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Former Ramsey friend wants right to see files mentioning him

Travis Henry
The Daily Times-Call

BOULDER — Former Ramsey family friend Fleet White Jr. and his wife, Priscilla, have filed a lawsuit in district court asking a judge to order the Boulder Police Department to turn over numerous documents related to the JonBenet Ramsey murder investigation.

White, who was with John Ramsey when he discovered his 6-year-old daughter’s body in the family’s basement in December 1996, is seeking documents pertaining to a California woman’s claim she was sexually assaulted as a child, according to the lawsuit.

“During the (California woman’s) investigation, plaintiffs learned that (the woman) had falsely reported to the Boulder police that she had been a victim of serious and violent crimes committed by members of plaintiffs’ family including plaintiff Fleet Russell White Jr.,” the lawsuit states.

“Additionally, (the woman) falsely reported that plaintiffs were part of a child sex abuse conspiracy and that members of (the woman’s) family were present at plaintiffs’ home on Dec. 25, 1996, at which time and place JonBenet Ramsey was sexually abused and killed,” the lawsuit continued.

Boulder police Chief Mark Beckner said on Thursday that his department and the city plan to fight in court against turning over the documents.

“We don’t want to release information from an open and active case file,” Beckner said. “That has been our position for the last five years, coming up on six.”

The lawsuit could signal White is still attempting to pursue an investigation against journalists who wrote stories mentioning him in the JonBenet Ramsey slaying.

White first sought criminal charges after a series of stories in which the California woman accused a group — some of whom were reportedly in Boulder on the day JonBenet Ramsey was killed — of sexually assaulting her as a child. The woman said she was assaulted in much the same manner as JonBenet and has known the White family since she was a small child.

The woman’s therapist later said the woman’s allegations were made four years before the slaying of JonBenet Ramsey and documented at that time.

White’s requests for a criminal libel investigation were eventually dismissed.

According to the lawsuit, the district attorney’s office has handed over some of the documents related to the woman’s claims about the sex abuse, even though it is part of the Ramsey investigation.

District Attorney Mary Keenan didn’t return phone calls Wednesday, but Beckner said his department worked with the DA’s office in deciding what could be released from the files.

Beckner said most of the information given to the Whites was “pre-investigation” and wouldn’t compromise the Ramsey murder investigation.

Last October, White was sentenced to 30 days in jail after he pleaded guilty to ignoring two subpoenas in a Ramsey -related trial .

White was subpoenaed in May and June of 2001 to appear as a witness in a criminal bribery trial. He said he chose not to appear because he didn’t think he had any relevant testimony to give.

The case involved lawyer Thomas Miller, who was accused of trying to buy a copy of the ransom note found in the Ramseys ’ house. Miller was acquitted.

Travis Henry can be reached at 303-776-2244, Ext. 326, or by e-mail at