Thursday, January 2, 2014

Melissa Sowders Ex Husband Statement

Through lawyer, estranged husband of missing N. Harris County woman says he's not responsible

Husband's lawyer talks to Eyewitness News

From local ABC affiliate  Note statements 
We have new information in the search for a missing pregnant mother. Melissa Sowders' family has repeatedly stated that her estranged husband played a role in her disappearance. And now, through his lawyer, we have his side of the story.

The first says, "I just want her found. Please someone help me find her."

Note that he asks for help for himself. 
Note that "just" is reduction, indicating a comparison to something else (another idea).  What else might he be thinking that he feels the need to compare to wanting her found?  This is concerning.  

The second says, "Please just keep your eyes open."

Again, he uses the word "just" as a comparison.  What else would he like people to do?

As an explanation for this word:

Let's suppose I want to sell you a car for $15,000 but instead of showing it to you, I first show you a car for $20,000 even though I know you cannot afford it.  After showing it to you, I then say, "well, THIS one is just $15,000!"

"Just" can mean "only", or it can be used as a reduction (above), but in both scenarios, it is a comparison to something else.  We seek to learn why the subject feels the need to compare. 

A guilty person who says "I just want her found" is, first all of all, stating what does NOT even need to be stated:

"I want her found."

Why would this even need to be said?

But when he added, "I just want her found", it indicates that there is something else on his mind and a follow up question would help clarify.  

After Melissa Sowders disappeared, her estranged husband, Matthew, posted two messages on the Eyewitness News Facebook page.

Investigators say the messages were posted the day after Matthew Sowders had stopped cooperating with them, saying he wanted a lawyer. His attorney, Dustan Neyland, spoke to us on his behalf.
"Was Matthew involved in her disappearance?" we asked.

"Absolutely not," he told us.

Melissa Sowders, 26, vanished on December 26 after meeting Matthew at a McDonald's on FM 1960 where she was supposed to pick up their four children. The sheriff's office suspects foul play and is searching for her body.

So we asked what Matthew Sowders says happened that day.

"How did things end that day that he saw her? How did they part ways?" we asked.

"I can't make any comments on the police investigation. If there is anything, I'll let them reveal that to the media," Neyland answered.

We also asked why we aren't we hearing from Matthew himself.

"If he had nothing to do with it, what does he have to hide?" we asked.

Neyland answered, "He doesn't. He's already talked to police."
Jason Sanford, Melissa's boyfriend, and the father of her unborn child, disagrees.

"Every time she had to meet him to see her babies, she was always worried about him," said Sanford. "He scared her." Sanford claims the ex didn't know she was two-months pregnant with his child.

"She was afraid to tell him because of what she thought he might do because of previous physical abuse," said Sanford. "That she said, so she didn't want to tell him."
Texas Equusearch and detectives were busy focusing on a deep area of Cypress Creek Wednesday about a half mile east of I-45. They're using underwater cameras trying to make out an unidentified image.
They say they want to determine if it's possibly Sowders before calling in the dive team to look further.
"It's just waiting, we're waiting," said Sanford. "There's nothing else we can do but wait."
Detectives tell us Matthew Sowders is not being cooperative right now. On Monday, they seized his truck and are processing that as the investigation here continues. He has not been named as a suspect in this case.


Carnival Barker said...

"The sheriff's office suspects foul play and is searching for her body."

I'm gonna go out on a limb here and assume that the sheriff's department knows a tad more about what happened to her than they are telling the media. They only "suspect" foul play, but are searching for "her body"?

Carnival Barker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

The boyfriend does appear to be on some form of illegal narcotic or prescribed medication. His eyes are very dilated.
Pupils dilate also when it is darker to let in more light. However, given he is being interviewed in the dark and i would assume the camera has a light attached, his eye should be constricted, unless he is high on the above. This doesn't however point to guilt..His demeanor is inconsistent with his words, again this maybe due to the influence of illegal narcotics and or prescribed ones.

Their is lack of expected emotion both in him, and also her father. Again this is not to say they are someway involved, just that to me it is odd behaviour from the expected .

anonymous said...

His car has a black door(the sign of DRUGS).

Anonymous said...

I live about 5 miles from this creek. They found a body about 30 minutes ago. They are not saying if it's her, but you know it is. They are saying she was last seen at the McDonald's at 11:00 AM so it's looking like it is the estranged husband.

Anonymous said...

Jamie McDonald, Cross-Canada Charity Runner, Beaten By (3) Men On New Years Eve.

Randie said...

RED FLAG: Ex husband wants help for himself not her.


A Texas EquuSearch team located and is recovering a body in Cypress Creek near the residence of Melissa R. Sowders, 26, who was reported missing last week amid indications that she had been a victim of foul play. It was found underwater at about 9:30am Thursday by a volunteer searching the area.

Randie said...

Red flag 2."3 tines I searched for her"!!!

TrishapatK said...

I have seen different reports on whether or not she ever showed up at MacDonalds. One said that she didn't show up and another says that the last place she was seen was MacDonalds.
Do any of you know which is true? If she wasn't seen at MacDonalds then it would seem that the boyfriend was a more likely suspect ... if she was seen there then the estranged husband would of course seem more likely.
I still haven't seen anything that the husband has actually said, his facebook posts use the word just but the supposed minimizing might be more in reference to leaving him alone and just focusing on what matters which is finding her.
I have heard/read that the boyfriend is not a suspect and that his vehicle has been searched but that the husbands vehicle is still being searched. It seems like there is a lot that has not been reported publicly.
I have only seen the boyfriend speak and he was so strange that I cannot help but suspect him. I can't compare his words to those of the husband but they sure seem suspicious. His facial expressions and whatever emotions they supposedly portray seem out of whack with what is going on.
I am looking forward to reading about more facts on this case.

Anon "I" said...

Is "just" always meant to minimize? Sometimes, I say just when I really mean "only."

Anon "I" said...

"It's been a long week," Sanford said. "And now a little hope, a little relief... it's hard."

This quote is from the boyfriend near the end of the link above. "A little hope" and "a little relief," is what he says. It doesn't specify exactly when he said it, but does this sound as creepy to anyone else as it does to me? What "hope" would he be talking about if she is dead? Relief? For whom? If my loved one was missing for a short period of time, I don't think I would be saying I would feel relief they were dead.

TrishapatK said...

To Anon @ 3:05 and 3:25,
I agree with you about how strange it is for the boyfriend to say that this offers "hope" or "relief" ...

Isn't it the opposite of "hope or relief" to find out that no possibility now exists for her to be found alive. I would consider it to be the worst possible outcome. Now there is no hope for true relief - that of her being found alive.

He continues to say such odd things. How can it be that they don't consider him a suspect?

Anonymous said...

"The body has not yet been officially identified, but family members tell Eyewitness News they're confident it's Melissa, since detectives asked them about a tattoo."

Anon "I" said...

Wow! The comments at the 4:48pm post's link are something else. SMH.

Anon "I" said...

To TrishapatK at 4:03,
Saying odd things is right! He, also, said it was a "long week." "Long week" versus his girlfriend being presumably murdered.... ? No comparison. I was thinking the husband might really be innocent because the boyfriend is so... lets use the word... unconventional. All my humble opinion.

~mj said...

Comments from above link:
will • 5 hours ago −
The Sheriffs Department knew from day one her husband killed her. He ran his mouth and was ratted out. That's how they knew where to look for her. Stick a needle in him he's done.
18 •Reply•Share ›

hovyhov79 will • 5 hours ago −
Had to call crime stoppers on my dear friend he know he done it that's why he hired a lawyer .sad!
6 •Reply•Share ›

will hovyhov79 • 5 hours ago −
On day one of the search a deputy came by one of my job sites near the creek and told me the husband had said too much to a friend. Are you that friend?
2 •Reply•Share ›

hovyhov79 will • 4 hours ago −
Very sad.I feel for those children
2 •Reply•Share ›

hovyhov79 will • 4 hours ago −
Friend of that person
1 •Reply•Share ›

will hovyhov79 • 4 hours ago −
Did he come out and admit to killing her or just say he knew she was no longer alive?
3 •Reply•Share ›

hovyhov79 will • 4 hours ago −
Admit .. honesty I can't get to much in depth about the situation but his wife is no longer living and those angels are left without a Mother.

~not sure credibility on these comments. They do sound reasonable.

Maggie said...

"Every time she had to meet him to see her babies, she was always worried about him," said Sanford. "He scared her." Sanford claims the ex didn't know she was two-months pregnant with his child.

"She was afraid to tell him *BECAUSE* of what she thought he might do *BECAUSE* of previous physical abuse," said Sanford. "That she said, *SO* she didn't want to tell him."

These are the words of Melissa's boyfriend. Please don't get me wrong, I believe Melissa's ex-husband was abusive. All these abusers lie and say they never abused their wife and everyone who knows them thinks their just great.
But please, can someone look at the way Melissa's boyfriend worded the sentences above. I have capitalized the SCAN red flag words including "because" and "so". You can see a clear cluster. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Maggie said...

Also, in the sentences I just posted the phrase "she didn't want to tell him" is sensitive also, Melissa's boyfriend repeats it twice.

Here is what I think: of course she didn't want to tell him! Why is Jason stuck on this, why is he lying about it?
Did Jason tell the hubby behind her back as if to say "back off she's mine now!"
Or, is Jason using this as a ruse? Is he stuttering and stuck on this fact that she did not want to tell the ex-hubby to try to deflect attention from the true nature of what happened to Melissa which may have been by his own doing?

Notamuser said...

Missing mom's estranged husband arrested after body found near search area

Anonymous said...

i took it that the boy friend had a "lump in his throat" and that is what made his interview so weird because he couldnt hardly talk.
poor guy was probably just told by LE that his baby was dead.

Maggie said...

PLUS the car had BLACK DOORS.

Maggie said...

He has black car doors.

Tania Cadogan said...

"Was Matthew involved in her disappearance?" we asked.

"Absolutely not," he told us.

Oh dear, those two words say it all.

Shelley said...

Missing mom's estranged husband charged after body found near search area

Now I admit, I am shocked how fast he was charged. I am curious if there was just very clear evidence or the other cases just have sucky cops/DA

Maggie said...

"She was afraid to tell him *BECAUSE* of what she thought he might do *BECAUSE* of previous physical abuse," said Sanford. "That she said, *SO* she didn't want to tell him."

These are the words of Jason, Melissa's boyfriend.

Can one of the more knowledgeable posters shed some light on this?
This appears to be a cluster of words that would be flagged by SCAN indicating deception.

Why would he lie about this?

1) If she HAD told her ex-husband about being pregnant by the boyfriend, why would he not admit this? If anything, this would make the ex-husband look like the guilty person.

2) When I look at the statement, I see deception, and I feel the deception may have been that perhaps Jason WANTED her to tell the ex-husband, perhaps as a way of CLAIMING her as his own to prevent any possible reunion with the ex-husband and the possibility she might tell the ex-husband the baby was actually his. Could Melissa have said "No I will not tell him I am pregnant with your baby. I am afraid of him." And Jason insisted she do so at the McDonald's meeting, finds out she didn't tell him, and lashed out killing her?

I just want to know if these words indicate deception according to SCAN. Thank you.

shelley said...

For anyne that missed my earlier post since all tge loser trolls are back.

Melissas ex husband was arrested.

The estranged husband of a missing pregnant mother of four was taken into custody Thursday, just hours after a body believed to be hers was pulled from Cypress Creek. And now, he's charged with capital murder.

A Texas EquuSearch team located a body in Cypress Creek near the residence of Melissa R. Sowders, 26, who was reported missing last week amid indications that she had been a victim of foul play. The body was found underwater at about 9:30am Thursday by a volunteer searching the area.

The body has not yet been officially identified, but family members tell Eyewitness News they're confident it's Melissa, since detectives asked them about a tattoo.

Thursday afternoon, Matthew Sowders, 28, was arrested and charged with capital murder.

Related Content

STORY: Estranged husband of missing woman tells his side

STORY: Missing mom's ex no longer cooperating

STORY: Search continues for missing pregnant mom

STORY: Search underway for missing pregnant mom

STORY: Investigators fear foul play in missing woman case

MORE: Free ABC13 iPhone, iPad and Android apps

MORE: Got a story idea? Let us know!

Sowders is the pregnant mother of four, who mysteriously disappeared on December 26 after meeting her estranged husband at a nearby McDonald's on FM 1960, where she was supposed to pick up their children.

EquuSearch said they nearly gave up efforts to recover her Thursday morning, after an intense six day search in and around Cypress Creek. But that crew says something told them to come back out to an area of the creek, about half a mile east of I-45, where they picked up sonar images.

Sowder's family says they're confident the victim will be identified as the missing mom, and they're relieved investigators didn't give up.

Melissa's cousin Michelle Bierman said,"EquuSearch did a tremendous job. They're a Godsend. We couldn't have done this without them. They are forever in our hearts and will be a part of our family."

Detectives say Matthew Sowders is not being cooperative in their investigation, but his attorney denies he has any involvement in her disappearance. On Monday, they seizepd Sowders' truck. Then late Thursday afternoon, Sowders was taken into custody.

Lemon said...

RE: Jamie McDonald, Cross-Canada Charity Runner, Beaten By 3 Men On New Years Eve


"McDonald took to his Twitter account pleading for help finding his missing bag, containing his credit cards, identification and video of his cross-Canada run to raise money for charity.

McDonald says his bag was left behind in a hotel room downtown after a surprise scuffle with men he’d been drinking with at 3 a.m.

“I got caught up and dragged into a hotel room and three guys let me have it. I scrambled out and left, and I left my bag back in the room with all my possessions,” McDonald told the Herald.

Banff RCMP later located the bag, and all of its contents.

“Luckily, they left it there,” McDonald said.

McDonald, 27, is running across Canada to raise money for charity."

Maggie said...

"She was afraid to tell him *BECAUSE* of what she thought he might do *BECAUSE* of previous physical abuse," said Sanford. "That she said, *SO* she didn't want to tell him."

Thank you to the anon who responded to me.
My understanding of this scan technique is that in an "open statement" where the subject seems to be "leading", building on his/her speech, using "because" and "so", if there is a cluster, the content is deceptive.
There is a cluster here.
I absolutely do believe the ex-husband was abusive, but this statement seems deceptive.
I can spot this in speech. The person is "building" in their speech.
For example, let's say I want to lie about why I did not call my friend back. My friend says "You never called me back."
I say "Um yeah I didn't call you back BECAUSE I had to go to the store BECAUSE I was out of milk. SO I couldn't call you back."

I feel the boyfriend is lying about the ex-husband not being told by someone--either himself or by Melissa.

Unknown said...

Hi Maggie,

What you are referencing is called a 'cluster of blues'. In SA two things are given the highest sensitivity...the word 'left' when used as a verb/to describe departure, and the word(s) because, so, therefore, etc, to describe WHY something happened. This is because the subject seeks to explain their answer/actions, rather than simply convey the information. (when speaking in free editing process)

*(If the subject was asked 'Why', and then responded with 'because', the answer is appropriate. This may have been the case with the boyfriends quote since he was being interviewed).

When several 'blue' words appear together in a cluster, the subject is speaking about a highly sensitive subject, and if questioning is focused on that topic, the case will likely be solved.

In this case, it is not surprising that Sowder's boyfriend is focused on the topic of her fear of her ex, and her reluctance to tell him about her current pregnancy. He (boyfriend) likely feels that the pregnancy is the reason her estranged husband killed her, and in my opinion it's likely that her pregnancy did play some role in her death. Whether she actually told him herself is unknown, but it would be hard to hide that kind of information for long considering her extended family appeared to know.

With all that has unfolded, it seems pretty clear the husband is responsible. They were able to charge him with capital murder hours after finding her body, even before officially ID'ing her. They must have had good leads that brought them to her body, his truck, etc. I have read in the comments of several articles that he confessed to a friend or relative who shared the info with LE, and pointed them toward the area where she was found. I didn't know how reliable when I read it, but it seems to have pretty much played out that way.

Sad. RIP Melissa.

Maggie said...

Jen--Thank you! You explained things beautifully, and I appreciate it!

This case is very tragic, and I think you are right (and perhaps what I was picking up on) is that the ex somehow finding out about the pregnancy played a role in her being killed by the ex.
It is very sad, because it seems she just had wanted a way out, to get away from the ex, and probably the new guy was a lot better than the first.
I did not know he confessed to a friend, but that would explain why the police arrested him so quickly.
So tragic for the 4 kids who lost their mother.
Thank you again for explaining the high sensitivity areas of SCAN and for explaining the sensitivity with a subject explaining their own answers instead of simply supplying information.

Pak31 said...

The ex has been arrested and charged. Look at his picture. What was this woman thinking with either man??? Wow. I hate to be judgmental but these people are not the best of society. She didn't choose decent guys to get involved with.

Anonymous said...

It seems police got evidence early on about the ex husband's involvement.
I just wonder, why did they not inform child protective services to remove the children asap? Thank goodness he did not harm them.

Anonymous said...

I do not doubt for one moment that this poor woman lived a life of hell on this earth at the hands of this abusive brute beast, and with no way out other than to try to find another man she could escape with who might love her. An outsiders view is; that God only knows the explosive violence her children may have been exposed too as he cursed, threatened and beat their mother relentlessly whenever the least little thing triggered him.

Did she really have any other choice but to run? I don't think so. My heart really goes out to her for the mess she got herself into; only 26 yrs old would mean that she got involved with him at only 16 to 17 yrs old since her oldest child is now 8+ yrs old.

It must be hell to have to walk out and leave your babies after taking so much abuse and fighting so hard to be able to stay with them. Who can know why her soon to be ex finally killed her since he already had the kids and would have owed her no support, not even a crumb of bread or a bed, under the circumstances of her living with another man, etc;

however, I am speculating that somehow it came out that she was pregnant by the other man and this may be the final straw that led to him killing her; that, plus it would have been unquestionable that she had already been involved with the new b/f for sometime prior to leaving him.

I think it was really mean for those who made fun of or questioned why she had to drive an old car with a black replacement door when she had no other choice; or to make fun of her heartbroken sister for trying to look the best she could. I don't see how she managed to look as good as she did in the situation she was in.

You people need to be more careful in how you 'put down' other unfortunate souls while kicking them in the teeth when you don't know their circumstances. Then there's the matter of tearing apart every word that came out of the innocent B/Fs mouth who was clearly illiterate and uneducated, merely trying to speak out while like a deer caught in the headlights. Just MOO.

Notamuser said...

Agreed anon 7:24am. I enjoy SA for its educational content. I also enjoy reading the comments that are written in that vein.

The judgmental comments...

Eph. 4:29 (Use words to build others up!)

Maggie said...

You want to know why she didnt choose decent men? Take a look at how upset her father (does not) appear to be in the interview.
I got raised by a Dad who didnt give a sh@t about me and actually used to beat me. It takes a real scumbag of a man to hit a little girl. It knocks your self-esteem down quite a bit.
Did her Dad even go out and search for her? He didnt appear very upset to me. Did he ever offer her and her kids shelter from the ex who he knew beat her? Why did she need to run into the arms of the drugged out boyfriend? Seems like dear old Dad was letting his daughter fend for herself in the face of a brute who she felt terrified of.
And then he has the nerve to say (after his daughter has gone missing and is sispected of being the victim of foul play) in a calm voice that he is "just sad and worried". You get "sad and worried" if your pet is missing. You should be beside yourself w anguish if your daughter is missing and feared dead.

Anonymous said...

Maggie, why so judgmental?

Maggie said...

1). Why didnt her Dad offer her shelter? Better for her to be with a meth head and have to leave her kids behind with a monster?

2) Why didnt her Dad go with her when she had to go visit her babies? If I was a Dad I sure as hell would not allow my daughter to have to go by herself to risk her life to see her babies around a man she was terrified of!
3) Was Dad out searching for her? Because if I was a Dad I sure as hell would have and I would have been absolutely enraged at the ex-husband who he said he suspected. Did you see any rage in his interview? Did you see any type of extreme emotion? I didnt! Was he out searching? No, he wasnt! He was losing sleep and "glued to his phone"?! If I was a Dad I would have been out there searching night and day until I collapsed. Not at home "glued to his phone".
This an example of what happens when a father does not protect his daughter. Even when she was suspected to be the victim of foul play, still, he didnt seem to feel any anger at the ex-husband.
This is not how a father should act. I really could care less who disagrees with me.

Anonymous said...

Maggie, excellent posts @ 12:48 and 2:04 p.m. I agree with you 100%; this dad should have been trying to look after his daughter and doing whatever he could to help her with her kids and do his best to protect her from this savage beast she was married too instead of just sitting idly by all those years, even when she went missing.

Poor woman, she had to be living like a battered beaten helpless lamb with no help and no one to turn too, ever, until near the end when she finally thought she'd found a way out of her abuse. Who can say, but she may have intended to try to get her kids out too as soon as she could.

Old dad doesn't hesitate to make it clear that he suspected the estranged husband, so you know from this that he knew his daughter was scared to death of this monster for good reason, just as her kids would have been terrified too.

No, he did not care. If there can be an excuse for him at all; my guess is that he was angry all of this time because she had married a black man and had born mixed children. If true, still, this is no excuse. If he has a conscience at all, he will spend long lonely nights in remorse over how he lost his daughter long before she was murdered, even to his deathbed and beyond; and could still end up having to help raise her children. Pity the poor children.

I am sorry for what you went through with your own father, Maggie.

Randie said...

Someone has pornography material on her under my name Randie. Peter please get rid of it!!!!!!

Kellie Sue said...

Woman found in creek was strangled, prosecutors say