Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Lies and Shenanigans go on in the Marshall Police Department, Why won't one officer take a polygraph? Why did another tell us bold face LIES?

Update- February 11, 2009- Battle Creek Enquirer- 02/11/2009- Chris Olsen Accepts new City Manager job in DeWitt, Michigan
Battle Creek Enquirer- 01/23/09- Marshall City Manager Chris Olson will accept manager job in DeWitt, Michigan
WOODTV-News-12/16/2008-Marshall City Manager Chris Olson Resigns
WWMT TV3News-12/16/2008-Marshall City Manager Resigns

Update, March 1, 2009, Attn: Sgt. Tim (TJ) Bryant of the Marshall Police Department- Today is Day 226 since we asked you about your willingness to take a polyraph examination? What's the answer? What do you have to hide? I think we all know the answer to that question?

(TJ, Don't you think it would be right to obey the law and not block a sidewalk with your own car in front of your house at 615 W. Mansion? Or is this more of your own brand of Marshall Law?)

Many of your friends and relatives have told me you are following Mary’s blog and web site. I have an offer for you. Today during several interviews about the Mary Lands case your name came up over and over again. For the life of me I can’t understand how one
police-officer could be involved in so many dubious activities? Are all these people making this up to get back at you for some ulterior motive? I’d like to know the truth? Surely you do? You probably are getting tired of hearing my name just as I am tired of hearing yours. I’d like to offer you a proposition?

First, I would like to meet with you at your earliest possibility. Possibly Ketchum Park or maybe we could have a chat at the Fountain directly in front of the police department. I’d like to ask you about all these accusations made against you?I absolutely would want to meet face to face with the person who brings up things about me so that an explanation or denial can be made. I would like to hear your side of these allegations and what you have to say about Mary’s case?

Second, I am very familiar with the work of D/Sgt. Geoffrey Flohr. He presently has over 26 years current law enforcement experience with public and private licensure in Michigan as a polygraph examiner. He also is full member of the American Polygraph Association. You may also know of this investigator’s respected credentials at the Michigan State Police. He is called the "Closer" at MSP for his careful and deliberate manner in completing investigative interviews. D/Sgt. Flohr does polygraph examination on his own. It is permissible under MSP policy as long as the subject taking the polygraph has not yet been charged in any criminal matter. One would think, if you have nothing to hide, you would jump at the opportunity to answer certain questions and for the polygraph result in your examination to be a clear "no deception indicated." I know that D/Sgt. Flohr is not concerned about the result favoring the person talking the polygraph or for the state’s case. His only concern is to know he administered a fair and proper polygraph examination. When the test is reviewed by his peers they also should come up with the same conclusion.D/Sgt. Flohr charges approximately $500.00 for his examinations and he is accredited across the state in its use. I’d be willing to pay any and all the costs of the polygraph for you if you would agree to take a test? If TJ Bryant has nothing to hide then you would have no reason to refuse my offer. I challenge you to take a polygraph and show that you are not the law breaking rogue cop that some people say you are? This could go a long way in reassuring the minds of many citizens that you are truly innocent of the allegations against you.
So how about it TJ? Lets start with a meeting on your day off at Ketchum Park or the Circle Fountain in Marshall. We can then go from there. What do you have to lose? You use polygraphs every day as a resource tool. Why not use this tool to prove you have not done any of the things that people have alleged? There has been a dirty cloud hanging over your head now for over ten years. Why not try to clear yourself? Prove to the people you really are an honest and dedicated police-officer, or can't you prove it?

Resigned/Fired? Former MPD Chief Olson, FOIA Emails-11/20/07-01/21/08

July 30, 2008- We are not pleased in having to post this particular revelation on Mary’s blog and hoped it was not accurate, however the facts speak for themselves.
We have tried to work with the Marshall Police Department and know that Mary’s case has been difficult from the start, but we believed in the last 12 months they were doing everything possible to solve the case. 4 years, 5 months, and 7 days later we again feel that this is not true. Why? Because we continually are told lies by those who are in charge.
In February 2008 Sgt. Scott McDonald, acting police chief, was informed of drug activity at the Marshall High School. He was provided names and informed that drugs were stored in the school lockers of the students. He immediately stated he would take care of the matter and added that the principal of the high school welcomes law enforcement in with drug dogs because of the zero tolerance policy. Sgt. McDonald stated that a search would absolutely be undertaken and he would seek the services of the Calhoun County Sheriff and their K-9 deputies.
Law enforcement did not initiate any search and in April 2008 I again brought up the matter and Acting Chief McDonald gave a "wink and a nod" that it was being done. We were concerned because the information on the drug activity continued to come in and the school year was drawing to an end. In June, he was then again asked about the search and replied that he had passed along the information. To the best of his knowledge the search was completed in May and nothing was found.
I was willing to accept this answer but because of a pattern of misinformation in the past I requested Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) from the Calhoun County Sheriff on "all reports at Marshall High School from 01/15/2008 to end of school year regarding drug search on student lockers." On July 15, 2008 Sheriff Byam responded that he was unable to locate any records for such a search. Last week I submitted a follow-up request to his response asking, "can you advise if your office was informed and unable to complete the request of the Marshall Police Department or did you not receive a request from the Marshall Police Department to conduct a search asking for K-9 resources?" I have no doubt that per the initial response from Sheriff Byam he is going to reply he was never asked for K-9 resources to search the school. August 4, 2008- Sheriff Al Byam's office sent me a letter concerning follow-up to his FOIA response of July 15, 2008. He indicated he needed another (10) ten days to respond. This is acceptable under FOIA protocol.
He then confirmed for the 2nd time there was no request for a search by MDP and no search was done.

August 18, 2008- As you know, we have been trying to ascertain the truth on a hallway walk-by search of the student school lockers for drugs at the Marshall High School. We were advised by MPD that this was completed prior to the end of the school year, but with no results. Because of inconsistent information, 2 FOIA requests were submitted to the Calhoun County Sheriff on the reports and results of any search during the latter part of the 2008 school year. 2 FOIA responses from the Sheriff confirmed there was no request by MPD and no search conducted. Additional FOIA requests were submitted to the City of Marshall, and today I received a response from their FOIA coordinator.
Response from City of Marshall, FOIA Coordinator;
Detective Sergeant McDonald has reviewed your August 8, 2008 FOIA request for "materials related to any reports, complaints, records, requests and any documentation that may be released under FOIA made by you and/or your department to the Calhoun County Sheriff Department regarding the use of their K-9 resources. The period of interest is between January 15, 2008 and the end of the school year." There are no documents applicable to FOIA that meet your request. Chris Zuidema
Administrative Assistant
City of Marshall (269)781-5183 xt 1129

Again we ask, When are these lies going to stop? When will we see justice in Mary’s case?

What does this all indicate? It indicates we have been told more lies. My only conclusion on why this search was not completed was because the Marshall Police Department did not wish to pursue it. Yes, there probably are some dubious students at the high school who the police know are always in trouble and might have drugs in their possession and could have been apprehended. It just seems that the search was not undertaken because perhaps some students who might also have drugs would be from families of the more affluent members of society in Marshall. The MPD can’t be bothering those individuals with such a minor distraction as these parents being called that their children had been arrested. That is what is really sad. If the drug dogs would have went into the school in March and not even found anything then at least you could bet that the high school would have been drug free for the rest of the school year because students would be afraid of being caught. All materials of the
FOIA request will be fully published in full as soon as the latest response from Sheriff Byam is received.

What does this mean? It means if you have money and power in Marshall, Michigan your daughter will be found if missing and the person/s responsible will be held accountable in a court of law. If you are of modest means and in need of government services such as the police department you are on your own.
Incompetent members of the police department just go about doing what they want to do to anyone at anytime. The bogus trespass notice to me by Officer Ivey is a prime example. You may view the FOIA materials from the July 23, 2008 complaint of Barbara Ruddock. MPD-Ruddock Trespass FOIA, 07/23/2008
One thing is very odd. I video-taped my cordial conversation with Ms. Ruddock that lasted nearly 20 minutes on the sidewalk in front of her home. For my own protection I also have GPS documentation to prove where I am and where I go. The GPS clearly indicates my vehicle parked in front of the Ruddock residence during the time I had my conversation with her. Why is it that 4 hours later she is calling the MPD crying and upset that I engaged in stalking and harassing conduct? Who put her up to these actions and does it have anything to do with Sgt. Tim Bryant and the dog bite incident I was inquiring about with Ms. Ruddock. She claimed she is a psychic and told me about what happened to Mary Lands. In the police officer's own report Ms. Ruddock stated that she has been advised by her psychiarist to not bring up the matter of Mary Lands for her mental wellness. She didn't have any problem talking to me about it. Based on the information this would seem to be a false police report that she made to the MPD. The other person who was issued a trespass notice never even went to the property. She called the residence and Officer Ivey issued a trespass notice because of a telephone call? Where in the statute is it that a trespass notice can be issued under these type circumstances? Maybe under Marshall Law, but not in accordance with actual law and Michigan statutes. A copy of the six word Marshall City Ordinance is on the last page of the FOIA. The no trespass notice and the statutes they reference are ludicrous. This same officer tried to charge Cliff, Anita, myself and another with a bogus home invasion charge in 2006. This was on the complaint of Chris Pratt after he vacated the apartment at Waldon Pond that still was in Mary's name. Oh, but then remember, Chief Mike Olsen gave the Marshall's a "wink and a nod" that this was all nothing and not to worry about it. It appears another officer can lie and not be accountable in a simple dog bite incident and get away with it.

Certain people with a badge and gun are using their positions to intimidate and harass citizens because they have a specific agenda. Officers at MPD should be investigating the status of a sex offender residing at 329 West Mansion Street directly across the street from a school and child day care. They should be investigating 330 North Marshall, a sex offender in that residence where a minor child also resides. They should also be looking at the 21 sex offenders that reside in the city limits and ascertain if they are in full compliance with guidelines of the Michigan Sex Offender Registry? This abuse of power is wrong and it takes away from our civil rights.

There is a specific statute under federal and state law that precludes police-officers from abusing their authority. This has been going on for quite some time and many would like to know when is all this going to end? Where is the new chief or a permanent one that is willing to step forward and clean up this befuddled bunch of bumbling misfits? Why hasn’t the city manager, Chris Olsen stepped in? He stepped in to fire Chief Olsen? Oh that’s right, "We are part of the problem, not part of the solution." No wonder a police chief has not yet been appointed? What professional cop would want to walk through the doors of that department? It probably is the same reason why Deputy Chief Pherson left to become police chief in Coldwater? Who can be proud to say they are a police officer in Marshall? Very few….

Acting Chief McDonald stated in FOIA response earlier this month that Mary's case is an open homicide investigation being conducted by the MPD. If this is true why wasn't Mary's family advised of this change in status and what is that indicates she is now a homicide victim? The family at least should be kept up to date on the status of the investigation. If you can't or won't solve the Mary Lands case turn it over to an agency that will find her and prosecute the person/s involved. Just stop with your dirty tricks and lies!

On March 12, 2008 numerous law enforcement officials stood together at Mary’s 4th anniversary vigil holding her sign, Where is Mary? Many had never been there before and we deeply appreciated their gesture, and the words, "We will never forget" Four months later we have to wonder if this was just another dog and pony show for the November elections? Many people believe that is exactly why they were there.

Run for election to any office you are seeking but don’t put justice on hold until January 1st because you are all too busy campaigning and doing other things. Christopher Pratt is in prison for his convictions of crimes against another woman. We are not satisfied with his present incarceration. You supposedly call him a "person of interest" in Mary's case. What effort are you making today to charge the person/s responsible for the disappearance and murder of Mary Denise Lands? All we are asking for is honesty and justice. Do the jobs for which you were appointed or elected. Wear your badge with pride and take pride in the job you do.

This is the right way a dedicated and professional police chief in Orlando and his agency handle police corruption. When will we see this type of action on our own local news reports?
Here is another ongoing tragic story of a missing child, Caylee Anthony, in Orlando, Florida.
The difference is that Orange County Sheriff Kevin Beary and State's Attorney Lawson Lamar know how to investigate crimes of violence, especially crimes against a defenseless child. They know what to do when a suspect "lawyer's-up" Read the attached PDF file from a prosecutor in the Orlando Office. http://www.wftv.com/download/2008/0829/17335521.pdf It gives you a real understanding of the facts in the case and it shows that these agencies know how to handle difficult cases.
These are real cops doing real police work. Take a few minutes to read about Caylee and the unusual circumstances of her disappearance over one month ago. http://www.wftv.com/news/17340180/detail.html Take the time and call a member of law enforcement if you have any information about any crime. We could see this type of story right here in Calhoun County but you must pick up the phone.

December 12, 2008- More Shenanigans in the Marshall Police Department, A limited redacted version of 2 separate disciplinary actions in 2007 against former sergeant Ivey was received from the City of Marshall, however it does make some reference to why she was demoted. Charges include Conduct Unbecoming Departmental Personnel, Neglect or Inattention to Duty, Unsatisfactory Performance, Request for Assistance. An appeal will be submitted on both discipline actions and the circumstances in those cases. MPD Sgt. Rebecca Ivey-Demotion to patrol officer-10/09/07, Limited FOIA Response, City of Marshall-12/12/08

MPD Sgt. Rebecca Ivey-Demotion to patrol officer-10/09/07, Limited FOIA Response, City of Marshall-12/12/08

Monday, November 24, 2008

Oh Mary Don't You Weep...

Update- 11/24/2008- WWMT Channel3 News-11/18/2008

WOOD TV8 News-AG Considers Lands case 11/18/2008

WZZM 13News 11/17/2008

WXMI Fox17News 11/15/2008

Anita Marshall would like people to remember this particular video, the words and the song by Boss, Bruce Springsteen..
Oh Mary Don't you weep, Mary Lands-4th Anniversary Vigil, 03/12/2008

January 12, 2009 wil sadly marked, 4 years & 10 months since Mary Denise Lands purportedly walked away from her apartment at Waldon Pond Town Homes, #7, 1200 Arm Street in Marshall, Michigan at approximately 10:00 P.M. on the wintry evening of Friday, March 12, 2004. Weather conditions on that date and time were recorded to be; 19 degrees, 10-15 mile per-hour winds, intermittent snow flurries, with snow on the ground. Mary was attired in light-weight blue medical scrub pants with a "Sponge Bob" print scrub shirt, soft slip-on athletic shoes with no heel back, and wearing her favorite winter brown leather bomber jacket. This was the report of her fiancé, Chris Pratt. 44 hours after she allegedly went missing he called her mother and father in California to ask if they had seen Mary? The family then notified the Marshall Police Department.

The 5th winter season since Mary disappeared is just around the corner. Before long it will be the 5th Thanksgiving Day, the 5th Christmas Day and the 5th New Year that the Marshall family have endured not knowing the fate of their beloved daughter? Chris Pratt still refuses to speak or offer help in the search for Mary as he sits in prison cell at Bellamy Creek Correctional Facility in Ionia. As most people are aware, he was sentenced to a minimum of four years and eight months to a maximum of 15 years in prison. He was convicted by a Calhoun County jury in December 2007 for felony assault and other violent crimes against another girl-friend. He has now been incarcerated for 16 months. A possible parole could occur as early as February 2012. In about 3 years Christopher Luke Pratt could again be stalking the streets of Marshall placing victims, families, and society in fear.

The tenure of Acting Police Chief, Sgt. Scott McDonald of the Marshall Police Department seems to have lost focus, direction and interest in Mary’s case. He recently made a comment. "I don’t know what all this talk is about with Sgt. Tim Bryant?" He has been investigated and cleared of any allegations." This comment from the same acting police chief who claims to have initiated a drug search with K-9 units at the Marshall High School. That was a definitive lie. Maybe, if and when a new professional police chief from the outside is finally appointed there will be some positive change for the community and Mary's case? It has been 9 months since Chief Mike Olsen either resigned or was fired? Why is it that Marshall City Manager Chris Olson has not yet named a new police chief? It is this same city manager who met with Cliff & Anita Marshall after taking over his new job. He was not happy with our criticism of the police department in their mishandling of the case. He stated, "You are all part of the problem, not part of the solution." His poor demeanor and attitide toward Mary caused Anita Marshall to walk out of the meeting. To this day, he has never called the family or offered support in Mary's case. He has never appeared at a single event or even supported the family with a gesture of empathy.

Cliff Marshall related his frustration to me about an incident with Marshall Mayor Bruce Smith. In the past Cliff has attended and spoken at Marshall Council meetings. Many of us have done so about Mary’s case. After one recent meeting, Mayor Smith walked by Cliff and asked if he was supposed to speak? Cliff said no. Then Mayor Smith said, and who are you? He didn’t have a clue that Cliff was Mary’s father. Mayor Smith is another typical politician in Marshall and along with City Manager Chris Olson never appeared at any of Mary’s vigils or events. With an attitude like this from certain appointed and elected city officials it is no why the Mary Denise Lands case has not been solved. Out of sight, out of mind.

The Marshall community is now joyous and festive preparing for another happy holiday season. Events include fundraising for Dramatic Action Theatre Company, Marshall Scarecrow Days, Haunted Trail, Marshall Main Street, Nutcracker, the annual holiday parade, a Christmas candlelight walk, and It's a Wonderful Life - A Live Radio Show at the Franke. It may be a wonderful life for some, but not for all living and working in Marshall. Some things don't seem to matter, especially with the MPD investigation of Mary Denise Lands? If you listen to city officials there is no crime and there are no problems in Marshall. The city is just one great place to visit that will put a happy face and smile on everyone. The Marshall family, friends and supporters have been to the Brooks Circle Fountain at least 8 times since Mary disappeared. It didn't put any smile on our faces.

For the last several months some politicians seem more concerned about their election and re-election than in anything else. What about the question of justice for the person/s responsible for the disappearance and murder of Mary Denise Lands? After the elections next month, will there be a new direction? We really don’t know? We can only hope. Last March law enforcement officials gathered at Mary’s 4th Anniversary Vigil holding a sign, Where is Mary? They stated, "We will never forget." Mary's Vigil- YouTube, 03/12/08 You all made that commitment to the public and we hold you to your word. You cannot forget about Mary.

Letter to the Editor, Battle Creek Enquirer- November 8, 2008

Clifford & Anita Marshall and I wish to express our congratulations to Susan Mladenoff, prosecutor-elect of Calhoun County. It will be a difficult job but with her dedicated experience, professionalism and integrity we believe she will again be a great prosecutor for justice and our community.
The Marshall Police Department has clearly displayed their lack of empathy, ability or desire to solve the Mary Lands case. The City of Marshall police and public officials have told outright lies to the family. Their only objective is to ignore Mary’s case, and hope it all just goes away.
Well, we are not going to go away. We hope that Ms. Mladenoff will take a fresh look at all the evidence related to Mary’s case.
We have trust in the professionalism of the Michigan State Police and other agencies that would be able to assist the Prosecutor’s Office in closing this case.
We pray that Mary Denise Lands will be a priority and the person/s responsible for her disappearance and murder will be held accountable in a court of law.
On November 12, 2008 Mary will have been missing for 4 years & 8 months.
It’s about time we bring her home.
Jim Carlin
Justinian Investigative Services
Battle Creek, Michigan

A single person in our community can bring this all to a close today. You are asked to make one telephone call for Cliff & Anita with the genuine tip that can bring their daughter home. If you are afraid to contact the Marshall Police Department you can call another agency or directly contact D/Sgt. Mike Scott of the Michigan State Police, White Pigeon Post- 269.483.7612, D/Sgt. Mike Salmen, Battle Creek Post- 269.968.6115, or the Calhoun County Prosecutor's Office- 269.969.6980. You can do this anonymously, but either way make the call.
Please help, bring Mary home.