALE DATES AND PRICES:
1. Joel, 43, & JoAnn Bacon (parents of child victim Charlotte Bacon, 6):
12 Lyrical Ln, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
Owner of Record: Joel Bacon, JoAnn Bacon
- Sold to Joel & JoAnn Bacon on 8/20/2007 for $387,500
- Sold to Jeffrey & Lisa Fox on 9/13/2004 for 350,000
2. Mark, 49 & Jacqueline Barden (parents of child victim Daniel Barden, 7):
35 Paugussett Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
Owner: Mark & Jacqueline Barden
- Sold to Mark & Jacqueline Barden on 10/19/2007 for $450,000
- Sold to Catherine Austermann on 4/7/2004 for $452,500
3. Dawn L. Hochsprung (aka Dawn A. Lafferty), 48:
Spokeo seems to think Dawn L Hochsprung is still alive, saying that she is “in a relationship” w/ George Hochsprung, 71; lives at 11 Upper Cmns, Woodbury, CT 06798. VGS does not list Woodbury, CT on its online database. Trulia says 11 Upper Commons is a condo that was sold on Sept. 22, 2003 for $136,000.
Email Finder has a George Hochsprung, 71, at 4 Heather Ct, Woodbury, CT 06798. Trulia says 4 Heather Ct is a condo that was sold on Aug. 20, 2012 for $223,500.
4. Mark A., 43, & Cynthia Radley Mattioli, 42 (parents of James Mattioli, 6):
67 Great Ring Rd, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Mark & Cynthia Mattioli
Ownership History: Sold to Mark & Cynthia Mattioli on 8/3/07 for $585,000
4. Richard, 36, & Krista Rekos, 36 (parents of Jessica Rekos, 6):
5 Sweetbriar Ln, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says Owner of Record: Richard S. and Krista A. Rekos
Ownership history: Sold to Richard & Krista Rekos on 6/23/2010 530,000
5. Lauren Rousseau, 30:
Email Finder has a Lauren Gabrielle Rousseau, age 31
Address: 1 Osborne St, Danbury, CT 06810-5917
VGS says Owner of Record: Teresa B. Rousseau
Ownership history: Sold to Teresa B. Rousseau, age 63, on 6/15/1994 for $0
Trulia has no price history on this property.
6. Victoria Soto, 27:
Email Finder has a Victoria A. Soto, age 29, at 191 Sherman Ave # 1, Meriden, CT 06450-3353; and 126 Spring St, Meriden, CT 06451-5433. Meriden is 32.5mi (35 mins.) to the east of Newtown. SH school is now relocated to Monroe, CT, 6 mi south of Newtown.
7. David & Francine Wheeler (parents of Benjamin Wheeler, 6):
10 Lakeview Terrace, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says owners are David & Francine Wheeler
- Sold to David & Francine Wheeler on 7/27/2007 for $365,000
- Sold to Michael Bloxam on 1/9/2004 for $162,500
Trulia has 3 sale dates: 1/9/2004 $162,500; 5/1/2000 $145,950; 9/2/1994 $85,000.
8. Nancy J. Lanza, 52:
36 Yogananda St, Sandy Hook, CT 06482
VGS says owner is Nancy J. Lanza
- Sold to Estate of Nancy J. Lanza on 2/1/2013 for $0
- Sold to Nancy Lanza on 2/8/2011 for $0
Trulia price history: 7/23/1998 $405,900; 7/30/1997 $99,500.
To do the property searches on VGS yourself:
- Go to Vision Government Solutions’ website: http://www.vgsi.com/vision/Applications/ParcelData/Home.aspx
- Click “Connecticut” on left side of page. This will take you to:
- Online Database for the cities of Connecticut: http://www.vgsi.com/vision/Applications/ParcelData/CT/Home.aspx
- Scroll down until you see “Newtown.” Click “Newtown”.
- This will take you to the Assessors Online Database for Newtown, CT: http://data.visionappraisal.com/NewtownCT/DEFAULT.asp
- Click the box “Enter Online Database”.
- You’ll be taken to the “Property Assessment Search / Newtown CT” page: http://data.visionappraisal.com/NewtownCT/search.asp
- Type in the number and street name, then click “Search”.
The homes of 15 of the 20 Sandy Hook child victims, 1-2 of the 7 adult victims, and all 6 of the Sandy Hook adult non-victims (the Phelps, Gene Rosen, the three Selectmen) have the mysterious sale date and $0 sale price.
At the very least, that is interesting. The three Selectmen are especially interesting because if the hypothesis is that the massacre was a contrived event, then Newtown’s highest governing body would have to be “in the know.”
Your guess is as good as mine as to what all those strange 12/25/2009 sale dates and $0 sale price mean. I’d appreciate input from readers of this blog who are in the real estate business and can shed some light on what the odd sale date and sale price mean.
For the links to all the posts we’ve done on Sandy Hook, go to our “Sandy Hook Massacre” page.