Minnesota Department of Human Services neglected to alert FBI regarding missing child

Author scheduled to testify at hearing

Polk County Social Services was repeatedly contacted by individual(s) attempting to intimidate a journalist.

Polk County Social Services was repeatedly contacted by individual(s) attempting to intimidate a journalist.

by Timothy Charles Holmseth

Social workers should have seen red flags everywhere in Polk County, Minnesota when their Child Protective Services (CPS) division began receiving unprecedented child protection complaints against a local journalist; only days after he began conducting interviews regarding a missing child from Florida named HaLeigh Cummings.

HaLeigh Cummings, 5, was reported missing on February 10, 2009 and is subject to an Amber Alert.

In May of 2009, Timothy Charles Holmseth, journalist, author and award-winning newspaper reporter had just conducted recorded telephonic interviews with individuals in Florida, when false reports suddenly began to flood in to CPS regarding him and his children.

Copies of the redacted reports reveal that nearly every complaint made to CPS mentioned the missing child HaLeigh Cummings, and each time, the caller suggested to the social worker that Holmseth was not ‘mentally stable’.

Timothy Holmseth was once recognized with a first place award for Best News Series from the North Dakota Newspaper Association for covering a story that spanned nearly a year. Nontheless, the reporter insisted Holmseth’s jouralism work indicated something was wrong with him.

SAMPLE 1 – – – “Another concern that REDACTED has regarding Tim is that is he is obsessed with missing children. Tim is not working and REDACTED states he spends all his time researching various missing children reports. REDACTED thinks he is trying to solve something.” – 05/26/09 / PCSS

Fact: Holmseth had ony been condcuting interviews for approximately 10 days when the above report was made. He was also writing for various magazines including OPEN Magazine in Fargo. He was a freelancer.

SAMPLE 2 – – – REDACTED went on to say that Tim has an obsession with a missing girl from Florida named Haley Cummings [sic] and Tim has written a book about it and supposedly had it published.” – 08/08/11

Police Incident Reports generated by the East Grand Forks Police Department reveal the police began to receive calls about Holmseth at the same time CPS did. Several of the callers to the EGFPD worked for Crystal Sheffield, mother, HaLeigh Cummings.

One caller, Donna Wagoner, Davie, Florida was employed by a company called Xentel, Inc. based out of Fort Lauderdale. Xentel is a shady company with a reputation for operating charity scams and defrauding the consumer. Xentel has been sued by Attorney Generals across the United States by states including Iowa, Missouri, Ohio, Colorado, and South Carolina.

In a police report taken by Lt. Detective Rodney Hajicek, EGFPD, Donna Wagoner requested the police telephone Holmseth and advise him that Xentel did not want him to write about their company. At the time, Holmseth was working on a story regarding a photo of the missing child that had been Photoshopped for use in an online charity scam. He had learned during interviews with the missing child’s grandmother that a website had been created to trick the American public into believing their donations would be used to “search” for HaLeigh.

Violating virtually every single protocol and protection afforded to American citizens under the First Amendment, Lt. Hajicek contacted Holmseth and suggested he was harassing Xentel.

Holmseth reported his information about the manufactured photograph to the Minneapolis FBI, and Florida FBI agents subsequently visited Wagoner at Xentel.

While the FBI was acting on Holmseth’s information as they attempted to locate the missing child, the EGFPD was trying to intimidate Holmseth and shut him up.

In the summer of 2009, Polk County CPS agent Miranda Cassetta and Sgt. Detective Chris Olson, EGFPD went to Holmseth’s home and demanded entry per a [false] report they received claiming Holmseth had a loaded gun in reach of a child.

Holmseth says this is very concerning, because by the time they received this, their fifth unfounded CPS complaint, and the myriad of un-founded police reports, CPS and police should have become suspicious of the CPS complaints and out-of-state callers and contacted the FBI.

There was an active Amber Alert for HaLeigh Cummings and the callers were all related to the case and/or mentioning the missing child.

Holmseth also contacted the Polk County Attorney Greg Widseth and the Sheriff’s Office.

Shortly after CPS and the EGFPD went to Holmseth’s home, Crystal Sheffield’s media consultant, Art Harris, who is listed amongst the callers to the police, published information about it on the World Wide Web to further nurture the perception Holmseth was crazy and not be believed.

In 2011, William Staubs, bounty hunter, Weston, Florida forwarded an extremely incriminating email thread to Holmseth. The emails revealed, that the same individuals that had been calling the police on Holmseth in 2009, had made contact with Rhonda Callahan, Manvel, North Dakota.

The “REDACTED” name blacked out in the Reports may be Callahan. However, Attorney Michael Mattocks, Callahan’s lawyer, told the Honorable Tamara Yon in open court that Callahan never made any CPS reports.

Callahan has a child in common with Holmseth, and Crystal Sheffield’s staff from Xentel had contacted her to discuss filing a CPS complaint against Holmseth. The emails show the initial plan was to claim Holmseth slept with a loaded gun.

Holmseth was interviewed in 2010 by the FBI and turned over various recordings of interviews he conducted. The FBI requested the interviews of the same individuals that had been calling the EGFPD.

Holmseth says he advised Polk County social workers of what was going on and provided a mountain of evidence in various formats.

Holmseth says that in 2012, Maria Burgun, a millionaire from Broward County, Florida met with the Southern District FBI after she was threatened with a trip to the ”Hoover Dam” by an anonymous caller. Burgun provided the FBI with the name of a person that admitted to her, that he had assisted Donna Wagoner in Photoshopping the missing child’s picture.

The man’s name is also recorded by the EGFPD as a person that had been telephoning police and soliciting Holmseth’s arrest.

Holmseth believes local law enforcement and CPS had a legal obligation to act upon information regarding HaLeigh, but instead, chose to harass and intimidate a journalist while neglecting to alert the FBI.

Holmseth has filed a grievance to the MDHS and is scheduled to testify before Human Services Judge Douglass Alvarado on Thursday, August 29, 2013.

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