Earlier this week a reader asked for working links to the June 17 and 18, 2012 series about the OCCK case written by David Ashenfelter for the Detroit Free Press. These papers do not maintain online archives; the links expire. So you have to hit up Newspapers.com ($). I pulled out my hard copy of those papers and reread them.
In an article with the headline “Decades of Despair and Still No Peace,” Ashenfelter observes: “Though it is not uncommon for families in unsolved homicides to become hostile with authorities, it is unusual for them to complain publicly, sue and demand that the investigation be reassigned to another agency.” I’ll tell you what is uncommon. A county as corrupt as Oakland County, Michigan, and a state police force willing to play hide the ball.
In 2012 was this story was still being pitched as cops and prosecutors doing the best they could, bemoaning how their hands are tied, blah, blah, blah; and the families portrayed as simply angry, limited and disappointed–how dare we complain publicly, sue for documents we were entitled to by statute, and demand that the fox no longer guard the henhouse?! Silly people. Get over it.
I received the following encrypted email some seven months ago. The writer expresses the hope that some “longtimers” at Oakland County reach out with information, that others have come forward. They have not. Are you surprised?
I was driving last Wednesday when I heard the news that the three white Georgia men who chased, cornered and killed Ahmaud Arbery were found guilty of felony murder and malice murder (the “youngster” in the group of “citizen arresters”). I felt relief wash over me and a lessening of the stomach and headache I had off and on since that POS, vigilante, man-child Kyle Rittenhouse got acquitted in Wisconsin on November 19, after having his hand held every step of the way by a joke of a judge.
When I read about the verdict online I was reminded that the first prosecutor on the case, Jackie Johnson, has been indicted for violating her oath of office in this case. https://reason.com/2021/11/24/ahmaud-arbery-alleged-murderers-almost-escaped-charges-prosecutorial-misconduct-jackie-johnson-george-barnhill/printer/. In fact, last Wednesday morning former Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney Johnson turned herself at the Glynn County jail and was then released on her own recognizance. She had been indicted a week prior on a felony charge of violating her oath of office and a misdemeanor count of obstructing police. The indictment alleges she used her position to discourage police from making arrests in the killing of 25-year-old Arbery.
In early September I posted about this prosecutor and press about how “historic” it is to have someone even look at the dirty dealings of prosecutors because it is so rare. https://catherinebroad.blog/2021/09/03/. Lack of any oversight of these powerful and sometimes corrupt people, the rarity that another agency will step in and put a stop to prosecutorial abuses, as well as the comfort of bullshit immunity doctrines, means people like Jackie Johnson feel pretty comfortable showing racists favorable treatment (especially if one of them had been an investigator in her office) and mistreating victims’ family members. Had the video taken by one of the convicted defendants in this case not surfaced, you can be sure these three good old boys would have been home eating turkey and all the fixins on Thursday.
I can think of 10 different ways L. Brooks Patterson violated his oath of office and interfered in the investigation in the OCCK case, beginning in late January 1977. There are a few of you complicit enablers who are still walking this earth and know the details. Jessica Cooper took it upon herself to help keep this story hidden. She and her complicit enablers therefore have just as much to lose if the truth bubbles to the surface. These violations are, as described in the reason.com article, an affront to basic liberty. They must be revealed.
In a strange but somewhat similar case, an ex-FBI agent and filmmakers discovered public corruption in LA County in the “unsolved” murder of Brooklyn rapper Notorious B.I.G. https://nypost.com/2021/05/29/ex-fbi-agent-biggie-filmmakers-sealed-court-docs-reveal-killer/ (“The alleged cover-up ‘was the biggest miscarriage of justice in my 20-year career at the FBI,’ said [the ex-FBI agent]. ‘I had evidence that LAPD officers were involved and I was shut down by the LAPD and city attorneys inside Los Angeles.'”).
Keep an eye on the Georgia AG’s case against ex-prosecutor Johnson. Losing an election appears to be the least of her worries. It should not take a viral video of a murder to out a dirty prosecutor. But then again, you folks in Oakland County still worship at the trough created by ex-prosecutor and county executive he-man Patterson. There is no viral video. Just four dead kids and scores of others who were victimized by pedophiles this law and order prosecutor’s office did not dare investigate after Chris Busch walked free.