Kim, I’m glad to see you chiming in here.
It doesn’t seem that you’re accustomed to dealing with the sort of rough-and-tumble, and sometimes downright strange, online forum that Frank oversees here.
To get on to what’s most important, I think it’s clear that NXIVM had a hand in what happened to Kristin. At a minimum they recklessly used processes that can be dangerous to mental health in spite of knowing that from previous cases, negligently prevented her from getting necessary professional care when she needed it, and lied about and covered up their role when things went terribly wrong.
The Seward harbormaster has a limited area of responsibility, so I’ve looked instead to what is in the official report about Kristin’s disappearances and the searches that followed. The team at the search command post consulted people with “many years experience Kayaking in Resurrection Bay” and determined a search area ranging at least 25 miles from the harbor, around the capes at the outer entrance to the bay, all the way into the bays to the East and West, and out to open ocean – they apparently thought that a kayak might have gotten quite far. Alaska State Troopers worked with “Seward area fire/EMS volunteers, the U.S. Coast Guard, Forest Service law enforcement, the Seward Police Department, the Civil Air Patrol, and friends of Snyder’s, many of whom were part of an organized search and rescue team as part of the Nordic Ski Club.” When an Alaska journalist asked friends of Kristin’s in 2018, they said they found the murder “theory far-fetched. They believe it more likely Raniere and NXIVM played some role in a mental breakdown that led Snyder to suicide.”
The 2018 article mentions that Kristin’s friend Kenny Powers, the director of the Nordic Ski Patrol who teared up when interviewed by Frank, was also a former Alaska assistant attorney general – so the civilian searchers were lead by someone who was also an attorney.
[Ed. Note. Kenny Powers told me he did not go to Seward during the search but remained in Anchorage and helped coordinate remotely. Powers was at one time an assistant Alaska attorney general, of which there are many, similarly to being an Assistant US Attorney. Powers impressed me as an ethical, upright totally above board lawyer.]
A 2019 Times Union article reported that “Powers saw Snyder in the days before she disappeared. He recalled her as suicidal, a dramatically different person from the level-headed woman he knew for years before she began NXIVM courses and traveled to Albany to meet Raniere.”
He even testified before the jury for the Certificate of Presumptive Death, so he must think that the investigation covered things, and find their inability to locate a body not too troubling. So far as I can tell no one else involved in the search raised any objection that the authorities were missing something or off track, or that there was anything fundamentally wrong, either.
There’s no proof that there was a murder – by anyone.
As for the theory that Kristin was escaping drug dealer’s, that’s NXIVM’s self-serving internal conspiracy theory. I think it should be aired, just as an example to see how a bunch of people convinced themselves of something like that, which we know basically includes finding supposed evidence that’s probably not actually probative, and reading too much into things like the way the memorial service was handled.
And I mentioned Kristen’s work at the National Guard (listed as her employer on the certificate) mostly as a way of demonstrating that it’s possible to come up with all sorts of theories. Sorry if that fell flat.