Prince Edward Maryland Is Sorry

He nearly beat his wife to death, but the Ironwood State Prison resident wants you to donate to his anti-domestic-violence charity

After the false admission given under duress, Prince got more agitated. He began searching through her cell phone and calling numbers attached to male names. He tied her up and punched her so many times that her pale Caucasian face and upper body complexion turned entirely black, purple, brown and red. The pummeling caused severe head swelling that is best described as pumpkin-like. An eardrum was permanently damaged. Muscles in her head were paralyzed.

Off and on for days, he raped and strangled her until she passed out. He fractured her larynx, forever altering her voice. He sliced her with a butcher's knife. He whipped her with a wire coat hanger. Keeping a jar of KY jelly by the bed, he made her beg to be sodomized repeatedly and, after each encounter, immediately forced her to perform oral sex on him, a humiliating demand he mockingly celebrated as "ATM," or "ass to mouth," according to court records.

Refusing to give Valerie access to water, Prince instead urinated in her mouth. He burned her body more than two dozen times, including her vaginal and anal areas. He repeatedly kicked her. He threatened to kill her and her family. He dragged her around by her hair, yanked out clumps with his fists and used scissors to cut off chunks. His beatings filled her eyes with blood. He shoved a hot crack-cocaine pipe into her vagina and singed her clitoris after saying he didn't want another man to enjoy her.

Trauma charts documented for jurors Valerie’s front (above) and backside (below) cuts, bruises and burn marks
Trauma charts documented for jurors Valerie’s front (above) and backside (below) cuts, bruises and burn marks

Just after lunchtime on the fifth day of the attack, an unrecognizable Valerie emerged from unconsciousness. Prince had driven away in her SUV, and she didn't know when he might return. Though she could barely open her mouth because of her injuries, she called 911 to beg Orange County Sheriff's Department (OCSD) deputies to rescue her.

"I need an ambulance," Valerie said. "You need to hurry. Oh, please, God, help me."

* * *

On July 29, Joanne Elizabeth Busch, a Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center nurse who became an actress starring as USS Excelsior Commander Robin Lefler on Star Trek: Hidden Frontier, appeared on Los Angeles radio station KROQ for a 30-minute interview with host Scott Mason. Busch, who bears a striking resemblance to the pre-mutilated Valerie Maryland [no longer her legal name], labeled herself as co-director of West Hollywood-based anti-domestic-violence charities Don't Hit, Quit and Hollywood Helpers, Inc. She said the organizations need millions of dollars in donations to build "time-out resorts" for men on the verge of physically and mentally abusing their wives or girlfriends.

"It's a very unique program," said an upbeat Busch, who advertises her acting services on public websites. "There's nothing like it out there. That's why people have such a hard time getting their head around it. What we want to do is stop the cycle [of domestic violence against women]."

Busch told Mason the initial plan is to use $1.2 million to buy an existing house in Santa Monica (an earlier plan obtained by the Weekly indicated Whittier as the location). The organization will "build a campus around" the house, with trained domestic-violence counselors available 24 hours a day to assist men who believe they are about to snap and want help. Ideally, a troubled man would call 1-800-DONTHIT or 1-800-TIMEOUT and arrange to be shuttled to the resort. "It will have state-of-the-art TVs, sports and food, so it's really an attractive place for a man to want to walk away to," said Busch, who has also called the resorts "man caves."

She continued, "We want to raise awareness that it's okay to talk about [the urge to commit violence], to get help before you do anything—that's the whole goal."

Though Busch touts "positive" praise from U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein and Carl Levin, as well as actors Tom Arnold and Michael Douglas, she urged KROQ listeners to donate $10,000 to launch a Lancaster-based telephone fund-raising operation that would be the first phase of putting time-out resorts "all around the country" within five years. Another goal is to produce "gritty" television commercials that teach men how to navigate through "violent situations."

Said Busch—a part-time Seacret skin care saleswoman and wellness coach, "If this strikes a chord with anybody, feel free to go to the website and donate any amount that you can."

Mason called the plan "a great idea" and asked who would serve on the proposed resort's board of directors.

"My friend Prince and I," said Busch. "We are the board."

* * *

Deputy Gregory Jensen was the first to arrive at Valerie's home after her 911 call. He was shocked. "I feared she was going to die," Jensen told his colleagues. While emergency trauma doctors treated his wife's injuries, Prince fled north on the 5 freeway. He had a phone, beer and a stash of rock cocaine. Using cell-phone-tower activity reports, T-Mobile gave authorities his location near Bakersfield. Still high, Prince led Kern County deputies on a police chase that hit speeds of 120 mph before he crashed near railroad tracks.

OCSD investigators Tracy Morris and Wade Walsvick flew Maryland—who complained that the fist he used to beat his wife was sore and required pain-killing medicine—to Santa Ana and the Orange County Jail. During a voluntary interrogation, the deputies showed him a photograph of Valerie's wounds—a gory image that would make a normal person nauseated. It looked as if her body had been inflated with helium, and then burnt to a crisp. Yet the image didn't faze Maryland.

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