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[Other Ramsey Legal Cases] Legal Cases
State of Colorado vs
Thomas C. Miller

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August 20, 1999
State of Colorado vs Thomas Miller
Charged with Commercial Bribery
Tom Miller found not guilty
By jury of six on June 14, 2001

Thomas C. Miller, 48 is a former criminal defense attorney, a handwriting analyst and a writer. He is accused of introducing Craig Allen Lewis, 44, the news editor of the Globe to J. Don Vacca, a former Denver police officer who is an expert in forensic documents and who was examining the ransom note on behalf of JonBenet's parents, John and Patsy Ramsey.

Thomas Miller is charged with commercial bribery in connection with the alleged attempt to buy a copy of the ransom note for $30,000 from the handwriting expert for the Globe tabloid. He was being accused of working as a broker for the Globe on that illegal ransom-note deal that took place on April 1, 1997.

Miller was indicted by a Jefferson County grand jury on August 20, 1999. Lewis was indited on December 20, 1999 and the evidence against Lewis includes several items seized during a search of Tom Miller's home in Boulder specifically his personal diary that was found when a warrant was served on Judith Phillip's home where the diary was kept. Judith spoke publicly about how the cops banged at her door and demanded to be let in and even threatened her dogs.

The "criminal bribery" charge is based on accusations that Miller and Lewis were inducing an employee to break confidentiality with an employer. In the extortion case, Lewis is accused of sending photographs in August 1998 to Steve Thomas' home in a threat to publish photographs of Thomas' deceased mother along with a story that she comitted suicide. The pictures showed Thomas' mother and his aunt, each deceased. Accompanying them was a letter asking Thomas to grant the Globe an interview.

Delays in Craig Lewis' indictment were because the Globe "sought to enjoin the grand jury's investigations on grounds that Lewis's conduct was protected by the First Amendment basically saying he was just trying to do his job as a reporter.

Miller's attorney also noted testimony from a former Ramsey family lawyer that his firm hired a private detective to investigate Miller's background. He said Vacca and another former Ramsey lawyer wrote Jefferson County Attorney Dave Thomas urging prosecution in the case. Tom Miller said he was only put on trial because of his statements that the ransom note implicated Patsy Ramsey, JonBenét's mother.

On November 8, 2000, the Globe agreed to donate $100,000 to the University of Colorado journalism school in exchange for elimination of bribery and extortion charges against Lewis.

For Tom Miller, the jury returned the verdict after about two hours of deliberation following a three-day trial.

VARIOUS DATES AND HAPPENINGS:

April 1, 1997 (Tuesday): From media reports....Miller met Don Vacca on April 1, 1997, in the lower level of Vacca's Jefferson County home. Miller was accompanied Craig Lewis who was introduced to Vacca as a "representative of a large corporation.'' Lewis offered Vacca $30,000 for the note and showed a large, stuffed manila envelope.

April 8, 1997 (Tuesday): From media reports...."The unidentified man (Craig Lewis) called Vacca three days later and left a message. On April 8, 1997, the unidentified man returned to Vacca's home and asked again to purchase a copy of the note. "He offered more money and asked that if money wasn't of interest to Mr. Vacca, what would be?'' the affidavit states." The man was told to leave and as he drove off, Vacca wrote down the car's license plate number. Vacca traced the license plate to the Hertz rental-car office at Denver International Airport. Investigators determined Lewis rented the car April 4-9, 1997.

November 12, 1999 (Friday): The Thomas C. Miller diary was seized via a search warrant at the home of Judith Phillips. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation learned of the existence of Miller's diary through Miller's estranged wife since April 1996, Michelle Austin who told CBI agents that she has seen entries in Miller's checkbook that Miller received money from the Globe. Austin told her two children to photograph a bookcase at Phillips house during a visit to see their father. The photographs showed the diaries on the bookcase, and Austin turned the photos over to the CBI.

December 14, 1999 (Tuesday): District Judge Christopher J. Munch ruled prosecutors can use the seized diary of Tom Miller that might implicate Lewis in the April 1, 1997, attempt to purchase a copy of the ransom note for $30,000.

March 3, 2000 (Friday): A Jefferson County judge refused to disqualify the prosecutor, Dennis Hall from the case. Miller's attorneys said Hall reported Miller for calling CBI agents "a bunch of f------ Nazis" and for giving Hall the Nazi salute after court hearings in December. Hall filed a complaint for ethics violations against Miller with the Supreme Court Disciplinary Counsel. Miller put his license to practice law on inactive status in 1998 for health reasons.

April 14, 2000 (Friday): Craig Lewis' attorney argued several motions, including "whether the grand jury was properly instructed and the constitutionality of all the statutes."

November 8, 2000 (Wednesday): On November 8, 2000, the Globe agreed to donate $100,000 to the University of Colorado journalism school in exchange for elimination of bribery and extortion charges against Lewis.

May 3, 2001 (Thursday): District Judge Jane Tidball from Jefferson County rejected a bid to dismiss charges against Tom Miller. Miller's attorney said evidence presented to the grand jury that indicted Miller was tainted and that the prosecutors were guilty of misconduct. Those who were supposed to be in attendance were Peter Boyles, John and Barbara Fernie and Fleet and Priscilla White and Steve Thomas.

June 12, 2001 (Tuesday): Thomas Miller trial date set.

June 14, 2001 (Thursday): Thomas Miller was aquitted of the charges.

June 18, 2001 (Monday): Tom Miller appeared on the Peter Boyles show where "Skydog" of Cybersleuths Forum reported, "Tom said the charges were brought by Dave Thomas under presssure from Hal Haddon. Tom says that Hal and Dave go way back and were both involved in the Organized Crime Task Force in Denver a few years ago. Tom said that Denver DA Dave Thomas was in Haddon's "pocket". Haddon knew that Tom was a court certified handwriting expert and when Tom studied the ransom note and publicly stated that Patsy was the writer, Haddon went after Tom Miller to "shut him up". Miller said that Haddon tried to hang a felony charge on him to ruin his ability to testify against Patsy."

June 26, 2001 (Tuesday): Tom Miller appeared in a guest chat for the CrimeNews2000 forum on the Internet in IRC chat and answered some interesting questions.


June 26, 2001 CrimeNews2000 Chat

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Tom Miller is writing a book entitled "Murder in Small Places" about the criminal justice system in Colorado. It specifically addresses the need for systemic change and illustrates how the Ramsey case exposes "bought" justice.

Other published works include "Driving Through Denver and Defending the Gun", with defense of the Second Amendment, for the Colorado Trial Lawyer
s Association in 1997. His article helped change Colorado's concealed carry laws even after the Columbine Tragedy.

Other Tom Miller Links
  
10-31-1997Fax to Tom Miller from Darney Hoffman
11-03-1997Miller's Handwriting Analysis (with partial exemplars)
11-12-1997AFFIDAVIT OF THOMAS C. MILLER

Tom Miller and Craig Lewis Media Links
  
Date Links to News Articles
  
07-28-1999The Tabloid Turncoat - The Shapiro Tapes
08-21-1999Man indicted on charges of trying to buy ransom note
10-05-1999Globe editor fights charges (Craig Lewis)
10-06-1999Judge orders delay in Ramsey-related probe (Craig Lewis)
10-21-1999The Tab, Please
11-18-1999Seized diary could aid in probe
11-19-1999Boulder lawyer's diary seized
12-16-1999Indictment of Globe news editor expected today
12-18-1999Prosecutors maintain silence in tabloid case
  
02-18-2000Boulder officers are subpoenaed in tabloid case
03-04-2000Judge: Prosecutor to stay on Ramsey ransom note case
05-19-20002 figures fail in attempt to sidestep charges
11-06-2000Ethics foul nets $100k donation to SJMC
11-06-2000GLOBAL IRONY!! Tabloid’s shame is school's $100K gain
11-09-2000Tabloid to donate $100K to CU
11-29-2000Tabloid donates $100K to CU
  
05-05-2001Denver Post: Judge upholds ransom-note case
05-05-2001Daily Camera: Lawyer to stand trial
06-14-2001Miller denies role in plan for ransom note
06-14-2001Handwriting expert says he didn't know reporter sought note
06-14-2001Daily Camera: Case dismissed
06-15-2001Ex-lawyer acquitted in ransom note case
Patsy Ramsey killed daughter, Miller says
06-18-2001Tom Miller on Peter Boyles as reported by "Skydog"
06-26-2001Tom Miller Internet chat with Crimenews2000 (Transcript)
06-29-2001RAMSEY MURDER Case has left us incommunicado

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