Chief Bazemore made a public statement “this is not a random crime” before the investigation even began.
Someone started an unfounded rumor that Brad purchased bleach at 4AM and even the media latched onto it. It was untrue, yet some still believe it.
Chief Bazemore knew Brad never purchased bleach early on, but wouldn’t admit it during the press conference when asked specifically about it. She let the rumor persist.
Police began following Brad from the beginning, but refused to say they considered him a suspect. They said it was “for his safety”.
Diana Duncan said that Brad told her the dress was black, but during the trial Detective Young testified that Brad asked the Duncans what color the dress was in his presence and Diana answered “black”.
Detectives Young and Daniels both said that the dress smelled like Downy, but Daniels’ original notes never mentioned that. He post-added that information 6 months later because they needed to show the dress was washed by Brad.
Ivy McMillan (SBI) testified the dress had a food stain and deodorant streaks. It was never washed, clearly but prosecutors still ran with “the dress was washed” story.
Ivy McMillan testified that Detective Young told her not to test the grease-like stain found on the dress, but she did anyhow and it was not blood or bodily fluids but consistent with a food stain.
Detectives described the trunk as “showroom clean” but SBI testified there was normal dirt and debris in the trunk.
NO evidence was found that there was a body in that trunk – no hair, fibers, or DNA found.
No dirt or mud found in the car that matched dirt from Fielding Drive, and it was very muddy there, according to photos.
No mud visible on the floor via the store cameras when Brad entered the store store.
Prosecutors made the claim that Brad’s shoes from that morning were missing, but Detective Young testified that he never even asked him for the shoes.
The shoes were not even listed in the initial search warrant, not until 3 months later after Brad’s arrest.
Nancy’s Saucony shoes purchased in ’06 were never found.
Brad did tell Young that she switched out her shoes between the two newest pairs. Police tried to prove that Nancy returned that pair of shoes (the Sauconys) but they could not.
Police took two mismatched, different sized shoes (both right shoes) from a garage shelf and tried to suggest that Brad accidentally grabbed two left shoes and disposed of them. (fabricated evidence)
Prosecutors went along with the “two left missing shoes” ridiculous story.
No evidence of a struggle and no sign of a murder was found in the house and police said “that’s what’s so unique about this case”.
Detective Young had a story about Brad’s route to Harris Teeter for years before the trial and then changed his story in the middle of the trial as if it was no big deal. The original story was used to cast suspicion on Brad and it was false!
Brad purchased milk, green juice and Tide the morning of 7/12.
Jessica Adam told police the Coopers used All detergent and they believed her instead of Brad. False.
Jessica told police Nancy always ran with her keys and phone and Young actually put that in his affidavit. False.
Jessica and others told police Bella didn’t drink green juice. False.
Many friends told police Nancy never removed her necklace. False.
Hannah told police Nancy’s earrings were screw-back. False.
Jessica said there were decorative ducks missing from the foyer. False.
Detective Daniels testified that when Brad was told a body was found he said “black and red sports bra” then stopped. He later testified that Brad actually listed several items that Nancy may have been wearing that morning since he did not see her leave the house.
Police allege a call was “spoofed” when Nancy called Brad at 6:40 that morning. They never proved it.
Prosecutors claim that because Brad was capable of spoofing a phone call meant he likely did. No proof.
A spoofed call with the use of a computer and router can only be a max of 23 seconds long. The call from Nancy to Brad that morning was 32 seconds.
Prosecutors allege there was a missing router, but never proved it. Even IF all of the equipment capable of spoofing a call was in the house, the State must still prove that he did it!
Police ignored 16 witnesses who believed they saw Nancy that morning and deny that but testimony confirms that none of them were followed up with until 3 months later. Many were never contacted.
Four witnesses saw a strange van in the area around the time that Nancy went missing.
One of the witnesses believed they saw it turn around and follow a jogger he believed to be Nancy Cooper.
That witness contacted police while she was still missing, but they didn’t call him back until 3 months later.
Detective Daniels wrote “long sleeves” to describe what Brad was wearing that day instead of “short” and when shown a picture of Brad in short sleeves, he called it a typo, yet never corrected it in his report.
Bella Cooper told a neighbor that she saw her mother that morning in black shorts and a white tee-shirt.
In a motion to compel, the defense asked if Bella was questioned and never received a response.
Judge Gessner wouldn’t order prosecutors to turn over evidence about whether Bella Cooper was questioned about seeing Nancy that morning.
Judge Gessner wouldn’t even allow the defense to question police about Bella’s comments in front of the jury.
Judge Gessner allowed prosecutors to use “national security” as an excuse not to share discovery with defense – all of the methods, procedures and notes involved in the computer analysis that convicted Brad Cooper.
Judge Gessner wouldn’t allow the defense expert witnesses to testify about their findings on the computer – the evidence of tampering.
Judge Gessner wouldn’t allow a change of venue, even though this case had already been tried by the media.
Tire tracks at the scene were never cast and analyzed, though it’s clear it was not the Cooper vehicles.
Footprints right near the body were not cast and analyzed. (they were too small to be Brad’s)
FBI told Cary police to verify the Google “search” with Google themselves. They didn’t.
Cary police ignored a preservation letter from the defense attorneys specific to electronic evidence.
Detective Young erased all data from Nancy’s cell phone and destroyed the SIM card 10 days after the letter was received.
Cary police didn’t follow proper forensic protocols while seizing the computers from the Cooper home.
Brad’s computer was left on for 27 hours.
During that 27 hours, hundreds of files were changed, not all automatic updates.
All of the temporary internet files were altered.
Email archives were accessed.
Passwords were changed, including the administrative password.
The computer had 100% invalid timestamps the day of the “search” that convicted Brad Cooper.
The computer had 8% invalid timestamps over the life time of the computer.
Computer wasn’t hashed until a month later.
Poor chain of custody was followed and the computer was left in a lab for 2 weeks with several people having access to it.
Exculpatory evidence was revealed during the trial – FBI witness stated there was NO evidence of a spoofed call found on the computers. That was not given to the defense in discovery.
Prosecutors played part of the deposition for the jury that was supposed to be deleted, the ONE part that the judge ordered to be removed.
Autopsy evidence was mishandled – bugs from the body were left in a locker for 2 weeks instead of properly preserved so they had little left to test. A more accurate TOD could have been determined.
The blood alcohol level could have been more accurately determined if a more accurate test had been run. Again, it could have given a more accurate time of death.
A cigarette butt was found at the scene but not tested for DNA until 2 years later.
The “friends” had affidavit meetings/parties to make sure they had their stories straight. The friends sent the message – “you are either of the belief that Brad Did It, or you are no longer in the circle.”
Prosecutors suggested that Brad has a 32 digit password on his phone but he did not. Cisco locked the phone automatically after so much time passed and the password was required to unlock it.
Prosecutor made the claim in closing that there was a pink nail found in the garage. It was NOT a nail. It was a piece of plastic, probably from one of the kids toys.
Police tested Brad’s shoes for soil composition to compare it to samples from Fielding Drive – the shoes he wore while out searching for Nancy through trails. It was meaningless and a waste of tax dollars.
Prosecutors claim that Brad was one of 152 CCIE VoIP engineers. False – there are currently over a thousand specific to voice and there were several hundred in 2008.
Detective Daniels said Nancy’s bed “didn’t look slept in”. It did.
He never photographed his observation.
Then he claimed he sat in Nancy’s bed to “show what a slept in bed should look like”.
Then he claimed he photographed it.
Then he sent the bedding to SBI for fiber and body fluid evaluations and didn’t inform them that he contaminated the evidence by sitting on it.
Detective Young said it was fine for investigators to drink diet coke at an investigation scene “if they are thirsty”.
No booties were worn over shoes while police were in and out of the Cooper home and an alleged piece of hay was found by police in the home on July 16th. It was not photographed, it was not collected as evidence, or reported to the lead detective….it appeared in the officer’s notes two years later and the officer testified at the trial.
Police ignored an alternate suspect.
The alternate suspect lied during the first interview.
The alternate suspect knew Nancy’s jogging route.
The alternate suspect had a sexual encounter with the victim.
The alternate suspect is possibly the father of one of the Cooper children.
The alternate suspect was never investigated and ruled out.
SBI told Cary police to obtain DNA on the Cooper children. They didn’t.
Paternity of the child is still unknown.
Three witnesses from the party the night before Nancy’s disappearance said she had plans to jog the next morning.
Not one person said she had plans to paint.
Ricardo Lopez changed his initial story – he told police Nancy said she was going jogging the next morning and was very convincing. The next day he went back and changed his story because “he didn’t want to jeopardize the investigation”.
Police believed the paint story and disregarded the jog story because it came from Brad.
Nancy knew that Brad had plans to play tennis at 9:30 that morning and would not have made paint plans because she had to watch the children.
Jessica originally said she made the plans with Nancy to paint by phone, but it wasn’t on the phone records.
Then Jessica said she made the plans at Nancy’s home that Friday afternoon. Police didn’t question this discrepancy. Was she even there that day?
The State presented a lot of non-evidence to waste the court’s time. They presented a rug for example, that had no DNA on it and meant nothing to the case. This is one of many examples.
Prosecutors tried to make the case that Brad straightened the garage so he could get a car in there the night of the murder. Brad straightened the garage the prior week and there is no evidence a car was ever in that garage. Even Nancy told Jessica she still couldn’t get her car in there the Tuesday before she disappeared.
Hannah sent an email to friends asking for pictures only with Nancy wearing the necklace and police were copied on it.
The mayor and town manager praise the police for a job well done in the handling of the investigation.
The mayor and town council still aren’t pushing for an investigation into the clear mishandling of the Cooper case, even though public mistrust has resulted.
Part way through the defense case, the jury sent a note to the judge stating “we want our lives back”. We want this to be over”.
The jury foreman, after the trial said the computer evidence was the main deciding factor in the guilty verdict. This was the only evidence the defense was not permitted to defend against and the judge and prosecutors made sure it never happened.