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December 19, 2012

Officials seek leads on missing area woman

By JOE MAHONEY
The Daily Star

---- — Jennifer Renz Ramsaran, the 36-year-old stay-at-home mom missing for a week under suspicious circumstances, had begun discussing the possibility of separating from her husband and had made new online gaming friends through her iPhone account, a family friend said Tuesday.

“It sounded like she was developing an emotional attachment to somebody,” said a source who spoke to The Daily Star on the condition of anonymity. “If there was somebody showing her an awful lot of attention, I could see her being misled.”

Meanwhile, Chenango County Sheriff Ernest Cutting Jr. confirmed that investigators have not ruled out the possibility that Ramsaran may have met foul play.

He said there has been no known activity on any bank account she had access to, and no indication she has attempted to contact anyone since she disappeared Dec. 11.

Ramsaran, from Sheff Road in New Berlin, mysteriously vanished after her husband, Ganesh Ramsaran, a project manager for IBM, said she drove to a Syracuse mall while the couple’s three young children were in school. Since then, investigators have recovered the family minivan she was reported to have been driving, as well as her cellphone. The van was found outside an apartment building on Plymouth Road in Norwich, just west of the couple’s residence.

The cellphone was located farther west on the side of Route 23 in Plymouth, Cutting said.

On Tuesday, state police forensic investigators, armed with both a warrant and permission from the husband, conducted a painstaking search of the family’s home, Cutting said. The investigators are also examining all electronic devices, including computers and cellphones, in an attempt to gather information that could explain Jennifer Ramsaran’s disappearance.

“We’re going to go step by step,” Cutting said. “We’re going to look at everything very carefully and run down leads as they come in. We’re going to keep investigating this until we get a resolution.”

Cutting said Ganesh Ramsaran has remained cooperative with investigators since the outset of the probe.

“He has not asked for an attorney, and he took a polygraph,” the sheriff said. “He has been cooperative.”

Based on the information that a source related to a Daily Star reporter, Cutting was asked whether the couple was having marital difficulties.

“Like any marriage there are problems there,” he said. “But there are no indications of violence.”

Attempts to reach Ganesh Ramsaran were unsuccessful. He did not respond to a message sent to his Facebook account, and the couple does not have a listed home telephone number.

Jason Wicks, from Mobile, Ala., said he has been a friend of Ganesh Ramsaran for 20 years.

“He’s a great guy,” he said. “He’d go out of his way to do anything for anybody. He loved Jen. He’d never do anything to harm her.”

In a detailed posting on his Facebook page, Ganesh Ramsaran said he and his wife first dated at a Halloween bonfire celebration Oct. 29, 1994, while both were students at the State University College at New Paltz. Nearly five years later, the two married at Tempe, Ariz., on the campus of Arizona State University.

Thirteen years ago Saturday, the couple’s first child, Cara, was born. Nearly three years later, the couple’s second child, Glenn, was born at the same hospital. Six years ago, the couple had a third child, Nicole, who was born in Albany.

“As the last few days have been blurred into one long nightmare I have finally let myself reflect upon the past a bit, something I normally don’t allow myself to do,” the husband, an avid running enthusiast and marathon competitor, wrote on Facebook.

“Jen would NEVER EVER leave our kids and I willingly,” the posting continued. “She has never left home and not keep in contact within 2-3 hours via phone or text. She would never miss our daughters’ Winter Concert last night or her birthday tomorrow. I hate to say this but I have given up hope that she’ll be found safe and sound. The kids and I miss her so much, her laugh, her quirkiness, just everything. Today I went to Walmart and I grabbed my cell to call home and ask her a question about which item I should purchase and reality smacked me in the face and I started crying uncontrollably! That was rough! I am strong and I know the kids and I will get through this.”

Elaborating on the ordeal, Ganesh Ramsaran went on: “All I want is for Jen to come walking through our front door safe and sound and giving us all hugs, but I have lost all faith that will be the case. The helplessness and the not knowing is an additional nightmare which I can’t escape from right now. The lack of sleep, the loss of appetite, the stress of not knowing, the worrying where and how she is doing is a burden that I never thought I would have to carry but life comes with some curve balls.”

In one of his last postings pertaining to the case, Ganesh Ramsaran recalled that two days before his wife vanished, he visited a local grocery store and filled up the gasoline tank of the minivan that she would use.

Cutting said investigators are trying to corroborate that information.

Cutting said based on the preliminary examination of the van that was recovered, there was no sign that a struggle had taken place in that vehicle.

He said there is also no indication that anyone has attempted to use credit or automatic teller machine cards that Jennifer Ramsaran may have carried with her.

“There is no evidence other than she is missing, and we’re trying to find the answers,” he said.

He added that investigators are in the process of obtaining subpoenas in order to examine her telephone records.