What’s the Latest With the Missing Intern? Part 6

A chronology of the Chandra Levy story, updated as news breaks. Click  here to read the whole story from the beginning.

Friday, July 6: Investigators have all but ruled out the possibility that Chandra Levy killed herself, Washington, D.C., Police Chief Charles Ramsey said Thursday. “As time goes on, the possibility of suicide becomes more and more remote, because you would find the remains. … You can’t kill yourself and bury yourself,” Ramsey said. “The good news is we haven’t found anything that indicates she’s met with foul play. The bad news is that we haven’t found anything at all, period.”

That leaves two remaining theories for Chandra Levy’s disappearance: She was abducted or murdered, or she is hiding.

There have been several new developments in the search for Chandra Levy:

1. Aunt details alleged affair. Linda Zamsky, Chandra Levy’s aunt, told the Washington Post in a 90-minute interview that her niece first told her about her affair with Rep. Gary Condit, D-Calif., over Thanksgiving. Zamsky, who is married to Levy’s uncle, lives on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

Zamsky said Levy told her that Condit gave her gifts such as a gold bracelet and Godiva chocolates and paid for two plane tickets to California. Zamsky said Levy dreamed of marrying Condit and bearing his children. Zamsky implied that Condit said Levy could date other men, but Levy didn’t want to. According to Zamsky, Levy said Condit elaborately orchestrated their meetings, and she would often spend weekends at his apartment.

On April 29, two days before she disappeared, Levy left this voice mail for Zamsky: “Hi, Linda. This is Chandra. My internship is over. I’m planning on packing my bags in the next week or 10 days. Heading home for a while. Don’t know what I’m going to do this summer. And I really have some big news or something important to tell. Call me. …” Zamsky said Levy didn’t seem upset when she left the message. The New York Daily News reports that investigators believe Chandra’s excitement over the “big news” is a “major clue.”

2. Condit’s wife was interviewed. Investigators questioned Carolyn Condit for several hours in northern Virginia. It is unclear why they questioned her there instead of on the West Coast, where she resides in Ceres, Calif. The New York Post reported that police wanted to ask Mrs. Condit about Rep. Condit’s whereabouts on May 1, the day Chandra Levy disappeared.

3. Are there other women? The Washington Times reported Wednesday that “a law enforcement source” said detectives have interviewed six women, including flight attendant Anne Marie Smith, who say they had romantic relationships with Condit. The Times quoted the source as saying the women are “all types and ages.”

But a (presumably different) “law enforcement source knowledgeable about the case” disputed the Washington Times account, telling CNN Thursday that “five is way too high.” The same source said Condit is not the only friend of Chandra Levy’s under police scrutiny.

4. Did Condit obstruct justice? The New York Post reports that FBI agents still say Condit isn’t a suspect in the Chandra Levy case (after all, there’s still no evidence of a crime), but the FBI is investigating whether Condit obstructed the search for Levy. The federal obstruction probe was launched after Smith’s interview with Fox News, during which she said Condit’s attorneys asked her to sign an affidavit denying an affair with the congressman. Smith also said Condit told her she didn’t have to talk to the FBI.

Condit released this statement Tuesday: “I have repeatedly urged anyone who has any information that could help police find Chandra Levy to come forward, tell all they know, and be as forthcoming as possible. I have not asked anyone to refrain from discussing this matter with authorities, nor have I suggested anyone mislead the authorities.”

Condit’s San Francisco attorney, Joe Cotchett, acknowledged that an affidavit was sent and that Smith refused to sign it, but he noted that the affidavit advised Smith’s attorney, Jim Robinson, to “please edit, cut, suggest, etc.” And the New York Daily News reports that Cotchett “implied that Condit had no input in the contents and would therefore not be liable for charges of suborning perjury.” But Robinson says Condit called Smith to ask her to sign the affidavit after she refused.

5. More political ramifications. The New York Post reports that Democrats in Condit’s district say that Levy’s parents have threatened to appear in TV ads in 2002 if Condit decides to run for re-election.

CNN reported that Condit told House Democratic Leader Dick Gephardt, D-Mo., last week at a private meeting that he doesn’t intend to resign because of the controversy, and Gephardt didn’t ask him to resign. And the Modesto Bee reports that national Republican strategists have approached California state Sen. Dick Monteith of Modesto about running for Condit’s seat. Monteith said he would run only if Condit doesn’t.