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January 5, 2013

Minnesota Guardian Ad Litem program used for criminal extortion

Embattled police department and public officials involved in blackmail and defamation scheme?

by Timothy Charles Holmseth

Is an embattled prosecutor in Northern Minnesota using a court appointed guardian ad litem to achieve improper legal access to a man’s parental rights; for purposes of extortion and witness tampering?


Here’s why.

When public officials get caught breaking the law, their instincts to escape responsibility for their behavior are no different than your average bum or addict on the street.

In January of 2013 East Grand Forks City Attorney Ronald Galstad found his feet stuck firmly in cement when he told Honorable Tamara Yon during open court that he was in communications with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) regarding a forensic search he wanted done on a hard-drive that police had seized from Timothy Charles Holmseth.

As it turned out – Galstad was not working with the BCA.

Along with rogue members of the 9th Minnesota District’s legal community, Galstad was in the process of setting Holmseth up - using a Pine-to-Prairie Drug Task Force raid. The police had conned a district judge into believing they needed to seize Holmseth’s property so he could not destroy evidence; obtained a warrant; and stored the property in BCA containers. 

Nothing illegal was found during the raid because Holmseth was not committing any crimes in the first place. The real objective of the search and seizure was to obtain Holmseth’s hard-drive.

The best laid plans of mice and men.

In December of 2013 the BCA disavowed Galstad, and stated they had nothing to do with him or the BCA evidence stickers that had been used. They also made it clear they had no agent working on the Pine-to-Prairie Drug Task Force. They had not been involved in Galstad’s shenanigans at all.

It only gets worse.

While Pinocchio was telling Judge Yon how the BCA was the agency he was working with to forensically search Holmseth’s hard-drive, he secretly arranged for a deputy from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) to search the hard-drive using software that leaves no trace of its activity.

The activities of the officers indicate they may have made an illegal copy of the hard-drive and/or had other illegal plans.

When the criminal activity was exposed, the EGFPD and PCSO both claimed they had not kept a chain of evidence form on the hard-drive, which they had been moving from location to location for over three months.

How did all this incriminating information get out?

It came out because Holmseth began filing formal complaints, making document requests to the EGFPD, and publishing articles about it on the Web. The evidence Holmseth was seeking was obtainable, but only if he could endure the soft-kill terror tactics of the State until the Police Department finally turned over the records.

It wasn’t easy - Holmseth was prying on the closet door that led to all the EGFPD's skeletons. The Department was doing everything possible to stall production of documents because Holmseth is an independent publisher that already had national attention on him due to journalistic work he did on a federal kidnapping.

In 2009, Holmseth conducted hundreds of hours of interviews with individuals involved in the national profile kidnapping of HaLeigh Ann-Marie Cummings. During the interviews he also learned highly volatile information regarding the mysterious disappearance and murder of Caylee Marie Anthony.

It was in 2009 the local police first heard Holmseth’s name; and it wasn’t because he was committing any crimes.

Days after Holmseth obtained highly volatile information about a kidnapping, the group that staged the child’s abduction made contact with the mother of Holmseth’s son, Rhonda Callahan, North Dakota. Callahan did not know any of the members of the group; but the relationship instantly budded.

The paper trail is there to tell the story.

The phones at EGFPD and Polk County Social Services (PCSS) lit up like a Christmas tree. Callahan and members of the group began calling and emailing the authorities with claims that Holmseth had a mental problem and abused his kids.

If this had been teenagers making crank phone calls to anonymous people to ask if their refrigerator was running it might have been funny. But these were adult professionals calling law enforcement and social services to discredit a journalist that had just learned the truth about a kidnapping.

Holmseth – an award-winning newspaper reporter; a single parent that had been awarded sole physical custody of his four year-old daughter; a respected person by any standard; was now under full siege by operatives of a human trafficking operation based out of Florida.

Holmseth soon began to receive threats and phone calls that warned the State was going to take his children away if he didn’t shut his mouth. The initial stage of the plan failed when, in October of 2009, a play therapist that Callahan tried to enlist to work with Holmseth’s son, told PCSS the child loved his dad; was not afraid of his dad; and enjoyed going to his dad’s home. The therapist said the child did not present with any of the symptoms reported by Callahan at intake.

In early 2011 Holmseth published a book about the missing child HaLeigh Cummings. Within days, the false accusations of neglect and abuse were back in full force. This time the false allegations were being made in the Roseau Family Court.

In late 2011 Matthew Petrovich, guardian ad litem, 9th Minnesota Judicial District, was assigned to case number 60-FA-13-468.

The case is now set to change the public’s understanding regarding children caught in the middle of custody disputes, and how valuable they are to government officials – for use in blackmail and extortion schemes.

The murky, abstract, and often subjective nature of high conflict child custody cases, are often quagmires of lies and half-truths. The standard of proof in custody cases surrounds the ‘best interest of the child’ concept, which is rife for manipulation and has made Family Courts around the country a liar’s paradise.

But case number 60-FA-13-468 has out-lived the liars, and no longer provides the pathological players the little abstract paradise they once enjoyed. The passing of time is betraying the sins of the government officials, that all too often, skate along on some kind of assumed integrity that does not really exist.

HOLMSETH VS. CALLAHAN has become the Rosetta stone to understanding how criminal elements successfully exploit the Family Court to extort their adversary.

HOLMSETH VS. CALLAHAN has become a blueprint that shows how child exploitation, disguised as child protection, is diabolically implemented to cover up and conceal organized criminal activity.

That is what Matthew Petrovich did when he used his position as a guardian ad litem to come to the aid of Galstad and his ilk.

On December 29, 2013 Holmseth reported on his website, Write Into Action, that Petrovich used his position as GAL on a Family Case file to apply extortion against him (Holmseth) in violation of Title 18, U.S.C., Section 241 - Conspiracy Against Rights.

The published article read in part:

In a scathing report to the Court, Petrovich told the Judge that Holmseth claims to be a victim of harassment and stalking. He dismissed Holmseth’s claims, noting nobody has ever been charged with any crime based upon Holmseth’s allegations. “Mr. Holmseth attributes that, in part, to the corruption of the East Grand Forks Police Department and City Attorney Ron Galstad” Petrovich said.

“My great concern is that the degree of paranoia that Mr. Holmseth views everything in his life will have a very detrimental effect on [his son], Petrovich said.

Petrovich told the Court in his written report that he believed Holmseth’s “paranoia” posed a threat to his son. He then recommended Holmseth see his child under supervision. Petrovich subsequently complained in open court that Holmseth had filed complaints against everybody except “Kevin Bacon”.

No evidence was presented to the court that would connect Holmseth’s son to his work as a journalist. Petrovich’s assertion that Holmseth shares sensitive information with his son was presented as something Petrovich ‘thinks’ that Holmseth ‘must’ do.

Holmseth’s ‘violation’ was filing complaints. By any other definition this activity would be called kidnapping.

However – things were occurring in the background regarding Holmseth, the East Grand Forks Police Department, and Galstad that would soon bring a wealth of hidden events and secret realities into sudden view.

When all the pieces of the puzzle are put together a very disturbing picture emerges. 

Petrovich boldly asserted to the Court that Holmseth’s use of the grievance process is direct evidence of Holmseth's diminished mental state. This shows how Petrovich views the proper ‘process’ and ‘procedure’ being followed by Holmseth, with a contempt so strong, that he applied an un-diagnosed personality disorder to label Holmseth because of it.

But Petrovich’s stance against Holmseth did not begin during a court hearing on October 9, 2013. It existed from the moment he was assigned to the case.

Honorable Donna Dixon appointed Petrovich in 2011 due to (a second round of) very serious child abuse allegations made against Holmseth by Callahan. The Judge also said she wanted to see medical files, which recorded the facts and circumstances surrounding a violent episode of hit-and-run; a topic being strategically avoided by Callahan and her lawyer.

Petrovich too, completely avoided the hit-and-run issue.

However - medical records show the child was extremely traumatized after he witnessed his mother deliberately slam her car into his father at a school picnic. Medical records illuminate the true effect it had on the child because he was in the car; saw the impact; heard the thud. Although the child’s mother quickly sped away from the scene, she was not charged with any crime whatsoever by the EGFPD or PCSO.

It was okay to hit 'Timothy Holmseth' with a car and leave the scene.

Within two months, Callahan would have a harassment order against Holmseth, and would launch a full gamut of new neglect and abuse accusations that would result in an investigation by Grand Forks County Child Protection Services.  Holmseth, again, was cleared by CPS.

However - Petrovich - now appointed to the case - appeared to have a very specific agenda he was pursuing. He was fine with Callahan’s explanation that she ‘moved’ Holmseth ‘out of the way’ using her car.

Petrovich was not influenced by the findings of CPS and stated that just because they didn’t find anything, didn’t mean something didn’t happen.

But the truth has tale to tell.

Petrovich spoke with the play therapist that told CPS in 2009 the child totally loves and enjoys being with his dad. The therapist reported to Petrovich that the child was exhibiting dangerous levels of ‘alienation’ during more recent sessions. She advised Petrovich that while the child was with Callahan, he was not in a secure environment to develop a relationship with his father. 

Petrovich’s corruption was so utterly complete that he did not even report to the Court that he’d spoken with the play therapist - much less have reported the problems the therapist identified.

After meeting with Holmseth only one time, Petrovich recommended Holmseth submit to a Parental Capacity test with a psychologist. Holmseth passed the test with flying colors. He had taken the same battery of tests in 2008 with the same results.

Holmseth’s parenting-time was reinstated – but - a phantom investigation – continued.

Petrovich insisted the six year-old child have a cell phone when he was with his father. The child believed he was supposed to spy on his dad and would make reports to Petrovich.

Petrovich made reports to Child Protective Services against Holmseth that were immediately screened out. He recommended on multiple occasions that Holmseth’s parenting-time be suspended – a request that was consistently denied by the Judge. 

Every indication showed Petrovich was attempting to manufacture a (bogus) child abuse/neglect case against Holmseth, and he repeatedly alluded to Holmseth’s mental health. Petrovich’s actions showed he was very dedicated to his objective of making the Court believe Holmseth was imagining things.

There is a very good reason for that. Holmseth was putting the jig-saw puzzle together regarding the EGFPD and PCSO and Petrovich knew it.

Petrovich needed to convince the Court that Holmseth was ‘delusional’ and ‘paranoid’ and not to be believed.

Between November of 2011 and May of 2012, Petrovich harassed and harangued Holmseth with behaviors no different than a high school bully that singles out some unlucky kid for constant torment.

But the harassment suddenly accelerated and intensified in the summer of 2013. 

Holmseth began receiving stern warning from Petrovich. The heavy-handed communications began when Holmseth started making document requests to the East Grand Forks Chief of Police. Holmseth was requesting chain of custody information regarding the whereabouts of his computer and hard-drive during the time it had been in police custody.

“I've seen the updated posts on your website and I notice that you will respond to emails at all hours of the day, so you are clearly spending a lot of time on your computer. Please consider that if you are spending anywhere near as much time sitting at your computer as claimed, it is sending [your son] a pretty direct message about what is important to you,” Petrovich said.

Petrovich commonly cynically refers to Holmseth’s diligence, document requests, work ethic, and publishing about law enforcement as his “computer”. The only connection between Holmseth’s legal issues and his son are fictitious scenarios fabricated by Petrovich.

On January 1, 2013 Holmseth emailed a letter to Polk County Sheriff Barb Erdman. He advised Erdman he possessed irrefutable evidence that proves law enforcement and select officials tampered with evidence while they had possession of his computer and hard-drive. He advised Erdman that if she has an open investigation file he will provide her the evidence; otherwise he will give it to the District Judge and FBI.  

Petrovich was copied on Holmseth’s letter to Sheriff Erdman and he immediately responded to Holmseth:

“You are also doing exactly what Ron Galstad argued about on Monday: piggybacking claims and arguments of your choosing into files that have nothing to do with the matter you are presenting. This has nothing to do with your family file. It doesn't even have anything to do with your criminal file. If they had used something found on your hard drive as evidence against you, you could have argued its admissibility based on a chain of custody issue, but that was never the case.”

Petrovich himself had used the Family Court forum to label Holmseth as paranoid and take an adverse action against him based upon the false label. However - when evidence started pouring in from sources like the BCA and sheriff's reports that showed misconduct and criminal activity had actually been taking place on the part of law enforcement, which proved Holmseth is not paranoid, Petrovich contacted Holmseth and chastised him, saying it is not part of the family case file.

Petrovich is a person that appears to have no meanignful relationship with the law, truth, or morals.

A careful look at the aforementioned quote by Petrovich places his lawless contempt for ‘process’ and ‘procedure’ and 'truth' on display.

Petrovich said, “If they had used something found on your hard drive as evidence against you, you could have argued its admissibility based on a chain of custody issue, but that was never the case”. 

“Had the search of your hard drive been improper and they used the contents of the drive as evidence against you, you could have argued about the admissibility of it. But that is a moot point since that never happened,” Petrovich said.

Petrovich said an improper search of the hard-drive is a “moot point”. He blatantly declares he believes that illegal activity by government officials is okay. His assessment is akin to saying a bank robber didn’t do anything wrong, because after he pointed his gun at the teller and demanded all the money; the bank vault was under control of a time-lock; so the robber fled without shooting anybody.

Petrovich’s supervisor, Traci Kapella, attended a court hearing to monitor Petrovich after Holmseth alerted the Minnesota Attorney General to the rampant violations occurring. Kapella states she is still reviewing the large amount documentation she received from Holmseth.

Many fear the pattern and practice of child exploitation by corrupt government officials that hold children ransom through the Family Court could become an epidemic in the United States.

The fact that Holmseth was interviewed by the Minneapolis FBI and turned over evidence about an international human trafficking operation is also causing serious concerns about the activities of Petrovich.

Through Holmseth's probing and investigation, it was learned that Petrovich was not reporting all of his telephonic contact to the Judge in his reports. In fact, Petrovich was discussing Holmseth with out-of-state individuals from the South – ‘off the record’. Records show Petrovich shares the same out of state contacts as Galstad and Lt. Rodney Hajicek.

The official position of the Minnesota Guardian Ad Litem program is not yet clear.

However – one thing is certainly clear.

Petrovich is not concerned the police illegally searched Holmseth’s hard-drive without a warrant. He is not concerned the police had Holmseth’s hard-drive for three and a half months and kept no chain of evidence documentation. He is not concerned the police used BCA labels to hold items seized from Holmseth, and the BCA later stated they knew nothing about it and had no involvement whatsoever. He is not concerned Ronald Galstad told the Judge he was communicating with the BCA about needing another search warrant – another fallacy disavowed by the BCA. He is not concerned that the hard-drive, which is evidence in several cases; was returned inoperable.

Petrovich is concerned that Holmseth is talking about it. Petrovich believes Holmseth has a mental problem for bringing it up.

Perhaps the most profound statement describing Petrovich’s involvement in HOLMSETH VS. CALLAHAN was made by the child’s play therapist during a meeting with another therapist.  She said that never in her career had she seen a case where the guardian ad litem was so deeply involved with the affairs of a family, where the child is “safe in both homes”.

This is a developing story.