WICKED: The Abigail Hernandez Abduction

Feb 27, 2015 - 0 Comments

Weeks into the Abigail Hernandez abduction, rumor had it she was just a runaway. But, in reality, the teen was being brutally imprisoned by a madman. In reality, she had gone to Hell.

WICKED: The Abigail Hernandez Abduction



A mysterious disappearance

In the afternoon of October 9th 2013, Abigail “Abby” Hernandez was walking to her house after school and texting back and forth with her classmates on departing buses, when the 15-year-old’s cell phone suddenly shut off.

Hours later, when her mother Zenya returned from work to find her daughter uncharacteristically missing, a desperate search was launched which would ultimately cover the entire state of New Hampshire, and across the boundaries of several neighboring states as well.

Regardless, no one would see the North Conway teen in the flesh again for nine long months, during which time two dominant theories inevitably emerged: Hernandez willingly ran away with somebody she’d met online, or the pretty schoolgirl had been abducted, murdered and dumped.

Unfortunately, neither theory proved to be right.

Missing in the “Granite State”

America’s mountainous northeastern state of New Hampshire is a sparsely populated one, and Abby Hernandez isn’t the only person to vanish in its harsh and unforgiving wilderness. She may, however, be one of the first to ever return from the ranks of its dead.

Just this February, for instance, yet another intrepid hiker gravely miscalculated the picturesque but deadly White Mountains and, despite extensive mountaineering skills and solo-climbing experience, perished in unrelenting 100-mile-per-hour arctic windblasts that froze her body to the bone and to the summit.

Still, for some, that grisly fate might seem preferable to what actually befell Hernandez.

Stun guns, zip ties, shock collars, gags

Abigail Hernandez missing/found posterOne might think a notoriously creepy 34-year-old guy with a criminal past and history of violence dating back to when he himself was a student in the same Conway school system that Hernandez attended would be a prime suspect in her suspicious disappearance.

Especially when this gun-toting antisocial ex-con also had a fortified shipping container on his property that, for some weird reason, he’d converted into a soundproofed backyard bunker.

Yet Nathaniel Kibby managed to fly right under law enforcement’s radar, at times even traveling to his under-aged captive’s hometown -- to the park, to the police station, to the courthouse, and back again, to his own makeshift little dungeon just 30 miles away.

“Crazy Nate”

Those fully acquainted with hostile “odd-ball” Nathaniel Kibby did their best to steer clear of him, they say; not the least because he “thrived on conflict” and was constantly in trouble with the law.

Kibby was a definite menace, most people had learned, but, judging by the elaborate preparations he made in advance of abducting Abby Hernandez, and the sheer brutality of her months-long confinement, it’s clear there was a much darker side to this volatile loner than anybody had previously thought.

It’s also clear by the intricacy of his criminal planning that there was a method to “Crazy Nate” Kibby’s madness. That he’d kidnapped, confined, and tortured someone else before.

Still Missing

Maura Murray was a rash young woman on the run in 2004, late in the evening of February 9th, unwittingly passing through Nathaniel Kibby territory in an ill-conceived attempt at dodging some legal problems she’d created for herself.

Those matters would be small potatoes, however, when compared to whatever happened to her that chilly night, because, no matter how fast Murray drove into the darkness or what her intended destination actually was, she certainly wasn’t going to get very far with a rag strategically inserted in her vehicle’s exhaust pipe.

She didn’t -- to date Murray’s disappearance remains unexplained and unsolved.

Soon thereafter, Brianna Maitland also ran into some unforeseen difficulties while navigating that neck of the woods and was last sighted roughly 100 miles from Kibby’s lair and abode. Now, nobody can find this attractive, dark-haired young lady either. Dead, or alive.

On the other hand, a few of the region’s missing females have been located. Their decomposing corpses, that is. At present though, the recently unearthed skull of a 20 to 30-year-old Asian woman has yet to be identified.

205 criminal counts in the Abigail Hernandez abduction

Nathaniel Kibby mugshotIf, in the end, only half of the criminal counts levied against kidnapper and child-rapist Nathaniel Kibby stick, he is nevertheless looking at a life sentence.

According to these numbered indictments, the 34-year-old had additionally coerced an already helpless young victim with explicit death threats, including threatening to kill her family and pets if she didn’t write a letter to her mother stating she was okay and "safe."

The heavily-redacted document further indicates that the defendant’s been charged with repeated sexual assault of a minor, unlawful restraint, and custodial interference, among dozens and dozens of equally repugnant acts which sprung from the Hernandez abduction.

Kibby’s day in court will arrive in January 2016 and the judge presiding over the controversial proceedings has confirmed that the trial is “on track” as scheduled. In the interim, New Hampshire’s most nefarious and unpopular perp is being held on a million-dollars bail.


Exactly how Abigail Hernandez defied the odds and quietly made it back home again on July 9, 2014, is as much a mystery today as the circumstances of her initial vanishing in October 2013. And it looks like these vital details may never be published, unless, of course, she someday wants to divulge them herself.

As a result of all the secrecy surrounding her terrible ordeal, cruel rumors once more abound that perhaps Hernandez had never really been kidnapped after all; that she probably freely went with Nathaniel Kibby, and, at the very worse, due to youth and naïveté, was easily exploited by a felonious man.

Kept deliberately in the dark, it’s probably natural for the public to be somewhat skeptical of a traumatized 16-year-old girl’s fuzzy and oft times faltering account, and to try and invent another more linear version which might fill in all the blanks and sound plausible to them.

But it’s also just as credible that a bright, much-loved, and athletic teenager simply possessed enough strength and character to endure the kind of unspeakable horrors that others in the same situation could not. And therefore, when she at last saw the opportunity to do so, she outfoxed her evil captor, and escaped from him.




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