Free Michael Clark - an innocent man serving LWOP

This chronology starts with the murder of Marty Grisham (victim) on November 1, 1994 and proceeds with all the events that occurred in this case up until the trial, wrongful conviction of Michael Clark, sentence of LWOP and the appeal to the Colorado Court of Appeals.

  • November 1, 1994- Marty Grisham is shot to death in his home in Boulder Colorado. He answered his door to a loud knock. He had been in the middle of dinner with his girlfriend (a married woman pending a divorce) named Barbara Burger. She did not see what happened, but said before Marty opened the door he turned his head around to her as though he recognized who was at the door..

  • November 1994- A woman who lived in Marty Grisham’s apartment building goes to the police to report sighting a scary man running from the building who “gave her the chills” around the time of the murder. Police make a sketch, and have her look at a line up. She says she can’t identify the person, but that it is “definitely not Michael Clark because she would remember his ears.”

  • November 1994-Marty Grisham’s lawyer reports to police that there was a life insurance policy on Marty that expired at midnight on November 1st. He found the date of his murder “troubling.” The life insurance policy was not brought up at trial, nor was the fact that his two children Kristen & Loren) were beneficiaries. 

  • November 1994- A convenience store clerk (Vanderboss) reports seeing a car leaving the scene of the crime. This car does not fit the description of Mike’s car. Vanderboss later died, and was unable to testify to this fact.

  • November 3, 1994- Michael Clark is brought in for an involuntary and un-mirandized interrogation as to his involvement in the murder. Mike maintains his innocence, and tells police that he was not involved in any way in this murder.

  • November 5, 1994- Walter Stackhouse (a “jailhouse snitch”) is interviewed by Detective Trujillo where he claims that when asked about the murder Mike nodded his head in consent. Stackhouse is offered work release in exchange for his story. He needed work release to save a business that was “going under.” Detective Trujillo writes in his notes that Stackhouse is untrustworthy, needs a polygraph, and goes as far as to call him a “psychopath.” Stackhouse was a jailhouse snitch, cocaine addict, probation violator, and six-time felon on temporary release from California state prison. Stackhouse’s prior crimes included false information to a police officer, fraud, forgery, and false reporting. Stackhouse’s rap sheet included several crimes involving fraud and lying to police and was so long it was difficult to keep track of his previous convictions. He admitted to diluting his urine while on probation to pass urine tests. 

  • 1995- Deon Moore is offered a deal to testify against Michael Clark. Even so, there is just not enough evidence (in fact, no evidence) to tie Mike to the crime scene, so the case goes cold.

  • October 1995- There was not evidence to tie Mike to the crime, so the case goes cold 

  • August 2001- Mike moves to Oregon with his then girlfriend Amy Taylor.

  • August 2003- Michael Clark and Amy Taylor are married. He manages an auto shop, buys a house, and goes on to have 3 children.

  • December 2009- Detective Heidel vows to solve cold cases in Boulder, and re-opens the Marty Grisham case. There is no new evidence since 1994, but he decides to proceed with a circumstantial case against Michael Clark.

  • June 2010-Michael Clark moves back to Colorado with his family to be closer to his parents, and Amy’s family.

  • April 15, 2011- Michael Clark is interrogated at his place of work under false pretenses of looking for a friend of his (Deon Moore) for illegal gun trafficking. This is an un-mirandized interview that they claim is not recorded, even though it is being recorded. Mike continues to maintain his innocence.

  • January 11, 2012- The D.A. charges Michael Clark with the murder of Marty Grisham. He is arrested as he drops his kids off at daycare where they watch him get handcuffed and taken away, while they are left alone in the running car to be retrieved by the daycare provider.

  • February 2012- Michael Clark is released from the Boulder jail on $100,000 bail while awaiting his trial. He goes back to his family and his work for 9 months. 

  • October 2012- Prosecution offered Mike a plea because they had a purely circumstantial case, with no evidence tying Mike to the crime scene (even they thought obtaining a conviction was a long shot). Mike turned down the plea because he refused to admit guilt to a crime he didn't commit and choose to go to trial.

  • October 22, 2012- The day before his son’s 4th birthday, Michael Clark is convicted of first degree murder in a purely circumstantial case and sentenced to LWOP.

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