Convicted Felon Gets a Sweet Deal on a Harley, Rides Off Into Sunset

Categories: Crime-iny

Courtesy of Doyle Davison
Have you seen this Harley?
On June 1, 2010 Huntington Beach resident Doyle Davison stood outside an empty, bank-owned Garden Grove home. Its former owner was Barbara Clearwater, ex-wife of a Garden Grove city firefighter. Davison was searching for his 2005 Harley motorcycle, which he says was stolen from him weeks earlier by Clearwater's boyfriend, a multiple-times felon named Ken McCormick.

A real estate broker by trade, Davison began searching for the bike on his own after Huntington Beach police said there was little they could do to find the machine.

In March of that year, Davison advertised the bike on Craigslist for $16,500. He says McCormick responded to the ad and the two struck up a friendship. Davison foolishly allowed McCormick to insure the bike and test drive it multiple times. On May 8th, McCormick and Clearwater rolled up to Davison's home. McCormick said he was ready to buy, but he wanted to take the bike for another test spin with Clearwater. Davison said he would sign the title over once he'd gotten the money. McCormick rode off, never to return.

Courtesy of Doyle Davison

Standing outside the foreclosed Garden Grove home, where neighbors tell the Weekly Clearwater lived with her daughter and LAPD son-in-law, Davison didn't think he'd be finding the bike anytime soon. He was wrong.

Pulling the Harley's spare key and fob from his pocket, Davison clicked the button. A light blinked in the garage--his Harley's headlamp. Davison, with title in hand, called police. An officer named Gary Coulter responded and called McCormick's cell phone. McCormick and Clearwater agreed to come to the foreclosed home, where police asked the couple to open the garage door.

Davison expected his bike to be returned on the spot, but after Officer Coulter interviewed McCormick and Clearwater, Davison says he was ordered to leave the property. When he protested, Davison says Officer Coulter threatened to arrest him.

"He followed me in his police car to make sure I left," says Davison adding that he hasn't seen McCormick or the Harley since.

Three years later, Davison's just as angry at Garden Grove police as he is at McCormick. A Garden Grove detective didn't return a call seeking comment, but Huntington Beach Police Spokesman Lt. Mitch O'Brien tells the Weekly the case was complicated by the fact that Davison and McCormick had an established relationship. When interviewed by police, McCormick showed proof of insurance and told officers he loaned Davison $4,000 toward the cost of the bike (Davison denies receiving such a loan).

"When you got a guy saying 'I bought this motorcycle, and here's all the emails,' ...that's a contract," says Lt. O'Brien. "Whether he's lying or not, we do our best to figure out if there's an agreement."

Had police accessed Orange County Family Court records, they might have thought twice about McCormick's story.

In 2005, the county slapped him with 17 counts of contempt for failure to pay child support. In September of 2010, McCormick asked the court to modify his payment plan saying he'd lost all income and his disability had run out.

Records show McCormick also had multiple felony convictions throughout the 1990s including receiving stolen property, unlawfully taking a vehicle and perjury.

Following the incident with Garden Grove police, Davison returned to Huntington Beach where detectives eventually charged McCormick with unlawful taking of a vehicle (the District Attorney declined to pursue the case.)

"I'd be surprised if McCormick was convicted of anything," says Lt. O'Brien. "It's no different than a bank saying you owe them money. We don't arrest people for that. It [requires] a civil remedy."

Davison sees it differently. He suspects Garden Grove cops gave McCormick favorable treatment because of his girlfriend's ties to the city and law enforcement.

"[The police are] crooks. How can they give my property away like that?" he asks.

Multiple attempts to reach Clearwater were unsuccessful. The Weekly did manage to contact Ken McCormick, but he hung up at the first mention of the word "Harley."

Follow Brandon Ferguson on Twitter @FeralFerguson Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!

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18usc241 topcommenter

The Garden Grove, CA police department - ground zero of police sponsored domestic terrorism since before 9/11 courtesy Stan Knee and two generations of lemming leaders.

And they are award winners as well.

paullucas714 topcommenter

Cops lying and doing shady shit and not doing their job? No way?!!


@paullucas714, It's way deeper than you would imagine. This foreclosed home in Garden Grove was being used for only one reason: Ken McCormick and Barbara Clearwater were conducting multiple counts of Insurance Fraud, Grand Theft and needed an inconspicuous place to hide all their stolen items. Unfortunately, this garage was almost the perfect place to hide all your electronics, stolen motorcycles and even a Mercedes which the bank had been trying to located for almost 2 years and Officer Coulter new this as it's in his reporting. This couple were very professional con-artist, pretty elusive as they used P.O. Boxes and out of state Nevada license Plates on their vehicles as a cover-up, they used neighbors to store items, had storage lots and used this foreclosed home for some of their crimes.  

When Coulter arrived at the home from my 911 call, he proceeded to call Ken and Barbara down. I didn't realize this until later, but when Ken and Barbara pulled up to the property Coulter acted as though they were friends and he knew them. There is another problem, Ken did not even have a drivers license so everything should have been immediately impounded off this call.

Why is this officer Coulter allowing Felons with 24k in back child support and no license and no job to be driving around on our streets committing numerous crimes.

Is it not reasonable to think a 911 call for Grand Theft at a foreclosed home a Cop would have "ALL GUNS DRAWN", etc. Not hand shakes and hugs.

While officer Coulter asks me stay next door while the three of them all go have a nice chat inside the garage and exchange stories. Coulter noted multiple stories from them but this did not raise any questions.

Remember, Ken and Barbara told the Huntington Beach Police Department earlier that "We returned Doyle Davison's bike to him." and noted that their stories kept changing. Coulter was well aware my bike was listed in the system as STOLEN and that they told HBPD they did not have the bike and it's in his report.

It's also very interesting to note that Coulter does not spell Barbara's Clearwater's name correctly in his reporting so not to bring awareness that there were police officers and Chief of Fire that lived at that home where these crimes are being committed by felons and even went to high school together.

So the officer Coulter comes over to me with this..

First, are you in some sort of business with them, "NO".

Secondly, do you owe them any money, "NO". 

Officer Coulter.. then what about these emails Ken and Barbara have, well, Coulter these are are just friendly emails between us, not any agreements or contracts officer. How can let's walk the dogs today be a contract. Officer Coulter is now getting very upset and within inches of my face and starts yelling at me "You should be ashamed of being a Christian". and... say another word and you are going to jail. But, I have not shown you my paperwork or title... as the officer forces me to my vehicle and follows me.

The next morning after my police escort home, I returned to the Garden Grove home, everything had been removed overnight, garage was now completely empty and my bike was gone.....crime scene was completely cleaned up within hours.... by who..

Now it all makes sense...Barbara Clearwater doing the name game..

... My husband is a Garden Grove Fire Chief, and my son-in-Law is a Los Angeles Police officer that used to live here,  you and my son in law went to Loara high school together.

I spoke personally meet with Mr. Collin Brennan who confirmed he is with Anaheim police Department and he said, "Yea, I remember speaking with Officer Coulter, that was a long time ago, I can not give you any more info. except that Ken McCormick is a complete scumbag. I need to call Anaheim Police now"... this just proved one point,  there was absolutely no reason why Coulter should have spoken to officer Brennan.

I emailed Coulter case findings from private investigator and messages but he refused to comment to anyone.

I spoke to his commanding officer Sgt. McIver who gave me an earful stating "it's not our problem". and " go back to where you came from."  and "Everybody gets ripped off, we have all been ripped off, get a life before you have a heart attack." "and the best comment from McIver... "It's been how long ago" thinking this crime would just go away...

I don't remember this on Garden Grove's mission statement.

paullucas714 topcommenter

@doyledavison @paullucas714 

Doyle I can sympathize with your situation. But you are preaching to the choir when it comes to Police misconduct and or corruption.

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