Authorities piece together a N.H. cold case in an attempt to ID victims

  • This 1973 booking photo, originally made by the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office in Phoenix and released Thursday by the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office, shows Terry Peder Rasmussen. Rasmussen, who died in prison in 2010, is suspected of killing up to eight women, including four whose remains were discovered in barrels located in Bear Brook Park in Allenstown. Maricopa County Sheriff's Office/New Hampshire Office of the Attorney General via AP

Monitor staff
Published: 11/2/2017 3:52:25 PM

We know a lot about the Bear Brook State Park murders.

We wish we knew more, though.

We know the killer’s name is Terry Peder Rasmussen, not Bob Evans or Gerry Mockerman or any of the other aliases he once used. We also know he fathered four children, he left New Hampshire with a Goffstown High School graduate, he killed a woman in California and, after his conviction for that murder, he died in prison seven years ago.

But Sgt. Mike Kokoski of the state’s Cold Case Unit still wonders about the woman and three little girls found in barrels near the park, one in 1985, the other 15 years later.

They remain unidentified more than three decades after their deaths.

In short, we’re not done with this nightmare yet. There’s more information yet to be discovered.

“The Allenstown case will be closed when those victims are identified,” Kokoski told me Thursday by phone.

The attorney general’s office released more pieces to a scattered puzzle Thursday, following the announcement in August that the killer was Rasmussen and he grew up in Arizona.

There wasn’t much new here, other than a few tidbits added to a timeline that takes several reads before fully sinking in.

And even then, it proves perplexing.

Not only are police still trying to figure out the names of the four females found near the park, but they’d also like to know what happened to Denise Beaudin, the Goffstown girl who left the state with her daughter and Rasmussen in 1981.

She hasn’t been heard from since, and police believe she was killed by Rasmussen as well. The point is, the more authorities feed the media information about this awful tale, the better the chance that someone will come forward and unlock these mysteries.

As Kokoski told me, “Admittedly, the press release today isn’t any kind of bombshell, really. It’s just kind of a revision and a small update to the timeline. We want to keep that out there and keep that current just for that reason.”

The story of Rasmussen, who’s probably killed six people that we know of, spreads across the country. He was raised in Arizona, he lived in Hawaii, he moved to California and he worked in Texas.

And then there’s his connection to New Hampshire, the epicenter of a madman’s evil behavior.

It was here that Rasmussen took the name Bob Evans and worked as an electrician. It was here that he convinced Beaudin to leave the state with him, along with her 6-month-old daughter, who was later abandoned and whose DNA linked her mother to Rasmussen/Evans.

And it was here, in about 1980, that Rasmussen killed those three little girls and that woman, none of whom have yet to be identified. The woman, estimated to be 23- to 33-years-old, and a girl whom forensics revealed was between 5 and 11, were found near Bear Brook in a 55-gallon drum.

Then, 15 years later, two girls, both around 2 years old, were found in another barrel in the same area.

In the years since, DNA showed that the woman was somehow related to two of the girls, although officials could not determine if she was their mother.

The other younger girl, science showed, was Rasmussen’s daughter, leading investigators to wonder who the mother was and whether she was alive or dead.

Looking through the maze-like timeline shows that Rasmussen and an unknown woman visited his then-wife and their four children in December of 1975 or ‘76 in Payson, Ariz. That woman may very well be the mother of the dead girl found here, and, of course, she may well be dead herself.

“We’re very interested in this unidentified woman who he was seen with in Arizona by family members,” Kokoski said. “That woman we think potentially could be critical to all of this and it could be the mother of that child here in Allenstown, or maybe not. It could be some other woman.

“But whoever it is,” Kokoski continued, “she certainly has insight into that critical period, and if she is in fact the mother of the child here in New Hampshire, obviously we want to identify her.”

In other words, police will continue searching, continue sending press releases, continue using media to spread the word and find some answers.

They want to know what happened to Beaudin, who was 23 when she disappeared.

“The Manchester Police Department case with Denise Beaudin will remain open until they find, presumably, her remains,” Kokoski said.

The Bear Brook State Park murders are wide open as well.

Not who committed the crime.

Who these four people were.

“The primary objectives here are to identify the Allenstown victims and find Denise Beaudin,” Kokoski said. “I think for all intents and purposes, once those goals are met, the case would end in terms of New Hampshire.”

TERRY PEDER RASMUSSEN

1943: Born Dec. 23 in Colorado

1954-1958: Attends Whittier Elementary School, Phoenix, Ariz.

1958-1961: Resides in Phoenix with family

1959-1960: Attends North High School in Phoenix; drops out after sophomore year

1961: Enlists in the U.S. Navy

1967: Discharged from the Navy

1967-1968: Moves to Hawaii; works in parents’ shoe shop

1968: Gets married in Hawaii

1969: Moves to Phoenix; twin daughters born; works as electrician for a boss named “Otto” (company unknown)

1970: Family moves to Redwood City, Calif.; works as electrician in Palo Alto; son is born

1972: Daughter is born; He and wife separate temporarily

1973: approximate date; Rasmussen and family move back to Phoenix; again works for “Otto”; also works in a shoe shop

1973: Arrested by Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office

1975: Arrested in Phoenix for aggravated assault; it is believed that his wife and children left him shortly after this arrest

1975 or 1976: Arrives unexpectedly to visit wife and children in Payson, Ariz. He is with unidentified female; indicates he’s living in Ingleside, Texas; Last time he’s seen by family

1978: Works for the “Brown & Root” Company in Houston; quit to work elsewhere

1978: Contacts friend in Arizona and asks for money; says he is in Texas working on an oil rig

1978: Divorce finalized; whereabouts unknown

1978-1979: approximate date; worked at Waumbec Mills in Manchester as head electrician; now known as Bob Evans

1980: Evans arrested in Manchester for issuing a bad check

1980: Evans arrested in Manchester for theft of services (electricity)

1980: Arrested in Manchester for diverting electric current

1981: Denise Beaudin of Manchester goes missing shortly after Thanksgiving with her 6 month old daughter and her boyfriend, Robert T. Evans

1984-1985: Hired under name Curtis Kimball by electrical company in Los Alamitos, Calif.

1985: Kimball arrested in Cypress, Calif., for DUI

1985: First barrel found adjacent to Bear Brook State Park in Allenstown containing an unidentified adult female (age 23 to 33) and female child (5 to 11)

1986: In Santa Cruz County, Calif., living and working at the Holiday Host RV Park in Scotts Valley under name Gordon Jenson

1986: Abandons child (Denise Beaudin’s daughter) in California and flees

1986: Fingerprints match between Gordon Jenson and Curtis Mayo Kimball, confirming they are the same person

1988: Pulled over in San Luis Obispo, Calif., under name Gerry Mockerman, driving a stolen vehicle from Preston, Idaho

1989: Rasmussen arrested in California on warrants for child abandonment and sentenced to 3 years

1990: Paroled and absconded the following day in California

1998: Stopped in California under the name Lawrence William Vanner and cited for not having insurance or a driver’s license

2000: Second barrel found adjacent to Bear Brook State Park in Allenstown, containing two unidentified female children (ages 2 to 4) and (1 to 3)

2002: Girlfriend Eunsoon Jun disappears from Richmond, Calif.

2002: Rasmussen arrested for Eunsoon Jun’s murder and parole violation

2003: Convicted of Eunsoon Jun’s murder and sentenced to prison for 15 years to life

2003: DNA testing confirmed that Rasmussen not the biological father of the child he abandoned in June 1986 (Denise Beaudin’s daughter)

2010: Rasmussen dies in prison

2016: The California San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office contacts New Hampshire authorities about Rasmussen and his connection to New Hampshire

2016: DNA confirms Rasmussen is biological father of the unidentified 2- to 4-year-old little girl found dead in Allenstown in 2000

2017: Authorities release details of subject Robert “Bob” Evans and his connection to the Allenstown homicides and disappearance of Denise Beaudin

2017: Authorities complete DNA testing confirming the man known as Robert “Bob” Evans is actually Terry Peder Rasmussen

(Ray Duckler can be reached at 369-3304 or rduckler@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @rayduckler.)




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