Saturday, August 30, 2014

Sheriff's race - really?

Is there really an important election for McHenry County Sheriff coming up? Where is all the news from and about the two candidates, Jim Harrison and Bill Prim?

Is anybody talking about the race? Will there be debates (not just wimpy "forums")? What are the issues?

Election Day is Tuesday, November 4. That's two months from now.

One issue that I'd like to hear debated is the failed (in my opinion) investigation of the triple homicide that occurred in McHenry County, outside Marengo, on June 7, 2011. Three people died that night - Jack Feldkamp, Audrey Feldkamp and Doran Bloom.

The case was "solved" in less than 24 hours, according to now-retiring Sheriff Keith Nygren. He held a news conference (excluding electronic news hounds Cal Skinner, Pete Gonigam and yours truly) less than 24 hours later. Nygren had the gall to post a notice in the hallway at the courthouse that only "credentialed media" would be admitted to the press conference.

Nygren, prior to any meaningful, thorough investigation and without even the benefit of a written statement from Scott Feldkamp, son of the deceased Jack and Audrey Feldkamp, drew a conclusion and announced, in effect, "Case closed." After that, deputies wrote up reports and that was that. You can understand that no deputy would ask a career-ending question, like "What if Doran Bloom didn't do it?"

MIAT (a County-wide Major Investigations Assistance Team) was never activated. Undersheriff Zinke was the lead cop over MIAT. Only deputies of the McHenry County Sheriff's Department "investigated". Independent, trained eyes from other local police agencies were never called in. Reports do not indicate that any blood samples or clothing were ever sent to a laboratory for testing.

I've been told by more than one experienced crime-scene investigator that this case was mishandled worse than any case they had ever seen. The crime scene log shows that Nygren and Zinke were there for only 15 minutes that night, and there is lingering doubt in my mind that Nygren was even in town that night, because I was told the next day that Nygren had returned to McHenry County on the morning of June 8 to hold the press conference. 

The squatter is out of the Feldkamp family home now. He had nothing to do with the homicide, but a reasonable question would be why he was allowed to live in the house for a long time, possibly rent-free. The house was an asset of the estate.

The Estates of Jack and Audry Feldkamp are now scheduled for closing on November 13th. No doubt that Woodstock Attorney Carl Gilmore will be delighted if Judge Chmiel approves closing of the estates.

So the question is, will Prim or Harrison re-open this case and investigate it the way it should have been investigated in June 2011?


Jim Jones said...

No,Prim won't. Harrison is so far out if the flow and picture that Prim is almost a shoo in, like so many bloggers hoped for
In the past general election. He is the county "golden child" or. "Anyone but Nygren or Zinke" that so many bloggers asked for, no one will make any effort to vote or debate. Hope you're all happy with what you wished for. He's tightly bound to the SA office,and they haven't found any reason to re-open the case,granted "yet ".

Gus said...

Jim - first, thanks for your comment. Next - you are stating only your own opinion.
Are you a little mixed up about the types of elections? The primary earlier this year was NOT a "past general election". It was a primary. The General Election is two months from now.
You think Prim is the County "golden boy". What are you smoking, Jim?
Keep in mind that the SA is the Sheriff's attorney. I don't know what authority they have, if any, to open a case against their own client.
The State Police were asked to investigate, and they ducked. And not for a very good reason. The State Police looked at records in the Feldkamp/Bloom homicides and should have jumped all over the Sheriff's Department.

Jim Jones said...

Primary, not general, but it may as well have been, what with Harrison being do far outside the loop. But you and I BOTH are stating our opinions. Your opinion was that the State police dropped the ball, and that the SA won't investigate it's own client; they sure could have pushed for a special prosecutor. You nor I have any first hand knowledge of what and how Mr. Prim will act or do. My point is that whatever he does or does not do, someone is gonna be pis--d off. Many if you pushed for Prim, your right and choice. Now we ALL have to live with YOUR opinion, and others in Gus earlier camp. Good luck with that.

Gus said...

My opinion is that it was critical for the well-being of McHenry County for Bill Prim to beat Andy Zinke.

And I think it's critical for voters to have a choice in the General Election; thus, I was supportive of Jim Harrison's effort to collect enough signatures to make it onto the ballot.

Now it's up to the voters of McHenry County. Since I am no longer one of them, I have an interest, but not a stake, in the outcome.

Jim Jones said...

And my opinion was that the voters got it wrong in the primary, and that hysteria on some people's part changed what should have been a fine sheriff in Zinke. I also think it up to the voters now too. I just shudder at their two unknowns as choices