Remembering Dana Lea Bailey

Dana Bailey - courtesy of her sister, Tracy Bailey

Dana Bailey – courtesy of her sister, Tracy Bailey

Update: Dana’s sister Tracy told me that the young woman who appears in many newspaper photographs is actually not Dana but Dana’s roommate. Tracy kindly gave me a photograph of her beautiful sister.

We hope that by publishing this photograph and this post the discussions in Dana’s case will pick up again.

On March 5, 1987, Dana Lea Bailey was found murdered in her apartment. She had died of multiple stab wounds. Her mother discovered her daughter’s naked body. Dana was tied up and blindfolded.

Dana was stabbed multiple times in her left breast area. Police believes that she was stabbed in her bed and was then moved to the floor, placed in a posed position on top of bedding and sheets on the floor. She was visible from the bedroom window.

The murder weapon, a steak knife, was found in the bathroom.  It belonged in the apartment and was not brought to the scene.

Police believe that someone had watched Dana’s comings and goings from another apartment building where remodeling gave Dana’s killer coverage. Upon checking the area, police found shoe prints that matched those found in the apartment as well as those found at the point of surveillance.

The suspect most likely used a five gallon bucket as a step stool to climb up and enter the kitchen window of Dana’s apartment after cutting the screen with a sharp object.

In December of 2003, the police received an anonymous letter with two names. How these two people are connected to either the crime scene or Dana is a mystery. These two people were investigated, found, questioned but no connection was found. There is a $30,000.00 reward for the arrest and conviction of Dana’s killer.

Ray Gricar

As mysterious and tragic as Dana’s murder is, it wasn’t the end of trouble. On April 15, 2005, the DA in her case, Mr. Ray Gricar vanished. Authorities broadcasted a description of the district attorney and his car. They even used search planes. Bellafonte police officer Darrel Zaccagni said that in the first hours, he wasn’t worried. But the next day, Gricar’s Mini Cooper was discovered in Lewisburg, across from an antiques mall called the Street of Shops, about a hundred yards from the Susquehanna River but no trace of Gricar.

Medical records showed nothing unusual. If he disappeared out of his own free will, he did so without touching his bank account or waiting a few months to collect his retirement pension, said Centre County district attorney Mike Madeira.

When police opened his car, they caught a strong whiff of smoke. However, Ray did not smoke AND didn’t allow smoking in his beloved car. Police found two cigarette butts and recovered DNA from them, but it matched nobody they had on file. They also used a bloodhound but the dog lost Gricar’s scent 20 yards from the car. The tracker suggested that Gricar got into another vehicle perhaps with his killer.

And then a miracle happens! Gricar’s laptop was discovered in the Susquehanna River on September 30, 2005, but without the hard drive. The hard drive was found a few months later but was so physically damaged that the FBI could not retrieve any information. Did Gricar walk away from his life? Did he commit suicide? Was he murdered? Is there any connection between his disappearance and one of the cases he handled?

If you have any information about Dana Bailey or the anonymous note the police received, contact PennState College Police at 814-234-7150. You can leave an anonymous tip at CrimeStoppers at 877-99-CRIME. If you have any information about the disappearance of Ray Gricar contact the Bellafonte Police at 814-353-2320.