Brian Shaffer: Revisited /// 290 /// 291

27 comments

  • Nikki

    Nikki Jax, FL

    Thank you for covering this again. This story is one of the first that intrigued me into true crime. So sad!

    Thank you for covering this again. This story is one of the first that intrigued me into true crime. So sad!

  • Lindsay

    Lindsay FL

    I thought after listening to the episode. You said he told his friends he was going to talk to the band. The band has tons of equipment it needs to bring in but also bring out. Maybe there was a fight how does curd possibly in the bathroom towards the end of the night when maybe no one was in there. And they were able to bring him out in one of the equipment containers. I wonder if they thought about that.

    I thought after listening to the episode. You said he told his friends he was going to talk to the band. The band has tons of equipment it needs to bring in but also bring out. Maybe there was a fight how does curd possibly in the bathroom towards the end of the night when maybe no one was in there. And they were able to bring him out in one of the equipment containers. I wonder if they thought about that.

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    The band equipment containers has been a consideration - mostly from posts that I've seen. It's an interesting consideration. The band did speak with police which may mean nothing or they likely had no involvement or knowledge of what happened to Brian. - Nic

    The band equipment containers has been a consideration - mostly from posts that I've seen. It's an interesting consideration. The band did speak with police which may mean nothing or they likely had no involvement or knowledge of what happened to Brian.
    - Nic

  • RACHEL

    RACHEL OH

    great episode! I think he is alive. Because I want to believe he is alive. Also, on an unrelated note, if you haven't already read it, read Defending Jacob. It's fictional crime written by a former Assistant DA from MA, William Landay. It's so good.

    great episode! I think he is alive. Because I want to believe he is alive. Also, on an unrelated note, if you haven't already read it, read Defending Jacob. It's fictional crime written by a former Assistant DA from MA, William Landay. It's so good.

  • Eric

    Eric Antioch, IL

    Sure sounds like the social network soundtrack...

    Sure sounds like the social network soundtrack...

  • Steven

    Steven TX

    Terrific episode, guys! The addition of Lance and Tim provided some new perspectives and led to a very interesting discussion. I'd enjoy hearing more of these "revisits" in the future with them if schedules and circumstances allow. This was a nice change of pace for what is already one of my favorite podcasts. Keep up the great work!

    Terrific episode, guys! The addition of Lance and Tim provided some new perspectives and led to a very interesting discussion. I'd enjoy hearing more of these "revisits" in the future with them if schedules and circumstances allow. This was a nice change of pace for what is already one of my favorite podcasts. Keep up the great work!

  • mick

    mick dublin

    good job Captain, best show in a while, thanks Guys

    good job Captain, best show in a while, thanks Guys

  • Diarmuid

    Diarmuid France

    A brilliant ,brilliant episode . I have never been so glued to a show in my life, Thanks to you all

    A brilliant ,brilliant episode . I have never been so glued to a show in my life, Thanks to you all

  • Sam

    Sam NYC

    Derek and his wife answered questions via email on the ComeBack podcast (episode 3). He said that a Brian talked about marrying his girlfriend (Alexis) to their mom. Just thought you guys should know. Loved the episode!

    Derek and his wife answered questions via email on the ComeBack podcast (episode 3). He said that a Brian talked about marrying his girlfriend (Alexis) to their mom. Just thought you guys should know. Loved the episode!

  • Pepper

    Pepper Cincy

    I think they need to look at the people at the bar that were in his program at school. Don't underestimate the power of a crush. It would have been their last chance with him. The girlfriend was out of town and he would be proposing the next week. I would see who is work/school wife was.

    I think they need to look at the people at the bar that were in his program at school. Don't underestimate the power of a crush. It would have been their last chance with him. The girlfriend was out of town and he would be proposing the next week. I would see who is work/school wife was.

  • Mike

    Mike Houston Texas

    Hello great show!! Are we sure we are looking at unedited surveillance footage? Someone on the show said what kind of person can randomly kill someone and make the. Disappear with out a trace? A cop can. Who can edit surveillance footage a cop can.

    Hello great show!! Are we sure we are looking at unedited surveillance footage? Someone on the show said what kind of person can randomly kill someone and make the. Disappear with out a trace? A cop can. Who can edit surveillance footage a cop can.

  • Elise

    Elise Oklahoma

    I was intrigued with the Freight Train theory. If someone is found across state or country lines, they usually do not double check surrounding area missing person databases. Technically he should still have his wallet on him but... Were there any Canadian reports of an unidentified body found while unloading cargo from a train? Were there any vagrants seen near the train tracks during the weeks prior to his disappearance? The Ohio Driver's License. I live in OKlahoma and I remember when our licenses changed from just laminated paper with a state seal- to actual ID cards with a scanner code on the back. My first state ID was in 2002 and it was the dinky kind; 2004 i received the fancy one with a scanner code; and OK is a very slow state. When did Ohio's ID or DL's receive scanner codes and has his ID ever been used/scanned again?

    I was intrigued with the Freight Train theory. If someone is found across state or country lines, they usually do not double check surrounding area missing person databases. Technically he should still have his wallet on him but... Were there any Canadian reports of an unidentified body found while unloading cargo from a train? Were there any vagrants seen near the train tracks during the weeks prior to his disappearance? The Ohio Driver's License. I live in OKlahoma and I remember when our licenses changed from just laminated paper with a state seal- to actual ID cards with a scanner code on the back. My first state ID was in 2002 and it was the dinky kind; 2004 i received the fancy one with a scanner code; and OK is a very slow state. When did Ohio's ID or DL's receive scanner codes and has his ID ever been used/scanned again?

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    I love these comments and theories. Thanks to all who have posted! We are glad you all liked the conversation with Tim and Lance and it was fun and interesting hanging out and discussing a case that has so many possibilities. Cheers mates! Nic

    I love these comments and theories. Thanks to all who have posted! We are glad you all liked the conversation with Tim and Lance and it was fun and interesting hanging out and discussing a case that has so many possibilities.
    Cheers mates!
    Nic

  • Michelle

    Michelle NY

    Great episode and so glad to hear you revisiting the case, especially with Tim and Lance. I am working on the assumption that he left the bar with this comment. As an investigator/lawyer, there was a substantial amount of death investigations I worked on that we called "one-punch homicides." Usually, the situation was people drinking in a bar; people leave the bar; a physical altercation occurs in the vicinity of the bar; and the suspect punches the victim, causing him to fall to the ground, which causes a traumatic brain injury as soon as the vic hits the cement, sidewalk etc. On the episode, you guys discussed that no one heard a gunshot, or that there wasn't any blood trail found in the vicinity of the search. A one-punch situation would not leave any blood at the scene (the bleeding is internal). Also, the unintended consequence of the punch (the vic is dead) is likely to put the perpetrator (and his friends, if they are there) in a position they had not bargained for, and the decision to get rid of the body quickly could lead to them putting the vic in the river, into a dumpster, etc. Given that Brian was intoxicated and he was separated from his friends, I think this could be a likely scenario.

    Great episode and so glad to hear you revisiting the case, especially with Tim and Lance. I am working on the assumption that he left the bar with this comment. As an investigator/lawyer, there was a substantial amount of death investigations I worked on that we called "one-punch homicides." Usually, the situation was people drinking in a bar; people leave the bar; a physical altercation occurs in the vicinity of the bar; and the suspect punches the victim, causing him to fall to the ground, which causes a traumatic brain injury as soon as the vic hits the cement, sidewalk etc. On the episode, you guys discussed that no one heard a gunshot, or that there wasn't any blood trail found in the vicinity of the search. A one-punch situation would not leave any blood at the scene (the bleeding is internal). Also, the unintended consequence of the punch (the vic is dead) is likely to put the perpetrator (and his friends, if they are there) in a position they had not bargained for, and the decision to get rid of the body quickly could lead to them putting the vic in the river, into a dumpster, etc. Given that Brian was intoxicated and he was separated from his friends, I think this could be a likely scenario.

  • RJ

    RJ Vancouver

    Great episodes guys. I think he was despondent, grieving the loss of his mom, under pressure to propose on the upcoming trip and maybe even gay. He was contemplating starting a new life, looking for ways out. Then on the night in question he is drinking heavily and becomes even more depressed. He somehow got out of the club without being noticed and took his life.

    Great episodes guys. I think he was despondent, grieving the loss of his mom, under pressure to propose on the upcoming trip and maybe even gay. He was contemplating starting a new life, looking for ways out. Then on the night in question he is drinking heavily and becomes even more depressed. He somehow got out of the club without being noticed and took his life.

  • Anna

    Anna Helsinki

    Hi guys, thanks for the great show – I've listened to most of your episodes! After hearing this remarkable and sad disappearance one thing really stands out: It's not just 1 disappearance mystery really, it's 2. Not only was he able to leave or remain completely outside the camera views but he also vanished outside without any sightings. IMO this requires a LOT of odds... Or some planning. I deeply think that suicide shoud not be ruled out so easily (just by the characteristics of B). In my hometown Turku a 25 year old guy recently left a bar after a fun boozy night, walked to his flat... then walked past it for no good reason (keys or such) and continued towards the river. His body was found after extensive seraches. This guy just got a promotion and had an amazing girlfriend etc. People and close ones theorised with pretty much anything but suicide, but that really was the only sensible explanation – he even turned off his phone after the bar. Suicide can be a really shameful thing for many and one can think it over and over without anyone guessing it – then when the right mood and occassion strikes one can just go and do it. Not to mention the role of booze or temporary mental instability with this. The shame (and loved ones) factor could make him do anything possible to not leave a record on camera or anyone. Him doing everything alone is the 'cleanest' theory: no blood, no violence, no witnesses. Let's hope one day there's an answer to the people who miss him.

    Hi guys, thanks for the great show – I've listened to most of your episodes!
    After hearing this remarkable and sad disappearance one thing really stands out: It's not just 1 disappearance mystery really, it's 2.
    Not only was he able to leave or remain completely outside the camera views but he also vanished outside without any sightings. IMO this requires a LOT of odds... Or some planning.

    I deeply think that suicide shoud not be ruled out so easily (just by the characteristics of B). In my hometown Turku a 25 year old guy recently left a bar after a fun boozy night, walked to his flat... then walked past it for no good reason (keys or such) and continued towards the river. His body was found after extensive seraches. This guy just got a promotion and had an amazing girlfriend etc. People and close ones theorised with pretty much anything but suicide, but that really was the only sensible explanation – he even turned off his phone after the bar.
    Suicide can be a really shameful thing for many and one can think it over and over without anyone guessing it – then when the right mood and occassion strikes one can just go and do it. Not to mention the role of booze or temporary mental instability with this.
    The shame (and loved ones) factor could make him do anything possible to not leave a record on camera or anyone. Him doing everything alone is the 'cleanest' theory: no blood, no violence, no witnesses.
    Let's hope one day there's an answer to the people who miss him.

  • Amy

    Amy NJ

    I don’t think he left the bar or building Alive. I think he was taken out later in a box bag whatever. Sorry to say. Maybe on the roof and then carried out or dropped down

    I don’t think he left the bar or building Alive. I think he was taken out later in a box bag whatever. Sorry to say. Maybe on the roof and then carried out or dropped down

  • Amy

    Amy Nj

    Same exact situation as smiley. Well if there is any water. Look at the other cases. Young men bars then gone

    Same exact situation as smiley. Well if there is any water. Look at the other cases. Young men bars then gone

  • Heather

    Heather Portland, TN

    Is there a handicap entrance? I keep hearing about stairs and escalators. Just a thought. Keep up the great work, y’all are awesome!!

    Is there a handicap entrance? I keep hearing about stairs and escalators. Just a thought. Keep up the great work, y’all are awesome!!

  • Cherie

    Cherie SLC, UT

    Have they taken cadaver dogs through the building and parking areas?

    Have they taken cadaver dogs through the building and parking areas?

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    Handicap entrance - brilliant thought! There would have to be right? There was or at least I believe at one point there was a service elevator??? Sorry for not knowing for sure -I’m going off of memory as I have not been there since 2016 and the Tuna closed in May of 2018. I might have to venture down there again and take another look around. Cheers Nic - oh and yes search dogs did go through there however this would have been days maybe as much as a week before the dogs went through there.

    Handicap entrance - brilliant thought! There would have to be right? There was or at least I believe at one point there was a service elevator??? Sorry for not knowing for sure -I’m going off of memory as I have not been there since 2016 and the Tuna closed in May of 2018. I might have to venture down there again and take another look around.
    Cheers Nic - oh and yes search dogs did go through there however this would have been days maybe as much as a week before the dogs went through there.

  • Pam

    Pam Parts Unknown

    maybe the reason Clint did not want to take a polygraph test is because he helped Brian run away?

    maybe the reason Clint did not want to take a polygraph test is because he helped Brian run away?

  • Jasen

    Jasen Hants uk

    Maybe he jumped of balcony onto roof below?

    Maybe he jumped of balcony onto roof below?

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    The balcony is on the second floor. The first (ground) level is high but the second floor is not very high. Cheers Nic

    The balcony is on the second floor. The first (ground) level is high but the second floor is not very high.
    Cheers Nic

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    I really doubt that Brian jumped a train. The days of the hobo jumping into empty boxcars are pretty much over. Columbus tracks are not rated for passenger traffic, only cargo. Most of the cars are top loading, the ones that are side loading are generally latched shut. I was stopped by three moderately long trains in this area yesterday... and all of the cars were top loading. There was not one open, empty, box style car. In order to jump the train, you would have to grab the tiny metal service ladder as the train is rattling past at 20 miles per hour. Brian Schaeffer does not seem to have been noted for such agility and athleticism., and he was drunk. He probably would have also been caught because he would have been visible... the trains tend to run from depot to depot, and I suspect that he would not have gotten further than the next depot. Too risky-- chances for success are slim. I also doubt that the trains would have been running at that time. I am not sure when they start running again, but they do not run all night due to the noise. If I wanted to disappear from Columbus without anyone noticing, I would simply walk. No one would notice because people tend to wear blinders anyway. He would have cleared the city by the time anyone was looking for him. Besides, if I have nowhere to go, it does not matter how quickly I get there. If he crosses the train tracks, he also crosses the greenway. Brian would have an advantage in that if he walks for a couple of days, he would probably need a bit of shave. The longer he walks, the more unrecognizable he becomes... or as someone suggested, his buddy Clint may have helped him by giving him a lift. IMO too much time is spent on the camera footage. If an orange sweatshirt is enough to throw the cops off, how much more so would be a blue or grey one? This detail tells me that the footage is useless beyond just ascertaining that he was at the bar and had some interactions. If it was getting colder in the bar, it is likely that lots of people put on sweatshirts and jackets including Brian. Besides, all he needs to do to block himself from the security footage is to walk next to a larger person. He probably would not even intend to do it. I think that any random person in that footage stands a chance of not being seen exiting the bar, I do think though that you underestimate the danger of that area. The same summer that Brian disappeared, a person was gunned down in the parking garage. I live in Linden, and even I do not stand in Pearl Alley waiting for the number 8 bus at night. It is probably getting better now due to strong efforts from the city and university, but believe it or not, the campus area is the highest crime zone in the city. Robberies happen frequently. I would like to think that Brian walked away, but knowing what I do about the area, I really do not think that happened.... - from an emailer... Good stuff! Nic

    I really doubt that Brian jumped a train. The days of the hobo jumping into empty boxcars are pretty much over. Columbus tracks are not rated for passenger traffic, only cargo. Most of the cars are top loading, the ones that are side loading are generally latched shut. I was stopped by three moderately long trains in this area yesterday... and all of the cars were top loading. There was not one open, empty, box style car. In order to jump the train, you would have to grab the tiny metal service ladder as the train is rattling past at 20 miles per hour. Brian Schaeffer does not seem to have been noted for such agility and athleticism., and he was drunk. He probably would have also been caught because he would have been visible... the trains tend to run from depot to depot, and I suspect that he would not have gotten further than the next depot. Too risky-- chances for success are slim. I also doubt that the trains would have been running at that time. I am not sure when they start running again, but they do not run all night due to the noise.

    If I wanted to disappear from Columbus without anyone noticing, I would simply walk. No one would notice because people tend to wear blinders anyway. He would have cleared the city by the time anyone was looking for him. Besides, if I have nowhere to go, it does not matter how quickly I get there. If he crosses the train tracks, he also crosses the greenway. Brian would have an advantage in that if he walks for a couple of days, he would probably need a bit of shave. The longer he walks, the more unrecognizable he becomes... or as someone suggested, his buddy Clint may have helped him by giving him a lift.

    IMO too much time is spent on the camera footage. If an orange sweatshirt is enough to throw the cops off, how much more so would be a blue or grey one? This detail tells me that the footage is useless beyond just ascertaining that he was at the bar and had some interactions. If it was getting colder in the bar, it is likely that lots of people put on sweatshirts and jackets including Brian. Besides, all he needs to do to block himself from the security footage is to walk next to a larger person. He probably would not even intend to do it. I think that any random person in that footage stands a chance of not being seen exiting the bar,

    I do think though that you underestimate the danger of that area. The same summer that Brian disappeared, a person was gunned down in the parking garage. I live in Linden, and even I do not stand in Pearl Alley waiting for the number 8 bus at night. It is probably getting better now due to strong efforts from the city and university, but believe it or not, the campus area is the highest crime zone in the city. Robberies happen frequently. I would like to think that Brian walked away, but knowing what I do about the area, I really do not think that happened....
    - from an emailer...
    Good stuff! Nic

  • Theo

    Theo US

    Love the show. Some quick thoughts... 1. Either Tim or Lance inquired about location of his apartment in relation to the bar. He would not have had to cross the river to get to his apartment at 208 King Street. 2. A previous comment mentioned the high incidence of blunt head injury as a means of violent assault. As someone who has worked in a number of trauma and neuro/surgical ICUs, I can attest to this being an under-considered means of intentional homicide that often leaves little or no physical evidence. If he did leave the bar alone/undetected that night, and if he did walk home through a rough neighborhood, and if he happened to be the victim of a violent assault on the way home, and there was no audible or physical evidence of a struggle, then being bludgeoned from behind and/or robbed is a very real possibility. A single blow to the head (with or without a ground-level fall) is enough to cause intracranial hemorrhage, irreversible loss of consciousness and death in a matter of minutes to hours. The question in that case would then turn to disappearance of his body. But as we know all too well, absence of a body by no means indicates absence of a crime. The countless number of people missing-presumed-murdered in the US is a grim testament to that. 3. Were either of the two girls he was talking to at the end of the night questioned? Regardless of intention or relationship, it seems like their insight would be really valuable considering they were the very last people to see him and speak to him. 4. Least likely consideration - fall into an elevator shaft? Keep doing what you do!

    Love the show. Some quick thoughts...

    1. Either Tim or Lance inquired about location of his apartment in relation to the bar. He would not have had to cross the river to get to his apartment at 208 King Street.

    2. A previous comment mentioned the high incidence of blunt head injury as a means of violent assault. As someone who has worked in a number of trauma and neuro/surgical ICUs, I can attest to this being an under-considered means of intentional homicide that often leaves little or no physical evidence. If he did leave the bar alone/undetected that night, and if he did walk home through a rough neighborhood, and if he happened to be the victim of a violent assault on the way home, and there was no audible or physical evidence of a struggle, then being bludgeoned from behind and/or robbed is a very real possibility. A single blow to the head (with or without a ground-level fall) is enough to cause intracranial hemorrhage, irreversible loss of consciousness and death in a matter of minutes to hours. The question in that case would then turn to disappearance of his body. But as we know all too well, absence of a body by no means indicates absence of a crime. The countless number of people missing-presumed-murdered in the US is a grim testament to that.

    3. Were either of the two girls he was talking to at the end of the night questioned? Regardless of intention or relationship, it seems like their insight would be really valuable considering they were the very last people to see him and speak to him.

    4. Least likely consideration - fall into an elevator shaft?

    Keep doing what you do!

  • mG

    mG tX

    There is no question he is dead. How is this even open to debate? People watch too many movies and read too much bad fiction. He slipped out of the club and was not detected on video, not hard to do. He was very drunk and making bad decisions. He was also most likely dealing with serious demons over the death of his mother. Maybe foul play, maybe suicide. No body found lends itself to foul play. But this deciding to disappear is just too dumb to consider. You can walk away from your life without having to make it a mystery and you most likely would bring something with you.

    There is no question he is dead. How is this even open to debate? People watch too many movies and read too much bad fiction. He slipped out of the club and was not detected on video, not hard to do. He was very drunk and making bad decisions. He was also most likely dealing with serious demons over the death of his mother. Maybe foul play, maybe suicide. No body found lends itself to foul play. But this deciding to disappear is just too dumb to consider. You can walk away from your life without having to make it a mystery and you most likely would bring something with you.

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