WASHINGTON (AP) April was shaping up as a fine time in Chandra Levys life. The young woman from California had a good job, a nice apartment and a romance during her first spring on the East Coast.
Her mother and father made a rare trip east from Modesto, Calif., in the first week of April to mark Passover at the home of Levys aunt and uncle on Marylands Eastern Shore. Levy wore a new gold bracelet that she said came from her lover, hometown Rep. Gary Condit, according to the aunt, Linda Zamsky.
The following weekend, Levy turned 24. She celebrated with relatives and godparents in the Washington area.
Then, she lost her job and decided to give up her apartment and life in Washington.
I dont really think it would be worth it for me to stay in D.C. now since I have no job or school to keep me busy here, Levy wrote in an e-mail to her landlords.
As April turned to May, something else happened: Levy vanished. Police still have no idea how or why.
Nothing in her conversations and e-mails suggests Levy was about to do anything dramatic. In fact, she gave every indication she would go home to Modesto. That is what she told her family, her landlords, even the man who dealt with memberships at her health club.
The biggest missing-person investigation in Washingtons history has been propelled by Levys relationship with Condit, D-Calif. Condit, 53 and married, has told police he and Levy were having an affair, a police source has said.
Condit figures into the timeline of the days leading up to Levys disappearance. He told police he last saw her April 24 and that they last talked by telephone April 29, a police source said.
Condit is not a suspect in her disappearance. Police do not even know whether Levy was abducted or killed, or if she went into hiding. While suicide remains a possibility, it is a remote one, police believe, because they probably would have found her body by now.
On April 20, Levy learned her internship at the U.S. Bureau of Prisons would end three days later because she had not been a student within the last four months, a requirement for the position. Levy had told a supervisor that while she had yet to receive her masters degree, she actually had finished the course work in December.
Levy turned in her badge on April 23 and had a farewell lunch with colleagues early in the week, according to a former co-worker.
Obviously, she was upset that she had lost her job, Police Chief Charles Ramsey has said. But, Ramsey said, police have not found any signs that Levy was distraught over the sudden turn of events.
She talked about her options with Condit when she saw him on April 24, the sources said. Condit told police she did not seek any job help from him, a police source said.
By the end of the week, Levy had made her decision. She would return home, perhaps just for a few months if she could find another job in Washington, perhaps for good.
She wrote her landlords, asking to break the lease on her furnished studio apartment. The building in which she lived has 24-hour security, a rooftop pool and laundry facilities on every floor.
We never had trouble renting the place, so we said sure, said one of the landlords. We wanted to get a date from her because I wanted to go back there for a while between tenants.
In her e-mail, which the landlords have released to reporters and provided to police, Levy said she would leave May 5 or May 6. I really hate giving up the apartment but I think I need to be in California for a while to figure out what my next move is, she wrote.
It is unclear what Levy and Condit discussed when they spoke by telephone the next day. But police have said generally that Levys conversations have produced no worthwhile leads.
Levy also telephoned her aunt that day, leaving a message that she would be heading home and had big news.
She was upbeat and full of life, Zamsky said, describing Levys tone.
Upbeat. One of the last people who saw Levy used the same word to describe her.
She was very much the same person I knew, said a man who works in the membership department of Levys health club.
Levy stopped by on the evening of April 30 to cancel her membership. Im not going to use my membership. Im going home, the man recalled Levy telling him. He appeared on ABCs Good Morning America on the condition he not be identified by name.
Police believe Levy returned to her apartment because her parents received an e-mail May 1 about plane fares for her trip home. Police also found evidence that she spent most of that morning visiting Internet sites related to Washington and California.
At some point, Levy turned off her computer. That is where the trail ends.
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