After former KCK detective is arrested, questions about other cases remain
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (KCTV) - The arrest of disgraced KCKPD detective Roger Golubski on federal charges doesn’t wrap up the questions and allegations regarding corruption within the KCK Police Department. If anything, it opens the door to many more questions and many are looking for answers.
What about his old cases? What about the convictions that came with those cases? What about the prisoners who claim they were framed by Golubski and are imprisoned for crimes they say they didn’t commit?
One inmate said news of Golubski’s arrest was greeted with cheers by the inmates. Ahmon Mann said it was like a football game, with people gathered around the TV, cheering. Golubski is well known inside the prison—even those prisoners from out of state know of him.
KCTV5′s Investigative Team first introduced you to Mann several years ago. He’s currently in Lansing Prison, serving a life sentence for the murder of Robert Diaz in April of 2000. It’s a murder Mann swears he didn’t do.
Diaz was shot and killed late at night while inside his car at 40th and Minnie. The headlights were on and the doors open. No one called police for at least 10 minutes. An autopsy revealed seven gunshots. Mann was brought in for questioning. He admits he was a drug dealer and no angel, but he says he’s no killer. Mann said he barely knew the victim and didn’t have anything against him.
There was no physical evidence connecting Mann to the case; no fingerprints on the car, no blood on his clothing. Mann was confident he’d be cleared.
However, one eyewitness - a teenager named Loren Artis - pointed to Mann. The jury believed Artis and convicted Mann of first-degree murder.
Later, in 2011, that eyewitness sent a letter to Mann at the prison. In it, he told Mann that he was forced by detectives to point the finger to Mann. Artis wrote that he wanted to retract his statement because he felt guilty.
Mann thought that letter would lead to his release, but it did not.
“I’m just sitting in here patiently waiting for them to open the doors,” said Mann. “Just off of this man’s word, they think I committed this crime… and I didn’t.”
It was then that the pieces in his head clicked. He knew the detectives who worked his case: Roger Golubski and Terry Zeigler. KCTV5 reviewed video from the night of the murder. Both detectives were on the scene. Artis even includes their names in his witness statement. Zeigler later became the Police Chief in Kansas City, Kansas.
The notarized letter retracting Artis’ testimony never prompted a court hearing.
Time passed and, eventually, Golubski’s name comes up in connection with the Lamonte McIntyre case. McIntyre was wrongfully convicted in a case Golubski investigated and was later freed. Dozens of women stepped forward with allegations of sexual abuse and rape. When those allegations came up, we asked Zeigler about the allegations. He told us that he never learned anything about Golubski that he thought he needed to report.
We reached out to him again following Golubski’s arrest.
“It’s hard to believe and it leaves me with more questions than answers,” wrote Zeigler.
Mann finds it unbelievable that his partner was not aware of Golubski’s wrongdoing.
“Most definitely runs deeper,” said Mann. “Anybody would have to see that. You can’t do stuff like that over 20 years and it’s just you. Impossible. Literally, impossible.”
Mann questions what will happen next. Will any judge take another look at his case? His family is ecstatic about Golubski’s federal charges, crying and praying together as they learned the news.
As for Ahmon, he’s trying to be realistic about the justice system.
“For the whole 22 years, I’ve been fighting,” said Mann. “You get good news. You get bad news. You get good news, but you’re still here. It’s just been a long fight.”
He now has a strong team in his corner: the Midwest Innocence Project. It’s the same group that helped free Lamonte McIntyre and exposed serious allegations against Golubski.
The Midwest Innocence Project released this statement regarding Golubski’s arrest:
To learn more about the Midwest Innocence Project’s efforts click here.
For complete coverage regarding Roger Golubski, click here to view a dedicated section on our website.
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