Richard L. Thornton, Architect and City Planner
The Georgetown Hearings
(November 1991 and February, March and April – 1992)
The hearings, reports and depositions about the organized crime in the Shenandoah Valley originated from at least three different sources. I never was in a position to see the big picture, so I suspect there were other individuals or agencies involved at a covert level. There were several high-level FBI and NSA agents working covertly in the Valley, who I never met. Susan was at the bottom of the pecking order, when we first started transmitting intel.
The hearings and depositions were held in secure meeting rooms and offices above a bakery-café in Georgetown. It was not possible for someone to enter the suite without passing guards and metal detectors. Witnesses, such as myself, reached the suite by going through a concealed door in the back of the kitchen of the café. That was so spies would not probably be able to discern the witnesses from normal customers.
The parents of Tim Connor, whose body was found next to our rental house, the night that I arrived in Virginia, devoted their lives to getting justice for their son. Eventually, their case was taken pro se, by a team of law professors at American University.
The legal team’s investigators quickly discovered that there had been many murders or suspicious deaths of law-abiding citizens, who had informed on illegal drug activities. Their evidence triggered the investigation that Bob, Sara, Susan, I and several other persons were involved in. However, the evidence that I gathered or forwarded from others to Susan included a vast of array of crimes. It was clear that Shenandoah County had become a playground for several criminal organizations, including more than one satanic cult.
The second impetus came from the Washington Post. Its executives were furious about the murder of their Senior Investigative Reporter and three other journalists in Shenandoah County. Being a world class newspaper the Post’s surviving investigative reporters quickly realized that journalists around the country were being slaughtered and that people very high in the Bush Administration were stone-walling police investigations.
The body of independent investigative reporter, Danny Casolaro, was found in the tub of Room 517 of the Sheraton Hotel in Martinsburg, WV on August 10, 1991. Casolaro’s main source of income was ownership of a computer magazine. The scene in the bathroom was made to look like a suicide, but hotel employees noted much damage to the walls and furniture in the main room from a violent struggle.
The Martinsburg Police only took a couple of photos of the body and did not treat the hotel room as a crime scene. West Virginia law requires that when there are no witnesses to a death that the body be autopsied. Instead Casolaro’s body was immediately sent by the police to a morgue to be rush-embalmed on a weekend, before members of his family were notified of his death.
Casolaro’s friends and family stated that he was in good humor. Two friends stated that he had told them that he was meeting with someone in Martinsburg, who was going to give him the final proof that a rogue office in the Justice Department were committing serious crimes.
Casolaro’s brother was a medical doctor. With this information, an attorney hired by his family was able to get a court order for an autopsy, which his brother participated in. Several of Danny’s finger nails had been pulled out. He had bruises on his abdomen. Traces of the chemicals that curare breaks down into were found in his body. It was clear that he had been murdered, but the District Attorney and police in Martinsburg refused to open a criminal investigation.
The first phase of the hearings was limited to people with a high security clearance, who had passed a polygraph. During that era there were many moles . . . well, traitors . . . in the Justice Department. For example, Robert Hanssen, held a supervisory position in the FBI counter-espionage unit and was spying for the Russians at the very same time that Susan Karlson joined it. He was not arrested until 2001!
Major national security findings
In 1975, on a farm in Harris County, GA, ultra-rightwing elements of the United States had formed an organization that had as its goal the conversion of the United States into a ultra-conservative one party authoritarian society by 2005. The gathering included high ranking military officers (except from the US Navy), certain politicians, mega-wealthy owners of defense industries, high-ranking federal government bureaucrats, representatives of several neo-satanic cults, representatives of several mega-wealthy TV evangelists. plus mega-wealthy laymen, who controlled the Southern Baptist Convention and the Church of Jesus Christ and His Latter Day Saints from behind the scenes. It was not known what this monster called it self, but investigative reporters had called it Octopus.
- Most of the 100+TV news reporters and journalists, who had been murdered in 1991, had either broadcast TV news reports or written articles on Octopus. The remainder were investigating drug operations, run by ex-CIA officers and law enforcement officers, loyal to Octopus.
- The Rev. Billy Graham was invited to attend the organizational meeting of Octopus, but declined. Graham has just released a book, Storm Warning (1992), which describes Octopus and prophecies its sudden collapse many years in the future. The book is thinly veiled as a dream that Graham supposedly had. *Note, Billy Graham was a lifetime Democrat. His original book presented the beast as being Neo-Fascist. However, his son Franklin has “edited” the book to change the nature of the Beast from being Neo-Fascist to being Liberal Democrat.
- The Air Force General in charge of the National Radar Defense Line in Florida is ordering the radar antennas cut off, when certain large civilian transport planes approach American air space. The airplanes are most likely carrying cocaine or marijuana.
- Cocaine is being hauled to regional distribution points by US Air Force C130 four engine prop-jet cargo planes, two engine cargo jets and airplanes owned by certain “Christian” evangelists. From there, it is being distributed by trucks, protected by state and local law enforcement personnel. Active CIA intelligence officers and Justice Department employees may also be involved with the distribution.
- Billions of dollars of profits from this government run drug cartel is flowing into Washington, DC and the major cities of Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Texas. Influential persons are being offered low interest loans, zero interest loans and outright gifts in return for switching their loyalty from the Democratic Party or moderate Republican organizations to Octopus. Christian evangelical organizations, TV evangelists and mega-churches are perfect mechanisms for laundering drug money, because they are immune to government scrutiny.
Federal Witness Protection Program
The second phase involved interrogation and deposition under oath of at least 25 witnesses from northwestern Virginia. I was of the few or the only witness, who was allowed to listen to other testimonies and ask questions myself. All 25 witnesses were offered a new identity and safe community to live in under the Federal witness protection program. We eventually learned that it was Knoxville, TN.
Most accepted a fresh start with a new life. I did not, because I could not practice architecture under a false name and in a state, where I did not have a license. Nevertheless, the Assistant US District Attorney supervising the witnesses was instructed to stay in frequent contact with me [He did] and provide FBI assistance for my protection, if I felt threatened.
I am not aware of anytime that the FBI offices in Georgia ever helped me. After George W. Bush was elected President, a new Federal District Attorney was appointed for Knoxville, who immediately fired the Asst. DA, who handled our witness protection program. He was not replaced. Most of the witnesses were dead within two years. A couple from Sao Paulo, Brazil did most of the “hits.”
The situation for me with the FBI also worsened after 2000. In the spring of 2003, I was delivering my hand-made Creek and Maya pottery to shops in Georgia and Tennessee. An FBI agent from the Lawrenceville, GA facility followed me the entire route. He would go into the shop after I left and tell them that my pottery was actually REAL Pre-Columbian pottery that I had dug from graves. All my pottery was signed and dated. The FBI agent told the shop and museum owners that they would have trouble with the IRS, if they continued to sell my pottery.
Oh, the irony of it all
Vivi stayed in Alexandria almost the entire time that I was involved with the depositions. If we couldn’t get an employee to milk the goats, I would have to leave before rush hour traffic to do that chore. Also, every few days, I had to make cheese and so in either situation, would have to sleep in my bedroom alone on the farm.
My anti-wife, Diana, continued the policy of making me miserable in hope that I would have an affair with another woman. A few times, I noticed that I was being followed by a woman driver to the Danby’s house in Alexandria, but it never dawned on Diana that French candy was also staying there. In fact, she would mock me for staying at a middle age couple’s house rather than with a girlfriend, like a “real man” would.
It became quite common for Vivi to wait down in the cafe, while I was in depositions. There was a news stand nearby that sold abbreviated-content, electronically transmitted newspapers from Europe and Latin America. They also had outside tables just like in France. On several occasions, the attorneys from American University and the Justice Department took breaks down there and chatted with her. They assumed that Vivi was my wife, since she wore the big wedding ring from an earlier marriage to keep other men away.
Our main court reporter was a cute blond about 25 years old. She had been making eyes at me for some time, hoping I would ask her out. Getting frustrated with that approach, she invited me after a session to come over to her apartment for an Italian dinner. The senior law professor overheard her and said, “You’re wasting your time, honey. Richard is not the type of husband to cheat on his wife. Besides, she’s a gorgeous doll and downstairs right now in the cafe’ waiting for him. “
Then Jeff turned to me and said, “You don’t know how lucky you are, Richard, to have a wife like her. She enjoys being with you and will wait for hours, just to later go out to dinner with you.”
I have no idea what transpired in the third phase because it was strictly an in-house analysis of all evidence. It is quite typical for the FBI to offer immunity to certain minor players such as “regular” VBI agents and sheriff’s deputies, who were just doing what they were told to do.
I was called back to the secret offices in early March of 1993. They had some more questions for me about the night time attacks by rogue National Guardsmen and Army Rangers. Soon the FBI began issuing arrest warrants. Eventually, all but one of the Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors would be arrested, along with most of the department heads, the top five people at the Sheriff’s department, several division managers and the land fill director. Several dozen other people in northwestern Virginia were also arrested.
Susan couldn’t tell me what she would be doing, but I did know that she had a one-year covert assignment in Georgia. She obtained permission to carry out extensive interviews with me about the geography, climates, history and politics of Georgia. I was to be paid $85 an hour of recorded tape. That was the going rate for a experienced professional with a license. The letter also said that I would be reimbursed for travel, food and housing costs. The letter did not mention Susan’s name or specifically what type of consultation I would be doing, so I showed it to my wife. She was not terribly interested in anything, but the amount of money I would be paid.
I finally had an opportunity to fulfill Vivi’s demand that I spend a whole night with Susan so she could experience waking up in a man’s arms. Susan cooked the meals, so the arrangement saved the government several hundred dollars. No one complained because I had been given 100% of the credit for Susan’s transformation.
Those two days were very special. There was sadness at the end, because we wouldn’t see much of each other for a year, but Susan had a whole new glamorous life ahead of her. I strongly suspected that I would never see her again, but Vivi and I had made a dramatic difference in Susan’s life.
The Summer of Love
During the spring of 1992, we learned that Diana’s mother had lymphoma cancer and that it would probably eventually be terminal. Diana announced that she would be spending the entire summer with her mother in metro Atlanta. I would have been less suspicious of her actual agenda had not her behavior with me suddenly changed.
For over a year, she had repeatedly suggested to me that I find a younger woman, who wants children, so I could be happy. The announcement of the summer in Atlanta was simultaneously joined by her contemptuous remarks about me not being a real man. She complained that over a year had passed and still I did not have a girlfriend. (Actually, I had two girlfriends, but obviously she knew nothing about them.) She started repeatedly calling me a loser that no woman would want.
The night before she was to leave for Atlanta, my wife told me that she wanted “to cash out” on the marriage with a divorce and that when she returned in August, we should divide up our assets and file for divorce. This time I got her on tape with my “James Bond” voice actuated tape recorder.
As soon as Diana went upstairs to bed, I sent a message to Vivi in France with my computer. It was 5:00 AM in Paris Vivi had already said that as soon as I had a signed divorce petition, she was going to buy our farm and cheese creamery then sell me half interest after the divorce judgment was issued. That purchase would almost make the divorce instantaneous. Whether or not my EX could convince her married boyfriend to get a divorce was her problem.
Six weeks of paradise
As soon as Vivi woke up the next morning, she sent back a message, asking me to stay near the computer for a few minutes. She needed to talk to her daughter Aimee. Actually, I was already in bed. Maybe three minutes later, Vivi sent another message, stating that she wanted to learn goat cheese making ASAP.
What I didn’t anticipate was that she and Aimee took the next available Concorde to JFK (New York City) then took a shuttle flight to Dulles International Airport. Vivi then paid cash for a used rental car and drove out to the farm without asking me for directions. She definitely had the brains of a master spy. She had only been to my house once. Vivi was embracing me in our front yard before my wife even arrived in Atlanta by car. She only brought their toiletries and one change of clothes. She planned to buy clothes for her and Aimee, plus toys/games/dolls for Aimee in Washington Area stores.
What my EX had actually planned was for some members of her “sisterhood” to seduce me and secretly record the scenes. Therefore, in her mind, she could triumphantly return from Atlanta to show me the photos and tapes then demand all of our assets in the divorce settlement. Both she and the witches involved, were so contemptuous of me, they assumed that no woman would have me otherwise.
There was absolutely no doubt about my interpretation of the situation. At 8:30 AM, about an hour after my wife departed, a member of her sisterhood called me up and asked me to be her guest for lunch to discuss mutual marketing possibilities between her employer, a general contractor, and myself. At lunch, there was very little discussion about business concerns. The woman instead harped about the fact that no wife would leave her husband alone for an entire summer and therefore I should immediately find another woman . . . such as herself. About a week later, I later saw that woman on the side of the highway between Strasburg and Front Royal. Her car had broken down. She was wearing a long black robe and silver crescent moon necklace . . . the badge of office for a witch priestess.
What actually happened the remainder of the summer was that a professional French actress and spy, watched through a window screen above as one 25ish witch after another showed up at my front door with wine bottles, but found themselves rebuffed. Of course, Vivi was chuckling all the time, because she remembered that such stunts were exactly what she was asked to do initially as a college student. They had led her to the miserable life she endured before meeting me.
Vivi’s only concern was her daughter. She barely knew her father, who was a philandering playboy. Until Vivi promised before God and me to change her life and become a good mother, the poor little girl could go many days or weeks without seeing her mother. Also, she had never lived outside of Paris, much less in a foreign country. Aimee did fine during the few days that they spent at Christmastime in Alexandria. However, Vivi was contemplating the full six weeks of a tourist visa then the rest of Aimee’s childhood.
The concerns proved unfounded. I greeted her daughter again with “Bonjour Aimee! Bienvenue dans ma ferme!” She immediately hugged my legs and asked me again to be her father. She then asked me to sleep with her mother, so she would be happy . . . then ran off singing with glee to pet my herd dogs and goats. The only time the little girl cried was when she learned that she would have to leave the farm for a few weeks until they could return on a different type of visa.
Vivi wore French peasant clothes . . . except when we went out to eat or shop (of course, always outside the Shenandoah Valley). She worked in the garden and helped me make cheese. We lived as husband, wife and daughter. We attended church at Foundry United Methodist Church (1814) in Washington, DC. It has large stain glass windows like French Gothic churches. That is where Vivi wanted get married, if we ever went beyond the Indian ceremony at Harpers Ferry . . . since being divorced twice, she could not get married or take communion in French Catholic churches. It was the happiest days of my life. Heaven could be no better.
Jimmy Dean sausage omelets
The Saturday morning after Vivi and Aimee arrived, I had to take the dogs at little before 8:00 AM to the vet for rabies shots then run some chores. Vivi said that she would stay at the house so she and Aimee could take a walk before breakfast. I didn’t get back until almost 10 AM.
Vivi greeted me with the news that a nice man came to the kitchen door to buy cheese. She didn’t know where the key to the cheese creamery sales room was. Vivi invited him in for breakfast, since he seemed real kind like her Richard. She said the funny thing was that he had the same name as the sausage in the refrigerator so she used that sausage to make a fancy French omelet for him. We had Jimmy Dean sausage in the refrigerator, so I assumed that the man’s first name was Jimmy. Tune in next chapter to find out how funny this story ends.
A surprise visit from Katie
By the first week in July, we thought that we had our charade down pat. It helped greatly that my surrogate wife was a professional “other woman” and spy! LOL Because my house was shaded by trees and shielded visually by a hump in the 550 feet long driveway, neighboring farmers had no clue that she was there. We parked her car in the barn. Since there was no space for Aimee in my pickup, we used Vivi’s car for going into Washington, DC to deliver cheese.
Vivi would hide from postal carriers, feed trucks, dairy inspectors and local cheese customers. However, when tourists from other regions appeared, she would greet them in her French dairy maid outfit and present herself as my wife. Let’s face it. Her high intelligence, extremely good looks and figure made her a “12.” The tourists would buy huge amounts of cheese from her.
One day, I was hot and sweaty from bush-hogging the west pasture and so was taking a shower. Vivi was starting a gourmet French meal in the kitchen. Remember, she was near graduation from the Ecôle de Cordon Bleu! Aimee was playing with my herd dogs in Toms Brook. It was the ultimate scene of domestic tranquility.
Then just after I had stepped out of the shower to dry off, I heard a brief tapping on the kitchen door then the door partially open. “Hey Richard, I am just getting some water for Ellie. We’ll be back tomorrow and stay longer.”
I recognized the voice. “Oh <expletive deleted> it’s Katie Couric. What is she doing down in the Valley on a week day?” We saw Katie and her late husband, Jay, fairly often, when she was a reporter for Channel 4 in Washington, but much less often now that she was co-anchor for NBC’s Today Show. Jay and I went out about once a month on Saturdays to look at Civil War battlefields. Their house was about three miles down Tom’s Brook. However, they always called on the phone before coming over.
I thought, “I am dead meat. She is now looking at the face of a beautiful French woman, cooking in my kitchen with a daughter outside, that could pass for my daughter.” I quickly got dressed and ran down the stairs.
Vivi was NOT in the kitchen. Katie asked which cabinet contained glasses then began filling the glass in front of the wide windows that overlooked the kitchen garden. She was staring at something out the window. I just knew it was Vivi picking asparagus for dinner.
Katie didn’t mention what she saw out the window, but did ask about the meal ingredients aligned on our tile counters. “Richard, I didn’t realize that you were a gourmet cook.”
I told her that I was not, but since my wife was gone for the entire summer, I was trying to learn how to cook. She then noticed the French language cookbook and said that she didn’t know I spoke French. I said yes, but not fluently. Katie then asked if she, Jay and Ellie could come by tomorrow so Ellie could pet the baby goats. I said yes, but please call first.
After Katie drove off, Vivi came up to the kitchen. She HAD been picking asparagus, but ran up the house and hid under the East portico, when she heard a woman’s voice. Apparently, Katie had seen her daughter, playing with the dogs, but maybe assumed it was a neighbor’s child, since I didn’t have any children. Well, perhaps Katie was suspicious, but could not come up with any plausible explanation for the French cook book in the kitchen and the fact that there was only a two-seat pickup truck visible on the farm . . . no car belonging to “the other woman.”
Vivi asked who the woman was. Did I have a secret lover living nearby? I told her that it was just a married friend. I told her that we needed to watch television tomorrow morning. Vivi was confused.
Well, the next morning I turned on the TV to Channel 4, the NBC affiliate in Washington. Katie was broadcasting from the NBC studio in Washington that day. Almost immediately, Vivi exclaimed, “Oh there is Katy Couric. I know her. She is very nice.”
Shocked, I asked, “Vivi, how do you know Katie Couric?”
She answered, “Her apartment is near my apartment in New York. We have chatted a few times at parties and on the sidewalk. I have an apartment in New York for when I have missions in the United States or want to go to special parties.”
Surprised, I told her that she had never mentioned her apartment in New York City.
She winked, “Since I met you, there was no reason to mention the New York apartment to you. You can come with me to the parties, but I will have to buy you some nicer clothes.”
“Vivi, that is who was down in my kitchen. Katie and her husband have a historic home near here. I worked on it as an architect, Then Jay and I began looking at old battlefields together. ”
Vivi laughed, “Re-shard, that is funny! It is not funny for you, maybe, but can you imagine the look on Katie’s face, if she had seen me in the kitchen? She thinks that I am a very important person in France. I cannot wait until this fall, when I see Katy and tell her that she was in my future house.”
Jay, Katie and Ellie did come by the next day. I kept them near the barn, while Vivi and her daughter stayed upstairs in the house. Katy and Ellie wanted to use the bathrooms upstairs, but encouraged them to use the one in the cheese creamery, instead.
Throughout June and July, my wife was cleaning out our bank account to pay for huge bar and restaurant tabs. It looked like she was buying rounds of drinks and meals for groups of people. I complained about it, but she merely responded that she was tired of being poor and it was my fault that we didn’t have any money.
We had money, but one can’t spend $960 a month ($1920 today) on booze and restaurant meals then expect to remain solvent. I would have been dead in the water, had not Vivi paid for all the food, gasoline and power bills while she was on the farm. We were selling a lot of cheese, but also had hefty expenses, running a dairy.
On July 20, 1992, the Democratic Party selected William J. Clinton as its nominee for President and Al A. Gore, Jr as its nominee for Vice President.
Late in July 1992, my wife called one night. She first asked me if I had met any nice women that I would like to know better, while delivering cheese. I told her no. She then told me that she was driving up to our farm for our anniversary on Aug. 3 and my birthday on Aug. 4 then heading back to Georgia to get an apartment in Dalton, GA where she had a new job. She did not mention the word divorce, but I assumed by the job change meant that a formal separation was in the offing.
On the morning of August 1, 1992 Vivi and I drove our vehicles to Bob and Sara’s house. She was going to let their sons drive her car during the month that she had to be outside the United States because of visa restrictions. During the next few days, she placed a deposit on a rental townhouse in Alexandria and found a state certified bilingual teacher for Aimee . . . and me. Vivi rightly expected me to become fluent in French.
After Vivi purchased the farm and cheese creamery, my soon-to-be-ex-wife and I would become debt free and each of us would get $160,000. I would then buy back half interest in the farm with my check and my ex-wife could pursue her desires, whatever they were.
Vivi planned to return the first week of September on a business visa, since she would be legitimately buying real estate for a vineyard. With that visa, she could come and go to the United States as she pleased, but planned to spend as much time as possible with me – finally getting to see the beautiful Shenandoah Valley. We would no longer have to conceal our deep love for each other.