Sunday, March 3, 2013

Friday, March 1, 2013

The Final Shot: Travis Alexander

Last  photo  of Travis Alexander  taken
by Jodi Arias  before she killed him.  
This is the last photo ever taken of Travis Alexander.

His accused murderer, Jodi Arias, 32, took the photo of Alexander, in his Mesa Arizona apartment shower --  right before things turned deadly in June of 2008.

After this picture was taken, Travis was stabbed 27 times, shot twice in the face and his throat was slashed in what the prosecutions claims was a jealous rage. 

Arias' story continues to change. 
In the latest version, she told the jury she killed Alexander in self-defense after  increasing sexual demands, inappropriate behavior and an attack on her. 
Take a look at a Travis' eyes. 
They're haunting. 
I wonder if the conflict started at this point. 
Or was he, as she said, merely posing for a Calvin Klein-like Ad?
To me, he looks scared.
Very scared.
I wonder if she showed him the gun at this point.

Allegedly Jodi attempted to delete the images from the camera. 
Forensics brought them back.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

"Jodi Arias Prosecutor's Like a 'Rabid Dog,' Legal Critic Says"

So I am running very late for the day because I am glued to live testimony on the Jodi Arias trial.
Jodi over- killed her boyfriend Travis Alexander in the shower.
Jodi and Travis Alexander.
Note position of her hand.
I find this murder case, telecast live, fascinating.
Word has it, this is the longest a DEF (Defendant)  has ever been on the stand.
And I can see why.
Jodi is a very good liar.
However, she doesn't know we all know she is lying.
And she is totally unprepared for the relentless prosecutor who must've been a pitbull in a previous life.
Watching prosecutor Juan Martinez cross-examine her is pure poetry in motion for someone like me, who is hired by victims or their families.

I haven't see Jodi cry until today.
That always gets to me... when the killer cries.
Who are they crying for really?
Not the victim...
for themselves.
They cry because they got caught.
They cry because they are going to jail.

Yet Jodi cries what I believe are real tears  as she is directed to look at the crime scene photo.
She knows she is busted then and just breaks down.
Her hand is shaking.
The emotion is real.
Martinez sinks his teeth in and says:

"Ma'am where you crying when you were shooting him?
Were you crying when you were stabbing him?
From Jodi Arias' "My Space"
Were crying when you when you cut his throat?
And you're the one that did this right?
And you're the same individual that lies about all this right?"

That was one laser-guided, heat-seeking scud missile direct to the heart of her lies.
Powerful stuff, Juan Martinez.
Take this girl off the streets.
We don't need another Casey Anthony out there.

If you don't know about this case here's a great link to catch you up.
It's live on InSession, Court TV... and all over the web.

Jodi Arias Prosecutor's Like a 'Rabid Dog,' Legal Critic Says - ABC News

Monday, February 25, 2013

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Locating Inmate Info

Soon, I'll be launching a website and this blog will be moving to a new platform through that site.
If you're with me on Facebook, you'll see I am indeed embracing this whole social media thing...
though like many people, I came to FB and social media, reluctantly.
And I'm still figuring it out.
There's one picture of me on my Facebook wall that's it.
And my back's to the camera.
How does a PI keep a low visual profile in cyber space?
It isn't easy...
yet somehow, it's working.

So as I was  packing up my gear, today, to head out in the field...
I checked the stats on blog readership.
There were many surprises there.
Significant readership worldwide, translated into many languages.
It's wild to know people in Australia, Japan and Siberia  are reading the words I type now.
And it's fascinating to see what blog posts people like... and don't.

Some blog posts are big reader favorites.
One of the biggest, from two years ago, was the Jail Exchange and Inmate Locator, which I'll link you to at the end of this post.

There are  many ways to get  free public info now on warrants, criminal records, mugshots. is a great site to get quick hits on known criminals.

Jerry Sandusky's Mug Shot
Mugshots is a very broad site  and not highly accurate because each state has specific laws on whether they will release info.

So finding your subjects is challenging because the waters are muddied by an overflow of information filled with common names, multiple identities and catfish feeding everywhere.

Criminal records are equally challenging, because there is no single federal criminal depository of records the public can access.
The Feds have access to a national criminal database... even then it's highly restricted.
A police officer or federal agent couldn't use it for a personal or private search, these are protected national records.
P.I.'s subscribe to databases that allow us to pay for criminal records per search.
The accuracy of this info is still questionable, though more credible and can be verified with a deeper look, or hand-pull if necessary.

Free  criminal records are accessible...
however, every county, in every state has its own records.
And I personally question the validity of all records I find on line until i can verify them.
Records are only as good as the people entering them and filled with error.

So a criminal record search has to be done with caution and care...
plus knowledge of every place the subject has lived, passed through, may have been arrested.
Then every record in every state in every county has to be searched

So one of my first stops on a free  criminal search is "The Jail Exchange and Inmate Locator."
Sometimes I hit, sometimes I strike out.
Either way, it's a great place to start, to step up to the plate when running backgrounds, locates.
Here's a link to my post about this site from 2011...

Friday, February 22, 2013

Re: Drew Peterson Case

If you've been following the Drew Peterson case as I have, you may feel the same sense of satisfaction I did on the day he was arrested. And the day he was, at long last, declared guilty.
I couldn't stand the guy.
It was bad enough Peterson was a police officer who got away with killing his first wife.
It got much worse with the missing second wife (still not found); with their kids in his custody; and a third potential wife he was planning to marry. Both wives had life insurance policies.

He flirted with the media, the moth to their bright lights. Yet he was transparent and offensive, it appeared everyone saw through him.
He basked in way more than 15 minutes of fame with an attitude and posture that mocked his victims and his fellow officers.

I worked a murder case many moons ago similar to this one.
Everyone knew our suspect did it --  everyone including the police, the victim's family, the prosecutor, and every investigator on the case, myself included.
Yet still we couldn't get him.
We couldn't get a grand jury to indict him.
We couldn't get anyone to testify against him.
We had evidence. It just wasn't good enough.
So we had to step away and watch him walk away...
and walk back into his life...
back into the arms of  the woman we believed would be his next victim.
A decade passed...
the investigation never really stopped...
though it never really started up again either.
Instead, the case grew cold until one day, the phone rang.
I picked it up and was told the suspect killed himself.
As simple as that.
It's over.
The cold case is now a closed case.

The suspect killed himself for reasons we don't know.
There was a suicide note, it wasn't released.
He left more damage in his wake...
a grieving family...
and the victim's family...
all with questions unanswered because those answers went with the suspect  to his grave.
I think he killed himself because he was haunted.
Either by the victim, his memories of it, or karma.

 Drew Peterson, is still alive and hopefully, not well.
He was just transferred  to prison.
This is a link to the most recent news on his case.Drew Peterson transferred to Pontiac prison

Adele - Skyfall

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Leaving The Nest

Once of the toughest challenges some parents face is the pont of letting go of their child or children...
who have officially become adults.
When the kids leave home, some adults have "empty nest syndrome"  because the couple's relationship,
or the single parent's world, was carefully constructed with the kids as nucleus.
Take out the nucleus and you've got an empty hole.
An empty nest.

In other cases, some adults celebrate and salute their kid's independence...
as I do....
because I think a parent's job is to give their kids wings and instructions to fly on their own.
As Kahlil Gibran said, "Children do not come to us, they come through us."
If they fall, as we did throughout life...
we can only hope they learn, as we did, from their mistakes.

It seems, however, at this time... in this human history,
more and more young people are focused not on the outside world...
rather the cyber world.
Texting has replaced talking.
Skyping is seeing.
And Facebook is believing what is, more often than not, untrue,

Video games have replaced board games.
And video game addiction -- just like a gambling addiction -- is causing more and more young people with enormous potential to blow it all...
to not educate themselves..
to not pursue a career at all...
to feed off  others, like the the young man in the story below, in order to pursue the game.
For video game addicts,  life IS the game. All else is a distraction.

And why not?
Addiction sells.
Gaming is a huge multi billion dollar industry. Like tobacco was once.
The greater the desire, the greater the demand, the greater the sales.
And for some people, the games trigger an adiction that cause some people to give up everything for them.
Most specifically, a  real life in real time.
For an addicted video game player,  the cyber game IS life and everything else is a distraction.

When  heard the story I wrote this blog post preface for...
I needed to confirm its truth.
Once I did that, I decided to post it here.
Because if it blows me away, it's likely to do the the same to someone else.

It's the story of one dad in China, who could not get his adult son to grow up and step away from the game.

While the story doesn't say whether dad's technique worked, I suspect... and have since confirmed...
it failed.
Cyber cattle prods aren't real.

Bottom line....
the story reflects the frustration of so many parents...
and so many young people in today's terrible economic and political environment.
The world is broke, contentious and has turned on its axis.

For the older ones expecting to retire securely...
and the younger ones planning to graduate from school and land a job...
it's not going to happen without a whole lot more effort than we ever anticipated.

And for those currently drowning in the sea of unemployment, reaching for any buoy they can...
that buoy is not in cyberspace.
It's not on Facebook. Not Twitter. Not Texting. Not World of War Craft. Not Video Games.
These are what we call  HOBBIES.
It is WORK that pays the bills.

I think that's what the dad in the article you are about to read... was trying to say.
He just didn't say it well.
And in the end...
the ultimate irony.
His son got trained by paid highly trained assassins to become a better cyber fighter.
So who really was the winner here?

Here are a couple of links to the story. The one is the most detailed.
This one has some real interesting comments at the end.
Curious what you think...

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Stalker Song

RE: The Stalker Song

The above You Tube, the "Stalker Song" a light hearted opening to a very serious topic. I debated posting the song because for some people, stalking is anything but amusing. However, it makes the point without getting too grim.

I think some people today throw the word "stalking" around as if it's a good thing... which it is not.
It's not "you" the person the stalker wants, it's "you" the "object" they wish to possess.
And I think many people have no clue how much personal info they put out about themselves on Facebook.

If you're being stalked, you have no business being on Facebook.
That of course, is just my opinion.
However, it doesn't take much to hack into someone's Facebook account, so if you think your settings are private, they are not.

Stalking is a terrifying and deadly thing.
Sometimes stalkers can be easily stopped.
Their misdirected emotions can, on occasion, be re-directed through other channels. Sometimes a discussion with the stalker and/or his family about the legal of implications of stalking does the trick.

Other times a letter from an attorney can keep the wolf at bay.

In many cases, the police and a temporary or permanent restrainer are all it takes.

Yet in some cases..... nothing works.
The situation changes from annoying (see video below)... to deadly.

Rebecca Shaffer's case sparked anti-stalking laws in California.
For those old enough to remember and young enough to discover it on Hulu or Netflix, Rebecca was on "Mork and Mindy."

She didn't stand a chance the minute the guy showed up at her door.
And how did he get her address?
He hired a P.I. to give it to him!

Which is why, when you hire a good, licensed, ethical P.I., you won't find someone a potential client is looking for unless you can prove no harm will come to that someone.
And still you won't get an address or phone number out of the P.I. without an all clear.
A good P.I. will act as an intermediary before giving a client a subject's information.
It has to be okay with the subject or it doesn't happen.

Many stalkers are indeed wolves in sheep's clothing.
Some do look crazy on the outside and you can see them coming.
However, the majority, in my experience, appear normal at first.
Yet, look deeper and you can see...
most stalkers aren't all there.
The elevator does not go to the top.
They're a few beers shy of six pack.
Ans a stalker and a gun, knife, battery acid,  zip ties and a taser... is a weapon of individual or mass destruction.

Some stalkers feed on the negative attention they get...
so the more people focus on stopping the stalker, the more he or she feeds into it...
and the stalking escalates.

Certainly, many  stalkers focus on the rick and famous.
Not only was John Lennon of the Beatles killed by a man who stalked and shot him  down..
Lennon's dear friend and Beatle's band mate George Harrison had a knife plunged into his body by a stalker who broke into Harrison's home while he and his wife slept.
That stalker has since died, and some say it's George's version of karmic justice. Here's that link:

There are countless lists and information from police agencies and stalking experts on how to stop a stalker. The purpose of this post is not to stop stalking... rather, to make you aware... whether you care or not... whatever you post on the net about yourself, is fodder for someone else. And if you have a stalker, whether you know it or not, you are ripe for the picking when you lay all your goodies out of on the table.

You could post a picture of your kid a pedophile gloms onto. Add a little adobe photo shop, air brushing, a nude body and your kid's picture is for sale to pedophiles worldwide.
You could post about a vacation you are on, then a stalker or thief will know you are not home.
You can post pictures of your friends, family and you've given a stalker a road map to your life.
An identity to steal.
And one smart-ass remark you make on your Facebook page in anger, can backfire and cost you your job, friends, family.... or worse, your life.
Check out this link...

If you are being stalked and can't stop it... or  it's escalating,  you need back-up.
Contact the police, an attorney, a P.I, the FBI, anyone who will listen.
In the meantime, these ten tips may help.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

" Back To the Start" with The Scientist & Original Rap - Live

Back To The Start

One thing life does not offer is "do-overs".
When we blow an opportunity...
walk away from something good...
tell someone something cruel...
knowingly do something unethical, immoral or instantly regrettable...
we deal with the consequences.
There's no chance for an instant replay, a rewind, a"go back" to the start.

If you've made mistakes in your life, you're not alone.
I'm an expert in that department.
Not only do I have a lifetime of mistakes in my baggage in the shed...
as a PI, our business is all about mistakes and correcting them.
So I deal with human error on a daily basis.
I have learned this...
We learn from our mistakes depending on the way we deal with them.  
We have many choices and paths we  can take to deal with the mistakes we make in life.
Mistakes.... meaning errors or failure due to our own action... or in-action.

When you makes mistakes,  you can make amends.
Learn from from them.
Ignore them.
You can blame someone... or something else.... for your mistakes.
You can review those mistakes, replay them over in your head...
or run the "what-if'" scenario...
the rationalizations about what you did, didn't do, or could have done differently.
The best advice I can ever give anyone is...
don't repeat your mistakes.

And when you make one, don't beat yourself up.
Instead ask yourself one simple question...
"What is the lesson in this?"
When we learn from the lessons life's mistakes teach us...
we can acquire equity... in the form of knowledge...  from those mistakes.
How does a young child learn not to touch a hot stove?
By touching it!
Life is designed to teach us by trial and error,

I don't know about you...
I  prefer not to spend my life looking back in regret, or longing.
My feeling about life is really rather simple.
It is... what it is.
And every day above ground is a good day.

The point of living, in this P.I.'s opinion, is to KEEP living, with integrity, conviction, passion...
to work hard, live well...
to keep growing...
to keep learning...
to keep challenging yourself to change/become  the kind of person you truly want to be.
Once you figure out who that person is.

When you make a mistake, accept you are not perfect.
Or if you think you are perfect, accept you are not.

The following You-Tube speaks to this topic.
When I saw it on a friend's wall,  I decided to post it on the blog.
It is a great performance of a powerful message -- a visceral yearning in so many of us to just go back to the start.