From the Cosmo Archives: How a Psychic Helped Resolve a Grotesque and Mysterious Homicide

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The evolution of police procedures, together with refined DNA-testing that’s now commonplace, has not been restricted to quantifiable knowledge and analysis. As veteran journalist and crime reporter Susan Edmiston found on this compellingly reported function, police have utilized the varied skills of psychics for years. From the November 1991 situation of Cosmopolitan, see how real-life psychic Annette Martin used her skills to assist a retiring California detective remedy a chilly case that had haunted him for many years. —Alex Belth, Hearst historian

Annette Martin takes three deep breaths and enters a trance. Not like the stereotypical psychic, she’s not bizarre, moody, or melodramatic. A sunny blonde from San Jose, California, with a down-to-earth practicality, Martin has completed psychic consulting for the final fifteen years. Right this moment, carrying a snowflake-patterned sweater and black pants for heat, she is in Billings, Montana, sitting within the workplace of Capt. Keith Wolverton, fifty-two, of the Cascade County Sheriff’s Division. A slim, rangy man with a fine-boned nostril and a beard flecked with pink, Captain Wolverton is about to retire, however earlier than he does, he needs to crack his final unsolved thriller, the Cottonwood Case, a thirty-five-year-old lover’s-lane homicide named for the tree the place Patti Kalitzke, sixteen, and Lloyd Duane Bogle, eighteen, have been shot.

Wolverton has labored with psychics on dozens of instances earlier than and, even though psychically-generated info is inadmissible in courtroom, he’s a part of a rising development on the a part of police departments to take psychics significantly. “What the psychic does,” says psychologist Jeffrey Blum, writer of Dwelling With Spirit in a Materials World, “is put you in contact along with your inside voice.” Though Blum believes that some psychics have particular powers that allow them to know issues we can not account for in rational methods, his primary perception is that “any significant system, any story, any follow that results in an awakening of recent perceptions and new energies is supremely precious. If you wish to hear your inside voice, you have to discover a option to throw off the restraints of your historical past and the constraints of your ego.”

“You’ve gotten some proof?” Martin asks Wolverton.

Wolverton fingers her a worn blue coat with blood stains so previous they’ve turned a rusty yellow, and locations a battered brown pockets and a few images on his desk. “Whew,” she says, stroking the coat, “the vitality may be very robust. Patricia was her actual title?”

The earlier August, a former Montanan named Robert Coxe* was arrested for raping and killing a girl in San Diego and is awaiting trial for that crime. The police division there requested Montana’s Cascade nation police for a background verify. And because the police traced his actions over time, they positioned Coxe within the space on the time of the Cottonwood Case. Wolverton is scheduled to query Coxe the next week in San Diego to see if he can tie him to the Cottonwood case, however earlier than he does, he needs to search out out if Martin can provide him the form of “inside info” he wants.

Martin begins to talk: “These two children have been very a lot in love. There’s loads of warmth coming off her. She feels very responsible. Very unhappy. It shouldn’t have occurred. And he or she doesn’t perceive why. You’ve gotten an image of their automotive? I’m getting a sort of darkish shade. Darkish inexperienced or darkish blue.”

Wolverton: “A ’52 Dodge.”

Martin, eyes closed, lapses into silence. “I’m within the automotive,” she says. “They’re each within the automotive. They’re speaking … one thing about his father … He doesn’t appear to be glad in regards to the two of them seeing each other. She’s crying. He’s holding her. She feels so poor. Her costume appears like cotton, light-colored on high. In summer time, she goes round barefoot so much. She is a free spirit, a toddler who’s open to journey, getting herself concerned in conditions she is extraordinarily naïve about. They’re driving down a highway now. That they had stopped, however they’re now transferring. He’s sort of offended, upset, disturbed along with her. What’s his title?”

Wolverton: “Duane. Lloyd Duane. What are you feeling?”

Martin: “Anxiousness—from him, from her. They’re wanting over one thing, perhaps a valley. It appears like daylight nonetheless … getting darkish.”

Martin takes the pockets into her fingers. She holds the image. “Oh, there’s somebody coming. The phrase that got here to me instantly was ‘drifter.’”

“Are you able to see him?”

“Sure. Oh, she so scared. She noticed his shadow, turned her head. Over on the fitting aspect there are these bushes. She noticed one thing transfer. They didn’t hear something, however there’s a automotive on the opposite aspect. He’s … darkish … hair. [Stroking chin] I’m getting some sort of facial hair. Scruffy-looking.”

Martin takes a pencil and begins to sketch. “The face appears to be like sort of lengthy, cheekbones are excessive, he hasn’t shaved for some time. A mouth straight throughout, skinny lips, with a large space between lips and the nostril.”

“Did he come out of the automotive? Are you able to draw the situation?”

“What I noticed was this.” She continues to sketch. “A bit of ravine and their automotive, after which there are the bushes the place they’re parked.” She pauses. “He has an odor about him. He has some sort of fungus on his toes. He feels unclean, and he feels … determined … There’s some sort of hat. [She strokes her head.] There are some straps, nearly just like the hats pilots used to put on …He’s been round this space for some time.”

“What’s he doing?”

“He’s pulling on the door deal with. She’s screaming. The boy doesn’t know what do to. He’s attempting to lock the doorways. He’s holding her. He’s attempting to get the automotive began. There’s one thing mistaken with the automotive. The automotive gained’t begin. Someway or different, the drifter will get the door open. I’m seeing him pulling her out of the automotive; I’m seeing him knock her down. He’s hitting the boy, beating on him. Was the pockets discovered away from the boy’s physique? It feels prefer it was flung away. He’s searching for one thing within the automotive. He’s attempting their fingers.”

Wolverton: “How is he tying their fingers when he’s all by himself?”

“He’s very robust. They’re each out chilly. He knocked them out very onerous. I see her mendacity over right here, and the boy is farther over there.”

“The suspect has a motive at this level?”

“He feels trapped, sort of loopy. Like he’s searching for one thing—it wasn’t notably them. He’s discovered them; he’s going to avenge his anger, his nervousness, his craziness. He doesn’t know why he’s doing it. He’s killed earlier than. He’s seeing another person. He might have seen them, however he doesn’t know them. He’s tying the boy. He’s unconscious. She’s waking up. She’s so scared.” Martin’s voice breaks, and she or he begins to cry.

Wolverton speaks soothingly. “See it as if you happen to have been watching it on TV,” he says.

“He’s moved her. There’s a tree. He drags her by the toes. He sees a special particular person in her. He’s shouting and screaming profanities and desires to mutilate her and rape her and get her out of his thoughts ceaselessly. Erase her.”

“Does he have a weapon?”

“Sure. It appears to be like black, brown on the deal with.”

“Does he strike her?”

Martin makes a bludgeoning motion. “She’s awake and she or he’s telling him, ‘I haven’t damage you. What have I completed to you? Please don’t kill me.’

“I see him dashing as much as her like an animal and hanging her head on the tree and raping her, clawing into her again and desirous to destroy her. The goal was the feminine, and she or he’s so confused and she or he is aware of she’s not speculated to be on the market. [Martin’s face is red, and a tear rolls down the side of her face to her chin.] ‘Daddy goes to be so upset.’”

Wolverton: “Annette, take a deep breath. Chill out. Don’t maintain on to the ache. Let it go. Simply watch it as if you happen to’re watching a film. What’s occurring now? You’re doing very properly.”

Nonetheless sniffling, Martin cradles the coat. “He’s holding her … fastidiously, so fastidiously. He lays her down, leaves her. ‘Jane, Jane, Jane. I’m sorry, Jane …’”

“Who’re we listening to?”

“He thinks she’s Jane. ‘I informed you to not do it. I informed you to not do it. I informed you, Jane … Jane …’ He’s wiping her face. He picks her up. He’s going to take her someplace. He’s carrying her … ‘I informed you. It’s throughout with. It’s throughout with … ’”

Martin continues her reenactment of the crime, with the killer capturing Duane and Patti, placing the woman’s physique in his automotive, driving north, and dumping her out. She describes the assassin: “He goes from city to city, a gas-station attendant. He’s mechanical, can’t maintain a job very lengthy. He additionally does farming, is aware of about horses. He’s been drifting.”

Wolverton takes out an atlas and opens it to the state of Washington.

Martin sweeps her fingers forwards and backwards over the map. “Now we have another murders over right here … Seattle, Portland, the subsequent 5, six, seven years. He’s going to kill once more. The nervousness, pressure. His thoughts is warped. He comes throughout as being mild-mannered. He can’t be rehabilitated.”

That afternoon, joined by Det. Ken Anderson, who has been investigating Coxe in reference to the rape and homicide of the San Diego lady, for which he’s now beneath arrest. Martin and Wolverton drive north to the fringes of city and takes a aspect highway alongside the financial institution of the Solar River. The highway ends in a small grove of cottonwoods. On the time of the killing a psychic had informed Wolverton, “The reply you need is in that tree.” However when Wolverton introduced he was going to chop it down to search out out what proof it held, native residents protested. Then a person who provided to X-ray the tree noticed six bullets inside. A block of wooden containing the bullets was lower out and despatched to the FBI laboratory. The tree, a fats, gnarled specimen with an oblong gap a foot excessive and a foot-deep lower in it, just isn’t notably spectacular. Martin walks across the web site, repeating what she has seen.

On the best way again, Detective Anderson fills Martin in on what he is aware of about Coxe. Passing an empty lot between two small body homes, Anderson says, “Our suspect was dwelling right here together with his mother and father in a trailer. They picked up and moved shortly after the Cottonwood homicide. He resurfaced in Portland, Oregon in ’86, in Bremerton, Washington, in ’86 and ’87, and in Walla, Walla, Washington, in ’88. He picked fruit within the Willamette Valley space and labored together with his father on a ranch in Cheyenne, Wyoming. On two events, he took his kids alongside on rapes.”

Anderson additionally tells Martin that Coxe married a girl named Jane when he was nineteen. She left him for an additional man, after which he married once more, this time a girl named Agnes, who “claims he divorced her as a result of he discovered her parked with an ex-boyfriend.”

Again on the workplace, Wolverton lays three pictures out on his desk, and Martin picks out the image of Coxe. “That is the one,” she says. “Oh sure. He’s going to speak to you, fill in all of the details. His well being may be very, very poor, and he has little need to remain alive. It’s going to take some time for him to recollect. There’s a sample, like a chunk of lace; he’s weaving out and in, however he retains following the identical sample.”

“Once I take three deep breaths, I’m going into an altered state,” Martin says. “My blood stress drops. I’m completely targeted on what I’m doing. In the event you ask me to spell one thing—neglect it. I can not spell or write a phrase out. I can draw and I can verbalize. It was emotionally carrying, however not it’s exhilarating. I’m going on and on and on. I used to want sugar; now I drink numerous orange juice. I imagine that within the subsequent ten or twenty years, what I do goes to be commonplace as we make large strides in understanding how the thoughts works.”

Martin first skilled her psychic powers on the age of seven. She was taking part in kick-the-can with the opposite kids who lived on her dead-end avenue in downtown San Francisco when she noticed, “with my eyes large open, my buddies throwing rocks and chasing me as in the event that they have been attempting to kill me.” Martin turned frightened and began to run, and the opposite kids did certainly run after her throwing rocks and sticks. When she made it to her grandparents’ home and ran up the steps, she heard a voice say, “Decide up that stick.”

“I knew my life could be modified if I obeyed the voice,” she says. “I picked up the stick and threw it, and the kids ran away. I informed my mother and pa, they usually stated, ‘It’s all proper.’

“A few week later, my mom and I have been strolling down the road, and I stated, ‘See that girl over there? One thing horrible is happening inside.’ From that point on, one thing occurred to me. I started to see inside individuals’s our bodies and what they thought and what they felt.”

From the start, household help allowed Martin to develop her reward. Each her mother and father had psychics of their households. “My speculation is that it’s genetic,” she says. Her grandmother was a card reader and her father, at seventy-nine, nonetheless makes use of his psychic skills in enterprise and the inventory market. “Not like most psychics,” says Martin, “I’ve by no means been informed, ‘No, you’re loopy,’ or ‘No, you couldn’t probably imagine that.’”

In her twenties and thirties, whereas married to an govt and elevating two sons, Martin pursued a profession as a singer and actress, however in 1970, her husband was transferred to Hong Kong. As she stepped off the aircraft, Martin heard the voice say, “Now’s the time.” In China, she started studying palms and giving psychic readings.

On returning to California in 1975, Martin arrange an workplace in Marin County doing psychic counseling and consulting for Gerald Jampolsky, a psychiatrist engaged on visualization strategies with most cancers sufferers. Then, sooner or later, whereas meditating in yoga class, she noticed—suspended in her thoughts—a useless physique and a avenue signal.

She drove to the Marin Sheriff’s Division in San Rafael, the place she met Sgt. Richard Keaton. In periods lasting a number of hours every, Martin utilized her psychic expertise to the case. She held the suspect’s key, figuring out six out of seven. Utilizing a map, she traced the suspect’s flight, predicting that he would carry out further crimes and that finally he could be arrested, carrying white and dealing in an institutional setting.

When the person was arrested a yr later, so many particulars matched Martin’s predictions—from the best way the suspect escaped to the truth that he was carrying white pants and a white coat for his job at an area hospital—that Sergeant Keaton was completely amazed. From then on, he consulted with Martin on completely different instances and acted as a liaison to different police companies once they needed the assistance of a psychic.

Every week later, I name Wolverton in Nice Falls, Montana. Whereas he and Detective Anderson went to California to query Coxe, they discovered that he wore a pacemaker, had tuberculosis, and had been positioned in a prison-affiliated hospital in order that his coronary heart could possibly be monitored, and is awaiting trial for the 1989 San Diego rape and homicide. Though Coxe had refused to admit, he had positioned himself within the neighborhood of Montana’s Cottonwood killings “He stated he used to go on the market,” explains Wolverton, “and he admitted that he adopted Patti Kalitzke and Lloyd Duane Bogle out to the cottonwood tree, pondering they have been his spouse and her boyfriend, then left and went to a bar the place he downed six Canadian Golf equipment and 6 beers. I really feel fairly strongly that he did it.”

In latest months, two witnesses have come ahead independently to help Wolverton’s perception. A person who had identified Coxe stated he had seen him have a confrontation with Patti Kalitzke on the afternoon of the murder and had requested him about it. “She thinks I’m not ok for her,” Coxe allegedly replied. “If she don’t wish to be with me, she’s not going to be with anyone, particularly that propeller head.”

The identical man witnessed Robert Coxe drive towards the homicide web site and two days later noticed blood in his automotive. A second witness confirmed that Coxe had bought the ammunition for a .45, an uncommon gun on the time and the identical caliber because the homicide weapon. And though the Cottonwood case just isn’t formally closed, for Capt. Keith Wolverton and Annette Martin, it has been laid to relaxation.

*Names and locations related to the suspect have been modified to guard the harmless.

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