Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Jennifer #Cusworth trial begins for 1993 murder.


A FATHER four  has begun his trial for the 1993 murder of a gorgeous 19-year-old college student.
Jennifer Cusworth's battered body was found the night after she had attended a huge house party near her home in Kelowna, Canada.
But despite the length of time, cops refused to give up on catching their killer, taking over 230 DNA samples since her death and now they finally believe have their man.
Neil Snelson, a local Christian musician, who is actively involved in the First Lutheran Church and apparently matches DNA samples found at the scene.

Terry and Jean Cusworth stopped putting up a Christmas tree the year their daughter was murdered vowing 16 years ago they would hold off on their annual tradition until there was an arrest in Jennifer’s case.

Last year a tree went up.

Terry said: “It was quite emotional. We don’t have all the answers of course but we have a lot of them that we didn’t have before.”
Snelson, 43, a married father of four has denied the killing and his defenders plan to argue evidence admissibility before a judge over the next two weeks.
A jury will also be selected for the trial is expected to last for four weeks.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

#WM3 : Advanced criminal law blog on the West Memphis 3

#WM3 . West Memphis Three on 48 Hours - Mr. Bojangles ?

Snippet from article on Mr.Bojangles..

......First, there was the possible African-American man who was seen by employees of a local Bojangles’ restaurant on the evening of the crime at the restaurant. The restaurant was located near the bayou in Robin Hood Hills where the bodies of the three boys were found.

The black man was reportedly dazed, covered with blood and mud, and went into the ladies restroom. The employees called the police who responded to the call but did not fuly check out the information. The following day the restaurant’s manager called the police a second time when the bodies of the young boys were found, operating on the premise there may be a connection between the two events. This time the police took blood scrapings from the walls of the restaurant’s restroom but it was later carelessly lost or deliberately destroyed. No one knows for sure.

Supporters for the West Memphis Three labeled the bloody African-American man as “Mr. Bojangles”—a moniker reminiscent of the Old South. Contrary to what some of the West Memphis Three supporters believe, I don’t think the local police deliberately destroyed the “Mr. Bojangles” evidence just so they could convict three local white teenagers for this unspeakable crime.

If the police even remotely believed the mysterious black Mr. Bojangles was connected with the murder of three white kids, they would have devoted every law enforcement resource in the State of Arkansas to make a case against him (or any black man they could ‘frame” as him).


#WM3: John Wayne Hobbs vs John Mark Byers.

John] Mark Byers has recently come out in favor of the innocence of those in prison. He has said he has helped perform undercover work, making tapes of his conversations with Terry Hobbs. He has made some remarkable allegations about Hobbs past. The supporting evidence for these allegations have yet to appear. (http://www.jivepuppi.com/Terry_Hobbs.html,


#WM3 : Terry Wayne Hobbs 'the other stepfather'

#WM3 : Terry Wayne Hobbs (Video) and some interesting questions for Mr.Hobbs.

#WM3 : Byers vs Hobbs

#WM3: The West Memphis Three - EXHIBITS 1 - 500

#WM3: The West Memphis Three: GUILTY? Explain why...

#WM3: Damien Echols statement on plea deal.

#WM3 : The West Memphis Three - Official blog..

#WM3: The West Memphis Three- Rumours and Confessions.

#WM3: The West Memphis Three...Guilty or Innocent...?


As though part of a morbid Grimm's tale, three eight-year-old boys headed into the woods at the setting of the sun. And with the last of daylight, they disappeared. What happened then was unspeakable.

This site is dedicated to the brief lives of Steve Branch, Christopher Byers and Michael Moore. These pages are dedicated to finding the truth about their deaths in West Memphis, Arkansas that took place on or about May 5th, 1993.

    The gruesomeness of the crime made it sensational nationwide news. With the subsequent arrests and trials and the allegations of occult sacrifice the notoriety increased. The media followed the story with countless reports and articles. The story became the fodder of Geraldo and Maury Povich.

Three teenagers were charged with the crimes. Each pleaded innocent. After a pair of trials remarkable in their strangeness, each was convicted. But the story didn't end there. Through two books and two documentaries, websites, multiple episodes of TV true crime shows, and the interest of prominent and famous people the convicted have achieved a celebrity status as "The West Memphis Three."

In this case there are unhealed wounds as deep as those made on the victims. For those who believe in the innocence of the convicted, there is the belief in an ongoing injustice and that the actual murderer has gone free. For those who believe in the guilt of the convicted, the unceasing publicity of the convicted steals the focus from the victims. This is especially true for the families of the victims who live with the constant memory of the pain of the tragedy. This log is dedicated to the community of all of those touched by this crime.


#WM3 : The West Memphis Three...Images then and now...

#WM3: The West Memphis Three - Notorious murder

#WM3 : Why I believe the West Memphis Three are guilty...

A bloggers thoughts from 2005

I’ve already written in this post about my change from goofy-haired political activist to slightly-less-goofy-haired writer, and how that has affected my view of the West Memphis 3. One thing I noted in that post is that it is hard to find any websites that lay out the case against the teens. That's what this post is for: an entry level explanation of why people think the three are guilty. Sort of the opposite of the front page of this West Memphis 3 site.

I should point out that, along with this invaluable website, I learned a lot about the case reading the arguments on this website and this website. Even though the discussions on the two boards can sometimes read like a transcript of the Crips/Bloods Summer Picnic, there’s also a lot of information to absorb.

Just in case you've never heard of the West Memphis 3, here's the case in a nutshell: Three young boys were murdered in West Memphis, Arkansas. After a teen named Jessie Misskelley confessed to the crime, he and two other teens, Damien Echols and Jason Baldwin, were found guilty in two separate trials. After an HBO documentary called Paradise Lost was aired which cast doubt on the verdict, a large number of people, including many musicians, began clamoring for their release. The supporters’ claims generally state that Misskelley's confession was coerced and that local authorities focused on Damien Echols due to his creepy "Goth" persona. While the conviction has survived multiple courts and appeals, public support (especially on the Internet) still maintains the trio's innocence.

Parents Just Don’t Understand

Myth: Damien Echols was a "troubled outcast" targeted for his long hair by dumb yokels who thought heavy metal equaled Satanism.

Truth: Damien Echols was seriously mentally ill.

Many supporters like to use the line "This could have happened to any of us," as if the government was going after metal fans and Wiccans with the same vigor they pursued Communism in the ‘50s.

This is an especially attractive myth for people who like to think that a funny hairstyle or black clothing is a valid form of rebellion that the Man needs to quash (“Mabel, I saw a t-shirt today that said ‘Goddess Bless.’ I’m votin’ Green Party from now on.”) But, while lots of people might have been outcasts in high school, but they probably didn't:

*Stay in a mental hospital, where a doctor listed “extreme physical aggression towards others” as one of the problems.
*Threaten to attack their parents.
*Tell a therapist that drinking blood gives them power.
*Suck the blood out of a wound in front of detention officials
*Kill and mutilate a dog (this is supported by police reports from both an eyewitness to the mutilation and someone who found the dog's corpse. A dog's skull was also found in Damien's room after his arrest).
*Receive full disability from the government for mental problems.

And, in the unlikely event that all of that is true about you, guess what: you might be a murder suspect some day. Folks complain that the “rumor mill” convicted Echols before his arrest. Can you wonder why? You don’t need to believe in a vast satanic conspiracy to see the boy ain’t quite right.

Let’s talk about forced confessions, shall we?

The Many Confessions of Jessie Miskelly
No one would argue that Jessie’s conviction kept him from a life of a Rhodes scholar. Nit-picky arguments will break out on occasion on what exactly to label Misskelley: Retarded? Borderline Retarded? I’m going to simplify the whole thing by call him what he definitely is: a dipshit. His lawyer says that Jessie liked to shatter Coke bottles with his fist to show how tough he was. So, dipshit it is.

Was Jessie’s confession coerced? If you define “coercion” the way most people think of it (say, the way they got confessions during the Inquisition), then the answer is a definite “no.” Despite what some sources state, Jessie was not browbeaten for 12 hours without parental consent. He made his first incriminating statement after a few hours in custody, and his father knew exactly where he was.

But, according to a sociologist who testified (mostly out of the jury’s earshot) for Miskelly, these few hours of questioning were enough to make Jessie snap and begin lying to his own detriment. Dr. Richard Ofshe, the sociologist in question, said the police’s questioning techniques helped to get a false confession. Ofshe has published several papers that argue that modern interrogation techniques are psychologically overbearing and should be thrown out. Police, who solve somewhere around 80% of the major crimes they close through confessions, would argue that the relatively small number of false confessions aren’t worth losing the crimes they solve. (I haven’t found any hard data that can say what percentage of confessions are “false,” if anyone out there knows, please leave a comment).

So, the question becomes: how much protection from the law do dipshits deserve?

Jessie, by the way, didn’t confess just once. He confessed twice on tape, once after his conviction. He also confessed to some guards at one point and perhaps even to a friend before his arrest. Jessie, some folks say, is easily led, but during his second confession, you can hear his attorneys pleading with him not to confess. He does so anyway. So, he’s got a little backbone.

The other big problem people have with Jessie’s confession is its discrepancies from facts. This can be a little troubling. But here’s the thing: as we established, Jessie is a dipshit. Not only that, but, according to his second taped confession, Jessie drank enough Evan Williams to make himself sick the night of the murder (a statement with some evidence behind it, I might add). Maybe you’ve never drank Evan Williams. It’s not exactly a sippin’ whiskey. So, let’s perform a test. Drink enough E.W. to make you vomit and then play a game of Memory. How’d you do?

Circumstantial Evidence is Okay

Hard evidence, like a videotape of the crime being committed, is like a prefab house that the prosecutors can just move into right away. Circumstantial evidence is a brick. Sure, you can point at a brick and yell, “That’s not a house,” and you’d be right on, Braniac. But you can still build a house with bricks. Let’s lay some, shall we:

Jessie Misskelley’s many confessions
Damien’s pre-arrest hinting that he’d been involved in the murder
The girls who testified that they heard Damien confess
Jason Baldwin’s jailhouse confession
Damien’s mental illness
Secondary fiber evidence
Two types of blood on Damien’s necklace
Shaky alibis
Jessie’s weeping spells right after the murders
The knife found behind Baldwin’s house

That’s a big pile of bricks. While you might be able to destroy a few of them (I find Baldwin’s “jailhouse confession” to be a little suspect myself), there’s still a lot of evidence pointing to the trio. This is where Occam’s Razor comes into play. You can choose to believe all this evidence is the result of perjurers, corrupt evidence-planting cops, incompetent judges, yokels too dumb to think for themselves, cruel interrogators, coincidence and prejudice. Or you can believe that the West Memphis 3 are guilty. Remember, don’t make assumptions you don’t have to make.

This is not the full story … if you want to learn more, you should by going to the message boards linked to above. But, as WM3 awareness day rolls around, you might be tempted to give some money to the cause. You’d better be sure that your money isn't going to child murders. Are you?

Saturday, August 20, 2011

#WM3 : West Memphis Three : The victims, many times forgotten...and a bloody necklace matching defendant and victim NOT produced as evidence in the trial .

The victims
The victims.  Left to right, Christopher Byers, Michael Moore and Stevie Branch.

(3) On the afternoon of March 15, 1994, after Court had recessed for the day, the State was informed at approximately 4:30 p.m. by representatives of Genetic Design in North Carolina that they had received a result which would be consistent with the blood of both the defendant Charles Jason Baldwin and the victim Steve Branch. 

#WM3 : The Memphis Three - Crime scene or dump site ?

#WM3: The memphis Three- The bloody necklace not used as evidence in the trial ?

(1) I am a licensed and practicing attorney in the State of Arkansas.  I am the duly elected Prosecuting Attorney of the Second Judicial District to represent the State of Arkansas in this matter now pending before the Court.

(2) It is my recollection that on March 11, 1994, prior to the State resting its case, the Prosecuting Attorney's Office advised defense counsel that, on the previous evening, it had discovered the possibility that blood was present on a necklace worn by separate defendant Damien Wayne Echols at the time of his arrest and that the necklace had been sent to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory.  The Prosecuting Attorney's Office further advised defense counsel at that time that the serologist from the State Crime Laboratory, Kermit Channell, had informed the State that there was blood on the necklace and, at the State's request, he would send the necklace to Genetic Design for further testing to determine whether there was any evidentiary value of the blood found thereon.  This information was made known to the defense and to the Court prior to the State resting.

(3) On the afternoon of March 15, 1994, after Court had recessed for the day, the State was informed at approximately 4:30 p.m. by representatives of Genetic Design in North Carolina that they had received a result which would be consistent with the blood of both the defendant Charles Jason Baldwin and the victim Steve Branch.  The representatives of Genetic Design informed the State that they could conduct an additional test to try to determine which person the blood came from.  Thereafter, the State attempted to contact the attorneys for each defendant to notify them of this development and to discuss a possible one-day continuance in the matter.  After unsuccessfully attempting to contact the attorneys for each defendant, the Court was contacted because of the problem of notification of the jury in the event a continuance was granted.

(4) On March 17, 1994, the Court reconvened and, at that time, the State advised the Court of the results, having previously advised defense counsel of the test results.  It is my recollection that an in-camera off-the-record hearing was held in chambers wherein defense attorneys for both defendants, the prosecutors, and the Judge were present.  The Judge stated at that time that he was inclined to grant the Motion for Mistrial as to the defendant Baldwin and to sever the cases if the new evidence was allowed in.  A hearing was conducted before the Court as a result of the defense objections to the introduction
of said evidence, and after arguments of counsel, the Court declared a recess prior to making his ruling.

(5) During the recess, the Court summoned the attorneys for the State and informed them of his ruling.  As the Court was informing the representatives of the State of his ruling, the attorneys for the defendant Baldwin entered the room, at which time the Court completed stating his ruling.  No actual conversation or discussion took place other than the Court advising the attorneys for the State of his ruling.  Attorneys for the defendant Baldwin were aware of the circumstances of the Court informing the attorneys for the State of his ruling and had an opportunity to make a record if they objected to this procedure and declined to do so.


#WM3: The Memphis Three - LINKS to discussion boards.

#WM3 : West Memphis Three - Chronology of Events.

#WM3: Crime Scene Photos...

#WM3: West Memphis Three Case: Documented Archives...

Friday, August 19, 2011

#WM3: West Memphis Three set free...

#WM3: The West Memphis Three Hoax...

I am posting these links for people who have not heard of this case and wish to understand about the trial, the murders and why three young men were released from prison today.


#WM3: The Truth about the West Memphis Three

The West Memphis Three Were Guilty

On May 5, 1993, Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley and Jason Baldwin (ages 18, 17 & 16 at the time) killed Michael Moore, Steve Branch and Christopher Byers (all age 8). They beat them with fists, then beat them sticks, hogtied them, sexually assaulted them, tortured Branch and Byers with a knife, cut off Byers’ genitals, then dumped their bodies in a ditch.

Maybe you watched Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills and came away convinced that the WM3 were victims of a gross miscarriage of justice. Maybe you then read Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three by Mara Leveritt, or browsed some “Free the WM3″ websites, or heard a celebrity proclaiming the WM3′s innocence, or saw a TV documentary proclaiming their innocence, and became further convinced.

Guess what, you’ve been lied to. You’ve been scammed. Paradise Lost is an outstanding piece of propaganda — turning thugs who raped, tortured and killed second-graders into beloved folk heroes is no mean feat — but it’s not an accurate account of the case. All the pro-WM3 books, websites, TV shows and celebrity testimonials just rehash Paradise Lost‘s original misinformation.
The standard pro-WM3 story goes: Police couldn’t find the real killers, so they decided to frame some local weird kids. Echols, Baldwin and Misskelley were targeted because they looked different, dressed in black, listened to heavy metal music and read Stephen King novels. The cops bullied a mentally retarded kid into making a false confession. There was no evidence tying Echols, Baldwin and Misskelley to the crime. The Bible Belt community was swept up in “Satanic panic”, and the investigation and trial were a modern-day witch hunt.

That story is 100% bullshit. Misskelley, Echols and Baldwin were not arrested because of they way they looked, or the way they dressed, or the way they acted, or the music they listened to, or the books they read, or the beliefs they espoused — Misskelley, Echols and Baldwin were arrested because they were murderers. The police found the murderers through solid police work, and prosecutors built an honest case against them. Two juries unanimously found them guilty because they were obviously guilty.

But what about the “Free the WM3″ movement? Would thousands of supporters still be rallying, donating money, proclaiming the WM3′s innocence 18 years later if they weren’t really innocent? And what about the celebrity supporters? Could Henry Rollins, Natalie Maines, Eddie Vedder, Johnny Depp, Metallica, Disturbed, L7, Trey Parker, Jack Black, Winona Ryder, Will Ferrell, Robert Smith, Patti Smith, Marilyn Manson, Shepard Fairey, Tom Waits, Clive Barker, Peter Straub, Margaret Cho, Dan “The Outlaw” Hardy, Patton Oswalt, Sarah Silverman, Axl Rose, Iggy Pop, Steve Earle, Hank Williams III, Chuck D, Mandy Moore and Demi Lovato all be wrong?

Yes, all those people are wrong. The West Memphis Three were guilty.
Lately supporters have been touting “new DNA evidence that exonerates the WM3″. More bullshit. The case against Echols, Baldwin and Misskelley is overwhelming, and the “new evidence” doesn’t pass the smell test.

The goal of wm3truth.com

A few people already know this case inside out. Partisans have spent nearly two decades furiously debating the case in online forums, divided between “supporters” (who think the WM3 were innocent) and “nons” (non-supporters who think the WM3 were guilty). The old-timers will find little new here.

A much larger number of people have a casual familiarity with the case, primarily from watching Paradise Lost and hearing WM3 supporters talk about the case. Many just assume the WM3 were innocent because that’s the only story they hear. Many might be tempted to donate money to the “free the WM3″ movement because it sounds like a good cause.

This site is addressed to that latter group. It aims to present the real case against the West Memphis Three and to debunk the misinformation spread by WM3 supporters.

Don’t take my word for it. This case is one of the most thoroughly documented criminal cases ever, thanks to the excellent case archive at callahan.8k.com. If you prefer to read up on your own, start there.

Or you could read Blood of Innocents, a true crime book about the case published in 1995, the year before Paradise Lost came out. It’s not very well written, but it’s mostly accurate.


#WM3: The West Memphis Three.....

I have only recently heard about this crime, so to be fair am placing both sides of the argument so I may understand and others also . ONLY when I know all of the facts will I decide if in my mind the three men released today were innocent or guilty.

The victims are

Chris Bryers

Stevie Branch

Michael Moore.... all three were aged just eight years old.

#WM3:West Memphis Three Released

#WM3: Paradise Lost...

#WM3 leave prison with all belongings sources say they are not expected back..

Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley, Jr. have been taken from their cells in the Arkansas Department of Correction and are being transported to Jonesboro, for tomorrow’s hearing. An official of the ADC reported that they left with all their belongings, which is unusual and suggests that they are not expected back. This is the first time all three have left prison together.

I am in Jonesboro now and rumors are flying. It appears that an agreement has been reached between prosecutors and defense attorneys. However, I believe some media reports that have already been released are inaccurate.
Negotiations have been complex. An agreement, if one is approved in court tomorrow, will likely be complex too. Please remember how wild speculation distorted the start of this case. If a possible end is in sight, I hope that the next several sensitive hours will not also be marred—nor jeopardized—by a frenzy of speculation and rumors.

#WM3 : West Memphis three hearing...

THE WEST MEMPHIS THREE: Echols, Misskelley and Baldwin in current Brian Chilson photos.
  • THE WEST MEMPHIS THREE: Echols, Misskelley and Baldwin in current Brian Chilson photos.

Big news is expected in circuit court in Jonesboro Friday morning when Judge David Laser holds a hearing — just announced today — on the West Memphis Three case. Families of defendants and victims are expected to be in court, suggesting far more than routine procedural matters are at hand.

None of the interested parties are talking (lawyers are gagged), beyond saying that those interested in the case will want to be present. But I began making calls early this morning when I received a tip from a local attorney predicting earth-shaking developments, now believed to be release of the defendants in return for pleas to reduced charges, perhaps done in a way that the defendants can still maintain their innocence.

The facts are well-known. Damien Echols, who is on Death Row, and Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley Jr., who are serving life sentences, were convicted in the 1993 slaying of three West Memphis children — Christopher Byers, Stevie Branch and Michael Moore. The trials, though marred by bogus claims of Satanism and shoddy investigative tactics, had withstood appeals until recent developments allowed examination of DNA evidence. To date, none of the DNA gathered in the case has matched any of the defendants. That doesn't exonerate them, but it was powerful new evidence that they weren't involved in the crime. Strong new evidence also was introduced about potential jury misconduct, specifically improper consideration of a statement made by one of the defendants. All that prompted the Arkansas Supreme Court to order a new evidentiary hearing to see whether the defendants were entitled to a new trial. Judge Laser was assigned to hear the case. The previous judge, David Burnett, now is a state senator.

The evidentiary hearing was scheduled for December. The surprise hearing tomorrow alone suggests a major development is at hand. The buzz in the defense bar community is that the news is beyond major. Until now, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel's office has fought vigorously against new proceedings for the defendants and in support of their convictions. A development tomorrow in which he joined in a defense suggestion would be momentous, indeed. Freedom for the WM3? The speculation today includes that possibility, though questions are numerous about how you'd reach such an outcome and, if it were to happen, whether it would include pronouncements on guilt or innocence or state liability.

The judge's office released this statement about Friday's hearing:

The court will take up certain matters pertaining to the cases of defendants Baldwin, Echols and Misskelley on Friday, August 19. One session will be conducted out of public presence with all defendants present and another session will be conducted in open court. The session conducted in chambers will likely begin at 10 a.m. followed by a public session which will begin about 11 a.m. Space will be limited for the public session — first to the parties, counsel and court personnel, then to family members of the victims and family members of defendants with remaining seating to be occupied by media representatives and the public. There will be approximately 15 minutes between the chamber session and open session for media and public to be seated. Miss Stephanie Harris, Arkansas Supreme Court communication counsel, will be present on Friday to assist with implementation and will be the court's intermediary with public and press.

Mara Leveritt, our senior editor who's done groundbreaking reporting and who wrote the book "Devil's Knot" about the case, will be in Jonesboro for tomorrow's hearing. She has a subscription website at her homepage link for more reporting.

Here's the link to video of an Jan. 2011 interview Times reporter David Koon conducted with Jason Baldwin at Tucker Max.

UPDATE: An Arkansas Correction Department spokesman confirms that the three defendants left the prison's Super Max unit today in the custody of Craighead County officers for the hearing. The spokesman says the inmates took all their possessions with them. She said inmates leaving with all possessions was "unusual," but not unprecedented. She said it was the first time all three of the defendants had left the prison together since their incarceration.

Scott Ellington, now prosecutor in the case, will be in court tomorrow, but is also gagged, a spokesman said in response to a question about whether he still favored fighting to keep the convictions in place. Actions by McDaniel and Ellington both have political tentacles. McDaniel is to run for governor in 2014. Ellington has been weighing a race for Congress next year.

UPDATE II: A Memphis TV station reports that it has had sources confirm that an agreement has been reached that would produce the release of two of the three defendants, but hasn't yet provided other details. Our sources continue to indicate the deal covers all three defendants and that one discussion included the state agreeing to the motion for a new trial in return for an agreement from defendants to plead to charges that would qualify them for release for time served. By still having a conviction — a prospect the staunchest WM3 defenders can't stomach — the defendants would be unable to seek damages for false imprisonment or to participate in profits from books or movies about the case. A common plea bargain tactic is to allow a nolo contendere, or no contest plea, to a criminal charge, which is a way of getting a conviction without an admission of guilt. But it would be highly unusual 18 years after a conviction.

UPDATE III: Jackie Byers, wife of the stepfather of one of the victims, tells the Commercial Appeal that she's happy about the plea deal, though she's sorry it will include some sort of admission by the three to something they didn't do. Steven Branch, father of one of the victims, is not happy about the apparent deal, however, and is telling TV stations in Memphis about it. He views the deal as releasing the defendants in return for admission of guilt. The proceeding isn't likely to unfold exactly that way.


#PatBrown: Booked banned by #AMAZON

#BreeannRodriguez: Motive unclear in death of 3-year-old toddler.

Published August 17, 2011 | Associated Press

SENATH, Mo. – As the small Missouri town of Senath prepares to say goodbye to Breeann Rodriguez, police are trying to determine what allegedly drove a neighbor to suffocate the 3-year-old girl.

Breeann's body was found in a remote floodway about eight miles from the family home in Senath, a town of 1,500 residents in far southeastern Missouri. Her funeral is scheduled for Saturday afternoon at the Senath Church of Christ.

A Missouri State Highway Patrol officer searching by boat found the body Tuesday on the bank of a wide drainage ditch, Julie Crowder of the Dunklin County Sheriff's Department said Wednesday.

"We are saddened to confirm our fears but glad we have been able to recover her for her parents," Sheriff Bob Holder said in a statement. He was out of the office and unavailable for comment Wednesday.

Breeann, who weighed about 30 pounds and wore her dark hair in pigtails, had been the subject of a frantic search since her parents reported her missing on Aug. 6. She was last seen riding her small pink bike with training wheels in front of the family home on Ode Johnson Street.

A week after her disappearance, a neighbor from the same street, Shawn Morgan, 43, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder, armed criminal action and tampering with evidence. A probable cause statement said Morgan confessed to finding the girl standing on the ladder at the pool in his yard, grabbed her and took her inside the house, where he suffocated her with a white plastic trash bag.

Morgan told investigators he "felt like it took an hour for the girl to die," according to the statement.

What wasn't clear was why he allegedly did it. Crowder said Morgan did not disclose a motive.

"It's all a mystery," she said.

Morgan made a brief court appearance Tuesday but did not enter a plea. He is due back on court for arraignment on Aug. 30. He is jailed without bond and does not yet have an attorney. Phone messages left on his home phone were not returned.

Crowder said authorities are taking precautions to ensure Morgan's safety. "Put it this way: He went to court in a bulletproof vest," she said.

Neighbors who also live on Ode Johnson Street described Breeann as a quiet, happy girl, always outside tagging along with her brothers, always on her pink bike.

"I've seen her riding that bicycle up and down the street so many times," said Ronnie Newman, 66. "She would wave as she'd pass by. This street is always full of kids."

Newman said his own son went to high school with Morgan. He said Morgan is married with three children ranging in age from about 8 to about 14. He works at a factory in Paragould, Ark., Newman said.

Neighbors described Morgan as quiet but not standoffish. Estelle Floyd, 90, said he comes from a good family and she was not aware of Morgan being in trouble before.

Newman said FBI agents and police knocked on doors throughout the neighborhood at around 2 a.m. Aug. 7, the day after Breeann went missing, then searched the homes. The next morning, as neighbors were gathering to talk about the search, Morgan joined them, he said.

"He came down and talked to us, talking like nothing was going on," Newman said. "We were all wondering how somebody could do something like that, and he was saying the same thing."

Neighbors said the Rodriguez family is friendly but reserved.

"I would see her (Breeann) out in the yard all the time," said next-door neighbor Sharon Haddock, a retiree in her 60s. "She was such a sweet little girl. It's just so tragic."

Floyd said that if such a crime can happen in Senath, it can happen anywhere.

"All I can say is everybody be careful and watch your children," she said.

#BreeannRodriguez: The funeral for three year old Breeann will be held on Saturday

Wednesday, August 17, 2011 ~ Updated 10:03 AM
The Associated Press

SENATH, Mo. (AP) -- Funeral arrangements are now set for Breeann Rodriguez, the 3-year-old Missouri girl allegedly suffocated by her neighbor.

Visitation will be at 1 p.m. Saturday at Senath Church of Christ Church with a funeral to follow at 4 p.m. at the church. Burial is at Senath Cemetery.

The girl was reported missing on Aug. 6. A man who lives on the same street in Senath, Shawn Morgan, was arrested Saturday and charged with first-degree murder. He allegedly confessed to suffocating Breeann with a plastic bag after finding her near his backyard swimming pool.

A spokeswoman for the Dunklin County Sheriff's Department says Morgan did not say why he killed the girl. Her body was found Tuesday near a series of drainage ditches a few miles outside of Senath.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

#RebeccaZahau: her death does NOT look like a suicide...

#BreeannRodriguez :Body of missing 3-year-old found near Hornersville

BreeAnn Rodriguez

Updated: 10:10 p.m., Aug. 16

DUNKLIN COUNTY, Mo. -- In a release from the Dunklin County Prosecuting
Attorney's Office, Dunklin County Sheriff Bob Holder, Senath Police
Chief Omar Karnes, and Dunklin County Prosecuting Attoreny Stephen P.
Sokoloff have confirmed that law enforcement officers working the
investigation of the disappearance of 3-year-old BreeAnn Rodriguez have
located what are believed to be the child's remains near the floodway
ditches northeast of Hornersville, Mo., approximately eight miles
southeast of her home in Senath, Mo.

According to the officials, her remains were located by an officer of
the Missouri State Highway Patrol Water Patrol, who was searching by

Shortly after the discovery, authorities notified the child's parents,
Edgar Rodriguez and Claudia Ramos, that her body was found.

"We appreciate all the help and support from the community in what has
been a difficult time for all," Holder said. "We are saddened to confirm
our fears, but glad we have been able to recover her for her parents."

Rodriguez and her bicycle disappeared near her home on Ode Johnson Street just over a week ago.

On Saturday, Aug. 13, authorities announced Shawn Morgan, 43, of Ode
Johnson Street in Senath, had been arrested in connection to the
disappearance and death of the child.

On Monday, Aug. 15, a probable cause of death affidavit was released relating to the young child's death.

According to the affidavit, on Friday, Aug. 12, authorities conducted an
interview with Shawn Morgan, 43, of Senath, who stated on the day the
child went missing, he discovered her standing on the ladder at the pool
in his backyard. Morgan said he went to the girl, grabbed her, and
carried her inside his house, where he used a white plastic trash bag to
suffocate her, by holding it over her face and mouth.

Shawn Morgan

The affidavit continues, adding Morgan then stated he placed the child's
body in the same trash bag, drove to the floodway ditches at Highway
164, and disposed of her by throwing her over the railing. Morgan added
that upon returning to his residence, he dismantled the bicycle that
Rodriguez had been riding, and disposed of it in the same river system.
Morgan has been charged with the felony counts of First Degree Murder,
Armed Criminal Action and Tampering with Physical Evidence. He made his
first court appearance earlier today (Tuesday).

During his arraignment, Judge John Spielman read the charges against
Morgan, and inquired about counsel. Morgan said he had not yet acquired
an attorney.

A hearing was scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2011, to allow Morgan time to acquire an attorney.

Morgan is currently being held at the Dunklin County Justice Center with no bond.

#BreeannRodrguez: Police have found remains believed to be those of the three year old toddler.

Late Breaking news out of Dunklin county tonight. Police tell us they have found human remains believed to be those of Breeann Rodriguez.

The remains were found around 6:30p.m. this evening by a member of the Missouri Highway Patrol Water patrol searching by boat. The remains were near what police call the number four floodway ditches.

That's the body of water near Hornersville, where divers were searching for her just days ago. It's about eight miles from her Senath, Missouri home, It's also the same area where they found Breeann's bike.

Officials tell us her parents were notified shortly after she was located.

"We appreciate all the help and support from the community in what has been a difficult time for all" said Sheriff Bob Holder.

"We are saddened to confirm our fears but glad we have been able to recover her for her parents," He added.

Breeann Rodriguez has been missing since August 6th.

On Saturday police arrested a neighbor, 43 year-old Shawn Morgan. He made his first court appearance today.

Members of the community gathered outside the courthouse Tuesday morning carrying signs saying "Justice for Breeann."

Morgan did not enter a plea and will be back in court on August 30th.

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

#Aruba Murder Mystery Deepens:

Saturday, August 13, 2011

#BreeannRodriguez:The neighbor of three-year-old Breeann Rodriguez has been formally charged

According to Prosecuting Attorney for Dunklin County, Stephen P.
Sokoloff, who spoke at a press conference around 1 p.m., Saturday, Shawn
Morgan, 43, of Senath has been charged with the felony counts of First
Degree Murder, Armed Criminal Action and Tampering with Physical
evidence in connection to the missing child
case that has been covered by local and national media since Saturday,
August 6, the day little Breeann was reported missing by her family.

Sokoloff, joined by Dunklin County Sheriff Bob Holder, and Senath Chief
of Police Omar Karnes, met with members of the press at the Dunklin
County Justice Center on Saturday after word got out that a suspect had
been taken into custody, earlier that morning. Sokoloff said that it is
charged that Morgan caused the death of Rodriguez by suffocating, but
was unable to provide any further details. He was also unable to comment
on whether or not Morgan had prior convictions or was a registered sex
offender. The prosecutor did confirm that he was a neighbor of the young
girl and her family who lives on Ode Johnson Street in Senath. The
child was reported missing by her parents who said the preschooler was
outside near the front yard of the residence riding bikes with her older
brother, age 5. The sibling reportedly went into the residence for a
drink and it was later discovered that Breeann was no longer on her pink
and purple bicycle. The mother and father began searching for their
daughter for around 30 minutes, before calling police. Since that time, a
group of local volunteers and law enforcement officials, have teamed
with the FBI and other specialty search groups in an attempt to locate
the missing girl.

Dunklin County Sheriff Bob Holder, left,
Prosecuting Attorney Stephen P. Sokoloff, center, and City of Senath
Police Chief Omar Karnes, right, hold a press conference at the Dunklin
County Justice Center in Kennett on Saturday afternoon relating to the
missing child case.

"Officers from the Senath Police Department, Dunklin County Sheriff's
Department, Dunklin County Major Case Squad, Missouri State Highway
Patrol and the FBI, have worked around the clock to attempt to locate
the girl," Sokoloff said at the press conference.
The prosecutor, as well as the sheriff and police chief, commented on
the outpour of support from the local community, recognizing the efforts
of neighbors and friends throughout Dunklin County who tirelessly
dedicated themselves to spreading the word about the case, physically
scouring the area for the missing child, and aiding the needs of law enforcement involved in the search.

Sokoloff said that Morgan is being held at the Dunklin County Justice
Center awaiting a court date that has been set for Tuesday, August 16.
Dunklin County Circuit Judge John C. Spielman issued a no bond order in
the case against Morgan who will appear in court at approximately 9 a.m., on the charges against him.

The prosecuting attorney did say that at this time in the investigation
it is unlikely that anyone else will be charged in connection to the
case and that the family has been notified of recent developments. He
also added that as search teams conduct their investigation into
locating the body of the young girl, any new developments will be
released as they become available.

Dunklin County Sheriff Bob Holder said that members of his agency and
the Dunklin County Major Case Squad, in addition to the state's
Department of Conservation, are presently dragging waters in areas of
interest that exist in Dunklin County and searching other territories
where Rodriguez's body might be found. He did not elaborate on where the
searches are specifically taking place and asked for the community's
cooperation so as to not compromise the integrity of the investigation.

#BreeannRodriguez:A southeast Missouri man is charged in the recent disappearance of a three-year-old girl.

The Daily Dunklin Democrat reported Saturday that 43-year-old Shawn
Morgan is charged with first-degree murder, armed criminal action and
tampering with evidence in connection with the disappearance of Breeann Rodriguez.

The child was last seen Aug. 6 in front of her home near Senath, about 200 miles south of St. Louis.

Dunklin County Prosecutor Stephen Sokoloff announced the charges at a
news conference Saturday and said Morgan was a neighbor of the child’s
family and is being held without bond. Morgan is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.

It was unclear if Morgan had a lawyer, and a phone listed under his name was disconnected.

Sheriff Bob Holder said the search for the child’s body continued Saturday, and included area waterways.

#CaseyAnthony:Justice for Caylee!! Stop Child Abuse!!

#BreeannRodriguez :Senath man charged with murder of Breeann Rodriguez

SENATH, MO (KAIT) - According to Dunklin County Prosecuting Attorney Stephen Sokoloff, 43-year-old Shawn Morgan has been charged with first degree murder of 3-year-old Breeann Rodriguez. Morgan has also been charged with armed criminal action, tampering with physical evidence.

Police say Morgan is from the Senath and is not related to the family.

The Dunklin County Major Case Squad, Missouri State Highway Patrol, and the Missouri Department of Conservation are currently searching for the girl's body and her bicycle in an undisclosed area in Dunklin County.

Breeann was last seen Saturday the 6th, while riding bikes with her 5-year-old brother outside their home on Ode Johnson Road. Her brother went inside for a few minutes and came back out to find no trace of Breeann, or her pink bike with training wheels.

Region 8 News has a crew on the way to Senath and will have more updates as soon as they become available.

#BreeannRodriguez: Suspect in custody, authorities searching for body

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Parents of the missing Senath girl, Edgar Rodriguez, left, and Claudia Ramos, right, search a wooded lot after two training wheels were found nearby.
(Staff photo by George Anderson)
A male suspect is presently in custody and being questioned in regard to the case of missing 3-year-old, Breeann Rodriguez of Senath.
Dunklin County Sheriff Bob Holder announced early Saturday morning that a person of interest was in custody and that he was being held at the Justice Center pending the filing of formal charges through the Dunklin County Prosecuting Attorney's Office.

Lead Prosecutor Stephen P. Sokoloff was contacted by the Daily Dunklin Democrat after the news broke and did confirm that the man is being questioned and that his office is working on determining the formal filing of charges. At approximately 9 a.m., Sokoloff added that the state should have more information within the hour in regard to the case and what advancements have been made, including any charges that would be filed.

Holder indicated in a written release regarding the suspect that investigators are no longer interested in the white cargo van that was seen days before the little girl disappeared. He and Senath Police Chief Omar Karnes also added that a team of law enforcement specialists are currently searching for the girl's body and her bicycle in an undisclosed area, that is located in Dunklin County.

That team of searchers includes the Dunklin County Major Case Squad, Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Holder said that although the Sheriff's Office and other investigating agencies received hundreds of tips from the public regarding the case, it was a thorough investigation that led to the suspect, who is from the local area and is not related to the family.

Rodriguez was last seen riding her pink and purple bicycle in front of her home on Ode Johnson Street in Senath on Saturday, August 6, 2011.

According to FBI spokesperson Rebecca Wu, the agency has transitioned the case fully to the hands of local prosecutors and all future information released on the case will come from that office.

#BreeannRodriguez : suspect in custody...

A suspect in the disappearance of a 3-year-old Missouri girl last
seen riding her bicycle was in custody Saturday, authorities announced. Authorities
were searching for Breeann Rodriguez' body and bicycle in an
undisclosed area in Dunklin County, the Senath Police Department and
Dunklin County Sheriff's Office said in a statement.
The unnamed suspect is from the area and is not related to the family, according to
the statement. He was being held at the Dunklin County Justice Center, pending formal charges.
"There have been hundreds of tips from the public but it was a thorough
investigation that led to the suspect," officials said.
They would not comment further Saturday morning.
Police said Thursday that they'd found two training wheels similar to those on
a pink bike ridden by Breeann before she went missing.
Senath police Chief Omar Karnes described the training wheels as "items of interest."
The girl was last seen riding Aug. 6 with her brother in front of their home in Senath.
The city, which has about 1,800 residents according to the U.S. Census
Bureau, is in southeast Missouri's "bootheel" about 40 miles northeast
of Jonesboro, Arkansas, and 90 miles north of Memphis, Tennessee.
A $45,000 reward -- $25,000 from the FBI and $20,000 from the Senath
Marshal's office -- was offered for information leading to Breeann's
recovery and the prosecution of those responsible.
Authorities said they were no longer interested in tracking down a white cargo van
that had been seen in the area days ahead of Breeann's disappearance.
Digital billboards with the girl's picture have been displayed in Jonesboro and
Cape Girardeau, Missouri, about 100 miles north of where she went missing.

#BreeannRodriguez :43-year-old Shawn Morgan charged with first degree murder of 3-year-old

Friday, August 12, 2011

Criminal profiling : Pat Brown and Madeleine McCann...

#BreeannRodriguez: Statement analysis...The couple say they believe Breeann was abducted.

#BreeannRodriguez and the white van myth...

Interesting in most abductions, alleged or otherwise there is a white van and little missing Breeann's case is no exception. Police are looking for a white van that is alleged to have been in the area the time Breeann vanished...but was there ? 

#BreeannRodriguez: Where is Breeann ? (video)

#RebeccaZahau:The Stranger by the Day Case of the Mansion Deaths in California of 6 year old Max, and the girlfriend of his dad Rebecca Zahau: Suicide or Murder?

Tragic death: Max Shacknai died in a San Diego hospital on Sunday after tumbling down the stairs at his father's 27-room mansion last week
Tragic death: Max Shacknai died in a San Diego hospital on Sunday after tumbling down the stairs at his father's 27-room mansion last week

So, exactly from WHERE did Max fall that could cause such trauma he was left in a coma until his death?

#RebeccaZahau : Hinkey Meter discussing the bizarre death of Rebecca Zahau and young six year old Max.

Dwight Smith Photography

Rebecca Zahau

#BreeanRodriguez: Parents of missing three year old fail polygraph tests..

The parents of a three-year-old girl who vanished without a trace while she was playing outside her house with her brother have admitted they failed polygraph tests.

Edgar Rodriguez revealed that he and his wife Claudia Ramos failed lie detector tests taken as part of the search for their missing daughter Breeann Rodriguez in Senath, two hours north of Memphis.

Speaking as police revealed they had found training wheels believed to from the bicycle Breeann was last seen riding outside her Missouri house on Saturday, Mr Rodriguez said he did not know why they had not passed the tests.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2025350/Breeann-Rodriguez-missing-Parents-3-year-old-fail-polygraph-tests.html#ixzz1UqXPzh00

#RebeccaZahau: #Websleuths discussion board on the death of Max and Rebecca

#RobynGardner believed to be dead.

#Abduction: #BreeannRodriguez Missing in Missouri

Breeann Rodriguez Missing in Missouri

#BreeannRodriguez :Training wheels found might belong to missing toddler Breeann Rodriguez

Senath, MO (KSDK)

- The FBI announced Thursday two bicycle training wheels believed to be
from the bicycle that disappeared with pre-schooler Breeann Rodriguez
were found Wednesday approximately two hours southeast of Breeann's

Breeann's father has seen the wheels and believes they
belong to his daughter because of how he manipulated them to be the
right height for her on her bike.

They were found in an area with heavy brush on County Highway 568 east of Buffalo Ditch in Dunklin County. Authorities are continuing to comb the area for additional clues.

Investigators are asking for information about a white
cargo van just days prior to Rodriguez's disappearance. The full-size
older model van may or may not have a ladder mounted on the back.

Breeann disappeared August 6. She was last seen at approximately noon riding
her pink bicycle with training wheels in front of her home on Ode
Johnson Street in Senath. Her bicycle also disappeared. She was wearing a
pink top, and pink and purple shorts.

The FBI and the Senath Marshal's office are offering a combined reward of up to $45,000 for the successful recovery and prosecution of the person(s) responsible for her disappearance, if she was abducted.

The Senath Police Department along with the FBI Task Force, Dunklin County Sheriff's

Office, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Kennett Police Department and the
Bootheel Drug Task Force are investigating the case.
Her parents made an emotional plea Monday afternoon at a news conference,
and thanked the community for their prayers and support.

Anyone with information should call the FBI command post at 314-791-1205 or call CrimeStoppers at 866-371-TIPS.

 Callers can remain anonymous.


#BreeannRodriguez: Hope after possible evidence is found

#BreeannRodriguez: Three pieces of potential evidence that could be linked to missing three year old.

Wednesday police announce they've discovered
three pieces of potential evidence that could be linked to missing
3-year-old Breeann Rodriguez.
"They are items of interest," said Chief Omar
Karnes. "We've sent them off to the crime lab for testing. They could
be evidence. Right now we can't say they are linked to Breeann, and we
can't say they aren't."

The items were discovered in an area south of Senath.
Police found a possible physical piece of
evidence around 7 p.m. Tuesday. They found two more possible pieces of
evidence Wednesday morning.

The items were located on County Road 568 in Dunklin County which is approximately two miles southeast of Breeann's home.
The FBI would give no further details on what
they found, but did say crews are searching south of Senath with
helicopters and dog teams.

"It's not clothing and it's not the bike," said Chief Karnes.
Breeann was last seen Saturday while riding
bikes with her five year old brother outside their home on Ode Johnson
road. Her brother went inside for a few minutes and came back out to
find no trace of Breeann, or her pink bike with training wheels.

FBI and Senath Police are looking for a white
cargo van that was seen in the area just days prior to Breeann
disappearing. The full-size older model van could have a ladder mounted
in the back.

At the time of Breeann's disappearance, she was wearing a pink top, and pink and purple shorts
Chief Karnes says for the first time he feels the case it's going somewhere.
"It appears a trail is forming," said Chief Karnes. "I believe she's alive. I feel like somebody's trying to hide something."
Her parents say they are heartbroken and anxious for their daughter's safety. They also believe Breeann is alive.
"I feel like someone has her and they are
scared to bring her back," said her father, Edgar Rodriguez. "I don't
care. All I want is my daughter."

"We just rely on God and pray," said Claudia, her mother. "I know anytime someone is going to tell me they found her."
The FBI and the Senath police are offering a
combined reward of up to $45,000 for the successful recovery and
prosecution of whoever is responsible for her disappearance, if she was

Police ask anyone with information to call the St. Louis Regional CrimeStoppers tip number at 1-866-371-TIPS.
Tips will also be taken at the Senath Police
Department at (573) 738-2818 or the Dunklin County Sheriff's Office at
(573) 888-2424.

Digital billboards are now displaying Breeann's picture in at:

•Kings Highway and Broadway (Cape Girardeau, MO)
•2418 South Caraway (Jonesboro, AR)
•2610 E. Highland Drive (Jonesboro, AR)
•2412 Stadium Boulevard (Jonesboro, AR)

Family and friends of Breeann will gather Wednesday night for a candlelight vigil at 7:30 in the city park.