Undertake a Grand Jury to Investigate Prince's Death
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Mark Metz, County Attorney
Carver County Attorney's Office
604 East Fourth Street
Chaska MN 55318
Erica H. MacDonald, United States Attorney
United States Attorney's Office - District of Minnesota
300 S 4th Street Suite 600
Minneapolis, MN 55415
Dear Mark Metz and Erica H. MacDonald,
Re: Petition for a Grand Jury to investigate Prince's Death!
We, the undersigned and the signatories to this Petition, are writing to respectfully petition that a Grand Jury investigation be undertaken to uncover the complete truth about the death of Prince Rogers Nelson (aka "Prince" or "Prince Roger Nelson") -- whose sad and untimely demise occurred on April 21, 2016.
The Grand Jury investigation will enable relevant parties to be subpoenaed and cross-examined under oath by experienced prosecutors.
On April 19, 2018, we heard the Carver County Attorney, Mark Metz, announce at the press conference held at the Carver County Justice Center the closure of the investigation and that no charges would be filed in relation to the death of Prince.
We noted that Dr. Schulenberg has agreed to pay $30,000 in a civil settlement with the U.S. Attorney's Office for violation of the Controlled Substances Act due to his prescription of a controlled medication under Kirk Johnson's name for Prince.
We also noted that Andrew Kornfeld, was not castigated for violating the Controlled Substances Act. Although he is not a medical doctor, he carried, interstate from California to Minnesota, a controlled substance that he was not authorized to handle or administer and then sought to protect himself by using the "Good Samaritan" law to call 911.
We have reviewed the investigation documents released by Carver County and identified several red flags in the investigation documents and photos taken at Paisley Park. We believe that the investigation was not properly handled.
The red flags indicate that the complexity of the case was beyond the capacity and expertise of the Carver County investigators. The red flags also indicate that the investigation was severely compromised; therefore, Prince has unfairly been denied justice.
The red flags that we noted include:
- Failure to take control of and secure Paisley Park until all evidence gathering had been completed – this gave sufficient time for the crime scene to be tampered with, staged (pills and money spread in various locations in Paisley Park), and documents and other evidence destroyed and removed from Paisley Park by parties who sought to cover up;
- Failure to remove and control all computers and laptops that Prince actively used. Investigators did not remove a laptop that they saw in Prince's bedroom until five days after Prince's death. Again, this gave ample time for email correspondence and files to be deleted by parties who sought to cover up;
- Failure to take fingerprints of Prince and fingerprints on pill bottles, money and other items at Paisley Park, and investigators touching evidence without wearing gloves. In addition, latent fingerprint and DNA findings were not compared with any suspects during the investigation;
- Failure to probe discrepancies in statements provided by witnesses who were present when Prince passed out on the plane from the Atlanta concert, and deferential treatment, including leading and suggesting answers to a witness;
- Failure to probe an Associate's statement that he removed prescribed medications because Prince allegedly said a medication was not working for him, but then he could not recall what he did with the medications;
- Failure to examine the background of various parties that are relevant to the investigation. For example, the drug use history and drugs held by all relevant parties should have been probed;
- Failure to determine if there had been malfeasance and fraud going on regarding Paisley Park and Prince's assets that may have motivated any party to cause him harm – the spread of cash around Paisley Park, and an employee carrying significant cash belonging to Paisley Park in her handbag suggests laxity in internal controls that could facilitate malfeasance;
- Failure to examine legal agreements, past and ongoing lawsuits, domestic and international business arrangements, and financial records for evidence of any party that may have been motivated to cause Prince harm. For instance, Prince had a very well documented contentious relationship with a music industry firm. He had engaged in a protracted legal battle and regained control of the master recording copyright of his music in April 2014. This caused considerable anxiety for the executives of the music industry firm.
- Failure to investigate a CNN report on the morning of April 21, 2016, that gunshots were heard at Paisley Park and believed to involve a Paisley Park employee. All information of this report was deleted from the internet.
- Failure to follow-up on leads provided by relatives, close friends, and former managers and staff of Paisley Park who reached out to investigators.
- Failure to properly gather all evidence relevant to the investigation before cremation of the decedent. Prince was cremated 29 hours after he was found dead. According to the FAQ section on the cremationsocietyofmn.com website, "the county Medical Examiner typically takes 2-3 business days to approve cremation…. The only delay would be if a Medical Examiner deemed it necessary to investigate the death or question the cause of death."
- Failure to establish without a shadow of doubt that Prince himself administered the fatal dose of fentanyl that killed him. Despite an ongoing investigation, the Midwest Medical Examiner deemed Prince's cause of death as "decedent self-administered fentanyl overdose".
- The Medical Examiner in this case, Dr. A. Quinn Strobl, is considered a "fentanyl expert" with multiple articles on fentanyl and opioids appearing in JAMA and other medical journals. A simple hair follicle test would have established if Prince was a long-term fentanyl user and provided a timeline of fentanyl use going back three months, if such use had occurred. This is a fact one would assume a "fentanyl expert" would know and consider administering during an autopsy.
- The Medical Examiner reported that the Fentanyl level in Prince's blood was 67.8 mcg, which is almost 17 times the normal level of 3 to 5 mcg for cancer patients! This high level was discovered during an autopsy examination which occurred 24 hours after Prince was found.
- It is believed he could have been dead for more than six hours prior to his discovery, therefore, considering that fentanyl has a half-life of 6-24 hours and continues to metabolize after death, could the level of fentanyl in Prince's body have been more astronomical at time of death than the high level found at autopsy 30 hours later?
- This would suggest that the potential cause of death should be "homicide by fentanyl toxicity"! The Medical Examiner's report that the decedent self-administered a fatal fentanyl dose as cause of death while there was an active investigation by the Sheriff's Office and DEA is questionable and not considered "standard protocol".
- The reported high level of fentanyl toxicity that apparently killed Prince also raises questions about why the Sheriff's officers, emergency services staff, and Paisley Park employees were able to handle Prince's body without protective Hazmat wear.
- The investigators woefully failed to provide us with irrefutable evidence that Prince himself took the fentanyl tablets that were labeled as Watson 853 (Acetaminophen and Hydrocodone) which caused his death. The tests that Dr. Schulenberg performed the day before Prince was found dead indicate that there was no fentanyl in his blood.
There is ample evidence to support the fact that Prince had several plans which do not support the narrative that he may have taken his own life. Prince was working with a new band with young musicians on a new album; he released a new album and a song from an upcoming new album; started writing his memoirs for a book which the publisher will release later this year; ordered several new shoes for his Summer tour; ordered a custom designed Alpha Piano in Austria for his upcoming “Piano And A Microphone” European tour; received a brand new piano from Yamaha, and also a new custom guitar; asked the Musical Director who did orchestral compositions for his albums to block time on his calendar in the Summer so they could work on a new Minneapolis sound following the release of his song "Baltimore"; renovated the Sound Stage at Paisley Park to host his solo 'Piano And A Microphone' concert and planned concerts for various artists; was mentoring several young musicians; and reached out to several previous colleagues.
Due to the Interstate and International nature of Prince's work, we humbly and respectfully request that US Attorney Erica H. MacDonald convene a Grand Jury, as soon as possible, to properly investigate Prince Rogers Nelson's death. All Prince's associates, employees, managers, tour managers, bodyguards, attorneys, relatives, ex-wives, girlfriends, proteges, musicians, close friends, business associates, vendors he collaborated with, and executives of music industry firms that Prince had contractual relationships with should be subpoenaed to testify under oath so that the true circumstances surrounding the untimely and unfortunate death of Prince can be determined without a shadow of doubt! Anything less is unacceptable!
Otherwise, we are left with a very painful reminder that the State, City and community that Prince so loved, and made famous worldwide, abysmally failed to properly investigate his unfortunate death and grant him the justice he so deserved.
Thanks in advance for your kind cooperation and prompt attention to this matter!
Signed by the following who represent various "Justice and Truth for Prince" groups:
Mag. Sabine Lengyel-Sigl
Attorney General Lori Swanson
Office of the Attorney General
State of Minnesota
Governor Mark Dayton
Office of Governor
State of Minnesota
Carver County Sheriff
Carver County Sheriff's Office
Carver County Commissioner – District 2
Carver County Government Center
Denny Laufenburger, Mayor
City of Chanhassen
Brian K. McKnight, Special Agent in Charge,
US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)
Minneapolis District Office
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