View Full Version : Ga. Woman Found, Reportedly Got Cold Feet

04-30-2005, 09:49 AM
What a moron...the cold feet? Fine, but once it got so out of control and she lied about being abducted?? :thumbdown

I hope if she changes her mind again that the guy tells her to take a hike.

By MARY PEREA, Associated Press Writer

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A Georgia bride-to-be who vanished just days before her wedding turned up in New Mexico and fabricated a tale of abduction before admitting Saturday that she had gotten cold feet and "needed some time alone," police said.

Jennifer Wilbanks, 32, was in police custody more than 1,420 miles from her home on what was supposed to be her wedding day.

"It turns out that Miss Wilbanks basically felt the pressure of this large wedding and could not handle it," said Randy Belcher, the police chief in Duluth, Ga., the Atlanta suburb where Wilbanks lives with her fiance. He said there would be no criminal charges.

Wilbanks, whose disappearance set off a nationwide hunt, called her fiance, John Mason, from a pay phone late Friday and told him that she had been kidnapped while jogging three days before, authorities said. Her family rejoiced that she was safe, telling reporters that the media coverage apparently got to the kidnappers.

But Wilbanks soon recanted, according to police.

Ray Schultz, chief of police in Albuquerque, said Wilbanks "had become scared and concerned about her impending marriage and decided she needed some time alone." He said she traveled to Las Vegas by bus before going to Albuquerque.

"She's obviously very concerned about the stress that she's been through, the stress that's been placed on her family," he said. "She is very upset."

The mood outside Wilbanks' home went from jubilant to somber after Wilbanks changed her story. Family members ducked inside and the blinds were drawn, but friends expressed relief that Wilbanks was safe.

"Having cold feet is a joy compared to what the alternative might have been," friend Melinda Larson, who had planned to attend the wedding, told CNN.

The wedding was going to be a huge bash. The couple had mailed 600 invitations, and the ceremony was to feature 14 bridesmaids and 14 groomsmen.

Wilbanks' uncle, Mike Satterfield, thanked people who had helped in the search and supported the family.

"Jennifer had some issues the family was not aware of. We're looking forward to loving her and talking to her about these issues," he said.

Mason and Wilbanks' family planned to fly to Albuquerque later Saturday.

Wilbanks, who is a nurse, was tired and thirsty, but was not complaining of any injuries Saturday, officials said. Her hair, which was long in pictures released by her family, was shoulder-length.

Just hours before Wilbanks called her fiance, police in Duluth said they had no solid leads in the case and began dismantling a search center. Relatives offered a $100,000 reward for information and were planning a prayer vigil.

The hunt for Wilbanks had consumed Duluth, a tight-knit town. Her picture and newspaper articles about her disappearance were on telephone poles and shop windows. Police had also seized three computers from the home she shared with Mason.

Mason had become a target of suspicion and agreed to a private polygraph test, which Wilbanks' family said he passed. He had been negotiating with authorities for another test.

"That's been the hardest part for me," Mason said after Wilbanks called from Albuquerque. "It gives you a feeling like you can't walk outside your home."

Larson, a friend of both Mason and Wilbanks, said she thought the bride-to-be had no idea her disappearance would draw so much attention.

"Sometimes things take on a life of their own, just like weddings," she said.

Bob Borkowski
04-30-2005, 09:54 AM
Yeah and how about the money spent to try and locate her in and around Duluth? One estimate I heard was $1 million. Shouldn't she and the family cough up some dough to help recover some of these bucks?

04-30-2005, 09:56 AM
I hope she gets some counseling. I'm glad she is safe.

04-30-2005, 10:08 AM
I had a feeling it would turn out like this.

04-30-2005, 10:10 AM
Wouldn't surprise me ONE BIT if she gets a book deal or movie deal out of this fiasco. She knew good and well this would get the media's attention. I mean, look at her. For her to be having such a large wedding and seemingly everyone in her part of the world being close to her, she obviously wants attention. I bet she's marrying the guy for money. If it isn't that, she certainly has something to hide. I don't buy into the "cold feet" theory. Either you truely want to marry someone, or you don't. If you don't, then you have no business marrying someone. He deserves WAY better than her, for what he went through. My wife and I were taking dibs on whether "he did something to her", but now we know that she's just another phony that got exposed. I lop this right up there with those turds in the New England area that claimed they found a bunch of century-old bills, only to be exposed as liars.

04-30-2005, 10:29 AM
She will face charges, right? And what about all the money that will be lost by not having the wedding today?

Could she have handled this situation any worse?

04-30-2005, 10:46 AM
Could she have handled this situation any worse?

04-30-2005, 10:49 AM
"Jennifer had some issues the family was not aware of."

Talk about an understatement?! :help:

04-30-2005, 11:19 AM
Per the police chief no charges will be filed...I hope public outcry changes that.

Remember the girl that staged her own kidnapping? Didn't she have charges filed against her?

Obviously she has issues, but so do lots of other criminals. She put people at risk while searching for her and she cost the taxpayers a lot of money. Not to mention the suspicion tossed on her fiance. :eek:

If she was having 600 guests, 14 bridesmaids and groomsmen she or her family must have some bucks. At the very least the $100,000.00 reward money should be given to the city/state to cover some of the expenses.

04-30-2005, 11:27 AM
Even if she doesn't get charged with anything, she should get a bill from the city for the cost of the search.

04-30-2005, 12:28 PM
She will face charges, right? And what about all the money that will be lost by not having the wedding today?

Could she have handled this situation any worse?

She should get fined an or jail time.

04-30-2005, 03:09 PM
This is all the rage down here in Atlanta today.

One of the local radio stations is now nearing 8 hours of phone in calls from people about this goofyness.

04-30-2005, 03:48 PM
I had a feeling it would turn out like this.

When I heard she was found safe..and was just released, I had the same thought, she ran off...glad she is safe..but they need to bill her.

05-01-2005, 02:28 AM
Even if she doesn't get charged with anything, she should get a bill from the city for the cost of the search.

The problem with this is, if she is lucky enough to be married to that gentleman, he will be paying for this, too. What she deserves is this:

bad publicity
her fiance permanently gets the "cold feet"
pay every cent that was incurred by the taxpayers.