Tiffany Hartley, the wife of the man reportedly shot by “lake pirates” on the Mexican side of Falcon Lake last week, was back on television today, telling her story the morning after a memorial service for her husband, David Hartley. On Today, Meredith Vieira pointedly asked Hartley if she’d had anything to do with David’s death.
Tiffany Hartley has maintained that her husband was shot in the head by “lake pirates” while the couple were on jet skis. His body hasn’t been recovered, and she says she was able to escape on her own jet ski.
According to Today, Hartley spent three hours yesterday at the Mexican consulate. She said that she’d filled out a form — presumably the document Mexican officials have said they need to begin a formal investigation — so that Mexican officials could “get the ball rolling on getting the government to do something.” Vieira asked Hartley a series of questions about her story.
“Tiffany, Mexican authorities and even some Americans have questioned your stories, you’re aware of that — partly because there is no evidence at this point of a crime, no body has been found,” Vieira said. “So I have to ask you just point blank: Did you have anything to do with the disappearance and or the death of your husband David?”
“No, not at all,” Hartley said. “I loved him very much. And I went back for him, to help him, and I did what I could.”
“Why do you believe that authorities have cast doubts on your story?” Vieira said.
“Because we do have no evidence,” Hartley said. “We were in Mexico, and U.S. authorities can’t go over there. And I have no proof, I have no cameras, I have nothing. I don’t have the photos that we were taking. I don’t have anything except for my word.”
Viera: Yesterday, you told me, Tiffany, that ‘one of the boats came up to me’ — this is your quote — ‘and had a gun pointed at me, trying to decide what to do with me, and then they left.’ How close did these people come to you? Can you describe them to me?’
Hartley: Honestly, looking at the barrel of the gun is all I saw. I was pretty focused there. I couldn’t tell you what they look like. But they were within the length of my jet ski of me, which is about 10 feet.”
Viera: Why do you think, Tiffany, why do think that they would spare your life? If in fact they had killed your husband. Why would they want anyone around that could possibly ID them?
Hartley: I have no idea. All I can do is give God the glory. That’s all I can do. Is that he had touched them to leave me, and go and figure out with the other two boats what could happen, so I had that time to get away. [Without] God’s grace, I wouldn’t be alive.
Eric Lach is a reporter for TPM. From 2010 to 2011, he was a news writer in charge of the website’s front page. He has previously written for The Daily, NewYorker.com, GlobalPost and other publications. He can be reached at ericl(at)talkingpointsmemo.com