Sunday, October 8, 2006

If this is "secured evidence" at the Marshall Police Department you can only imagine how they are handling the rest of the investigation?






Many people across the country have written and called asking about the condition of Mary's vehicle and the position by Chief Mike Olson and Marshall Police Department that it has always been held in a secure location and is legal evidence?

The family and I have no idea if anything of evidentiary value was found in the vehicle when it allegedly was examined by the Michigan State Police Crime Lab in Lansing, Michigan in early 2004? Under proper law enforcement protocol it is understandable that any information remain confidential. If any forensic evidence was found it hopefully is properly stored by the Marshall Police Department.

However if this is the manner in which the chain of custody and the continuity of evidence is preserved by the Marshall Police Department the entire 15 sworn officers should go back to the police academy and learn about evidence preservation. The department should also think about the position of detective. None are listed in the official web site for the city www.cityofmarshall.com

For quite some time the family of Mary Denise Lands has been asking that the Marshall Police Department give up jurisdiction of their daughter's investigation to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The incompetence and inability of the Marshall Police Department to even want to properly investigate Mary's disappearance and murder defies logic. Would you want these type of individuals investigating any crime in which you were the victim?

After another inquiry on October 2, 2006 on behalf of the family concerning the status of this vehicle it was quietly relocated on October 3rd from the open yard of the tow company to an undisclosed location. On October 6, 2006 a family member personally spoke to Chief Olson and was advised that the vehicle is being held as evidence. I'd like to see the evidence log and documentation for this article that has been retained as evidence for nearly 2 1/2 years. It may be under Chief Olson's, "Marshall Law" but no court in the United States of America or any prosecutor could conclude this is legal evidence.

December 18, 2006- Today the family received a letter from Chief Olson regarding the disposition of Mary's Dodge Durango. This was in response to my correspondence of December 9th, which actually was the 3rd letter concerning Mary's vehicle. A recent article in the Marshall Chronicle made reference to the position that the Marshall Police Department wanted to continue retaining the vehicle as it might contain evidence. Chief Olson reiterated that no decision has yet been made and he would review the matter with his investigators and John Hallacy, Calhoun County Prosecutor later in the week to see if it could be returned? His belief is that the vehicle may contain "trace evidence." Although we maintain that it would be impossible to legally use any contents on this vehicle as evidence after two years in the open storage lot of Bud's Towing we do appreciate the fact that Chief Olson is seriously reviewing the matter.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

mike olson and tim bryant need to be relieved of their duties as marshall police chief and police officer..

Anonymous said...

I have been following the case of Mary Lands,,, what im upset about is that the Marshall Police NEVER once said any thing about what she drove or if she even had a vechile at all, i just found out by looking at what was posted,, come on what is going on ,, that is NOT SECURED EVIDENCE IN MY BOOK, to many ppl in and out of it , shame shame on the Marshall police and BUDS towing to allow this to happen to this ,,,

Anonymous said...

I have always loved the memories I have of our crazy teen years together. Friends are saying Chris changed that day he crashed into that porch and received a head injury. Maybe what has snapped can be fixed...???

Anonymous said...

IT APPEARS THERE ARE PEOPLE WITH INFORMATION...PLEASE READ THE POST BELOW...PAY CLOSE ATTENTION TO ITEM #11...DO WHAT IS RIGHT...WHETHER A PERSON IS GUILTY OR INNOCENT DOES NOT GIVE THEM THE RIGHT TO WITHHOLD INFORMATION...STEP UP...DO WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE...

Here, paraphrased, is Stout’s list of 13 rules for dealing with sociopaths in everyday life. I pass them on to you in the hope that you never have to recognize a sociopath with the benefit of hindsight, the way I had to:

1: Swallow the bitter pill of accepting that some people literally have no conscience.

2: In a contest between your instincts and what is implied by the role a person has taken on—educator, doctor, leader, animal lover, humanist, parent—go with your instincts.

3: When considering a new relationship of any kind, practice the Rule of Threes regarding the claims and promises a person makes, and the responsibilities he or she has. Make the Rule of Threes your personal policy. One lie, one broken promise, or a single neglected responsibility may be a misunderstanding. Two may involve a serious mistake. But three lies says you’re dealing with a liar, and deceit is the linchpin of conscienceless behaviour.

4: Question authority. At least six out of ten people will blindly obey authority to the bitter end. The good news is that having social support makes people somewhat more likely to challenge authority. Encourage those around you to question too.

5: Suspect flattery. Compliments are lovely, especially when they are sincere. In contrast, flattery is extreme and appeals to our ego in unrealistic ways. It is the material of counterfeit charm, and nearly always involves an intent to manipulate.

6: If necessary, redefine your concept of respect. Too often, we mistake fear for respect. In a perfect world, human respect would be an automatic reaction only to those who are strong, kind, and morally courageous. The person who profits from frightening you is not likely to be any of these.

7: Do not join the game. Resist the temptation to compete with a seductive sociopath, to outsmart him, psychoanalyze, or even banter with him. In addition to reducing yourself to his level, you would be distracting yourself from what is really important, which is to protect yourself.

8: The best way to protect yourself from a sociopath is to avoid him, to refuse any kind of contact or communication.

9: Question your tendency to pity too easily. Pity is a socially valuable response, and t should be reserved for innocent people who are in genuine pain or who have fallen on misfortune. If, instead, you find yourself pitying someone who consistently hurts you or other people, and who actively campaigns for your sympathy, the chances are close to 100 percent that you are dealing with a sociopath.

10: Do not try to redeem the unredeemable. Second, third, fourth and fifth chances are for people who possess conscience. If you are dealing with a person who has no conscience, know how to swallow hard and cut your losses.

11: Never agree, out of pity or for any other reason, to help a sociopath conceal his or her true character. “Please don’t tell,” often spoken tearfully and with great gnashing of teeth, is the trademark plea of thieves, child abusers—and sociopaths. Do not listen to this siren song. Other people deserve to be warned more than sociopaths deserve to have you keep their secrets.

If someone without conscience insists that you “owe” him or her, recall what you are about to read here: “You owe me” has been the standard line of sociopaths for thousands of years, quite literally, and is still so.

We tend to experience “you owe me” as a compelling claim, but it is simply not true. Do not listen. Also, ignore the one that goes, “You are just like me.” You are not.

12: Defend your psyche. Do not allow someone without conscience, or even a string of such people, to convince you that humanity is a failure. Most human beings do possess a conscience. Most human beings are able to love.

13: Living well is the best revenge.

Anonymous said...

The "Sixty-Second Shrink" material is interesting, but useless to anyone who is not in therapy or has a graduate degree in a related field. It would be nice to think that by reading such information enlightenment would occur. Unfortunately, it takes time to process and initiate behavioral changes. The analysis being offered up on this site seems to serve as a healing process for those who have been wounded by...whomever. In reality, it will take a cunning manipulator of the same kind to trip up this "sociopath", not tear-filled self-help antidotes.

Anonymous said...

My "Sixty-Second Shrink" plea was to those who have information and maybe tring to protect someone who can not control themselves. It just seems so obvious by following this blog that many people (other than the MPD, as stated over and over again)"know things" but won't be specific. Maybe this was an accident, maybe a family member is tring to keep quite but knows they should step forward. My heart goes out to the family of Mary Lands.

Anonymous said...

This I understand and you are so right. There are indeed family members that know everything as well as a few choice friends. However, I don't have faith that they will share this knowledge. I still believe that the only way to get the information is to turn the tables by mirroring his behavior and getting him to trip his own trap...

Anonymous said...

That means there are 3 different pratts that know what happened to mary,if not more!!!!!!

Justinian Investigative Services said...

The comments about Sixty-Second Shrink are correct on both sides. A person needs to want to change their behavior and no one can force them to do so.
The postings on this site are to express outrage, comfort, frustration and yes, possibly convince someone to do the right thing.
We have people in law enforcement who won't do their job responsibly. Some of these are blowhard cops with an agenda to some day be a politician. If they can't do one job who would ever vote for them to an elected office?
Keep the comments coming as it provides comfort to the family and all who read the remarks.

Anonymous said...

Who were the officers that were in charge of the investigation at the beginning?

Justinian Investigative Services said...

Mary Lands allegedly walked away from her apartment on Friday, March 12, 2004 after a minor argument with her boy friend, Chris Pratt. He did not report her missing to a family member until Sunday, March 14th. At that time he called Mary's brother in California asking if she was there? It was approximately 6:00 P.M. EST, and 44 hours later.
Mary's brother then called the Marshall Police Department and it has been reported, but not verified, that Sgt. Scott McDonald and Deputy Chief Bruce Elzinga went to Mary's apartment, but a thorough search was not conducted.
Sgt. McDonald later made a statement he thought it was odd that none of Mary's clothes were near the washer and dryer.
A few days later Deputy Chief Elzinga then advised the FBI and the task force that their services were not needed and that he was taking over primary jurisdiction of the case. He told family members that he had prepared for 30 years to handle Mary's case. For the next six months Sgt. McDonald, who isn't even a detective, and himself handled the case under a false premise that Mary was an adult runaway.
It should be noted that Chief Mike Olson was appointed Director of Public Safety in late 2003. Although he should have been handling Mary's case he was notably absent in the many months of the initial investigation. I suppose he may have been trying to learn how to function in his new position in Marshall?
In September 2004 Mary Lands was then declared a victim of foul play. To this date, there has never been a "person of interest" or a "suspect" named in the case.
This entire scenerio and what the police call an investigation has been a disgrace from the first day.
Chief Mike Olson claims that he is some great investigator because he once worked for the Michigan State Police (MSP).
Chief, "You may have had some good people on your team at MSP back then, but today you lack any ability to even know how to solve a crime."
I could go on for hours about specific irregularities and the incompetent conduct of the Marshall Police Department, but those issues are being addressed by national media who are putting together a program about Mary's case. The family hopes that the outrage of a national audience will force the Marshall Police Department to be real cops and to do the job they are sworn to uphold. It may take more time, but we all know that eventually we will have "Justice for Mary" and the person/s responsible will be held accountable in a court of law.

I would like to make one more comment. Throughout my entire life I was raised around members of law enforcement and I was a third generation cop in my family. I was taught to respect people and especially those in authority. It does not give me any pleasure to comment about the incompetencies of Chief Olson and others in the Marshall Police Department. My parents taught me to honor the uniform and all officials I have a deep respect especially for those in law enforcement and the courts.
They are the first barriers of protection for our society. Mary's family and I tried for many months to cooperate and believe in the Marshall Police Department and that they were doing everything they could to bring Mary home.
As Anita Marshall has said many times, "We never had a manual to follow on what to do when your daughter goes missing and might be murdered?" The family put their faith and trust in the Marshall Police Deparmtent and they were betrayed. That betrayal continues to this date, which can be documented in the ridiculous manner that Chief Olson has handled Mary's vehicle as a piece of evidence.
That agency has been a joke in what they say and what they have done to solve this case. For over 2 years Mary's family has been told lies and been deceived by those who should have always been honest.
I have a great respect for the position of Chief of Police and any member of law enforcement, but I have absolutely no respect for a character like Mike Olson. This same attitude is widespread throughout the community of Marshall.
When he steps up and accepts some responsibility and does the right thing I can then think about changing my position.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone ever suspected elzinga and bryant of being involved with this cover up?

Justinian Investigative Services said...

In follow-up regarding Mary's vehicle we have determined that its whereabouts is presently unknown?
After the Marshall Police Department had it quietly moved from the open lot of Bud's Towing in Marshall we presume it is now being stored.
Is it now evidence? They claim it to be and will not state where it is located. Sources have told us that it is not in the garage of the city or being stored at the Sheriff's Department. Where can it be, this very important key piece of evidence?
Maybe someone in the police department is using it as an unmarked vehicle?

mike said...

the fact that the marshall family and jim carlin arent being told where marys durango is at is total nonsense.the MPD have completely disgusted me.they should not have badges.its time this town had cops that we could trust....

Justinian Investigative Services said...

On December 18, 2006 the family received a letter from Chief Olson regarding the disposition of Mary's Dodge Durango. This was in response to my letter, which actually was the 3rd concerning Mary's vehicle.
A recent article in the Marshall Chronicle made reference to the position that the Marshall Police Department wanted to continue retaining the vehicle as it may contain evidence. Chief Olson reiterated that no decision has yet been made and he would review the matter with his investigators and John Hallacy, Calhoun County Prosecutor later in the week to see if it could be returned? His belief is that the vehicle may contain "trace evidence."
Although we maintain that it would be impossible to legally use any contents on this vehicle as evidence after two years in the open storage lot of Bud's Towing we do appreciate the fact that Chief Olson is seriously reviewing the mattter.