Summarized by Kent Larsen
Misread License Plate Puts LDS Man in Jail
Wichita KS Eagle (Knight Ridder) 23Jan00 D2
Knight Ridder News Service
Father of driver doesn't know why his son was with a drug smuggler driving across Kansas.
COLBY, KANSAS -- A police officer in Colby, Kansas misread the license
plate on a car driven by LDS church member Justin E. DeBusk of Katy,
Texas. When the misread plate didn't match the car, Officer Scott Sitton
pulled the rental car over, and in the process discovered that DeBusk's
passenger was a wanted drug dealer, who promptly shot and killed
When Sitton's misread license plate didn't match the car, he took a
second look. The nervous behavior of the driver and passenger led him to
stop the Ford Tarus at about 9 p.m. on January 14th. After verifying
DeBusk's license and discovering that he wasn't wanted, Sitton noticed
that DeBusk was shaking, and decided to ask more questions. The
questions led him to ask DeBusk to open the car's trunk, and discover a
locked duffel bag that DeBusk said belonged to his passenger.
The passenger, Robert Henry Golding, 43, then tried to pull a gun on the
officer. Sitton shoved Golding against the car, and Golding shot himself
in the head. The officer raced back to his car and radioed for help.
Golding was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Now DeBusk has been booked into Thomas County jail, charged with aiding
a felon. The duffel bag was later found to contain $3.7 million in cash,
the largest cash seizure in Kansas history. It is believed to be related
to a seizure of nearly $6 million in Fort Collins, Colorado earlier that
His father, Fred De Busk of Huntington Beach, California speculates that
Justin was recruited to travel with Golding because of his build; 6 feet
6 inches and 240 pounds. He says his son worked selling spray-on pickup
bed liners, but often made money dealing with various goods on the side,
"He was always dabbling with something -- buy something for 10 and sell
it for 20. But I never suspected anything like this."
Fred De Busk says his son was raised to be a good member of the LDS
Church, "We realize that we can train our children, but we can't dictate
their lives," he said.