This is the day Jessica Cooper asked me to come to the courtroom of Judge Martha Anderson where she falsely accused me of a crime.
It is a crime in Michigan if you disclose the existence of a grand jury after you are served with a subpoena to appear. Grand Jury subpoenas contain this warning. I was served with a subpoena in early July to appear on July 20. I discussed this with David Binkley, my attorney in the Michigan State Police case and Lisa Milton, my attorney in the Oakland County Prosecutor case. I did not discuss it with anyone else.
Sometime after service of the subpoena and before July 20 Kevin Dietz of Channel 4 called my son Chris and me to meet with us. When he came to the house he advised us that the existence of the Grand Jury would be announced on the 6:00 news broadcast. When I told him that the person who gave him this information had committed a crime, he told me he had three sources.
On July 19 Cooper or Walton called Binkley and asked us to appear in the courtroom of Judge Martha Anderson the next morning. This was not surprising as I would not call a witness if I had not interviewed him or her. When we arrived the court clerk asked us sit in the jury room. After 20 or 30 minutes we were taken to the chambers (office) of Judge Anderson where Cooper and Walton were already seated.
To my surprise Walton told Judge Anderson that I had told Dietz of the existence of the Grand Jury. I do not recall any facts supporting this allegation. My response was an absolute denial. Rather than stating any supporting facts Walton repeated his accusation. I don’t know what Cooper and Walton told Judge Anderson in my absence. It is improper per for any judge to discuss any case unless both parties are present.
After we left the court room Binkley talked with Walton. It is my understanding that Walton admitted the OCP had no facts to support this allegation. Let me tack you back to the November 13, 2009 letter I received from Cooper where she states “The Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office is not an investigative agency. Rather. We prosecute crimes which have already been investigated by police…” (Chapter 62, Exhibit I).
If Cooper relied on someone else for this false information she should take appropriate action to punish them for a false report and allow me to sue them for damages. If it was all conjecture she should be punished for taking up the court time without properly preparing her facts. A court room is not the forum for pretrial discovery.
After I called Dietz to advise him of this situation he sent me an email denying I was the source of his information (Exhibit K). He then prepared a letter identical to the email which I picked up from his office the next morning and delivered copies to Cooper, Walton and the clerk for Judge Anderson. When I asked Walton at our June 25, 2112 discussion (Chapter 63) who advised him that I disclosed the grand jury information to Dietz he responded “Kevin Dietz”. I believe Dietz and not Walton. How about you?
If this is how Cooper treats victims how does she treat criminals? Is anyone in the media interested in asking her for Comments on this Chapter?
The following items are the 12 meeting dates without a check mark:
1. October 27, 2009: This is the date of my first and only meeting with the Task Force and is discussed in previous chapters. The Task Force did not answer any of my questions. I later learned that as of October 5, 2009 Jessica Cooper had not been kept current on the status of the investigation at her own request (Chapter 58).
2. November 13, 2009: The letter referred to for this date is attached as Exhibit I. When Cooper warned me of the criminal aspect of polygraph disclosures she was apparently unaware that her predecessor, L. Brooks Patterson, had previously told the media in February 1977 that Christopher Busch was not a suspect in the murder of Mark Stebbins because he had passed a lie detector test. Cooper has continued to deny me access to the contrary conclusions by three other polygraphers (Chapter 8, Exhibit A).
Cooper also states that the OCP does not publicize investigations. However, last year she publicly stated that she would not charge the officers who killed a customer at the Northland Mall because they did not intend to kill him. How many times have you seen or heard the prosecutor conclude that the deaths were a murder-suicide? If the conclusion is professional Cooper goes public. Is it possible her reasons for silence in the OCCK case are personal, political or control rather than professional? If so, silence was her only defense?
3. February 23, 2010: My unanswered phone calls requesting permission to attend the February 26 Task Force conference is a meeting?
4. February 24, 2010: I did call twice more requesting permission to attend the February 26 meeting. Cooper had my friend, Don Studt, tell me I could not attend. Perhaps Cooper can tell us how I asked for information discussed at the meeting which took place two days later.
5. Spring of 2011: My attorney in the FOIA cases was Lisa Milton. She was not contacted. In addition to being a friend and member of my former law firm, Binkley is also an acquaintance of Cooper. I asked permission to attend which was denied. Binkley advised me that Cooper wanted to terminate my questions on the OCCK case. I advised Binkley not to accept any further requests from Cooper unless I could attend.
6. July 21, 2011: This is the day I was called as a witness before the Oakland County Grand Jury. I am forbidden to discuss my grand jury testimony. I met with Cooper, Walton and another prosecutor prior to the hearing to discuss my testimony. We primarily discussed my testimony. I do not recall any discussion on the status of the investigation. During this conference I asked Cooper why she was not talking the Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy. Cooper responded with words to the effect that Worthy wants to be governor. Why political aspirations should interfere with a criminal investigation is beyond my comprehension.
Once Oakland County took charge silence again became the norm. In my FOIA cases the Oakland County Prosecutor successfully argued that crime victims are entitled to no information. It is my understanding that Jessica Cooper told her trial prosecutors not to talk to me. During this time period Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy responded to my inquiries and Chief Assistant Prosecutor Robert Moran and Wayne County Investigator Cory Williams conferred with the King family on a regular basis. Moran and Williams have visited with Chris and me on 5 or more occasions.
On October26, 2012 Cooper appeared on TV and stated she had met with me on 27 occasions. I will devote a future Chapters to the falsehood of these claims.
Sometime in the middle of this time period, the Michigan State Police returned to Wayne County for assistance. The King family does not know the time or reason for this change in procedure, but the Task Force responsibility is to solve the case. As discussed previously Oakland County has not identified one suspect in more than 40 years while Wayne County and the MSP found three suspects who failed a polygraph test, identified the hairs found on Mark Stebbins and Tim King with one found in the car of Archibald Sloan were a mDNA match, obtained the scientific evidence which had never been examined and identified the only suspect with a mDNA match to one of the victims. The King family would appreciate information on why the MSP changed its mind regarding Wayne County participation.
The King family was advised in June 2105 that all parties were working together for what may be the first time. For instance the names of all suspects have been placed in a computer system which allows the current investigators to compare any new leads.
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.
Oakland County formed a Citizen’s Grand Jury in the spring or early summer of 2011 to examine several cold cases, including the OCCK case. I have heard rumors that the OCCK case was added after the original filing, but I need clarification on this fact. The media has reported that two suspects in other cases were indicted and convicted as result of these grand jury proceedings.
Interestingly, the media reported the Oakland County Prosecutor introduced mDNA evidence in one of the other cases. However, as discussed previously in this Story, the OCP had advised me that the mDNA match between Vince Gunnels and Kristine Mihelich is not admissible. What’s good for the goose should be good for the gander!
Since I have received no reports on the Oakland Grand Jury findings on the OCCK portion of the grand jury, I have assumed no one was indicted in the OCCK case. The privacy provisions of the Grand Jury Statute limit third party inquiries on this result.
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?
Since Jessica Copper, the Oakland County Prosecutor, won’t talk to me about the OCCK case, I am setting forth my questions and conclusions regarding the polygraph situation as follows.
1. In Jessica Cooper’s letter on November 13, 2009, was she warning me that she would bring criminal proceedings against me for any publicity on the possible Christopher Busch involvement in the OCCK case as the result of the polygraph by Lawrence Wasser that was never taken?
2. In February 1977 the Oakland County Prosecutor publicly stated that Christopher Busch was not involved in the Mark Stebbins murder because he passed a polygraph test and he gave this information to at least two newspapers.
3. The Oakland County Prosecutor stated under oath that Busch did not pass the February 27, 1977 polygraph when she submitted the search warrant affidavit to the 48th District Court on October 28, 2008.
4. The first person to fail a polygraph test was Ted Lamborgine in 2005 (chapter’s 30 & 31).
5. When Assistant Prosecutor, Thomas Grden reported the failure of Vince Gunnels to pass his July 31 2009 polygraph examination. Jessica Cooper took no action to charge her staff with a crime.
6. If the Oakland County Prosecutor publicly states that a suspect passed a polygraph examination, should any subsequent results to the contrary also be made public?
7. What is the position of Jessica Cooper on enforcing the publication of the criminal provisions of the polygraph statute?
8. Did L. Brooks Patterson violate this statute in 1977?
The search warrant affidavit (Chapter 8 Exhibit A) prepared by the Oakland County Prosecutor contains two subsections discussing the Christopher Busch polygraph history. They provide as follows:
(3) V. “Affidavit has obtained and reviewed a polygraph report prepared by Ralph E Cabot, who at that time was a Michigan State Trooper and a member of the Polygraph Unit at the Flint Post. Cabot reported that he conducted a polygraph test of Christopher Busch on February 15, 1977. During the pre-test interview, Busch admitted that he was sexually attracted to young boys. He denied that he had anything to do with the Stebbins kidnapping and murder. Cabot tested Bush and concluded that he was being truthful. Based on these polygraph test results, Busch was not investigated further as a suspect in the Oakland County child murders.
Y. Affidavit further states that the polygraph charts from Christopher Bush’s polygraph test administrated by Ralph Cabot were recently reviewed by three polygraph examiners, Lt. Robert Dykatra of the Michigan State Police, Tim Larion of the Livonia Police Department and former State Police polygraph examiner John Wojnaroski. Affidavit was told by three examiners that the polygraph charts do not indicate truthfulness, and that at best, the result should have been deemed inconclusive. “
This information was made available to me on April 1, 2013 when the 48th district court granted me access to the search warrant file. Three experienced polygraphers believed Busch did not pass the January 27, 1977 polygraph test, while the conclusion of the initial polygrapher to the contrary was published and apparently relied upon by law enforcement for over 35 years.
The timing of the original conclusion that Busch has passed a polygraph test is particularly disturbing to the King family. This polygraph was taken on January 27, 1977, and Tim was abducted on March 16, 1977. If Busch had not passed the January 27 polygraph examination, he may not have been granted bail as a murder suspect. Furthermore, as noted in Chapter 29 the codefendant in Genesee County, Gregory Greene, more than once told the investigating officers that Busch had killed Mark Stebbins.
Is it possible the elimination of Busch and is companions as suspects on March 1, 2010 was an effort by Jessica Cooper to protect those officials who relied on a polygraph test to terminate further investigation on this portion of the case? The Oakland County Prosecutor concluded in 1977 that Busch was not involved because he passed a polygraph test. Are the victims and the public entitled to similar information when three other polygraphers disagree with this conclusion?
In the first letter I have received from Jessica Cooper is dated November 13, 2009 following the one and only meeting with the Oakland County Task Force on October 27, 2009. In this letter she states as follows:
“In addition, the publicizing of some information, such as that related to polygraphs is actually a crime.”
On November 13, 2009, I had no information that Ted Lamborgine, Christopher Busch or Vince Gunnels had been polygraphed. Therefore, I assumed that the quotation was related to the polygraph that Lawrence Wasser/Christopher Busch which was discussed in Chapter 21. It is my understanding that Wasser never commenced the Busch polygraph. I did not understand why any reference to their conversation was a crime under the polygraph statute. If any prosecutor or criminal lawyer reviewing this chapter has legal authority to the contrary, I would appreciate having this brought to my attention.
Imagine my surprise when I received the Michigan State Police reports on December 15, 2010. The report contained newspaper articles which L Brooks Patterson, then the Oakland County Prosecutor, was quoted as saying that Chris Busch was not a suspect in the Mark Stebbins murder because he had passed a polygraph test. The MSP reports also indicated that Oakland County Chief Assistant Prosecutor, Richard Thompson, was present at Busch’s polygraph presumably to determine if Gregory Greene and/or Busch were involved in the murder of Mark Stebbins, the first victim.
On November 13, 2009 was Cooper warning me that any reference to the Wasser/ Busch polygraph, which was never taken, was a crime while the statute provides some exemption to prosecutors? Am I entitled to an explanation from Jessica Cooper why her office is entitled to publicize polygraph information while I or any other victim is not?