The criminal cases have stunned people in the eastern Michigan area known as the Thumb. Ylen is well-known locally after talking to the Port Huron Times Herald years ago for a series of stories about being a rape victim. Ylen told police she had been raped in broad daylight in a Meijer store parking lot more than a year earlier.
There was no surveillance video, physical evidence or witnesses. James Grissom, an off-duty Meijer employee with a past sex-related conviction, was charged after Ylen said her attacker, like Grissom, had a skull tattoo. Despite insisting his innocence, Grissom was found guilty in 2003 and sentenced to at least 15 years in prison, an enhanced punishment because Ylen said her attacker gave her a sexually transmitted disease.
But it didn’t take long for Ylen’s story to start unraveling. Authorities learned she claimed to have been kidnapped and raped while visiting her parents in Bakersfield, Calif., just months after the alleged parking lot attack back in Michigan. No charges were filed.
“My daughter likes to have a lot of attention,” her father, Dale Hill, told Bakersfield officers in a 2001 police report that wasn’t uncovered until after Grissom’s trial.
After years of appeals, a judge in 2012 ruled that the police report could have changed the outcome of Grissom’s trial and ordered a new one, saying Ylen appeared to have “concocted incredible stories” in California. Prosecutors dropped the case without a second trial, and Grissom was freed in November after spending a decade behind bars.
You want to know who the real criminals are in this disgusting tale? Not the demented con woman who concocted this scam. No, it was the thugs of the criminal “justice” system who knowingly convicted an innocent man, then sent him to prison based on “evidence” that “unraveled,” apparently on its own, immediately after conviction. And even then that system fought for years to keep that innocent man imprisoned.
Of course prosecutors “dropped the case without a second trial.” They knew they had convicted an innocent man. But then, they most likely knew that during the first trial as well.
They just didn’t give a damn.