“When one person makes an accusation, check to be sure he himself is not the guilty one.”
Dan Kavanaugh has always been an interesting character in this mystery. And though, like Chase Merritt, there is nothing actually connecting him to any element of this crime, if being ousted from Joseph McStay’s company, EIP (Earth Inspired Products), and hacking into Joseph’s financial accounts and profiting from these murders makes one a suspect–then Dan’s a suspect.
But for years we caught only glimpses of the man in one or two broadcasts on this case. Dan would always claim in these rare interviews that he was part owner of Joseph’s company EIP. This would be met by Joseph McStay’s father, Patrick’s emphatic retort from Facebook that Dan was most definitely not his son’s business partner.
And there apparently had been unexplained monies taken by Dan from Joseph’s PayPal accounts, starting February 6th, before anyone knew that the family was missing. There was the heated email back and forth between he and Joseph shortly before the McStays went missing. And at trial we learned that Dan had indeed been cancelled. The two men he sold EIP to in 2011 had ties to the medicinal marijuana trade, which sparked all kinds of intrigue. And we learned at trial that Dan had profited by over 200k after Joseph’s disappearance. But otherwise, Dan remained a mystery.
But then close to the start of trial an ex-girlfriend/friend came forward with a remarkable story– According to opening statements by the defense, this friend of Dan’s approached the FBI, San Bernardino Investigators and the defense with claims that Dan had admitted to abducting and murdering the McStays. And during Investigative Discovery’s “Two Shallow Graves” we got to see this ex first hand.
Rajan Maline Opening Statements
But this ex never took the stand at trial. And no one could find Dan for all 5 months of trial as he was sought after to be a witness for the defense– the million dollar question being, with Dan relied on for every single San Bernardino search warrant on this case, why wasn’t Dan the prosecution’s star witness?
And then “Two Shallow Graves” was aired and Dan Kavanaugh appeared in all his glory. An enigma revealed.
Dan admited on national television to hacking Joseph’s financial accounts–not just after Joseph went missing, but well before he went missing. (At trial there was some mention that Dan was also spreading discord with Metro Sheet Metal, telling that owner that Joseph was cheating him out of a percentage of the sales as well.)
We in the public didn’t know that Dan had actually hacked the financial accounts. But investigators did. How this didn’t clear Chase immediately as a suspect is remarkable.