2012-01-05 / Scene

Crime Scene returns for third year

BY PHIL FOLEY
810-452-2616  pfoley@mihomepaper.com


The cast of Lapeer County Crime Scene with Byron Konschuh, JJ Graci (left), Lapeer County Prosecutor Byron Konschuh and Samm Graci discuss crime issues effecting Lapeer County residents at Lapeer East High School. The cast of Lapeer County Crime Scene with Byron Konschuh, JJ Graci (left), Lapeer County Prosecutor Byron Konschuh and Samm Graci discuss crime issues effecting Lapeer County residents at Lapeer East High School. LAPEER — When Lapeer County Prosecutor Byron Konschuh went on the air as a guest on 1530 AM WLCO’s Community Chat with JJ and Samm Graci a little more than three years ago he had no idea he’d become a regular Friday fixture on the airwaves.

Konschuh, who has been the county’s prosecutor since 2001 and an attorney with the office for more than two decades, recalled when the Gracis took the show over from Duffy Connolly and John Lindsey, he offered his expertise in legal matters. He said the Gracis had him on Community Chat three or four times and then decided to create Lapeer County Crime Scene with Byron Konschuh Friday mornings.

“They said, ‘Let’s give it a shot and see how long it lasts,” said Konschuh. That was 150 episodes ago. Feb. 20 will mark the beginning of the show’s fourth year on the air.

“We had Byron on a couple of times and we couldn’t get everything done,” said JJ, “So we thought it would be a pretty good fit for him to do his own show.”

Community Chat has been on 1530 AM WLCO Lapeer’s Real Country for seven years. Program Director Dan Foley (no relation) said the show first went on the air with Rick Menzing and then County Press Editor Mark Haney. Foley said the station created the show after meeting Menzing at a community round table.

When Haney left the paper and the show, he was replaced by Dave Sommerville as co-host on Community Chat.

“We’ve had quite a few permutations,” said Foley, adding that JJ and Samm have been the program’s longest running hosts.

“They took the show and ran with it,” noted Konschuh. Now in addition to being heard live on1530 AM radio 11:00 a.m. to noon on Fridays, Lapeer County Crime Scene with Byron Konschuh is rebroadcast on US 103.1 FM at 7 a.m. Sundays and can be seen on Lapeer Charter Cable channel 98 analogue and digital channel 991, as well as online at www.joltnation.com and www.us103.com.

“When we started with the show it was on Mondays and Wednesdays. No it’s on seven days a week,” said JJ.

Recent guests have included: Lt. David Frisch of the Lapeer City Police Department, Chaplain Scott Cox of Forgotten Man Ministries, Judge Linda Davis of Families Against Narcotics and Deputy Mike Gepfrey, now candidate for Sheriff.

The program has provided information regarding scams, recent cases, new laws, crime prevention techniques, school and student safety and current and upcoming events to its listeners. Konschuh said at first he looked forward to each week’s broadcast, then he started to worry what they’d talk about, but now, “I don't worry about it. They’ll find a guest and we’ll have something to talk about.”

“There’s so much going on with scams and things like that,” said JJ, “ that Byron’s got a reservoir of guests that makes it not hard to fill an hour.”

Konschuh said one of his most memorable guests was James Kreger, an Imlay Township man who served 17 years in state prison for the 1991 killing of his own brother in a drunken fight.

“His drug of choice was alcohol,” recalled Konschuh, who successfully prosecuted Kreger for second degree murder in 1992. “He got in fight with his brother and didn’t know he killed him until he woke up in jail.”

Kreger, said Konschuh, spent his last day on parole (Dec. 16) on the air with him discussing the dangers of alcohol abuse. “It’s sort of a selfimposed community service,” he said.

Konschuh, noting that the other five people paroled the same day as Kreger two years ago are all back in prison, called him a success story. He said Kreger now has a CDL and a full-time job and volunteers at area soup kitchens, Love INC and Angel Food Ministries.

He said another interesting guest was Michael Noe, an Almont heroin addict who managed to kick the habit without going to jail. Konschuh said it’s compelling to hear how completely heroin takes over people’s lives.

Konschuh said he still has two dream guests on his list — State Attorney General Bill Schutte and Michigan-born rock great and gun advocate Ted Nugent. “I keep contacting Ted Nugent’s office and they keep telling me he’s hunting,” laughed Konschuh. He said Schutte, who he supported in the last election, “keeps telling me I’m on the list.”

While Community Chat has a set Saturday through Sunday schedule, starting with Castaways Food and Spirits and then move to the Lapeer American Legion, Patches, Calvelli’s, The Farm House and then Applebee’s, Crime Scene moves around. Recent shows have air from locations including Hunter’s Den, Arnold’s Car Wash, the Habitat Restore and Lapeer Area Drug Screening.

Crime Scene, said Konschuh is “going week to week, but he added, “We’ve been doing that three years. I’ll keep doing it as long as they invite me back.”

“I see it lasting as long as Byron wants to do it,” said “I wish there’d come a time when we didn’t have to warn people about scams and such, but I can’t see that happening.”.

Graci said anyone who would like to appear on the show, suggest a topic, provide information or ask a question contact him at lccrimescene@gmail.com. or at 866-533-1530.

You can catch Lapeer County Crime Scene with Byron Konschuh on:
 1530 AM from 11 a.m.-noon Fridays
 US 103.1 FM or online at www.us103.com at 7 a.m. Sundays
 Lapeer Charter Cable channel 98 Analog and digital channel 991
 www.joltnation.com/ crime- scene



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