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Saturday, April 30, 2005

The gutless bride

run like hell

Ga. Woman Found, Reportedly Got Cold Feet

By MARY PEREA, Associated Press Writer 49 minutes ago

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.

This is a prime reason Nancy Grace needs to be kept off TV.

She basically had the woman in a ditch as the vicitim of some nefarious sex crime on last night's show. She looked like she was going to break down in tears when she talked to the woman's father.

The idea that she flipped and ran was discounted.

Obviously, this woman is a massive coward. Kidnapping? Leaving her boyfriend as the next Scott Peterson? Come on. One phone call would have cut this bullshit out. Someone could have been killed behind this. Once you get the cops involved, anything could have happened. An innocent man chased and cornered as a suspect, anything.

They have this insanely large wedding planned, and then she runs like she owes her book five grand she doesn't have. Jennifer definitely has some issues, moral courage being the first one.

If I were her fiance, I'd be preparing for a honeymoon with his new best friend, Jack Daniels. Because anyone running out on a big wedding like that either has stage fright like you wouldn't believe or doesn't want to marry you. And I'd bet on number 2.

posted by Steve @ 9:52:00 AM

9:52:00 AM

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