Colorado Reporters Sue Boulder DA Over Ramsey Case

Discussion in 'Justice for JonBenet Discussion - Public Forum' started by koldkase, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. otg

    otg Member

  2. cynic

    cynic Member

    Thanks OTG. I believe Brennan et al have a winnable case, but it's likely to be hard fought.
    I think the legal point that will ultimately prevail is the following:
    Colorado Rules of Criminal Procedure 6.2
    All persons associated with a grand jury and its investigations or functions should at all times be aware that a grand jury is an investigative body, the proceedings of which shall be secret. Witnesses or persons under investigation should be dealt with privately to insure fairness. The oath of secrecy shall continue until such time as an indictment is made public, if an indictment is returned, or until a grand jury report dealing with the investigation is issued and made public as provided by law.
  3. madeleine_ws

    madeleine_ws Member

    it's even a bit ironic...cause the jurors themselves broke the silence re the indictment in the first I guess this means they want the truth to be known,no?

    so this is why I find his argument (better said excuse) ironic
  4. Elle

    Elle Member

    No argument here KK! Life is so unfair!
  5. Elle

    Elle Member

    I received this from Amazon this morning, having bought a few books from them relating to the JonBenét case. I remember reading about this
    Reverse Speech before. Reading this synopsis makes me sick

    JonBenet Knows Evil Love Paperback

    By Richard Rubacher

    Reverse Speech is the technology that eavesdrops on the psyche. When we talk, we are in a public confessional box. If the Ramseys had listened to the sage advice of their attorney (Keep quiet. Dont hold any press conference.), we would not have the twenty-five smoking guns that link them to the killing of JonBenet. We would not have evidence from Patsys own mouth that she wrote the ransom note. We would not have Jon Ramseys verbal testimony that he used his daughter as his sex toy. We would not know that Patsy referred to JonBenet as you lady mannequin. Nor would we know that Jon Ramsey has a ravenous appetite for pre-pubescent girls. In Closing Arguments, the Ramseys are tried in the Spiritual Court. The reader becomes a part of the jury where evidence is presented that a traditional jury is deprived of. The author has offered to break bread with the Ramseys. Should they accept the invitation for a rendezvous, they can hear the confession they made through their unconscious mind.
  6. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member

    Yeah, and what about that other parts of the quote cynic put up:

    I guess for me it comes down to splitting verbal hairs. Is a "True Bill" signed by the Grand Jury an indictment itself? Of course the D.A. didn't sign it, and I think that's exactly why he didn't. He wanted to SUBVERT the True Bill so he could suppress it. Think about it: if the press got hold of that True Bill and Hunter decided NOT to indict and prosecute the Ramseys, it would have looked...well, like it looks now.

    The man refused to do his job, period. He obstructed the investigation from Day One, he was the D.A. for the Defense, and now we have some other clues as to why that might have happened.

    Here's a link to the original publication of the article in the Daily Camera. If you read the comments, seems lots of people in Boulder aren't fooled by any of it, including Hunter's part:

    "Boulder DA: Release of Ramsey documents would be "breach of promise" to grand jury"

    If you read the report from the hearing on Friday, in the comments you can find something from an old case side-character, as well, claiming Hunter was known to have a little drug problem of his own back in the day. Check out the comment left by Evan Ravitz:

    "Judge hears arguments in Camera reporter's bid to force release of Ramsey indictment
    Attorneys argue grand-jury secrecy not permanent"

    Oh! And there are some great photographs from the court hearing on Friday, including one of Charlie Brennan and also of Fleet White. They look good.
  7. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member



    Kane led a good set of lawyers and investigators who got a True Bill from the Grand Jury.

    Then he had to watch as Hunter blew it all up.

    Hunter knew all along he was never going to prosecute the rich parents in a child murder, IMO. That's why he was handing their lawyers the evidence results as fast as he got them. Remember Thomas wrote the BPD realized this and decided no longer to share it with Hunter during their investigation. Remember when Lacy broke into the BPD's computerized investigation room?

    Lord, what a travesty and disgrace this case has been.

    And as long as I've watched it all unfold, which has taken over 16 years to get this much of the truth revealed, I am still surprised and disappointed at each and every bold, corrupt, blatantly illegal element of conspiracy that went on in Boulder.
  8. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member

    Interesting, Elle. I'm trying to remember details about this author...was he the preacher who was a bit of a wingnut? Sorry, hard to keep up with all the characters through so many years.
  9. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member

    There's a great discussion on Websleuths' JBR forum about Colorado law on case records, actions, and evidence being disclosed.

    OTG and Cynic have contributed some very interesting excerpts of info and the laws, as well as good discussion and info from other members, if you are interested in keeping up on what the issues are:
  10. Elle

    Elle Member

    Don't know KK!(?). Just received it. I find it difficult to keep up with
    everything related to this case. However, I will do my best to keep involved.
  11. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member

    So otg has posted the document filed by Brennan's attorneys to have the Grand Jury True Bill released to the public under a precedent case where a Colorado judge ruled such a True Bill could be considered equal to a Grand Jury "Report." A Grand Jury report in fact would have been subject to release under Colorado Grand Jury law, as I understand what I've been reading.

    I hope otg will post it here for us, especially in the case files, just so we can have the record. You can read it in his post on WS:

    Thanks, otg! You rock! :gavel:
  12. koldkase

    koldkase FFJ Senior Member

    It's been too long a haul for all of us, Elle. I know I never dreamed I'd be discussing this case nearly 17 years later, how justice was subverted not only by the parents of the victim, but by the very D.A. Office sworn to uphold the law.

    Then just when I think it's finally all over, that those very people have managed to destroy this case for all time...something comes along to crack it back open for another drip, drip, drip of more exposure of corruption, more shock at how blatantly the public has been misled by those we are supposed to trust.

    We're all hanging in there, Elle, and you're good company.
  13. Cherokee

    Cherokee FFJ Senior Member

    Awesome! And thanks, OTG!
  14. Cherokee

    Cherokee FFJ Senior Member

    My thanks to you, Elle, and others, who are keeping this case alive with your interest.

    We are the Ramsey's (and Hunter's, Lacy's, et al) worst nightmare because we won't let it go. They keep hoping it will die and be buried under their onslaught of BS spin, corruption and a bogus DNA exoneration.

    Almost 17 years later, we still care about finding out what really happened Christmas night 1996. That's more than you can say about "I'd rather be golfing" John Ramsey. But then, he has a reason for that. Guilty knowledge hides from the truth, and John Ramsey is full of it.
  15. Elle

    Elle Member

    Thank you, Cherokee. It is good you and the others being in a younger group still have the energy to do the research you all do. I wish all of you all the best and hope you do find the answers. You certainly work hard at it!
  16. Elle

    Elle Member

    I second this, Cherokee - otg is a treasure!
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2013
  17. otg

    otg Member

    Are you getting softer as the years go by, koldkase? Seems like I remember a certain pyrate as having no qualms about copying from elsewhere if it suited their purpose. Or is it that since you publicly left that other forum, you don't want to admit that you read there? In either case, I will gladly repost the information here. And I also hereby give you my unquestioned permission to copy and post anything you wish in the future that I may post there. (I really am not overly protective of my "intellectual properties".)

    And just for your information (or anyone else's who may consider it), I offer this little tip that I've learned from past experience: If you copy a post here at FFJ and post it over at WS, you will keep all the font formatting. However, it doesn't work the other way around. If you copy something at WS and post it here, you lose all the formatting. While I don't mind copying posts from there to here, the complicated posts that have different formatting to make things stand out will be lost. So I really suggest for clarity sake that people read the posts over there. It is a pretty good discussion, and as always, cynic is a treasure trove of information.

    Anyway, I'll post Charlie Brennan's legal filing in a separate post so that the mods can move it to another thread if they so choose, or if you want to copy it to another post somewhere else, kk. (There isn't too much font formatting in it that I can't redo.)
  18. otg

    otg Member

    Charlie Brennan's filing

    (NOTE: The two bolded lines (by me) are related to the Colorado Supreme Court decision on the Aaron Thompson indictment. More information about it here)

    DATE FILED: September 18, 2013 3:00 PM
    FILING ID: C3C720A191B88
    Court Address: 1777 6th St.
    P. O. Box 4249
    Boulder, CO 80306
    CHARLIE BRENNAN, an individual; and
    THE PRESS, an unincorporated association
    STANLEY L. GARNETT, in his official capacity as the
    District Attorney for the Twentieth Judicial District
    Attorneys for Plaintiffs:
    Thomas B. Kelley,#1971
    Steven D. Zansberg,#26634
    Christopher P. Beall,#28536


    Marianne Wesson,#8222
    University of Colorado

    Plaintiffs, Charlie Brennan and Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, by and
    through their undersigned attorneys, for their Complaint against Defendant Stanley L. Garnett, in
    his official capacity as the District Attorney for the Twentieth Judicial District, allege as follows:

    This civil action, brought pursuant to the Colorado Criminal Justice Records Act
    (?CCJRA?),§ 24-72-301, et seq., C.R.S, seeks to secure access to a certain criminal justice
    record from the custodian of the record, District Attorney Stanley L. Garnett (?Garnett?). The
    record relates to the investigation by the Office of the District Attorney for the Twentieth
    Judicial District and the Boulder Police Department into the death of JonBenét Ramsey on
    December 26, 1996. On information and belief, Plaintiffs allege that Garnett has in his custody,
    possession, or control a document purporting to be an indictment that was duly voted upon by
    the Grand Jury empaneled to investigate the murder of JonBenét Ramsey, and duly signed by the
    Grand Jury foreperson, charging John Ramsey and Patsy Ramsey with the crime of child abuse
    resulting in death, a Class 2 felony, pursuant to § 18-6-401(7)(a)(I), C.R.S., which has not been
    officially disclosed to the public. There has been to date no official public acknowledgment of
    this act by the grand jury, and no disclosure of the document that resulted. As more fully set
    forth below, Plaintiffs seek, under the Colorado Criminal Justice Records Act, the right to
    inspect and copy the purported indictment in question, the disclosure of which would not be
    contrary to the public interest.


    1. This Court has jurisdiction over the claims herein under the CCJRA.§ 24-72305(7), C.R.S.
    2. Plaintiff Charlie Brennan (Brennan) is employed as a reporter for the
    newspaper, the Boulder Daily Camera. He has regularly investigated and reported upon the
    JonBenét Ramsey murder investigation. Brennan is a person as defined in the CCJRA.§ 2472-
    302(9), C.R.S.
    3. Plaintiff Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP) is an
    unincorporated association of reporters and editors that has worked to defend First Amendment
    rights and freedom of information interests of the news media since 1970. The RCFP is likewise
    a person as defined in the CCJRA. Id.
    4. Garnett is the duly elected District Attorney for the Twentieth Judicial District,
    State of Colorado. He is both the ?custodian? and the ?official custodian? of the criminal justice
    record at issue in this case. See §§ 24-72-302(5) & (8), C.R.S.
    5. The CCJRA affords to any person denied access to inspection of any criminal
    justice record the right to apply to the district court in the district wherein the record is found for
    an order directing the custodian of such record to show cause why said custodian should not
    permit the inspection of the record. A hearing on such application must be held at the earliest
    practical time, and,nless the court finds that the denial of inspection was proper, it shall
    order the custodian to permit such inspection.?§ 24-72-305(7), C.R.S.


    6. On December 26, 1996, JonBenét Ramsey, age 6, was found dead in the basement
    of her family's home in Boulder, Colorado. An autopsy and initial investigation indicated death
    was caused by violent means. Since that occurrence, and continuing until this day, the case has
    been the subject of massive publicity, including television appearances by the girl's parents, John
    and Patsy Ramsey, and two published books concerning the events of the investigation written
    by John Ramsey. To date, no one has been brought to court for criminal responsibility for
    JonBenét's death.
    7. On August 12, 1998, then-Governor Roy Romer and then-District Attorney for
    the Twentieth Judicial District Alex Hunter (?Hunter?) announced that the Ramsey murder case
    would be investigated by a Grand Jury to be empaneled by this Court of the Twentieth Judicial
    District. Shortly thereafter, that Grand Jury was empaneled, sworn, and charged, and thereafter
    supervised by this Court.
    8. On information and belief, on a date shortly prior to October 13, 1999, the Grand
    Jury voted in favor of an indictment of JonBenét Ramsey's parents, John Ramsey and Patsy
    Ramsey, for the crime of child abuse resulting in death, a Class 2 felony pursuant to § 18-6401
    (7)(a)(I), C.R.S. Also on information and belief, a written indictment (the Indictment) was
    prepared for and signed by the Grand Jury foreperson. However, Hunter elected not to sign the
    Indictment, and not to present it to the District Court, but to keep the Indictment secret from the
    general public.
    9. On October 13, 1999, the Grand Jury investigating the death of JonBenét Ramsey
    was discharged, and Hunter announced we believe we do not have sufficient evidence to
    warrant a filing of charges against anyone who has been investigated at this time. Steven K.
    Paulson, No Charges in JonBenet Case, WASH. POST (Oct. 13, 1999), .

    This announcement left the public with the clear impression that the Grand Jury had
    determined not to indict anyone in connection with the death of JonBenét. A true and
    correct copy of the October 13, 1999 article is attached as Ex. 1.


    10. On or about March 13, 2013, Brennan sent an e-mail addressed to Garnett
    requesting, pursuant to the Colorado Open Records Law,§ 24-72-201, et seq., C.R.S., and the
    CCJRA,§ 24-72-301, et seq., C.R.S., the opportunity to inspect and copy records described as:
    A true bill, or indictment, returned by the Boulder County Grand Jury in October
    1999, pursuant to that body's investigations and deliberations into the December
    1996 death of JonBenét Ramsey.
    Brennan further requested that in the event his request for inspection was denied, he be provided
    with a written statement of all grounds for the denial. A true and correct copy of the March 13,
    2013 e-mail is attached as Ex. 2.
    11. On March 18, 2013, Karen Lorenz (?Lorenz?), Chief Deputy District Attorney for
    the Twentieth Judicial District, wrote to Brennan denying his request to inspect the Indictment.
    The grounds cited were that public disclosure of records such as that described in Brennan's
    request would be contrary to Colorado Rule of Criminal Procedure 6.2, providing that grand jury
    proceedings are secret, and that accordingly the disclosure of the documents would be contrary
    to law and therefore the public interest. A true and correct copy of the March 18, 2013 letter is
    attached as Ex. 3.
    12. On June 27, 2013, Thomas B. Kelley (?Kelley?), as attorney for Brennan, and
    also as attorney for RCFP, wrote Garnett requesting that he reconsider the position taken by
    Lorenz in her March 18, 2013 letter. Kelley?s letter contended on behalf of his clients that:
    (1) the Indictment that was voted upon, prepared for, and signed by the foreperson of the Grand
    Jury was a record of official action that must be disclosed under the CCJRA
    ; or, alternatively,
    (2) the Indictment at least warranted the status of a grand jury report, which should be submitted
    to this Court for consideration of disclosure to the public. The letter further argued that to the
    extent the District Attorney is authorized to prevent an indictment from going forward by
    refusing to sign it, his actions in taking such action should be fully disclosed to the public. By
    this letter RCFP joined in Mr. Brennan's original request to inspect the Indictment, as explicated
    in the Kelley letter. A true and correct copy of the June 27, 2013 letter is attached as Ex. 4.
    13. On July 1, 2013, Sean P. Finn, Chief Trial Deputy/Custodian of Records for the
    Office of the District Attorney for the Twentieth Judicial District (Finn), responded to Kelley's
    letter, acknowledging the different views on the subject of whether an indictment voted upon,
    prepared by or for the Grand Jury, and signed by its foreperson is an indictment that should
    publicly be disclosed. Finn expressed respect for the views of Hon. Judge Sherman G. Finesilver
    of the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado with respect to an indictment that was
    prepared by a grand jury and signed by its foreman but unsigned by the prosecutor; Judge
    Finesilver had held that such a document would not be treated as a public document but instead
    be treated as a grand jury report subject to disclosure at the discretion of the court. However, in
    this letter the District Attorney through Finn expressly disclaimed any determination that
    disclosure of the Indictment was contrary to the public interest, using this language:
    While we have ultimately decided that we must refuse your request, we have
    found many of your arguments persuasive, and we have taken seriously your
    request that we reconsider the question of what is required by the public interest
    in these unusual circumstances. This office has spoken with Chief Beckner of the
    Boulder Police Department in order to determine whether, in the view of his
    Department, the release of documents like the ones you describe could hamper
    ongoing or future investigations. He believes there is no such risk. As such, our
    refusal to provide these documents is based solely upon our concerns regarding
    the legality of such a disclosure. This decision should not be interpreted as an
    exercise of our discretion pursuant to § 24-72-305[,] C.R.S. Thus the letter took
    the position that the question of whether the Indictment should be made
    available for inspection and copying should be decided by the Court and not the Office of the
    District Attorney. A true and correct copy of the July 1, 2013 letter is attached as Ex. 5
    14. The Plaintiffs believe, for reasons recited in the Kelley letter of June 27, 2013,
    that the Indictment is a criminal justice record that reflects official action by the Grand Jury, and
    accordingly that it is subject to mandatory disclosure upon request pursuant to §§ 24-72-303 &
    304, C.R.S.
    Alternatively, the Plaintiffs submit that the Indictment should be treated as a report
    by the Grand Jury, which is subject to disclosure and should be disclosed at the direction of this
    Court pursuant to § 16-5-205.5(5)(d), C.R.S. Alternatively, they argue that the Indictment
    should be disclosed to the public because such disclosure would serve the public interest in
    government transparency and not be contrary to the public interest nor cause undue adverse
    effect upon the privacy of any individual. For all of these reasons, this Court should order the
    Indictment to be disclosed to Plaintiffs, an order that would ensure its disclosure to the public.
    WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs, Charlie Brennan and Reporters Committee for Freedom of the
    Press, pursuant to § 24-72-305(7), C.R.S., respectfully pray that:
    The Court enter an order directing the Defendant to show cause why the
    Defendant should not permit their inspection and copying of the Indictment;
    The Court conduct a hearing pursuant to such order at the earliest practical time
    as required by § 24-72-305(7), C.R.S., and after such hearing to make the Show
    Cause Order absolute;
    The Court convene a status conference to establish a schedule for briefing and
    evidence disclosure prior to the hearing so that the Court may be fully informed
    before the hearing begins.

    Dated: September 18, 2013.
    By s/ Thomas B. Kelley
    Thomas B. Kelley
    Steven D. Zansberg
    Christopher P. Beall
    Marianne Wesson

    Attorneys for Plaintiffs

    Charlie Brennan and Reporters Committee
    for Freedom of the Press

    UNDER C.R.C.P. 121(C),§ 1-26.
  19. Tricia

    Tricia Administrator Staff Member

    Well it's good to see someone in the media is doing something to finally get to the truth.
  20. Elle

    Elle Member

    Thank you otg for posting this very interesting information! Wish I had a lawyer friend!

    Yes, Tricia! Hoping something good stems from all this news. Hope you are doing okay too!
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