Thanks to a reader for sending the following information about James Vincent Gunnels, victim and companion of Christopher Busch and Greg Greene.
As of December 16, Gunnels’ status with the Michigan Department of Corrections is “Absconder from Parole,” from Kalamazoo, Michigan. He is on parole for sale/delivery of meth.
Gunnels is the epitome of the child rape victim described in the June 17, 1977 editorial from the Traverse City Record-Eagle I posted yesterday. Emotionally and spiritually murdered, unable to erase emotional scars, may turn to lives of crime, drug addiction or prostitution. 2019-12-30_191653
None of Gunnels’ criminal history involves prostitution or violence of any kind to children. He has steadfastly maintained he knows nothing about the OCCK crimes. Another victim of Busch and Greene, (two years younger than Gunnels, who was born in 1961) who was also used as a lure to get kids close enough to abduct, was very forthcoming with investigators in March of 2008. He told investigators that Busch had him perform oral sex on a boy that Busch had brought down from up north and stated that it was the same boy that the police showed him a picture of in 1977 that was dead and identified the boy in 2008 as Tim King. 2019-12-31_083622. This victim also told police Busch kept handcuffs and a pistol in his car. He was clearly afraid of both Busch and Greene, as I’m sure Gunnels was.
But unlike this victim, Gunnels is saying nothing. As criminologist, Dr. Michael Arntfield opined in a recent podcast, these people, including Ted Lamborgine and Arch Sloan, are probably not talking out of fear of a person or people in high places, or their legacy. https://www.spreaker.com/user/jreubenappelman/episode6final. Gunnels was a minor when the OCCK crimes took place. He has had multiple chances to be honest, but he will never go there.
There is a lot about Vince Gunnels online and I have discussed him at length in my blog. Here’s a little more about Vince Gunnels.
And from 2012:
And from 2014:
When I find the transcript of a prison phone call recorded between Vince and his sister, provided in response to a FOIA request, I will post it. You can read it and decide for yourself if Detective O’Dell’s “license and registration, please” response noted above isn’t just a little defensive for good reason.
What a concept. Sometimes the Universe has a very interesting way of getting one’s attention. Tonight I was looking through some files after getting yet another heartbreaking email from a person who was trafficked in a pedophile/porn ring in the Detroit area in the late 1970’s. I was thinking about this person’s questions and suggestions on how to start some kind of out-reach for the many victims of these monsters. I looked at files I had on a man I believe may have been a photographer on Fox Island, the file I have on the late William Shaffer, a pedophile and child pornographer from Birmingham, MI, and one on a 30-year-old man from Farmington Hills who died by “suicide” back in early March of 1977, who I also believe was involved in trafficking kids. Shaffer and this 30-year-old were turned in as suspects to the OCCK task force back in the day.
In the photographer’s file, I found copies of microfilm pages from the Traverse City Record-Eagle. I don’t know why those documents were in this file and not in the “Fox Island” file. I had seen all of the articles before except one–an editorial in the Record-Eagle dated June 17, 1977, entitled: State needs porno laws. 2019-12-30_191653
Even enlarged, it is hard to read. But it is really important for three reasons: 1. Substantively; 2. The date–June 1977; and 3. The fact that is is in a Traverse City newspaper, not The Detroit News or The Detroit Free Press.
STATE NEEDS PORNO LAWS
Even people who profess to take pornography in stride are revolted by so-called “kiddie porn”–films and photographs showing pre-pubescent children engaged in sexual acts with each other or adults. Some of the children are as young as 3 years. And some of the adults are their parents. The very thought of it is depressing and sickening.
There is no way of knowing how many American children have been involved in pornography. But Investigator Lloyd Martin of the Los Angeles Police Department estimates that 30,000 boys and girls are sexually exploited by adults in that city every year.
Martin arrived at his estimate by interviewing molestation victims, adult molesters, pimps and pornography producers. “I would say that of that 30,000, it would be very conservative to say that 25,000 had their pictures made,” he said.
But as our own region well knows, child pornography is by no means confined to the large cities that are often the destination of runaway youngsters. In rural Franklin County, Tenn., a defrocked Episcopal priest was sentenced June 3 to between 25 and 40 years in prison for having run a “house of boy prostitution” that supplied photographs of wayward youths engaged in homosexual acts to adult male “sponsors” across the country. One of those sponsors was Ann Arbor millionaire Francis Shelden, who owns North Fox Island off Grand Traverse Bay, where acts of child prostitution and pornography purportedly took place. Shelden and cohort Dyer Grossman are still at large and being sought as fugitives from justice.
The leading crusader against child pornography is Dr. Judianne Densen-Gerber, a New York psychiatrist. Densen-Gerber is president of Odyssey Institute Inc., an organization that treats youth drug addicts, some of whom were victimized as children by pornographers. “They are emotionally and spiritually murdered,” she says.
Testifying before the Crime Subcommittee of the House Judiciary on May 23, Densen-Gerber acknowledged that efforts to suppress child pornography could run afoul of the First Amendment guarantee of free expression. However, she argued: “Common sense and maternal instinct tell me this goes way beyond free speech. Such conduct mutilates children’s spirits. They aren’t consenting adults. The First Amendment isn’t absolute.”
Arizona, Minnesota and Tennessee already have adopted laws making it a felony to use minors in pornography, and similar measures are being considered in about two dozen additional states, including Michigan. Since the laws are aimed at curbing child abuse, their sponsors are confident that they will survive court scrutiny.
But even if child pornography were to disappear tomorrow, its legacy will be felt for years to come. Many of the young victims, unable to erase their emotional scars, will turn to lives of crime, drug addiction, or prostitution. The social and moral cost to the country is incalculable. Michigan should not hestitate in enacting its legislation. It’s already too late for many
. . . SO DOES NATION
The national conscience is also being stirred by the revelations of homosexual pornography and prostitution of boys. Legislation is now pending which would make it illegal to transport young makes across state lines for the purpose of prostitution. A similar law protecting young girls has been on the books for years. The need for such laws is tragic but cannot be ignored. The bill should be approved.
The Record-Eagle, Traverse City, Michigan, JUNE 17, 1977.
As I was reading this powerful and prescient editorial from many decades ago, I got a Google Alert for the Oakland County Child Killer. That link took me to an editorial dated December 29, 2019, in the Record-Eagle.
Here the Record-Eagle editorial board reveals what its readers thought were the top 10 stories of the decade. The editorial describes the readers’ responses and further explains: “We humans are a mixed bag, and we connect to a variety of stories. This year our online readers wanted information on the potential breaks in the Oakland County child killer case, a former pastor arraigned on multiple sexual assault and meth charges, and a mysterious Lake Michigan ship wreck.”
What are the odds of me getting a Google alert to a December 29, 2019 editorial from the Record-Eagle mentioning that its readers (in Northern Michigan) want answers about the status of the OCCK case, while I am reading a June 17, 1977 editorial from the Record-Eagle about child pornography and pedophelia? I’d say the message is that the Universe is really sick of this shit–all of it. Human trafficking, child pornography, pedophilia, pedophile rings and the unsolved OCCK case. And the silence of Oakland County and the Michigan State Police.
The Traverse City Record-Eagle editorial of yesterday ends with “We found that, once again, we are moving in the same direction as our readers. We don’t move in lockstep, and we don’t always agree, but our care for the community and the role a free press plays in it is the same.”
I have more to say about Shaffer and the many men who keep turning up like bad pennies in documents and emails. Read that June 1977 editorial and think about this: That shit never stopped and no one protected those kids.
Well, that’s a stupid question, right? But take a listen to this podcast (listen to the very end) and ask yourself why, if the MSP were actually serious about (and not afraid or ashamed to) publicly solve and close this case, they aren’t doing everything mentioned in this podcast. It doesn’t require much time expenditure on their part and I doubt it is that expensive.
You don’t get to fall back on, “no more killings happened,” MSP. This is an outrageous case and failure of law enforcement. Time to right the wrongs of your handling of this case and to join the 21st Century.
As it should be, you pieces of shit. None of these freaks should ever feel safe. Ever.
Thank you to a reader who sent me this link:
Good for Michigan Representative Garrett, who has introduced a bill to let the sun in on the abuse of sunshine/open records/FOIA laws in Michigan. “You’re not open if you want to charge someone $1,200 for public records,” said Garrett.
Try multiplying that by 10 and that’s what the Michigan State Police charged my Dad for 3,400 pages of their files on Christopher Busch and Greg Green and other limited information. That’s roughly $3.50 a page. The MSP would squeal that they have to pay someone to go through the records and redact before they make copies. Whoever redacted these records did a miserable job. Left some names in and redacted a lot that probably should not have been, and of course did not give any reasons for the redactions. That would have required more court time. As it was, my Dad had to file a lawsuit when the MSP initially refused his FOIA request as it pertained to an “open” case. Right.
This FOIA case settled out of court. I like to picture the state police tossing out this huge sum for the documents thinking “fuck you, go away.” But then they had to take my Dad’s money and pony up. The last thing that agency wants is transparency–on anything. They had to comply with their version of the letter of the law by playing the high dollar game. They really had no intention of complying with the spirit of the law. I’m sure the real smoking gun documents and tape recorded tips never made it to the files back in the day anyway.
While, as this legislator acknowledges, the bill will require fine-tuning–it’s awesome she is putting this on the table. Even cost reductions and closing the loopholes on how long Michigan agencies drag this stuff out would help. Maybe THEN some news outlet in Oakland County will file a massive FOIA request for the entire OCCK case and do some actual investigative reporting. Or, more likely, a news organization outside of Michigan.
And if you are thinking, well that’s maybe what happened with Chris Busch–yeah, maybe. I think it’s more likely that his “suicide” followed closely on the heels of his little pow wow with Larry Wasser (the attempted polygraph on an unrelated CSC with a minor charge). We never learned when that polygraph pow wow took place, just that it was after March 1977 and before late November 1978. Others have speculated that he was an informant for the FBI or other law enforcement, or that he started trying to extort men who were involved with pedophelia and child porn, and this is why he was offed. You don’t extort the big boys and a police informant who turns out to be a serial killer is kind of a big problem.
Interesting that Dr. Arntfield opined in the podcast You Know They Know that police would never be as careless or messy as demonstrated by the Busch death scene. https://www.spreaker.com/user/jreubenappelman/episode6final. The scene was pretty ridiculous. Almost as ridiculous as the Bloomfield PD’s treatment of the scene and “investigation,” and as the Oakland County medical examiner’s “autopsy” and report on Busch’s death.
No way this young woman should spend another day in jail, let alone life in prison. And what is with these prosecutors who sit on child trafficking cases? WHAT THE FUCK?
Some of the reporting on N. Fox Island, Frank Shelden, Gerald Richards and crew from back in the day.Posted: December 15, 2019
This is a link to some of the news articles about the N. Fox Island pedophile/child pornography enterprise from the past. The quality of the copies is poor and there are words and columns that are cut off. Some are missing dates. Some of the articles were in the MSP file on Shelden, and one had some inexplicable redaction in it. Some of them are from The Detroit News. Check out some of the brave reporting Marilyn Wright did on these crimes.
Status: Exceptional clearance. Suspect is deceased and cannot be prosecuted but was obviously involved.
A reader sent me this link about the N. Fox Island Pedophile Ring:
This information may supplement that work:
The quality of many of the copies is poor. The content is horrifying and enraging.
The state police missed a few names when they were redacting. I have redacted the names of some victims the cops left on the pages while they were busy redacting the names of grown men who were linked to the “boys farm” and the “boys nature camp,” and the names of Frank Shelden’s family members.
Note the dates on these documents. If you lived in Oakland County in 1976 and 1977, ask yourself if you ever heard about the horrors taking place on N. Fox Island, especially in the context of the OCCK crimes.
Not that it matters. But people have started asking me who I think was involved in these abductions and murders. I think the evidence is indisputable that Christopher Brian Busch and Greg Green were involved. If you haven’t picked up on that by reading my blog, I can’t help you there. I think kids disappeared like this all the time in the Detroit area and on N. Fox Island, but as one victim said, nobody cared until it started happening in the suburbs.
Police reports reveal many, many names of pedophiles operating in and around Wayne, Oakland, St. Clair, Traverse and Charlevoix Counties in the 1970s. These monsters also helped produce child porn and snuff films. Frank Shelden was at the top of this shit pile until he had to flee the country to avoid prosecution for child rape in 1976. But all of these disgusting names that keep swirling around–Ted Lamborgine, Richard Lawson, Bobby Moore, Arch Sloan, David Norberg and many others–they participated by tricking, bribing, abducting kids and raping them. They knew these kids were being filmed and photographed. They knew some of them would never be and were never seen alive again. They trafficked children. This is obvious not only from the police investigation into Ted Lamborgine, but also the scrawny MSP file on N. Fox Island, containing transcripts of people who were victims of Shelden and Gerald Richards, including girls.
I think Chris Busch, an admitted pedophile since the age of 17 who was enabled by his wealthy parents, was sick enough to carry out the Oakland County version of what he saw happening in Detroit and Fox Island. Green, his monsterous side-kick, had spent a year in a state hospital in California after raping and victimizing some 50 boys and choking one of his victims almost to death before dumping him on the grounds of a hospital. Busch had access to his parents’ home in Bloomfield Hills (parents in Europe much of the time), as well as a cottage up north at Ess Lake, both easy places to hold a child captive. I think Green, described over and over again in the thousands of documents I have read as an extremely violent pedophile, was most likely the person who killed these kids, but it could have been whoever was participating in the end of the snuff films these freaks were filming. In all of the documents, it is clear that Green and Lamborgine were intensely violent men, and that Green was most certainly capable of murder.
Once these two freaks, Busch and Green, and perhaps “helpers” (and this could include Helen’s “John” who lived close to the Busch home and certainly seemed like someone who could use a little money for trafficking kids) had these kids, I’m sure they did arrange for abuse and filming by others during their captivity. Again, the documents I have read support this theory.
And I think it is reasonable to conclude that the first three kids’ bodies were dumped in plain view in Oakland County as a sick homage to Busch’s father, Daddy Warbucks. The heat was on in Oakland County, so Tim’s body was dumped in Wayne County. It seems evident from what I have read that Busch and Green trafficked my brother during the six days he was missing. So others not only knew, but were complicit. That’s why Ted Lamborgine failed his polygraph concerning this case and neither he nor Arch Sloan could find a way to take the deal LE was offering to make their lives in prison a little easier if they talked about what they know about the OCCK crimes.
I know there is a strong argument that Green was in jail when Tim was abducted and murdered. I’m not buying it. If he did “miss out” on Tim’s week in Hell on Earth, he took credit for all four crimes when he told his cellmate about his resume.
Many people write me often to tell me that their grandfather, their uncle, their neighbor, their piano teacher, and just about every other serial murderer across America who has never been caught, is the (and the sole) OCCK. Had I not read what I have read over the past 12 years, I could understand their beliefs. There were some unbelievable monsters living in Michigan and around the country who were/are capable of committing these crimes. But they didn’t.
Kids were trafficked, raped, filmed for child pornography in stunningly horrifying numbers in the 1970s. Frank Shelden is the Hades here and Gerald Richards, Dyer Grossman and Adam Starchild are right behind him. The Detroit area had a very organized pedophile ring. When people like Bob Moore saw how much money could be made in child pornography, they expanded their operations.
Busch and Green took it to the suburbs in a bigger way–kill the victims (no doubt on film) and dump their bodies in the open. A sick fuck like Busch would enjoy messing with the police. Of course he watched the media coverage and ate it up. And how about when he told cops where he liked to pick up boys?? The three abduction locations, in order, of Mark, Jill and Kristine. Tim had not yet been abducted. They system showed him time and again that he would never pay for his crimes. So he kept it up until someone put a bullet between his eyes.
The men who participated in the victimization or captivity of these kids need to be revealed, as do those who knew or should have known and kept their mouths shut. This cowardice, sickness and silence cost the lives of Mark, Jill, Kristine and Tim and no doubt numerous other children you animals considered expendable. I call on the relatives of Francis (Frank) Shelden to make a massive donation to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children by year end. If you inherited money from this man, it is blood money of the worst kind.
I think that if the MSP and the FBI fail to rerun all of the genetic evidence in this case and to use the most advanced DNA testing and genetic database searching currently available, and soon, that the Justice Department should investigate this investigation. It has been a questionable investigation since Day 1. I think the State Police and the FBI owe the families and the public at large an explanation of where this case stands as of today. I think the state police owe us (and the other families as well) the simple dignity of an apology for not listening to us and jacking us around.
I think the media in Oakland County and Michigan should take investigative journalism seriously and file a FOIA request for the entire OCCK case instead of relying on family members of victims to file and pay for FOIA requests. As in the Adam Walsh murder investigation, the files could be copied and downloaded and sold at a reasonable price to anyone who wanted it. The state police and the FBI should have a time limit within which to complete this.
As I have written about before, in the Walsh investigation Florida newspapers filed a court action to force the Hollywood, Florida PD to open their files to the media. The case had been “open” for 14 years. The court ordered the HPD to copy over 10,000 pages from their files onto microfilm and gave them just under four months to accomplish this. Adam’s father John was worried that release of the files would jeopardize the investigation. He would later agree with his attorney, who said “The only thing that releasing the files might reveal is that Hollywood Police are the biggest bunch of bungling idiots since the Keystone Cops.” Release of the files also revealed the heartbreak of all the things that were NOT done in the case and all the things that were missed. Tears of Rage, John Walsh, Pocket Star Books (1997), p. 277-303.
Maybe the press could take a page from the late Marilyn Wright’s book. She was the investigative journalist with the Traverse City Record-Eagle who figured out, doggedly followed and exposed what was taking place on N. Fox Island and indeed around the country with these sick pedophiles. Her work on this in 1977 and 1978 remains the only real reporting to the public about those crimes.
I will never understand why law enforcement would not take a brave look at this investigation to figure out what went wrong and how such grievous errors can be avoided in the future. In the Yorkshire Ripper/Peter Sutcliffe case, a complex serial murder case involving more than 10 victims, “and the typical ills of investigating an ongoing serial killer case,” the British Parliament conducted a major review critical of the investigative procedures that failed in that case.
[The typical ills of this type of investigation included:] numerous victims, thousands of suspects, poor control and coordination of incoming leads, inexperienced personnel to investigate or supervise, improper media relations, investigations conducted on tangents, ill-conceived procedures in prioritizing investigative leads, and inadequate filing procedures of case materials. The Yorkshire Ripper cases are atypical because the British Parliament conducted a major review critical of the investigative procedures; a procedure unprecedented in U.S. criminal investigations. The product of the review was the discovery of a multitude of investigative errors and the establishment of the HOLMES system, a central repository of case information in major cases. That kind of database goes a long way to solve many of the information disconnects that plague interagency task force investigations, particularly the cases involving serial offenders such as killers and sex offenders.
The Psychology of Serial Killer Investigations, The Grisly Business Unit, Academic Press (2003), p. XV. Sutcliffe was interviewed by police 12 times during his murder spree and let go each time. But officials in that case did not hide the investigative problems and issues under the rug. Why do officials in Michigan get to act like the OCCK never happened? The Michigan State Police should update the public on the status of their investigation and they should move on the tips they have received since the airing of Children of the Snow this past February. Or throw in the towel and open your files so someone who is committed and smart can get after this shit. Many players have died since 1977. Some are still alive. Time is of the essence, even though you appear to just want to run out the clock.
That’s what I think. I am more than willing to be proven wrong. I’m not getting paid to figure this out, or looking for a gold star, or a book or movie deal. I am speaking up because Mark, Jill, Kris and Tim cannot. Let’s just get the to the truth here, after more than four decades and hundreds of thousands of dollars. Who did this, who else was involved and is anyone who participated in the investigation corrupt? Law enforcement’s failure to come clean in this case, make corrections, use the DNA testing methods currently being used consistently and successfully around the country, and their deafening silence defiles the memory of these four kids and society at large.