Hunt for murder suspects continues | VailDaily.com
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Hunt for murder suspects continues

Matt Zalaznick

Not all of these people are believed to be suspects, but police say some of them may have seen something suspicious that day that will lead investigators to the killer or killers who left 57-year-old Melba Jean Ginther shot to death behind a pickup truck 150 yards down a dirt road from U.S. Highway 24.

Motorists who drove Highway 24 that day told police they saw people riding four-wheelers and other off-road vehicles in the Camp Hale recreation area that afternoon, according to the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators are hoping to talk to these people to find out what they saw that afternoon.



Since May 20, the day Ginther’s body was found on the dirt road near the Pando Junction railroad crossing, police have been looking for two men traveling in a white pickup truck. Investigators gathered more details about the truck while talking to Vail Valley-to-Leadville commuters they stopped at a roadblock set up on Highway 24 a few days after the brutal slaying.

The truck, described as a large, early model White Dodge extended-cab pickup with dual exhaust and running boards, was seen in the area about 5 p.m., about two hours before Ginther’s body was found by motorists.



She had been shot in the back of the head, investigators said.

The passenger-side running board on the truck is loose, the windows are tinted and there may be a container, possibly a toolbox, in the bed of the truck, according to the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.

The truck was seen leaving the crime scene that afternoon, according to the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.



Investigators said they also believe there were two men at the crime scene, but haven’t confirmed their identities, according to the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office.

Ginther was a pastry chef for Keystone Resorts. She was born in Minturn and spent most of her life in the mountains.

Co-workers said Ginther, who worked alone on an afternoon shift, kept to herself. Ginther’s brother, who lives on the Front Range, said he hadn’t seen his sister in three years and that she didn’t have much contact with the other family members.

A Red Cliff liquor store owner reported seeing Ginther earlier on the afternoon of May 20. He said the woman came into his store to ask directions to Camp Hale.

Anyone who can confirm the identity of the men in the truck or the location of the truck is urged to call the Eagle County Sheriff’s Office at 1-800-315-5275 or 328-8530.

Anyone who has information or may have witnessed this crime may earn up to $1,000 and remain anonymous by calling Crimestoppers of Eagle County at 328-7007 or 1-800-963-TIPS or on-line at http://www.eaglesheriff.com by clicking on “extra, extra.”


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