Friday, June 12, 2009

Michigan Court of Appeals Affirms all convictions of Christopher Luke Pratt

Battle Creek Enquirer- 06/13/09

BREAKING NEWS- The Michigan Court of Appeals in a 9-page decision affirmed all the charges and the convictions of Christopher Luke Pratt. The full decision may be read at the Michigan COA website;
The decision at the end read; In our view, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in considering the entire course of conduct beginning before and continuing through the unlawful imprisonment.
The trial court considered the entire course of events during the 15 or 20 minute incident, during which defendant, who was over six feet tall and weighed approximately 300 pounds, demanded that the victim, who was five feet, two inches tall and weighed just over 100 pounds, give him the cordless telephone; slammed the telephone on the ground, telling her that she would never discover who he was talking to; informed her that he cheated on her and laughed; grabbed her in a bear hug, lifting her feet from the ground, and squeezed her so hard that he cut her finger on her ring; cursed at her and used derogatory names; pulled down a baker’s rack full of items that scattered near the victim; ripped the telephone cord out of the wall when the victim ran to the telephone and tried to use it; and pushed the microwave oven off of the kitchen counter near her feet. When the victim then attempted to run out of the house, defendant grabbed her keys, threw them outside, blocked the doorway and restrained her. He then left in his truck when she told her son to call the police.

The threatening, anxiety-producing conduct continued throughout the commission of all the crimes, including the unlawful imprisonment. Under the facts of this case, the fear and anxiety during the short time of the unlawful imprisonment could not be separated from the incident. In the present case, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in determining that defendant’s conduct was designed to substantially increase the fear and anxiety the victim suffered during the unlawful imprisonment.

/s/ Karen M. Fort Hood
/s/ Mark J. Cavanagh
/s/ Kirsten Frank Kelly

MDOC Information, Inmate # 673261-Christopher Luke Pratt

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Michigan Court of Appeals considers Pratt convictions

June 2, 2009- People of the State of Michigan v. Christopher Luke Pratt was the first case called this morning at 10:00 A.M. in the Hall of Justice, Michigan Court of Appeals. The 3 judge panel included Judge Karen M Fort Hood, PJ, Judge Mark J Cavanagh and Judge Kirsten Frank Kelly, JJ. Presiding Judge Fort made an opening statement that all the judges were very familiar with each of the cases being called and she asked that the attorneys be brief and to the point. Present in the room were approximately 12 other attorneys for various cases, and several spectators. About 10 minutes before court commenced Jeff Pratt and his mother, Louise Pratt showed up. Jeff was dressed more for a night of drinking at his Moose Lodge than for what would be appropriate attire for such an esteemed judicial proceeding.
A representative from the Calhoun County Prosecutor’s Office was present however the actual oral argument was conducted by a special prosecutor from Kent County, Timothy K. McMorrow. He is chief appellate attorney for the Kent County Prosecutor’s Office. No attorney was present on behalf of Chris Pratt and presumably written arguments had already been submitted to the court. Inmate Pratt also was not present for the hearing.
The Pratt matter took exactly 2 minutes and the presiding judge then called the next case.
After the hearing was closed Jeff Pratt appeared visibly upset, dismayed and perplexed and started a conversation with Mr. McMorrow. He did not realize he was speaking to the prosecutor and not his brother’s attorney. He asked, What happens now? Jeff did not appear to be in a very happy mood when he left the building.
In my opinion, it will be approximately a month before Inmate Christopher Luke Pratt will be sitting in his Level IV cell at St. Louis Correctional Facility and learn that all his convictions were affirmed by the Michigan Court of Appeals. You may follow the appellate process online-

At the entrance of the massive Michigan Hall of Justice there are four words etched in marble; Freedom, Truth, Equality and Justice. These concepts, the foundations of our constitution, invite reflection by all who enter. Let it be known that each member of the Pratt kin should also reflect. They should reflect on the fact that Christopher Luke Pratt, now Inmate Pratt #673261 was properly and appropriately convicted for violent felony crimes in Calhoun County against a former girl friend. He is a criminal perpetrator of domestic violence who enjoys battering women. He battered his first wife, he battered Mary Denise Lands, and he battered a more recent girl-friend. He is not going to batter anyone else for 15 years.
The Pratt family should now be thinking about the crimes committed against Mary Denise Lands. Their family can help bring Mary home and contribute to some type of closure for all involved in this horrific tragedy. Sooner or later it is going to happen. Jeff Pratt and others would be wise to convince their family member to do the right thing. The Marshall family is not going to go away until they can bring their daughter home to her final resting place. You'll see us at vigils, events, court hearings and every single parole hearing for Inmate Pratt until 2022. We will vehemently oppose any parole for your family member. Instead of all your denials that Inmate Pratt had anything to do with Mary's disappearance and murder you should put more effort into having someone step up to the plate and admits their responsibility. The Marshall family have suffered enough and you can make this come to an end. Do the right thing and do it now.

Do you want Inmate Christopher Luke Pratt paroled? Help keep him in prison until 2022

June 1, 2009- It was just confirmed that Inmate Christopher Luke Pratt has had yet another change and a move in his prison status. He went from a Level II at Pine River Correctional Facility to Level IV at St. Louis Correctional Facility. Level IV is for inmates requiring close custody. Keep those letters coming to the Parole Board and MDOC. They do have an influence and we need to keep this inmate in prison until 2022 or until he is charged in the disappearance and murder of Mary Denise Lands.
May 27, 2009- Inmate Pratt was just transferred from Mound Correctional Facility in Detroit to Pine River Correctional Facility in Gratiot County, St. Louis, Michigan. The facility has expanded to include Level II prisoners and Inmate Pratt remains at Level II.
He will be eligible for parole the first time in February 2012, however because of the nature of his felony domestic violence crimes against another former girl-friend he cannot be released by MDOC prior to that date. In January 2008 Calhoun County Circuit Judge Stephen Miller sentenced him to 5-15 years.
Inmate Pratt has now been incarcerated for nearly 24 months. He did received credit for his county jail time while awaiting trial and has been in custody since June 24, 2007. Before you know it, he will be considered for parole.
We expect that charges will be brought against the person/s responsible for the disappearance and murder of Mary Denise Lands within a short time. In the interim, we must do everything we can to assure that Inmate Pratt is never paroled.
Every citizen has the right to provide their input to the MDOC Parole Board concerning the possible parole of any inmate. You are not required to live in Michigan. All one has to do is complete a Crime Victim Notification Request Form and send it to Crime Victim Services in Lansing. After your name and address is placed in their confidential records you will be notified of inmate transfers and pending parole hearings. You have the right to respond with your position in opposing or favoring a parole of any inmate. The Parole Board takes every one of these letters from victims and concerned citizens into consideration so it is important that you express your opinion. The inmate does not view these letters nor are they aware of your identity so your safety and confidentiality is guaranteed. I know this system works because in the last several years I have submitted letters of opposition on other inmates and they remain in prison.

MDOC Victim Services- Inmate Notification Request Form
To complete the form, include the inmate's name and MDOC number. Fill in the section with your information (victim), sign, and mail or fax to MDOC Crime Victim Services. If you are not the victim there is a box you can check as "a concerned citizen". It does not matter what your your relationship is to any inmate. Any person has the right to express their opinions on why an inmate should or should not be granted the privilege of parole.
Our community is at risk if Inmate Christopher Luke Pratt is released. Not only is he an eminent threat to his previous victims but he is a threat to others. Because of the nature of his crimes he should remain in prison until the expiration of his sentence in 2022. You can help make that happen.
We now have a large number of people on record who have sent in their notification forms to MDOC so they will be able to make their opinions known to the Parole Board. Our hope is that when Inmate Pratt’s parole hearing is scheduled that we will have 1,000 letters sent to the Parole Board opposing his release. You can help keep this vicious criminal in jail until 2022 or until there might be other action by law enforcement for allegations of other crimes.
If you need help completing the form, please feel free to call and I would even be glad to personally deliver the notification form if requested. I have a considerable amount of them available and pass them out on a daily basis to those who are interested. Help the Marshall family keep this evil person in prison. Had he been sent there years ago for his pattern of violence Mary Denise Lands would be alive today.
The forms may also be obtained by contacting MDOC Crime Victim Services. Their office has an outstanding professional staff that wants to help and answer all your questions.

Update- June 10, 2009- Don't let anyone tell you that writing letters of opposition for parole on any inmate isn't a good idea.
I submitted one opposing parole for this person and the Parole Board just made their decision.
Although Randy Tilman Slone, Inmate # 656705 was moved from the UP to Robert Cotton Correctional Facility in Jackson his parole was denied. He will not be eligible again until May 1, 2010. Keep sending those letters to MDOC Crime Victim Services. They do help protect our community.

Inmate Slone’s convictions:

Controlled Substance-Possession of Methamphetamine- 0-10 years maximum, CS - Operating/Maintaining a Lab Involving Methamphetamine- 2-20 years maximum.
He has only been in prison for less than 2 years. He deserves to remain their for another 18 years.

Michigan Department of Corrections
Crime Victim Services
PO Box 30003
Lansing, Michigan 48909

Toll Free- 877.886.5401
Fax- 517.241.0536

Jim Carlin
Justinian Investigative Services