July 2009

Forensics Don’t Lie

by Diane Dimond on July 27, 2009

Brains Reveals Secrets

Brains Reveal Secrets

Imagine the hushed, sterile atmosphere of an autopsy room. A body arrives and a team of forensic experts quietly gets to work to try to determine cause of death. Scientific evidence is gathered to determine whether a crime was committed to cause the death, whether it occurred from natural, unavoidable causes or if it was death by suicide.

In many cases, such as that of retired NFL quarterback Steve McNair, the cause of death is pretty obvious. McNair, was found sprawled on his condo’s couch, shot twice in the head and twice in the chest. Nearby was the dead body of his 20 year old mistress, a gun underneath her. It was quickly ruled a murder/suicide.

But other deaths are not so clear cut. Take the case of 50 year old infomercial scream-seller Billy Mays … [click to continue…]

{ 25 comments }

Hate is the Name of the Game In Crime

by Diane Dimond on July 20, 2009

Is the Label Helpful?

Is the Label Helpful?

Let’s talk about hate.

Hate crimes to be specific. By definition these are crimes perpetrated by someone who targets another based on their race, color, religion or national origin.

Congress now seeks to expand the definition of hate crimes to those who attack based on a victim’s sexual orientation or mental or physical disability. The goal is to add extra punishment for those convicted under hate crimes statutes.

Two of America’s most recent and widely publicized hate crimes took place within two weeks of each other.  On May 31st, there was the murder in a Kansas church of a high profile abortion provider, Dr. George Tiller. On June 10th, security guard Stephen T. Johns lost his life after courageously confronting a madman with a gun who entered the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. and started shooting. [click to continue…]

{ 22 comments }

"Uncle Arnie" Says He's the Real Daddy of Two

Christmas Time With "Uncle Arnie", Who Now Says He's the Real Daddy of Two

As I’ve already reported in this space the mystery sperm donor for Michael Jackson’s two oldest children, 12 year old Prince Michael and 11 year old Paris Katherine, is Jackson’s dermatologist for the last 25 years.

Now, the London Daily Mirror reports the beleaguered Dr. Arnold Klein, already in the cross hairs of a joint DEA/LAPD investigation into whether he illegally wrote prescription drug orders for Jackson, plans to jump into the official custody battle for the kids. According to this report Klein has told friends he wants to take a DNA test and prove once and for all he is the Baby Daddy.

No word on whether Dr. Klein would also want to take custody of 7 year old Blanket whose parentage is still a mystery. In nearly every instance judges like to keep siblings together. My question is why Klein’s sudden interest in playing Daddy? Does he think law enforcement might ease up on him if he’s suddenly responsible for children?

QUOTES FROM THE LONDON DAILY MIRROR :

“Now the 64-year-old millionaire has told friends that he IS the biological father, he wants to bring them up and he is consulting lawyers about his options.  A custody application filed with Los Angeles Superior Court in which Klein formally acknowledges he is Prince Michael and Paris’s father would be one of the most sensational developments yet in the entire Michael Jackson saga.

Klein’s intervention threatens to throw into total chaos the custody deal that was pending between the children’s biological mother, Debbie Rowe, and Jackson’s mother Katherine. A well-placed source, who is close friends with one of Klein’s inner circle, told the Sunday Mirror yesterday: “Arnie is planning to fight for custody of Prince Michael and Paris. “He says he can prove he is their father with Debbie.via Michael Jackson’s doctor to stake custody claim on his kids saying: ‘I’m the daddy’ – mirror.co.uk.”

Now that Dr. Klein apparently plans to fight for custody.  Boy, this could really get ugly.  And the kids are the real victims.

{ 17 comments }

The Maliciously Missing

by Diane Dimond on July 13, 2009

Jon and Maureen in Happier Days

Jon and Maureen in Happier Days

How many times have you heard about a missing person case?

To be sure there are hundreds of thousands of Americans reported missing every year. Some come right back home. But too often families of the missing either get the horrible news that their loved one’s body has been found or they continue to suffer with the quiet torment of no news at all.

Then there is the group of missing people who aren’t really missing at all. They are hiding. They’re called the “maliciously missing” by a woman who knows the subject all too well. Her name is Maureen Reintjes and on May 19, 2005 she kissed goodbye her husband of 24 years at their new home in Las Vegas, Nevada and he disappeared. No warning, no reason, he was just gone.  [click to continue…]

{ 40 comments }

A Word About Sources …

by Diane Dimond on July 8, 2009

The End Result of Confidential Sources

The End Result of Confidential Sources

Every investigative journalist must rely on confidential sources. Their inside information is the only way truth leaks out from government, institutions, corporations or celebrity entourages. And every good investigative journalist will tell you that what a single source says is never enough. You take the information from the source but then you must confirm it in other ways before making it public. Confirmation can come from other inside sources, from public documents, from sworn testimony – from all sorts of corroborating subjects. My most visible investigative efforts have come from my work looking into entertainer Michael Jackson. My work began in 1993, with the first allegations of child molestation against Jackson, were renewed in 2003 when a second young boy’s claims caused the story to erupt again and culminated when I covered the Jackson’s criminal trial in 2005. I wrote a book about my findings. All this work flowed from those brave enough (yes, brave enough) to come forward to reveal what they thought was important information. Some said they were sick at heart that children were being molested, some told me they feared for Jackson’s physical safety because of his addictions to drugs and alcohol, some were members of law enforcement and child protective services upset that the system was bending to celebrity worship. Since Michael Jackson’s death I’ve been flooded with e-mails, both admiring and attacking, about this body of work. I’ve been astounded that some angry Jackson fans continue to demand I give up my sources. They feel that what I’ve been reporting over all these years cannot possibly be true because I haven’t revealed the genesis of the information. In the forward to my book, “Be Careful Who You Love: Inside the Michael Jackson Case,” I take special pains to thank all those countless sources of information I’ve had on the Jackson story. I wrote, “To all my sources over the years; you helped me understand the nuances. I couldn’t have asked for better navigators over difficult waters. A reporter’s work is only as good as her sources. Most of you were seeking truth as was I.” So to all those Jackson fans who continue to write in, adamant that I reveal where I’ve gotten my information: It’s not going to happen.  HOME

{ 41 comments }

The Enigma That Was Michael Jackson

by Diane Dimond on July 6, 2009

Let's Admit - There Was A Dark Side

Let's Admit - There Was A Dark Side

When I was plying my trade as an investigative reporter the most famous criminal defendant I ever covered was entertainer Michael Jackson. Boy, did I cover him! From breaking the first news about the molestation claims against him back in 1993 to being the first to report the 2003 abuse allegations of a young boy who was a cancer patient when he first met the King of Pop. I was there for every day of the criminal trial and I wrote a book drawing on what I’d learned about the man over the course of the decade I’d investigated his story. Now, Michael Jackson is dead at age 50. Since his death, likely related to his long term drug abuse and anorexia, I’ve been asked to explain the fascination so many have for this Pop Icon. What was it about Jackson that caused the great worldwide crowds of people we saw to drop everything and gather in public forums to mourn his passing? … [click to continue…]

{ 59 comments }