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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

First Phase of Justice for Janet March?

On August 16, 1996 Janet March disappeared without a trace. Her husband, prominent attorney, Perry March told her parents and police that he and Janet had a heated discussion and she decided to leave and take a small vacation. Days later Janet's car was found in a nearby apartment complex abandoned. It appeared that Janet may not have taken the vacation her husband claimed. Finding an abandoned car was not enough for an arrest, and afterall, there was no proof that Janet was even dead.
Circumstantial evidence would surface later that Janet may not have left on her own accord and maybe Perry March was not telling everything he knew. Birthday invitations had been sent out for Janet and Perry's son for his upcoming birthday. The birthday party unbeknownst to Perry was set for one day before he claimed Janet told him she'd return from her trip. Janet would never miss her son's birthday that she'd been planning for months.

Years would pass and Perry would move to Mexico to be with his father (so he claimed). Perry March married another woman and began to move on with his life as if he somehow knew Janet would never return.
Nearly nine years later Perry March was charged with conspiracy to commit murder against his ex-inlaws, as well as murdering his wife. Next would be the tedious process of extradicting him back to the United States. Mexico sent him back to Tennessee to face his charges and he has remained there.
In a stunning turn of events, Perry March's own father, Arthur March testified (in order to avoid jail time for his role in the conspiracy charges) that his son beat Janet March on the night of August 16, 1996 with a wrench killing her. He claimed that he assisted Perry in disposing of Janet's body. Authorities believe there is some truth to his allegations and have conducted searches where he claims they buried Janet. To date, Janet March's body has never been recovered.
In a separate trial just today (April 19, 2006), a jury found Perry March GUILTY for stealing money from his in-laws, which that some believe prompted Janet's disappearance. The instance with the stolen money happened less than two weeks before Janet vanished.
His murder trial is still pending. I believe that justice is on the horizon for Janet March and I also believe that her body will be found soon. My thoughts are with her parents, and two children who have never given up on finding her and bringing Perry March to justice. All people reading this blog please keep Janet March's family in your thoughts and prayers as they move into the next tedious trial. It's been a long road for them.

From News Channel 5 Tennessee

The jury found Perry March guilty Wednesday in his first trial, in which he was accused of stealing thousands of dollars from his former in-laws.
It took the jury less than 45 minutes to reach a verdict. Sentencing will take place on June 22 at 9 a.m.

The jury foreman said March was found guilty of theft in “the value of more than $10,000 but less than $60,000.”

The jury began deliberating Wednesday afternoon in Perry March's first trial. The trial went by faster than experts expected.

Wednesday was the second day of testimony in the theft case against Perry March. His former father-in-law, Lawrence Levine, testified for the prosecution.

March was married to Levine's daughter, Janet, and March worked for Levine's law firm until Janet disappeared in 1996. Perry March was accused of stealing $23,000 from the Levine Law firm.

Lawrence Levine spent more than two hours on the stand testifying about his relationship with Perry in his law firm and as a son-in-law. He explained that he helped Perry during his time in law school. He also said that he and his wife gave Perry and Janet money more than once, and that he even helped get Arthur March’s home out of foreclosure.

“I helped both him and members of his family. There is a provision in the United States Internal Revenue code that said you can go ahead and give a gift of $10,000 per year, per beneficiary. Carolyn would give Perry $10,000 a year, and Janet $10,000 a year, and Mark (Janet's brother) $10,000 a year,” He went on to explain, “And I would give Perry $10, 000 a year, Janet $10,000 a year, and of course Mark, $10,000 a year. In addition to that we helped out Perry’s father who had his house foreclosed. We bought the house out of foreclosure,” said Lawrence Levine.

Levine said that he was aware his daughter and Mr. March were having marital problems. He said they would argue, often coming to his wife Carolyn as a mediator.

Around the same time the Janet disappeared, Lawrence Levine said Perry came to explaining he needed money to start his own law firm.

“Within a week before Janet was gone, Perry said he wanted to go ahead and start his own law practice and he wanted to come and discuss money with Carolyn and I. And I said when do you and Janet want to come? And he said no he didn’t want to come with Janet. And I said, well every major decision I’ve ever made in the 40 -- well then it was 30 years -- that I’ve been married, about money, has been made with Carolyn,” Levine said.

He went on to explain that he didn’t want to talk about money with Perry without Janet being there, but he said Perry really wanted to come over, so they agreed.

Levine said Perry presented he and his wife with a list of expenses that totaled $30,000. Levine said Perry never asked them for the money, but after showing them the expenses he said he would take the money out of his pension plan. Even though he didn't ask them for the money, Carolyn thought he wanted to borrow the money from them. Levine said they were not willing to loan him the money in this instance.

Levine also told the jury that Janet March had decided she could no longer live with Perry and asked her father for a list of divorce attorneys. He said he gave her the list and made an appointment for her, but before she could meet with the attorney, she went missing.

Levine was called to the stand, in part, to refute what Perry said, in a deposition that was taken back in 1996. Part of that deposition was played for the jury.

In the deposition, Perry said he did not recall taking money from clients that was intended for the law firm after he left the law firm back in September of 1996. Then he said Levine gave him permission to take some of the money, but on the stand, Levine said that was not the case.

Stay tuned to NewsChannel 5, NewsChannel 5+ and for more on this trial and the next two trials Perry March faces.


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