In my judgment Oakland County has not taken any positive action to solve the OCCK case after my daughter Cathy called Livonia in 2007. Ted Lamborgine, Christopher Busch, Gregory Greene , Vince Gunnels and Archibald Sloan, the only viable suspects identified to the King family, were named from sources other than Oakland County. The Oakland County participation has been silence or denial on these leads. The Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper is responsible for any improper action in the OCCK case since she took office on January 1, 2009.
When Busch passed a lie detector test on January 28, 1977 the OCP publicly announced he was no longer a suspect in the Mark Stebbins murder. Tim was abducted six weeks later on March 16, 1977. When three other polygraphers later determined that Busch had not passed the 1977 test, the OCP has refused to publish this contrary result or discuss it with me.
The Michigan State Police reports state that as of October 5, 2009 Jessica Cooper did not want to be kept advised on the OCCK case (Chapter 53). This result is directly contrary to her statement of cooperation with the Task Force which she made at her initial meeting with the Task Force on February 20, 2009 (Chapter 53).
Another disturbing factor in my review of the case after receiving the MSP reports on December 15, 2010 was the status of the evidence locations. The original Task Force apparently took no action to obtain evidence from the various communities involved in these four murders. The MSP reports contain several references as to the action taken by Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy and the revised Task Force Officers Cory Williams and Garry Gray to locate and test this evidence. For over 30 years no one had thought to complete this obvious result. This testing led to the possible involvement of Gunnels and Sloan in these murders.
After the October 27, 2009 meeting with the Task Force, Oakland County and the MSP took immediate action to take control of the investigation and to eliminate Wayne County (Chapter 56). As far as known to the King family Oakland County has not achieved any new results during the period it was in control. Also, at some time unknown to us, the MSP renewed its relationship with Wayne County.
Did Oakland County take control because it wanted to solve the case or to terminate the investigation? Are my concerns valid?
In previous Chapters we learned (a) that Wayne County and the MSP had determined that Christopher Busch was the leading suspect in the OCCK case,(b) that the first three individuals to fail a polygraph test had been identified by them between 2005 and 2010,(c) that Wayne County had taken appropriate action to locate and test trace evidence, and (d)that there was a mDNA match between Vince Gunnels and the third victim. Then, for reasons the King family has received no explanation, the MSP linked up with Oakland County and terminated the participation of Wayne County.
Chief Assistant Oakland County Prosecutor Paul Walton outlined this transfer in Section 3 of the sworn Bill of Particulars he filed in my second FOIA case where he stated as follows:
“k. To prepare my Power Point Presentation, detailing the strengths and weaknesses of the OCCK investigation, I spent in excess of 200 hours of work, and reviewed literally thousands of pages of documents for source information from FBI and State Police files. During this extensive review of the FBI and State Police investigators from the FBI and the State Police remained present with their records, acting as both custodians of these records as well as sources of information, as they were almost continuously queried during the review of these records, the materials were returned in their entirety to the FBI and the State Police and are not now, nor were they at the time of Plaintiff’s FOIA requests, in the possession of the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office , but returned after being reviewed.
l. I presented my Power Point presentation to the expanded Task Force at a meeting of the expanded Task Force at a meeting on February 26, 2010.
m. While the MSP has always been, and remains, the lead agency in the Task Force, the Wayne County Prosecutor then requested that her investigator, the former Livonia Officer who authored the conclusory report that Christopher Busch was Oakland County Child Killer be allowed to work with the Task Force.******* The Wayne County investigator was ultimately again asked to leave the Task Force”
The MSP reports have entries in December 2009 where Gray does not respond to Williams. During this same time period Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper terminated all contacts with Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy.
Having taken no action for 33 years, Oakland County took charge of the case after the October 27, 2009 Task Force meeting and has continued its streak of taking no public action since then.
The King family was pleased to learn that the new OCCK Task Force was formed in 2005. When my children wanted to participate in the 2007 five year television recognition of the OCCK in 2007 I phoned MSP Sergeant Garry Gray, the Task Force Commander, in late 2006 to keep him informed. Gray wanted to meet with me almost immediately and Don Studt, Chris and I met with Gray and Livonia Police Detective Cory Williams shortly after the phone call. We were advised the Task Force was following up on a lead involving Ted Lamborgine. This prompted Cathy to call Williams in July 2007 with the Patrick Coffey-Lawrence Wasser lead. Based on this lead, Williams and Gray later identified Christopher Busch, Gregory Greene and Vince Gunnels as possible suspects.
The King family later learned that Lamborgine and Busch had failed lie detector tests. The MSP reports which I received on December 15, 2010 indicated that Wayne County and the Task Force had accumulated the trace evidence from the many locations in which had been stored. This bothered me because no one had attempted to do this for over 30 years.
The evidence accumulated by Williams and Gray led them to consult with the Oakland County Prosecutor on October 14, 2008 for a search warrant for the former Busch residence. The OCP prepared the search warrant affidavit (Chapter 8, Exhibit A) on October 28, 2008. To my knowledge no one has ever contradicted the facts stated in this affidavit. It is my understanding that the Wayne County Prosecutor, the OCP and the MSP all thought Busch was the best lead ever received in the OCCK case when the October 28, 2008 search affidavit was signed.
The MSP reports and other facts indicate that Oakland County did not participate in the OCCK case until October 2008. The King family received encouraging oral reports but no written evidence prior to the October 27, 2009 Task Force meeting.
The Busch criminal files in both Genesee and Oakland County contain provisions that Christopher Busch will not be granted probation. However the ultimate result in both Counties was probation and no one will explain this result to me.
On June 29, 1977 the Genesee County Assistant Prosecutor Judith Fullerton wrote to the Montmorency County Prosecutor and stated as follows;
“Our office will allow Busch to plead guilty to Assault with Intent to Do Criminal Sexual Conduct Involving Penetration, but we will not enter into a sentence concession whereby Busch will be placed on probation.”
You will recall that Gregory Greene, the co-defendant in this case, was sentenced to life in prison and Busch, who did the same child, received probation. Ms. Fullerton is now a Circuit Judge and refused to talk to me when I twice tried to call her.
In the summer of 2012 Chief Assistant Prosecutor Paul Walton gave me the
Complaint in the Oakland County criminal file against Busch. It contained a handwritten note “No Deals R. Thompson”. He told me this meant no prosecutor could settle the case without his approval. Walton stated that if it happened today he would fire the Assistant Prosecutor who settled a No Deal case without his permission. I will discuss this aspect of the case in my Chapter on Mr. Thompson.
The results in these two cases support my concerns that who the defendant is may be more important than what he did. Do you agree?
Chapter 49: Richard Thompson
Richard Thompson was the Chief Assistant Prosecutor in Oakland County in 1977 and succeeded L. Brooks Patterson as Prosecutor. He drove to Flint in a snowstorm to attend the polygraph examination of Christopher Busch on January 28, 1977. Thompson attended the examination to determine if Busch was involved in the murder of Mark Stebbins, the first victim. On February 22, 1977 the Sunday News published an article stating that Busch was not involved in the Stebbins case because he had passed the lie detector test.
In early 2011 a member of the Birmingham Senior Men’s Club asked me if I would like to meet Thompson and I attended a function in his neighborhood. When introduced Thompson associated my case to a blue Gremlin. While we could not talk that night I contacted him later and mailed him a letter on June 20, 2011 requesting a meeting and providing him with some file material. Thompson stated that he did not remember much about this case. Although Thompson originally agreed to meet with me I received no further information to meet and discuss my original or subsequent letters. Since Thompson was from Oakland County this should not have been a surprise.
Among the papers I mailed Thompson was a handwritten police report dated January 28. 1977 of a Busch interview stating “Officers advised him Greg Greene told these officers that he, Busch, had killed Stebbins”. If you were examining the Stebbins case would you follow up on this lead?
The documents also included an undated email from MSP Sergeant Garry Gray to MSP Lieutenant Darryl Hill stating “…and Dick Thompson from the Oakland County Prosecutor’s office believed these two men were involved in the child murders.”
As both the Chief Assistant Prosecutor and then Prosecutor Thompson was responsible for managing the OCCK case for more than a decade. If you were responsible for solving the most heinous unsolved crime in Michigan would you remember what you did? Is this another instance where the Oakland County officials have conspired to cover up for 40 years the status of these murders for reasons unknown to the victims and the public?