The Trials of Frank Carson podcast: cast of characters

Frank Carson

That notorious booking photo

Chris Goffard: “He gave the impression of a hayseed who had won a new tractor.” Frank Carson, booking photo STANISLAUS COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT

Korey Kauffman, the murder victim

Korey Kauffman

The prosecutor: Chief Deputy District Attorney of Stanislaus County, Marlisa Ferreira

Stanislaus County District Attorney, Birgit Fladager

Stanislaus County District Attorney Birgit Fladager

The judge added that given other problems with the sharing of evidence discovery in the case, the district attorney “should have been sitting here and hearing what the problems are in your office. I don’t get it. I have never seen a case of this magnitude – as you know, I have tried some cases of some magnitude – where the District Attorney’s Office has made so many mistakes with respect to discovery.”

Judge slams DA’s Office mistakes in Carson case as “totally unacceptable”

Investigator Kirk Bunch

As Criminal Investigator at Stanislaus County, Kirk Bunch made $191,144 in total compensation. Of this total $83,847 was received as a salary, $26,946 was received as overtime pay, $66,382 was received as benefits and $13,968 came from other types of compensation . This information is according to Stanislaus County payrolls for the 2018 fiscal year. Kirk Bunch total compensation is 6% higher than average criminal investigator salary, and 136% higher than average Stanislaus County salary.

CalSalaries
Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Facebook page: Kirk Bunch handed a plaque by DA Birgit Fladager: March 2020

Investigator Kirk Bunch and a detective named Evers promised they would “be my friend if I told the truth,” Saldana said. The officers, Saldana reported, prodded him to “just tell the truth, that the Athwals paid you to beat up people.”

PoliceAbuse .com

DA Investigator Steve Jacobson

Testimony begins in contempt hearing for Stanislaus prosecutor, investigator

Jolinda Reddy was one of three alternate jurors in Pontillo’s trial. She testified Friday that Jacobson approached her and the two other alternates. She said Jacobson asked them if they remembered anyone taking photos of them outside the courtroom.

She testified that, at the time, she still could have been called to replace one of the deliberating jurors. Reddy said she hadn’t thought about the alleged photo incident until Jacobson asked her about it.

Reddy didn’t think Jacobson’s question was odd until after a jury office staffer told Jacobson that he shouldn’t be questioning these jurors. Jacobson then left, she said.

Testimony Begins in Contempt Hearing for Stanislaus Prosecutor, Investigator
Frank and his mother – Frank and his supporters outside the courthouse after Frank Carson was released on bail

Frank Carson, his wife Georgia DeFilippo, and step-daughter Christina DeFilippo

Robert Woody — AKA “5.0” — the prosecutors’ star witness

Robert Woody, booking photo STANISLAUS COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
Woody’s interrogations begin in March 2014 and continue through July 2016

Woody told the investigators, “Every time I try to tell you the truth, I’m the fucking liar.”

“They bit the bait!” Woody said incredulously. “They jumped on it like fools!”

Yet when he tried to tell cops the truth, he says, they just called him a liar. They charged him with first-degree murder. They threatened him with life in prison; they threatened him with the death penalty. He had to lie, he says, concocting a story that would help the government’s case and minimize his own time behind bars.

“I wanted to get back to my family.”

LA Times: After 17 wrenching months: Verdicts, death and a witness’ shocking admission

The Pop ‘n’ Cork brothers, the Athwals

Diljit “Dee” Athwal, of the Pop ‘n’ Cork store

Daljit “Dee” Athwal with attorney JOAN BARNETT LEE FILE PHOTO

Baljit “Bobby” Athwal, from the Pop ‘n’ Cork store

Baljit “Bobby” Athwal

Former CHP officer Walter Wells

Walter Wells sits in a back room of the Pop N Cork liquor store. The former California Highway Patrol officer was charged with murder and conspiracy.
(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

A cellphone expert examined the phone records of a third CHP officer, Walter Wells, and claimed his cellphone had pinged off the same cell tower sector as Kauffman’s 21 times in the weeks after the thief’s disappearance.

The D.A. rejected the innocent explanation — that Wells lived and socialized in Turlock, which had few cell towers, and that countless other local cellphones would show similar results. Instead, the D.A. decided Wells had been carrying Kauffman’s phone to confuse investigators. Murder.

LA Times: Allegations of a wild murder conspiracy involving CHP officers, lawyer, wife, daughter
The DA dropped charges against Walter Wells in late December, 2019. He had been charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice and accessory to murder. He was originally charged with murder and held without bail for 16 months until the DA dropped the murder charge, but retained the obstruction charge and charging him with accessory.

Modesto attorney Frank Carson, who has been acquitted of murder, was in court Tuesday asking a judge to dismiss charges against his co-defendant, a former California Highway Patrol officer who is set to stand trial in the homicide case. Walter Wells faces charges of conspiracy to obstruct justice and acting as an accessory in connection. Wells is accused of conspiring with Carson and brothers Baljit Athwal and Dalit Atwal in connection with the death of Korey Kauffman.

Ex-CHP officer accused in murder case has a new lawyer: his former co-defendant

Former CHP officer Scott McFarlane

Pilot and former CHP Officer Scott McFarlane, at Turlock Municipal Airport. He and two other highway patrol officers, who hung out at Pop N Cork, were among the nine defendants in the Kauffman case. (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Two former California Highway Patrol officers and a Modesto defense attorney have filed lawsuits against Stanislaus County and other local agencies, claiming investigators and prosecutors faked some evidence, destroyed other evidence and coerced witnesses in a malicious murder prosecution.

…Walter Wells and Scott McFarlane, [claim] that the prosecution cost them their jobs and retirement benefits, destroying their reputations and leaving them in financial ruin.

Former CHP officers, defense lawyer sue, saying prosecution left them in financial ruin

Moody’s ruling meant the criminal case against McFarlane was over, and he was free to go. However, the case against McFarlane started all over again the following morning, when the District Attorney’s Office filed a new complaint against him with the identical accessory charge.

Ex-CHP officer accused in Turlock murder case free to go. Then, DA filed new charge
Former CHP officer Scott McFarlane, booking photo – STANISLAUS COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT

Former CHP officer “Q” Eduardo Quintanar

Eduardo “Q” Quintanar, right, was charged with conspiracy to obstruct justice in the 2012 slaying of Korey Kauffman. JOHN WESTBERG JWESTBERG@MODBEE.COM

The arrest (probable cause) warrant

The full 334 page arrest warrant for Frank Carson, Georgia DeFilippo, Christina DeFilippo, Daljit “Dee” Athwal, Baljit “Bobby” Athwal, Eduardo “Q” Quintanar, Walter Wells, and Scott McFarlane

✦︎❖✦︎

$mythSERENE

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