Charges dismissed against man accused of shooting his wife and claiming it was suicide

Charges dismissed against man accused of shooting his wife and claiming it was suicide

Thomas Harry Jackson

I originally posted about the murder of Courtney Jackson here. She was the mother from Falcon, Colorado who died after being shot twice in the head. Her husband, 45-year-old Thomas Harry Jackson allegedly told police dispatchers that his wife was suicidal and that she shot herself during the call to 911 except no shots were heard during the call. Police then arrested Thomas Jackson after discovering two bullet wounds in Courtney’s head. Because, you know, it’s nigh impossible for someone to kill themselves twice as the coroner has said that either shot would have killed Courtney. You would think that this would be an open and shut case, but not so fast.

This past Friday, prosecutors dropped all charges against Thomas Jackson citing a lack of evidence. I’m trying to be calm and rational about this but seriously, what the fuck? Now I know I’m no legal expert but investigators couldn’t find sufficient evidence in the three months that Jackson has been held in custody? Courtney’s body was reportedly found 17 feet from where the shell casings and her blood were found and Thomas Jackson is said to have no other explanation as to what happened.

This doesn’t mean that Jackson is free and clear though. Jackson’s own attorney has said that murder charges could be brought against Jackson again if the evidence warrants it as Courtney’s murder is still being treated as an open investigation. However, for now, this animal is walking around and probably living in the house where he was accused of killing his wife. And what exactly is stopping this miscreation from fleeing the country?

While I’m normally very pro-police, the investigators involved in this case better step up their game before this becomes an absolute clusterfuck and there’s no justice to be had for Courtney Jackson.

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If you are or have been a victim of domestic violence, even once, get out of the relationship as fast as you can even if it’s with just the clothes on your back. It doesn’t matter if they say it won’t happen again or they say they love you, they will continue to abuse you. If you can’t reach out to a friend or family member to help please contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) or at their website at https://www.thehotline.org/.

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If a crime has happened to you or someone you know and you think it deserves more attention than it’s getting, please contact me.

 

MISSING: Jayme Closs

MISSING: Jayme Closs

I normally don’t do missing person stories. I usually leave them for the armchair sleuths of the internet. I am no sleuth, but if I can help get the word out even a little bit, then I do what I can.

Back in October, someone entered the home of 13-year-old Jayme Closs in Barron, Wisconsin. In just four minutes Jayme’s parents, James, and Denise Closs, were shot to death and Jayme had been kidnapped. She has been missing ever since.

The FBI is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the whereabouts of Jayme Closs.

If you have any information regarding the whereabouts of Jayme Closs, or if you have had contact with Closs, please contact the Barron County Sheriff’s Office tip line at 1-855-744-3879. You may also contact your local FBI office, or the nearest American Embassy or Consulate. Submit an anonymous Tip online

I have no great insight to give on this case. By most reports, all leads have been pursued and have come up empty. The only thing I can offer is that if the person or persons responsible for this heinous crime have left the state of Wisconsin, they will more than likely be eligible for the federal death penalty since murder committed during a kidnapping is a capital crime. However, Wisconsin itself does not have the death penalty.

Like everyone else, I hope and pray that Jayme is still alive and will be found safely.

Thanks to Debi for the tip.

(Sources)
Post Crescent
Daily Mail

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If you or someone you know lives in a small town or neighborhood and knows of a crime that you think deserves more attention than it’s getting, please contact me.

Facebook hammer killer resentenced

Facebook hammer killer resentenced

Tyler Hadley

In 2011, a then 17-year-old Tyler Hadley of Port St. Lucie, Florida, killed both of his parents with a claw hammer before dragging their bodies to their bedroom. While the bodies of  Mary Jo and Blake Hadley remained in the bedroom, Tyler Hadley threw a party for all of his Facebook friends. He even showed one of his friends the corpses of his murdered parents.

While in prison he gave out autographs to other prisoners signed ‘Hammer Time’ Hadley was charged as an adult and pleaded no contest to their murders. Subsequently, he was sentenced to two consecutive life sentences. However, his sentence was thrown out after the Supreme Court ruled that minors couldn’t be sentenced to mandatory life sentences without the possibility of parole.

Last week a new sentence was handed down for Hadley and it was a lesser sentence, however, it may be unlikely Hadley would ever be a free man. The sentence he received this time was two concurrent life sentences.

The judge presiding over the sentencing had this to say…

“The defendant displayed perverse premeditation, heartless cruelty and savagery, extreme violence, a willingness to mutilate and absolute depravity,” the judge declared. “Considering the victims were blood relatives and were killed up close and personally with a handheld tool, it’s obvious the defendant was fueled by a long, simmering, passionate hatred toward those who loved him the most.”

I’m satisfied that Hadley received two life sentences although I would have preferred them to be served consecutively again. It was also good to see a maniac like this put away for life despite the best efforts of the Supreme Court. Personally, I have no problem with minors being sentenced to LWOP for certain offenses like premeditated murder. If a teenager doesn’t understand that murder is not only illegal but inherently wrong then they’re too stupid to be among the rest of us anyway.

Craigslist ‘hitman’ who killed 19-year-old Colorado girl enters into plea agreement

Craigslist 'hitman' who killed 19-year-old Colorado girl enters into plea agreement

Joseph Michael Lopez

To briefly recap the murder of 19-year-old Natalie Bollinger from  Broomfield, Colorado, reportedly, the despondent Bollinger took out an ad on craigslist last year asking someone to kill her. Friends say that Natalie Bollinger had mental health issues and was suicidal along with having a drug habit.

That does not excuse 22-year-old Joseph Michael Lopez from what he did. Lopez responded to the ad and had no problem shooting Natalie in the head with a gun that she supposedly provided. Further evidence that people who troll craigslist for such ads are a bizarre breed.

Unfortunately, last month prosecutors offered Lopez a plea deal that would spare him a sentence of life without parole.  This went against the wishes of Natalie’s family, however, I speculated that the plea deal was offered because the unusual nature of Natalie’s murder may have caused a jury to have had some reasonable doubt about a conviction.

Earlier this month, Lopez entered into the plea deal, pleading guilty to second-degree murder. He was then subsequently sentenced to 48-years behind bars. Again, in a perfect world, Lopez should have been sentenced to death for indifferently fulfilling the wishes of a mentally ill and vulnerable woman, His behavior was nothing short of sociopathic and if justice were to be truly served then Lopez would never enjoy a breath of outside air ever again.

Illinois craigslist killer resentenced

Illinois craigslist killer resentenced

Timothy Smith

In 2011, Timothy Smith of Woodstock, Illinois,  shot and killed 48-year-old Kurt Milliman. Smith was prostituting his wife on craigslist out of their home and Milliman allegedly got to rough with Smith’s wife. Smith jumped out of hiding and shot Milliman. The couple tried concocting a home invasion story to try to hide their activity. However, investigators saw through the ruse and Smith was convicted of murder in 2013 and sentenced to 50 years behind bars.

In 2015, Smith was granted a new trial on the grounds that the judge at his trial did not allow an involuntary manslaughter charge to be considered by the jury.  It was to no avail, however, as late last month, Smith was once again sentenced to 50 years behind bars for a conviction of first-degree murder. Smith has to serve his entire sentence without the possibility of parole.

Townville Elementary gunman pleads guilty to school shooting and murder of father

Townville Elementary gunman pleads guilty to school shooting and murder of father

To be honest I haven’t been paying too much attention to what’s been going on with the Townville Elementary school shooting lately. For those of you who may not remember, back in September of 2016, 14-year-old Jesse Osborne shot and killed his father, 47-year-old Jeffrey Dewitt Osborne, before taking his father’s truck and driving it to the school.

Osborne opened fire on the school and struck three students before his gun jammed. Tragically, 6-year-old Jacob Hall died from his injuries days after the shooting. The last bit of news I heard about the shooting before this post was back in April of this year when it was announced that Osborne was being charged as an adult.

Fast forward to yesterday when it was made public that the now 16-year-old Osborne has pleaded guilty to two counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder. Since he’s been charged as an adult, Osborne is facing a potential maximum sentence of two life sentences without the possibility of parole, plus 90 years. Prosecutors have no intentions of cutting him any deals either.  Tenth Circuit Solicitor David Wagner said the following…

“The State will not be entering into any plea deals with Jesse Osborne. I am seeking the maximum sentence in this case, life without parole, which is the appropriate sentence for the murder of six-year-old Jacob Hall, and the attempted murders of his classmates and teachers.”

For all of those who may be sympathetic towards Osborne and say that the sentence is too tough, save your sympathy for Jacob Hall who didn’t even know his attacker and spent his last remaining days in a hospital bleeding to death.

Osborne is expected to sentenced sometime in Spring or Summer of 2019.

Colorado mother killed in domestic violence shooting

Colorado mother killed in domestic violence shooting

Thomas Jackson

Back in October, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office responded to the home of Thomas and Courtney Jackson. Thomas Jackson told deputies that his wife was suicidal but Courtney Jackson denied the allegation. Previously, deputies had been to the home in Falcon, Colorado, in prior weeks due to the Jacksons accusing each other of domestic assault. Unfortunately, deputies claim they did not have sufficient evidence to make an arrest. Sadly, the night after the suicide allegations, deputies would be returning to the home as Courtney laid dead from a gunshot wound.

The night of the shooting Thomas Jackson called 911 once again claiming his wife was suicidal and that his wife shot herself during the call. No gunshots were heard during the 911 call. Courtney Jackson had sustained two gunshots to the head with the coroner stating that either gunshot could have killed her. This led deputies to arrest Thomas Jackson and charge him with first-degree murder under the belief that Jackson allegedly shot his wife after she threatened to leave him. He is being held without bond.

I have no tolerance for domestic abusers, or as we used to call them back in my day, wife-beaters before that became an ironic name for a type of undershirt. Most of my childhood was spent witnessing domestic violence on an all too regular basis. As I’ve stated before, my father used to beat my mother usually after a night of his excessive drinking. No one outside the home ever knew. Not extended members of my family, not the neighbors, no one. I lived in fear of my father because of his treatment of my mom. It’s only by the grace of God that she wasn’t killed even though she never left him. They were separated at times but my mom would always go back. I don’t know what caused it but one day my dad never beat my mom again and she stayed with him until his death. However, my dad is the exception to the rule. The majority of abusers never change and will never stop.

There’s also another victim in all of this and that’s Courtney Jackson’s 9-year-old daughter. Thanks to the actions of an insecure coward her mother is dead and her father will likely spend the rest of his life in prison. Luckily, if that word can even be used in this manner, from what I understand, she has loving grandparents to take care of her but losing your parents in any capacity is devastating especially at such a young age.

If you are or have been a victim of domestic violence, even once, get out of the relationship as fast as you can even if it’s with just the clothes on your back. It doesn’t matter if they say it won’t happen again or they say they love you, they will continue to abuse you. If you can’t reach out to a friend or family member to help please contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) or at their website at https://www.thehotline.org/.

(Sources)

Colorado Springs Gazette 1
KKTV
Colorado Springs Gazette 2

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If you or someone you know lives in a small town or neighborhood and knows of a crime that you think deserves more attention than it’s getting, please contact me.

12-year-old unsolved arson murder of 8-year-old girl

12-year-old unsolved arson murder of 8-year-old girl

Mackenzie Branham

After receiving this story from friend of the site UberSpork, I was hesitant about posting this story. Passions seem to be high in the area where the crime took place and there has been a lot of drama surrounding it. I was afraid of inviting some of that drama on to the site but I decided to go ahead with the post anyway because at the heart of it a little girl’s murder has gone unsolved for 12-years.

In 2006, in Jeffersonville, Ohio, 8-year-old Mackenzie Branham died in a fire at her mother’s home that investigators ruled as arson. Mackenzie’s mother and her boyfriend were able to escape the blaze but claimed the fire was too intense to save Mackenzie. Since the fire, no arrests have been made and last year it was made public that evidence in the case that potentially contained DNA evidence was destroyed three months into the investigation and was never reported. Specifically, the clothes Mackenzie was wearing the night of the fire had been destroyed and Mackenzie’s father, Donald Branham,  didn’t find this out until last year. That’s 11-years without knowing that evidence that could potentially identify your daughter’s killer had been destroyed.

There are other aspects and accusations of the story that I’m not comfortable getting into since while they are feasible the accusations have not been legally been proven. However, it should be mentioned that Donald Branham has been cleared of any wrongdoing.

A child’s murder, especially one in such a horrific manner, should not go unsolved this long.

Anyone with information about the deadly arson is asked to call the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office at 740-335-6170.

If you or someone you know lives in a small town or neighborhood and knows of a crime that you think deserves more attention than it’s getting, please contact me.

 

Plea deal offered to craigslist ‘hitman’ who killed 19-year-old girl

Plea deal offered to craigslist 'hitman' who killed 19-year-old girl

Joseph Michael Lopez

I originally posted about the bizarre craigslist killing of 19-year-old Natalie Bollinger of Broomfield, Colorado, here. It’s alleged that Natalie was despondent and suicidal, according to her friends, and she took out an on craigslist looking for a hitman to kill her. 22-year-old Joseph Michael Lopez is said to have responded to the ad posing as a hitman and shot Natalie in the back of the head.

Now, it’s being reported that Lopez has been offered a plea deal against the wishes of Natalie’s family. Lopez is expected to plead guilty to 2nd-degree murder with a 50-year sentence and a possibility for parole. Natalie’s family is not having it…

“We said no and they still offered it to him today. Our family does not agree with this or is willing to do any plea bargain. I’m dumbfounded. I’m so disappointed in the legal system in Adams County,” said Ted Bollinger, Natalie’s father.

Can you blame him? If this was my daughter I’d be pushing for a death sentence which Colorado has only used once since it was reinstated in 1974.

In my opinion, Lopez should receive at least a life sentence without the possibility of parole. Even if the hitman story is true, just because someone who may be suicidal asks you to kill them, obviously, doesn’t mean you should. It takes a depraved indifference to just callously kill a complete stranger that you met through craigslist. And again, if craigslist actually moderated their site, if Natalie did place an ad it would never have come to Lopez’s attention.

I’m curious as to why the state is offering Lopez a plea deal. I guess the story is strange enough that it could possibly cast a modicum of reasonable doubt onto a jury.

Lopez is expected to enter his plea on December 3rd.

Virginia man killed in LetGo robbery, suspect still at large

Virginia man killed in LetGo robbery, suspect still at large

Joshua Grey

It’s been a while since I posted about a craigslist-like murder. In my absence, I’ve probably missed more than a few. Unfortunately, another one has happened recently. Last week, 23-year-old Joshua Grey was shot and killed after listing his iPhone for sale on the marketplace app LetGo. Joshua was said to have met his assailant alone at a local intersection in Richmond, Virginia. The killer shot Joshua and then took his iPhone. Joshua was able to get to a nearby convenience store where he tragically died from his injuries.

Police in Richmond have released surveillance video of Joshua’s alleged killer and are looking for the public’s help in bringing the man to justice. The video can be seen at this link. Richmond Police are asking for the public’s help in finding Joshua’s killer.

Anyone with any information about this homicide to call Major Crimes Detective T. Coates at (804) 646-0729 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or at http://www.7801000.com. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

Again I have to stress that if you use any classifieds site or app it’s imperative that you meet the other person involved in the transaction at a local police department. Many police stations have set up public meeting zones at their locations to better protect those buying and selling through classifieds. Some of these websites and apps have even set up listings of safe places to conduct these transactions. As I’ve said in the past, the old rules don’t apply anymore. Just meeting someone in public during the day isn’t enough anymore as the thieves and killers who inhabit sites like craigslist and apps like LetGo have stepped up their aggression in recent years leaving hundreds of bodies in their wake.