1988 Nebraska Murder Case -- Looking for Help

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Re: Boppre, was he framed? Maybe just a third Accomplice?

Postby FranklinCase Admin » Wed Jun 14, 2006 3:48 am

Sorry it took me so long to get to this one FourthBase, extremely interesting case, and one I had never heard of as well. The very first article I can find with Boppre’s name is very interesting. <br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 9-22-88} <br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>In the last weeks of his life, Richard Valdez told family and friends that someone was out to kill him.</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>"He told me if he was killed, he would write his name in his own blood - he'd write the name of the guy that did the shooting," said his father, Gilbert Valdez Sr.</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br>Valdez, 25, and his girlfriend, Sharon Condon, 19, were found shot to death Monday in a farmhouse Valdez rented near a rural cemetery north of Scotts- bluff, Neb.<br>Scrawled on the wall near them, in blood, was the name "Jeff," the elder Valdez said Wednesday.<br><br>Scotts Bluff County Sheriff Chuck Fairbanks said Wednesday that a felony arrest warrant has been issued for a suspect in the case: Jeff J. Boppre, 25, of Scottsbluff.<br><br>Fairbanks said Boppre is a white male, 5-foot-8, 180 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He said law enforcement agencies investigating the case are asking for citizens to notify police if they have information on Boppre's location.<br><br>Fairbanks said he could not verify Gilbert Valdez Sr.'s assertion that the name "Jeff" was written on the wall at the murder scene.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>The following day the Omaha World Herald released this article, however, with a different bend on the writing made on the wall.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 9-23-88} <br>A man suspected of shooting two people to death near Scottsbluff, Neb., was arrested Thursday afternoon at his father's home, authorities said.<br><br>Jeff J. Boppre's car was sighted heading back to Scottsbluff at about 4:30 p.m., and law officers later arrested the 25-year-old, rural Scottsbluff man without incident, Scotts Bluff County Attorney Brian Silverman said.<br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Valdez scrawled the letters "JFF BOPE" with white grease on the bloody floor of his kitchen before he died, authorities said.</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Drugs may have played a role in the deaths, which occurred sometime Monday morning, authorities said.<br><br>Shell casings found at the scene matched others found at the home of Boppre's father, Clarence Boppre, where Boppre was living, authorities said.</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Then William Alan Niemann’s name pops up the next day as a suspect who had been arrested in connection to case, but had only been arrested for felony theft.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 9-24-88}<br>Jeff Boppre allegedly shot and killed a Scottsbluff, Neb., resident and his pregnant girlfriend, a state's witness in protective custody has reportedly told investigators.<br><br>Details of the account were alleged in a press release issued by the Scotts Bluff Sheriff's Office Friday in announcing the arrest of Alan Niemann, 23, of Scottsbluff. <!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Niemann was arrested for felony theft in connection with the shooting deaths of Richard Valdez, 25, and Sharon Condon, 19,</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--> Monday at the home Valdez rented north of Scotts- bluff, according to the press release.<br><br>Boppre, 25, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the slayings. <br><br>Investigators have said shell casings found at the scene match those at the Boppre family residence, where the suspect lived with his father. Illegal drugs and $1,000 in cash also were found at the scene.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>At this point it seems like the case began to favor the story that Boppre had killed Valdez and Condon because of drug deals gone awry. Here is also the first time that Kernnard Wasmer’s name comes up in the Omaha World Herlad. (The second of the two, the other being Alan Niemann, who Boppre claims actually committed the murders.)<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 10-2-88} <br>Jeff Boppre showed no emotion as three of his friends testified during the four-hour hearing in Scotts Bluff County Court that he had talked of killing Richard Valdez for money from drug deals.<br><br>"Jeff said he got $700 for taking two peoples' lives. He said it wasn't good, but it wasn't bad." said Alan Niemann, 23.<br><br>He testified that on the night of Sept. 18 Boppre asked him to kill Valdez. "Jeff asked me if I would shoot Richard Valdez," Niemann said. "I told him I couldn't."<br><br>Kenard Wasmer, 27, of Scottsbluff, also testified that Boppre asked him to kill Valdez. <br><br>Niemann testified that while he waited in the car, Boppre went to the door of Valdes's house and fired at least two shots from a .32-caliber pistol.<br><br>Niemann said that when he went into the house and saw Valdez on the kitchen floor, he felt sick and went back outside.<br><br>Boppre then returned to the car, reloaded his gun and went back into the house, Neimann said. After Boppre returned to the house, Neimann testified that he heard several more shots.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Now here’s where I start to think Boppre’s, at least partial, innocence begins to show itself. Wasmer and Neimann actually took authorities to the location of the gun that was allegedly used in the homicides. <br><br>My question, why did Boppre travel to New Mexico? To ditch a weapon, only to leave the shell casings at his household? Moreover, why would he go all the way to New Mexico to ditch a weapon? Or was there some type of drug deal that transpired between Boppre, Wasmer, and Niemann, that took place on their trip down to Arizona?<br><br>Wasmer's and Niemann's stories just don't add up; both Wasmer and Niemann said that Boppre had asked them to carry out the Valdez hit, but if Boppre "enjoyed" killing them, receiving $700 a head, then why would have he asked Wasmer and Niemann to carry out the hit? Secondly, if Niemann was in Boppre's car while the shootings transpired, why does the article make it sound as if Niemann learned of the shootings while on the trip down to Arizona? Something is fishy.<br><br>And one more thing, who gave Boppre the $700 he supposedly received for each hit, was that who they were going to see in Arizona, was some of this money used to buy all the drugs that were used on the trip?<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 10-19-88} <br>Authorities have recovered what they believe is the weapon used by a Scottsbluff man in a double homicide last month.<br><br>The .32-caliber, semi-automatic pistol was found last week by local law officials in a small canyon off a highway outside of Gallup, N.M., according to Scotts Bluff County Attorney Brian Silverman.<br><br>Officials have been searching for the gun used in the shooting deaths of Scottsbluff residents Richard Valdez, 25, and Sharon Condon, 19. Ms. Condon, who was pregnant, and Valdez were found shot to death in Valdez's rural Scottsbluff residence Sept. 20. Jeff Boppre, 25, of Scottsbluff, has been charged with first-degree murder.<br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Law-enforcement personnel were led to the gun's location by Alan Niemann and Kennard Wasmer, both of whom accompanied Boppre to Phoenix, Ariz., following the shootings</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END-->.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>For a few months it seems as though the case dropped of the local radar, but when the Boppre case went to trial an interesting testimony came out of Kennard Wasmer.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 3-8-89}<br>Jeff Boppre told a companion he enjoyed killing a Scottsbluff man and the man's pregnant girlfriend and wanted to "do it again," the companion testified in Boppre's double-murder trial Tuesday.<br><br>Boppre, 25, is accused of murdering Richard Valdez, 25, and his girlfriend, Sharon Condon, 19, early Sept. 19 at the rural Scottsbluff home Valdez rented.<br><br>Kenard Wasmer, 27, a former Scottsbluff resident, testified in Scotts Bluff County District Court about comments Boppre allegedly made when Wasmer, Boppre and Alan Niemann, 23, were traveling by car to Arizona Sept. 19.<br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>According to Wasmer, Boppre stated that on the night of the slayings he went to buy cocaine from Valdez, not to shoot anyone. However, Wasmer testified, Boppre said that when Valdez came to the door Boppre's arm "just popped up."</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br>"He said that after he pulled the trigger the first time he just couldn't quit," Wasmer said.<br><br>Wasmer said that when he asked Boppre how he felt about killing the couple, Boppre replied, "I like it. I want to do it again."<br><br>Wasmer testified Tuesday that once in Phoenix, he, Boppre, Niemann and three of Boppre's acquaintances there consumed an ounce of cocaine in less than two days. He said the group smoked and injected the cocaine night and day, doing little else.<br><br>"We just kept getting high, all day and all night," Wasmer said.<br><br>On the trip back to Scottsbluff a few days later, Wasmer said, Boppre cautioned his companions that "without a gun they can't prove anything."<br><br>"Jeff said that we were supposed to tell everybody that he sold that gun to Valdez a week earlier," Wasmer said. "He also said he hoped we had enough sense not to tell anybody anything about what happened."<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Now if Boppre had no intention to shoot Valdez, why would have Valdez told his father that someone was out to kill him, furthermore, stating that if someone did shoot him, he would write his name in blood before he died?<br><br>The trial was not a long a drawn out process, with deliberation consuming 9 hours. More interesting, though, was that this was the first time, at least on the part of the Omaha World Herald, that Boppre was cited for believing that he had been framed for the murders.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>{Omaha World Herald / 3-16-88} <br>Scotts Bluff County Attorney Brian Silverman said Wednesday that he would seek the death penalty for Jeff Boppre after a jury convicted Boppre of a double murder.<br><br>The jury deliberated about nine hours over two days before returning the verdict late Wednesday morning.<br><br>"There was no doubt in our minds that Jeff Boppre was guilty of those charges," Silverman said.<br><br>Boppre, 25, also was found guilty of two counts of robbery and two counts of using a firearm to commit a felony in connection with the Sept. 19 slayings at a rural Scottsbluff home.<br><br>Boppre was convicted of killing Richard Valdez, 25, and Valdez's pregnant girlfriend, Sharon Condon, 19. Authorities found the letters "JFF BOPE" written in grease and blood near Valdez's body.<br><br>During the seven-day trial, Boppre testified that he had gone to the Valdez house to buy drugs but that both Valdez and Miss Condon were alive when he left.<br><br><!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Boppre testified that he believed he was being framed for the crime.</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br>In his closing argument Tuesday, Silverman said Valdez had been a vital witness in the case because of the scrawled letters.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>I’m not sure how Whelan fits into the puzzle, with so many pieces to attempt to fit together. Hopefully I’ve given you a few corner pieces, and I will continue to see if I can find any other pertinent information, thanks for your work FourthBase. <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://p216.ezboard.com/brigorousintuition.showUserPublicProfile?gid=franklincaseadmin>FranklinCase Admin</A> at: 6/14/06 1:51 am<br></i>
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Re: Boppre, was he framed? Maybe just a third Accomplice?

Postby FourthBase » Wed Jun 14, 2006 4:59 am

Could be a third accomplice, that's a possibility.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>My question, why did Boppre travel to New Mexico? To ditch a weapon, only to leave the shell casings at his household? Moreover, why would he go all the way to New Mexico to ditch a weapon? Or was there some type of drug deal that transpired between Boppre, Wasmer, and Niemann, that took place on their trip down to Arizona?<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Good questions! As far as I know, Boppre and the other two were ultimately heading to Mexico. Not sure if there was a drug deal along the way. Somewhere before the border Boppre called his family to check up on them, and that's when he found out he was wanted for murder. So what did he do? He reportedly said to himself, "I better go back and clear this up" and drove all the way back to Nebraska. He must have been coked out of his mind to do something that stupid...or innocent and unknowing.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Wasmer's and Niemann's stories just don't add up; both Wasmer and Niemann said that Boppre had asked them to carry out the Valdez hit, but if Boppre "enjoyed" killing them, receiving $700 a head, then why would have he asked Wasmer and Niemann to carry out the hit? Secondly, if Niemann was in Boppre's car while the shootings transpired, why does the article make it sound as if Niemann learned of the shootings while on the trip down to Arizona? Something is fishy.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>There's also a guy named Rick Zogg to whom Boppre supposedly suggested a plan to kill Valdez for money and drugs. It's in the Supreme Court judgment. So supposedly Boppre was asking people left and right to take part. To the point where Valdez himself knew he was being hunted by somebody? And yet he still answered the door for Boppre?<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Now if Boppre had no intention to shoot Valdez, why would have Valdez told his father that someone was out to kill him, furthermore, stating that if someone did shoot him, he would write his name in blood before he died?<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>I have no idea, and this is the first I'd read of it.<br><br>From what I know, the victims were first shot point blank -- not sure how many victims shot point blank get the chance to scrawl anything. The scrawls must've taken place in the short time between Boppre re-loading, and Boppre himself must not have noticed the scrawls when he went back. Boppre claims, I think, that the real killers scrawled his name to frame him. I'd be interested to know if any fingerprints were taken from the scrawl.<br><br>Or perhaps Gilbert Valdez Sr. was wrong?<br>Interpolating dialogue based on the evidence?<br>Or maybe he was -- gulp -- lying? Part of the hit job?<br><br>One of Valdez's uncles is now on Boppre's side, FWIW.<br><br>I'm not seeing where the article suggests Niemann learned of the shootings while on the trip. I see here that he learned of them in the car as the murders took place, <!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>in between</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--> Boppre supposedly re-loading the gun:<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Niemann said that when he went into the house and saw Valdez on the kitchen floor, he felt sick and went back outside.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>What's odd is that one of Boppre's appeals was based on evidence that showed the victims' blood on Niemann's jeans, while Boppre's clothes were <!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>spotless</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END-->. So this testimony of Niemann admitting to being that close is startling.<br><br>Niemann's story is just not believable. Why would he just walk up, take a look, and then walk back? Seems like an embellishment designed to make his story more vivid.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>And one more thing, who gave Boppre the $700 he supposedly received for each hit, was that who they were going to see in Arizona, was some of this money used to buy all the drugs that were used on the trip?<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br><!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>Really</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--> good question, FCA. Supposedly, this is Whelan's theory: the DA was involved in a drug ring, and the murders were a hit job commissioned by bigger fish than Boppre and his friends.<br><br>I'm not sure where you got the "$700 a head" figure.<br>From here?<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>"Jeff said he got $700 for taking two peoples' lives. He said it wasn't good, but it wasn't bad." said Alan Niemann, 23.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>To me, that could be Niemann saying that Boppre simply stole $700 from Valdez and Condon (money they were given for coke?)...or it could be Niemann saying that Boppre was <!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>paid</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END--> $700 to kill them. The latter being far more interesting, of course.<br><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>I’m not sure how Whelan fits into the puzzle, with so many pieces to attempt to fit together. Hopefully I’ve given you a few corner pieces, and I will continue to see if I can find any other pertinent information, thanks for your work FourthBase.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--> <br><br>Thank <!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>you</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--> FCA!<br>Please let me know what else you can find. <p></p><i></i>
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Innocent Then and Now

Postby Sidney » Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:08 am

I have been following this case since 1991, have read the entire court proceedings (and the appeals), personally examined much of the evidence, interviewed the victims' families, and discussed the proceedings with four of the five principal witnesses who testified at Boppre's trial. The accepted "facts" of the case didn't hold up to scrutiny back in 1998 and do not hold up today. Among the most glaring examples of the many contradictions is the writing that victim Richard Valdez was alleged to have written on the floor of the small farm house where police found his body. Two world renowned forensic pathologists to whom I showed the Valdez autopsy report both told me, in no uncertain terms, that Valdez was dead of gunshot wounds before he collapsed onto the floor. And if he was dead before he fell to the floor he was certainly in no position to write his killer's name with a tube of mechanics grease. There were upwards of fifteen such inconsistencies in the evidence put forth at the trial, and a great many things that truly stretch the imagination. How the police found the murder weapon reads like a CSI script! But this evidence was presented nearly two decades ago, before Boppre had a competent attorney. Thanks to the detective work of the late Dennis Whelan, who devoted much of his later career to investigating this case, and the persistence of Laurence Whelan, Boppre's very able attorney, there is now overwhelming evidence that Boppre was framed. Alan Niemann, one of the two witnesses who testified against Boppre, actually recanted his testimony. A dozen or more other witnesses to various aspects of the case, who didn't appear at the trial, have also signed sworn affidavits that contradict the prosecutor's account of how the crime was committed. The "new" blood evidence which has triggered the latest appeal is merely icing on a cake which has been baking for twenty years. It's time to let Boppre out of prison and let him get on with his life.
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