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The family of a Concord, New Hampshire couple who investigators say were shot and killed last week near a walking trail is asking the public to heed the call for information from authorities as they continue their probe.
Relatives, in a statement released on Sunday night, described Stephen Reid, 67, and Djeswende “Wendy” Reid, 66, as soulmates who shared a love of adventure and fitness. The pair moved to Concord, Stephen’s hometown, three years ago, according to the statement shared by WMUR.
“Steve’s thirty-plus year career as an international development specialist in service to the world’s most vulnerable through USAID humanitarian projects could not have been made possible without the love, care and support of Wendy, who also helped recently-resettled refugees acclimate and thrive in the United States,” the family said.
The Reids were found dead on Thursday, three days after they left their home for a walk near the Broken Ground Trails.
“Family and friends did not see or hear from them after that,” Senior Assistant Attorney General Geoffrey Ward told reporters on Friday, after autopsies revealed the Reids were murdered.
Here’s what we know about the case so far:
According to Ward, the Reids left their home in the Alton Woods apartment complex on Loudon Road around 2:22 p.m. on Monday, April 18.
Their jaunt outside led them to the area near the trails, just over a mile away from their home, Ward said.
The couple were reported missing on Wednesday when Stephen did not turn up “for a planned event,” Ward said.
Concord police, with assistance from New Hampshire State Police and the Central New Hampshire Special Operations Unit, began search efforts that ended when authorities found the Reids’ bodies on Thursday evening, officials said.
Ward declined to comment on what led investigators to the trails off of Portsmouth Street. The attorney general’s office said in a statement that the bodies were recovered from “a wooded area in close proximity to the Marsh Loop Trail.”
Autopsies conducted by Deputy Chief Medical Examiner Mitchell Weinberg determined both Stephen and Djeswende died due to multiple gunshot wounds. The manner of each death was homicide, authorities said.
Ward, on Friday, asked anyone with information about the murders to contact Concord police. He also advised anyone with security video surveillance or game and wildlife cameras in the area to review footage from last week to see if the Reids could be seen on video recordings.
“What we’re interested in is … if people specifically encountered them, or have any information about anyone they saw or anything they observed in that area of the Broken Ground Trails on Monday afternoon,” Ward said. “That’s the timeframe we’re looking at.”
Concord Police Chief Bradley Osgood, during a press conference on Friday, described the case as a “tragedy.”
“It’s something that came out of nowhere and we’re doing our due diligence, investing all of our resources, working with our state and local partners to bring this case to a successful resolution,” Osgood said.
The Reids moved to Stephen’s hometown of Concord three years ago to “enjoy a well-deserved retirement,” according to a statement signed by “Lindsay and Brian Reid, and the Reid/Forey Families.”
Here is the full statement released Sunday and published by WMUR:
The children and extended family of Steve and Djeswende (Wendy) Reid wish to express our sincere gratitude to the members of the Concord Police Department, the NH State Police, the Merrimack County Sheriff’s Office, the Office of the Attorney General, and NH Fish and Game for their extraordinary efforts over the last week in the investigation of the deaths of our loved ones.
Steve served four years in the Peace Corps in West Africa right after college. He met his future wife and soulmate, Wendy, who was from West Africa, while she was studying in Washington D.C. on an athletic scholarship. They bonded over their mutual love of adventure and fitness.
Steve and Wendy had returned three years ago to his hometown of Concord to enjoy a well-deserved retirement. Steve’s thirty-plus year career as an international development specialist in service to the world’s most vulnerable through USAID humanitarian projects could not have been made possible without the love, care, and support of Wendy, who also helped recently-resettled refugees acclimate and thrive in the United States.
As requested by the police, we ask for your support by providing any information that would be helpful to the ongoing investigation.
In its statement, the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office encouraged residents in the area “to be vigilant and take normal precautions as they go about their daily lives.”
Suspicious behavior and activity should be reported to Concord police, officials said.
Asked if the attack on the Reids was random, Ward said he could not speculate about that.
“We have no specific information that would lead us to believe that the public in general is at any risk,” Ward told reporters. “That being said, be vigilant. Take your normal daily precautions. The Concord police will continue to be vigilant with patrols in those areas and in areas where there’s public outdoor recreation spaces.”
Ward said he was also unable to comment on the Reids’ personal history “or any of that in order to preserve the integrity of the investigation.”
“Obviously it’s a tragic set of circumstances and our thoughts and sympathies are with the Reid family,” Ward said.
Concord police can be reached att 603 225-8600 and tips can be submitted anonymously by calling the Concord Regional Crimeline at 603 226-3100, officials said. Tips may also be sent online through the Crimeline website or by text by testing TIP234 and the message to CRIMES (274637).
Authorities said Crimeline “awards cash to anyone whose information directly leads to information concerning the Reids murders.
“All tips remain anonymous,” officials said.
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