Longform

Mormon Widower Doug Grant Wasn’t Counting on a Murder Rap When He Followed His Late Wife’s Instruction to Marry His Ex-Lover

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Ray's police report about his interview with White included this summary statement: "According to Chad, Douglas was adamant about [getting] the Ambien, which is a sleeping pill."

That was what Faylene's sister, Cherlene, had told the cop about what White supposedly had revealed to her.

But the audio of the White interview reveals that the physician assistant never did say Doug Grant was "adamant" about securing the Ambien scrip, only that Grant had reiterated the troubles they were having getting to sleep.

The pattern of Sy Ray's written police reports not matching (in important instances) what witnesses told him would not reveal itself for years.

In part, it would take a diligent defense attorney armed with a rare court order to uncover the extent of the detective's duplicity.

Ray told Chad White and others that the toxicology report was going to show that the combination of Ambien and Soma would have rendered the woman incapable of drawing her own bath and getting into the tub.

In other words, Doug Grant had to have stuck his wife in the tub where she would drown.

But Ray already knew the testing had failed to turn up the Soma in Faylene's blood and that he had (and still has) no proof that the woman ever did take the Soma.

Ray apparently never entertained the possibility that Faylene could have taken the Ambien herself and then gotten into the bath before the drug kicked in.

The detective also interviewed Sherry Lines, a longtime friend of Faylene's and a sister Mormon.

A tape of the March 2002 interview shows that Lines said Faylene had confided in her months before her death "that she wasn't going to be around that much longer."

"I've read some of her writings, and they sound very similar to that," Detective Ray replied to her.

Faylene had been dating Lines' brother Lance in early 2001, Lyons said, and she had expressed no intentions of reuniting with Doug Grant.

Lines told Ray that Faylene's obsession about her approaching death had kept her from getting closer to Lance.

"She had come to me concerned that, 'Maybe I shouldn't even be involved with him; I really don't want to break his heart,'" Lines told Sy Ray in the recorded interview. "Faylene said, 'I really don't think I'm gonna be around, and I'm just trying to get everything ready.'"

But Sy Ray later wrote nothing in his police report about the interview concerning Faylene's fears of turning her new love interest into a young widower, and not anything about her profound revelations of an early demise.

"Sherry had heard nothing from Faylene that would make her think that she was suicidal," is all the detective wrote, which though technically true, was misleading.

Ray also neglected to note that Lines told him that Faylene was "just really happy" after remarrying Doug. "She was really peaceful."

In June 2002, the detective contacted Page DeWitt, a local real estate agent whose role in the investigation would become huge.

Page was and is in the catbird's seat.

She is Hilary Grant's first cousin and provided Hilary a place to stay for months after the younger woman went to work for Doug's company. She also was one of Faylene's best friends and was close to Doug at one point.

Doug had given Page a sealed envelope to give to Hilary a week after he and Faylene remarried. Instead, she had opened the package in the presence of Hilary's sister, Holly, and read its contents.

The letter from Doug to Hilary was an apology for having hurt the young woman, and it told her to stay strong.

There wasn't one word about telling Hilary to "wait" for Doug to come back to her, or any indication that he wanted to continue the relationship on the sly.

Page resealed the envelope and mailed it to Hilary.

Detective Ray later insisted that he hadn't recorded this interview with Page at her request. That, too, turned out to be false. (Part II of this story, in next week's issue, will provide details.)

Ray's report focused mostly on Page's account of what Kari Handley allegedly had told her about Doug's urging Hilary to "wait for him" after his remarriage.

According to the report, Page also said she had learned from Kari that Doug had instructed Hilary to watch First Knight, the 1995 movie starring Sean Connery and Richard Gere.

Doug, in a case of gender reversal, apparently saw himself as the character of Guinevere in the period piece, Faylene as King Arthur, and Hilary as Lancelot.

In the movie, King Arthur dies after telling Guinevere to go with Lancelot, the proverbial knight in shining armor.

By the end of the movie, that's what happens.


On July 18, 2002, Sy Ray summoned Doug and Hilary Grant to the police station to "tie up some loose ends."

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Paul Rubin
Contact: Paul Rubin