SSAProgram 002The murder of Stacey Burns may be solved but then again, may never be solved. This observation comes from (using the journalistic cliché) “an informed source very close to the investigation.”

The point of this post is to open a discussion about the difference between a case being solved and a case being prosecuted. It has been over two years since a feature article in the Green Valley News here in Arizona indicated that the authorities believed they had the murder case of Stacey Burns solved. They knew who committed the crime. One source is quoted as saying that “what’s missing is the person doing it coming to terms with it. . . .It’ll happen. It’ll come.” To me, this sounds as if the case has been solved. I believe the dictionary describes the word solved as having found the correct answer or explanation for something, such as a mystery. Judging from the comments, it would seem that the police feel that this crime has been solved.

Apparently solving a case does not mean that the alleged perpetrator will be prosecuted. If this case is not going to be prosecuted, then logic tells us that either something must be missing. Whether that something missing is evidence, or witnesses, or a confession, we do not know. What we do know is that more than four years after the television show, 20/20, featured this story and two years after the Green Valley News featured this story, it appears we are no closer to seeing Stacey’s killer arrested and brought to trial.

I have heard so many different versions of why this case has not seen an arrest; many of them have been discussed in this blog. Yesterday’s observation from that “informed source” is discouraging if only because the phrase “might never be” was used. Obviously, there must be a reason for the case apparently being “solved” but not prosecuted but that reason is as nebulous and hard to catch as mist rising from Lake Winnipesaukee on a cool summer morning.