Discussion in 'Daily Media Links-Gabriel Johnson' started by Angel Who Cares, Mar 5, 2010.
2010.03.05 - 07 Today's Current News - ***NO DISCUSSIONS HERE PLEASE ***
Troubled pasts of women in 'Baby Gabriel’ case
March 5, 2010 - 8:36PM
When Tammi Smith and Elizabeth Johnson met for the first time in August at Boston’s Logan International Airport, Johnson no longer wanted to be a mother. And Smith badly wanted to be a mother again. Smith, 37, of Scottsdale, and Johnson, 23, of Tempe, have troubled pasts, similar dysfunctional histories in their relationships and criminal records, according to police reports and court documents.
They are scheduled to appear for separate hearings in Maricopa County Superior Court on Tuesday , both on felony charges in connection with the missing child that Johnson initially said she killed but later claimed hat she had given to an unknown couple in the parking lot of a motel, according to Maricopa County Superior Court documents.
Johnson’s attorney, Vanessa Smith, who works for the Maricopa County Public Defender’s Office, has filed a motion with the court to ban any media coverage of the court proceedings, arguing that it would infringe on Johnson’s right to a fair trial and jeopardize her safety.
Repeated requests for interviews with Smith and her lawyer in recent weeks were declined. Requests for jailhouse interviews with Johnson also were denied.
For eight weeks, the Tribune has combed through police reports and court records from numerous jurisdictions across the country and conducted interviews with more than a dozen people related to the case and the pair’s pasts. Together, the documents and interviews reveal the story of a troubled young mother eager to be free from her baby and a woman desperate for a second chance at motherhood.
Smith once worked as an exotic dancer in New Orleans, aspired to be a country music singer pursuing fortune and fame in Nashville, Tenn., and at one time was married to two men at the same time, according to police reports and court records. In 2001, she paid to give her three children up for adoption to her ex-husband and his wife after a costly 2½-year custody battle, according to Smith and the second of her five husbands, Kieth Facio. More recently, Smith tried to adopt children from China and Africa, according to her MySpace page, which has since been blocked from public view and Facio.
Johnson, meanwhile, grew up with her twin brother in five different foster homes before the age of 10 due to her drug-addicted mother drowning when Elizabeth was about 12 and her father dying of liver cancer in 2007, according to Johnson’s grandfather, Robert Johnson of Scottsdale.
A mother’s rage
In the last year alone, Johnson’s relationship with Gabriel’s father, Logan McQueary, was marked by her outbursts of rage as she destroyed three apartments by tearing up clothes and a couch with a large knife before demolishing a baby bed, smashing a television set and breaking windows, according to Tempe police reports. When Gabriel would cry, McQueary said that Johnson would shout at him: “Shut that damn baby up!” according to a police report.
In the ongoing investigation, authorities have compiled 1,575 pages of discovery and 52 CDs of recorded interviews, according to Maricopa County Superior Court documents. As the story of “Baby Gabriel” has played out on national television shows, the Web search engine “Google News” shows more than 1 million hits, mostly originating from media outlets throughout the Valley, according to Maricopa County Superior Court records. On the social networking site Facebook, five pages dedicated to the search for Gabriel have at least 14,000 members.
Desperation and deception
Investigators said it was Tammi Smith’s “desperate attempts” to adopt the child that hindered the investigation. Police allege that the Smiths had a plan in place to adopt Gabriel or were developing a plan to somehow pick up the child in Nashville, Tenn., and her contradictory statements to police and to the media led to her arrest. Jack Smith, a former pedal steel guitarist in the Grand Ole Opry’s House Band in Nashville and a former studio musician for country music singer “Whisperin’ Bill” Anderson, was cleared in the case.
Neglect and silence
Smith’s oldest daughter, Gabriele Victoria Facio, 19, recently wrote in a Facebook message to a Tribune reporter that she only considers Tammi her biological mother and not her “real mother.” “She neglected us,” Gabriele Facio said. “She took us, sorta kidnapped us, right before I turned 6. After that, my dad had enough and divorced her. She wanted money and fame. She didn’t like working or taking care of children. It was never her thing. She wanted to make an album, be a country singer. That’s when she met Jack and left her guy. “In the end, it was us or him. She chose him.” Gabriele also said she helped raised her siblings.
Johnson’s attorneys are urging her to remain quiet as part of their legal strategy. But her grandfather wants her to come clean — now. “Tell them where the baby is and get on with it,” Robert Johnson said. “If the baby is alive and well, she’ll be able to get out of jail, but she seems content with staying there. “I just don’t understand. I still don’t understand why she won’t say where that baby is.”
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'Medium' psychic says Baby Gabriel will be found
Posted on March 4, 2010 at 12:22 PM
A psychic who appears on the CBS television series "Medium" is weighing in on the case of Baby Gabriel.
Allison Dubois says she believes Gabriel will be found in a place where helicopters have already searched, but that he won't be found right away.
Dubois says it could take up to a year.
Video: 'Medium' psychic says Baby Gabriel will be found 0:48
El Paso's secret agent still on the job: Latest case focuses on 8-month-old Arizona boy
El Paso Times
Posted: 03/07/2010 12:00:00 AM MST
Jay J. Armes, El Paso's controversial and flamboyant private investigator, is back in the spotlight -- just as he likes it.
This time he is trying to find out what happened to 8-month-old Gabriel Johnson of Tempe, Ariz., who was last seen on Dec. 26 in San Antonio with his mother, Elizabeth Johnson.
"I got so many agents working on it that I know we'll find him. I selected these agents myself. They are top-notch."
Among those helping Armes are Bill Dear, a private investigator from Dallas who ran for governor in last week's Democratic primary election, and the Pinkerton Detective Agency.
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