Police records reveal patterns that link Quinn James to Kalamazoo, teenager's death

Quinn Anthony James, right, has been a person of interest in the death of Mujey Dumbuya since shortly after the Grand Rapids teen's body was found in Kalamazoo. (WWMT)

Kalamazoo, strangulation and assaults against women are recurrent themes in the life of Quinn Anthony James, according to court documents filed in advance of his trial on murder and kidnapping charges.

James, 43, is being held in a Kent County jail as he awaits trials on rape and murder in the assault and later killing of a 16-year-old Grand Rapids girl whose body was dumped in the woods near north Prairie Avenue in Kalamazoo. The teen, Mujey Dumbaya, was found strangled to death just weeks before she was scheduled to testify against James in the rape trial.

Long before James was charged in either of those cases, he was repeatedly at odds with law enforcement agencies, evidenced by a series of police reports detailing accusations of kidnapping, car theft, threats both verbal and physical – and arrests in both Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids. Through a Freedom of Information request, Newschannel 3 obtained 16 police reports involving James since 2011. Now, in case files in Kent County Circuit Court, prosecutors have compiled a history of those reports, including additional ones from before 2011. That history is expected to be introduced as evidence in his murder trial.

Investigators said the police reports document a pattern of behavior and sexual violence that aligns with the circumstances surrounding Dumbaya’s death. They've also said that they have electronic data, including cell phone records that place James in Kalamazoo.

In those court documents, Assistant Kent County Prosecutor Kellee Koncki said the evidence demonstrates that James had “a compelling motive to murder the victim (Mujey Dumbuya) because she was also the victim of a pending CSC case against the defendant and he communicated to multiple people he was not going to prison again.”

Though a resident of Grand Rapids, James, according to multiple sources, spent a part of his childhood living in the Kalamazoo area, where he had family. However, for about 20 years, until 2011, he lived in prison. James was serving time on convictions of armed robbery in 1991 and later two counts of attempted prisoner possession of weapons.

Threatened with a hammer

Before James went to prison, on Sept. 21, 1989, police reports in both Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo detail an incident involving the attempted abduction of a young woman in Grand Rapids, and the arrest of a suspect in Kalamazoo who was found in her stolen car.

According to those reports, the suspect threatened the young woman with a hammer, robbed her, and attempted to sexually assault her. The suspect eventually took the car, and drove it to Kalamazoo where three days later he was arrested.

The suspect was identified, in both reports, as Quinn Anthony James.

Threatened with a tire iron

Two years later, on Oct. 14, 1990, a young woman in Grand Rapids was threatened with a tire iron as her attacker robbed her, then ordered her to move over in the car. Instead, she jumped out.

Her attacker, later identified as Quinn Anthony James, drove her vehicle to Kalamazoo. The car was found by authorities, who tracked down James and took him to trial.

A jury found James guilty of armed robbery. He was sent to prison.

The next series of police reports were filed after James is released from prison.

Threatened with bleach

On June 26, 2014, an 18-year-old woman was sexually assaulted by an acquaintance who threatened to douse her in bleach. He also put his hands around her throat and tightened his grip. He told her a friend would help him kill her. She believed him and at first does not tell police. Eventually, she reveals the story of her attack to police and names her acquaintance: Quinn Anthony James. At least one witness corroborates the details.

James is arrested and charged - with criminal sexual conduct in the third degree and assault with intent to do great bodily harm.

The charges are pending against James in Kent County Circuit Court.

Strangled in public

Two years later, on April 17, 2016, a 20-year-old woman is on a public street with a male acquaintance in Kalamazoo. There are neighbors nearby, watching, when in broad daylight he puts his hands on her throat and squeezes.

The incident is detailed in Kalamazoo police records, with witness statements from four people.

Sexually assaulted

From July 20 to Sept. 23, 2017, a 16-year-old student becomes acquainted with an older man who was employed by her school district as a maintenance and grounds worker. She eventually tells authorities that he forced her to have sex on multiple occasions during that time, in Wyoming, in Grand Rapids and in Kentwood.

Her accusations are later corroborated by her teenage boyfriend, Daquarius Bibbs, who happens to be the nephew of a woman engaged to be married to the grounds worker. Bibbs spent the summer living with the engaged couple. He was present, he said in court, when at least some of the assaults occurred.

That grounds worker was Quinn Anthony James.

James is charged with multiple counts of criminal sexual conduct in the third degree. The case in spending in Kent County Circuit Court.

Strangled before family

During that same summer, the teenage nephew told investigators, he was present on at least one occasion to witness James’ behavior toward another woman. This time, it was a Bibb’s aunt, James’ fiancé.

Detailing the incident under oath in Kent County District Court, the nephew said James grabbed his aunt and began strangling her. When the nephew tried to stop him, James turned his aggression from the woman to the teen, strangling and verbally threatening him.

Bibbs said he feared James. He described his aunt’s fiancé - Quinn Anthony James - as “creepy.”

Multiple partners on video

In March 2018, during the same court hearing in which Dibbs revealed the details of assaults on his aunt and his girlfriend, detectives from the Grand Rapids Police Department revealed additional evidence regarding James’ sexual activities.

On James’ electronic devices, detectives found a series of videos, about 50 of them, showing James having sex with women. The videos showed the location of the activity as the back of the black SUV, a Ford Expedition, that James drove, and where, Bibbs testified, his girlfriend was assaulted.

The Kent County Prosecutor’s Office claims that those records reveal that James has knowledge of the Kalamazoo area. The records also show, prosecutors said, that he had a “common scheme or plan in disposing of evidence and/or fleeing to that area [Kalamazoo] when he commits serious crimes involving CSC or attempted CSC.”

A trial date has not been set.

Follow Rachel Glaser on Facebook and on Twitter.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off