This case has been close to my heart as a mother and a criminologist because I know the psychological damage that occurs when a child is sexually assaulted. Now factor in the fact the kids’ mother put them in a situation to be exploited by law enforcement. What does that tell the kid? Family can’t be trusted to protect them and neither can the justice system. How dare Anne Patterson let Mark Smith get away with this. The man used his little girl to lure teenage girls in his home. He drugged and videotaped them as he raped them. Yet his charges have now been reduced from 3 counts to 1 and it isn’t even sexual battery; it is simple felony battery on a minor. In theory, since he plead not guilty and the video evidence is conveniently no longer available, Mark Smith could walk AND GET HIS BADGE BACK! WTF!!!!!!!
I suppose I shouldn’t be shocked. When I did the Erin Ambrose story, I found pictured of her with her friend the Honorable Judge Frydrychowicz. Of course, the pictures not to be found now but they are both runners in local events. Look for them together as well as the dirty deputies that Ms. Ambrose–excuse me–Mrs. VonAnsbach Young colludes with.
Everyone that reads this and that lives in Escambia County, I sincerely beg you to help the families of the young victims of the ECSO and now the State Attorney’s Office. Every child in Escambia County is now at risk of being exploited, molested, raped and ignored since this son of bitch is going to walk. That’s not justice. If you ever wanted to help change your community, this is the opportunity for the citizens to take back the community from the good ole’ boys. VOTE MORGAN OUT 2016. Call the State Attorney’s office…flood their office with calls asking them why they would do such a thing. Call the Sheriff, ask him why he helped a sexual predator go free. DO SOMETHING, I BEG YOU!
As expected, the Florida Supreme Court upheld Patrick’s conviction for the Billings Murders. The articles claim, “In upholding the conviction, the state Supreme Court found that the convictions were supported by competent, substantial evidence, according to the State Attorney’s Office.” That is a purely laughable statement.
In the public records, in plain English, the state acted against judicial canons of publicly making statements pertaining to pending litigation. They told the public that these men were guilty and used every available news outlet to do so. This is ethically and legally prohibited. But forgetting all the improprieties in procedure by the state, the DEA, FBI and Homeland Security have no interest in Patrick because he wasn’t the “mastermind” of anything relevant to this case. The fact that these agencies are involved supports the claim of this being a much bigger investigation than what happened in Pensacola in July 2009
Blue Markham gave the van used in the crime to Cab Tice a couple of months prior to the crime. The rest of the evidence clearly leads to Hugh Wiggins’s door. DNA evidence puts Hugh Wiggins in the Billings’ house with Byrd’s blood on his gloves. He also had the safe taken from the house as well as the murder weapon. Found with an arsenal of weapons in intracoastal waterways, his “limited” immunity frees him from ALL charges in Florida and Mississippi Then you have the surveillance tape which shows a completely different series of events than the prosecution ever presented. How is that possible? The tape is the key to this and the state completely disregards the actual events because they don’t fit their version of the crime….really????
This is all beyond logical comprehension. How can a man be sent to Death Row by what amounts to a trial in the media? Think about it. This could be any one of us. Would you trust these officials to find justice if you were in Patrick’s shoes?
On Saturday, February 22, 2014, Joaquim “El Chapo” Guzman was captured in Mexico City without incident. This was a coordinated effort by the US and Mexico. Extradition to the US is expected but mapped out yet. This is part of the surreality of the Billings murders. Far fetched as it may seem, it is inclusive. The Zetas, the cartel that took over the Gulf Cartel that was established in the Panhandle of Florida to the Panhandle of Texas, has been slowly consumed by the Sinoloa cartel. Sinoloa has been outsourcing with the Zetas for the last couple of years as well as taking out leaders. Now El Chapo is said to reign supreme over any drug trafficking from Colombia to North America and Spain. With him behind bars, the threat of territorial takeovers and uprisings is likely. Chapo has many enemies and this is the time for them to take his operation.
According to the FBI and DEA, the Billings murder are a product of this turf war. Knowing the expansiveness of El Chapo’s reach,”little ole Pensacola” may have more problems than they expect.
Researching this case, I have become aware of a few different observations. a. People will believe in an Elvis or extra-terrestrial sighting before they question press statements of the local government. b. Even with proof of the civil rights and privacy violations of the NSA, people don’t believe their corrupt city council member would ever lie to them. c. If the government can’t simply explain something, they use ambiguous terms to confuse the masses. ex: The Fast & Furious debacle is officially called a “gunwalking” operation. Gunwalking? It almost makes it sound like the guns themselves are in control of walking to the bad guys, doesn’t it. Another good set of terms are “disinformation” & “misinformation”
This is good. I had to dig into this to understand. Misinformation is used to describe the intelligence info that is inadvertently incorrect. Disinformation is used to describe intelligence info that has been intentionally laid out to deceive.
It appears the cases of intelligence with respect to covert government actions like the Fast & Furious are wrought with misinformation as well as disinformation on the organizations that are supposed to be at the heart of the intelligence (or lack there of) coup that was supposed to track the guns.
Enter Hugh Wiggins, a known gun runner, caught with a small arsenal of weapons and known connection to Los Zetas as well as the Gulf Cartel. In order to try to save their asses in this misinformation & disinformation faux pas, the feds cut him a deal for the correct info he is able to give them about his associates. The catch is the man is a murderer.
This is the dilemma of the law enforcement agents in this case, FBI, DEA, and local officials. The FBI & DEA have what they want out of this set of circumstances. Now what do prosecutors and sheriff supposed to do? They have made too many statements to national news outlets. They have released all the evidence in press releases. Search warrants, transcripts of the statements given to police by a number of people. The biggest issue is that just about every statement wording to the effect of “Patrick was the shooter” or “Patrick planned and killed those people”. Now these documents were accessed by a number of people within the county. There is no question that Patrick is the shooter based on these forms. Here’s the problem. These are ALLEGATIONS. It was presented to the public as fact. The prospective jurors are being told that Patrick is the murder without a doubt.
This nullifies the jury pool. They are presented with non-facts as facts. Then you have Sheriff Morgan shaking jurors’ hands saying “I did my part. I trust you will do yours in putting these people away.” This is another thing that sounds like the Sheriff is directing the jurors as to what they “should” do. This is all tainting the opinions of the jurors. This is highly improper.
Is there any wonder why Patrick was convicted in just 3 days??
It boggles the mind that this case could be so engrossing and yet depicted as so simple. Pensacola is corrupt. It is rotten to the core. This murder is less than 3 degrees of separation from any one there. But I have to say I was surprised at some of the people in the mix. Doctors, lawyers. The connection of the Billings to Sheriff David Morgan is a “humdinger”. He is associated to Arety who is a “colleague” of Billings. We can trace that influence to the spat with County Administrator, George Touart, then you get links to W.D. Childers & Willie Junior. Everyone remembers Willie Junior, right? Committing suicide under a house? THIS IS ALL SO BIZARRE!
I half expect Capone descendants to come out of the woodwork! The murders of the Billings’ is just needle in the pine. It is small event in a larger picture. The two major cartels were battling over territory that inevitably resulted in only one standing. Then we have the guns. The guns are the guns linked to an Homeland Security investigation…..which investigation might that be???? Oh, the one where we allowed “gunwalking” We let suspicious people buy guns with paper bags of cash. So we could “track” those guns. But those guns showed up in the murder of DEA agents.
Let’s look at the timelime:
- July, 2009-Billings’ murder. Hugh Wiggins is caught with an arsenal of guns. He receives an immunity deal that covers multiple federal, state and local crimes.
- August, 2009-the official “gunwalking” begins under Project Gunrunner; guns were tagged & recorded to follow up on where they “turn up”.
- September, 2009- June, 2010- Three major DEA operations make huge arrests involving guns and narcotics coming from Mexico.
- Early 2010- Los Zetas officially severs ties with the Gulf Cartel. By most accounts, the Gulf Cartel ceases to remain an organization.
Is it possible that Hugh Wiggins’ dropped a dime on someone in July that resulted in the events mentioned above? Absolutely.
Where does that leave Escambia County? We have 2 murder victims. It has made national news. Sheriff Morgan states repeatedly in the press that Patrick Gonzalez Jr. is the mastermind and the murderer. He says it to newspapers, national news syndicates, local news. Everywhere you look you see David Morgan’s face less than 10 days after the murder claiming this has all been wrapped up in a nice little “home invasion robbery”. What happens when an FBI evidence report puts Hugh Wiggins’ DNA with Byrd Billings blood on a pair of gloves? The report is tossed aside.
So someone choreographed 5 men to storm a compound that is fully established with cameras, to take some money from an old man. This is the story if you drank the Kool-Aid. This is the ultimate puzzle wrapped inside an enigma. The risk in this crime is high. The gain is low. No money actually came from it. Why so many men? Why at that location? Why? Why? WHY?
Then I see an article somewhere that says there is drug involvement. Makes sense, but still… So I look into this drug matter. I find that the DEA has an on-going investigation in the Pensacola area and in particular 2 cases involving Byrd Billings. NSA also has some oversight. A 73 year old man? Dope? NSA? DEA? Then there’s Patrick’s story of it being BIGGER than a robbery. That makes more sense to me than a “simple robbery”. The DEA documents suggest that Byrd Billings was being investigated for trafficking heroine, laundering money and human trafficking from a Mexican cartel, Los Zetas who were brokering an alliance to some degree with the Gulf Cartel which is loosely connected to the Columbo crime family. What? This guy has 13 foster kids. Trafficking humans? Heroine? Jesus Christ!
Then I watched Justin Billings interview. It was a couple of hours. He never cries. He is matter of fact in his statements. He doesn’t express any kind of emotion. No anger, no grief. He claims that his friend Walter spared his girlfriend for a price. What? Spared his girlfriend? What the hell does that mean? Is this guy high? No one seriously does this right? He’s spinning a yarn but implies he knew this would happen and he protected his girlfriend. Why would a simple robbery have any thing to do with a teenage girl? And if he knew what was to happen, why not go to police? or to his parents to warn them? Who the hell is Walter? Why is he not investigated? He seems to have some knowledge of this hit. Walter is never talked to or about beyond this interview.
It is ironic that when deputies arrived at the crime scene, Ashley Markham, Melanie’s daughter & her husband James “Blue” Markham were there. Justin was there by then. They told police about the video but it was Justin they asked to get the video because he was the only one there who knew how it worked. They didn’t wait for someone from in law enforcement to touch the video. They allowed the family to get the video. In a perfect world, the family would have no reason to do anything to skew evidence in a murder investigation, but this world isn’t perfect. Could there have been tampering? And if this surveillance system is so sophisticated that Ashley, Blue or any other learned person couldn’t figure it out, who was supposed to disable the cameras the way like every single one of the suspects said would happen? Justin, perhaps? But he is never looked at. Why? I’m just not understanding the breakdown of protocol from law enforcement. The family had roughly 30 minutes before the crime scene investigators got there. There were people walking around. No order to the scene. Is it possible some things were “taken” to not be found by the police? Is it possible things could have been altered to appear one way with another being the truth? From the beginning, this investigation is bungled.
I have spent months trying to come up with the PERFECT blog post. Truth be told, there is nothing much new happening. That’s a damn shame considering a man is sitting in a cell smaller than most people’s bathrooms with his life hanging in a constant purgatory state of nothingness. But this is the first day of a new year and a new approach is in order. I resolve to blog every single day about this case. I want this case in everyone’s face–day in and day out. I have a new plan that I am working to persuade Pat to go along with. It’s a “humdinger” 🙂
The most dismal part of this story is that with all the news about the federal government “spying” on the people, makes the truth of this crime more palatable and credible. We all know the extent of the corruption of our civil liberties; why would it be such a stretch to think it would sacrifice a low level criminal? Patrick Gonzalez was the sacrificial lamb. As much of the of a stretch as that may be, it is the truth.
Not one single person who has spent any time in good ole P’cola is oblivious to the corruption in the car industry. Ciano, Mercer, Cassiano, & on the seedy side Billings. Cab Tice is in the mix somewhere and wanted to be the head honcho. He and Hugh Wiggins took out Billings. Wiggins sang like a canary to the feds & told nothing to Escambia County Sheriff’s Department, but then Bill Eddins got the “good ole boy” nudge to do what he had to do to appease the community from the feds. So with no evidence and only uncorroborated testimonies of 2 scared kids, Patrick Gonzalez sits on Death Row. Now here is the million dollar question…how could the community believe that line of bull? It took 3 trials before Stallworth was convicted and there was actual physical evidence that linked him to the murders. That didn’t exist in Patrick’s trial; yet a guilty verdict was reached by 12 people who were made to believed they were “doing the right thing” according to Sheriff Morgan. I posted just one of the videos of the “Great” sheriff tooting his own horn. It is funny that he definitively states he has no knowledge of DEA involvement in the Billings murder or on the periphery of the case, when there is documentation to the contrary.