[an error occurred while processing this directive]

I-Team obtains new video in ongoing case

Updated: Tuesday, December 17, 2013 |
I-Team obtains new video in ongoing case  story image
VAN BUREN COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – Newschannel 3’s I-Team has uncovered new information in a case we’ve been following out of Van Buren County for months.

A jury has made a decision on a controversial court case involving an attorney from Kent County who alleges he had bogus criminal charges filed against him in Van Buren County.

Attorney Donovan Visser was charged with misdemeanor assault back in May after he barged into the business he thought he had a right to repossess.

The assault case went to trial recently and ended in a hung jury. We have learned that Visser will be tried again on the same charge.

On Monday the I-Team obtained video recorded by Visser’s client Bob Baker, video that Visser and Baker say should raise questions about why taxpayers are paying for trials.

The video we obtained through the Freedom of Information Act shows a scene that is certainly chaotic at times.

In the video you can see Visser arguing with employees of a company called ELC located in Antwerp Township.

Visser, with his client Baker, armed with a court order are trying to pick up documents and other materials as part of a repossession to pay off a debt.

Ultimately a deputy arrived and took reports from everyone involved. In that report one employee insisted to the deputy that she was shoved by Visser.

Based on that evidence the Van Buren County prosecuting attorney charged Visser with assault and trespassing and his client Baker with trespassing.

Ultimately all the charges were dismissed or thrown out, except Visser’s assault charge which went to trial and ended in a hung jury.

Over the summer Visser and Baker told the I-Team that they thought the charges against them were retribution for questioning the integrity of Circuit Court Judge Paul Hamre, who is currently under investigation by the Attorney Grievance Commission for his handling of Baker and Visser’s civil repossession case.

You may remember that the I-Team obtained an audio recording that Baker and Visser recorded over the phone, a recording they contend proves that Judge Hamre acted unethically, among several other allegations.

They say the judge made a derogatory remark against Donovan Visser.

As for the criminal charges, Baker says the evidence shows the situation is bogus. Baker points to the deputy’s review of the incident in a report. Which reads in part;

“I reviewed the videos that were downloaded from this phone and did not find anything criminal in nature although I did notice several subjects inside of the ELC putting their hands on Visser as he marched around the inside of the office trying to remove paperwork.”

Baker also points to the fact that video shows employees shoving Visser yet those employees were not charged with a crime.

Van Buren County Prosecutor Mike Bedford again defended his office’s decision to move forward with the trial and perhaps a retrial of Visser on a misdemeanor charge, saying he would never go to trial against someone he didn’t think was guilty.

comments powered by Disqus
advertisement

What do you want to see?

If you have a story idea for the I-Team, you can contact us using the form below or by calling 269-388-4612.
Please re-enter the code shown in the image below.

Business News

Last Update on August 20, 2014 17:13 GMT

APPLE-STOCK

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Apple's stock touched a new high Wednesday, reflecting investors' renewed faith in CEO Tim Cook's ability to outwit the competition and expand the technological hit factory built by the late Steve Jobs.

The milestone represents a dramatic turnaround in sentiment since Apple's shares reached its previous split-adjusted peak of $100.72 in September 2012. The shares peaked at $100.77 Wednesday morning, giving it a market value of roughly $600 billion -- more than any other publicly held company.

Apple's stock fell to a split-adjusted $55.01 in April 2013 to wipe out about $300 billion in shareholder wealth amid worries that the Cupertino, California, company had run out of ideas without Jobs as its mastermind.

Those concerns have faded amid high hopes for an iPhone with a bigger screen.

EARNS-TARGET

NEW YORK (AP) -- Target has slashed its annual profit outlook as the retailer continues to reel from a massive data breach, a disappointing expansion in Canada and sluggish sales in the U.S.

The nation's third-largest retailer also said Wednesday that its second-quarter earnings dropped 61.7 percent.

The Minneapolis-based company says it earned $234 million, or 37 cents per share, in the quarter that ended Aug. 2, compared with earnings of $611 million, or 95 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 1.7 percent to $17.4 billion, slightly above the $17.38 billion estimate from FactSet.

Excluding expenses related to the breach, the company earned 78 cents per share, which was in line with Target's reduced estimate issued earlier in the month.

Analysts had expected 79 cents per share, according to FactSet.

EARNS-LOWE'S

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Lowe's second-quarter net income increased 10 percent, bolstered by improving weather.

The home improvement company's performance beat analysts' expectations, but the Mooresville, North Carolina, company lowered its full-year revenue outlook slightly, citing its year-to-date sales and prior assumptions for the second half.

Lowe's Cos. earned $1.04 billion, or $1.04 per share, for the three months ended Aug. 1. A year earlier it earned $941 million, or 88 cents per share.

Analysts expected $1.02 per share.

Revenue rose 6 percent to $16.6 billion from $15.71 billion, topping Wall Street's $16.57 billion forecast.

Sales at stores open at least a year, a key indicator of a retailer's health, climbed 4.4 percent.

Lowe's now anticipates full-year revenue rising about 4.5 percent. Its prior outlook was for an approximately 5 percent increase.

BARNES & NOBLE-SAMSUNG

B&N and Samsung introduce co-branded tablet

NEW YORK (AP) -- Barnes & Noble and Samsung on Wednesday unveiled a new co-branded tablet called the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook that will replace B&N's own Nook tablets.

The 7-inch tablet will sell for $179 after a $20 instant rebate, the same entry price of the non-branded Samsung Galaxy Tab 4.

The move had been expected, since Barnes & Noble said in June it would team up with Samsung to develop Nook tablets that would be available in August.

For the first time, the Nook will have a front- and rear-facing camera. It comes with more than $200 in content from the Nook Store, including books, TV shows and magazines. However, apps are limited to Nook apps rather than the full suite of Android apps available on Google Play.

BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY-SETTLEMENT

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- Warren Buffett's company has agreed to an $896,000 penalty for failing to tell regulators about a December 2013 investment in wallboard maker USG Corp.

The Federal Trade Commission said Wednesday that Berkshire Hathaway Inc. should have notified the Justice Department before it converted $325 million of senior USG notes it held into 21.4 million shares of the company.

Because Berkshire was already a significant USG shareholder, antitrust laws required it to notify regulators because of the size of the deal.

Regulators say Berkshire made a similar mistake six months earlier when it acquired securities in Symetra Financial Corp.

Berkshire officials did not immediately respond to questions about the settlement Wednesday.

Besides investments, Berkshire owns more than 80 subsidiaries in a variety of industries, including insurance, utilities, railroads, retail and manufacturing.

CUTLERY MAKER-BANKRUPTCY

BUCKLAND, Mass. (AP) -- The nation's oldest cutlery manufacturer has filed for bankruptcy after 177 years of making knives and other kitchen tools.

The Recorder of Greenfield reports that Lamson & Goodnow Manufacturing Co. of Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this month, which protects the company from creditors as it reorganizes.

The business has also put its 18-acre factory complex up for sale.

According to federal bankruptcy court in Springfield, the company filed for bankruptcy protection as a result of two multimillion dollar loans it could not repay. The company owes $1 million on a U.S. Small Business Administration loan and more than $2 million to the small business corporation in New York.

Founded in 1837, the company has been owned by James Ross Anderson since 1998.

HOUSE GOP-BUSINESS GROUP

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is stepping in to help an establishment-preferred Republican in a bruising three-way Arizona primary in one of the most competitive House districts in the country.

The powerful business group is putting hundreds of thousands of dollars behind a television ad for state House Speaker Andy Tobin, who has struggled to raise money. His two rivals -- businessman and rancher Gary Kiehne and state lawmaker Adam Kwasman -- are already on the air with TV ads.

The primary is Tuesday but early voting began July 31.

The Chamber ad, which begins airing on Thursday, focuses on Tobin, calling him a "rock solid conservative," and the Democratic incumbent, Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick.

The commercial makes no mention of the two other Republican candidates.

advertisement