From Pendragon to a Secret Space Program

Jo Ann and Mark Richards of the Earth Defense Headquarters (EDH) present a story that reaches back generations. Mark Richards is serving a life sentence without parole for the murder of Richard Baldwin, a crime that became known as the "Pendragon" murder. Years after the crime, he again came to public attention with claims to have been a captain in a secret space program who led an attack against aliens to reclaim a secret base at Dulce, New Mexico. He cited a remarkable family history that includes numerous covert activities affecting global interests and top level alien contact.

The claims made by Richards have been told on youtube videos, blogs, podcasts, web sites, MUFON meetings and conferences. Mark has been interviewed several times by Kerry Cassidy (Project Camelot). Indeed, Cassidy calls Richards a "classic case of the government framing someone who they feel may be turning against them from within the military." That alone would warrant our attention if it were true.

Ultimately, the story challenges fundamental notions of history, science, and culture. Carl Sagan once observed that extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. Certainly we should not accept an extraordinary claim on face value and require that it be proven to the fullest extent. As former MUFON director James Carrion warned, "Make sure that you check their source. Make sure you check every single fact. You better be a fact checker, because if you're not a fact checker, you're gonna be at the recipient end of disinformation, hoaxes and just being led down the primrose path that a lot of ufologists find themselves." (The UFO Trail, "James Carrion to Podcasters: Deception Inherent to Ufology.")

Most of Mark's claims are simply assertions. Were Werner Von Braun and Disney cloned? (Cassidy, Second interview.) Does Val Thor really come from Venus, which is said to be a great place in 65 other dimensions apart from our own? Do the reptilians back ISIS and meet in grottos under the Vatican? (Cassidy, Third Interview). Was there really a 1952 "ambassadorial visit by Prince Nagadraconis, whose reptilian species was from Earth" at Hamilton AFB in Marin County, California? (2009 conference notes, cited below).

The focus of this article is therefore on Mark himself. Although it is up to Richards to prove his claims, we can check parts of the story that can be confirmed and look at some of the things that have been ignored by Cassidy and others. Therefore, we start from the beginning with his family history.

ELLIS RICHARDS, SR. / BERT SPARKS TAYLOR

We are first introduced to Mark’s grandfather, Ellis Richards, Sr. The 2009 conference notes state:

Ellis Loyd Richards, Sr., was a brilliant electronics engineer, and authored books on the subject. He worked with Tesla and on the Manhattan Project and the Philadelphia Experiment. He was a superintendent of Coyne Electrical Institute. He was also a leading expert in the early push for space flight. He worked at several think-tanks that conducted ‘underground’ research for the US. He invented the Richards Anti-Matter (RAM) Drive in the late '30s. 

Mr. Richards was a general superintendent at Coyne Electrical School (now called Coyne College). The college specialized in practical training in electrical systems. His duties, as assistant to the school president, appear to have kept him busy during the time that he is now said to be working on secret projects. (See Buckley v. Coyne Elect. School [describing role of Richards,relating to that case].)

Richards wrote Diesel Engines and Diesel Electric Power, "a complete practical book of instruction on diesel engines, their construction, principles, operation, care and adjustment." (Chicago, F.J. Drake & Co.,1939.) No other title is listed in the world catalog of libraries (Melvyl). His affiliations included associations related to electrical maintenance and refrigeration. 

The public record therefore indicates that Richards’s work was directed toward practical applications. He obtained no patents. There is no nothing to indicate that he was a leading expert on space flight or worked with Tesla. He died in Illinois several months before the Philadelphia Experiment was said to be conducted. It might be argued that if he was inventing anti-matter drives, then his work would have been kept secret, but much of the work of Tesla and other researchers is well known. Thomas Townsend Brown's research on anti-gravity, for instance, was very public and he obtained a number of patents.  In contrast, the EDH claims about Mr. Richards stand alone.  

It should also be noted that various claims are made regarding Mark Richards's maternal grandfather, Bert Sparks Taylor:

Taylor was involved]in the construction of an advanced airship, powered by Tesla’s electric engines. The airship was seen in late 1896 and early 1897 from California to the Midwestern United States. He was one of Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders in the Spanish American War, and one of the original "Men in Black." He also managed to be in England and Germany in the early 1900s when there had been mysterious airship sightings. He was friendly with Tesla for many years. Bert was murdered in 1929, The secret airship plans were passed down in Bert’s family to Mark’s mother and then to Mark.

This site has found no independent information concerning Taylor. The EDH offers no documentation to support this story.  He is not listed in the roster of the Rough Riders.  Although there were numerous reports of mysterious airships in 1896-1897, nothing links those sightings to Taylor. Several patents for airships were filed during this period, but none attributed to Taylor. The airships have been linked to various phenomenon and hoaxes, so if the plans were given to Mark, the EDH could provide a valuable historical service and make them available for evaluation. As the Beatles sang, "We would love to see the plan."   

Even assuming that the Men in Black exists, their first reported appearance was in 1947 and they are usually regarded as being sinister or part of a strange phenomenon. The assertion that Taylor is an original member is somewhat surprising, especially in light of claims that the MIB attacked Mark in 1962 (see below).

ELLIS RICHARDS, JR


Ellis Richards, Jr., Mark's father, is referred to in the EDH's Dulce Report as the “infamous Dutchman” who was involved in any number of top level intelligence projects. The claims involving Ellis are too numerous to fully list here. As a young man, it is said that he worked with Tesla - who trained him in his secrets of electronics and time travel - and tested the Death Ray. It is stated that he was an accomplished pilot who became a Major.  He spoke several languages and had degrees in business and law. The 2009 conference notes state that he “was the first man to pilot the RAND atomic rocket of the late '40s, German disc-craft and captured alien saucers.” He was a high level intelligence officer who took part in Operation Highjump in Antarctica (1947); met with aliens; fought in Pakistan (1959) against the same threats as today; served 12 months off-world; and helped the Dalai Lama escape China in 1960, keeping in correspondence with him over the years. It is claimed that Ellis was the intelligence officer who met with aliens at Holloman Air Force Base in 1964. ("Knights of the Cold War," linked below.)

Ellis Richards is said to have been one of the important figures in the 1961 "Exeter Interstellar Treaty Conference" in England. He brought his family on this trip, which included visits with Peter Ustinov, Ian Fleming, Douglas Fairbanks, Aristotle Onassis, and dinner at Buckingham Palace. Lady Jane helped take care of the children and they soul-traveled through dimensional gates. The conference itself brought together some of the top figures from this world and others. Various factions tried to advance their own agendas. Ellis provided valuable insight and worked with Admiral Nimitz to try to stop all further human abductions. Other species argued that humans should surrender the planet. (Knights of the Cold War.) 

Mark's mother is also said to have "gone shopping in London with Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret - both incognito – on more than one occasion." The one time that Elizabeth and Margret left the palace incognito was not simply to do shopping, but perhaps the story became the basis for Mark's tale.  Mark goes on to claim that the Richards family attended royal events and had tea with the Queen Mother. Ellis was only a captain at time (1961) but was allegedly well known to a number of high ranking people, from Churchill to Admiral Mountbatten. (Knights of the Cold War.) 

According to the EDH, Ellis was part of a "fighter Mafia" group at Hamilton AFB who flew for International Security and Majestic-12. Although Majestic-12 is regarded by most researchers as a hoax, Richards maintains that the group piloted flying saucers built by AVRO in Canada. (Knights of the Cold War.) In actuality, two disc-shaped craft were built by AVRO, but the project was a failure. The craft never flew faster than 35mph and destabilized above three feet.

Ellis is said to have been one of the co-founders of the National Reconnaissance Office and was involved with many of its projects for 20 years. He was the military intelligence liaison to President Kennedy, as well as his personal friend. Ellis is said to have "officially retired" from the air force in 1966, but continued to work in various operations as a frontline fighter pilot until he took over as head of International Security after the death of Admiral Nimitz, working out of Marin County. (Dulce Report.) 

As such, Ellis is reported to have directed many operations and covert battles. The USS Hornet was his command ship during the 1976 "Battle of China Gates" against aliens in space. The major ordered a 1979 fight to take control of underground operations from aliens at Dulce, New Mexico.

James Casbolt (whose credibility or lack thereof is beyond the scope of this article) states that Ellis Richards was assassinated in 1997. Jo Ann Richards suggests that Ellis may have been poisoned. (Cassidy Interview, 2012.) Veterans Death Records simply indicate that he died of natural causes.

Military records available online (National Archive, WWII Enlistments) document that Ellis joined the Army Air Corps in 1942 as a private. At the time, he had a high school education and electrical manufacturing skills. He became an aviation cadet. Veterans records indicate that he retired from the Army in 1966. According to the conference notes, his "cover" was that of a procurement officer.

It has been noted that both Ellis and Mark Richards are enshrined in the Wall of Honor at the National Air and Space Museum. The wall includes anyone who chooses to honor themselves or another, without requiring documentation, as long as a financial contribution is made to the museum. No special credence can be ascribed to this.

There is no doubt that Ellis Richards was a pilot in the early stages of his career.  Aviation records list him as being involved with four accidents between 1943 and 1952 - the latter seriously injured Ellis and left him partially paralyzed.  In a 1984 letter to the trial court, family friends described Ellis as being "severely handicapped."  His physical health after the accident is not consistent with the claim that Ellis was in his prime and the dramatic stories of his exploits. (California Magazine, Jan. 1983, "Medieval Murder in Marin," linked below [describing Ellis as frail and disabled as a result of the latter plane crash]; Reno Gazette, Aug. 2,1982, Interview with the Richards Family [Richards retired after disabling injuries].)

The National Reconnaissance Office does not mention Ellis Richards as either a co-founder or "pioneer." The Kennedy Library lists military advisors and assistants who worked with the president. Major Richards is not listed. Presumably, there would be some record of his service.There is also no documentation to show that he was a close friend of either President Kennedy or the Dalai Lama. His family should have personal items, a private photograph or correspondence, that could be released to verify these claims.

Jo Ann Richards also states that both Mark and Ellis Richards were part of the USAF Space Command. (Cassidy Interview, 2012; EDH Dulce Report.) The Command was not activated until 1982, after the events in question.  

There is no record of the Hornet being used after it was decommissioned in 1970 and mothballed at Puget Sound. (Navy History.) It is beyond reason that a ship like this - with all of its size, a large crew, and its history - could have been moved from the mothball fleet without documents or attention.  

It can be asked if a retired major (a field grade rank compared to middle management) would have been given command of the earth’s defense after Admiral Nimitz died; if the head of international security would have worked in Marin County - it's not exactly a work-from-home type of job; if an “infamous” character known as the “Dutchman” with various public roles would have escaped attention; why his name is not mentioned with many of events that have been reported; and, why there is no other corroboration for the claims involving more public activity.

The EDH claims a long lineage for the Richards family. A 1996 EDH "Ancestor and Genealogy Report" lists various sources, including the Scottish crown, "blood of the Czar" and Pocahontas. (EDH Report List.) Jo Ann states that the Richards are "blooded and would still be titled had the family not left Germany. They are members of the German/Dutch House of Nassau/Orange whose family tree is said to wind back to the Norse God Odin and the House of David. They are distantly related to many of the royal families in Europe." (Knights of the Cold War.). It is not certain where the Richards family might lie in the royal family tree, which reaches back to the 10th century rather than Odin.[1] 

It is claimed that "a number of sources" state that Mark's father was the youngest member of the Knight's Templar in the 20th Century and turned down many offers of knighthood.  Mark states that "men like Father lived with a different set of rules." Mark describes Ellis as a "Germanic prince ready to ride with the heroes of Valhalla, at Odin’s side, against any and all evil." While there are obvious factual problems with these undocumented claims, perhaps they are more important for the way that they shed light upon Mark and the events in his life that led to his arrest and conviction. 

MARK RICHARDS AND THE PENDRAGON MURDER

The primary source for the EDH information is Mark Richards. Mark is now serving a sentence of life without parole in the California state prisons.  The story of the crime and the events around his trial are interesting, but it is his "other life" that first draws our attention.  There are too many clams to list all here.

In 1957, Mark was with Captain Gordon Cooper at Edwards AFB and spotted a UFO. Cooper filmed the object and Ellis took the film to Washington. (Conference Notes.)

His ties were not limited to aliens or space adventures. Mark states that his father was good friends with Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. Mark danced with Bacall at a Mark Hopkins event when he was five or six.  (Cassidy, Third Interview.)

After President Kennedy's 1961 speech committing the Unted States to put a man on the moon, he and his father met the President in his limousine. Kennedy asked Mark to deliver a top secret message to Charles de Gaulle. Mark was just seven-years old, but Kennedy is said to have trusted him. (Knights of the Cold War.)

Mark met aliens at various times growing up, including a 9 foot reptilian prince who was at the 1961 conference. In 1962, “Mark and his babysitter were attacked by human and non-human [Men in Black], engaging Mark in a fierce gun battle with the enemy. He held his own, defending himself and his babysitter who’d been immobilized by a sonic weapon, until his Father and his men could come to his aid."

Jo Ann cites many accomplishments:

He won national and international titles in fencing, swimming, judo, auto racing, boat racing, shooting bows and guns, building design, writing, education, and social work. He has degrees in history, political science, quantum physics, and education. He was a Rhodes Scholar and has letters from Oxford. Professionally, he has been a history instructor, filmmaker, a teacher, a contractor, and a publisher. He is a prolific writer, and has several books and articles published.

Richards is not listed in the database of Rhodes Scholars. This claim is clearly false, and no documentation is offered to support most of his other accomplishments, such as a degree in quantum physics. Undoubtedly, he graduated from Dominican College with a history degree. Mark tried to make a film and appears to be a prolific writer, judging by the EDH reports. Mark was an unlicensed contractor at the time of the crime. (Photo: Richards pictured in 1976.)

Richards, 1976
California magazine wrote that Mark was a "charismatic storyteller." It was reported that after meeting Baldwin, Mark said that he had piloted the Goodyear blimp and filmed television shows. There seemed to be little he did not know. Mark told people that was working to design electric cars for the future. He claimed some of Baldwin's work for his own. Notably, Mark said nothing about having served in Vietnam. (See California Magazine, "Medieval Murder in Marin.")

Part of this became intwined with a darker side. According to one person who knew Richards from childhood, Mark always had "bigger than life" tales about various adventures - from car racing to serving as a bodyguard to a Colombia "businessman." He "borrowed" money to try to produce his screenplay and narrowly avoided arrest for other matters. He described Mark as a "skunk." At trial, a witness who was a former business partner described him as having a "silver forked tongue."

At the very least, Richards would have had to be in two places at once if he accomplished everything he lists as well as being an active military officer.

Mark claims the rank of Captain. Jo Ann describes him as being a "retired US Navy Captain." (Dragonhill Books.) She has also stated that Mark has an active commission. (Super Soldier Talk, interview, Nov. 2018.) Jo Ann maintains that even as a teen, Mark served as an officer in the armed forces of the United States. 


Mark began his military career as a teenager. At the age of 13, he was on active duty in the Navy due to his high security clearance and participated in several training courses. While in high school he was working on a top-secret project at Lockheed and was also a consultant in Vietnam. Mark joined the army after high school, and was a lieutenant during the Vietnam War flying helicopters. In 1973, he went to Chile pretending to be just a student while acting as a courier for his father.  Unfortunately, he got caught up in the fighting as the military coup occurred. In April 1975, Mark was involved with the evacuation of Saigon.





To assert that Richards was on active duty at the age of 13 stretches all credibility. 

Mark graduated from high school in 1972 and attended Dominican College after that. In 1973, Mark was arrested for insurance fraud while walking to one of his classes.  Although the charge was dismissed with the help of his attorney, Carl Shapiro, it demonstrates that Mark was going to classes during the time that he now claims to have been a lieutenant.

As a student, Mark got excellent grades and was active in school affairs. He worked on the school paper, participated in the Model United Nations, and was active in sports. He met his future wife, Caryn, there. He graduated in 1976. A letter in the court clerk's transcript (obtained by Kevin Moore) states that Mark housesat for a professor during the latter's extended summer trips, both before and after graduation, leaving him even less time for a covert life. (See California Magazine, "Medieval Murder in Marin"; Reno Gazette, Aug. 2,1982, Interview with the Richards Family.)

The problems with the timeline are made clear by Jo Ann's insistence that Mark got his first degree after being in Vietnam. (Super Solder Interview, Nov. 2018.) Since Mark attended Dominican College after high school and graduated in 1976, he could not have served in the military as Jo Ann now claims. 

It is not certain when Mark would have switched from being an officer in the Army to the Navy.  Transferring from one branch to another is not like being traded to a different major league team. It is a rare and complicated process that can take years. There would be no reason why the EDH could not substantiate this claim with copies of the paperwork.

Jo Ann states that as a Navy officer, Mark served with the Air Force Special Operations. (Super Soldier interview, Nov. 2018.) The Air Force Special Operations Command is limited to Air Force personnel and the command was not activated until 1983, after Mark's arrest.

In any event, there is no record of Mark being in the military and EDH has provided no documentation to support either his service or his ability to fly helicopters or any other aircraft. It is another case of stolen valor that reflects upon the credibility of any statement made by Mark.[3]


Mark states that his most active period as a space captain was from 1976-1982. During this period, Mark allegedly flew various craft, including the SR-71 and alien ships, as well as operating naval vessels. He interacted with at least seven alien species. Among the vessels he is said to have commanded was one of nine Orion-class "atomic battle cruisers," whose designers included a claimed relative of Mark's mother. He is said to have served off-planet, taken part in several important space battles with aliens, such as the battle of China Gates, described in a report linked below. Richards also claims to have headed "Operation Moon Dust" which was charged with retrieval of alien crashes. (2009 Conference Notes; Knights of the Cold War; Cassidy Interview, 2012)

There is no doubt that Mark was busy with other projects closer to home. News reports documented that in 1976, while majoring in history, Mark tried to produce a screen play that was based upon the romantic ventures of Tristan in 6th Century England. Richards had written a paper about Tristan while he was in college. He announced that James Doohan ("Scotty" from Star Trek) had agreed to be in the film, and that the castle-like buildings of the San Francisco Theological Seminary in San Anselmo would be used. It never got off the ground.

The Seminary also played a role in "Futurecastle." As the Marin Independent Journal reported, in 1977 Mark tried to start a school for future studies there and dreamed of having William Shatner and George Lucas on faculty. It was to offer "innovative academic community dedicated to the origins of a new renaissance." Mark borrowed money from his parents to rent a hall but apparently never contacted the celebrities. The plan fell through when he could not pay the rent.

Mark told people he published Seriatim: The Journal of Ecotopia. Although Mark later had a falling out with the company he did edit the transportion section and sold ads.  Before Mark married, he decided to find more solid work. Eventually, he and a longtime friend formed a partnership, Engineering Constructors, to remodel houses.  

In August,1979, Mark was married in Marin County. This is the same month that Mark states that he was injured in a "command roll of Dragon Squadron." (Dulce Report.) Presumably, this was in the Battle of Vesta where he met the cat-people and commanded a battle cruiser in space as part an alliance to defeat enemy aliens. Mark almost died when his ship was ambushed by the "Trog insect-like species." (Knights of the Cold War; EDH,"The Battle of Vesta, August 1979.") Soon after Mark was wounded during the Dulce battle. He was a busy man if he is to be believed.[3]

His story of the underground battle at Dulce, NM, was one of the first claims to gain attention. Mark maintains that under his father's command, he led a 1979 assault that retook a secret base from aliens who had violated a treaty and had abducted humans for experimentation. Ross Perot funded the mission and various others from Marin County are named as being among those who participated in it (none of whom are still alive). The EDH has released a report on the mission that claims to have been prepared for the Joint Chiefs of Staff in 2001, but nothing confirms any part of his story.

According to Kerry Cassidy (Third Interview) by 1982:

"[Mark]had lost one child and what he said was a great love of his to the Secret Space Program by that time, and he was very fed up and tired, and very exhausted, and he wanted to resign from the Secret Space Program. It appears though that they did not want him to, and this is part of the reason he was framed in this murder charge that he was not involved in."

There is no record to document the personal loss Mark claimed. He had, after all, married his college sweetheart after a long and romantic courtship. 

Richards faced financial difficulties as his business was failing. He is reported to have promised his customers more than he could deliver and used unskilled teenagers to complete projects. Engineering Constructors dissolved in 1981 and a check Mark wrote to his former partner bounced. The economic pressures mounted on virtually every aspect of Richards's life. (California Magazine, "Medieval Murder in Marin." )  

Mark was 29 years old on July 6, 1982, when Richard Baldwin was murdered. Most of the public record concerning Richards has to do with this event, which became famous as the Pendragon killing. The information below is drawn from news sources and the published court opinions.  

Mark is currently a political prisoner in the California State Prison system.  He was arrested in 1982 and convicted in 1984 of a murder he had nothing to do with.  It’s a convenient way for the government to keep him quiet, as he knows way too many secrets and would fight against the New World Order with all his might if given the chance.

Richard Baldwin was Mark's good friend. Lois Richards described Baldwin as Mark's "best friend". Baldwin had a business restoring classic cars from a garage on Front Street in San Rafael, just a short distance from the Grateful Dead's Club Front Studio (something that had nothing to do with the crime but brought Shakedown Street to mind). Richards met Baldwin when he established a business next door. Baldwin double-dated with Mark, Caryn, and her twin sister. He served as an usher at Mark's wedding and chauffeured the couple after the ceremony. 

In one adventure, Mark claimed that Seriatim owed him money.  Mark, Baldwin, and a friend went to the magazine office and took a number of things that Mark considered to be his.  After that, the magazine stopped publishing.  (California Magazine, "Medieval Murder in Marin."

At the time of the murder Mark was doing contracting work at Baldwin's house. Baldwin was known to have cash, guns, and marijuana. The prosecution presented testimony that Mark first approached two employees about killing Baldwin, stating that he needed money fast. When that did not work out, he convinced two other teens that he employed - Crossan Hoover and Andrew Campbell - to rob and kill Baldwin.

Crossan was part of a group of teens who met with Mark regularly to discuss Pendragon, a plot to take over Marin and turn it into an Arthurian kingdom called Pendragon. Richards would be the king, his group would be knights and hold titles such as counts, earls, or dukes. The theological seminary was to be the headquarters; prisoners would be released from San Quentin, laser weapons would defend the area from Angel Island and Mount Tamalpais. Richards claimed that George Lucas was helping to fund the plan. Richards printed a Pendragon newsletter, took the group to critical locations and began to collect weapons. Teens took the plans seriously and testified that the plan was real. One member left the group when Mark became "too weird." In particular, the prosecutor alleged that Richards used the plan to manipulate Hoover to carry out his directives. 
Hoover believed in Pendragon and the promise that he would be "Duke of Angel Island."

Richards also accused Baldwin of being a Nazi, a pedophile, and rapist. He told Crossan that "it would be a service to the public to get rid of such a menace." These accusations enraged Crossan against Baldwin. (Hoover v. Carey.) Mark acknowledged to investigators that he knew Hoover was sensitive against "perverts and homosexuals" and used that to "jerk up" Crossan against Baldwin. Mark stated that he did not know for certain whether Baldwin was gay or bisexual. (See Interview, discussed below.)

Andrew testified that he was in Baldwin's house to carry out a theft while Richards and Hoover met with Baldwin at his garage to look at his classic cars. Upon a prearranged signal from Mark, Hoover committed murder. The killing took place while Andrew was searching Baldwin's house. Mark told him that the murder had been “bloody” and that he wanted to get things out of the house quickly. The three took a small safe, cash, guns, and marijuana from Baldwin's house. That same day, Mark bought a boat with proceeds from the crime, which was used to dump Baldwin's body. A security guard questioned Mark when the group arrived at the marina, but let them pass. The group disposed of the body in the bay after a series of misadventures on the water. Richards did not return home until 3:00 a.m.

Both Mark's wife at the time and a former employee were surprised when Mark bought the boat, gifts of jewelry, and video equipment because of his financial problems.  

Baldwin's body was found a week after the murder when it floated to the surface. Hoover began to talk about the crime. The investigators received a tip that named Richards as being involved with the killing. The group was arrested three days later as they left Mark's house in his pickup truck. Cable and plastic sheeting were found in the truck that matched what was used to dispose of the body. Richards used Baldwin's checks and credit cards to go on a spending spree. Items associated with Baldwin - including guns stolen from the victim - were found in Mark's possession. Mark's fingerprints were found on forged checks belonging to Baldwin and a credit application that he had filled out under Baldwin's name. Witnesses reported seeing a drilled-out safe in Mark's garage after the murder was committed.

Hoover gave a lengthy statement to the investigators recounting Mark's involvement in the crime and admitting his own actions. In a separate four hour interview (obtained by Kevin Moore), Richards told the investigators that Baldwin had hit his head in Mark's boat while they were together.  He stated that Baldwin was his friend. Mark maintained that he had used Baldwin's credit cards with his consent, as a way for Baldwin to start to pay off a debt. When the detectives accused Mark of lying, he acknowledged his financial problems and admitted to having taken items from Baldwin's house after the crime. He said that he helped to cover up the killing, but blamed the killing on the teens. 

At trial, Mark was represented by two highly respected attorneys, among the best in the region if not the state (Carl Shapiro and Dennis Riordan). The defense attacked the prosecutor's chronology and Andrew's credibility, who testified against Richards under a grant of immunity. They argued that although Richards participated in an attempted coverup of Baldwin's murder, he had done so only out of misguided loyalty to his employees. Shapiro contended that Andrew, not Mark, should have been on trial for murder.

The defense contended that the Pendragon material was simply part of a fantasy book. Mark's former wife stated that he was working on a book - Imperial Marin. Another witness testified that Mark had been working on the book for years. Mark contended that he never intended to take over the county but used the teens as sounding boards for his novel.[4]

Mark's attorneys dismissed the importance of Pendragon: "Mark's role-model was King Arthur. Pendragon was the dream of a young man who wanted to be King Arthur. Is that evidence of a crime? He has a creative imagination."  

The jury deliberated four days before convicting Mark of first degree murder. Mark was stunned, believing he would only be convicted of being an accessory after the fact for helping dispose of the body.  After the verdict was announced, he whispered that he had not done the crime, but others saw it differently. At least one of the jurors stated that Pendragon did not factor into their decision and that there was more than enough evidence apart from Campbell's testimony to justify their verdict. The trial court found that there was "overwhelming" evidence to support the verdict. Although the jurors found that the special circumstances were true, the prosecutor had not sought the death penalty.  Mark was sentenced to life without parole.

Crossan Hoover was tried after Mark. He was described as a very disturbed individual with serious psychological problems, but the prosecution emphasized that Mark had promised him very real things: money from the crime, a car, a place to live. The prosector acknowledged that Richards manipulated Crossan, but there was testimony that Hoover knew right from wrong. The jury rejected an insanity defense.

The length of the deliberations in the Richards case indicates that the verdict was a close one. Yet, there was no question that Mark was involved with the crime – the only issue at trial was whether he was the mastermind or an accessory who tried to cover up the crime. There is a substantial difference between the two in legal terms, but neither one squares with Mark's claim of having been a high level operative. The type of character, skills, knowledge, and connections that the latter would possess is at odds with the events surrounding the Baldwin murder. At the very least, his defense at the time is not consistent with the current claim that he had nothing to do with the crime.  

Jo Ann and Kerry maintain that Mark was off-planet at the time of the crime. That alibi rests again upon Mark's credibility.  However, if it were true, why does all the physical evidence - from the items belonging to Baldwin in Mark's possession to the boat that Mark purchased the same day of the murder to dispose of Baldwin's body - establish that he was very much a part of the events on earth? Caryn testified about when Mark left the house and when he returned after the murder. He clearly was not gong off-planet.  

Newspapers and magazines at the time were very interested in learning about Richards and investigated his background. There was no suggestion that he had lived a double life or that there had been unexplained absences in keeping with his alleged role as a captain. No one even hinted that a Mark had flown helicopters during the evacuation from Vietnam, which could have been raised in mitigation. There was nothing to indicate any further academic achievements after Mark graduated from college. The court record does not show anything that might be consistent with Mark's claims.

Mark Richards is now said to be a political prisoner who was framed to keep him quiet or prevent him from fighting against the New World Order. It is surprising that his father and the various high level contacts
 could not do a better job of protecting him or rally to his defense. Would honorable people that were named as participating in the Dulce operation - including an astronaut-scientist, an insurance agent, and his father - remain silent while Mark was framed?  If Mark was left to present an unconvincing alibi on his own because of secrecy concerns, surely others could have informed investigators that he was on a mission involving national security.  If the Secret Space Program did not want Mark to resign and participated in framing Mark to keep him quiet, would that make his father, who headed earth security, part of that operation? If the goal was to keep Mark quiet, that clearly has not worked.  

Mark's revelations about current events present a further question. In 2018, he claimed to Kerry Cassidy that California's forest fires covered up a battle with alien forces. One has to wonder how he knew this from prison, gven that it could not have been from personal knowledge. If he is to be believed, someone would have had to commit a major security breach to keep him informed about space battles. A personal (rather than a legal) visit has no guarantee of confidentiality. At the very least, it would require approval and be logged. Mail or phones would be subject to monitoring. Either way, it is unlikely that anyone involved in a secret program would risk contact with Richards. Mark maintains that he reports to a secret part of the military, but why would a life prisoner be reporting to anyone other than writers or podcasters?[5]



At this point, the only source of information for the claims regarding the Richards family is Mark and Jo Ann. Some find that it has "the ring of truth," but it also can be said that "the more incredible the lie the more people will believe it." (As attributed to Bob Lazar.) Mark apparently tells Kerry Cassidy what she wants to hear - "a validation of most of what I have been given or know" from her work with Project Camelot. (Cassidy, First Interview.) However, when claims are based entirely upon personal credibility, then it is important to measure that credibility and to request documentation to support the parts of the story that could be corroborated.

The EDH fails to substantiate any claim and we know that numerous statements are disproven. They could easily document that Mark was a military officer, has "degrees from Dominican University, McGill University, and USC in history, political science, education, English, and quantum physics" and was a Rhodes Scholar.[6] (Knights of the Cold War; Dragonhill Books.) Family correspondence or photographs could be released to support claims, such as those made regarding friendship with the Dalai Lama, Kennedy, or Bogart. Yet all we have is Mark's stories. Or perhaps his looks, as Kerry Cassidy stated: "He comes from a Germanic-English background. He has blue eyes and light skin and looks fairly Germanic. He was definitely a high-ranking officer in the Secret Space Program." (Cassidy, First Interview.) 

Without proof that goes beyond this, there is no reason to regard Richards as anything but just another prisoner with a bent toward fantasy and science fiction.  

OTHER INFORMATION

All quotes in blocks are from the EDH unless otherwise noted.  

There are numerous videos and internet radio programs that present the basic story, as well as information from Richards.   

Richard Baldwin: A Murder in Camelot: The official site of the upcoming documentary by Kevin Moore. The site features court records and news articles about the murder.  Moore has been very thorough in documenting the story and interviewing important witnesses. His trailer demonstrates how important the final video will be.

Knights of the Cold War: An account of the many claims relating to the Richards family, This appears to repeat the material in the 2009 Conference Notes. The characterization of the Ellis family as "knights" is interesting in light of how Mark was alleged to have regarded himself and his workers before the Baldwin murder.

EDH Dulce Report: Edited EDH Information. It is claimed that the Report was written for the Joint Chiefs of Staff and presented to them in 2001. If the Chiefs did not know about the Secret Space Program, they do now.  If they knew about these events, and let Mark take the fall, the report served no purpose.

China GatesRichards and Naga fighting together to defeat an interdimensional invasion force. 

Dulce Commentary: Branton accuses Richards of spreading disinformation. There are other things in play here - including
whether there is any underlying information to "disinform" about - but he noted a few of the problems that are discussed in this article. A claim is made that the EDH copied material from other sources.   

Project Camelot / Kerry Cassidy First Interview, 2013.  Much of the discussion centers around the Dulce events, but some family history is presented. There also was some discussion about why Richards may have been "framed." In 2017, Cassidy stated that she was attacked by dark forces with a "scaler weapon" in part to prevent another interview. As of October, 2018, she has conducted nine interviews. The excellent blog, The Emoluments of Mars, critiqued the latter interview.


Problems with Mark Richards SSP Testimony: A discussion at Project Avalon, including information about Richard Baldwin and some of the back story with Kevin Moore.

Simon Parkes released a video (Oct. 29, 2018) claiming that Mark might receive a presidential pardon or that a machination in the prison system could result in Mark's release in 2019. Since Mark is a state prisoner who is outside of the power of a president to pardon, any action would be worth less than what the paper weighs. (See U.S. Const., art. 2, sec. 2, cl. 1.) As to Parkes's vague references to something within the prison system, a prison must enforce the underlying sentence and cannot release someone on its own terms. Again, if he was referring to federal contacts, this makes no sense.

Legal Documents

The California Court of Appeal case (No. A02B291) upholding the judgment against Richards was not published.

Richards v. Superior Court:
Decision on a pretrial 1983 appellate writ filed by Richards to dismiss special circumstances, summarizing evidence presented at the preliminary hearing.    

People v. Crossan Hoover: The original California appellate decision summarizing the facts from the record in that case, referring to Richards's role in the murder.

Hoover v. Carey: A federal magistrate overturned Hoover's conviction. This decision was then reversed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal, which found that the state court had reasonably concluded that errors were harmless. (Unpublished Order.)

Of interest is the magistrate's findings: "Hoover believed he was obliged to kill Baldwin out of loyalty to Richards and his duty as a believer in the Pendragon cult."  The court emphasized that Hoover's mental state was compromised "by the influence of Richards and the Pendragon fantasy over him." He became attached "to a manipulative cult leader promising escape from a world of disillusionment." The court noted that the psychological experts "spoke of Richards' controlling influence over Hoover — his manipulation of Hoover's rage."

Articles Pertaining to Richards and the Pendragon Case

In addition to the news articles linked directly on this page.

California Magazine, "Medieval Murder in Marin," Jan. 1983. Pretrial article on Richards, Baldwin, Hoover, and the events of the time.  Scanned by Kevin Moore.

Murderpedia : Article on Crossan Hoover, using the story cited below.
Murder in Camelot: The original article used by Murderpedia. It may be the most complete account of the trial that was ever published.  

One of the more interesting gems is that the prosecution unsuccessfully moved for Mark's bail to be revoked after a woman Mark dated stated that he had a gun. Richards introduced himself to Linda, telling her he was a South American consular official. He introduced his mother, Lois, as an aunt and told Linda that his father was dead. He said that a cousin named Mark Richards was in trouble with the law and that he needed a gun for "political reasons." Lois testified that "Francois," the name Mark used, was a nickname. Richards took the stand and admitted that what Linda said was true, but that the gun was in the glove compartment of the car, which he had borrowed from his father without knowing that it was there. When the prosecutor asked about his political reasons, Mark said, "I see this trial as political. You and [the detective] are trying to save your necks from a bad bust."  

Does this incident take on new meaning in light of what was later claimed?

Given the story at the time, and what has since been stated, it is somewhat surprising that a book has not been written.  There seems to be ample material.

NOTES:

[1]. Remarkably, Mark makes no claims about his father's sister, Gwendolyn 

[2]. Although the time frame for Mark's documented activities, including school and work, make his claims to a military career virtually impossible, this site submitted a request to the National Archives based on Mark's date of birth and claimed service record - all the information in the EDH reports plus the birthdate. The social security number was not available for obvious reasons but all other data was provided that would have enabled the Archives to locate Mark's records. No records could be found.

The EDH is again requested to provide documentation to support its claims.

[3]. Jo Ann states that Ellis called Mark soon after his wedding and ordered him to battle. (Super Soldier Talk interview, Nov. 2018.) Presumably Caryn would have noticed Mark's absence and injuries. Jo Ann lists three former astronauts who participated in the Vesta battle under Mark's command - as with other claims Mark has made, none of whom are still alive.

[4]. The story in Imperial Marin takes place long after Marin grew "from a revolutionary cause to the most powerful Empire in recorded history." Since the events establishing the empire had already happened for the purposes of his novel, Mark does not explain why he needed to meet with teens to tell them about how Pendragon could be established.

[5] Similarly, Jo Ann maintains that even from prison Mark is on the highest levels of the Republican National Committee. (Super Soldier interview, Nov. 2018.) That need not be addressed, except to note that it explains so much.  

[6]. Mark's academic claims are subject to the same kind of problem as his military record. Mark's only documented higher education is his 1976 degree in history from Dominican College - which was not yet a "university."  His claim to be a Rhodes Scholar is disproven, as discussed above. Indeed, if Mark's role as a space captain is believed, it makes his numerous degrees all the more impossible since the times would have to overlap with his active military service.  In any event, there is simply no way that Richards could have obtained additional degrees from USC, McGill, or Oxford in light of the record of his life established at the time of the crime.  Indeed, none of the named schools list "quantum physics" as a specific degree.

In Jo Ann's "Super Soldier Interview" (Nov. 2018), she offers a somewhat different story. According to her, Mark has double bachelor and double masters degrees.  He obtained a doctorate in political science, almost a doctorate in quantum physics, and is working on a masters in astrophysics. 

Mark could have obtained an associate or bachelor's degree through a prison education program. Neither USC or McGill offer degrees that are available to prisoners.
No prison education program offers advance degrees in sciences. It would not be possible to earn a graduate degree - or even "almost" a degree depending on the story - in quantum physics or astrophysics from an accredited university while incarcerated. (See Degrees of FreedomStanford Criminal Justice Center, 2015 [appendix listing available educational programs].)

The claimed accomplishments would have been relevant to Mark's sentencing at trial but were not mentioned at that time.  Academic degrees could easily be substantiated now. The EDH is requested to provide documentation to support its claims.

Contact This Site.   

Click on the link (section title) or email skymatters2012 (at) gmail.com.   Questions, comments, further information, or supporting documentation from Kerry Cassidy or Jo Ann and Mark Richards (EDH) are welcome.
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