On May 1, 2008 Richard and Brenda Kowalski were found dead at their Livingston County home in rural Michigan. Both had been shot. In the 911 call, their adult son named his uncle, Jerome Kowalski, as a suspect.
Jerome was addicted to alcohol, and after being questioned by police began to think it was possible he committed the crime but didn’t remember. When he was told the murder weapon was a 0.38 gun rather than the 9mm gun he owned, he realised he couldn’t have done it.
Lead detective Sean Furlong started accusing Jerome’s sons of committing the murders. Jerome denied it. Furlong then threatened to bring them in for questioning.
Jerome claimed he didn’t want his sons to go through what he was going through, so he finally gave police a signed confession.
At trial, forensic pathologist Werner Spitz testified the time of death was in the middle of the night, when Jerome was working security at a military base.
Jerome’s attorneys expected to get the confession thrown out, but this was denied by Livingston County District Court Judge Theresa Brennan, who also refused to allow an expert on false confessions to testify, calling the expert witness “unreliable and irrelevant.”
However, Brennan was having an affair with the lead detective, failed to recuse herself and lied about the affair. She has now been removed from office by the Michigan Supreme Court, and pleaded guilty to a charge of perjury ( other charges were dropped ).
Jerome’s attorneys have requested a false confession expert be allowed to testify at the new trial, scheduled to take place in January. Shiawassee County Circuit Court Judge Matthew Stewart will rule on the motions on December 17, 2019. The retrial is set for January 20, 2020.
Excellent 3-part documentary ( with transcripts ) here: https://truecrimedaily.com/2017/06/07/judge-detective-love-affair-could-derail-double-murder-conviction/
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