Reporting Mike Hellgren
GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WJZ)– From an Aruban jail to New York City. The man accused in the disappearance of Frederick native Robyn Gardner touched down at JFK Airport Wednesday night. A judge said there is not enough evidence to keep him behind bars.
Mike Hellgren has the latest.
Giordano’s lawyer– the same one who represented Casey Anthony– said his client simply wants to get his life back in order in Gaithersburg. But first, he is in New York Wednesday night, a star turn appearing on a network morning show.
Gary Giordano is out of jail and Aruba, but he’s not out of trouble. Police on the island continue to investigate whether he played a role in the disappearance of Robyn Gardner, who traveled there with him and is now believed to be dead. Both are from Maryland.
A judge said prosecutors lacked evidence to hold Giordano, and he will soon be back home. He took the first morning flight back to the U.S. on Wednesday.
“It’s crazy,” said Wendy Wilcox, Gary Giordano’s neighbor. “Who would think in our little neighborhood, there would be an international story unfolding?”
Wilcox finds the case bizarre as it is troubling– an international mystery in her backyard.
“It’s scary,” she said. “And to know that’s going on in your neighborhood is unsettling.”
Giordano’s lawyer said his client just wants to get home and spend some time with his kids.
Aruba’s top prosecutor doesn’t buy Giordano’s story that Gardner drowned while snorkeling, and has cited Giordano’s past including accusations that several women made that he was violent and secretly videotaped them as evidence he should stay in jail.
“We know that what he told us about the moment the incident happened, his description of the situation is not in accordance with reality,” said the Aruban Solicitor General Taco Stein.
The FBI raided Giordano’s home in August, an investigation that is also ongoing. And this week, two neighbors tried to take out protective orders against him.
“I don’t think that the Aruban authorities can manage a case,” Wilcox said.
Prosecutors had tried to overturn Giordano’s release but he won another legal victory Wednesday when a panel of appeals court judges upheld that release in Aruba.
Gardner’s family issued a statement on the release saying that they are disappointed, but remain confident the truth will come out.