Tecumseh, MI

Billy Little, Jr. Remains Determined to Get Justice for Dee Ann Warner, Missing Michigan Mom

Tracy Stengel

Photo byParker Hardy

Dee Ann Warner, Tecumseh, Michigan resident, planned to tell her husband, Dale Warner, she wanted a divorce. On the evening of April 24, 2021, her friend picked up their nine-year-old for a sleepover to shield the child from any unpleasantness. The next day, Dee vanished, and her four adult children reported her missing.

After 11 months, the case seemed to stall, and Dee’s family was losing faith in local law enforcement. Their hopes were buoyed when nationally recognized investigative attorney, Billy Little, Jr., took on the case pro bono in March 2022. “I have spent hundreds of hours interviewing witnesses and analyzing documents,” Little said. “I don’t jump to conclusions. I only look at the facts.”

Little turned his findings over to Lenawee County Sheriff’s Office and continued to dig up evidence which showed Dale Warner is responsible for Dee’s disappearance. When the local authorities didn’t take action, Little was an integral part of getting the case turned over to Michigan State Police (MSP) in August 2022.

As Little continued his investigation, he uncovered numerous financial crimes committed by Dale Warner, with the help of Mark Weisberg, an accountant and felon convicted of embezzlement. A civil complaint, filed by the Successor Conservator of Dee’s estate and his attorney, charges Warner and Weisberg with 12 separate counts of business crimes. The court date is yet to be determined.

As the two-year anniversary of Dee’s disappearance approaches, concerned citizens are still waiting for an arrest. Many people are asking if Little is still on the case.

This morning, Little told me, “I’m never going anywhere. I knew this was going to be a marathon and prepared for it. That is why I set in motion the declaration of death and the civil suits that are going on now. I’m still involved in the strategy.”

When asked why he hasn’t made any recent statements or public broadcasts, Little said, “It wasn’t supposed to be a giant public event. When I got involved, my goal was to find out what happened to Dee. Once I had evidence she did not disappear willingly, my goal became to get the person or persons responsible arrested. It only gained media attention when law enforcement and leadership refused to do their job.”

Little continued, “I work on a lot of important cases, and some are high profile cases. You don’t see my face on the news unless I need to turn the heat up and get people to do their jobs. Ninety-nine percent of the work I do is behind the scenes, and I like it that way. This case is about Dee Warner, not about me. I’m just trying to help a family find some peace and help the community get some justice. I love this family. They are great people.”

Little shares Dee’s family’s frustration that there hasn’t been an arrest. “The evidence is overwhelming. If I need to take a leadership role and lead the community through this, I’ll do it. I’ll do it either as the prosecutor or head of the Sheriff’s Department. If I need to, I will. I’d be more than happy to just sit back and let the process work — but it’s not working. That’s the problem. It hasn’t for two years.”

Little vowed from the beginning he would see Dee’s case through to the end and isn’t wavering. He said, “I’m never getting off this case. Never. So, if Dale Warner or Mark Weisberg think I am going to go away, it’s never going to happen. When they get sentenced for either financial crimes or for murder, I’m going to be sitting in that courtroom. When Dale gets arrested, I will definitely do a broadcast with Chris McDonough in The Interview Room, and I’ll be smoking a cigar.”

For background on Dee Warner’s disappearance, you can start here or join the Justice for Dee Facebook page for all the latest updates.

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Tracy explores the world with a positive eye, an open heart, and a sprinkling of humor. Without laughter, she would be lost.

Onsted, MI

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