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State Destroys All Evidence

Jesse Brooks' prosecutor Janice Rundles has left the Attorney General's Office but not before making sure that the EVIDENCE WAS DESTROYED in Jesse's case.  She wanted to be sure that there were no future prospects to uncover his wrongful conviction. Janice Rundles willfully hid facts that would prove Jesse Brooks’ innocence.  Upon her departure, she turned the case over to Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Strelzin who along with Rundles was part of Kelly Ayotte’s death penalty prosecution team against Michael Addison. (Click here)


Janice Rundles filed and was granted a DESTRUCTION OF EVIDENCE MOTION despite a timely offer by Jesse Brooks to save the State the expense of destroying the evidence and preserving it in storage at no expense to the State.  Jesse was not opposed to returning Jack Reid’s personal items or Mr. Reid’s truck to his family. He simply asked to test the truck seat before returning it and to be allowed to keep the evidence the State wished to destroy.     


In the decision State of New Hampshire v. Robert Breest No. 2013-081 (N.H. Dec, 19, 2014), the Supreme Court recognized that advances in forensic evidence can be considered when challenging convictions, and yet the ability to take advantage of such advances will be forever lost if the items are destroyed. This is exactly the position Jesse Brooks now finds himself in. (Click here to read Motion for Reconsideration)


Although there was never a shred of evidence that linked Jesse Brooks to the death of Jack Reid, the perjured testimony of the incentivized witnesses was never verified against the evidence the State presented. Consider, for example, the State’s star witness Joseph Vrooman who disclosed for the first time during Jesse’s trial that he “SAT” on Jack Reid’s head – this revelation was made after 3 years of investigating and more than a dozen interviews.  That “NEW” information warranted the need to test the truck seat for traces of blood since Michael Benton, Robin Knight and Vrooman all testified that Jack Reid’s head was bleeding profusely after Benton went “crazy” and struck Reid’s head repeatedly with a hammer that he picked up off a workbench in the Deerfield barn.

Joseph Vrooman CHANGED his prior testimony.

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Despite the fact that Joseph Vrooman admitted to sitting on Mr. Reid’s bloodied head and then driving Reid’s truck, without changing his clothes, from Deerfield, NH to Saugus, MA – the State made a conscious decision not to test the truck seat or a blanket in the cab for traces of blood according to the deposition of NH State Police Officer Frederick Lulka and an email between the State lab and prosecutor Kirsten Wilson. Furthermore, Vrooman and Benton gave entirely different accounts of the plastic that Vrooman placed around Jack Reid’s head to contain the blood after the two of them ended Jack Reid’s life.


What kind of investigation is that? Not much. 


According to Dr. Brent Turvey, a forensic criminologist who has worked many death penalty cases for attorneys and police departments – 

"It is impossible to destroy all traces of blood without industrial chemicals. Luminol is a presumptive test that finds blood if it exists, even after cleaning efforts, in concentrations as low as one part per million."

Dr. Turvey went on to say that, “The evidence in this [Jack Reid] case has never had its day in court” and since that time, mountains of new evidence have come to light.

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If you are seeking the truth - you question and test everything – not just what supports your conviction.



  • Why did the State decide not to test the truck seat for traces of blood?

  • Why did the State remove the truck seat if they didn’t intend to test it?

  • Why did the State decide not to test the blanket found in the cab of the truck?

  • Why did NH State Police Officer Lulka neglect to log the blanket into evidence when he did a comprehensive inventory of the truck on 09/16/05? Massachusetts State Police transferred the truck 09/15/05 to NHSP having noted a blanket in the cab of the truck. 

  • Why did NHSP Officer Lulka change the description of the blanket to a white sheet during his deposition?

  • Why did blood testing by NH Criminologist Mary Dawson show no results to the inside of the cab but Massachusetts claimed its’ tests were positive?

  • Why wasn’t NH State Police Crime Lab Serology and DNA Expert Susan Faith informed that Jack Reid’s DNA was collected during the autopsy in Massachusetts?

  • Why was Vrooman’s 9/12/08 polygraph conducted to exclude “sitting on” Jack Reid and why was it administered by Nick Willard, another Ayotte death penalty trial team member versus NH State Police.

  • Why did Vrooman wait until Jesse’s 2009 trial to admit to sitting on Jack Reid?

  • Why would Senior Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Strelzin fight to destroy the evidence in a homicide case when there is NO STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS to the prosecution of a homicide?  (Click here to read article) Strelzin is quoted in the article. The law removes the statute of limitations, or deadline, for when people can be prosecuted for crimes related to murders. They include such infractions as falsifying evidence, threatening witnesses or lying. 
    The law applies to everyone – including law enforcement.

  • Keep in mind – none of these acts can be explained away by claiming budgetary constraints. Police and prosecutors appeared to have no fiscal constraints when they made repeated trips to Las Vegas in force and traveled the country trying to dig up dirt. And yet, they NEVER INTERVIEWED JESSE BROOKS.

  • Why the rush to destroy evidence?  Click here to read Concord Monitor Letter to the Editor


Why rush to destroy evidence? The answer is simple. The prosecution team made every effort to cover Vrooman’s involvement, that way, they could use Benton and Vrooman as cooperating witnesses. As a result, the jury believed Vrooman’s fabricated bedroom planning meeting in Nevada where he claimed Jesse Brooks was present.  Jesse’s trial lawyers* failed to present the certified documents showing Jesse’s actual whereabouts at that time and the State also made a deliberate decision NOT to investigate because they would have been obligated by law to turn over the evidence.  Jesse Brooks played NO ROLE whatsoever but was consequently convicted because the evidence was never presented and now Janice Rundles and Jeffrey Strelzin have destroyed the evidence in the only other death penalty case in the State of New Hampshire in the last 75 years.  


NH Attorney General Kelly Ayotte stated April 27th, 2007 at a press conference she organized to impose the death penalty against John Brooks: “I have thoroughly and carefully examined the facts and circumstances of this case.”


Former United States Attorney General Eric Holder has stated:

"There is always the possibility that mistakes will be made. ... It is for that reason that I am opposed to the death penalty.''


There is no question that mistakes were made in the Jack Reid case and to have destroyed the evidence is unconscionable, but it appears to have served New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte’s political aims very well. The prosecution of two capital cases squared with her stance on the death penalty in which was “by the switch” according to an email she neglected to delete when planning her campaign for a U.S. Senate seat. And proof of any prosecutorial or police shortcuts, fabrications or misconduct that may have happened along the way would be neatly disposed of along with the destruction of the evidence. 

(Click here to read what colleagues had to say about “by the switch” emails)

Excerpts from State's Evidence
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