("Quid coniuratio est?")
"Give us the coroner, and we'll give you the city."
-- Intelligence community axiom
JUSTICE: ARKANSAS STYLE
By Karen Bixman
For the People News Reporter, November 14, 1994
In Bill Clinton's Arkansas, justice was a hard commodity to find; just ask Linda Ives.
After seven years this Benton, Ark. woman is still waiting for the killers of her son Kevin to be brought to justice.
Ives is featured on the videotape, The Clinton Chronicles, where she poses a question to the former governor.
"I would like an answer from Bill Clinton," asks Ives, "as to why the main conspirators, as far as I am concerned, in the murder of my son and the cover-up in the murder of my son, have been elevated in status by having cushy jobs created for them."
The nightmare began for Linda Ives on the evening of August 22, 1987. Kevin Ives left his house to spend the night at the home of his friend Don Henry. Kevin, 17, and 16-year-old Don, were scheduled to begin vocational training at Bryant High School where they soon would begin their senior year.
At about 12:30 a.m., now Sunday the 23rd, equipped with a flashlight and a .22 caliber rifle, the pair left Henry's house to go deer spotlighting but never returned home.
At 4:30 a.m. a Union Pacific freight train, bearing three engines and seventy-five cars was travelling northbound from Shreveport, La. to North Little Rock, Ark.
Near the state Highway 111 crossing west of Alexander in Saline County, engineer James Schroyer saw what appeared to be the bodies of two men lying on the tracks.
Schroyer placed the train on emergency which activated whistles and bells; but neither the warning sounds nor the grinding of metal wheels against the tracks generated movement from the two figures.
Travelling at a speed of 50 miles per hour, Schroyer was unable to stop the freight before it reached the victims on the tracks.
The bodies of Kevin Ives and Don Henry had been lying within and parallel to the train rails; their legs over the rails.
Saline County Sheriff James Steed stated that according to state Medical Examiner Fahmey Malek, the boys were alive prior to being run over by the train.
There was no indication the deaths might have been suicide, but "you could speculate ten thousand things," said Steed.
Friends and family were shocked by the deaths.
Jody Washam, a next door neighbor of Ives and friend of both the boys said he had been out on the tracks at night with friends and it was not hard to know a train was coming long before it arrived.
He said that neither boy would have intentionally wanted to be hit by a train, nor would they have been using drugs.
Three weeks later, [State Medical Examiner] Fahmey Malek ruled the deaths as accidental, stating that the boys were in a marijuana induced sleep and death occurred as a result of being hit by the train.
Outraged by the verdict, the parents of Ives and Henry sought help from law enforcement agencies to pursue the case.
They were met with resistance at every level.
"We disagreed with the ruling," says Linda Ives. "At that point we had a lot of questions and no answers, and the facts didn't add up to what he (Malek) was telling us. We decided to get a second opinion and met with resistance on all fronts: with our local law enforcement and with the state crime lab; with everyone we turned to. We obtained court orders requesting samples of everything that the state crime lab had. Fahmey Malek resisted court orders; he refused to obey them."
Due in part to the persistent efforts of Ives, a special prosecutor's hearing was called in February of 1988 which resulted in the impaneling of a sixteen member Saline County grand jury on April 27.
The boys' bodies were exhumed and another autopsy was performed by Atlanta pathologist Dr. Joseph Burton.
A preliminary report, issued in September, stated the boys had been murdered. Kevin Ives had been beaten in the head with a rifle butt, his skull crushed, and Don Henry had been stabbed in the back.
In December of 1988, the Saline County Grand Jury issued its final report. Although Malek refused to give permission allowing his testimony to be included in the report, transcripts were leaked to the press. They clearly showed that Malek had changed his testimony before the grand jury in regards to the autopsies between his May 3 and November 18 appearance.
Dr. Burton's findings were in direct conflict with Malek's. The following week the State Medical Examiner's Commission exonerated Malek of any wrong doing and even recommended that he receive a raise.
This was not the first time that Malek had come under fire, nor would it be the last.
In July of 1988, he ruled that Peter Robinson, 76, had died in an Arkansas nursing home of natural causes: pneumonia and cardiovascular disease.
Pulaski County Coroner Steve Nawojczyk, in an unprecedented move, convened a coroner's jury which ruled that Robinson had been beaten to death. Jimmy Webb, 49, a resident of the same nursing home, was later charged with manslaughter and referred to the custody of the state hospital.
Appointed by Bill Clinton in 1979, Malek served twelve years as state medical examiner, and over a five year period he was challenged in court over seventeen times by other pathologists.
Throughout his tenure as medical examiner, Malek continued to reap the benefit of Governor Bill Clinton's support.
Clinton claimed that Malek was "stressed out" and recommended that Malek receive a raise and more assistants be appointed to his staff.
A group of families who felt victimized by Malek's rulings formed an organization called VOMIT (Victims Of Malek's Incredible Testimony).
They picketed Malek's public appearances and attempted to put pressure on Governor Clinton in an effort to have Malek removed from office; yet the governor continued to turn a deaf ear to the complaints.
The growing controversy led speculation as to why Governor Clinton continued to support Malek's decisions.
[Apparent cover up by Malek of an incident involving Clinton's mother, who worked as a nurse/anesthetist at a hospital in Hot Springs is described.]
The uproar surrounding Malek's incompetence finally came to a head when Malek ruled the death of James Milam, who had been decapitated, as dying from natural causes.
As to the investigation into the deaths of Kevin Ives and Don Henry, the case has continued to merit attention.
Former Saline County police officer John Brown, who until recently was a part of the investigation, has stated that drugs were being transported by plane as well as train into the area where the boys were found.
Brown alleges that the boys witnessed a drug drop and were killed to protect the identity of those involved.
Brown also alleges that SIX OTHER PEOPLE HAVING DIRECT KNOWLEDGE INTO THE DEATHS HAVE BEEN MURDERED [my emphasis, BFR].
In the meantime, Linda Ives still waits for the truth.
Will the participants in the death of her son and in the subsequent cover-up be brought to justice?
Let's hope so.
I encourage distribution of "Conspiracy Nation."
"Justice" = "Just us" = "History is written by the assassins."