Sorry Ryan Hillegas, But The Best Laid Schemes…
That Ryan Hillegas’ memory is so terrible when it comes to remembering even roughly the time of day he saw Teresa is something that bothers everyone. I had initially thought Ryan’s faulty memory was his way of thumbing his nose at the defense since he knew he that Wisconsin’s third-party liability statutes would shield him from serious questioning, but a comment I’d seen recently sent me off in an entirely new direction. Is it possible that Ryan’s visit to Teresa the day before she was killed was a lot more sinister than anyone has heretofore imagined?
Ryan’s last stop over at Teresa and Scott’s house hasn’t received that much attention, all things considered, but something about it has never quite felt right, perhaps because it leaves many unanswered questions. Here are but a few: Was Scott Bloedorn home when Ryan arrived to return something he said he had borrowed? Who answered the door, or was Ryan comfortable enough to let himself in? What would Scott Bloedorn testify to? How long Ryan had kept it? Did Scott call Ryan to request that the item be returned, or did Ryan return the item without being prompted. Did Ryan go out of his way to make the trip, or was it on the way to somewhere he was already going?
Maybe borrowing things from Scott was Ryan’s way to have an excuse to drop by Teresa’s house at random hours as he could always legitimately claim that he was returning something even though the real reason for the visit, of course, would be to encounter Teresa, hopefully alone, so he could be with her, and try to convince her that they should get back together.
What might to the outside world appeared to be nothing-out-of-the-ordinary, was anything but in Ryan’s own mind. Great importance was assigned to the timing of his trip over to his ex-girlfriends house, and as it so happened, he got it right: she was there, and her roommate, Scott wasn’t which meant they could be alone. Being secretly aware of his own motives Hillegas was likely worried that Buting’s questioning could go in any direction and not even Ken Kratz himself would have been wise to where it was going to raise an objection.
Let’s imagine that Buting had asked Hillegas whether Scott Bloedorn had been at the house when he arrived to return “something”. If the answer had been no, Ryan would have naturally worried that people would put things together and realize that he’d been alone in the house with her. That would have been enough to put that visit in an entirely different light than the way it would be imagined if Scott were present.
When Buting asked Hillegas what time he had been over to Scott and Teresa’s, he effectively put him in a bind. Ryan tried to get out of it by simply saying that he didn’t remember. If Buting hadn’t followed up with words to the effect, “do you remember whether it was light or dark out”, it wouldn’t have been a memorable passage. But since he did ask the question as he did, Ryan had no choice but to give a ridiculous answer because the alternative would have been to risk revelations that might have put him in an even worse light.
It is now my strong suspicion that the time that Ryan last officially saw Teresa, the love of his life up to that point, didn’t happen because Ryan was just over there on a friendly visit to drop something off for Scott Bloedorn. He went there at the time that he did because, I suspect, he knew two conditions had been met: 1) Scott Bloedorn would not be there; and, 2) Teresa Halbach would.
Let’s for a moment imagine that I’m correct. The question should then arise by whom in the whole world has the scheme been detected? My point is not that I wish to be recognized as being clever enough to detect such a scheme but that if I’m correct we have irrefutable proof of a man both clever and devious enough to fool the world at least once.