Category Archives: Missouri

Tom Wilkerson

17553949_1963861050509721_8938791363575964772_nTom Wilkerson was convicted of child abuse (a four swat spanking which he could not have given since he was at work) and tampering with a witness for telling the children to tell the truth. The child accusing him had been dumped out of a prior placement for the exact same allegation. that was not allowed into evidence. Nor were the prior parents allowed to testify about the child’s pathological lying.

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A message from Tom’s daughter, March 31, 2017:

My Father, Thomas Wilkerson, fondly referred to as Tom by hundreds of people, is currently sitting in a tiny prison cell in Jefferson City Correctional Prison. He was put there after he, along with his wife, devoted years of selfless service to the foster care system, fostering severely damaged children for many months at a time, filling them with all the love and attention that a child in the system craves.

Tom’s two biological children have an extremely high regard for him. Tom, always a strong, outdoorsy guy, spent hours building tree houses, zip lines, and rappelling with them as they grew up. He also did this with his foster children. Everyone loves Tom; he is a favorite, and nobody forgets Tom after they meet him even just once.

Tom was forced into a sham trial by the Lincoln County Justice system. (the same system that incarcerated an innocent Russ Faria in a terrifying display of the corruption that fills the Justice system in Lincoln County.) This corruption showed up in Tom’s trial in many forms. Not a single piece of exculpatory evidence was allowed as to Tom’s whereabouts, which would have proven clearly that Tom Wilkerson was not even in the home or with his children when the alleged four-swat spanking occurred. Rather, he was at work, working hard to make a good living for his wife and five adopted children.

Also the evidence that one of the children, in a prior placement, had alleged abuse, and that abuse was then proven false. The child had lied. This evidence was completely omitted from Tom’s trial.

The children chose to keep the Wilkerson’s name after the trial, even though they were told over and over they were allowed to go back to their own prior last name. During supervised and unsupervised visits, they often begged to go back home with the Wilkersons. Evidence of this was withheld during the trial.

The trial itself happened years after the first allegations had been made, giving Lincoln County time to alienate and brainwash the children into the mind-set of abuse. The children had no idea of the gravity of the accusations they were making during the trial. This was due to the fact no doubt, that they had been born with opiates in their system. They had Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, and had been diagnosed with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD). This allows the children to be manipulated and controlled. None of this extremely pertinent information was allowed during Tom’s trial per the prosecutor asking the judge to suppress these details.

During the trial the children often appeared drugged and sleepy. It was apparent they had been given something to make them more pliable. They always looked toward the front row before answering any questions that were asked of them. This witness coaching appeared in full view of Judge Mennemeyer, who also made it clear that she had not read a single one of the 40 letters of character references that she had received before the trial.

The oldest child, who is now 20, was not allowed to come to the trial to testify on Tom’s behalf, after he had repeatedly said that “nothing had happened”. Church Elders, pastors, and friends were also excluded from testifying. The Wilkersons had conveniently NOT been informed by Rod Barnhill, the Deputy Juvenile officer, about the problems the children had developed before they were placed in the Wilkerson’s home: that they were sexual predators This omission by Barnhill was in direct violation of both state and federal law.

This allowed Lincoln County to collect federal money from the Safe Families Act, both when placed with the Wilkerson’s, and when removed. A two-for-one, if you will. Lincoln County has a long history of framing people for the Safe Families Act in order to get federal money. They target people who have low IQ’s, adopted children, or children with mental problems. In short, they target the people who are easily manipulated.

We believe the prosecutor, Leah Askey, and Judge Chris Kunza Mennemeyer colluded to exclude all exculpatory evidence of Tom’s innocence from his trial in order to ensure a guilty verdict and subsequent conviction, therefore padding their own resume, and furthering their respective careers.

The Lincoln County Justice system has become so corrupt that they appear to think themselves above the law. They target the weak, garner federal money from the Safe Families Act, and manipulate and control each trial by the Prosecutor and Judge. The judge is supposed to be the arbiter between the two parties, and not the arm of the prosecution, fixing cases to ensure conviction as was clearly done in Tom Wilkerson’s and Russ Faria’s cases by Leah Askey (currently under investigation by multiple authorities and the Chief disciplinary counsel of the Missouri Bar) and Judge Chris Kunza Mennemeyer (Now under suspension).

We are anxiously waiting for the appellate court of the Eastern District of Missouri to rule on the case that was heard on February 9, 2017. Thank you in advance for your support and help.

[End Message]

Billie Jerome Allen

On March 17, 1997, security guard Richard Heflin was killed during an armed robbery of the Lindell Bank & Trust in St. Louis (Forest Park), Missouri, by two men.

William Green who was a customer at the bank dialled 911 and followed the  getaway van to Forest Park, where it burst into flames ( prior to the robbery the van had been soaked in gasoline ). One of the men, Norris G. Holder, caught fire, and was arrested at the scene by police. The other ran into a wooded area, and was spotted soon after he left the van on the opposite side of the wooded area by city forestry employee Bobby Harris. After making up a story about why the hair on his head was burned, the man convinced Harris and another forestry employee to give him a ride to the nearest Metrolink station.

Billie Jerome Allen was arrested at his girlfriend’s apartment at about 2:00a.m. the next day.  Around 3:00 a.m. Billie was placed in an interrogation room, handcuffed to the table, advised again of his Miranda rights, and allegedly treated for his burns and injuries. Subsequently, Billie was identified by Harris in a lineup and at trial.

It seems like an open and shut case, but allegedly, there is no documentation of Billie being treated for burns and injuries, and the photo lineup shows no bandage or sign he was treated:

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Source: http://www.freebillieallen.com/single-post/2016/03/13/YOU-BE-THE-JUDGE

Both Billie and Holder were found guilty in separate trials, and sentenced to death.

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Jessie McKim

Jessie has been in prison since April 1997 for a murder that never happened.  Attorney Jennifer Bukowsky received a letter from Jessie McKim and was so shocked by this obvious injustice that she has been fighting to correct it – pro bono – ever since.

Experts on both sides agree the victim wasn’t suffocated, she overdosed on meth.

Jessie’s case was heard before the Missouri Court of Appeals- Western District. WD77803. Unfortunately, while the Court of Appeals ultimately agreed with Jessie’s attorney on two important legal issues (which can be used to assist other innocent inmates in bringing petitions for a writ of habeas corpus), the Court unfortunately denied Jessie’s petition.

Their grounds for denial were completely different from the Cole County Circuit Court’s grounds for denial because the Cole County Circuit Court found that the victim overdosed on meth but denied Jessie’s release on the theory that perhaps Jessie caused the overdose.

The Western District Court of Appeals found that would be an improper ground to deny the petition as that issue was never before the jury.

Instead, the Western District Court of Appeals found that despite the uncontroverted medical opinions from six pathologists (including one hired by the Attorney General) that unequivocally agree that Dr. Dix’s opinion was incorrect and inconsistent with the practice of forensic pathology, the Court found that because Dr. Dix did not recant his testimony, there was enough evidence to support a conviction. Unfortunately Dr. Dix is deceased so it is impossible to seek a recantation from him.

Source: http://www.lawbuk.com/free-jessie-mckim/

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Keith Carnes

Keith Carnes was wrongly convicted of murder.

The shooting occurred in a parking lot near 29th Street and Prospect Avenue on October 6, 2003. A few days afterward, Wendy Lockett and Lorraine Morrow were picked up by Kansas City police detectives and were coerced to say that Carnes had committed the crime, even though one of the women saw another man shoot White.

But the women contradicted each other in their testimony. Morrow testified that Carnes was accompanied by a man named Gary Kitchen. Lockett testified that Carnes was with two other men, Mitchell Powell and Damon Rhodes. Each provided different descriptions of how Carnes shot White, with physical and medical evidence in the original case also in conflict. Both witnesses have since said in sworn affidavits that they lied at trial, according to a motion recently filed in Jackson County Circuit Court by Carnes’ attorney, Kent E. Gipson.

New evidence and perjured testimony suggests that Carnes, who is now 46, could not have committed the murder. At least three people say they saw the shooting and that the trigger man wasn’t Carnes; several other persons say they were with Carnes in an apartment at the time of the shooting, including a doorman who kept tabs on each person that entered or exited the building. In a sworn affidavit, the doorman said Carnes remained inside and on the apartment porch during the incident that led to White being shot. Many of these people were available to testify but were never questioned by police, according to the motion.

Source: Article at pitch,com, Dec 2, 2016

Documents:

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Ricky Kidd

Ricky Kidd was convicted of a 1996 double murder, and sentenced to two life sentences without the possibility of parole.

The KC Police Commissioner & former prosecutor Cindy Dodge agree he is innocent.

An eyewitness recanted, and he has an alibi his public defender failed to investigate. He applied for a gun permit at the sheriff’s department on the day of the murders.

Jackson County prosecutors have put up barriers, saying it’s too late, and Kidd missed his chance to properly appeal.

Another man convicted of the murders named his two accomplices, not Kidd.

Video News Report 18 November 2016

Page at Midwest Innocence Project

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Trevin Gamble

Wrongfully Convicted Of Murder Although His Mother & Siblings Swear He Was At Home With Them Doing Time Of Shooting Incident That Took A Young Girls Life

My name is Trevin Gamble. I was wrongfully accused of being involved in a shooting back in 1993 that resulted in a young girl’s life being taken.  The shooting was triggered by a gang rivalry between kids from my neighborhood and the neighborhood several blocks away.

Trevin on a visit with his mother at South Correctional Center

 

I have always maintained my innocence.  I had no involvement in the crime that took place that I have been convicted of, nor did I have any foreknowledge that the events were going to take place.  I was home with my mother and siblings the night of this incident.

I was arrested with 3 older guys from my neighborhood and accused to have been with them when the shooting took place.  Each of my co-defendants were older than I but I believe, because the state did not have a good case against my co-defendants, their plan all along was to use me against them.  One of my co-defendant’s, Kevin Smith, was nearly 20 years old, had served several years in the penitentiary already, and since his release…had been implicated in a number of crimes including murder.  Kevin was who they really wanted.  The police had been wanting to send Kevin back to prison since his release.

There was no physical evidence connecting me to the shooting.  The shooting incident happened at nearly midnight.  I was at home with my mother and siblings, and no where near where the crime I am locked up for took place.  My family members who were present that night all attested to the fact I had not been gone away from the house during the time the shooting allegedly occurred.

The primary evidence used to connect me to the crime was the testimony of a witness that knew me from the neighborhood.  The incident occurred during the wee hours of the night. It was pitch dark and there was bad lighting.  The shooters were allegedly shooting from the shadows of a dark vacant lot which sat approximately 50-60 ft from where the victim was struck.  I am a very dark-skinned individual – there is no way someone could positively identify me from 50 fee away at midnight!  There were approximately 20 people lingering around the street when the shots were fired and none of the witnesses positively identified me as the shooter but the one girl who misidentified me.  Moreover, there were numerous individuals standing out with the victim when the shots were fired.  People that knew me personally, yet none of them placed me on the crime scene.

I have served 22 years of a JLWOP sentence.  Recently the Missouri Supreme Court ruled that the Missouri Board of Probation and Parole has to allow juveniles sentenced to life parole eligibility after serving 25 years.  Recently, the Governor signed this new legislation into law.  As a result of this, I do have some hope of maybe regaining my freedom in the not too distant future.

Nevertheless, I am innocent!!!  I was not involved in the crime I was accused and ultimately convicted of.   I have exhausted my appeals, but not my resolve of proving my innocence.  Currently, I do not have legal representation and my family no longer has funds to help me retain an lawyer.  I am seeking “pro bono” assistance to challenge my case on the basis that I am innocent!

Source

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Michael Politte

Michael Politte was only fourteen years old when he was accused of murdering his mother, Rita Politte. Michael and a friend were asleep in his home on December 5, 1998, when the two boys woke up and discovered that smoke was filling the trailer. Michael and his friend ran out of the room and discovered his mother’s body on fire in the doorway to her bedroom. After the fire was extinguished, police arrived, and suspicion for the crime swiftly shifted to Michael. Interrogated just hours later, Michael never had a moment to grieve his mother, as he’s been fighting for his freedom ever since.

In 2002, Michael was falsely convicted of the crime largely based on unreliable fire-identification methods. At trial, the fire marshal testified, based on a visual examination, that the fire pattern and burn damage on and around the victim indicated that a liquid accelerant had been used. Additionally, an analyst testified that Michael’s shoes tested positive for gasoline, thereby tying the accelerant allegedly found on Michael’s shoes to the accelerant they believed had been used at the crime scene. Michael and his friends had previously been known to fill up their free-time in their small, rural town playing with homemade firecrackers, which the prosecution twisted to imply that Michael would have chosen fire as a means to kill his mother, despite any clear motive.

Michael is innocent. There is no physical evidence connecting him to the crime scene, and MIP has uncovered new evidence regarding the fire science used to convict him. This evidence not only supports Michael’s innocence, but further indicates that Rita’s killer is still free. Although several alternative suspects were at play during the initial investigation of the case, with much greater motive than the victim’s own 14-year old son, none were fully investigated by police. Michael’s release would be the first step to giving Michael, his sisters, and the rest of his family long-awaited closure.

Michael Politte is currently represented by MIP and the law firm of Langdon and Emison.

Source : http://themip.org/

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David Johnson

David Johnson, aged 15, was with  his older brother Matthew Johnson and another man Matthew Marshall who committed a murder at a party on New Year’s eve 2008.

According to the police report, Marshall and Matthew Johnson showed up at the party after a female friend called them because she didn’t like the way she was being treated.

There were over 30 people at the party that night. All of those people were friends with the victim, none of them mentioned David took part in the murder.

Two years later, Marshall accused David in order to get a reduced sentence.

At trial, a witness stated that David was not in the house when the murder took place.

In spite of this, David was convicted.

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Jeffrey Weinhaus

Jeffrey Weinhaus was shot four times by police in September 2012, after resting his hand on a legal gun in the presence of two policemen.

He was subsequently found guilty of assaulting a law enforcement officer, armed criminal action and of possessing marijuana.

Article : Journalist Jeffrey Weinhaus: Why Was He Shot And Jailed?

Video at Copblock.org

US Supreme Court Filing June 5, 2015

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Michael Amick

Michael Amick was wrongly convicted for the 2008 murder of Leona Vaughan, his grandmother-in-law, at her daughter Jackie Risner’s home in Myrtle, in southern Missouri, and the fire that destroyed the home after the murder. Vaughan had been shot six times in the head. On June 16, 2015, the conviction was overturned.

During the three full days of testimony, the jury heard from more than a dozen witnesses on both sides of the case, mostly in favor of the defendant, placing him at several locations in the Myrtle area at the time of the Risner home fire.

One witness, Risner’s neighbor, Jake Mayberry, who was 19 at the time of the murder, testified he saw Amick’s pickup truck at the Risner home about 15 minutes before seeing smoke coming from the house. Mayberry’s description of Amick’s truck as a silver extended-cab rather than a pewter crew-cab pickup was a critical point of contention for Amick’s defense team.

Mayberry admitted smoking marijuana sometime in the month before Vaughan’s death, although not that morning. Several times during the trial and during closing arguments, defense attorney Dee Wampler said Mayberry was “too high on pot” to identify Amick’s truck.

“This guy’s brain deserves to be in the Smithsonian when he dies,” Wampler said of Mayberry.

Missouri Assistant Attorney General Kevin Zoellner of Jefferson City, who served as prosecutor alongside Oregon County Prosecutor Fred O’Neill, accused the defense of fraud for producing a photo of a similar pickup truck, presumably to trick Mayberry into identifying it as Amick’s truck.

Linda Amick testified that her son did not benefit from Vaughan’s death. She named several people in the community that she said did benefit by Vaughan’s death, saying they were dealing in large quantities of drugs from California, and Vaughan likely confronted them about the drugs.

Source: News report on the trial July 6, 2011

Appeal

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Documents ( see also discussion group documents )

Document on alleged Perjury by Deputy King | Brief 31 December 2014

News

24 May 2014 Jake Mayberry charged for a driving-related offense

16 June 2015 Conviction overturned
“In that trial, the judge excused a juror for health reasons after the jury had already begun deliberations. That juror was replaced with an alternate juror that had already been excused and had gone home.”

29 November 2016 Detailed article at The Reporters.org

1 December 2016, Found Not Guilty after retrial.

 

Charles Erikson

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Charles wrongly confessed to a murder, implicating his friend Ryan Ferguson. Ryan has been freed after a coerced witness recanted, it’s ridiculous that Charles remains in prison.

The link to serial killer Edward Wayne Edwards :

“November 1, 2001 Kent Heithholt found murdered in Columbia, Missouri. The next day Edwards blogs about the murder at ZodiacKiller.com, and references the murder of “CJB” ( Cheryl Jo Bates) 35 years earlier.”

Source: Edward Wyane Edwards Timeline

Rodney Lincoln

A case of extremely doubtful identification by children of the victim. In 2010 the Midwest Innocence Project (MIP) paid to have DNA testing conducted on the hair and other hairs found at the scene. That testing proved that the only physical evidence used against Rodney at trial could NOT have come from him.

Oral arguments in the Missouri Appeals Court 18 November, 2014

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News

November 28, 2015: Melissa DeBoer recants: “Rodney Lincoln did NOT kill my mom. He did not attempt to kill my sister and I. It was Tommy Lynn Sells. When the veil fell from my eyes I was horrified. I have kept an innocent man in prison for 34 years.. I did not know I was wrong but I was.. and realizing it is so painful. When I saw a picture of Tommy Lynn Sells, I had a horrible, horrible feeling. And when I think about that terrible night, I now see how I could have gotten mixed up. This is all I can really say right now.”

Witness to mother’s 1982 murder in St. Louis says imprisoned man didn’t do it 18 March 2016