Could a talkative African Grey parrot end up being a key witness in a murder case?
A 45 year-old Michigan man, named Martin Duram, was shot and killed inside his home in May of 2015. His wife, Glenna Duram, also suffered a gunshot wound. (This is the incident where cops presumed she was dead — only to find she was still alive an hour later.) Investigators think she may have been the shooter, and then tried to shoot herself in the head in a murder-suicide. Last week, she was charged with first-degree murder in connection with her husband’s death.
The man’s ex-wife, Christine Keller, believes the bird was a witness to the crime, and now the bird won’t stop talking about it. (Keller now has custody of the parrot.) Keller thinks that the bird, named “Bud”, is repeating the argument he overheard between Martin and Glenna. (Bird experts say this is a possiblity.) She has videotaped the bird while he is talking. In the video he says the words “Don’t %*&@ing shoot.” Keller thinks the bird may be mimicking Martin’s final words. She is urging the prosecutor to admit Bud’s dialogue as evidence.
The prosecutor is now looking into whether the video of “Bud” saying those words could be admissible in court. It’s unlikely the bird would be called to the witness stand. The prosecutor may have to somehow prove that the bird never spoke those words prior to this incident.
Glenna Duram is being held without bond in the Newaygo County Jail.
Here is an unedited video of “Bud” repeating what sounds like a fight between two people and then the words “Don’t %*&@ing shoot!” Listen for yourself. (WARNING: The bird has a pretty foul mouth. This is not a video you want to watch at work or with others in the room…you’ve been warned!)
And yes, there are several “bird” jokes that could easily have been written into this post…however we are talking about a murder and a loss of life here…so I refrained. I’m sure you can conjure up your own jokes if you so desire.
Photo credit: Peter Fuchs
I have an African grey parrot and she is absolutely unreal…She is only 10 years old and she answers my questions that I ask…Those parrots are unbelievable, they are so smart. My vet told me that they have the intelligence of a 5 yr old child and if socialized right they learn words and will actually respond back to a person…I have experienced that first hand with mine. Thanks for the story Scott…they had better listen to that bird…he may tell the whole story. : )