Cold Case Posse Report #2: July 17, 2012


Arpaio 2 in 2D: Shock of Zullo

The July 17, 2012 press conference

Joe Arpaio Holds Press Conference to Let America Know He’s Still a Wingnut — Gawker headline

After the spectacular Cold Case Posse’s March Madness Press Conference/Book Launch, the intrepid “investigators” took the Show That Never Ends on the road to the Aloha State. On July 17, Sheriff Joe Arpaio and Mike Zullo held a “breathtaking” press conference to reveal to the world what they found. As irony-challenged Zullo explained: 

“It’s unbelievable how little information we were able to find.”

Once again, has examined the press releases, the claims, and the press conference and concludes that:

  1. Leftover hash is once again recycled,  
  2. We know a heck of a lot more about statistics, coding, and research than the Cold Case Posse does,
  3. Hawaii is NOT a hotbed of gaping loopholes for illegal immigrants to crawl through to citizenship,
  4. No one in Hawaii wanted to play in the CCP sandbox, and
  5. Mike Zullo needs a good tax attorney

Added 7/22/2012  Evidence is developing that Hawaii used its own codes separate and independent from the Federal codes. If this is correct, then the CCP blatently lied about several claims. More at

    • According to The 1961 Vital Statistics of the US – Volume 1: Natality (Page 5-3), states sent microfilm copies of the even-numbered birth certificates to the National Vital Statistics Division, which then coded onto punchcards and tabulated. The federal statistical processing was NOT done in Hawaii. Thus there was no reason for Hawaii to use the federal codes, and no coding for federal purposes was done in Hawaii. 
      • We do note that all the 1961 LFBCs that we have seen (both odd and even) have pencilled codes.  (See: Numbering Claim for links to those LFBCs.)

Birther Hash Rehash: Loose Ends from the Last Press Conference

  • Claim: No forensic examiner companies would look at the document because of the nature of the document,
    • FALSE and MISLEADING. Any court-certified forensic expert would certify ONLY an original document as authentic — not a copy, and certainly not an online image of a document. However, experts can and have issued opinions on the file itself. Some experts have even issued reports for World News Daily. The Cold Case Posse should have been aware of these reports via Jerome Corsi, reporter for WND. 
    • According to WND Reporter Aaron Klein, WND commissioned reports from three credentialed document examiners. WND never published these reports. 
      • Ivan Zatkovich of eComp Consulting has 10 years of experience as an expert witness in state and federal courts, civil and criminal litigation, doing document validation. Mr. Zatkovich has posted his report on the Internet. 
        • His conclusion on April 29, 2011: “All of the modifications to the PDF document that can be identified are consistent with someone enhancing the legibility of the document.”
      • Jon Berryhill of Berryhill Computer Forensics has provided expert testimony in and been certified by California and Federal courts as an expert in the field of computer crime and computer forensic analysis. 
        • His conclusion on May 1, 2011: for a complete analysis, access to the original document would be best.
  • Claim: No court would accept the document, you couldn’t get a court to accept the document as authentic. 
    • MISLEADING: The online PDF isn’t a legal document. No court would allow an online image of a state-issued document. That’s why a certified paper document would be submitted to the court in case of a trial or hearing. If Barack Obama’s certified paper birth certificate were properly submitted to a court, it would be accepted under the Federal Rules of Evidence Rule 803 (9). 
    • This was actually discussed in an administrative hearing for a New Jersey Ballot Challenge. Video, starting at 27:50
    • (Added 7/19/2012) This is also why no one in Hawaii can answer questions about the online document but they CAN verify the INFORMATION on the file to parties eligible to get a verification. It’s not because they believe it to be forged or not, they didn’t scan the document and had no control over the paper documents once they left the DOH. The PDF is outside their chain of custody. The INFORMATION on it, however, has been verified twice for the Secretary of State in Arizona, and a Federal District Court in Mississippi.   
  • Claim: (Added 7/19/2012) Zullo said: “We verified that they did not make a PDF file at the Department of Health in Hawaii. If the Department of Health in Hawaii did not release this PDF computer generated file, and this is not merely a photograph of a document, someone else created it. That [pointing at ‘LFBC’] is a forgery. There is no legal authority for anybody, including the President of the United States or his staff, to make an Hawaiian birth certificate.  Computerised, hand written, in crayon, doesn’t matter what it is, the only people that have the authority to do this is the Department of Health in Hawaii.  Any way you twist and turn with this document, it is plagued with problems. This document doesn’t even meet the test of the Department of Health’s own prima facia (phonetic) evidence requirement, which is the lowest form of evidence that you could get. It is in conflict with itself on its face. It’s time for this charade to stop.”
    • The online PDF file and printouts made from it are not official certified birth certificates, they are the IMAGE of an official certified birth certificate that was issued in April 2011. The online PDF exists because the Internet is an efficient way to show the INFORMATION on the official certified paper document to the public. This electronic file was never meant to be used for official purposes. That’s what the paper documents sent from Hawaii to President Obama are for. 
  • Claim: (Added 7/19/2012) The Cold Case Posse investigation is a serious, legitimate legal investigation. 
    • Objection, the claim assumes facts not in evidence so far. 

Vital Statistics Coding and Operations

  • Claim: Investigators learned that Hawaii Department of Health utilizes a coding system defined by the federal government to categorize and code the required information on all Birth Certificates registered by the state including those registered in 1961. 
  • Claim: This process involves writing specific number codes by hand and in pencil, placed next to relevant information contained on the birth certificate. 
    • TRUE. This is common when inputting data from one format to another, particularly in the early days of computing before Optical Character Recognition (OCR) processes. 
    • NOTE: According to the Division of Data Processing, Vital Statistics Programming Branch, Tape File Information, 1960-1961 Natality Tape Files for the United States, the Parent’s races were not maintained as part of the tape file. This is not the same as saying their races were not reported, only that they were not ultimately input and saved as part of the formal US Natality File. As such, no specific coding key is documented for either parent’s race, but later versions of the Natality File show without exception that a single shared numeric key was used for the race of fathers, mothers and children . In spite of the of fact that parent’s races were not part of the 1961 Natality File, circa 1961 Hawaiian Birth Certificates (which include Obama’s) regularly show penciled notations for race of both parents.

      At the same time, the document does indicate that the Child’s race was maintained in the tape file, and the specific coding key is provided. Unfortunately, Hawaiian birth certificates (in fact, most if not all state’s birth certificates) do not indicate a race for the child at all. That detail can only have been determined from the parent’s races, thus accounting for why the parent’s races were coded even though they did not necessarily need to be reported.

      That this was the process followed is made more explicit in later years. For example, the tape layout from 1968 shows unambiguously that the codes for race of father, mother and child were all the same, and also that the child’s race was “Determined from Parents Race.”

  • Claim: The coding numbers seen on the President’s LFBC are not consistent with the coding responses required by the federal government to match the information presented. The codes for Father’s Race and Occupation (Boxes 9 and 12B) mean “Unknown or unstated” and didn’t originally have anything typed in the box. The incorrect codes indicate that the President’s LFBC has been altered or amended.
    • FALSE. The video presented at the press conference showed a portion of what is purported to be the Vital Statistics Instruction Manual for 1961. THIS IS FALSE. More on this at
      • The pictured key is actually from the 1968 Natality Tape File layout instructions, which is available here. The layout for 1961 is different and available here. The only key in either tape layout is for “Race of the Child.” (We believe that the Race of the Mother and Race of the Father codes are the same, as there was no need to spell out the same coding 3 separate times.) The 1969 tape layout is also available and different from either 1961 or 1968. 
    • Knowing the correct year is thus critical to reading the code.
    • Note the critical difference between these layouts: 

1969 tape layout

In 1968, Code 9 in Box 9 meant “Unknown or not stated.(Race of parents only)” 


In 1961, Code 9 in Box 9 (Father’s Race) meant “Other nonwhite.”

    • By using the wrong key, the Cold Case Posse has come to a completely erroneous conclusion. 
    • The correct code for 1961 was used — “African” is coded as “Other nonwhite.” A coder seeing “African” in the field cannot conclude that the entrant was negro or another race since African isn’t a race as defined under code. Therefore the proper code was 9 since the race was unknown to the coder.
    • The CCP video also used the same key for box 12B, Father’s Kind of Business or Industry. According to the tape layout, this field was not reported to the federal government. Since the manual is missing, we have no information on what a 9 in that field meant but we know it isn’t the same coding as Box 9. 
    • For much more on the codes used, see Doctor Conspiracy’s excellent series of articles. 
    • The source for this error may be a fraudulent article published in The Daily Pen, an online birther blog that has deliberately manipulated images to present false “evidence” and has made false allegations about one of Obama’s attorneys in a ballot challenge. 
  • Claim: Investigators tracked down the person who was the local registrar at the time of Obama’s birth  who allegedly signed and coded the document which Obama now says proves his birth place as Hawaii. Verna K. Lee, now  a 95 year-old woman, allegedly signed the document on August 8, 1961. 
    • TRUE: Both birthers and debunkers discovered the name and address of Mrs. Lee a year ago. Birthers (including Jerome Corsi) had speculated that “U.K.L.Lee” was a joke by the forger and referred to the Hawaiian instrument. Her signature appears on other Hawaiian birth certificates. 
  • Claim: Mrs. Lee provided information about the vital information codes and their corresponding meanings. 
    • UNKNOWN.  According to Mike Zullo, Mrs. Lee was interviewed by Reporter Jerome Corsi by telephone while Mike Zullo recorded the call. We have no actual evidence that this call took place, what she actualy said, and whether or not her recollections matched the information obtained from other sources. 
  • Claim: The information Mrs. Lee provided challenges the President’s claim that his birthplace in 1961 was the Kapiolani Maternity and Gynecological Hospital. 
    • UNKNOWN. The Cold Case Posse didn’t provide a transcript of the conversation, but we do know that she was interviewed by Jerome Corsi (who identified himself as a reporter and not as a member of the CCP).  FURTHER, this does not comport with any known investigative procedure, as Corsi was both the source of virtually all the claims aired in the March CCP report, AND the original instigator of the CCP investigation itself, through and by the Arizona Surprise Tea Party, who created and signed a petition to Arpaio at his urging. So Corsi has a deep and documented vested interest in creating new claims and perpetuating the CCP.  We are deeply concerned about Corsi taking advantage of an elderly lady under possibly false premises. 
  • Claim: The number on Obama’s birth certificate proves the birth occurred somewhere else. 
    • FALSE. Under Construction.Documents came into the registrar in regional batches,Consecutively numbered in sequence by batch, regional offices in separate batches, Certs were numbered at the end of the month, Even numbered submitted to feds, Bates stamp (numerical stamper) 


      • Ah’Nee – 09945 – August 23rd
      • Nordyke, Susan – 10637 – August 5th
      • Nordyke, Gretchen – 10638 – August 5th
      • Obama, Barack – 10641 – August 4th
      • Sunahara, Virginia – 11080- August 4, 1961 (???) Virginia Sunahara was born at Wahiawa General in a different city (according to birthers)
      • Waidelich, Stig – 10920 – August 5th
  • Claim: Microfilm would show original, record could be amended at any time and verification wouldn’t show it
    • The State of Hawaii has never confirmed that microfilm or microfiche of circa 1961 birth certificates even exists. If it does exist, the same law that prohibits release of the President’s birth certificate to anyone except persons with a direct and tangible interest (HRS 338-18) would prohibit the release of the microfilm or microfiche as well. Note that, if it exists, the microfilm or microfiche would contain images of birth certificates of children born around the same time as President Obama. Making these images public or allowing inspection by non-DOH persons would violate the privacy of these private citizens. 

 Border Patrol: Foreign Births

  • Claim: Arpaio and his investigators have learned that for decades and remaining today, Hawaii has extremely loose policies regarding birth records – who can acquire them and how they are distributed.  
    • FALSE. Hawaiian laws are similar to other states and follow federal guidelines. The CCP has misread applicable statutes. Joshua Wisch, Special Assistant to the state’s Attorney General, said in a statement Tuesday: “Regarding the latest allegations from a sheriff in Arizona, they are untrue, misinformed, and misconstrue Hawaii law. … Not only are Hawaii’s vital records some of the best managed, but they also have some of the strongest restrictions on access to prevent identity theft and fraud.  
  • Claim: Hawaii registers children born outside Hawaii and gives them Hawaii birth certificates, therefore no Hawaii birth certificates can be trusted. These policies appear to be in direct contradiction to U.S. Immigration policy, a gaping loophole that makes it possible for foreign born people to legally establish U.S. citizenship.
    • FALSE. Hawaii (and other states) do provide birth certificates for children born out of state, but those birth certificates NEVER say the child was born in Hawaii. The birth certificate will always give the actual location of birth. 
    • According to Wisch, “The purpose of section 338-17.8, Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS), is to accommodate foreign-born individuals whose parents were residents of Hawaii but were temporarily outside of this state due to employment or military service. Similar to section 338-20.5, HRS, which provides for a certificate of foreign birth, anyone who receives a birth certificate under this section would have noted on their birth certificate the physical location of their actual birth. It does not confer citizenship, which is, of course, a power of the federal government.” … “We also note that section 338-17.8 was not passed until 1982, so it cannot apply to President Obama, who was born at the Kapiolani Maternity and Gynecological Hospital in Honolulu in 1961, as is reflected on his certificate of live birth, a copy of which can be viewed on the White House website, a link to which is provided on DOH’s website.”
  • Claim: (Added 7/22/2012) The CCP found a 1982 letter from the March 1, 1982, from then Hawaiian Director of Health to Hawaiian State Representative Herbert Segawa, who was Chairman on the House Committee on Health, about registering out of state births. The only concern the director had was about staffing.   The CCP presented this letter to show that Hawaii is irresponsible and unconcerned about the immigration and national security implications of this law.
    • MISLEADING. In the letter, the Director of Health says he is concerned that this new law will create more work for the DoH and they might need more money to implement it. He does not express concern that the state of Hawaii would be issuing birth certificates stating a person was born in Hawaii when the person was actually born somewhere else.  In fact, the reason the DoH did not express concern about attributing Hawaiian birth to people born elsewhere is because the law does not do that. Birth certificates issued under this law state the person’s actual place of birth.
      • The letter does show that Hawaii did NOT issue Hawaiian birth certificates to out-of-country biths prior to the law being passed and had no idea how many people would take advantage of that.   
  • Claim: Unattended births could be registered by persons simply knowing of the birth’s occurrence. The DOH had no investigative body to investigate out of hospital births. 
    • IRRELEVANT. President Barack Obama was born at Kapiolani, a hospital, thus even if out-of-hospital births somehow warranted “investigation,” his would not be in that category. 
      • Out-of-hospital births would not show the hospital name, they would show the address of the actual birth.
      • Every state has procedures for late or delayed birth registration. In every case, the Department of Health investigates unattended births. It takes a while for the paperwork, the doctor’s exams, the interviews. Honolulu in 1961 had 14 unattended births. There was no need for a dedicated investigative body for such a minimal number of births. 
  • Claim: A Hawaiian verification only proves DOH has a record on file, it doesn’t say if the record has been altered or amended. 
    • FALSE. While it is conceivable the COLB, printed in 2007 from data computerized in the 1980s, comprised ‘altered or amended’ records, that idea was put to rest with the release of the LFBC, which contained exactly the same information (plus additional information). Thus no official alteration occurred after the record was filed Aug. 8, 1961, and no official alteration occurred prior to Aug. 8, 1961 because the record didn’t exist yet. Under Construction

  • Claim: The Verification doesn’t verify the facts on the birth record as the record could contain additional information that would negate the verification. 
    • FALSE. The idea that “verifications don’t verify” is one the more absurd assertions in Birthistan’s epic history of absurdity. Any one piece of data in the verification (e.g., Place of Birth) has only one official value. That value, as maintained in official records, is what was verified. There is zero chance that there is a second, secret, superseding value that you can only get access to by saying magic words.
  • Claim: Document has been tampered with, only way to get document to do what it does is blatant manipulation.  Experts Tim Soletti, Jr and Garrit Pappit, working independently, couldn’t duplicate the layers in the document even though they each conducted over 600 separate tests, one using a Mac. Under Construction
    • Epectitus wrote: Here’s my immediate thoughts on Garrett’s pathetic work. (I can call him names, we have crossed swords on several forums). 
      • “According to Zullo, Pappit (and the other guy) performed some “600 tests” each that supposedly examined all the “known” optimization algorithms on both MS-Dos and Mac machines. Given that such algorithms behave differently depending on what hardware is used (to include the scanner) what software is used to process create the PDF and then what software is used to optimize it, what operating systems (each version of each operating system is different), what toggles are chosen on the software… well start doing the math. “600 tests” cannot be but the tiniest fraction of a percent of the possible combinations. Conservatively, I calculate there are hundreds of thousands of different possibilities. Pappit fail.” 
      • The output of any digital optimization process is dependent on such a broad suite of hardware/software/setting variables that there are literally hundreds of thousands of different combinations that would have to be checked before any competent investigator could confidently assert that the White House PDF was not the result of an ordinary optimization process. But according to Zullo, Papit attempted a mere 600 such tests. And based on Papit’s report, most of them must have been redundant.

        “Papit’s report is the functional equivalent of tossing a fishing line into Lake Meade, reeling in an empty fish hook ten times, and then declaring Lake Meade devoid of fish.”

  • Claim: The CCP searched for other states that registered foreign births and couldn’t find any. They conclude that Hawaii is unique in this law. Under Construction
    • FALSE. All states have procedures to register foreign adoptions, which result in a birth certificate for that state. In addition, some states have laws similar to Hawaii’s that allow resident parents whose child is born outside the state to register the birth. 

Can we register the birth of our child that was born in another country?

Yes. You may register the birth of your child who was born in a country other than the United States with the Division of Vital Records if either parent is a citizen of the United States and a legal resident of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The appropriate forms and instructions may be requested from the Division of Vital Records.

    • Arizona: A. The state registrar shall create and register a State of Arizona Certificate of Foreign Birth for an adopted person who satisfies all of the following: 1. Was born in a foreign country. 2. Is not a United States citizen. 3. Has gone through a completed adoption process in a foreign country before coming to the United States. 4. Has an IR-3 stamped passport.
    • Hawaii: (a)  The department of health shall establish a Hawaii certificate of birth for a person born in a foreign country and for whom a final decree of adoption has been entered in a court of competent jurisdiction in Hawaii, when it receives the following:
      • (1) A properly certified copy of the adoption decree, or certified abstract thereof on a form approved by the department; and 

(2) A copy of any investigatory report and recommendation which may have been prepared by the [director of human services]; and

(3) A report on a form to be approved by the department of health setting forth the following:

(A) Date of assumption of custody;
(B) Sex;
(C) Color or race;
(D) Approximate age of child;
(E) Name and address of the person or persons adopting said child;
(F) Name given to child by adoptive parent or parents;
(G) True or probable country of birth. The true or probable country of birth shall be known as the place of birth, and the date of birth shall be determined by approximation. This report shall constitute an original certificate of birth; and

(4) A request that a new certificate of birth be established.

(b) After preparation of the new certificate of birth in the new name of the adopted person, the department of health shall seal and file the certified copy of the adoptive decree, the investigatory report and recommendation of the director of human services if any, the report constituting the original certificate of birth, and the request for a new certificate of birth. The sealed documents may be opened by the department only by an order of a court of record or when requested in accordance with section 578-14.5 or 578-15. The new certificate of birth shall show the true or probable foreign country of birth, and that the certificate is not evidence of United States citizenship for the child for whom it is issued or for the adoptive parents. [L 1979, c 203, §3; am L 1990, c 338, §3]

  • Claim: There is rampant fraud in birth certificates. Therefore no birth certificate can be trusted as the only proof of place of birth. 
    • MISLEADING and WRONG CONCLUSION. Misuse of birth certificates for identification, and fraud and forgery are indeed major sources of Identy Theft. Stolen and counterfeit documents can be used to create new identities. According to the Department of Health and Human Services’ 2000 Report of Birth Certificate Fraud, a birth certificate on its own can’t be matched to an adult individual and thus can’t be used as a method of identification. But that doesn’t mean that the data on it is meaningless — particularly when the issuing agency independently confirms that the data on the certified paper matches what’s in the actual vital record. The BC says that a birth occurred to those people, in that place, at that time, of a particular gender and a specific name. It DOESN’T say that the person presenting it is the same person as on the BC. That’s what a proof of identity does — it matches the data to the individual.
      • The entire DHHS report is about document fraud by altering, counterfeiting, or obtaining birth certificates. It has nothing to do with any fraud related to the original birth record kept by the issuing agency unless the record is a delayed or out-of-hospital birth. Since the Hawaiian Dept. of Health has repeatedly (and under 2 administrations) said that what appears on Obama’s BC is what appears in the record, and the birth took place in a hospital less than a week before the birth was recorded, those procedural opportunities for fraud didn’t exist.
  • Claim: Obama’s birth certificate therefore can’t be relied on as proof of birth in Hawaii. 
    • FALSE. After 10 months of research, the Cold Case Posse has not uncovered a single example of a fraudulently issued State of Hawaii birth certificate. They have not provided evidence of even one child born somewhere other than the state of Hawaii who was issued a birth certificate stating the child was born in Hawaii. They have not shown anything indicating that Barack Obama was born anywhere but Hawaii. They have provided absolutely nothing to back up their assertion that there is rampant birth certificate fraud in Hawaii.


  • Claim: Investigators met with the Hawaii Assistant  Attorney General, Jill Nagamine.  Nagamine refused to give Sheriff’s investigators permission to see the original birth documentation held by the Hawaii Department of Health which was used to create the President’s long form birth certificate. Furthermore, Nagamine refused to verify whether the PDF birth certificate released by the White House is in fact an exact copy of the document released to the President’s attorneys.  
    • TRUE. Hawaii state law restricts who can access vital records and who can get official verification of information in those records. Zullo, Corsi, and the deputy from the Threats Division of the MCSO aren’t among the parties entitled to see vital records. The CCP’s trip to Hawaii doesn’t change that.  
  • Claim: (Corrected from Transcript 7/19/2012) Zullo said ” At one point in the conversation I held up a copy of that document [indicates LFBC] and I asked her point blank ‘could you at least tell me, is this a copy of the document that you provided Mr Obama’s attorney’s?’ She accused me again of wanting a verification of a birth certificate and pointed me back to her statutes. 
      • I said to her, if I had to present my drivers license to the public for whatever reason and I handed my drivers license to you and you scanned it into a computer, but then you decide to change some information around; maybe move some information around, and then you display it, is that my drivers license? 
      • Her response to me was, ‘but you still have a drivers license’. Y’know, we’re trained to understand what people are saying. The answer to that should have been ‘no’, but what she’s telling me is, that’s probably not what we released, but he still has a birth certificate. That’s what she’s saying to me.” 
    • MISLEADING. President Obama requested two copies of his certified birth certificate, which the Hawaii DOH sent. A staffer at the White House scanned the paper copy and posted the image as a PDF on the official White House website. Zullo printed out a copy of that image and showed it to Nagamine. So her statement that the copy of the PDF “was not what Hawaii issued but that there is a birth certificate for Obama” was correct. Zullo’s implication that the information on the PDF would thus not match the original record is false.  
  • Claim: Alvin Onaka wouldn’t meet with the CCP. 
    • Dr. Alvin T. Onaka is the Registrar of Vital Statistics for the State of Hawaii. He referred the CCP’s questions to Assistant Attorney General Jill Nagamine, the lawyer for the Hawaii Department of Health. Birthers have falsely accused Mr. Onaka of committing crimes. He has been named as a defendant in several birther lawsuits. There is nothing unusual about his asking his lawyer to speak on his behalf.
    • (Added 7/19/2012) The CCP went to the Department of Health as their first stop in Hawaii. Zullo and Mackiewicz arrived unannounced and without an appointment. They approached a security guard, identified themselves, and asked to see Dr. Onaka. 
      • “We wanted to talk to the State Registrar, Mr Alvin Onaka and ask him a simple question. ‘Sir, did you validate this document, the document that has been presented by the White House?’ … We were told immediately Mr Onaka doesn’t speak to the public. Detective Mackowitz advised him that ‘we’re not the public. We’re the police. We’re here conducting an investigation. Is there someone else we could talk to?'” See Transcript, 36:19.

        “… The Deputy Attorney General comes walking out, identifies herself and basically tells us again that Mr Onaka couldn’t talk to us. Detective Mackowitz asked her if there was a place we could speak in private. They said we could find an office that we could use for about fifteen minutes, and we went into that office.” See Transcript 38:00. 

  • Claim:The Cold Case Posse presented themselves as an official investigation and no one was willing to talk to them. They received no cooperation from Hawaiian authorities. (Added 7/19/2012) Detective Brian Mackiewicz was there, a fully compensated, sworn law enforcement officer, who was credentialed, and presented those credentials.
    • UNKNOWN. While states sometimes do assist the authorities of other states in investigating crimes or otherwise enforcing laws, out of a legal sentiment called “comity,” (basically just being friendly and cooperative in the hopes that if they need a helping hand in the future they may well get it), they are under no legal obligation to do so. The Cold Case Posse was not conducting an official investigation of an active case in their jurisdiction. They have no authority whatsoever outside of Arizona. They had the same authority to compel witnesses in Hawaii that every other tourist has: none. Hawaiian officials were required by law to insist that the CCP properly followed Hawaiian law. Whether this came across as stonewalling or following established procedures is a matter of perspective.
    • We have speculated that the presence of the deputy was intended to give the impression of an official investigation. They may have been attempting to impersonate law enforcement with authority in a state where they have none, in order to convince people to talk with the CCP.  (Added 7/19/2012) Indeed, Deputy 

      Mackiewicz presented his credentials to Kapiolani officials. See above quote from the transcript of the Press Conference.

  • Claim: “it’s unbelievable how little information we were able to find”
    • Confirmation bias Under Construction
  • Claim: There was no legal authority for anyone to make a PDF of the birth certificate. 
    • FALSE. Even Zullo said that Nagamine told him that the recipient could do whatever they wanted to with the certified copy. Hawaii has no legal prohibition against making unofficial copies of a birth certificate.  Under Construction
  • Claim: (Updated 7/19/2012) Kapiolani Hospital, where Barack Obama was born had a “log book that existed within the doors to the delivery area of of Kapiolani Medical Center where Barack Obama was reportedly born. In this book all births for a two year period were logged, and then the book was was retired to the hospital’s archives. Upon requesting access to the hospital’s archived log books, the posse was told that the hospital was not in the business of investigating birth certificates, but in the business of saving lives. Soon after this comment, the posse was asked to leave the facility.” 
    • MISLEADING: Access to any such registers would not be open to public inspection. They constitute “protected health information” under the The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).
      • Protected Health Information. The Privacy Rule protects all “individually identifiable health information” held or transmitted by a covered entity or its business associate, in any form or media, whether electronic, paper, or oral. The Privacy Rule calls this information “protected health information (PHI).”

        Individually identifiable health information” is information, including demographic data, that relates to:

        • the individual’s past, present or future physical or mental health or condition,
        • the provision of health care to the individual, or
        • the past, present, or future payment for the provision of health care to the individual,

        and that identifies the individual or for which there is a reasonable basis to believe it can be used to identify the individual. Individually identifiable health information includes many common identifiers (e.g., name, address, birth date, Social Security Number).

      • No Pilikia said: “I worked at Kapiolani as a student in ’76 & ’77, as an L&D [Labor and Delivery] staff nurse 1979-1983, an NICU nurse ’83 – ’90, & a part-time/ call-in nurse ’94-96 in both of those departments. The logbook was in L&D at the ward clerk’s desk. After a patient delivered & we transferred her to her new room on the post-partum floor, we went back to L&D & filled out the logbook. The 1961 logbook is probably locked in the office of KMCWC’s HIPAA compliance officer.
  • Claim: (Added 7/19/2012) The hospital library’s archives are open to the public, and with permission from the hospital anybody can go in there. Under Construction.


  • Claim: Two Maricopa County Board of Supervisors members refused to accept the donations for reimbursing expenditures for the deputy.
    • TRUE. The two board members felt that it was inappropriate for the Sheriff’s office to investigate based on private donations. Board member Don Stapley said the board’s acceptance of private funds would cover up what he believes was misspending of taxpayer funds for the Obama investigation.
      • Citizens for a Better Arizona‘s Randy Parraz said at the board meeting: “Yes we are against donations. We don’t want to privatize the sheriff’s office. We all pay our public dollars to hold them accountable. So, what, someone else goes in, say they give him $10,000, they can go investigate their own personal agenda? This is about holding public officials accountable with our taxpayer dollars. 
      • “No, he can no longer advance on our dime — it’s our money — and pay for someone to go to Hawaii, who he says did literally nothing, and come back and say, `Reimburse me on the backside. Someone bail me out and give me my money so I can pay for this.”  Video
      • Law enforcement shouldn’t go to whomever will pay the most for it. 
      • Some observers have questioned why the MCSO deputy accompanied Cold Case Posse member Mike Zullo and WND Reporter Jerome Corsi to Hawaii at all. If it was for security (as Arpaio has said), the CCP would have saved a significant amount of money (and avoided the appearance of taxpayers funding the “investigation”) by hiring security in Hawaii.  
  • Claim: The book was just a way to get the press conference to a larger audience in more detail. Mike Zullo hasn’t made any money from publishing his book about the investigation.  
    • FALSE. According to Zullo, he has received at least 2 checks totaling $1,400 to $1,500 that he immediately donated to his church.  
      • (Added 7/22/2012) At the press conference on July 17 when asked about income from the “book” Mike Zullo said he made “absolutely nothing”, then said “I didn’t make anything on that book when I left for Hawaii” … “Coming back from Hawaii, for a month in a pile of envelopes was a check for 700 dollars, and subsequently another one came two weeks later for 630 bucks. I didn’t even know it was there.” Then he went on to say “The publisher [Paperless Press, LLC] called me and goes ‘Hey, did you cash the checks?’ I wasn’t expecting a check. Got about fourteen, fifteen hundred bucks total that went directly to my church.”

        If Mr. Zullo received money directly from the publisher that is treated as income regardless of whether he subsequently gave the money to a charity. Since the money was made by selling a work product of the tax exempt organization, the MCCP, it was not his to keep nor give to his church without running afoul of the rules for charitable organizations.

    • An extensive complaint has been filed with the IRS alleging that “Directors/officers/persons are using income/assets for personal gain” and that the “Organization is involved in a political campaign” by investigating at the behest of the Surprise (AZ) Tea Party. Mike Zullo is specifically named in the complaint. 
    • (Added 7/24/2012) The sale of the MCCP report for profit on Amazon also continues to be in violation of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office own Code of Conduct Policy which states “Employees (and volunteers) are prohibited from using their official position … for … personal or financial gain”. As was mentioned above just giving the money to charity after it is received does not “make it all better”; it is still income. CBS Channel Five in Phoenix covered this violation in an investigative report titled Cold Case Posse violated MCSO Code of Conduct.
  • Claim: Zullo has said that the hotel they stayed at was far from being a nice hotel, that it was across the street from a check-cashing store and a liquor store. 
    • MISLEADING. This is an example of Zullo’s “creative truthiness.” Under Construction

 Additional Resources

The Arpaio/Zullo Press Conference, July 17, 2012

Press Conference July 17, 2012: Complete Video 

Unofficial Transcript of the July 17 Press Conference (Added 7/22/2012)

Demonstration videos shown at press conference: 

Unofficial Transcript of the Demonstration Videos from the July 17 Press Conference (Added 7/22/2012)

Recap of the PDF Issues: Video 1  

Decoding the Pencil Marks: Video 2  

Letter proves Hawaii lax with Birth Certificates: Video 3 

Non-cooperation of Hawaii Government Employees: Video 4 

Birth Certificate Numbers: Video 5

Press Release

Press Release: Supplemental 

Press Statement from the State of Hawaii, Attorney General’s Office on the Arpaio Press Conference and Claims (Added 7/22/2012)

Doctor Conspiracy’s Debunking of the Press Conference (Added 7/22/2012)

Media reacts to Arpaio press conference

Code “9”: the Cold Case Posse’s big lie (updated)

Cold Case Posse: more contradictions in their story

Birthers doubt Doc FOIA response (updated)

Indicting Sheriff Joe and the Cold Case Posse

Cold Case Posse video fraud: it gets worse

Cold Case Posse: backed into a corner (Updated 2)

Cold Case Posse: The Sword of Damocles



(Added 7/22/2012) Mike Zulo says he was a reserve officer, then spent 5 years as a detective in the Demarest, NJ  Police Department. He then spent 7 years as licensed investigator, 2 with own business. 

Falsehoods Unchallenged Only Fester and Grow