A new witness says James Steen and another man discussed having the van used in Heidi Allen's kidnapping crushed at a Volney scrapyard with her body inside.
New statements, made in sworn affidavits by Amanda Braley and two others, say the van was crushed at Crosby Hill Auto Recycling in Volney. It was owned by Richard Murtaugh in the 1990??s. A DEC complaint from 2005 states that there was a car crusher at Crosby Hill Auto Recycling from 1991 until December 2003.
When asked about allegations that the van used in Heidi Allen's kidnapping had been crushed at Crosby Hill, Richard Murtaugh told CNY Central "In '94 we gave the sheriffs statements. That's all I can tell you. Ask them for the statements." Murtaugh then ended a phone call with a reporter.
Lisa Peebles, from Gary Thibodeau's legal team, told CNY Central that no statement from Richard Murtaugh was provided to Thibodeau's original defense attorney in 1994 and they do not have one now.
Oswego County D.A. Gregory Oakes said Wednesday that he is not commenting on new allegations at this point. Oakes said he is working on a response to the motion filed by Thibodeau's attorneys and expects to file it next month.
In the affidavit, Amanda Braley says that while she was friends with Steen and Roger Breckenridge in the early 2000's, the two men had multiple conversations about having the van crushed and sent to Canada.
"I heard them say her body was still in the van and she would never be found," said Braley.
Other witnesses have said a former driver for an auto recycling company told them he believed Heidi Allen was in a crushed car sent to Canada. Last month, another witness told CNY Central at a rally for Gary Thibodeau, that James Steen had talked about having the van Heidi Allen was kidnapped in crushed and sent to Canada.
Neither Steen nor Breckenridge have ever been charged in connection with Allen's disappearance. Both men have denied any involvement in statements to police.
Gary Thibodeau was convicted of kidnapping Allen in 1994. His attorneys have filed a motion to overturn his conviction based on information provided by new witnesses and materials they say were improperly withheld from Thibodeau's 1994 defense attorney.
Amanda Braley says in her sworn affidavit that Jennifer Wescott was involved in conversations with Steen and Breckenridge about having the van crushed. Westcott admitted texting Richard Murtaugh immediately before she was interviewed by police in 2013. Wescott said she asked Murtaugh if James Steen was connected to the Heidi Allen case. Wescott told police that Murtaugh did not recognize her number and she did not text him back.