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I post on MIA regularly and will be sharing my comments here as well.
Please read this article and share!
I post on MIA regularly and will be sharing my comments here as well.
LAWSUITS CLAIM TAXPAYERS SUPPORT TORTURE
Medical and legal malpractice complaints were filed November 24, 2014 in the Ohio Court of Claims and November 28, 2014 in the Franklin County Common Pleas Court by the attorney for John J. Rohrer, a 34 year old author and musician who is currently confined at a state psychiatric facility. According to the suits, Rohrer has been confined since September 1, 2009 in state facilities where he has been subjected to assaults and forced drugging – without there first being evidence that he was mentally ill.
Named in the suits are two public defenders, a handful of government psychiatrists, two common pleas court judges and several government agencies, including the former Ohio Department of Mental Health. Rohrer’s attorney, David L. Kastner, states in the complaints that he only discovered earlier this year that the original order confining his client in January, 2010 was not a lawful commitment order because, among other rights violations claimed, it was based on a proceeding in which no evidence was presented.
The complaints state that Rohrer was forcibly injected with Risperdal Consta for more than 3 ½ years although the drug is known to cause irreversible brain damage. The manufacturer of Risperdal has been found in several other multi-million dollar lawsuits around the country, to have been criminally responsible for having fraudulently marketed the drug. The Rohrer suits claim that the forced drugging with Risperdal and other drugs was done without legal or medical justification.
In November, 2011 Ohio voters approved Sec. 1.21 of the Ohio Constitution, which bans health care services by force. The United States is a signatory to a United Nations treaty, the CRPD [Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities] which considers forced drugging to be a form of torture. Federal law also defines psychotropic drugging by force to be a form of torture.
The Rohrer suits attack the former Department of Mental Health, now known as OMHAS, for promoting non-scientific theories to justify excessive drugging of patients and medicare billings. The suits cite published studies and an affidavit from Pulitzer prize-winning science reporter Robert Whitaker, to conclude
“more than half of people studied who continue to take psychotropic drugs as prescribed, will become permanently physically and/or mentally disabled and a burden to taxpayers.”
The 25 studies cited in the suits suggest that patients who reduce their pharmaceutical drug intake fare significantly better than those who take them as prescribed.
The Rohrer suits contain more than 400 paragraphs of allegations, including statements accusing two state hospitals, Twin Valley Behavioral Healthcare and Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare [ABH], of refusing to provide a safe treatment environment, leaving patients prey to assaults by others. ABH has been a named defendant in two other recent lawsuits filed by patients. In 2010 Amy and David McCualsky initiated litigation against ABH for improperly drugging Mrs. McCualsky and then negligently leaving her vulnerable to being raped. The McCualsky matter is going to trial in the Court of Claims in March, 2015. In 2011, attorney Richard V. Zurz filed a complaint in Athens County Common Pleas Court naming ABH and several of its employees in connection with an alleged sexual assault and excessive drugging at ABH. One of the defendants in that case pled guilty to a lesser felony after he was charged with sexual misconduct at ABH.
Unlike the other patients who sued ABH after they left the institution, John Rohrer is still a patient there. According to one of the Free John Rohrer supporters, “we are very concerned about more retaliation while the suit is pending, but his attorney was forced to file it now because of the statute of limitations.” Judge Leonard Holzapfel, one of the named defendants in the Rohrer suit, issued decisions on November 3, 2014 in Ross County Common Pleas Court in which he terminated the forced drugging against Rohrer but declined to order his release from ABH confinement. An appeal is expected.
> Katherine Hine, Sharon Cretsinger and possibly one other guest will be speaking at 3 p.m. Wednesday, October 8, 2014 Eastern Time on Mary Neal’s daytime call-in broadcast at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/humanrightsdemand . The topic is “Forced drugging – is it ever justified?” Those of us who oppose forced drugging will be allowed to speak from 3 p.m. until 4:15 p.m. and those who oppose choice (many of Neal’s listenership) will take the last 45 minutes – until 5 p.m. Katherine Hine will be arguing for the last 5 minutes for rebuttal. It is possible that there will be another show about forced confinement.
> Speakers and guests should call to speak on air at (347) 857-3293. If anyone wants to make sure to have his or her voice heard.
> Among the points that are expected to be made in the broadcast are 10 basic legal reasons that forced drugging in Ohio is unlawful – particularly where forced drugging is ordered as a result of hearings in which no evidence is presented. Most of these grounds apply in other states. Sharon, who is a survivor of psychiatry as well as an MSW with many years of clinical experience within the mental illness system, will address the fact that many if not most people with psychiatric histories are capable of fully recovering without drugging, and that drugging itself can pre-dispose a person to act violently.
> Also to be addressed is the fact that as of this writing, John Rohrer, an Ohio writer and musician, continues to suffer from illegal forced drugging without recourse, because a Ross County, Ohio trial judge refuses to date to address any of the legal grounds that require forced drugging to stop in John’s case. For more information about the Free John Rohrer campaign, and to see John’s writings and hear his music, go to his websites at
> Since John posted the websites about his case, the psychiatrists at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare, Athens, Ohio where he is confined, have arranged for him to be stripped of all internet access, which keeps him from updating those sites. Meanwhile John’s prescriber, Dr. Maida Sierra, continues to violate Ohio law by forcibly drugging John with the deadly neuroleptic drug,Risperdal Consta every two weeks. The Ohio Supreme Court declined to address forced drugging in July, 2014. The forced drugging has gone on now for more than 3 ½ years while Ross County, Ohio trial court judge Leonard Holzapfel, as of this writing, also continues to ignore the December, 2013 forced drugging objections filed by John’s attorneys. In August, 2014 Judge Holzapfel issued a written ruling in which he decided that it was acceptable to lock up citizens without the government first putting on any evidence of the person’s “mental illness”. That decision, and the decision to deprive John of his right to a jury trial, cannot be appealed until Judge Holzapfel makes a final decision about forced drugging and involuntary confinement, as a result of the September, 2014 bench trial John’s attorneys finally managed to obtain.
> A little bit about Mary Neal’s show:
> Mary Neal’s Google+ – https://plus.google.com/u/0/115212823950444967993/posts – Follow me at Twitter @koffietime – http://twitter.com/koffietime – Current, urgent justice issues from a laywoman’s viewpoint at my primary blog http://FreeSpeakBlog.blogspot.com Full list of MaryLovesJustice blogs and radio broadcasts: http://marylovesjustice.blogspot.com/2014/03/marylovesjustice-blogs-and-radio-shows.html email address: MaryLovesJustice@gmail.com (I’m censored, but some emails reach my box). Try to phone me at 678.531.0262. If you receive no response within 48 hours, please email or call again.
> Mary’s primary goal is to get the “mentally ill” out of prisons and into other settings, including AOT, private homes, and mental hospitals. I think she understands that forced drugging is not for everybody. She also believes in the First Amendment. She likes to quote Frederick Douglass who once stated: “POWER concedes nothing without a demand. It never did, and it never will.” She is a family member, not a psychiatric survivor.
> Bios of Katherine Hine and Sharon Cretsinger:
> Katherine Hine is an advocate for the rights of psychiatric patients and is currently involved in the forced drugging/involuntary confinement case of her son, John Rohrer, which is pending in Ross County, Ohio Common Pleas Court, Chillicothe, Ohio. She is an inactive attorney who does not practice law. From 1977 until 2009 she practiced law in Ohio and Oklahoma representing battered women, parents of children abused by the other parent in custody cases, foster parents, citizens charged with petty crime, citizen groups seeking to bring accountability to local government, and others. A former judicial candidate and author, Katherine had a solo practice representing clients in criminal, juvenile, municipal, trial, and appellate courts over the course of some 30 years. She continues to be involved with the Ross County Network for Children, as a board member since 1996, and as its Executive Director since 2005. [http://networkforchildren.wordpress.com/be-a-volunteer/]. She is John Rohrer’s mother.
> Sharon Cretsinger is an activist, writer, social work professor, and psychiatric survivor. She is affiliated with The Mental Patients’ Liberation Alliance and the online broadcast of www.blogtalkradio.com/talkwithtenney, writes for and facilitates demonstrations and other community events as a Hearing Voices Network Facilitator, and is the founder, organizer and director of the Kent Empowerment Center. Sharon has developed multiple education programs on the C/S/X Movement and other topics for presentation in the community and various agencies and professional organizations. Besides her lived experience as a consumer of mental health services, Sharon, who has a master’s in social work, has many years experience as a mental health clinician and supervisor inside the mental illness system.
> Earlier this year, she authored an article on John Rohrer’s confinement at Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare: “Thoughts on psychiatric incarceration when not guilty by reason of insanity: ‘If you don’t agree with your psychiatrist, make yourself at home’, available online at http://www.madinamerica.com/2014/07/thoughts-psychiatric-incarceration-guilty-reason-insanity/. In September, Sharon covered John’s trial in Ross County, and is in the process of writing about it.
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JOHN ROHRER FINALLY GETS A DAY IN COURT AND A CHANCE AT LIBERTY
After almost 5 years of being locked away in state facilities without the state having to put on any evidence first to prove him “mentally ill”, John Rohrer is finally getting to see the Judge. After 3+ years of forced drugging and almost 8 months of having his attorney’s motions for his release ignored, John will be entitled to a public pre-trial hearing at 1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, on July 30, 2014 at the first floor courtroom of the Ross County Courthouse, Chillicothe, Ohio before Judge Leonard Holzapfel.
Judge Holzapfel is not the judge who originally ordered John confined and forcibly drugged on the basis of two hearings in neither one of which was any evidence presented. If Judge Holzapfel decides to correct the constitutional rights violations that happened 4 ½ years ago and only uncovered earlier this year, this could mean John’s immediate unconditional release from Appalachian Behavioral Healthcare, Athens, Ohio where he continues to be tortured with forcible injections of the drug Risperdal Consta. If Judge Holzapfel decides that it is acceptable to conduct “hearings” without any evidence at all, which result in a citizen losing his liberty, he is expected to then decide whether to continue the illegal forced drugging order, and to schedule either a jury trial or a judge trial in September to determine whether John is now “mentally ill” and “subject to hospitalization by court order” according to Ohio law.
All are invited to attend, show their support for justice, and see the legal system in action as it decides the liberty rights of those labeled “mentally ill”. Briefs are being filed in the case by two human rights organizations – the Law Project for Psychiatric Rights, and the International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry. For more information contact Katherine at 614-633-0215. For driving instructions to the courthouse in Chillicothe, Ohio, at the corner of Paint and Main Streets, go to https://www.google.com.uy/ maps/place/Ross+County+ Courthousefirstname.lastname@example.org,-82. 982312,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m6! 1m3!3m2!1s0x88470939e40ba3ef: 0x431d1c35a7f8793e!2sRoss+ County+Courthouse!3m1. To learn more about the case and John’s long-standing efforts to be free, read the pleadings in his habeas corpus and mandamus case, which is captioned State ex rel Rohrer v. Holzapfel, and which is still pending in Ohio Supreme Court Case No. 2014-0268:
Supreme Court of Ohio – Case Number 2014-0268
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