There is NO Physical or Forensic Evidence linking me to this terrible crime. The Police have NEVER had ANY physical evidence proving I was at the scene of the crime, in the getaway car, that I handled the murder weapon or that I committed this horrific murder. NO DNA Evidence, NO Motive, NO Murder Weapon. The ONLY ‘evidence’ that the Police/Prosecutors presented to the court were False Witness Testimonies which I believe were in exchange for ‘no charge’ deals (read ‘Charges & Deals page of this website). My whole trial was founded on LIES with ZERO actual evidence presented to the court to prove my guilt or my involvement with the actual murder or burglary. I was convicted for life based on the lies of 2 young previous offenders testimonies, who were heavily implicated themselves (as physical evidence proved).
It was unfortunate that my greediness for flashy things lead the police to my door due to my use of the victims credit card. And you don’t need to tell me how foolish I was willingly using a stolen credit card however I did not know it belonged to a murdered man. If I had known that there is no way on this earth I would have touched it let alone kept it in my own house! I live with the guilt I used someone elses credit card and its punishment every single second of my life in this tiny concrete cell. I have lost my life, my freedom and the chance to ever be a husband or father due greed for a pair of new sneakers and a few items of sportswear. How foolish am I! If the police department had just used common sense and followed the evidence they had in front of them I would NOT be sitting here now (in prison) 20 years later and for the remainder of my life. How did the victims car travel 1 1/2 miles AFTER his murder (as the getaway vehicle) and my fingerprints/DNA NOT be in or on the vehicle? The States 2 Star Witnesses (Mike Enis and Terry Portman) claim ‘we’ were ALL in that car – NO DNA of mine backs their claim up. However latent prints were found in that car (this fact is mentioned in police reports). Yet there is no evidence police ever bothered to test those latent prints to see who they actually belonged to. They tested mine against those prints and the results were negative yet why didnt they bother to run them through their database or test them against Mike Enis and Terry Portman fingerprints when both boys admitted to being at the crime scene, being in the car and who both have a previous conviction for robbery? Or did the police infact match those prints to both witnesses and hide this evidence from the investigation and my defence counsel? The results of any lab testing are conveniently ‘missing’ from police files so I guess we shall never know. What police could have known and could have easily found out is who was sitting where in that car depending on whose prints were found where. Mike and Terry claim I was driving. My prints weren’t found anywhere in the car or on the car. Heck not even a skin cell or hair trace was found of mine in the car or on the car. Yet prints were found – a report/lab test could have easily identified who was actually driving. Springfield police didn’t think this was important. Mike and Terry also claim ‘we’ spent hours in the victims home before Mr Thomas was killed, yet again though NO DNA traces nor fingerprints of mine were ever found in that house. How is that possible? Surely if I had been in that house that night (or EVER) they would find traces of me (DNA)? Mike and Terry eagerly admitted to police during questioning that they would find their DNA and fingerprints all over the victims home. After recovering the police files of this investigation it has recently become clear Springfield police failed to take one single fingerprint from that whole crime scene. This is not because they couldnt (because the crime scene had been cleaned or wiped by the murderer) it is because they didn’t bother! In a capital murder investigation a whole police team and their crime scene unit didn’t bother dusting a crime scene for any fingerprints. No door handles, door frames, drinking cups etc were ever tested for fingerprints. There were cigarette butts in an ashtray found near the victims head – not even those butts were tested for DNA. This was 1996 and the use of DNA testing and fingerprint taking at crime scenes was common practice. DNA could have been taken from any number of sources from that crime scene (bathrooms/drinking cups/butt ends) and many surfaces could have been dusted down for fingerprints. The police didn’t even try. If they had I know 100% not one of those fingerprints or DNA samples found would have been mine yet they most certainly would have found and identified the real killer.
NO Murder Weapon was EVER found. NO gunpowder residue/traces were found on me (my skin) or my clothes. My clothes (and winter coat) I wore were tested thoroughly for traces of victim DNA and gunpowder residue traces. NO traces of either were found (forensic lab representative testified to this in court). None of the victims personal belongs (that had been stolen from his home the night of the crime) was EVER found in my possession or in my home, (this includes stolen car keys, money) – apart from that credit card which I have always truthfully maintained I was given by the 2 State Star Witnesses Mike Enis and Terry Portman. That credit card was found in my possession. NOTHING else. It it was the only piece of evidence that linked me to this crime. Doesn’t it stand to reason that I was NOT part of this murder? These aren’t my words. These are the words of the police evidence which they chose to ignore. Not to mention Police knew already that Mike and Terry had previous convictions for robbery and assault in the same neighbourhood as this crime. And the police were aware of information that both boys had a somewhat fractured/volatile relationship with the victim. Only weeks/months prior to his murder both boys has been seen throwing bricks at the victims windows and both boys had been banned from the victims home by the victim himself. Terry and the victim had only recently been involved in an assault with each other. Police knew all of this evidence. They chose to ignore it.
The Victims Car
Mike and Terry claimed that I stole the victims car (from his house) and drove it towards them both (after they fled the scene). They claimed I picked both of them up (1 1/2 miles away) and I drove them to their Aunts (Bridgette Johnson) house. They claimed I was in the victims car driving. NO DNA evidence to support their claim has EVER been found. The police also claimed in their investigation they had other eye witnesses saying they saw me get out of that car. Here are actual quotes/statements given in court when the police Sergeant was questioned about this so called DNA evidence and eye-witness reports they claim to have had to prove me guilty. The police told me whilst questioning me they had my DNA in that car and eye witnesses to prove it
*DNA testing can be done to search for ‘gloved’ fingerprints/smudging. NONE of mine were found in or on the car (including the steering wheel). However what we do know now is that Graeber did have a report that latent prints HAD been found in that car. He failed to tell the court this and also failed to tell the court who those prints had belonged to. If he had would the Jury still have found me guilty beyond reasonable doubt? I believe they would not have. This is one of many pieces of evidence the police and prosecutor withheld from court.
Here Mike Enis in court confirms that Police had told him that they HAD found my DNA in the victims car. He was told this whilst being questioned/giving his statements to the police
The Police had one piece of evidence that they strongly believed proved that I was at the victims house/murdered him and stole his car. This was the victims stolen car keys. At my home the police found the victims credit card (on a small ledge in an attic room in my bedroom) and a set of 2 keys (in my bedroom dresser draw). These keys belonged to my friend Deena Cox car (they were copies she had given me). I maintained throughout questioning that I did not have the victims car keys and it was impossible for me to have those keys as I had never been in the victims car (as proven by no DNA traces) and I had never been in his home (as proven by no DNA traces). However the police were absolutely adamant the keys they found in my home belonged to the victim . Here are actual quotes/statements of my interview with police (in police custody) regarding their find.
- Please note the gun mentioned here was the victims stolen gun (NOT the murder weapon) which Mike and Terry had given me along with the credit card as repayment for them borrowing my gun (which they ‘lost’). Read ‘My Timeline of Events’ for further details.
During my trial the car keys were brought in as evidence of my guilt. When asked if the police had proof the keys belonged to the victims car during court it became very apparent the police had not bothered/deemed it unnecessary to actually check. During trial the judge ordered the police to do as such. Which we all know should have been done immediately on finding these keys during the investigation. Later the police returned to court to admit the keys did NOT belong to the victims car nor any of the victims properties. To get round this embarrassing blunder the prosecutor went on to tell the Jury that the victim must have recently had all the locks on all his properties changed hence why these keys now didnt work. Absolute garbage! Obviously the Jury decided to believe this explanation over the obvious one being the keys had nothing to do with the victim nor this crime.
Below are trial transcripts clearly showing a Police Detective being questioned about the car keys that were found by police in my home. Here the Detective admits in a court of law that they (the police) just assumed that the car keys belonged to the victims car but had NOT bothered at any stage of the investigation to find out if the keys did actually fit/match the victims car.
Since this website was first written we now have access to police files relating to their investigation. In the file we were shocked to find a receipt of property police report in connection to the keys found at Jermanes home during their search. Jermane has always believed the keys they found were the only 2 keys he had in his bedroom which were 2 keys on a single looped ring belonging to his friends cadillac. Both of which he kept in his bedroom dresser draw. He has always maintained he hid the credit card on the ledge in the attic where police recovered it. However this police receipt report is alarmingly different to Jermanes account of those keys. In trial police told the court they had found the keys on that same ledge in the attic along with the credit card and not in the dresser draw (in fact no dresser draw was mentioned). The most alarming discovery is that on the receipt report it describes the keys found at Jermanes as being ‘4 keys in a leather case with a rabbits foot keyring’. No mention of 2 keys. And the keys Jermane did own had no rabbits foot keyring nor leather key case. Jermane is adamant these keys were NOT in his bedroom or attic space nor had he ever seen them before. Regardless of what keys the police found or used as evidence to link Jermane to this crime NONE of the keys in this case or trial fitted any car or property connected to Mr Bertram Thomas.
My Winter Coat
Whilst I was being interviewed by the police (right at the very start, all those years ago) I asked many times for them to submit me to any and all gunshot residue testing available because I knew I had NOT fired a gun at any time. What’s absurd (and goes further to show that the Police had either no idea what they were doing or they had no wish to try to find the REAL Killer and preferred to pin it on me regardless of the truth) the idea of testing my clothes for DNA was MY idea. The police had made no suggestion they wanted to/cared about or were interested in taking my clothes to test for DNA/Gunpowder Residue – they didn’t seen concerned about such evidence of proof and it was left to ME to suggest to them to take my clothes and test for evidence. It takes the actual person being accused to come up with suggestions to prove their innocence. During the course of the trial it was revealed that everything I had stated during my very 1st interview in those very first few hours of custody (and all those that followed) came to be true (and evidence or lack of it supported my words).
I only owned one winter coat. It was December in Ohio and it was cold. There is NO QUESTION that I would have been wearing my thick winter coat that night. In fact police records make note that someone under questioning (I believe it to be Mike or Terry) give police details of the winter coat I wear. This exact coat (after I had to repeatedly ask police to take it as evidence and get tested) was thoroughly examined (by experts). The coat was literally cut up into little pieces so that even the insides of the lining of each pocket was tested for DNA (victim/blood splatter) and Gun Powder Residue. It was revealed in court by a forensic representative that there was NO WAY that I fired a gun at point-blank range. NO gunshot blow back or blood spatter from the victim was found anywhere on my coat. Experts said that IF I had fired a gun and then placed that gun inside my coat pockets (like Mike and Terry had testified I did) then traces of gun powder residue WOULD have been traced on my coat. In fact due to the method of Mr Thomas death (he was shot at close range) the expert would have expected to find blood splatter on the outside of my coat AND traces of it inside my coat (in the pockets) after I would have put the gun in my pockets (splatter would have transferred on to the weapon and into my pockets). NOT ONE trace of gun powder residue nor blood splatter was found on or in my coat. FACT! Mike Enis and Terry Portman who admit to being at the crime scene during the crime did not have their clothes/skin tested for gun powder residue or blood splatter at any time! They nor their clothes were ever even tested by Police. Someone in that house that night killed Mr Thomas, DNA TESTING PROVES I WASN’T THERE AND I DIDN’T DO IT! So would it not stand to reason that the 2 people who admit to being at that house during the crime SHOULD have had their clothes tested too? None of the boys clothes/coats or skin was EVER tested for incriminating DNA. It was revealed in court (by Hasheem Stevens who was present with me at Bridgette Johnsons home the night of the murder) that he remembered Mike and Terry running upstairs to get changed immediately on returning home. He must have told this to the police when he was questioned so why didn’t the police find this odd and search the Aunts home for the boys clothes? I remember vividly both boys returning to their Aunts home that night both wide eyed and excitable. When they entered the house they did indeed run up stairs immediately and I remember them taking it in turns in the bathroom. Yet the police didn’t deem that to be even remotely suspicious and yet again deemed these actions (by the 2 State Star Witnesses)and the words of other witnesses present at the Aunts house to be completely irrelevant to their investigation.
To add even more insult to injury when the police interviewed Mike and Terry they did so for less than 35 minutes in a MURDER enquiry! After 1 brief 35 minute interview each (bearing in mind they are interviewing 2 people who admit to being at a murder scene) they were sent home never to be interviewed again until the beginning of my trial some 9 to 10 months later. A man is murdered in his home, 2 boys willingly admit to being present at the murder scene during the murder and both boys having also had previous dealings with the police for assault and robbery and they are only questioned for 35 minutes and every word uttered from their mouths is believed on the spot without any proof to back up its validity. Their words were treated as gospel by Springfield police. Please also note at this stage the Police had not yet spoken to me (taken my statement). The police made up their mind after 35 minutes that I was guilty and the 2 boys were completely innocent and set them free.
NO DNA evidence, NO physical evidence, NO forensic evidence, NO eye witnesses, NO murder weapon and NO motive.
Since obtaining copies of Springfield Police files in relation to the investigation of this case. It has become apparent there were a number of key pieces of physical evidence the police were aware of and in possession of that they failed to investigate and in some cases even document. This is withholding evidence and is a crime in itself. Without a doubt if police had tested these particular 2 pieces of physical evidence detailed below it would have gone a long way in finding out who the real killer was. Not only did the police not test crucial physical evidence they also didn’t document the discovery of it. ALL physical evidence found on a victim or at crime scene must be documented. Springfield Police did not follow correct procedures and therefore withheld crucial physical evidence from the investigation, my defence and the Jury.
The autopsy of Bertram Thomas was carried out by Dr Stewart on the 7th December 1996 – present at this autopsy were various Police Detectives from Springfield Police Dept. No body trace evidence collection or testing was ever done on the victim͛s body or his clothes (apart from a baseball cap). That is how the documentation reads in the police files at least. However it has come to my attention via the Clark County OH coroner officeFibres/hairs were
found during the autopsy (I have photographic evidence that these fibres/hairs exist) yet these
fibres/hairs were NEVER documented on any police file/pathology or autopsy report/document.
Neither were they mentioned at any time during trial. They were never recorded as evidence and
never passed to the crime lab for testing. None of the victim͛s clothes were tested (apart from a
baseball cap), nor are there any records/notes or reports detailing any attempt to collect any trace
evidence from the victim͛s body or clothes. Where have these fibres/hairs gone and why were they
not documented, passed to the crime lab and tested or even investigated? I have copies of ͚chain of
custody͛ medical reports relating to the victims clothing. They show that the victims clothing was
merely bagged/tagged and passed over to Springfield Police without any attempt of any form of
trace evidence testing being carried out on them beforehand. There is NO documentation to show
these clothes underwent any form of trace tests. The police files show no documentation of any
attempt by police to pass any of the victim͛s clothes to the crime lab for further testing either. There