SBSD Warned DCFS to Stay Away from Family During Timeline? – MB #248

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SBSD Warned DCFS to Stay Away from Family During Timeline? – MJEOL Bullet #248 New details about the accusing family along with social workers who appear on the defense witness list FEB 25 2005 — With opening statements set to begin Monday, Feb 28 2005, truly stunning and suspicious new details in the Michael Jackson so-called “case” have come out recently. And we’re not talking about the hackneyed media terms here. These are really huge bombshells. Two reports, one from NBC’s Mike Taibbi and another from Celebrity Justice (CJ) provide much more insight into the accusing family’s past and the goings-on of this “case” before it materialized. The Taibbi report talks about the accuser’s past history of accusing his mother of abuse. No, that’s not a typo. Apparently, in the past, the accuser broke down to a teacher and said that his mother was beating him. The teacher, being a mandatory child abuse reporter, contacted the Dept. of Child and Family Services (DCFS). They began an investigation into the family. The boy later recanted the allegations, but it’s highly possible that this will play a huge role in illustrating how the accuser changes his stories and will speak to his credibility. More on that info will be discussed in the future (see Accuser has history of changing his story – MSNBC). Probably the more astonishing bombshell, with all sorts of implications, comes from CJ. They got their hands on information about what happened before this “case” came to fruition. According to their Feb 23 2005 article “Sheriffs Cleared Jackson before Charging Him”, a two month investigation by the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Dept (SBSD) cleared him of these molestation allegations, as reported by Mike Taibbi almost a year earlier. However, there now comes word that the sheriff’s department called child services and told them not to interview this family. This would make the second independent investigation done right during the prosecution’s timeline which has cleared Jackson of these allegations. The first investigation being the one done by LA Department of Child & Family Services (DCFS, also known as “Child Services”) and child services workers (CSW, also known as social workers). The story about a SBSD investigation was first broken almost a year ago by NBC’s Mike Taibbbi. He reported the investigation lasted from Feb 18 2003 to April 16 2003. Note the dates. It starts right in the middle of the prosecution’s conspiracy/abuse timeline. And it goes at least a month past that point where prosecutors claim the “conspiracy” ended. This is also weeks after the family allegedly “escaped” from Neverland. For at least a month, the family was away from Neverland, according to prosecutors. They’d fled in the middle of the night from Neverland with the help of someone working there, according to prosecutors. However, this is a time where the accusing family apparently preferred to have their civil lawyer (Bill Dickerman) writing threatening letters to Jackson’s then-attorney, Mark Geragos about property instead of going to the police and pressing kidnapping charges. The March 12 2004 Taibbi report stated that the children and even their father were interviewed during that first police investigation. The case was closed “with no further action required” (see More Questions about the 1st Santa Barbara Investigation?-Bullet#138). Taibbi’s report says the investigation was sparked by another regular Jackson detractor, Carole Lieberman. The report was re-broadcast on MSNBC’s Scarborough Country on March 12 2004. From that Scarborough Country transcript:

TAIBBI (on camera): But you are about to hear why those charges were called unfounded and NBC News can now report exclusively that just two weeks after that documentary aired, Santa Barbara County Sheriff‘s Department began its own official investigation of possible abuse by Michael Jackson of the alleged victim and that Dr. Lieberman‘s letter of complaint was the key reason the probe was started. (see Scarborough Country: SBSD 2 month investigation (March 12 2004))

Taibbi says he and his producer spent hours transcribing sections of the documents (docs) they got ahold of for this report. Interestingly enough, in the child services investigation, the mother does confirm that the children are “never solely alone with Jackson; there is always someone around.” This, too, was said by Geragos during the 60 Minutes interview with Jackson. If that’s the situation, it would be explosive testimony and one way to prove Jackson’s innocence. The report and follow-up interviews by CJ’s Harvey Levin and Jane Valez-Mitchell provide even more detail to this story. In the aforementioned Feb 23 2005 CJ article, they say that the three social workers who interviewed the family on Feb 20 2003 received a phone call from the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Dept. at 3 PM the same day, but after they had already talked to the family. A lieutenant told the child services workers not to interview this particular family. From the report:

“CJ” Executive Producer Harvey Levin reports that the three social workers returned to their office, only to get an unusual phone call at 3:00 p.m. the same day. According to Levin’s sources, a lieutenant from the Santa Barbara County Sheriffs Department called and said, “Do not interview the boy or his family.” According to the source, the social workers were puzzled. They had “never gotten a request like that before.” (see Sheriffs Cleared Jackson Before Charging Him – CJ + Video)

The request is highly suspicious to a number of observers. How in the world did the sheriff’s department know the DCFS had begun an investigation into this family to the point where they would call DCFS the very same day and tell them to keep away from the family? Did the family themselves call the sheriff’s department and tell them they had been talked to by the DCFS? If the family did contact someone in the sheriff’s department during the prosecution’s “conspiracy”/”kidnapping” timeline, what does that person have to say? What authority would the sheriff’s department have over ordering the DCFS not to carry out a thorough investigation of this family? Why would they be warned to stay away from this particular family? Is there something about this family that they didn’t want known? And all of this is suspicious as hell mainly because this family is claiming to have been “held hostage” and “threatened” to a point where they were supposed to be sent out of the country to a place with “no Americans” and “no phones”. So why would the SBSD be warning these social workers away from this family? Why wouldn’t the sheriff’s department want them to investigate and possibly help this kid in case he was being molested? If it comes to the worse, was there someone of some type of authority helping this family set this plan up against Jackson?? It seems highly unusual that there would be an open investigation by the SBSD (Feb 18 2003 – April 2003), and an investigation by the DCFS (Feb 14 2003 – Feb 27 2003) where someone in the SBSD knew almost immediately that the family was being investigated and took action to try to stop it. According to the CJ article, their sources say these social workers forwarded their Feb 20 2003 interview with the family to the sheriff’s department. As a part of the sheriff’s department’s 2-month investigation, detectives investigated the matter and closed the case. This detective or detectives may be on the defense’s witness list. These sources also tell CJ that at least one of the detectives involved on that Feb – April 2003 investigation had been fired by the sheriff’s department. It does appear to be highly irregular for this specific detective to be let go. More from the report:

CJ’s” sources say the social workers then forwarded their information to the Santa Barbara County Sheriffs Department. A detective investigated the matter and, in April 2003, closed the case against Jackson — squarely clearing him. “CJ” has learned the sheriff’s department no longer employs that detective. (see Sheriffs Cleared Jackson Before Charging Him – CJ + Video)

CJ’s pro-prosecution sources say the detective’s departure had nothing to do with the Jackson “case”, but you can bet the defense isn’t going to simply take their word for it. __What’s the timeline? Whatever works…__ One issue addressed by these new explosive details concern whether or not the family was “under duress” when they cleared Jackson of citizen-initiated suspicions of molestation during the Child Services interview. Another issue revolves around whether or not prosecutors changed their timeline, in the face of strong testimony from social workers, in front of the grand jury. This may also be mounting illustrations of misconduct by the prosecution. Again, according to that Celebrity Justice article “Sheriffs Cleared Jackson Before Charging Him”, the social workers who interviewed this family during the prosecution’s timeline say the family was not under any duress whatsoever. They even testified to that fact during the grand jury, according to a more detailed CJ report. From the article:

According to Levin’s sources, however, the social workers say there was absolutely no evidence of duress. They say they’ve “done this for a long time” and it was “clear” to them this family spoke freely, without hesitation and without threat. (see Sheriffs Cleared Jackson Before Charging Him – CJ + Video)

It is important to note this because not only did the family flatly deny any abuse, but they didn’t appear to be kidnapped either. CJ’s Jane Valez-Mitchell appeared on the new CNN Headline news show Showbiz Tonight on Feb 23 2005 to talk about the gigantic change in the prosecution’s timeline and the possible reason for that change. As we’ve been discussing here since the dates in the indictment became known, the prosecution changed the timeline, the dates of the alleged “abuse”, the number of counts, and tacked on a “conspiracy” charge during the grand jury process. The prosecution went in with one set of charges in Dec 2003, and emerged from the grand jury process with an entirely different set of charges. But why? Based on information from CJ, the public may now know that one of the reasons for these massive changes was firm, spot-on testimony from the social worker(s) who interviewed the accusing family back during the prosecution’s timeline. From the transcript of Valez-Mitchell on Showbiz Tonight:

VALEZ-MITCHELL: …”Celebrity Justice” has broken a huge story about a problem with the prosecution timeline. We’ve all heard by now this family was interviewed by social workers, and they told them, ‘Nothing happened, nothing happened’. And the prosecution says, ‘Well, they said that because they were under duress, they were being threatened, they were being coerced’. Well, the social workers, we’re told, don’t believe that. They say they didn’t show any signs of being under duress. And in fact, one social worker testified before the grand jury, and she was apparently so convincing that the prosecution changed the date of when these alleged molestations began until after that interview, February 20. So the defense is going to use that to say, ‘Wait a second, you’re changing your story after Michael Jackson was arrested.’ That’s a problem. (see Showbiz Tonight: Jane Valez-Mitchell talks about pros. changing the timeline)

“Problem” is an understatement. This is possible cause for some kind of investigation or at least a media discussion about why the alleged “molestation” allegations magically changed from beginning Feb 7 2003 to beginning Feb 20 2003, after the strong grand jury testimony from the DCFS worker. It seems as if the prosecution is trying to tailor the allegations around the facts of this “case”. That’s ridiculous. You can’t mold details of an alleged crime to fit around certain circumstances. Either a crime occurred at a specific place during a specific date and time, or it didn’t. If this weren’t so serious, I would think it was a Saturday Night Live comedy sketch where the players change the facts right in the middle of the “case” to try to win. Check out this mythical scenario: Prosecutors changing the story is tantamount to an accuser saying ‘oh I was abused on Feb 8 2003 at night in Jackson’s bedroom’. Jackson shows press video of him shopping at a mall during that time. Then, the accuser’s story changes to ‘oh did I say Feb 8 at night? I meant, Feb 20 in the morning for 7 minutes….but I was passed out, so my brother saw it’. Huh?! You don’t get to do things like that. You don’t get to change the allegation to fit around independent facts of the case. This is ridiculous. During the report that was broadcast on CJ Feb 23/24 2005, Levin says these social workers have said that there was “absolutely no duress” and they are firm in that stance. From a transcript of the broadcasted report:

HARVEY LEVIN: These social workers, we know, have said there was absolutely no evidence of duress. They said they’ve done this for a long time and it is clear to them this family spoke freely, without hesitation and without threat. (see Celebrity Justice: Harvey Levin comments – Feb 24 2005)

So according to a number of independent, 3rd party witnesses who actually talked to these people during the prosecution’s timeline, the accusing family were not being held hostage, threatened, nor did they appear to be hiding anything from those people trained to recognized situations like that. Appearing on MSNBC early Feb 24 2005, Harvey Levin provided a bit more detail about these three social workers. He says, again, that they were very convinced the family was telling the truth when they said Jackson never molested them, that he was never solely alone with Jackson, and that he never slept in Jackson’s bed, etc. From the MSNBC interview:

HARVEY LEVIN: These are the 3 social workers from the LA County Department of Child and Family Services who interviewed the accuser and his whole family on February 20 of 2003 before any of the charges were filed. And these 3 social workers walked away hearing that nothing had happened between Michael Jackson and the boy, believing that this family was telling the truth. (see MSNBC Live: Harvey Levin talks about 3 social workers – Feb 24 2005)

Levin has learned that these workers were interviewed as recently as last week and they still stand by their previous assessment. More from the MSNBC interview:

LEVIN: … We know they were interviewed just last week. And they are very strong, very clear that they say this family was under no duress, there was no evident threat and they still believe they [the family] were telling the truth then. …And these 3 social workers are squarely in the corner of the defense saying they believe the family when they said nothing happened. (see Celebrity Justice: Harvey Levin comments – Feb 24 2005)

Levin appears to be getting failed excuses from his pro-prosecution sources regarding these “threats” to the point where he can’t fully explain what his prosecution sources meant. But he again says that what he does know for sure is those 3 social workers don’t buy the prosecution’s hostage-come-lately theory. More from the interview:

LEVIN: … I don’t know what it is. I just know that there are 3 social workers who are gonna say ‘we don’t buy it. We’ve listened…’ and in fact one of them worked at this place called McClaren (sp?) Hall which is a place for abused children in Los Angeles. And this social worker said ‘I’ve talked to lost of people who lie. This family, we believe, was not lying at the time [of their February 20 2003 interview].’ It’s gonna become central to this case. (see Celebrity Justice: Harvey Levin comments – Feb 24 2005)

So what are just a few facts that have come out up to this point? Point 1: All family members were interviewed through 3 social workers on Feb 20 2003. Later that very same day, these workers received a call from a lieutenant in the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department ordering them either not to talk to the family, or not to do any further interviews with the boy or his family. The social workers forwarded their information to the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Dept (SBSD). Point 2: The SBSD began their own 2-month long investigation in which Jackson was eventually cleared and the case was close April 2003, long after the prosecution’s timeline was over, “with no further action required.” Point 3: At least one detective on that 2-month investigation was fired/let-go by the SBSD for reasons unknown. Sources cited in reports say it was because that detective did not see a justifiable reason to continue the investigation into Jackson based on a total lack of evidence. Point 4: The prosecution changed their timeline in the grand jury, according to CJ sources, evidently to fit around the strong testimony from at least one social worker who interviewed the family right in the middle of the prosecution-alleged “kidnapping”/“threatening”/“molestation”. Point 5: If you’ll remember, the family was also interviewed by Mark Geragos’s private investigator Brad Miller at the stepfather’s residence reportedly “around February 16 or 18” (see Jackson’s Smoking Gun: Jay Jackson Present once when accuser denied abuse). Point 6: The family was in talks with at least two British tabloid journalists trying to broker a deal for an interview, requesting at least 15,000. This, too, was done right in the middle of the prosecution’s “abduction”/“conspiracy” allegation. Aside from completely obliterating the kidnapping/abduction allegations, it simply provides yet another illustration of what we’ve already referred to as the Pacific Ocean-sized holes in the prosecution’s “case”. Point 7: According to reports, there are piles of receipts and other documentation showing that the family was living it up at least from Feb 25 2003 until early March 2003 at a plush hotel; getting manicures, pedicures, spending hundreds of dollars at various shops, going to the movies, ETC. Again, RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE of the prosecution’s asinine timeline Point 8: The 3 social workers are reportedly on the defense’s witness list and still stand by their original assessment of the allegations against Jackson are “unfounded” (DCFS memo) And the list could go on and on. With these new and suspicious developments in the so-called “case”, the prosecution may really be up past their eyeballs in misconduct and grave problems. Add to this Sneddon injecting himself into this “case” by secretly and privately meeting with the accuser’s mother where he showed her a photo line-up, got her to sign Victim’s Compensation Forms and took “evidence” from her – all without tape recording the encounter or bringing an independent 3rd party along to witness it. He’s already been made to testify at a pre-trial hearing and more than likely will be called by the defense to testify as to what was discussed during that secret meeting. That is, unless this can somehow get him out of it. If the defense “goes there”, the prosecution will try to bring in 1993, and along with that, in comes all of Jackson’s exonerating evidence that didn’t see the light of day back then. They could possibly call the 1993 accuser, who may or may not be standing by the allegations he made as a child under his father’s urging. So this will be interesting to watch. And since the prosecution is already going into this case with massive problems, the fall-out could be enormous with internal investigations and questions flying all over the place. Not to mention a lazy media, who more than likely will be scratching their heads at the exonerating evidence unloaded by the defense, and asking themselves ‘how did we miss ALL this?’ Stay tuned. -MJEOL

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