Today, Cliff & Anita Marshall and I received a very warm and cordial greeting from officials of the Michigan Attorney General in Lansing. We traveled to the Capitol for a scheduled meeting with Criminal Division Chief David E. Tanay and Assistant Attorney General Dennis J. Pheney, Jr. It included a very constructive and positive 2-hour conversation. Accompanying Cliff & Anita to Lansing was a close personal friend. She has offered them support and comfort over these last several years and always been there to help the family.
In November 2008 the Attorney General wrote to the family and advised that they would review with local authorities the circumstances on the disappearance of their daughter, Mary Denise Lands, and consider providing assistance. We were previously aware that AG officials have been to Calhoun County to meet with local law enforcement authorities on Mary’s case. There have been very positive developments and we were assured that everyone is working together in a unified professional manner to help bring Mary home, and to hold the person/s responsible for her disappearance and murder accountable in a court of law. The Michigan Attorney General is pleased with the ongoing progress of Calhoun County Prosecutor Susan Mladenoff, Assistant Prosecutor Dan Buscher, Chief Scott McDonald of the Marshall Police Department, and the investigators from the Michigan State Police.
Cliff & Anita brought with them to Lansing a small quilt made by another daughter residing in California. Sewn into the quilt are pieces of the many colorful medical scrubs that Mary wore when she was employed by Day One Family Health Care in Battle Creek. They also brought some of Mary's personal jewelry, which was recovered from the home that Chris Pratt shared with a girl-friend prior to his arrest in June 2007. See Video/links, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlWlhjxFLMw
As most of you you know, in December 2007 Christopher Luke Pratt-http://www.state.mi.us/mdoc/asp/otis2profile.asp?mdocNumber=673261 was convicted of multiple felonies for a violent assault on that girl-friend and is currently serving 5-15 years in custody of the MDOC. He is now incarcerated at Mound Correctional Facility in Detroit and is not eligible for parole until February 2012. He is a suspect in the open homicide investigation of Mary Denise Lands, but has not yet been charged in Mary’s case.
We express our deepest gratitude to the Michigan Attorney General and all the dedicated professionals who are working as a team to close Mary's case. It is ironic that in two more days, on May 7th, Cliff & Anita will be celebrating their 44th wedding anniversary. Lets all work together to assure that this will be the last wedding anniversary they must endure not knowing the fate of their daughter, Mary.
Someone out there can provide that final piece of the puzzle for law enforcement authorities to close this case. You know who you are! You know the telephone numbers to call.
Help us bring Mary home.