ALPENA — Five phone calls, a 2007 Hummer, and other details in police reports offer a shrouded glimpse into the investigation of the 2021 deaths of Alpena’s Abby Hill and Brynn Bills.
The reports, obtained by The News through a Michigan Freedom of Information Act request, offer some new details about the Michigan State Police investigation of Bruce Kinsey, prosecuted by the Michigan Attorney General’s Office for interfering with their investigation into the deaths.
Joshua Wigau and Brad Srebnik, both of Alpena, face murder charges related to those deaths.
Members of the State Police Fugitive Team served Kinsey with an investigative subpoena at his home on Feb. 9, then followed him to the MSP Alpena Post, where he was interviewed by attorneys from the Attorney General’s Office and several police detectives, according to the reports.
Police arrested Kinsey on May 12 as he served a one-year sentence on unrelated charges.
Though obscuring most details on their heavily redacted pages, the police reports — especially an affidavit requesting a search warrant on Kinsey’s phone — provide a partial timeline of police investigations:
∫ Aug. 2, 2021: A man related to the investigation returns home from the Lansing area. Upon his return, he is met at his house by Kinsey and at least one other person. The redacted reports do not identify whom Kinsey met.
∫ Sept. 15, 2021: The Michigan State Police Fugitive Team encounters a 2007 Hummer at a location that could not be determined from the redacted reports.
On the same day, according to court documents and separate police records obtained by The News, police arrested Abby Hill on an outstanding warrant and Brad Srebnik for illegal possession of brass knuckles.
Police interviewed someone — whose name is obscured in the police report — at the Grayling Crime Lab subsequent to the stop of the Hummer.
∫ Sept. 25, 2021: Someone places five phone calls from a phone investigated by police. Police served a search warrant to obtain records related to Kinsey’s phone, but the redaction of the police report makes it unclear whether the five calls were associated with Kinsey’s phone.
The phone calls came between 6 and 6:45 p.m. and lasted between zero and 49 seconds, according to the report.
∫ Sept. 27, 2021: A man contacts police to report two men trespassing on his property, referencing a picture with a date and time stamp of 6:11 p.m. that day.
Other police reports say a neighbor of Srebnik’s parents reported sighting two men, whom police later identified as Wirgau and Srebnik, on a trail cam in the woods near Srebnik’s parents’ house.
Police found several guns, ammunition, and at least one black duffel bag on that property, according to a motion filed in court last year by Alpena County Prosecutor Cynthia Muszynski.
Late the same day, someone turned himself in to the State Police-Alpena Post, according to the redacted report.
Police arrested Wirgau that day on charges related to an alleged Sept. 21 hijacking.
∫ Sept. 28, 2021: According to the report, police discover human remains. While the reports provide no further details, that is the same day police dug in Wirgau’s Alpena Township yard and found Bills’ body.
∫ Sept. 29, 2021: A medical examiner performs an autopsy on the body at Western Michigan University, identifying the body via dental records.
∫ Oct. 1, 2021: Police conduct an interview at the Alpena Post.
∫ Oct. 13, 2021: A person had used his mother’s cell phone during the previous week to make contact with associates, Detective Sgt. Anthony Utt wrote in the police reports.
According to Muszynski’s motion, Srebnik had engaged in frequent phone conversations with his mother while Srebnik was in jail, talking about the disappearance of Hill and Bills in a coded language.
Several entries in the police reports are undated, but detail the following:
∫ The report references police receipt of several tips.
∫ In a phone conversation between people whose names are obscured, a woman asked a man what was going on. The man told the woman that “it’s all going to come out soon, all will know about it soon,” according to the report.
∫ Someone asks for a ride to Alpena. The same incident included a person who heard a noise and turned around and saw someone standing and also saw a backpack or suitcase. During the same incident, someone produced a pistol and pointed it at a person’s head, ordering the person to not look and to drive them to another location. Few specifics of that incident could be determined from the heavily blacked-out pages of the police report.
In October, Kinsey pleaded guilty to lying to a police officer after the Attorney General’s Office said he gave false testimony about where he picked up Srebnik and Wirgau on an unspecified date.
Originally scheduled for Tuesday, Kinsey’s sentencing was postponed to a date to be decided by the court. Kinsey’s attorney said both sides need more time to determine how many days’ jail credit Kinsey has earned before going forward with sentencing.
A charge of perjury while under an investigative subpoena for a life-offense crime — which could have netted Kinsey a sentence of up to life in prison — was dismissed as part of his plea agreement.
Julie Riddle can be reached at 989-358-5693, firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @jriddleX.
Check out the police records obtained by The News through Michigan’s Freedom of Information Act below.
Kinsey Michigan State Police Reports by Julie Riddle on Scribd