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News: NEW SPECIAL SECTION CREATED FOR VIRGINIA AREA MISSING AND MURDERED AND POSSIBLE CONNECTIONS
 
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Author Topic: Katherine "Baby Kate" Phillips, 4 mo, missing 6/29/2011, Ludington, MI  (Read 18024 times)
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cw618
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« Reply #60 on: September 11, 2012, 02:02:06 PM »

Quote
Courtland told WOOD-TV 8 that the marriage is to enable her to visit Phillips as part of her ongoing effort to find out what happened to their baby, who disappeared June 29, 2011, at the age of 4 1/2 months -- not an indication that she is love with Phillips.

According to Courtland's testimony at Phillips' trial in April, he was the last one seen with the infant outside her Ludington home.

http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2012/09/report_baby_kates_mom_plans_to.html

WHAT THE
who is she kidding,he can refuse to see her or any other visitor at anytime
and if he should say something,whats that thing called,when the spouse cant testify
  
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #61 on: September 11, 2012, 02:04:52 PM »

Quote
Courtland told WOOD-TV 8 that the marriage is to enable her to visit Phillips as part of her ongoing effort to find out what happened to their baby, who disappeared June 29, 2011, at the age of 4 1/2 months -- not an indication that she is love with Phillips.

According to Courtland's testimony at Phillips' trial in April, he was the last one seen with the infant outside her Ludington home.

http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2012/09/report_baby_kates_mom_plans_to.html

WHAT THE
who is she kidding,he can refuse to see her or any other visitor at anytime
and if he should say something,whats that thing called,when the spouse cant testify
  

I was wondering the same thing about a spouse not being able to testify against each other.  Makes me really wonder what is going on.
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cw618
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« Reply #62 on: September 11, 2012, 02:15:43 PM »

Quote
I was wondering the same thing about a spouse not being able to testify against each other.  Makes me really wonder what is going on.

cummings comes to mind   
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #63 on: September 11, 2012, 02:16:57 PM »

Quote
I was wondering the same thing about a spouse not being able to testify against each other.  Makes me really wonder what is going on.

cummings comes to mind   

 
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melisb
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« Reply #64 on: September 11, 2012, 02:45:25 PM »

you guy's know I'm usually off or wrong in my memory or suggestions, lol but here goes, weren't we told by someone here a little while back that when murder or crimes against a child are on the table spousal privilege is out the window?
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melisb
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« Reply #65 on: September 11, 2012, 02:46:53 PM »

Last sentence should be "I hope she will be required by the court to testify against him"!  Didn't she believe he was guilty at one time?
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #66 on: September 11, 2012, 03:02:32 PM »

Baby Kate's mom to marry convicted dad
September 11, 2012

IONIA, MICH. (AP) -- The mother of missing baby Kate Phillips has filed the paperwork to marry the man who has been convicted of killing her 4 month old daughter.

Ariel Courtland applied for the marriage in Ionia County yesterday, according to the Ionia County Clerk's Office. She has 30 days to marry Sean Phillips before the application is null.

 ::snipping2::

http://www.upnorthlive.com/news/story.aspx?id=799590
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #67 on: September 11, 2012, 09:48:30 PM »

Baby Kate dad's attorney: Mom said prison marriage plans are mutual

Published: Tuesday, September 11, 2012, 6:38 PM

LUDINGTON, MI – The Muskegon attorney who represented Sean Phillips at his trial for unlawful imprisonment of his daughter “Baby Kate” says the baby’s mother, Ariel Courtland, told her in advance of the couple’s plans to marry and told her it was a mutual decision.

“I have not personally talked to Sean, (but) the information I got was, they had decided this together,” attorney Annette Smedley said Tuesday. “I can’t verify it on Sean’s behalf, but that’s what I was told.”

Smedley said Courtland told her of the plan recently when they saw each other at the Mason County Courthouse in Ludington. She said Courtland told her it was so she and their older, 4-year-old daughter, Haley, would be allowed to visit Phillips in prison, something Courtland said prison officials have not allowed because Courtland is considered a victim in the case.

 ::snipping2::

Michigan has a spousal immunity law, which allows spouses the right to opt out of testifying against each other. However, that law will not give either one immunity from testifying against the other in a future criminal case involving Baby Kate.

Although married couples cannot be compelled to testify against each other in most criminal cases, there’s an important exception under Michigan law: The spousal privilege doesn’t apply “in a prosecution for a crime committed against a child of either or both or a crime committed against an individual who is younger than 18 years of age,” in the words of the law.

 ::snipping2::

http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2012/09/baby_kate_dads_attorney_mom_sa.html
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melisb
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« Reply #68 on: September 11, 2012, 11:34:48 PM »

Well, I'll be dogonnit!  I remembered something close to what it said!  Thank goodness, I guess pros can call her to the stand and pray she doesn't lie if she does find out anything!
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #69 on: September 12, 2012, 10:53:58 AM »

Sean Phillips letter says "Baby Kate" is dead
Wednesday, September 12, 2012 10:13 a.m. EDT

LUDINGTON (WKZO) -- Katherine Phillips has been presumed dead by police for months, and now comes a letter from her father that apparently explains how she died in July 2011.

Sean Phillips is serving at least ten years behind bars for unlawful imprisonment in the disappearance of "Baby Kate," and authorities are still building a homicide case.  The letter to the girl's mother, Ariel Courtland, has an admission that the child was thrown out of the car seat as he tore it out of his vehicle after a fight with Courtland.

 ::snipping2::

http://wkzo.com/news/articles/2012/sep/12/sean-phillips-letter-says-baby-kate-is-dead/
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #70 on: September 12, 2012, 10:57:30 AM »

Dad's letter: Baby Kate is dead
July 16 letter written by Sean Phillips from jail
Updated: Wednesday, 12 Sep 2012, 9:24 AM EDT

LUDINGTON, Mich. (WOOD) - A letter apparently written by the father of presumed dead Baby Kate tells how the little girl died.

 ::snipping2::

On Sept. 11, Target 8 obtained a letter from a source that was apparently written by Phillips. It explains how he believes Baby Kate died, what he did with her body -- and gives a possible explanation to why he and Baby Kate's mother Ariel Courtland are getting married.

In the letter, for the first time, is an admission from Phillips that Baby Kate is dead.

On jail-issued lined paper and in an envelope postmarked July 16 is a letter believed to be scrawled by the man at the middle of the search for Baby Kate.

The letter is unsigned, but does have Sean Phillips' name and prison ID number on the front of the envelope.

The print is small and fills the paper from edge to edge. It has no greeting to apparent intended recipient Ariel Courtland.

 ::snipping2::

http://www.woodtv.com/dpp/news/target_8/Dads-letter-Baby-Kate-is-dead

LETTER - http://woodtv.triton.net/news/sean-phillips-letter-watermark-091112.pdf
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MuffyBee
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« Reply #71 on: September 12, 2012, 10:58:04 AM »

I think the four year old needs to be taken into foster care for her safety.
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« Reply #72 on: September 12, 2012, 11:00:25 AM »

Sean Phillips' letter about Baby Kate
July 16 letter says Baby Kate is dead
Updated: Wednesday, 12 Sep 2012, 9:21 AM EDT

 ::snipping2::

Read the full transcribed letter here:

This is what you want, ok. I always felt that I needed to do this in person. That you deserved that, and that we would both need each other for that.

Also didn't feel safe writing these things anyways. Still dont, but this can't wait any longer.

I think I could even make it though talking about that day here now.

I cry trying to talk about much less. I just wanted to leave that day Ariel. I was surprised when you opened my door and that you could have even made it down there fast enough to catch me. That and almost everything I don't think I need to say or do you actually believe the shit you told them?

When I brought you back I didn't park, so that you would just get out and not pull any more shit to try to keep me there longer. Even when you sat there with the door open and foot out and I had to interrupt you three times with "I don't care" before you got out. You said something like "whatever f*** you" and "I'm gonna ruin your life" then walked around and spent a minute getting Kate out.

I was pretending to be busy why my phone or something so you would hopefully just leave me alone. Heard the door shut, saw you walk off. Your hands in front of you not on your sides. Like you were holding Kate. I drove away. A blonde lady by the office and I looked at each other as I passed.

There was some stuff I wanted to get done in town but I was tired and hung over and trying to decide whether to put it off till another time. Stopped at Wendy's to get something to eat and for time to make up my mind, but mostly to piss.

The phone kept ringing there. I went back to the car and ate. The whole time that f***ing phone wouldn't stop ringing. I could feel through my shorts to hit the volume button to silence a call, but the seat was too far up for me to get it out of my pocket to make it stop ringing because the car seat was in the way. It was driving me crazy and I was so mad at you. For that day for everything lately, for everything ever maybe ever.

When I tried to move the seat back to get the phone it was blocked by that car seat and I was pissed that you left it in there just to try to make me bring it back later. So pissed that I got out and was going to just throw it out into that area between Burger King.

I pulled but it was jammed between the seats. That just made it worse. I grabbed it at the top and ripped it out as hard as I could. She was thrown from it. I didn't know. I'm so sorry.

Held her for a long time. Seemed like forever. Maybe an hour, maybe a minute. Might not have been long. I can't explain a lot. Some things can only be lived. In a way I couldn't understand it. It didn't seem real. I didn't want it to be. It felt like falling, and like my head would explode. Couldn't think. Couldn't do anything. It eventually sunk in or something. I started crying. Couldn't stop. I've never cried that hard, seemed like my throat was closing. Mind was racing, yet I couldn't think. I guess I was in shock. I never even tried to help her. Never even thought to. Just sat there, holding her. I don't think anything could have been done.

Still I used to hate myself for not trying. Think I was there an hour and that after like a half hour and that it wasn't till right before I left that I realized calling 911. It was to late. I wouldn't be able to talk. I wouldn't know what to say anyways. I couldn't bring myself to pick up that phone. Scared of it and of the world. In a way I felt like it had killed her. You and it. I needed to believe I didn't hurt her that it was all your fault.

That sounds wrong, but I can't explain it right. A part of me knew I was losing Haley too. When I realized how long I must have been there seemed like even less of an option. I never decided to leave or anything. There was this urge or something I can't explain. Needed to get away from there or just do something, anything.

I drove, not to anywhere or for any reason. Just drove. A few things I suddenly realized I was driving, but couldn't remember how I came to be or where I was. Almost crashed twice. The second time I stopped and pulled off the road. I needed out of that car, and I just walked off. After a while I stopped.

For the first time I could think some. Thought about Kate. Her smile, the way she looks around. Everything, what should have been. Id held her all this time, couldn't bring myself to really look at her though I did now. I wanted to kill you. I cried. I cried until I somehow couldn't anymore. She was set in a peaceful place. I was walking and lost. Couldn't breath hardly.

Thought about sitting down and waiting to die of dehydration. Felt close. Then I was driving and for the first time I realized I had left her. I wanted to die. Couldn't bring myself to crash but didn't try not to . No seatbelt, paying no attention. Almost did once, instinct or whatever made me save it. Another time I almost hit another car. After that I drove normal, couldn't bear the thought of hurting anyone else while trying to hurt myself.

Then I was close to home and drying of thirst. Tried to detach myself. Already was in some way.

Went home to be alone and to get a drink. Stood in the middle of my room. Was still there for a while thought about taking my gun and leaving. Me, not you anymore. Wanted to go to you but I wasn't ready for that.

My mom bothered me about the phone again and I knew I had to return the call. I just needed to be alone. I wasn't ready to talk to anyone. Just said you should have her. Its true. Only wanted them to go away, when that didn't happen I thought I had just committed to that story. That to change it would throw away any chance I had. That they would never believe me because of it being that day. And never believe how she came to be left there. Also figured it a reasonable story.

I didn't think they could keep me for more than a couple days at the most. That didn't happen. When I met Annette I begged to talk to you alone. They said no. Paul made it clear he doesn't give a shit about me or Kate or you. They weren't willing to let me talk to them not that I would. I needed you. Not Tom Posma in a cold room on video. They even tried everything to keep me from talking to you about that day. I didn't accept that I wasn't getting out and getting to talk to you till about 2 weeks + in.

After the first couple days it had seemed harder to do the right thing. I expected to be let out after the prelim. It crushed me. Like you just implied that you really don't give a f*** about Kate, only who does and does not get in trouble. And right before that I got Kenny, April dads interviews. They all said you don't act like your child is missing or anything.

Then you were always trying to get recordings for court and saying stupid shit on phones. At that point I wanted you to go to prison.

Before then, I'm sorry I lied about Kate being ok. I wanted to tell you the truth so bad, to hold you, to be held. I said that because I thought you would do something then. Couldn't believe you wouldn't just get me the f*** out or make them allow us to talk.

For a long time blocked that day and Kate from my mind. Almost refused to acknowledge it to myself. Eventually I thought I would just never tell you what happened. It had already been so long w/o me being able to. That changed. The day I was found innocent I was going to go to you.

It was a long time before I started thinking about her and that day. The nightmares, panic attacks, nothing would get better. Think about it all was horrible, but it has helped. I use to hear my heart racing and almost collapse just from seeing a picture of her. I can smile now. I can remember her the way you do, and not another way as well.

I don't' think you could ever understand. Some things I don't completely. I never decided to pick her up. Never decided to call or not call 911, or to leave, or to set her down. It was like I was watching these things, not doing them, not sure what I'm seeing.

The only time I thought and anything was ? was when I was standing outside and then from when I almost hit that car. I wasn't dumping a body, wasn't like that at all. I want her buried too. I don't know where she was left. Some idea. Feel like I could get there. No, its not some f***ing swamp or lake. I know if they had left me alone I would have came to you that day.

I was thrown into the worst possible thing at the worst possible time. Everything just happened, and I never had the chance to do the right thing.

There's been other letters to you. Ones that never were sent. Oddly this one has done the worst of all in telling you, yet its the one Im making myself send. If I don't again then when? There will never be one I feel right with. These things mostly need to be talked about in person. Annette has the original, tear soaked one. Addressed to you, only it includes that lie about me thinking you could have possibly killed her.

Theres still a lot things I don't understand. 90% of the things you told them were lies. Some things I don't know if it was me or them you lied to them some other things. At the time it was something how you used her and acted a lot of the time like you could give a f*** less about her.

How you kept dragging out the adoption, which would just make it harder on her. Couldn't believe you wanted to do that test before finishing the adoption that day, just to make me pay. I never once thought you had any intention whatsoever of keeping her.

Still don't know why so many of the things you did said or whatever. Blamed for so long. Theres so many stupid little things that could have made such a difference. things as small as a phone call or using the bathroom.

Both of us fucked up some. Id give anything to go back. To that day, January, the summer I went to Georgia.

I want my parents to know. Things spouses tell each other is confidence cant be made to testify. But we aren't married yet in the eyes of the government. Then hearsay cant be used, so if you told then it would be hearsay as it didnt come from me. But Grand Jury can sometimes allow hearsay. Could you ask your attorney about that stuff? If you want to ask me things try to do it all at once. So we arent hearing incriminating stuff more than we need to.

Out of time for mail. Destroy theses. We'll talk.


http://www.woodtv.com/dpp/news/target_8/Sean-Phillips-letter-about-Baby-Kate
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Northern Rose
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« Reply #73 on: September 12, 2012, 11:01:28 AM »

I think the four year old needs to be taken into foster care for her safety.

I was thinking that last night as I was reading that she wants to bring her to visit this guy in jail.   
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MuffyBee
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« Reply #74 on: September 12, 2012, 11:55:22 AM »

I think the four year old needs to be taken into foster care for her safety.

I was thinking that last night as I was reading that she wants to bring her to visit this guy in jail.   

It's all about priorities imo.  The little four year old girl has her life ahead of her and I hope it's the best it can be.  As much as I wish I knew what happened to Baby Kate and perhaps her remains could be discovered with the possibility of some justice, I think taking care of the four year old takes presidency.  The mother is considering marrying Sean Phillips so she can visit him in prison under the pretense he may spill the beans about what happened with Baby Kate is ludicrous, imo.  If it were me, I wouldn't want to give this man one second of a pleasure of a visit, let alone be attached to him by marriage.  What kind of monster throws an infant seat with a child still in it in anger?  And to think she may bring the little girl to prison to visit?  Is she trying to get Sean to feel remorse?  Good luck with that.  I've been a visitor in a state penitentiary and it's really no place for children.  I can see there would be times to take a child for a visit under certain circumstances, but in this case, a resounding "NO!".  Mama needs to really, really think about her life and her daughter and where she's going in life.  Again, jmho
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« Reply #75 on: September 12, 2012, 08:36:43 PM »

Jailhouse Confession: Baby Kate Is Dead
6:59 p.m. EDT, September 12, 2012

LUDINGTON, Mich (FOX 17)—
Police and the Mason County Prosecutor's Office are investigating a letter from prison, allegedly written by Sean Phillips - the father of missing Baby Kate - where he admits to killing the infant.

 ::snipping2::

http://www.fox17online.com/news/fox17-baby-kate-murder-confession-letter-20120912,0,6672152.story
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cw618
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« Reply #76 on: September 13, 2012, 01:19:02 PM »

Quote
=======================
Read the full transcribed letter here:
 ::snipping2::
When I tried to move the seat back to get the phone it was blocked by that car seat and I was
pissed that you left it in there just to try to make me bring it back later. So pissed that I got
out and was going to just throw it out into that area between Burger King.

I pulled but it was jammed between the seats. That just made it worse. I grabbed it at the
top and ripped it out as hard as I could. She was thrown from it. I didn't know. I'm so sorry.
http://www.woodtv.com/dpp/news/target_8/Sean-Phillips-letter-about-Baby-Kate
=======================
She was last seen around 1:15 p.m. Wednesday. Katherine has no hair, blue eyes and weighs
about 12 pounds.
She was wearing pink shorts and a matching pink tank top with black and pink flowers
http://www.woodtv.com/dpp/news/local/nw_mich/Amber-Alert-for-Ludington-infant-4-mo
========================

JMO; SP is lying, baby kate last seen 1:15pm (lunch time) small town,if he was at wendys,
and wanted to throw the car seat , (SP words) into that area between Burger King. SP would
have to, have been parked in the area behind and next to the drive thrus at wendys,and BK
JMO someone would have seen or heard,and seen on the cams at the drive thru,of BK,and
then there is the proper placement of a car seat,you would have to unfasten the seat belt to
get the car seat out,oh and he still didnt see a baby in the car seat
JMO,what ever happened to baby kate didnt happen at wendys
IDK,seems SP and baby kates mother are,playing some kind of sick game,wonder why

 burger king and wendys area overhead
http://goo.gl/maps/NNw9t
area street zoomed
http://goo.gl/maps/xDLwn
home to wendys
http://goo.gl/maps/r09Yb
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« Reply #77 on: September 14, 2012, 09:00:30 PM »

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/1209/13/ijvm.01.html
JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL

Missing Baby`s Mom to Marry Prime Suspect?

Aired September 13, 2012 - 19:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: "JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL" starts right now.

JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight, a bizarre twist in the mystery of a missing baby girl. Her mom wants to marry the little girl`s father, who just happens to be the cops` main suspect in the child`s disappearance. Why does she want to marry him? And did the suspect write a chilling jailhouse letter that reveals what happened to little Baby Kate?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight, a beautiful 4-month-old baby missing more than a year. Now, in an incredible twist, claims that the child`s mother wants to marry the baby`s father, even though cops say he`s the prime suspect in Baby Kate`s disappearance. And now there`s even a letter reportedly detailing what he says happened to the baby girl. Does it implicate him in his daughter`s death? We`ll investigate this hideous mystery.
 ::snipping2::

ARIEL COURTLAND, MISSING BABY`S MOTHER: I don`t see how she could be OK. But I don`t want to think like that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She`s just a tiny thing. She could be anywhere.

COURTLAND: I don`t know where she`s at. And as a mom, it`s hard.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sean Phillips drove away with 4-month-old Kate Phillips after arguing with her mother.

COURTLAND: This isn`t the Sean that I know. This isn`t the Sean that anybody knows.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are these the clothes that you last saw her in?

COURTLAND: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of Phillips` pockets appeared to be stuffed with something.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And Sean (ph) said that it`s her clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He repeatedly asked Phillips where Kate was. One answer stood out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He then referred to Katherine as dead.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The note found in Sean`s jail clothes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To us that was a confession.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We, the jury, find the defendant guilty.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Guilty of unlawful imprisonment of his daughter, Baby Kate.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The mystery about her whereabouts, a mystery Courtland says she cannot solve.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where is Kate now?

COURTLAND: I have no idea.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, the baffling case of a missing 4-month-old baby girl, a precious child, takes an even more disturbing turn. Baby Kate`s mother, Ariel Courtland, wants to marry the girl`s dad even though he`s the main suspect in this little child`s disappearance.

Good evening. I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell, coming to you live.

Sean Phillips is right now serving 10 to 15 years in prison. Cops got him on unlawful imprisonment in the case of his missing infant daughter. Mom Ariel is barred from even visiting Sean in prison, because she`s considered a victim of the crime. Well, now she says she wants to marry him so she can demand to visit him in the hopes of getting some answers about what really happened to her precious baby.

Baby Kate vanished in June of last year following a big argument between the couple. Ariel says she left Sean and Baby Kate in the car while she quickly went inside her house. When Ariel walked back out, the car was gone. she never saw her baby girl again.

Listen to the message she left Sean`s mother later that day.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

COURTLAND: Hi, Kim, it`s me. You`re missing all my phone calls. That`s fine. But Sean kidnapped our daughter. He has her somewhere. I don`t know what he`s doing. I want my daughter back. And if he has harmed one single hair on her head, I will kill him. Do you understand, Kim? I want my daughter back. And I want her back now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now she wants to marry him.

Our affiliate, WOOD, obtained a jailhouse letter believed to be from Sean to Ariel. It says Baby Kate died by accident as he ripped her car seat out of the car without knowing she was there. Hmm. Is that a confession? Can the story be believed? Is the letter legit? Did he really write it? We`ll analyze all that in a moment.

I want to hear your thoughts on this baffling mystery. Call me: 1- 877-JVM-SAYS, 1-877-586-7297.

Straight out to Leon Hendrix, reporter for WOOD-TV. You`ve been covering this case for a year. What do you make of this jailhouse letter? Why do you think it`s legit? And what`s its significance?

LEON HENDRIX, REPORTER, WOOD-TV (via phone): Well, of course, you know there`s no way to really know if it`s legit. But it sounds like the prosecution, the authorities working on the case, do think it`s legit. And that`s how they`re handling it.

But it was quite the surprise to get. All along, Sean Phillips` defense has been pointing the finger at Ariel, saying that she was the last person with the baby. And now this letter seems to be somewhat of a confession that the baby was in the car, that he took the baby away not realizing that she was there. And somehow accidentally killed her. And then just left her somewhere.

That`s another report about the letter. He says he has no idea where she is. That he just kept driving and left her in what he called a peaceful place.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, what`s fascinating about that is that investigators studied his shoes and found mud and even think they can trace it to a particular marshy area. So he may not remember, but maybe his shoes will reveal what happened.

Now, Baby Kate vanished following a very nasty argument between the couple. Sean was in his car, nobody disputes that, parked in Ariel`s driveway with the baby in the car seat. Sean claims he thought Ariel had taken the baby inside. In his jailhouse letter, purported from him to Ariel, Sean claims he got angry as he drove away and then stopped to dump the car seat outside a fast-food restaurant as a way to get back at her.

Quote, "I grabbed it at the top and ripped it out as hard as I could. She was thrown from it. I didn`t know. I`m so sorry." What?

Steve Moore, former FBI agent, you`ve said the letter is going to sink him. Does it make any sense? I mean, how do you pick up a car seat and throw it and not realize a baby is inside?

STEVE MOORE, FORMER FBI AGENT: You can`t. And how do you throw a car seat out of the car when it`s buckled into the car? Their -- his story makes no sense. He couldn`t have unbuckled it without seeing the baby. He couldn`t have thrown the thing out and had the baby come out because they`re made not to open like that.

What`s going to happen is this letter is going to be used. And it`s going to verify certain parts of his story. And they can dismiss others. He`s just pretty much confessed to most of the murder.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes. Now, they could use that letter against him, potentially. Except maybe he`s told other stories. In fact, he has.

Mom, Ariel Courtland, says Sean initially pressured her to get an abortion. She says they later discussed giving the baby up for adoption. Sean`s attorney grilled Ariel about that on the stand. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You were going to get an application for an abortion online?

COURTLAND: Ask your client. It was his idea.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, I`m asking you.

COURTLAND: I don`t know.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ariel, you texted this to him: "Trying to make the app online."

COURTLAND: I said I don`t know. What do you want me to say? I don`t know is my answer. Move on.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So you asked about an application. What`s the application...

COURTLAND: I don`t know.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. That woman now wants to marry the man who`s the prime suspect in the disappearance of her child. Prosecutors introduced a note found in Sean`s jailhouse jumpsuit following his arrest. In it Sean wrote he had given the baby, Kate, to a man who was supposed to hand her over to some adoptive parents.

Now, Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney, we`ve heard a letter purportedly written by Sean where he says, oh, he accidentally threw the baby out while trying to destroy the car seat in a fit of rage. Now we`re hearing another letter that was found in his pocket, saying he gave the baby to a man who gave it to adoptive parents. How can any of this be used to prosecute him when he`s telling different stories at different times?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes. You know what? It`s interesting, Jane. Because it becomes a question of credibility. The first thing that will happen, of course, is that the defense lawyers will make efforts to keep them out. They`re not sworn statements. They`re not, you know, done with the imprimatur of the court or anything else. However, they are party admission.

So the question is, are they admissible? They probably will be, as ruled by a judge. Then it becomes a question of fact as to whether or not they`re truthful. And when you have someone saying inconsistent things at inconsistent times, it becomes whether or not they lack what we call in law veracity, believability, reliability. And if they`re not reliable, it becomes very problematic.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Joey? Joey?

JACKSON: Yes, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The baby is somewhere.

JACKSON: Yes.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The baby was last seen with this man. They can`t find this precious child, who cops fear is likely dead. They only managed to get him on a lesser charge because as they say, no body, no case. But again, if he`s writing different stories at different times, can they prosecute him successfully for murder?

Dr. Brian Russell, you`re a forensic psychologist. What do you think?

DR. BRIAN RUSSELL, FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, Jane, I remember when we talked about this case when it first broke. And I feel the same about it today as I did back then. It sounds to me like a guy who did not want to be a father. He wanted to get rid of this child. The mother wouldn`t go along. And so he got rid of the child.

We`ve got implausible stories during, after. It`s shades of Casey Anthony, in a way, because even if you accidentally threw your child across a convenience store parking lot, you would immediately call 911 and say, "Oh, my God, I accidentally hurt my child. Please come see if you can save the child."

But we don`t have that. We have concealment of the body. We have telling of stories afterwards to cover up everything. I feel just exactly the same as I did when you and I discussed this like a year ago.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: On the other side, callers lining up. And we`ll tell you why there`s a parallel to the disappearance of Haleigh Cummings. Remember Misty and Ron?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JORDAN HARTLEY, MASON COUNTY SHERIFF`S DEPARTMENT: He was wearing a T-shirt. I could see the muscle on the right bicep was twitching, involuntarily twitching. Very nervous. His stance was a boxer stance. He was clenching his fist.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And that`s law enforcement describing the father of this little baby. His name is Sean Phillips. He`s currently doing some hard time on this disappearance, but they can`t get him on murder, because there is no body of this child.

He claims -- in this letter, purportedly claims that, oh, he didn`t realize that the child was in the car seat, and he in the fit of rage, threw the car seat and the child died. But none of it seems to really make a lot of sense.

We`re going out to the phone lines to try to figure this case out. Rachael, Indiana, your question or thought, Rachael.

CALLER: Yes, Jane. I wanted to know if there`s been any history of mental or physical abuse toward this woman by her husband to make her act the way she`s doing.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Leon Hendrix, what`s the back story on this couple? He`s obviously got problems. Does he have a rap sheet, a history of psychiatric illness? And what about her?

HENDRIX: This is a classic story of high school sweethearts. This couple has been together on again/off again for years since Ariel, the mother, was in her mid-teens.

And what is sad is that she was -- she was, and some still say she is, madly in love with Sean Phillips. And he was trying to pull away from it. They already have one child together. And it was said when she got pregnant with the second child, he really didn`t want that child to be his and was avoiding having the paternity test. And didn`t want to be a part of that. Wanted not to connect with that child. And she was always trying to cling back toward him. That`s how the story goes.

As far as a rap sheet, neither one of them have very serious criminal pasts. In fact, Sean Phillips was in the military before all this.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Leon, what you`ve described is incredible dysfunction. Somebody who wants to have a relationship and apparently doesn`t use the protection that wouldn`t result in a child, but then, "Oh, I don`t want to know if it`s mine." And now the child is missing and presumed dead. And look at this angelic face, relying on adults to protect her.

Ariel, the mother, told a local reporter that she wants to marry Sean. Here`s her stated excuse, so she can go and visit him in prison and get some real answers about what happened to their baby.

Now, Sean, what`s his motive for possibly wanting to marry? Well, in the jailhouse letter he said -- and it`s believed to be from him. He wrote it to Ariel. And he said, "Things spouses tell each other in confidence can`t be made to testify. But we aren`t married yet in the eyes of the government."

So under Michigan law, that spousal privilege is what he appears to be referring to. Guess what? It can`t be used in a criminal case where a child has been harmed.

But, Joey Jackson, it sounds like he may not know the law. So maybe he`s trying to marry her so that she can`t testify against him in a more serious case if it comes up. And that`s not going to work.

JACKSON: Jane, interestingly enough, no, it will not work. Because as you so clearly state and so rightfully state, the marital privilege, which of course, protects communications between husband and spouse and pillow talk, can`t be used in the event that he tells her something incriminating because of the exception where it relates to children and children potentially being hurt. Anything he says to her, it`s fair game.

And so he needs, certainly, to be briefed on the law before he goes and tells her further issues. Although it might be nice if he does, because then, of course, we can get to the bottom of where this child is, did he kill the child, where is the body, et cetera, et cetera, Jane.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: None of it makes sense. If this letter is from him and he says, "Well, I threw the child out in a fit of rage, not realizing she was in the car seat," well, then, how does he not know what he did with the child? And his boots are muddy. And they`re trying to find out exactly what marsh his boots were in.

On the other side, parallels to the Haleigh Cumming case and more calls.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

APRIL LANGE, MISSING BABY`S GRANDMOTHER: Sean doesn`t do anything that he doesn`t want to. You know, Ariel would see him and talk to him every day if she could, to beg where Kate`s at. But I do know they have met twice. And he has not said anything about where she`s at.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That is the grandmother of the missing baby talking about the baby`s father who wrote purportedly in a letter, "I wasn`t dumping a body. It wasn`t like that at all. I want her buried, too. I don`t know where she was left."

You know, it doesn`t really make sense. If he is saying that he was the one who hurt her and essentially killed her, if that`s his letter, then he would know where he put her.

Now, meanwhile the mother of this child wants to marry Sean claiming, "Well, that`s how I can demand to see him in prison and get answers from him."

We`ve seen this before. You remember when 5-year-old Haleigh Cummings vanished from her family`s trailer a few years ago. The precious little girl hasn`t been found. She`s presumed dead. In an eerie parallel, Haleigh`s father, Ron, married then-girlfriend Misty Croslin, who was the last person to see Haleigh alive. Some speculated it was an attempt to avoid have to testify against each other.

But Ron said, "I want to get close, and I want to stay close to Misty so I can find the truth." Is it a realistic way? They`ve since gotten divorced, and they`re both in jail for a long time on drug charges.

Let`s go out to the phone lines. Shannon, North Dakota, your question on this case of this missing Baby Kate.

CALLER: Yes, thanks for taking my call from North Dakota. North Dakota loves you. My theory is, I think the baby was already dead. And he went and disposed of the baby.

And they were supposed to do a DNA test. Why would you want to go back upstairs to get a stroller when you got a car seat to carry the baby in the car seat to go into the hospital to take a DNA test? You wouldn`t need a stroller for that. And did they do any DNA test on the clothing to see if there was any decomposition matter on the clothes at all?

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, Steve Moore, former FBI agent, they haven`t been able to find the body and therefore, the clothes that the child was wearing when she vanished. But what about that idea that this is all fiction and that something happened in the house before the baby was put in the car or maybe the baby was never put in the car seat?

MOORE: Well, you can`t discount that. But what you can do is look at his story step by step by step. If he says something that`s very specific and you can verify it, that`s very helpful. If he says, "Then I left the child with a unicorn and it flew away," then you know he`s back off into the -- into the craziness.

But what -- what you can do is use different parts of the story and find out -- liars like that tend to try and keep it as close to truth as possible. So I think he`s -- I think he`s finished right now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: I think polygraph him and find out where he`s lying. And then do the math, follow the mud on his shoes and find this precious child. She deserves justice.
 ::snipping2::
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MuffyBee
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« Reply #78 on: October 01, 2012, 09:57:05 AM »

http://wkzo.com/news/articles/2012/sep/17/baby-kates-mother-cancels-marriage/
"Baby Kate's" mother cancels marriage
September 17, 2012

LUDINGTON (WKZO) -- Ariel Courtland is not going to marry the man suspected of killing their infant after all.

The mother of "Baby Kate" cancelled the license she had taken out on Friday, convinced it "wasn't the right thing to do."  ::snipping2::

Courtland had originally thought that if she married him, she could confront him face to face and get him to reveal the burial site.  Prison officials have denied her permission to visit him in prison and say that won't change with a marriage.
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« Reply #79 on: October 01, 2012, 10:01:20 AM »

http://news.gather.com/viewArticle.action?articleId=281474981659368
Mother of Missing Child to be on 'Dr. Phil'
September 24, 2012

Mother of missing child Baby Kate Ariel Courtland will be appearing on an episode of Dr. Phil next week. The young mother apparently decided to opt for a national television spot instead of marrying Sean Phillips like she was reportedly toying with the notion of doing recently.
 ::snipping2::
So what could Ariel Courtland have to say to Dr. Phil regarding this case? The missing child is still nowhere to be found, and she apparently can't decide whether she wants to marry the suspect or opt for publicity. It's unlikely this episode of Dr. Phil will help in locating the missing baby, but at least the story will be told and Ariel will give people a live-action view of her to analyze and pick apart.
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