WESTLAND (WWJ) – Could Detroit’s money trouble be holding up justice in a high-profile double murder case?
It’s been nearly a year since 18-year-old Jacob Kudla and his 17-year-old friend Jourdan Bobbish left their Westland homes — never to be seen alive again. Their bodies were found five days later in an overgrown field near City Airport, along Lyford Street at French Road on Detroit’s east side. Both were found dressed only in undergarments, with a gunshot wound to the head.
“They beat the kids up, put them in the trunk of a car and took them to a field and shot them for the fun of it,” Bernie Kudla, Jacob’s dad, told WWJ’s Marie Osborne.
Bernie Kudla and his wife Vergie said they can’t believe their son’s case remains open and unsolved
“I wake up every morning sad with a broken heart, thinking I have to go through another day of this,” he said. “Jacob was the best thing ever and, you know, I was waiting for grandkids, and that will never happen.”
“The only thing that keeps me going today is trying to get justice for him. That’s the only reason I get up,” she said.
The parents said they are especially frustrated because police told them that the people responsible for her son’s death are already behind bars, awaiting trial on two other murders.
“We know how, we know where, we know who, the police department knows who, the prosecution knows who,” Vergie Kudla said.
Officials have told the family that there isn’t enough evidence to try the case, so they can’t sign an arrest warrant for the two alleged killers. The family, however, said there is plenty of evidence. The couple feels that the prosecution is just unwilling to go forward because they have the perpetrators on other cases.
“It’s an open and shut case. We’ve got the perpetrators, we’ve got the evidence. I just really believe they just don’t want to spend the money because Detroit is at the brink of bankruptcy,” he said.
Vergie Kudla said knowing who killed her son just isn’t enough. She believes closure will come when those responsible face what they’ve done in court.
“I want my son and I can’t have him. So, the least I can have is justice for his name,” she said. “I need that piece of paper that says my son was murdered by these people. I want it to be known who his killer was. I want him to not be a statistic,” she said.
The prosecutor’s office declined comment, saying the case remains open.
In July of 2012, larceny, obstruction of justice and tampering with evidence charges in connection to Jacob Kudla’s vehicle were filed against two ex-cons from Detroit, Casey Green and Larry Anderson. Police say Green and Anderson stripped the car and cleaned it with bleach to hide their fingerprints. The car was found behind a west side Detroit apartment building with its sound system removed the day after the teens went missing.
No arrests have been made in connection to the murders. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAK-UP.