Fleet White Officially Exonerated!!!!

Discussion in 'Justice for JonBenet Discussion - Public Forum' started by Tez, Jan 24, 2014.

  1. Tez

    Tez Member

    BOULDER, Colo. - The JonBenet Ramsey murder case took another unusual twist Thursday when Boulder Police Chief Mark R. Beckner issued a formal statement that Fleet White, Jr. is not a suspect in the case -- the second time police have taken that step since JonBenet was murdered in 1996.

    Police said the latest statement was made necessary because of "past inaccurate statements and speculation appearing in the media and at the request of Fleet and Priscilla White." The statement did not go into more detail about what prompted it.

    "A great deal of that reporting and speculation targeted innocent community members whose only connection to the crime was as cooperating witnesses," Beckner said. "This includes the Fleet White, Jr. family of Boulder who suffered embarrassment and damage to their reputations."


    This is the third time Fleet and Priscilla have been cleared...Although certain numbskulls are still painting them as suspects. And that really irks me!
  2. Tawny

    Tawny Member

  3. Cherokee

    Cherokee FFJ Senior Member

    Yes, that's great for Fleet White ... but poor Paula Woodward, there goes half her book!

    With Paula's "cooperation" from John Ramsey and Lin Wood, you know they were planning to point the finger at Fleet White again, and I bet dollars to donuts, Beckner and the BPD found out that was the focus of Paula's book ... thus, the timing of Fleet's latest exoneration.

    Fleet might not have been "named" in Paula's book per se, but every hint would have been directed into describing him as the "friend" who was allegedly, the biggest suspect (cough, cough) in John's eyes.

    Half-lies and innuendo, against a person who put two and two together early on and realized the Ramsey were involved in JonBenet's death and cover-up, is the only defense John has left!
  4. madeleine_ws

    madeleine_ws Member

  5. BobC

    BobC Poster of the EON - Fabulous Inimitable Transcript

    Cherokee--I 'm with you. Woodhead's book will be filled with "Could it be that..?" and "Is it possible...?" You know, like people do in Bigfoot "documentaries." But don't think the Whites are the only people this cowardly hagfish will try to finger.

    On the other hand--nobody's going to buy this crap anyway so who cares. She's a joke. Only nobody's laughing.
  6. Tawny

    Tawny Member

    She's delusional.
  7. Elle

    Elle Member

    Thank you for the update on Fleet White, Tez. Have a lot to catch up on here!
  8. Tez

    Tez Member

    My thoughts exactly Tawny!

    And a big FFJ Welcome To You! I know you will enjoy it here, we don't have the deLouSional folk to deal with around here. :welcome:
  9. cynic

    cynic Member

    All we need now is for the BPD to officially undo Lacy’s ridiculous pronouncement and all will be right with the world.
  10. DeeDee

    DeeDee Member

    The present DA Garnett did "kind of" undo Lacy's ridiculous clearing of the Rs when he took over and made a comment that as far as he was concerned, no one was cleared.
  11. zoomama

    zoomama Active Member

    I love PW's statement that "she wants the public to know that she approached the subject with an objective manner". Hahahaha yeah right!

  12. cynic

    cynic Member

    Hey DeeDee,

    I certainly won’t argue the point that Stan has rescinded the “exoneration†given by Lacy.
    My beef with Stan and the BPD, well, one of them :D, is that as I’ve mentioned before, the comments by Stan relating to Lacy have the feel of “whispers in the shadows.â€
    Lacy had the big press release where she spelled out, in no uncertain terms, that she was clearing her friends, the Ramseys.
    Similarly, I would like to see an official press release stating VERY CLEARLY that Lacy’s “Presidential end-of-term pardon†is without legal merit.
    Obviously, the mainstream media hasn’t got the message because all you hear them talking about when the case is discussed is how the Ramseys were cleared by Lacy.

    Here are Stan Garnett’s comments, for reference:

    Finally, it's important to understand the proper role of the DA in the justice system. A DA's job is to file cases where ethical standards are met and to pursue them to justice. District attorneys are not priests; our job is not to forgive, and rarely to "exonerate", and straying from this role can be very confusing to the public and can create false impressions of certainty about uncertain evidence, subject to conflicting inferences, that has never been presented and tested in open court. Under our system of justice everyone is presumed innocent (or, is "exonerated" ), unless charges are brought and there is a conviction by a jury in open court.
    Daily Camera, Op-Ed, October 27, 2013

    Dan Caplis: And Stan, so it would be fair to say then that Mary Lacy’s clearing of the Ramseys is no longer in effect, you’re not bound by that, you’re just going to follow the evidence wherever it leads.
    Stan Garnett: What I’ve always said about Mary Lacy’s exoneration is that it speaks for itself.
    I’ve made it clear that any decisions made going forward about the Ramsey case will be made based off of evidence…
    Dan Caplis: Stan, when you say that the exoneration speaks for itself, are you saying that it’s Mary Lacy taking action, and that action doesn’t have any particular legally binding effect, it may cause complications if there is ever a prosecution of a Ramsey down the road, but it doesn’t have a legally binding effect on you, is that accurate?
    That is accurate, I think that is what most of the press related about the exoneration at the time that it was issued.
    Craig Silverman: I’d say the headline out of our show, is once again you established out of your questioning of Stan Garnett that that letter (of exoneration) isn’t worth the paper it’s written on as far as Stan Garnett is concerned.

    Caplis and Silverman, KHOW 630 radio, October 11, 2010
  13. zoomama

    zoomama Active Member

    Cynic, I can understand your point about a much clearer statement from Garnett. However could it be that for some ODD reason that Boulder air prevents any of the persons In the office of DA to speak harshly about the past DA's? And lawyers just love to make statements that are masterpieces of unclarity. (is that a word?) Maybe obfuscate is better?
  14. cynic

    cynic Member


    You may be onto something, Zoomama. :D
    The elevation of Boulder is 5,430 feet, although the DA’s office must be higher. :crosseyed :hypno: :beammeup:

    Signs of severe altitude sickness:
    •worsening of the symptoms described above
    •a persistent, irritable cough
    •breathlessness (even when resting)
    •bubbling sound in the chest
    •coughing up pink or white frothy liquid
    •clumsiness and difficulty walking
    •irrational behaviour
    •double vision

    •convulsions (fits)

    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
  15. Elle

    Elle Member


    Methinks zoomama just swallowed the dictionary.[​IMG]
  16. cynic

    cynic Member

    Alex Hunter - lies and injustice from Sid Wells to JonBenet

    Boulder District Attorney Alex Hunter said in a prepared statement Thursday that Colorado law doesn’t permit the release of the grand jury transcript until either an indictment is returned or a report is issued, neither of which has occurred in the Ramsey case.

    Of course, the public found out that this was a big lie late last year:
    Grand jury indicted JonBenet Ramsey parents
    Associated Press, 10/25/2013
    A grand jury found enough evidence to indict the parents of JonBenet Ramsey for child abuse and accessory to first-degree murder in the 6-year-old's death
    At the time, then-District Attorney Alex Hunter didn't mention an indictment, saying only that there wasn't enough evidence to warrant charges against the Ramseys


    Yes, it must have slipped his mind…â€â€¦Alex Hunter didn’t mention an indictment…â€
    Alex Hunter’s lies didn’t end there. Linda Hoffmann-Pugh, represented by attorney Darnay Hoffman, began litigation against Alex Hunter to bypass Grand Jury secrecy rules preventing her from speaking freely about her testimony.
    The case was filed on August 10, 2000 and continued for nearly three and a half years all the way to the Supreme Court.
    Throughout the proceedings, both Alex Hunter and Mary Lacy perpetuated the following lie:
    The Boulder grand jury’s term ended in October, 1999 without issuing an indictment or report concerning the JonBenet Ramsey murder.

    It was presented as an uncontested material fact that there was no indictment presented by the Grand Jury in the Ramsey case.
    Plaintiff Linda Hoffmann-Pugh submits this brief pursuant to D.C.COLO. LR 7.1F in support of her Motion for Summary Judgment.
    1. A grand jury was convened in Boulder County in 1998, one of the purposes of which was to hear evidence in the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation.
    2. The Boulder grand jury’s term ended in October, 1999 without issuing an indictment or report concerning the JonBenet Ramsey murder.

    Could knowledge of the indictment have impacted the outcome of this and other litigation involving the Ramseys?
    I think the answer is a resounding, yes.
    Consider that according to Hunter, the only thing stopping the release of the Grand Jury transcript as requested by Lin Wood and Mike Kane was the “fact†that, (as I mentioned above,) “Colorado law doesn’t permit the release of the grand jury transcript until either an indictment is returned or a report is issued, neither of which has occurred in the Ramsey case.â€
    Even the very course of the investigation might have taken a different path had the public been aware of what really happened at the conclusion of the Grand Jury investigation.

    A brief history with some of the key events in the litigation involving Hoffmann-Pugh v. Hunter/Lacy is presented below.

    • Filed: 8/10/2000
    Judge Wiley Y. Daniel
    Civil Action No. 1:00-cv-01597-WYD
    ALEXANDER M. HUNTER, as District Attorney for the 20th Judicial District Defendant.

    • Filed: 4/9/2001
    ORDER : by Judge Wiley Y. Daniel granting the stipulated motion for substitution of parties Mary T. Keenan for Alexander M. Hunter as defendant
    Civil Action No. 1:00-cv-01597-WYD
    MARY T. KEENAN, as District Attorney for the 20th Judicial District of the State of Colorado,

    • Filed: 7/9/2001
    JUDGMENT: by Honorable Wiley Y. Daniel … it is ORDERED that judgment is hereby entered in favor of the Plaintiff, Linda Hoffman-Pugh and against Defendant, Mary T. Keenan, as District Attorney for the 20th Judicial District of the State of Colorado, on Plaintiff's motion for Summary judgment. Insofar as Colorado Rules of Criminal procedure 6.2 and 6.3 prohibit a grand jury witness from disclosing her own testimony after the term of the Grand Jury has ended, they violate the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.

    • Filed: 8/6/2001
    NOTICE OF APPEAL by defendant Mary T. Keenan
    No. 01-1385
    MARY T. KEENAN, as District Attorney for the 20th Judicial District of the State of Colorado

    • Filed: 9/2/2003
    MANDATE from the Court of Appeals; CA # 01-1385; Date issued 8/28/03;
    JUDGMENT filed 8/6/03 reversing the district court's grant of summary judgment


    As the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit considered the matter it was clearly being misled. Consider the following statement:
    Hoffmann-Pugh v. Keenan, No. 01-1385
    Ms. Hoffmann-Pugh claims, and the district court agreed, that the Colorado secrecy rules violate her First Amendment rights by requiring her to remain silent even after the grand jury ended its term without issuing an indictment or report.


    • January 12, 2004
    Also today, the Supreme Court:
    Refused to hear a case involving the former housekeeper for the JonBenet Ramsey family
    who has sought to tell about her grand jury testimony in a book. The justices, without comment, refused to consider Linda Hoffmann-Pugh's free-speech challenge of Colorado grand jury secrecy rules.
    Hoffmann-Pugh worked for John and Patsy Ramsey when their 6-year-old daughter was found strangled and beaten in the basement of their Boulder, Colo., home on Dec. 26, 1996. She testified before a grand jury that ended its term in 1999 without issuing an indictment, but is prohibited from disclosing details of the testimony.
    Hoffman-Pugh has written a book, The Death of an Innocent. But her attorney told the Court that the secrecy rules have interfered with the publishing of it. Colorado lawyers told justices in a filing that the former housekeeper could still publish a book about her experiences, she just can't reveal what she told the grand jury.
    The case is Hoffman-Pugh v. Keenan, 03-661.

    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
  17. cynic

    cynic Member

    Hunter's actions were noticed by many throughout the years and the list of detractors is lengthy

    University of Colorado Law School professor Mimi Wesson said in an e-mail it is her opinion that proper legal procedure would have been to sign the document, file it with the court and then move in open court to dismiss the charges.
    "That would be the more transparent and responsible course," Wesson wrote


    If the district attorney, in the conscientious exercise of his duty, feels that no arrest should be made despite the action of the grand jury in returning an indictment, he ought to take the responsibility of filing a refusal to prosecute, which is an open act and for which he can be held accountable by the public.

    KING: Lin, are you worried when Steve said that he heard that one of the grand jury members may come forward and say they wanted to indict?
    WOOD: I think what I heard him say was that he had heard that one grand juror may want to come out and talk...
    KING: Right.
    WOOD: And then -- see, here's Steve Thomas for you -- he takes that hearsay, rumor, gossip, and then makes the outrageous statement that from that the grand jury may well have indicted. Listen, if the grand jury indicted John and Patsy Ramsey, there would be -- we'd be probably in the middle of a trial right now. You're not going to put a grand jury out there for 13 months and spend millions of dollars of taxpayers' hard-earned money, have them bring an indictment, and then say no thanks.


    I don’t claim to know what was behind Hunter’s decisions. Cowardice, corruption, and incompetence are all strong possibilities.
    Consider what he had to say about the OJ Simpson case.

    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/2H2drkgXnTA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

    DA Hunter’s contribution to all or this is yet to be determined. A question has been raised that could put yet another twist on how he will be remembered in this case. Did the Grand Jury really vote to indict the Ramseys and did Alex Hunter decide against it because he didn’t feel he had the evidence.
    He told us he could not comment on what the Grand Jury did, but he did say:
    “I can point to cases, and you have talked about cases where the prosecutor is pushed to move, I frankly think the prosecutor was pushed to move in (the) OJ (case) by the Cochrane group too quickly and I think they fell for it, it was lost, it’s over - and I don’t think that’s what this little girl wants me to do.
    When I try to look through her eyes, that is not what she wants me to do and I am not going to give into the crowd, if you will, I’m just not going to do that.”

    JonBenet: Anatomy of an Investigation - A&E, Investigative Reports, Aug. 28, 2000

    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Last month, a newspaper column called Alex Hunter "the reluctant prosecutor." Veteran reporter Juliet Wittman outlined a sampling of cases not filed or undercharged.
    JULIET WITTMAN: I think there's real fear and incompetence and laziness.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Attorney Claudia Bayliff ran Boulder's rape crisis center for five years. She says she was surprised at the plea bargains for child molesters in 1990, she prepared this formal study of Hunter's record.
    CLAUDIA BAYLIFF, ATTORNEY: The most staggering statistic we came up with was of 60 individuals who were convicted of sexually abusing children or incest, only one went to prison. And we were absolutely stunned by that.

    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Bayliff resigned in frustration. The new team at the rape crisis center says Hunter's record has improved. But what about the thorny case of Sid Wells, murdered in 1983? June Menger is Sid Wells' mother.
    JUNE MENGER, MOTHER OF MURDER VICTIM, SID WELLS: It's like deja vu for me, watching the Ramsey case.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Before JonBenet, the world media swarmed on Boulder to cover the murder case of Sid Wells, the steady boyfriend of Shauna Redford, Robert Redford's daughter. Wells, a handsome journalism student, was fatally shot in his apartment in the back of the head with a .20 gauge shotgun. Fred Neitzel was lead detective on the case. He arrested Sid Wells' roommate, Thayne Smika.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: How convinced were you that Thayne Smika was the killer?
    RET DET. FRED NEITZEL, BOULDER POLICE: I was very convinced myself.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: One hundred percent sure?
    RET DET. FRED NEITZEL: My opinion was 100 percent.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Back then, the cops found Smika with a .20 gauge shotgun and two rare shells with pellets the FBI said chemically matched the ones in the victim's head. But Hunter's office thought the case was weak, and Smika was out of jail in less than a month.
    But there was something else that made the detectives angry.
    This document. Neitzel says he found it by accident. It shows a puzzling deal Hunter cut with the suspected murderer. If Smika would waive his right to a speedy trial, Hunter would guarantee a grand jury would not indict him.
    RET DET. FRED NEITZEL: At first it was total shock. Then it became rage.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: The deal did allow for a future prosecution. And now, under the scrutiny of the Ramsey case, the Smika case has been reopened. State—of—the—art ballistics tests confirm the old ones. But here's the problem — Thayne Smika skipped town and disappeared more than a decade ago. Again, June Menger, the murder victim's mother, on Alex Hunter.
    JUNE MENGER: I think he should resign.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: But the pressing question today is, can district attorney Alex Hunter rise to the current challenge of the Ramsey case? Again, ABC NEWS consultant Vincent Bugliosi.
    VINCENT BUGLIOSI: I'm sure he's an honorable person and he's interested in seeking justice in this case. But he's certainly not the stereotypical DA who's tough and hard—nosed. And you need an aggressive DA in a situation like this. And he apparently is not that type of person.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: Which, perhaps, is why his critics say it took public protest to get the Ramsey case to a grand jury after nearly two years. Remember, a grand jury can compel reluctant witnesses to testify.
    ELIZABETH VARGAS: How unusual is it to wait that long to impanel a grand jury to investigate that?
    VINCENT BUGLIOSI: It's highly unusual, particularly when you have two suspects and they're not cooperating with you I mean, it's DA 101 that when you have two suspects, you do everything possible immediately to separate those two and not give them time for their stories to harden and to reconcile with each other. It's being done now, a year and a half later. But it's a little late in the day. Incompetence.

    ABC 20/20 Sunday "What Happened to JonBenet Ramsey?" September 27, 1998

    Some residents and attorneys who know Hunter say he is timid, and they worried about the Ramsey case because Hunter has shown a reluctance to go after high-profile suspects. Others say he fits right in with laissez-faire attitudes in Boulder, a liberal college town.
    "He's the most liberal and timid district attorney in Colorado," said former Denver prosecutor Craig Silverman. "That serves him well In Boulder, where they like liberal politicians."

    Among Hunter’s harshest critics is June Menger, the mother of University of Colorado student Sid Wells, who was killed in his condominium 15 years ago.
    Police arrested a roommate. Thayne Smlka, but Hunter and his staff concluded there wasn't enough evidence to press charges, so Smlka was released. The case drew attention In part because Wells, 22, was dating Robert Redford’s daughter.


    As the JonBenet case approaches two decades without justice, the Sid Wells case has just passed the three decade mark.
    The biggest reason for lack of justice in both cases is the fact that the same District Attorney was at the helm, Alex Hunter.
    A little more than a decade before the murder of JonBenét Ramsey, Boulder was on the map and in the media spotlight because of the 1983 slaying of Sid Wells. The death of a CU student was not what gave the case notoriety on the world stage. It wasn’t who Sid Wells was, it was who he’d been dating - actor Robert Redford's daughter, Shauna.
    Some 27 years later, a long overdue arrest warrant was issued for Wells's ex-roommate, Thayne Smika by Boulder DA, Stan Garnett.
    It may be argued that new statistical analysis providing a stronger link between the shotgun shells found in Smika’s possession and the pellets found in the skull of Sid Wells was the tipping point that resulted in an arrest warrant, the fact of the matter is that the case was strong enough for both prior District Attorneys to issue a warrant.
    It was Alex Hunter who allowed Smika to disappear, probably to Mexico, and who allowed the Ramseys to elude justice, in plain sight.
    Alex Hunter behaved in a cowardly and corrupt manner and yet he has not only remained unpunished but there are even those who defend him.
    The case against Thayne Smika while unquestionably “winnable,” would not have been a slam-dunk and therein was the problem for Alex Hunter.
    Hunter loved to hide behind BARD, (beyond a reasonable doubt.)
    Much like some hide behind a beard, AH would hide behind BARD. It was no more than a convenient excuse because he wasn’t interested in prosecuting any case other than one that was beyond all doubt.
    “Not enough evidence,” how convenient when facing the potential prospect of public humiliation on the world stage.
    I won’t review the evidence in the JonBenet case. The Grand Jury indicted the parents and Alex Hunter should have done the right thing and filed charges.
    A Grand Jury would have indicted Thayne Smika as well had Alex Hunter not subverted justice and prevented them from doing so.

    The next post presents an overview of the case against Smika:
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
  18. cynic

    cynic Member

    Smika case overview.

    From the CBI Cold Case Files:
    Case Type: Homicide Case Status: OPEN
    Victim: Sidney Lee Wells Gender: Male
    Date of Birth: 03/28/1961 Date of Death: 08/01/1983
    Incident Date: 08/01/1983 Age: 22
    Agency: Boulder Police Department City: Boulder
    Agency Case #: P83-7907 Judicial District: 20th Judicial District

    Where body found: Unit #560 of Spanish Towers in Boulder
    Suspect: Thayne A. Smika Race/Gender: White/Male
    Date of Birth: 2/27/1959
    HEIGHT: 5-11 WEIGHT: 150 pounds EYES: Hazel HAIR: Brown

    Sid Wells case timeline:
    Aug. 1, 1983: Sid Wells is found shot to death in his condominium in Boulder's Spanish Towers, 805 29th St. Police said Wells was forced to the floor and shot execution-style in the back of the head.
    Oct. 6, 1983: Police arrest Thayne Smika, who was living with Wells at the time of the crime, at his family home in Akron. The following week, Smika's mother posts a $100,000 bond, and Smika leaves the Boulder County Jail.
    Oct. 6 - Police arrest Thayne Smika, who was renting the condo, saying he got into an argument over rent money with Wells and shot him dead. Smika is taken into custody at his family home in Akron, and a shotgun and shells are seized from the home.
    Oct. 24, 1983: A grand jury convenes to investigate the homicide.
    Oct. 31, 1983: Then-Boulder County District Attorney Alex Hunter declines to charge Smika, saying there's not sufficient evidence to file charges.
    1985: The grand jury ends with no indictment.
    1986: Smika vanishes.
    1997: The case is reopened by two Boulder police officers saying they have new evidence, including new information from a witness and the FBI's lead analysis linking Smika's ammunition to what was found at the crime scene.
    1998 In the spring of 1998, police received one tip that Smika had been spotted in Ventura, Calif., and another that he was in Mexico after "48 Hours" aired information about the case.
    Boulder detectives flew to Ventura after getting a tip that Smika was working there in the construction business. They did not find Smika, but police have long suspected he was living in California under a new identity.
    1999: Hunter reviews the case again and declines (again) to issue an arrest warrant.
    2001: Newly elected District Attorney Mary Lacy reviews the case and concurs with Hunter that there is not enough evidence for an arrest warrant.
    2005: Boulder police receive a letter from the FBI stating that bullet-analysis science may not be as "definitive as the agency once thought.
    2007: The FBI's lead analysis is called into question after it's exposed that the type of test used was previously determined to be "unreliable and potentially misleading" by the National Academy of Sciences.
    2009: Newly elected District Attorney Stan Garnett says he'll review the case and consider running old evidence through new DNA tests.

    Synopsis from affidavit
    Sam Wells, (Sid Wells’ brother) found Sid’s body and called police at 12:28 PM, August 1, 1983. Police responded to the call at Wells' Spanish Towers condominium – unit #560.
    The case attracted worldwide attention when Redford halted production of his film, The Natural, and came to Boulder for Wells' funeral.
    Wells and Redford's daughter Shauna, then 22 years old, were both students at the University of Colorado and lived in the same building.
    Smika, who was often late with rent, was supposed to pay Wells the day he was killed, investigators said.
    On Friday, July 29th, 1983, Sid told Robert Sundell, a workmate and friend, that he had purchased a large quantity of cocaine and that some of the cocaine was now missing. Sid told him that he suspected Thayne Smika of being responsible, and that he had confronted Thayne.
    Prior to his murder, Sid told his best friend, Jeff Cohen, that he had purchased an ounce of cocaine so that he would be able to sell it to his friends. Jeff estimated the ounce had cost about $3,000 and he said he did not know where Sid had gotten the money for the purchase. The night before the murder, Jeff had been visiting Sid at his apartment and he recalled talking to Sid about the cocaine. Sid told Jeff that he suspected Thayne of stealing his cocaine. Sid also told Jeff that he had confronted Thayne about the theft and that Thayne had told him a story about “this other guy," (Craig Evans,) that had taken Sid’s drugs. Both Sid and Jeff agreed that the story was “concocted" by Thayne.
    Detectives did not observe any signs of forced entry into the apartment and there were no signs of a struggle with the exception of an over-turned chair and a glass-topped coffee table, situated at an angle to the couch and to the right of the body.
    At approximately 2:40 PM on August 1st, 1983, Dr. Kevin Hanley, a pathologist arrived at the crime scene. Hanley examined the body and indicated that Sid Wells had died of a gunshot wound to the head. It was later determined that Mr. Wells was killed with a single shot from a .20 gauge shotgun. Officers did not observe any firearms near the body or anywhere in the apartment. The then Boulder County Coroner estimated that Sidney Wells died at approximately 11:35 AM on August 1st, 1983.
    A neighbor, Mr. Eliot, spoke to police and advised that sometime between 11:20 and 11:45 AM, he heard a loud noise that could have been a door slam or a gunshot.
    Smika told detectives that he gave money and cocaine to Sid Wells, on the morning of Monday, August 1st, 1983, a deadline given to him by Sid. Smika advised that $300 of that money was given to Sid separately. Prior to delivering this money to Sid, Smika said he went to sleep at approximately 8AM on the morning of August 1st, 1983, setting his alarm for 10:00 AM.
    Smika acknowledged that he was to meet Sid at 11AM to give Sid rent money, and money and drugs he (Smika) claimed he had taken from Craig Evans. Smika said he shut off his alarm when it sounded and was next awakened by Sid Wells ringing the doorbell at 10:30-10:45 AM after spending the night at his girlfriend’s (Shauna Redford) apartment.
    According to Shauna Redford, Sid Wells was still in her apartment, and in bed, when she returned at approximately 10:50 AM. Shauna reminded Sid that he was to have lunch with his mother. He needed to get up if he was going to be on time. Shauna then left to run some errands. Smika advised that he did meet with Sid Wells and that he gave him rent money as well as money and drugs he (Smika) had taken from Craig Evans.
    Smika said that at 11:00 AM, he gave $300 in an envelope, 1/8 ounce of cocaine, and approximately $750 separate from the rent to Sid. Smika advised that Sid then left to go take a shower, and that he (Smika) then grabbed the rest of his stuff and left.
    Sid was to deliver the rent to his mother, June Wells, with whom he was to have lunch that same day at 12 noon. During an initial conversation, Smika told detectives that he had left at approximately 10:00 AM, but changed the time to 11:00 AM.
    Detectives had also engaged in a conversation with Thayne Smika on the evening of August 1st, 1983, that was not recorded. This conversation took place in the detectives’ car after Smika consented to return to Boulder from Akron. Smika told them that he had gone to Akron, Colorado, to visit his parents, do laundry, run some errands and get a haircut and permanent. He also said that he did not own a shotgun, but his father had given him one that he had not seen for approximately seven (7) years. He said he did not know where that gun was at that time.
    The amount of money and cocaine described by Thayne as being given to Sid was not found in apartment number 560, or on Sid’s person.
    A neighbor (Kathy Karmis) told police that at approximately 6:30 AM on August 1st, 1983, she observed Thayne Smika in the parking lot of Spanish Towers. He was carrying a green trash can with a black lid. She noted that Smika was carrying the can from the parking lot toward the apartments and he was carrying the can with both hands. She said that it seemed strange to her since Thayne, Sid and Sam never emptied their trash and their apartment was generally messy. Of the three roommates, Thayne was the least likely to take out the trash.
    The .20 gauge shotgun recovered from the Akron residence was found to have an overall length of approximately 46”. Broken down, the barrel itself was found to be approximately 26” long, the stock approximately 12”, and the action 22". Each of these pieces would fit in the trash can Kathy Karmis observed Thayne Smika carrying towards the apartment building the early morning hours of August 1, 1983. This trash can is approximately 28" in height not including space provided by the lid.
    At approximately 8:40 PM on August 3rd, 1983, following an interview with Tava Smika, police executed a Consent to Search from Darlene Smika at approximately 9:18 PM on August 3rd, 1983. Detectives found the following items in a basement bedroom identified by Tava as belonging to her brother Thayne:
    1. Montgomery Ward’s brand .20 gauge shotgun contained in a cardboard box found in the bedroom closet
    2. Gun cleaning kit found in bedroom closet
    3. Cleaning solution found in closet
    4. Two rounds of .20 gauge shotgun ammunition found in a pocket of a hunting vest hanging in the bedroom closet
    Police also observed what appeared to be freshly laundered clothing and a large blue duffel bag. These items were also taken into custody. As the shotgun box was removed from the bedroom closet, Tava Smika, Thayne’s younger sister, who remained present during the search, remarked that she had not seen that item before.

    A friend of Smika, Tina Arthur, said that in the weeks before the murder, Thayne was “definitely different." She said that she and her friends assumed it was because Thayne was doing “way too many drugs.” She thought that either Bruce or Tracy Johnson had approached Thayne to talk to him about his drug use. She was also aware of Thayne’s financial troubles as well as the insurance fraud he had committed prior to moving to Boulder.
    With regard to Thayne telling the police that he had gone to Akron to do his laundry on the day of the murder. Tina thought it was very odd because Thayne rarely visited his parents. During a telephone conversation with Mrs. Smika, Mrs. Smika told Tina that she “hadn't seen him in a while - Tina further advised that Thayne normally did his laundry at Spanish Towers and she had never seen him take his laundry out of the building.

    Firearm Evidence:
    The tests conducted, to determine that the two shells taken from Akron had been in the shotgun recovered in Akron, consisted of taking two additional shotgun shells and placing them into the Akron shotgun. The mechanism marks on the two sample rounds were compared to the mechanism marks found on the two shotgun shells recovered from Akron. The shells were compared microscopically, and it was Schrecker's opinion that there was a positive match. He said there was no doubt in his mind that the two rounds recovered in Akron in Thayne Smika’s hunting vest had been placed in and removed from the
    shotgun recovered from the Akron home. Detective Neitzel reviewed a report from the FBI Lab concerning the shotgun taken from the Akron home. According to this report, no blood was found on the shotgun and pellets recovered from the victim's head, based on weight and diameter, are number six (#6) shot.

    Fiber Evidence:
    The FBI Laboratory recovered an orange fiber from the shotgun box found at the Smika residence in Akron. Also submitted to the FBI were samples of carpet taken from the crime scene. A microscopic analysis was done to compare carpet from the crime scene and the orange fiber. The FBI reported that this fiber both microscopically and instrumentally matches the nylon fibers found in the composition of specimens K4, K6 and K7 (carpet samples from the crime scene hallway, living room and bathroom)

    A Confession:
    A friend of Smika, Bobbi Thorpe, related the following story: “We all went to the Dark Horse and it was the night they had two for one drinks...Thayne and I were sitting at one of those tables by the dance floor talking and Thayne was getting pretty drunk which he didn’t do a whole lot. I mean, he always usually had control and there was a bunch of glasses lined up and I remember this so vividly. There was a bunch of glasses and we were talking about, I was talking about something and it was some type ... I don’t even remember what it was, but it was like about brains being splattered. And he takes his glass and he goes, ‘Bobbi, you know I killed him, ' and he just slammed that glass. He just like pushed it into all the other glasses and the glasses just shattered.... And I looked at him and I go, ‘Oh, okay Thayne,' and it scared, it just scared me.”

    Just to recap, Smika, a slob, all of a sudden is seen with a trash can on the morning of the murder, and on the afternoon of the murder he develops a sudden urge to do laundry at his mother’s house in another city, the mother that he rarely visits unless it happens to be the day he shoots his roommate.
    He lies to police about owning a shotgun which just so happens to be the very type that was used to kill Sid Wells.
    The shotgun and shells which he “forgot” about just so happen to show up at his mother’s house.
    It is remarkable how many murderers develop both memory problems and an overwhelming desire to clean things, spontaneously, shortly after a crime is committed in which they are considered to be a suspect.
    Thayne Smika had the motive, means and opportunity. The case was solid and prosecutable. He should have been charged, but as Schiller reminds us, when you commit murder, (it doesn’t need to be perfect,) Boulder is the perfect town. At least it was under the reign of Alex Hunter.
    Yes, Smika should have Hunter on his Christmas card list. Smika should be in the “gray bar” not just any bar of his choosing in sunny Mexico, or California or wherever he happens to be.

    Steve Thomas recounts the sleazy backroom deal by Hunter:
    Then, from an anonymous source, I received a copy of a letter containing information on the cold case of one Thayne Smika, who had been arrested in the shotgun slaying of Sid Wells, the boyfriend of actor Robert Redford’s daughter. The accused murderer is today, in cop talk, ITW—in the wind—because District Attorney Alex Hunter secretly promised the defense attorney that the 1983 grand jury hearing the case would not indict Smika. The victim’s family, the investigating cops, and the grand jurors were not told of the deal. In the letter, an attorney named Dan Hale wrote that based on what he had seen, he reached the preliminary conclusion that “criminal acts were possibly committed during the grand jury investigation” and the stipulation agreed upon between Hunter and the defense lawyer “that certain witnesses would not be called and that no indictment would be returned. . . may be contempt of court.” Dan Hale later became a judge and stopped saying bad things about Alex Hunter. Hunter insisted that the Ramsey grand jury would not be under any stipulation similar to the deal he made in the Smika case.
    JonBenet: Inside the Ramsey Murder Investigation: Steve Thomas, page 394

    James Kolar confirms:
    We talked about the Thayne Smika case, Sid Wells murder, and Steve Thomas speaks to that in his book.
    I can tell you, I didn’t address it in mine but I was on the executive board of Boulder Police Benefit Association at the time that that case was being investigated, the Sid Wells homicide, by some happenstance we received materials through some correspondence that came to our association and it was an agreement between defense attorneys and the DA’s office that indicated that they would not ask certain questions in the Grand Jury process and our executive board debated long and hard about taking that information to the public as to what types of steps the DA’s office was taking to not solve that case. It’s pretty incredulous to think that you would call a Grand Jury to investigate a murder and then agree with the defense not to ask certain questions of witnesses.
    And I draw the comparison to the interview that blew me out of the chair in 1998 when the defense attorneys for the Ramsey team mentioned that the DA’s office had agreed not to pursue certain records in this instance in the JonBenet murder investigation calling them an island of privacy, that the family deserved some degree of privacy in this investigation, and that the DA’s office had agreed not to pursue certain records.
    Well, I think those records hold the key to this murder investigation and you can read between the lines in my book, in my treatise of this case and I think that’s where the answer lies and that’s where the resolution lies. But those records are probably beyond our reach legally here in the state of Colorado – perhaps not in another state but that is kind of the history that we’ve seen and complained about with the regime that operated under Alex Hunter’s tender at the DA’s office. Regrettably at the time we thought it was too complicated of an issue for the public to understand and we didn’t let that out. People voted Alex in for years and years as the continuing DA and unfortunately I think the result that we saw was an ineffectual prosecution or an investigation of this case based on the DA’s handling of it at the time.

    Tricia’s True Crime Radio, October 27, 2013

    In the investigation of University of Colorado student Sid Wells' gunshot death in 1983, the Boulder County District Attorney's Office asked a grand jury to "make no decision in this case on the issue of whether or not the suspect had murdered Sid Wells," according to court records of the grand jury proceeding later released under court order.
    Prosecutor Pete Maguire stated in an affidavit that he explained to the grand jury that he did not think there was enough evidence to file criminal charges.
    "After a period of deliberation the grand jury indicated that they would not request that they be allowed to vote and decide the issue of probable cause," according to Maguire's affidavit.

    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
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