The Curious Case of Kristin Snyder: An Outsider Delves Into the Rabbit Hole of a Woman’s Disappearance

By Leo Helmar

In the waning days of 2002, Kristin Snyder became obsessed with the teachings of Keith Raniere, the leader of a self-help organization called Nxivm. In a few short months, her life was taken over by her devotion to the group, and by early February of 2003, she had vanished into the wilderness of Alaska.

February 7th, 2003: After attending an ESP (NXIVM) self-help seminar at the Westmark Hotel in Anchorage, where she was ejected from the class for “erratic behavior”, 35-year old Kristin Snyder disappeared, never to be seen again.

Her descent into the rabbit hole universe of Nxivm reads like a fever dream version of Alice in Wonderland and its sequel, Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll. The mirror world and doublespeak of the Nxivm cult finds a perfect literary analog in Carroll’s classic tales. In Through the Looking Glass, Alice clambers through a looking glass or mirror and finds herself in a fantastical world where up is down and flowers and plants speak to her. Everything is its opposite.

On her adventure, Alice encounters the tale of the Jabberwock, a fearsome and shapeshifting creature. In later sequels, Alice battles the Jabberwock but in Through the Looking Glass, Alice discovers a book in the beginning of the story. Inside the book, she sees a poem that is written backwards. Alice realizes that if she holds the poem up to a mirror, the words are legible.

“‘Why, it’s a Looking-glass book, of course! And if I hold it up to a glass, the words will all go the right way again.’” Alice says.

The poem, “The Jabberwocky,” is notable for its use of nonsense words that are evocative but elusive in terms of their exact meaning.

“And, as in uffish thought he stood,

      The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,

Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,

      And burbled as it came!”

In this analogy, Kristin is Alice and Keith is the evil metamorph, the Jabberwock. The real Keith Raniere is just an average man with an overly manicured beard. Nonetheless, he seems to possess a mystical quality of persuasion in the vein of a dastardly sorcerer in a folk tale that casts a spell that locks the princess in her castle.

The aim of this article is to lend my perspective as a 5th generation Alaskan and as a paralegal who has spent the last decade in law offices working on thousands of criminal cases. I have only recently entered the Nxivm rabbit hole and so I am hoping that my fresh eyes and local connection might help to illuminate some aspects of the disappearance of Kristin Snyder that have been overlooked in the past. Snyder went missing in February of 2003 in Anchorage, Alaska.

After Kristin Snyder disappeared, a missing person case was filed and a massive search was conducted. Her car was found in Seward, two and a half hours driving distance from Anchorage. Inside the car, police found what appeared to be a suicide note. No body was ever found.

There are many things that stuck out to me while I was reading everything I could find about the disappearance of Kristin Snyder. The first and perhaps most central aspect of the case that bothers me is the timeline of events.

Snyder’s death is connected to Nxivm because she went missing after leaving an “intensive” course that Nxivm was hosting. The case has never been definitively resolved because Snyder’s body has not been found and there have been no credible sightings of Snyder in the intervening years.

There were reports that Snyder had been mentally destabilized during the Nxivm intensive, known as the Executive Success Program, and as a result, she had multiple outbursts while participating. The Frank Report broke the story in 2017 stating that during one of her outbursts, Snyder claimed that Keith Raniere had impregnated her. This crucial fact was not revealed to police in 2003 during their investigation into Snyder’s disappearance. Snyder’s death was ruled a suicide by a jury in 2004 and a presumptive death certificate was issued that memorialized their findings.

I noticed that the missing person report says that Snyder “was last seen February 7, 2003 leaving [the] Executive Success Program in Anchorage, Alaska.” This date of February 7th is contradicted by the police report which includes an interview from Nina Cowell, a witness who was also at the Executive Success Program intensive with Kristin. Cowell, on page 8 of the report, is interviewed by Alaska State Trooper Jeff Evanoff. Cowell was questioned on February 7th, so the details would’ve been fresh in her mind. “Cowell saw K. Snyder last night, 02/06/03, at about 1600 hours at the Westmark Hotel in Anchorage,” the police report states.

Police found a note in Snyder’s car. The note said she had been brainwashed by NXIVM, and that there was “no need to search for [her] body”. The official story became that she was believed to have stolen an old kayak, paddled offshore, and purposely capsized the vessel, thereby committing suicide in the waters of Resurrection Bay. No traces of the kayak or her body were ever found.

According to witnesses who attended the intensive course with Snyder, she was last seen on the 6th rather than the 7th. Perhaps even more curiously, according to the report, “Cowell said a bunch of them were there in a group and she believed Snyder left to attend a performance at the Performing Arts Center (PAC).”

Cowell’s claim that Snyder was heading off to enjoy a performance after the class on February 6th is befuddling since Snyder was in a very precarious mental state.

In an interview with True Crime Conversations, Frank Parlato outlined the scene at the intensive on February 6th and discussed the multiple outbursts that Snyder had and how Snyder was ejected from class. “[…] during the day, as she was taking the class, she began to make some pronouncements that became very disturbing to the people who were conducting the classes and they announced that they were throwing her out of the class and they had one of their Nxivm members [Elaine Smiloff] pick her up and take her out of the class and she was never seen again.”

NXIVM class sign-in sheet.

Because the Frank Report has obtained and published the class sign-in sheets for the intensive in question, we know that only 20 people were in the class. Did Cowell know that Snyder was in no state to be going to a concert? The fact that the February intensive only had 20 attendees is also an interesting sidelight in its own right as a November 2002 intensive course in Anchorage had about twice as many students.

In a December 8th, 2019 article, Parlato published another round of leaked sign-in sheets from the November class and also relayed an interesting story about Nancy Salzman’s conduct in the November intensive.

From the article: “This intensive was well attended and Susan Dones tells us that during the first five days of the intensive, Nancy Salzman was the head trainer. She also tells us that Salzman went manic when one of the students questioned her teachings and mentioned her daughters.

“Salzman’s angry reaction showed her to be not in control unlike what she taught students.  Susan thinks this may be why there were fewer students at the second intensive, the one Kristin disappeared from.”

A friend of Nina Cowell’s owned a cabin near Miller’s Landing where Kristin Snyder’s truck was discovered.

Shivani, a frequent Frank Report contributor, discussed this in a March 6th, 2020 article. The fact that a fellow Nxivm student who attended the same intensive as the missing Snyder had a connection to a cabin in the near vicinity of Miller’s Landing, where Snyder’s truck was found, was also known to the police in the immediate aftermath of Snyder’s disappearance.

From page 8 of the police report: “The Miller’s [sic] provided the name of a cabin owner, Nina Cowell, who owns a cabin North of Miller’s Landing.”

The Alaska State Troopers described their contact with Cowell on February 7th, noting she terminated the conversation with Trooper Jeff Evanoff: “Cowell stated she needed to excuse herself and make some telephone calls to some friends […]”

The report also indicated that Troopers searched Cowell’s cabin at least twice: “Cowell’s cabin was checked again as well as the surrounding wooded areas and shorelines.”

[Editor’s Note on Cowell: During a lengthy recorded interview with Nina Cowell, she stated that she was not the owner of the cabin. It was owned by her boyfriend, which is something public records can confirm. She said her boyfriend was no fan of Nxivm and tried to discourage her from attending the courses…

[To date, there is no evidence that Kristin Snyder or anyone was at the cabin during the time Snyder went missing. According to Cowell, the cabin had been tightly and firmly boarded with heavy lumber for the winter to keep animals out. There was no heat or lights. There was no evidence of any boards being disturbed, which would have been required for entry into the cabin by Snyder or anyone, with or without a key. A TV news report apparently showed the cabin in connection to the missing person with someone apparently reporting they saw a light in or around the cabin. It was later revealed that the light seen was actually the high beam lights coming across Resurrection Bay from the Spring Creek Correctional Center, a maximum-security state prison, which gave the appearance of light around the cabin. This phenomenon was often observed during the winter according to Cowell, where empty cabins line the other side and none of them have light.

[With the debunking of the “Nina had a cabin and someone was spotted there” theory, it appears Nina had nothing to do with Kristin’s disappearance other than she attended the same course, happened to have a boyfriend with a summer cabin there, was known to be a friend of Snyder’s, and had a single conversation with police where she said Kristin was at a concert which was evidently an error, but not necessarily a lie on her part. Cowell told Frank Report that she heard several students planned to attend the show and that she also heard they were going to bring Kristin along to keep an eye on her. When she learned from police that Kristin had disappeared, after speaking with them briefly, she chose to consult with the class leaders, Esther Chiappone Carlson and Ed Kinun, who she thought might be able to provide more accurate information, rather than continue making statements to police. As far as is known, the police never contacted Nina again.]

Lieutenant Alan Nickel was on patrol that night and participated in the search for Kristin Snyder.

From “The Lost Women of NXIVM”.

Lieutenant Alan Nickel: There’s nothing in this that even says that she actually left in the kayak.

Frank Parlato: Is it fair to say that it’s also hypothetical that she committed suicide here?

Lieutenant Alan Nickel: Yes, cause it’s unsolved. We don’t know what happened to her.

Kristin Snyder was an avid kayaker.


While the mix-up of the dates between the missing person report and the witness testimony might be a simple clerical error, it is part of a mosaic of conflicting stories and strange inconsistencies. Also contained in the police report and directly related to the conflicting dates is a nugget from an interview with Mike Miller, the owner of Miller’s Landing in Seward, Alaska.

Miller was interviewed by Trooper Evanoff after Evanoff discovered Kristin Snyder’s black Toyota parked in front of Miller’s Landing. Miller’s statement was made on February 7th just about 25 minutes after Trooper Evanoff found Snyder’s truck and Evanoff relayed the following: “M. Miller stated he believed he observed the black truck parked in front of their residence on Thursday morning, 02/06/03. M. Miller thought he observed the truck to have moved once during the day.”

If Miller did indeed see Kristin Snyder’s truck on the 6th during the morning when Snyder was supposed to be in Anchorage at the intensive, that would be an important fact. Another confusing discrepancy involves a kayak and a paddle that were said to have been stolen from the Miller’s property near where the black Toyota was parked. Troopers discovered a suicide note and other personal items in Snyder’s truck. We will return to the kayak and the note later, but it is important to know at this point that the kayak and the paddle were never recovered.

If Kristin Snyder was murdered and the manner of her death was subsequently covered up, someone would’ve had to go to Miller’s Landing and steal the kayak before the ultimate staging of the death scene took place. Then they would’ve had to dispose of the kayak, the paddle, and Snyder’s body somewhere else before returning the truck to the area of Miller’s Landing. So it is possible that Mike Miller did see Kristin’s truck on the morning of the 6th, and it is also possible that someone else had driven it there to steal the kayak and paddle.


From: “The Lost Women of NXIVM”: The vanishing body is not the only oddity of this case. What about the kayak or its remains? Why have they never surfaced? Being a boat person himself, Parlato knows that this is strange. Frank proceeded to Miller’s Landing, the place from where a kayak was stolen that authorities believed would be tied to the fate of Kristin Snyder.

Mike and Sherrie Miller have been there since the ’50s. They know a lot about kayaks and what happens to them in just about every circumstance.

Sherrie Miller: “The kayak wouldn’t have sunk. It would have periscoped”. [That means, the kayak would have stayed just below the surface, with a tip of it visible above water.]

I called Mike Miller to confirm whether the black truck he saw that morning was the same black truck that was eventually identified as Snyder’s vehicle. It could have been another black truck not connected to Snyder. Miller confirmed that the truck he saw that morning was the same vehicle that was ultimately identified as Kristin Snyder’s black Toyota.

How the police were led to look for Snyder in Seward and how they specifically zeroed in on Resurrection Bay in the area of Miller’s Landing in a matter of hours is also a question without a definitive answer. The police report only offers the following explanation: “On 02-07-03 Anchorage Police Department reported that they had an active missing person case involving Kristen [sic] Snyder, and that there was information that she might be in Seward.”

Frank Parlato headed to the port, to speak to Norman Regis, the man who knows most about the process of recovering bodies from the Bay.

From: “The Lost Women of NXIVM”:

Norman Regis – Harbormaster, Resurrection Bay: I’ve been harbormaster since 2014, but I’ve been in this harbor since (19)94.

Frank: And you’re fairly familiar with what happens to bodies when they drown?

Norman Regis: I pulled a few bodies out of the water since I’ve been working for the city.

Frank: And how many you’d say you searched for?

Norman Regis: I believe 16.

Frank: What’s been your success rate?

Norman Regis: So, we found every one. I would say 100%.

Frank: You always found the bodies. Kristin Snyder is the only one that hasn’t been found.

Norman Regis: Correct.


In an editor’s note included in a March 6th, 2020 article on the Frank Report by Shivani, Frank Parlato confirmed that Snyder’s wife, Heidi Clifford, told police that they should look in Seward. “Clifford told the Frank Report that she did not single out Resurrection Bay exclusively but told police that there were a number of places [Snyder] liked to go including Resurrection Bay.”

Another mystery of the case involves the location of where the kayak was stolen from. In the police report, the status of the kayak was reported as follows: “On the morning of 2-08-03 the Millers of Millers [sic] Landing resort discovered a storage shed containing kayaks and gear had been broken into and an old kayak was missing. The storage shed was close to where Snyder’s vehicle was located.”

According to Mike Miller, no storage shed existed. I asked Miller about this during a telephone interview to try and resolve this strange discrepancy. “No, there was no shed, the kayak was upside down in the yard. We didn’t realize it was missing until after they found the truck and after, you know, they were looking for it. […] I think there was a paddle stuck in it but no life vest or anything else missing.”

As I previously mentioned, a suicide note was found in Snyder’s truck and Frank Parlato investigated the handwriting of the note as part of the television film “Lost Women of NXIVM” that aired on Investigation Discovery. While not conclusive, the handwriting expert Beth Chrisman who Frank consulted in the series cast doubt on the authenticity of the suicide note. The issue of whether or not Kristin Snyder actually wrote the suicide note found in her truck was further pursued in a December 9th, 2019 piece by Frank that revealed new exemplars of Snyder’s handwriting.

The supposed suicide note found in Kristin’s car is the sole piece of evidence tying the fate of Kristin Snyder to suicide. So the matter of whether it can be confirmed to have been written by her is of paramount importance.


Beth Chrisman – Handwriting Analyst: “The card is in a beautiful cursive writing. She has a very distinctive way she writes her uppercase “I”. Very unique to her. And whoever wrote the alleged suicide note, they just wrote an upper case “I” like we learned in first grade.”


The tests are inconclusive – which means that it can’t be proved at this time that the note is genuine. Furthermore, Parlato has uncovered a lot of troubling context and information about Kristin Snyder’s possible pregnancy – information that was NOT available to law enforcement at the time of her disappearance.

Shivani contributed further information regarding the suicide note on the Frank Report with a December 20th, 2019 article questioning why Snyder did not mention her pregnancy in the note. During her outbursts that eventually led to her ejection from the intensive class, Snyder repeatedly claimed that Keith Raniere had impregnated her. If Snyder believed that she was pregnant as she said multiple times in the day or so leading up to her death, Shivani points out, it would certainly weigh heavily on her if she was going to kill herself and her unborn child.

After Kristin Snyder’s outbursts, she was removed from the class by one of the class instructors, Esther Carlson Chiappone. The details of the scene in the class, as told by students who witnessed it, are described in an article by Frank from November 19th, 2019.

Esther is an interesting figure in the Nxivm saga because she left her husband in Alaska and set off with her four children to join Keith Raniere in Albany.

Esther knew that Raniere was lying, or permitting his women lieutenants to lie to students, like those participating in the November 2002 and February 2003 intensives in Anchorage, because Raniere claimed to be a celibate monk. This was a total fabrication. Esther herself was sexually involved with Raniere.

The issue of Raniere’s celibacy is a crucial detail, and it is perhaps the reason that other people in the intensive might not have believed Kristin Snyder’s repeated claims to have been impregnated by Raniere. The public at large had not been exposed to the torrent of negative press about Raniere and Nxivm that erupted in the ensuing years. It wasn’t until October of 2003 when Forbes published its landmark article “Cult of Personality” that Nxivm was branded as a cult in the mainstream press.

Elaine Smiloff was the first person to publicly reveal that Kristin Snyder claimed Keith Raniere impregnated her.

[Editor’s note: This shocking revelation was made by Smiloff to Frank Parlato in the summer of 2017, and Frank Report broke the news that in essence reopened this cold case.]

Smiloff may also have been the last person to see Snyder before she died. Smiloff is yet another player in this tale that unfurls like an Agatha Christie mystery. Like a crime novel, the riddle of Kristen Snyder’s evaporation into the mists of Alaska has an ensemble cast of suspects and red herring clues that aim suspicions in scattershot directions.

Smiloff was a Nxivm student who apparently was not attending the February 2003 intensive. But it was Smiloff who was called to pick up Kristin Snyder after she had been ejected from class. In a January 22, 2020 update to the Kristin Snyder story, Frank said that Smiloff’s admission about Kristin Snyder’s pregnancy was the most significant new piece of information unveiled in the 17 years since Snyder’s disappearance.

Smiloff was in a position to be compromised by the Nxivm group because she had recently been charged with attempted sexual abuse of a minor on August 21st, 2002. She was convicted of that offense on March 20th, 2003, just a month and a half after the disappearance of Snyder. It did seem odd to me that Smiloff would drop everything and head to the Westmark in Anchorage where the intensive was being held to drive what must have been described to her as an unstable woman home. The potential significance of Smiloff’s criminal record was discussed by Shivani in a January 4th, 2020 Frank Report article.

This piece cannot hope to be comprehensive in such a complicated tale, but it would be an egregious omission if I did not mention a couple of intriguing trails of breadcrumbs that beg to be followed.

A commenter only known as “The Rat” made a prescient statement over ten years ago that alleged that Keith Raniere was a molester of underaged women. The Rat also implicated himself and Raniere in contributing to the deaths of Kristin Snyder and Gina Hutchinson.

Hutchinson is another young woman who was sexually involved with Raniere who died in an apparent suicide which has many suspicious elements, and her case is also explored in the excellent “Thed Lost Women of NXIVM” program.

The Rat came out from his/her hiding hole on October 24th, 2010 to document his/her displeasure with Raniere and Nxivm on a blog operated by John Tighe, known as Saratoga In Decline. The Rat’s post was garbled with typos and misspellings but it clearly called out Raniere as a statutory rapist years before anyone from the general public could have been aware of Raniere’s conduct with underage women. The true identity of the Rat remains unknown.

Raniere was ultimately convicted of a litany of crimes including sex trafficking, attempted sex trafficking, and racketeering which included predicate acts of sexual exploitation of a child, and possession of child pornography. In the Rat’s ramblings, he made an allusion to the culpability the Rat and Raniere shared for the deaths of Snyder and Hutchinson:

“i see my responsibiy [sic] in the deaths of both kristen’s friend in the monistary [sic] and ester’s friend in AK. He did not kill, I did for him. I put the idea in thier [sic] heads. It was suicide, so it could not be linked to me and keith. But we still encouraged it to happen.”

Another beguiling loose end in the ongoing Frank Report investigation into the death of Kristin Snyder is a missed phone call that Frank received late one night. It was from a number Frank was given to attempt to follow up on reports that Kristin might have faked her own suicide and was still alive. Yes, there is a conspiracy theory that Kristin Snyder is still alive and in hiding.

Frank describes getting a number for Kristin from a non-Nxivm source. The number had a 606 area code which denotes it is a Kentucky number. Kristin lived in Kentucky before moving to Alaska. Frank called the number several times months earlier and had left messages indicating that he was looking for Kristin Snyder and also relaying that Keith Raniere was now in prison and could no longer be a looming threat to Snyder.

Months later, the return call came in at 3 am from the number that Frank had saved as Kristin Snyder. He was asleep and did not hear the phone ringing and the caller left no message. It was unlikely that someone would call to let Frank know he had the wrong number months after his last call to that number. Evidently, someone saved the number.

“Did someone, whoever it was, early in the morning muster up the courage to call me, knowing it was the right thing to do?,” Frank said. “And then changed their mind?”

Frank attempted to call the number back but there have been no further developments in the story of the phantasmal phone call.

The narrative that Keith Raniere developed to tell his followers about the disappearance of Snyder is also worth meditating on.

The evolving tale of Keith’s version of events is covered in the above-linked article on the phantom phone call. Keith and his supporters are said to have spent nearly a million dollars investigating whether or not Snyder was actually dead.

In a deposition for Nxivm’s lawsuit against cult deprogramming expert Rick Ross, Nancy Salzman was grilled about the Nxivm cult’s business dealings with the private investigation firm Interfor. An excerpt of Salzman’s testimony is contained in a December 8th, 2019 Frank Report article that debunks aspects of Nxivm’s theory that Snyder faked her own suicide.

Kristin Snyder and Heidi Clifford

Salzman said in the deposition that she was dubious about the details of the disappearance of Snyder including wondering why Heidi Clifford, Kristin Snyder’s spouse, held a memorial service within three weeks of Snyder’s apparent suicide.

The breakdown of Nxivm’s efforts to investigate the disappearance of Kristin Snyder is documented further in “The Lost Women of NXIVM”. The particulars of the Nxivm investigatory efforts are also fleshed out in Frank Report articles like this one by Bangkok and another by AnonyMaker. Among the interesting questions raised in these explorations of the facts is why Nxivm waited an entire year before initiating its inquiry – and why did they send both inner circle member Kristin Keeffe and the Interfor firm on the same wild goose chase.

Nxivm higher-ups tried to convince the rank-and-file membership that Snyder was still alive by producing a photo that allegedly showed Snyder with her spouse, Heidi Clifford, at the Grand Canyon after February of 2003. Clifford rebutted Nxivm’s implication that the photo proved that Kristin Snyder was still alive. The picture showed two figures at such a distance that making any sort of definitive identification was a stretch.

Clifford additionally added important context to the photo stating that it was taken on a trip that had been arranged and paid for before Snyder’s presumed death in February. Clifford confirmed that she had traveled to the Grand Canyon shortly after Snyder had gone missing but said that she was with another woman who looked vaguely similar to Kristin Snyder.

These obvious red herrings showed how much Raniere and Nxivm were willing to grasp at straws to attempt to reinforce a version of events that removed Nxivm from any sort of responsibility for foul play. The conspiracy theory that Nxivm was trying to sell included far-fetched logic. One iteration of the Nxivm-approved theory concluded that Snyder faked her own death to escape a drug gang. Snyder had no previous connections to the drug trade or drugs in general.

Another absurd conspiracy theory is covered in the above-linked AnonyMaker piece having to do with the hair-brained notion that somehow Kristin Snyder’s death was caused by her involvement in some imaginary top-secret work she had undertaken under the auspices of the National Guard.

Frank Parlato interviewed Kristin Keefe, the person in NXIVM that was tasked to investigate the disappearance of Kristin Snyder. Kristin Keefe: “I don’t think that anyone from Kristin’s family represented to the police at the time that they felt that the disappearance was a result of the training. […] I think that she did not commit suicide at that time. I think she is alive.”

The efforts by Nxivm to locate Snyder were a sharp departure from Raniere’s previous position that he had never engaged in sexual relations with Snyder. A simple denial of culpability seemed to be the cult’s original response to the Snyder matter, but over time, I suspect that this explanation was unsatisfying to Keith’s minions. Keith then did what he does best and spun a more elaborate set of tales like Rumpelstiltskin weaving straw into gold.

In a February 11th, 2020 story from the Frank Report, another piece of evidence shifts the story of Raniere’s investigation into the Snyder matter. Matt Malone, a former IT employee and investigator for Nxivm, was engaged in an effort to track down recently departed Nxivm member Kristin Keeffe. The Nxivm daisy chain of weirdness never seems to end because at one point, the reader will recall that earlier in this story, Kristin Keeffe was sent to Alaska to investigate the fate of Kristin Snyder.

Keeffe had just undertaken a harrowing escape from the clutches of the Nxivm cult with her child who was sired by Keith Raniere. Keeffe left after she fell out with other powerful women close to Raniere like Seagram’s heiress Clare Bronfman. Malone’s assignment was described to him as an effort to reconnect Raniere and his son who Keeffe had absconded with. Malone later revealed to Parlato that Clare Bronfman told him that Kristin Snyder wasn’t lying about having sex with Keith, and could have been pregnant with his child. This is discussed in Shivani’s December 6th, 2019 story.

Frank Parlato went to Austin, Texas to speak with Matt Malone, who held secrets that could help unlock Kristin Snyder’s story.

From “The Lost Women of NXIVM”:

Matt Malone – Ex-NXIVM IT Specialist:  A friend of mine had been asked to look into Kristin Snyder, to see where she was. […] The understanding was, that they think she faked her own death, that she wasn’t really dead. […] Maybe he killed her, or she faked her own death and escaped. […] You know, Kristin Snyder, he’d gotten her pregnant, you know?

Frank: Keith Raniere?

Matt Malone: We had known that Kristin Snyder was pregnant with one of his kids.

Frank: How do you know?

Matt Malone: Clare Bronfman. From Clare’s mouth – from her words.

Frank: [That] Kristin Snyder was pregnant sheds a brand new light on this thing.


So, just to keep score, Keith went from saying he was a celibate monk who would never dream of having intercourse with a student like Kristin Snyder, to indicating that he was investigating Snyder’s apparent suicide because it didn’t make sense, and then settling on version number three, which was that he was interested in tracking down Snyder, who he thought was still alive and had faked her own untimely death because he wanted his child.

Kristin Snyder was the type of woman Keith Raniere was attracted to – tall, slender and innocent. She had the additional attraction for him of being gay. Raniere had a “conversion therapy’ that included sexually mentoring attractive lesbians.

Further details and speculation about why Raniere waited a year to begin the investigation into what happened to Kristin Snyder are filled in by former Nxivm consultant Joe O’Hara who worked for the cult right around the time of the Snyder mystery. O’Hara says he was not directly involved in the matter but he provides details of a conversation that he had with Kathy Russell, a bookkeeper and member of the Nxivm inner circle who was convicted of fraud for her role in the cult’s reign of terror.

Russell called O’Hara in a panic in February of 2004 because Raniere, via his wealthy sponsor Clare Bronfman, had sent two wire transfers of $250,000 each to a pair of shadowy “special investigators” to look into the Kristin Snyder matter. Russell was worried that the Feds might flag the transfers, and she was also straining to understand why Raniere would hire two goofballs who claimed to be ex-CIA but who could not produce any legitimate credentials.

O’Hara references an early, damning article by Dennis Yusko in the Albany Times Union that had just been published on February 1st, 2004. The article had greatly increased O’Hara’s concerns about working for Raniere. O’Hara spoke about his suspicions surrounding these “special investigators” and his efforts to understand why they were making wild claims with no attribution about improbable discoveries including that Snyder’s cell phone was still in use, and that Snyder’s credit cards were still active.

The investigators told Raniere and Bronfman that they would happily turn over all of their significant information if Nxivm would pay them an additional $175,000. The punch line to the O’Hara story is that he doesn’t think that Raniere ever coughed up the additional funds and so the $500,000 was essentially lit on fire and nothing useful was obtained from the pair of super sleuths. It is also possible that the detectives were just another apparition in the wilderness of mirrors surrounding Keith Raniere and Raniere invented the investigators as a pretext to siphon away the $500,000 from Bronfman’s treasure chest.

The fact that Kristin Snyder’s body has not turned up is unusual since she was a beloved member of the local Ski Patrol and a huge searching party was assembled from several agencies. Kenny Powers – Mentor to Kristin Snyder:  “She was a stable person, this was so unbelievably out of the ordinary in terms of behavior for her. Thirty Nordic ski patrollers out there, looking – on top of the Alaska state troopers, the Anchorage Police Department…They had a Coast Guard cutter [boat], a helicopter in the air… Hundreds of people looking for Kris.”


Among the many questions that I cannot answer at this point are the following:

Why would Kristin keep a gas receipt, dated February 6th, 2003 at 6:47 pm, and then place it neatly in a pile of paperwork on the passenger seat of her truck? The papers sitting conveniently in plain view for anyone passing by her vehicle consisted of her suicide note and a page describing the Executive Success Program intensive she was participating in.

Why would someone save a fuel receipt if they were going to kill themselves hours later? Even more inexplicably, why place this receipt in a conspicuous location next to their suicide note? The inclusion of the gas receipt makes a lot more sense if it was an element of staging that reinforced that Snyder, in her manic state, was able to make the 120-mile drive from Anchorage to Seward.

Why was the memorial planned so quickly? A Frank Report article includes a copy of the email that Snyder’s partner, Heidi Clifford, sent out on February 13th, 2003 just six days after Clifford reported Snyder’s disappearance. The memorial was held on February 17th. The email is surreal to read as it very explicitly details the alleged condition and mental illness of Snyder and how Snyder felt she needed to kill herself. In my experience, at memorial services for people who have committed suicide, the topic of how and why they killed themselves is very taboo and almost always is not broached because it is so insensitive to do so.

What was the significance of Kristin Snyder’s trip to Albany, New York only weeks before her death? It is a testament to the depth of the rabbit hole of Kristin Snyder’s death that her January 2003 visit to Albany was reported first in the Frank Report.

Susan Dones and Kristin Keeffe both saw Snyder in Albany and Snyder’s credit card statement also confirms that Snyder made purchases in the Albany area during the timeframe she is said to have done an intensive class there.

The fact that Snyder was in Albany and possibly spent time with Keith Raniere lends itself to a timeline that indicates she could have had sex with him, and then noticed that she missed her period in the ensuing month. This could explain why she was so certain she was pregnant and why she might have had a destabilizing reaction.

Whistleblower Susan Dones was once a NXIVM teacher and got to know Kristin Snyder when she visited Albany, New York, for her first course.

From “The Lost Women of NXIVM”: 

Frank: Did she ever meet Keith Raniere?

Susan Dones – Former NXIVM Trainer: Yes, absolutely. My suspicion is that he might even have had sex with her. […] The other thing is like – Keith didn’t like women being lesbians. Being gay, period, was an act of defiance. So, could he possibly try to ‘turn’ her? You know, it’s kind of like a notch on his belt.


Kristin Snyder shortly before she disappeared.

The outbursts that were witnessed in the February 2003 intensives back in Anchorage become a lot more understandable if one realizes that these courses were marathons, sometimes extending to 12 or more hours a day for 16 days in a row. Snyder had mentioned to her partner, Heidi Clifford, that she was becoming sleep-deprived. Snyder was also being gaslighted by her instructors and classmates, who told her that she was imagining things. She must have felt like she was falling down an endless tunnel into the abyss.

At the beginning of this piece, I compared the dizzying narrative of Kristin Snyder’s encounter with Nxivm to the fanciful fairy tale of Alice in Wonderland. Perhaps this characterization is not true to life in that Keith Raniere is much more sinister than an imaginary shapeshifting Jabberwock.

Keith Raniere is real, believe it or not, and whatever happened to Kristin Snyder is not a fairy tale because it is so grim and irredeemably terrible. The link between Alice and Kristin is illusory after all, and it says more about what is rumbling around in my head than it does about the disappearance of a young and promising woman like Kristin Snyder.

Besides the multiple search parties on land and the Coast Guard boat, a helicopter was also involved in the search. So Parlato felt it necessary to see for himself the real visibility conditions of the search’s local.

From “The Lost Women of NXIVM”: 

Helicopter Pilot: I could be at 2000ft. and I can see one kayak.

Frank: There’s no question that, if the kayak or even the paddle was visible, if it was around here, it could be seen.

Frank: This is why I really needed to get up there. If there was a body, visible, they would have seen it.


There is, though, a much more definite relationship between this sordid story and the fantasy world of Lewis Carroll. The etymology of the term “rabbit hole”, after all, comes down through the ages to our contemporary lexicon from the original Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The history of how the term “rabbit hole” has been used and has morphed over the years is chronicled in an excellent New Yorker article which is fittingly titled “The Rabbit-Hole Rabbit Hole”.

I fell down the Nxivm rabbit hole and crawled through the warrens and up and out of the underground with an important story. Kristin Snyder deserves to be remembered for the vivacious and happy person she was during her 35 years of life. The Nxivm chapter only encompassed a small fraction of her essence during the last few months of her time on earth. As I read Through the Looking Glass to prepare for writing this piece, I was dumbstruck by the poem that opens the story. The first stanza seems like it could’ve been written about Kristin Snyder.

“Child of the pure unclouded brow

And dreaming eyes of wonder!

Though time be fleet, and I and thou

Are half a life asunder,

Thy loving smile will surely hail

The love-gift of a fairy-tale.”


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  • I just watched The Lost Women of NXIVM. I believe that Kristin faked her death. Many of my reasons for beilieving that have already been written about.

    1. In the note, I would think that if NXIVM was behind it, there wouldn’t be a suicide note stating that they were brainwashing her and had made her dead inside. Or using “a/k/a” to clarify the program by both names and specify both locations. To me, that would be a weird choice for a suicide note, in general. And seeing as how everything listed in the note about “Nexium” is about brainwashing, etc. I can’t imagine the company would want any of that bad publicity.

    2. The handwriting does NOT match, IMO. The fact that Heidi said she doesn’t have many handwriting samples…from her wife!!? If anything, there should be at least some ESP notebooks in there (why would you throw away your notes from an expensive course?), grocery lists, and many many more cards. If Heidi thought that someone had killed Kristin and forged a letter, I would imagine she would be bringing out all of the handwriting samples to prove foul play. But if she knows or suspects Kristin faked her own death, then proving the handwriting isn’t hers would tip NXIVM off that she was still alive and possibly re-target her. Plus, the “a’s” in the letter keep flipping styles. The majority of them are opposite the way that Kristin’s sample showed she consistently wrote hers. Plus, one sample shows an unusual way to dot the “i’s” several times that is not replicated even once in the suicide note. Kristin’s handwriting sample has a mature and elegant look to it, whereas the suicide note feels to me like it was written by a young woman with worse and more bubbly handwriting. I don’t think Kristin or NXIVM wrote the note. I think it was a person or group that helped her fake her death and flee.

    Regarding the hair test–
    I would have loved to see a follow up with the woman who donated her hair for testing. To find out if Keith regularly handled their food. If buying rat poison was a regular thing. And whether the other women’s bodies could be exhumed to test their hair as well. What about Keith’s hair? If the women were supposed to keep theirs, is Keith’s hair somewhere to show that he somehow DIDN’T have the same level of poisons in his blood as his housemates? Did she save any of her hair after Keith stopped living with her? This is the most terrifying thing I’ve seen about Keith Raniere. The idea that he knowingly poisoned the women living with him and watched them get sick and die….if that’s true, there are no words.

  • LEO, You mention that Mr. Miller said there was no kayak shack, and that the missing kayak was just lying on the ground outside, but then one day he noticed it was gone.

    You say you are from Anchorage– If I’m not mistaken, Seward gets a lot of precipitation, and in any particular winter month, that would mean it might get a lot of snow– a way bigger dump, and deeper, than necessary to cover up a kayak– they aren’t very tall/ or thick.

    So it’s unlikely Kristin could assume there would be a kayak available to her, just lying around on the ground at Millers’ Landing. Strange that Kristin would drive all the way the Seward in early February to go kill herself in a kayak, without lining up a kayak — when it would be very likely that kayaks stored on the ground might be buried in snow and thus unavailable. It’s at least as likely the Seward was a plant, to throw people off track from whatever really happened to her… to get people to look in Seward… and, low and behold, find her truck with a note and a “missing” kayak

    And then, her pickup and kayak just happened to be next to a cabin of a NXIVM employee, who then got $50,000 bonus from Nancy/ Keith shortly thereafter?. You live there, do you think these coincidences are as unlikely as they sound?

    I have no idea what happened to Kristin, but the kayak story doesn’t seem likely. And the Anchorgeites at the intensive have not come forward to help

  • It is certainly not at all clear what happened. The handwriting differences are stark on the note and who holds a memorial so quickly after a death. In fact in the UK you can only be presumed death after SEVEN years of not being seen. As said in the article families always want to cover up suicide and why someone did it and obituaries and reports and funerals tend to say neutral things about the person dying with no details so it is weird that it was different here – a kind of he protesteth too much thing.

    Now KR is jailed may be if she is in hiding she could just tell someone totally neutral so the family know or if someone knows where her remains are at least someone could tell the family without identifying themselves.

    KR did all kinds of bad things to people’s brains never mind sleep depriviation – including those showing of shocking images to people experiments and might well have sought to persuade some people to kill themselves although pregnant women (if she were) tend to kill themselves and their child.

    Next steps should be trying to get a statement from everyone on that class list. Some might still have their notes from the day or remember what happened on the long long 12 hour days particularly as she was thrown out of the class which is probably quite rare so is memorable.

    • Jane – women, particularly those with a religious conviction that abortion is murder, might choose suicide as the more bearable of two evils, punishing the mother, herself sacrificing eye-for-an-eye, for the death of the child. If you accept the premise then this is the best possible outcome.

      There may have been some lesbian-seperatist disgust also, at her congress with a cis male. When a lesbian colleague of mine gave birth to a baby boy she was asked to leave her housing co-op, as future visits by the boys father would not be welcomed – she was proper cast out by these on code sisters. It happens.

    • Jane, I agree that everyone at the Feb 2003 ntensive, as well as from the previous one Kristin attended, should be interviewed. They should have been interviewed 18 years ago, but now would be better late than never.

      The whole “Seward story” — (i.e. that Kristin suddenly felt compelled to drive 3 hours on a dark winter night after leaving the intensive, and conveniently found a kayak available in the snow that she apparently knew (guessed?) ahead of time would be there, and was able to sink herself, etc) — that she’d even alerted her wife to the idea, but it all worked perfectly and the suicide was accomplished, unimpeded. is such a stretch (why not jump off one of the balconies at the Westmark Hotel that are visible in the pics), and so self serving (for whomever it was that wanted people to think she killed herself ) — that it doesnt seem believable at all — except people did seem to believe it at the time, and did so without talking to people with contemporaneous evidence, observations, of Kristin etc.

      You would think someone would WANT to come forward and offer their observations to Frank or police or someone, to clear this up, even if the police didnt talk to witnesses and witnesses successfully avoided interrogation at time.
      But then this was a strange room of people / witnesses, who didn’t even try to help Kristin when she was obviously in bad shape.
      Seems like the people at the intensive were there dissociated from her– helping her and, or helping the authorities solve the mystery. of what happened to her
      BUT, once she was “gone” and the mystery was “solved” with kayak story, these “friends” attended her memorial. Very weird.
      “What is everyone hiding?” is my reaction, 18 years later.

      In 2018 an Alaska journalist Craig Medred wrote an article about NXIVM and Snyder, where he reported he interviewed some of Kristin’s “friends”, but that they didn’t want to talk publicly– He wrote–
      “Anchorage friends who asked not to be identified for this article said the NXIVM training broke Snyder and never put her together again. They are convinced she committed suicide and dismiss the idea she was murdered or faked her death to help hide from a drug gang, a NXIVM-spawned theory……Friends believe she suffered a breakdown. NXIVM and Raniere might have played a role.”
      Has anyone talked to Medred about his article and asked who was interviewed ? Who were these “friends” who talked to him?
      And he said about Kristin’s note– that NXIVM later offered a different opinion as to the note. “In truth of fact, that note was not found in the vehicle,” its court complaint against Ross charged. “According to the official police report, a different note was left behind in the vehicle, and said note made no mention of NXIVM or Executive Success Programs. A woman who worked as a lawyer for NXIVM on the Ross litigation (according to a FR report) was present at the intensive. Did she give this information to the police?

  • With everything that happened around Nina, I doubt Heidi C was involved. The way Nina was set up to look guilty (in case of a need for plan B), and the way they paid to bring Nina to Albany, show Keith’s grubby paw prints all over the situation. I do believe Heidi C’s and Keith’s involvement are mutually exclusive.

  • To “the rat” – This is Kristin Marie Snyder’s ONLY sister- and all I want is her remains and what her last hours were like. and why YOU did for Keith what you did. All I have ever wanted is to bring my sister home and bury her properly. Is there a way that you can give us that- YOU may remain anonymous- we just want the tip of where to look, and we also want to know if Kris’ partner, Heidi, was involved in this cover-up. As I said- “YOU” may remain “anonymous”- call or leave me the info. on my phone- or call and email Frank.
    All we want to do is bring my sister home, and lay her to rest in her proper spot. We need closure, as my father is already deceased, and my mother is getting older. I need this for my mom and my family. Please?

    We know that the “statute of limitations” is up on “homicide”- we just want the truth and why whatever happened to her took place. Was it because she was pregnant? How far along was she? When did the rape take place and where?

    Was Kris drugged in class? If so, why? Did Heidi know? Was Heidi a part of this issue? If so, why? What part, if any, did she play?

    Again, all we want are Kris’ remains and how we can find them. Please? Help us.


  • To anonymous- you sound like you know more than you are saying. Did you or do you know Heidi personally? I do- what do you know about her and the relationship between her and Kris? Was Heidi a jealous person? Was she ever angry toward Kris? Were there problems? Do you know?

    Do you know anything about the “rat” and what the rat has said about planting “suicide” into Gina and Kris’ heads? Were you there?

    Can you tell us more than we already know? Do you know where Kris’ remains are? Has anyone talked to you? Were you in any of the classes?

    All we want is the truth and her remains.

  • This article seems to point a big finger at Kristin’s partner, Heidi Clifford. How could she have held a memorial only 6 days after Kristin disappeared? Giving up so soon? She claimed that she wasn’t upset that Kristin thought she was pregnant by Raniere – huh? Clifford wouldn’t have known what a high-level narcissist Raniere was in his ability to manipulate young women. Clifford may have been overcome by jealousy and lashed out in rage at Kristin. You can’t tell me that Clifford would have been so blase about her partner cheating on her with a man. Then Clifford takes a trip that she and Kristin had pre-booked to the Grand Canyon a few weeks after Kristin “disappeared” with another woman? I think Heidi Clifford needs to be questioned further.

  • This is Kim Snyder- and I am very real. Don’t think I’m NOT. I am alive and well, and that name you have is weird and odd and makes it sound like you are scared of me. Goody-!!!!!!!
    Kris was MY ONLY sister- and I won’t stop fighting for her- she is my ONLY sister

  • Thanks for the article and chasing down details. I’d be interested in hearing your Anchorage perspective also. I think everyone at the intensives should be extensively interviewed by serious investigator– many people were together with Snyder for hours/days before her departure, and have no information to offer??

    Really weird, and they did nothing to help her or stop her?? Weird The lists of attendees of her two Anchorage intensives includes people who apparently still live and work in Anchorage, and who worked for Raniere (e.g., Wende Irick (1st intensive) (introduced Snyder to Ex Success and presumably got a commission for it) and C Guiterrez (1st and 2d intensives) -(worked as an attorney on the Ross litigation on behalf of NXIVM).

    Irick was reportedly great friends with Kristin Keeffe (this connection laid out in earlier FR stories), but she wasn’t ever interviewed– Why not?? The list goes on and on…

    • Wendy Irick…that reminds me of something I read about her and another female hiding a .357 pistol in the couch of her vehicle. I’ve always wondered why this particular person wrote that and if so, why?

    • “I think everyone at the intensives should be extensively interviewed by serious investigator”

      If we want to make progress, this is what needs to occur. There are many silent people who could help give us answers to the list of inconsistencies in the case.

  • Take it or leave it, Kristin’s spirit can be perceived. Consciousness does not die, no matter how we ignore even Einstein’s theoretical formulae. What a magnificent guy, though! He was far from the first to notice about energy, “mass” and consciousness. He just put it a different way. He westernized it. Haha. Lalalalala. SCIENCE. Consciousness upon bodily “death” does not cease. Only the form of that consciousness is transposed and to our human senses, dematerialized.

    So many people walking to the gas chambers were heard pondering, lamenting, “will anyone ever know what happened? Will there be anyone left to tell? Who will remember my mother and father, my sister, brothers. Will anyone remember me?”

    This article shows. Someone remembers. Many remember, really. Kristin will not be forgotten, cast aside. The patterns surrounding her MURDER are highly visible. This is how come some of us are keeping our arms around her and always will. See through the deception, the lies and the ignorant fearsomeness which ran this entire cult. There is a pattern to be seen as well as to be understood.

    Frankly, the murderers and the usurers of the flesh, blood, minds and hearts of others are not really that different from one another. Some are aware of what possesses them and some are not aware. Then there are variant degrees of both awareness and of unawareness, residing within one individual, as well as within any group “consciousness,” to be considered and analyzed, with a certain perspective of detachment. You have to detach emotionally from the (conspicuous) harmers of others whilst seeking to understand motives, behaviors. Otherwise such a study can become too agonizing, painful. You are encountering a combo of disorganized minds and a kind of heartlessness. One cannot allow much room for subjectivity to superimpose itself upon such analysis or thinking goes off course. Maybe you have to stop and melt into a puddle of tears for the ones who have been so hurt, damaged or curtailed, no more breath, no more family, no more living here with us. Then you can be ready again.

    I have seen these patterns of behavior before and think that most people have pretty good common sense, and we see many indications of who someone is, but sometimes we ignore or overlook our own instincts and even our inner voice of intuition. Little red flags.

    Nancy Salzman might still be able to run, but she cannot hide. Raniere and Clare Bronfman are down for the count now. As the Rolling Stones said, “I am waiting. I am waiting. Oh yeah, oh yeah…Waiting for someone to come out of somewhere….You can’t hold out, You can’t hold out. Oh yeah, oh yeah.” (Thank you, gentlemen.) Salzman might or might not know this, but she’s already naked. Surprise! Boo. A bugga bugga bugga boo. U bugga me, imma gonna bugga u.

    Ready to boo-ga-loo, Madam? Here comes Woody Woodpecker. And me. ‘Cause I surely am. Ready.

    Enough pretending to be part of some solution. You chose to be complicit and to suck off the armpit of madness. Fly high, pimpmama. And you ain’t nothin’ new. Just another fumbleass, a pretender. Very, very foul ball, old gal. I am waiting but won’t bother to hold up any inhaling or exhaling. Nancy can work it out. Esther can work it out. Ed can work it out and so can Nina. Bring some gigantic barfbags to wherever these cowards begin with their inevitable spewing and their confessionals. Talk to the hand, Nancy. History has a big, long-lasting middle finger, oblivious to it that you may be. That finger has more mercy than you have given to anyone. Try to relax. If the fake laugh has dried up, hold down your head and cry. It does help, raining helps.

    Thanks for this piece, a home run, and it has livened the spirit. We have not forgotten, will not forget. Love is love.

    • Shivani, your work was extremely helpful in putting together the piece and I appreciate your analysis and perspective. You, Kim and Frank deserve huge kudos for keeping this story in the hearts and minds of readers and for unearthing new information.

      Thanks for your praise and I’m interested in continuing the investigation. My goal with the article was to aggregate information and to send a signal that the Lost Women of Nxivm will never be forgotten.

      Happy New Year and let’s keep digging. Hopefully, 2021 will be the year that we break through the veil.

  • This investigation is being “covered” still by NOT further questioning anyone- because the “monster” is still getting the lime light.
    Focus can’t be kept on Kris- it constantly reverts back to the “monster”.
    If time were really taken- this thing could get solved.
    Kris’ life is important- but the monster is getting the lime light and being treated as a HERO- when he is NOT.
    Kris’ case will have to be investigated by the PD offices- and people who will keep their focus on what is really going on.
    Kris is too important for the “ball to fall at the way side”. She has been kicked to the curb enough- I, as her sister, am NOW taking over- and cleaning house- I need people that care.
    I hate the “monster”- wish people would get away from him and what ever else he does.
    Kris is our family member- and it will stay that way.
    We love ❤️ you Kris-!!!!!!!

  • Thank you for this very illuminating perspective. You do highlight and reveal some interesting facts here, Leo.

    Mr. Malone’s and Miller’s accounts as to the locations of Kris’ truck and the allegedly missing Kayak and paddle is troubling together with Clifford’s information that Kris was not partial to Miller’s landing. I wonder how Kris would have known where to find the Kayak in the Miller’s yard so close to Cowell’s boyfriend’s cabin where the truck was parked, if there were ever a woodshed break-in and when…again, lots of new facts for thought and, were there an interest in truth or justice for the Lost Women, further investigation.

    There are many, many eerie similarities between Kris and, my sister Gina’s, stories. Gina also may have been pregnant and, as the evidence shows, in her case aborted a baby in the months prior to her death.

    It is shocking that the fact of Kris being in Albany and, possibly, pregnant with Keith’s “Avatar” baby, as Keith said, had not ever been disclosed prior to Frank’s 2017 report.

    (Not, btw, Clifford’s doing. She just didn’t believe Kris at the time — bought in that it was some psychotic nonsense, apparently – just as she might have assumed Kris was dead by her own hand and therefore sold the truck to meet NXIVM’s callous if not suspicious demand for payment on the courses.

    But I’ve had it up to the gills with Red Herrings and Rabbit Holes. As Leo notes, that IS one of NXIVM’s specialties and don’t I know!

    Since you mention Frank’s phantom caller, I believe that incident itself was a Red Herring and the same f’in bird was tryin to drive me batshit at the same time with prank calls being the least of it.

    I don’t fault Frank for taking the detours and, yep, I did too without much choice but…of course I’d be curious about an aged Gina look-alike showing up in the strangest spots far from one another, in an apparent attempt to have me believe she, too, yet dwelt among the living as Frank was, likewise, led to believe his caller was not a similar red herring illusion but a person with a guilty conscience, maybe Kris herself alive and well and living in Tallahassee—

    Welcome to the rabbit world, Leo. 🐰

    • Thank you so much, Heidi. The details surrounding Gina’s case are perplexing, to say the least, and I think The Lost Women of Nxivm did a great service in contextualizing the circumstances of the women who died who were connected to Raniere. Keith is the common denominator.

      I appreciate you taking the time to read the article and my hope is that now that Nxivm has been mortally wounded, the work of unraveling the cases of Gina and Kristin can go forward unimpeded by the characteristic scorched earth litigation of the cult.

      • Thank YOU, Leo. We share the same hopes and dreams for our lost loved ones. May I invite you to look over the evidence in Gina’s case further?

        There are some very striking similarities in Gina and Kris’ journals that point to the possibility Kris attended a Buddhist event and was exploring the same teachings that Gina was with Keith Raniere and Kristin Keefe, who was also very curious about Buddhism and Hinduism from the days Keith had his minions visiting local ashram’s and monasteries. I believe and there’s evidence that Kristin Keeffe & Gina attended a Buddhist seminar in NYC in August 2002, weeks before she passed. Gina’s NXIVM “Exploration of Meaning” chart that adorned the cover of her “dream” journal was done in August 2002 as well. I believe some of her writings were done in a quasi-hypnotic, twilight state as it appears some of Kris’ (Snyder’s) journal entries and NX coursework may have been per Johnnie and Kim Snyder’s evidence.

        It’s no secret, again, that NXIVM performed “abuse regression” hypnotherapy on Gina and others who were deliberately put into a dissociative state where they became more suggestible. Kris’ suicide note says that she was “brainwashed” — regardless of who wrote it, I’m sure there were brainwashing attempts as the note indicates.

        Kristin Keeffe also admitted on camera (in a not yet aired TV program) that she observed Keith discussing and perusing suicide methods with Gina. Indeed, suicide images were found on the computer Gina used while working at CBI that Keith bequeathed to her.

        Elaine S. claimed that Kris was saying “I don’t know if I can go through with it,” while (purportedly) driving her home from the NXIVM class she was booted out of. They had to hide the guns from her.

        There’s a lot more that weighs on the side of assisted, hypnotically induced suicide. The Buddhist/Hindu philosophy centers on reincarnated leaders, Avatar babies, etc. NXIVM incorporated these teachings as justification for suicide and statuary rape in it’s “Good or Bad” course.

        This does not negate Frank’s theory or anyone’s theories otherwise, it’s simply a theory I believe worth pursuing based on the evidence I’ve seen.

        Even in Sally Brink’s case, it’s obvious NXIANS believe death is a nobler choice than seeking to prevent it.

        • Heidi,

          I meant to circle back and reply earlier but I got waylaid. I am definitely going to be spending time looking into Gina’s case for a potential future project. I’d love it if we could stay in touch and I’m trying to think of what the best way to get you my email address would be. I’ll just put it here and hopefully that will be OK with Frank. Otherwise I’ll make a point of finding another way to initiate a correspondence if you’re interested.

          Drop me a line when you get a chance at leopaulhelmar (at)

          Thank you much for your reply and your comments.


  • There wasn’t a massive search. If you actually sit down and total the hours of searching for her it’s a very low number.

    • Some of the people involved were very invested in preventing a search for Kristin. Gee. How come?

      Kristin was used to death, in my opinion, and these Nxivm harpies contributed PLENTY to what has happened to her. She was spoken of, with emphasis, as having been disruptive, unstable and troublesome. To their self-help group. Oh my God to this hideous “self-help.”

      Some of these lying banshees hissing about Raniere’s celibate “status” and shutting Kristin down were Raniere’s own sexual partners, as well as being his procuresses, who were instructed to seek out more sexual material for Raniere to ingest, to use and to spit out like a bloody-mouthed hyena, except that often, Raniere was impelled to keep coming back for more.

        • Re-read some of the old comments written by Kim and Wonder Woman. The same email address was used by both, and the person using the name Wonder Woman admitted to being a friend of Kim’s.
          So, draw your own conclusions here. But if both writers are entering the same email address, it seems they must be the same person.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” In addition, he was credited in the Starz docuseries 'Seduced' for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premieres on May 22, 2022.

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Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083