Grand Rapids minister and gospel singer Marvin Sapp is not a suspect in the disappearance of Dr. Teleka Patrick, Kalamazoo County investigators said Wednesday.
“He is nothing more than an innocent victim of stalking,” Kalamazoo County Sheriff Richard Fuller said about Sapp.
He added Sapp has “fully cooperated” with the police investigation into Patrick’s disappearance.
Patrick, 30, a first-year medical resident with the Western Michigan University School of Medicine, has not been seen since around 8 p.m. Dec. 5, when she drove out of parking lot at the Borgess Medical Center, where she worked that day.
Fuller and Detective Sgt. William Sparrow of the sheriff’s office updated reporters Wednesday about their investigation into the disappearance.
In recent weeks, media reports have focused on the discovery that Patrick had a romantic obsession with Sapp, which she detailed at length on her Twitter accounts. Sapp took out a personal protection order against Patrick on Sept. 17.
There has been widespread public speculation on blogs and among online commenters linking Sapp to Patrick’s disappearance.
“He is not a suspect,” Fuller said at the press conference.
After the press conference, Sparrow was asked if he thought Sapp was connected in any way to the disappearance.
“No,” he said.”There is nothing to indicate he had anything to do with this.”
In fact, investigators said, while people who spoke with Patrick on Dec. 5 in the hours before her disappearance noticed she was “acting strange,” she never mentioned Sapp’s name.
Sapp, 46, a widower with three teenage children, is pastor of Lighthouse Full Life Center Church in Grand Rapids. A church official said Wednesday that Sapp had no comment about the case or the press conference.
Click here to read more.
WATCH: Private Investigator says Dr. Teleka Patrick Told her Mother to Look at Marvin Sapp’s Church if Anything Happened to Her; Some Members are Upset the Church has Not Done More to Help Find Her
New developments in the search for missing Kalamazoo Doctor Teleka Patrick.
It’s now been three months since Patrick was last seen.
The 33-year-old was in the middle of a psychiatric residency at Borgess Hospital when she mysteriously vanished.
She was last seen on surveillance video leaving the hospital.
Her car was later found along I-94 in Porter, Indiana.
Wednesday, we talked with Teleka’s family and the private investigator about new tips in the case.
Private Investigator Jim Carlin tells us a few weeks before Teleka’s disappearance, on two separate occasions, Teleka told her mother she had seen Marvin Sapp’s body guards walking around the Gull Run Apartment Complex where she lived.
“She also told her mom, and Mrs. Patrick talks about this often, if anything happens to me you got to look at that church. It’s pretty profound,” said Carlin.
Teleka’s sister, Tenesha Patrick told us by phone Wednesday she’s getting discouraged by the lack of leads, but remains hopeful she is still alive.
“I fear that she has met harm or danger. We remain encouraged as a family that in the midst of it all, God is there and he is with her and he knows where she is,” said Tenesha Patrick.
Carlin tells us Pastor Marvin Sapp deserves a closer look in connection to the disappearance of Teleka Patrick, even though the Kalamazoo County Sheriff said during a press conference that Sapp was just a victim of stalking and nothing more.
Carlin tells us he’s received several anonymous calls from people in Sapp’s congregation upset the church has not done more to help find Teleka.
“They take the position, and have told the congregation they just refuse to talk about it, so many people consider that odd,” said Carlin.
What’s also odd, says Carlin, is several phone calls he’s received from people in the U.K. and Jamaica, claiming that God sent them a message about Teleka’s whereabouts, all of them pointing back to Sapp’s church.
SOURCE: WWMT / NEWSCHANNEL 3
Three Months Later, Dr. Teleka Patrick is Still Missing; but Hope Remains that she is Alive and Will be Found
A beautiful and bright young doctor suddenly vanishes from Michigan. She’s been missing for three months, and her disappearance has made headlines around the country.
They are haunting images: videos on YouTube made for a mystery lover.
Among the thousands who’ve watched those recordings are countless cops and Battle Creek private investigator Jim Carlin. They are all searching for any clues.
“It’s just as if she vaporized,” Carlin told 7 Action News Investigator Heather Catallo.
What happened to Dr. Teleka Patrick?
It’s a mystery that’s captured America’s attention since the 30-year-old first-year psychiatry resident vanished from Kalamazoo three months ago.
Dr. Patrick’s life seemed to be unraveling on the night of December 5th when she tried to check into a hotel in Kalamazoo – even though she lived nearby. Security cameras show the hotel shuttle bus taking Dr. Patrick back to her car at the hospital where she worked.
911 calls detail what drivers saw within hours along I-94 near Portage Indiana, where they reported seeing Patrick’s 1997 Gold Lexus ES300.
911 Dispatch: “911 what’s the exact location of your emergency?”
Driver: “It’s on I-94 right before mile marker 23, there’s a car off the road, down in the ditch.”
Driver: “There’s a car in the ditch… The lights are on in the car.”
(Hear the calls in the video player above)
The car had a flat tire. Her credit cards and ID were inside.
Teleka Patrick’s car drove about 40 feet off the side of the highway before stopping. Later, a bloodhound tracked her scent directly from where the car stopped to the side of the road. And that’s where the trail goes cold.
“Something caused her to be in distress on that particular night,” said Carlin.
Detectives quickly found many possibilities. As they back-tracked from the car, they found a twisted trail online – and a seemingly tormented life.
There were videos – 20,000 tweets – and questions for two men.
Patrick’s tweets seem to be directed to one man in particular – gospel singer Marvin Sapp.
The Grand Rapids-based pastor got a Personal Protection Order against Dr. Patrick last September.
The 7 Investigators obtained this letter that Sapp’s church sent to Patrick, revoking her membership because of “inappropriate emails and pictures” sent to Pastor Sapp. The letter also alleges Dr. Patrick showed up at Sapp’s home.
“The pastor is nothing more than an innocent victim of an apparent stalking. The sheriff’s office has been in contact with him for quite some time, and he has been thoroughly cooperative,” said Kalamazoo County Sheriff Richard Fuller III.
Sapp did not return calls seeking comment.
Another man that Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s detectives interviewed is Teleka Patrick’s friend, James Arthur Davis. Davis is the last person she texted. Investigators used this search warrant to examine their phone records, and now believe Patrick was on her to way to meet the 43-year-old in St. Louis when her car went off the road. They do not consider him a suspect. Davis did not return our calls seeking comment.
Despite the dead ends, incredibly, there is hope.
“Do you believe she’s still alive,” asked Catallo.
“Yes,” said Carlin. He believes someone picked up Dr. Patrick on the side of I-94.
“Maybe somebody stopped right away. She told them that she was running from somebody, people want to help others,” said Carlin.
Even though many of Dr. Patrick’s tweets have prompted some to question whether the psychiatrist in training is actually suffering from schizophrenia herself, no one knows of an official diagnosis.
“It makes me sad that she may have been struggling and we were not able to help her,” said Tenesha Patrick, Teleka Patrick’s sister.
Tenesha says her big sister would never go three months without contacting her family and she fears the worst.
“She’s not just a topic of speculation and salacious gossip. She is a real loving dear person whose family is longing for her and missing her every day… Put her face – etch it in your memory so that when you see her, if you see her, you will remember and call someone, say something,” said Tenesha Patrick.
“If anyone was driving on I-94 on the night of December 5, 2013 between 8:00 and 10:00 PM — if you saw anyone pick up anyone on the side of the road, if you saw any cars next to each other on the side of the road, particularly near Portage. Just think about maybe, what did you see?”
Teleka Patrick did not have her phone with her when she vanished.
SOURCE: Heather Catallo