Missing woman's father frustrated by 14-year-old case
By NOLAN STOUT
May. 12, 2018
HARRISONBURG, Va. (AP) — Rachel Good's father just wants to bring her home.
It's been 14 years and nearly seven months since Good vanished.
On Wednesday, a Rockingham County Circuit Court judge opened the door for the suspect in the case, former Elkton police officer Adam Williams, to be held liable for the 2003 disappearance of the 20-year-old pregnant mother of three from Elkton.
But Cary Good isn't interested in civil or criminal resolutions to the disappearance.
"All I want to know is where she's at," the 68-year-old said on May 3. "That's all I want so I can bring her home.
"I'm tired. It's been 15 years and my health ain't that good, and I want to know what happened to my daughter before I die."
Williams is subject to a wrongful death lawsuit that seeks $50,000 in damages and claims he is responsible for Good's death. The lawsuit was filed about six months after Good's estate dropped its first wrongful death suit due to a battle with the Virginia State Police over evidence.
Although Good's body has never been found, she was declared legally dead in 2010.
"If you find out Adam Williams done it and you electrocute him, it ain't going to bring my daughter back," Cary Good said. "I just want the truth."
Without A Trace
Good disappeared the night of Oct. 18, 2003, when she was last seen hanging out with friends in the parking lot of the Elkton Volunteer Fire Department.
Her parents reported her missing the next day, and the then 22-year-old Williams handled the first four days of the investigation as Elkton Police Department's lead investigator. During that time, family members said, he entered Good's apartment and collected evidence.
Good's parents soon found letters between Williams and Good that suggested a romantic relationship. At the time, then-Police Chief Richard Pullen said he had "no official knowledge" of a relationship between the two, which Cary Good has disputed.
VSP took over the case 10 days after she disappeared.
Family members have said that Williams tried to get Good to terminate her pregnancy, and she threatened to tell his wife.
Williams entered a letter of resignation to the Elkton department in November 2003, effective January 2004, shortly after state police searched his home and seven months before he was named a suspect in the disappearance. He was placed on administrative leave for the rest of his term in December 2003.
After resigning, he moved out of state.
Search For Answers
Williams, who now lives in Louisiana, has never been criminally charged in the case, but a special grand jury has convened off and on since 2004 to review evidence. He has appeared for at least one of those hearings.
"If it had not been for me hiring a lawyer and pushing this thing, we'd be back to the start," Cary Good said.
Judge T.J. Wilson ruled early this month that Williams didn't meet the state-mandated deadline to respond to the wrongful death lawsuit, opening the door for a default judgment, which means the court rules in favor of the plaintiff.
The judgment amounts to a legal admission of liability, and Williams would forfeit the right to argue the case in court, said Brad Pollack, Cary Good's attorney.
Unless he faces criminal charges, any role Williams may have played in the disappearance will never be argued in open court. A Virginia State Police spokeswoman didn't return calls for comment on the status of the case on May 3, but Commonwealth's Attorney Marsha Garst said the case is still "an active investigation."
She said VSP is the lead agency and that the special grand jury is still active, but would not comment further on the case.
Good is frustrated that it hasn't moved forward.
"(Garst's) office has given up. That's the way I feel," he said. "They're doing nothing. They've took my daughter's life and what happened to her and put it up on the shelf."
If Williams was involved, Cary Good said he can forgive him.
"I'm not mad at Williams; not a bit. They were kids. They screwed up," he said. "If he's got down on his knees and said, 'Lord, I've messed up; please forgive me,' I'm obligated to forgive him."
The next step in the lawsuit is a hearing on the amount of damages that would be awarded. Per Virginia law, any money would likely go to Rachel Good's children.
Cary Good said he doesn't expect the family will receive anything and isn't interested in the money.
"I don't want nothing. I don't want a penny," he said. "I want my grandkids to know what happened to their mother. ... That's all I want."
Information from: Daily News-Record, http://www.dnronline.com