Mystery continues to surround Middletown native's fishing trip - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Mystery continues to surround Middletown native's fishing trip

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Nathan Carman returning to port in Boston on Tuesday. (CNN photo) Nathan Carman returning to port in Boston on Tuesday. (CNN photo)
Clark Carman said his son had nothing to do with his mother's disappearance or the death of his grandfather in 2013. (WFSB photo) Clark Carman said his son had nothing to do with his mother's disappearance or the death of his grandfather in 2013. (WFSB photo)

Investigators are trying to figure out if a Middletown native was unsafely operating his boat before it sank off the coast of New York.

A search warrant was issued at the Vermont home of 22-year-old Nathan Carman. Read the search warrant here.

Investigators believed they'd find evidence suggesting that Nathan Carman, who has autism, was "operating a boat as to endanger, resulting in death."

Eyewitness News spoke with Nathan Carman's father on Wednesday who had flown to Connecticut from California.

"My son's doing ok," said Clark Carman. "He's not at the point that he wants to speak. When he does, he's going to contact the press. At that point in time he'll have more to say. Right now he wants his alone time."

"I feel healthy, emotionally, I've been through a huge amount," Nathan Carman said to the media on Tuesday night. "From both rescuing me from the sea and for taking such good care of me with giving me food and blankets while I was on board his ship."

Nathan Carmen was on a fishing trip with is mother, Linda Carman, but their vessel took on water and went down nearly two weeks ago. He told the U.S. Coast Guard that he got into a life raft, but could not find his mother.

After talking with Nathan Carmen, the U.S. Coast Guard told Eyewitness News that they are not reopening the search for his mom. Coast Guard officials said there was only one raft on the boat.

"None of us really know what he went through," said Clark Carman. "We have to bear with that."

Nathan Carmen was eventually picked up by a Chinese freighter over the weekend and brought to a port in Boston Tuesday. He was about 100 miles off the coast of Martha's Vineyard. The Coast Guard said he had food and provisions. His mother didn't have any survival gear and was not protected from the elements, so the likelihood of finding her alive was minimal.

Court documents said that Nathan Carman knew his boat was in need of mechanical repairs and had been doing them himself. That could have made the boat unsafe.

The documents also show that Nathan Carman and his mother had different intentions about their final destinations.

Linda Carman told friends she and her son were going fishing at "striper rock," which is 20 nautical miles off the coast of Block Island. Nathan Carman, however, told a fellow boater that he was headed to the Canyons, nearly 100 nautical miles offshore. The boat sank near Block Canyon, which is south of New York and east of New Jersey.

On Wednesday night, Eyewitness News saw police stop by Linda Carman's Middletown home. They left after about 15 minutes, but it is unclear why they went there.

Eyewitness News also obtained a copy of the 2014 search warrant for Nathan Carman's Middletown apartment on George Street.

The Carmans have made headlines before.

In 2013, Nathan Carman's grandfather died in his home in Windsor. An investigative source said Nathan Carman is a person of interest in the case.

Not only do police pin Nathan Carman as the last person to see his grandfather alive, they also said he bought a rifle with the same caliber used in the murder, but none of that was enough to get an arrest warrant.

Clark Carman, however, said he believes the past in the past.

"I wish the press would leave it alone," he said. "He was not involved with his grandfather, with his mother, it was a pure accident. He would never do anything like that. He's a good kid."

According to the search warrant from 2014, Nathan and his grandfather had dinner together on the night of Dec. 19.

Nathan Carman was supposed to meet his mother at 3 a.m., but was unreachable until 4 a.m. when he called her.

Chakalos was found by one of his daughters, shot three times in the head and torso on the 20th.

That’s the same date when police said “Nathan discarded both the hard drive of his computer as well as the GPS unit used on the morning of Dec. 20, 2013, both integral pieces of evidentiary value.”

As police continued to dig, they went to his home in Middletown, where they found several guns and handwritten notes.

The warrant shows police said “The notes contained details on making self-propelled Improvised Explosive Devices,” and also notes on sniper rifles.

They also learned that “Nathan Carman purchased a Sig Sauer 716 Patrol .308 caliber rifle from a gun store in New Hampshire.”

Police said that was consistent with the same caliber weapon used in his grandfather’s murder.

Nathan Carman refused a lie detector and police felt they had enough to make an arrest, but the warrant was returned unsigned, with the judge requesting more information.

The grandfather’s case is still active and open.

Police would not say if Nathan Carman remained a suspect when Eyewitness News asked them on Wednesday.

A $250,000 reward is still being offered for information leading to an arrest.

Linda Carman grew up in Middletown, CT and Nathan Carman lived there for a time. Nathan Carman has since moved to Vernon, VT.

Stay with Eyewitness News for continuing coverage of this story.

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