December 22, 2005
I, Robert G. Kearns, Jr., do solemnly swear that this statement of fact and circumstances encompassing my divorce/child custody case docket # (Frederick v. Kearns) case number 96 GN 2139, before the Common Pleas Court of Blair County, PA and its intervener, hereto referred as Blair County Children and Youth Services are true and accurate to the best of my knowledge and belief.
STATEMENT OF FACT AND SURROUNDING EVENTS:
On November 25, 1996, my wife decided to break up our marriage and in doing so removed our then 9 year old daughter (Stephanie Kearns) from our marriage residence and transported her to an undisclosed location. However, I had suspected that Stephanie was lodged at the maternal grandmother's home. Accordingly, I made two efforts by telephone to communicate with my daughter and was denied contact with my wife and Stephanie by the grandmother. Subsequently, my wife disconnected all contact and communication with me and Stephanie for a period of nearly two weeks.
While going through papers, notes and letters left in the marriage residence, I had discovered a poem written by my step daughter that graphically described a daughter being molested by her mother. Carelessly and ignorantly, my sister revealed this poem to her gynecologist. Immediately, the gynecologist informed my sister that she is bound by law to contact child protective authorities. My sister was given the ultimatum to have Stephanie in her office for an examination by 4:00 p.m. that day or CYS would be notified to pull my daughter from the mother's care. Since I had not seen my daughter for nearly two weeks and had no contact with her, I was left with a serious dilemma. After contacting my attorney, Donald Speice, and telling him of my position, he advised I was still within my legal rights to take Stephanie to this doctor's appointment. When my sister and I went to the Calvary Baptist school that afternoon to pick Stephanie up, we were stunned at what we found. Stephanie was traumatized and appeared to be in a lethargic state of shock from what her mother had done to her. When my daughter began to respond to my presence the first words out of her mouth was does my mom know you are here and did you ask her if you can take me.
It wasn't until December 11, 1996, that I was given my first court ordered visitation with Stephanie. The standard every other weekend order. While these short visitation periods with me served to slow Stephanie's emotional deterioration, she began expressing her fears to return home to her mother after her weekend visits with me and the paternal family. She would display her anxiety to return to her mother's residence by hiding in corners of the house, or she would sit on the staircase and punch her fist into the carpeting, and when we were outdoors she would repeatedly kick at the ground pleading with me and my family not to take her back to her mother.
In February 1997, I picked Stephanie up on a Friday night to begin one of my weekend visits, I and my family noticed that Stephanie was missing most of her eyelashes, was showing signs of pulling the hair out of her head, and was missing the hair on her arms. Stephanie then began to tell everyone she met that she wanted to live with me (her dad). Because Stephanie's situation did not change, she began to fall into a deep depression and her emotional health deteriorated further.
Rather than the court making a radical custody visitation adjustment to correct Stephanie's failing emotional health, Ilissa Zimmerman, Esq., Stephanie's appointed guardian ad item, petitioned the court to have psychologist Dr. Nancy D. Baker council Stephanie to help her adjust to a situation that she had grown to hate. While my attorney expressed his objections to Dr. Baker counseling my daughter, Ms. Zimmerman stayed the course. Judge Jolene Kopriva granted Ms. Zimmerman's petition.
Around March 1997, Stephanie's emotions outwardly surfaced verbally when she disclosed to me an incident that took place the night her mother removed her from our home. Stephanie told me that she never wanted to leave that night with her mother. I asked Stephanie if so, why she didn't cry out for help? Stephanie said she couldn't because Jandora (her half-sister) was holding a knife to kill you, if you caught us leaving. Steph said Jandora held her other hand over my mouth so I couldn't yell out to you. Stephanie said she tried to resist her mother taking her away, but her mother grabbed her arms and gouged her fingernails into her skin until her arms bled. She was then dragged to the van. The following day I notified Attorney Speice of Stephanie's disclosure.
Consecutively, in March and April 1997, Dr. Baker had her first intake interview with me and my wife separately before beginning to counsel Stephanie. On my daughter's first counseling appointment with Dr. Baker, I was advised that she referred Stephanie to psychiatrist Richard Hill who maintained an office in Dr. Baker's building. Without ever talking with my daughter, Dr. Baker told me Stephanie needed medicated basing her decision on my wife's perception that Stephanie suffered a lifelong mental illness.
In May 1997, I had taken Stephanie to Dr. Baker for a counseling session. After she finished counseling Stephanie, Ms. Baker called me into her office and began a belligerent verbal attack on me. As I was sitting at her desk Dr. Baker showed me a drawing Stephanie just drew for her that depicted the knife scene event that Stephanie told me about months earlier. It had shown Stephanie being held behind the back door of the house with her half-sister holding a long bladed knife. However, the implications of the drawing didn't alarm Dr. Baker one iota. Instead, she told me that Stephanie has developed an alignment with me that she has never heard or seen before. Dr. Baker said Stephanie just told her that she wanted to live with her daddy. Becoming agitated Dr. Baker jumped down my throat asking me what I did to make Stephanie swing her allegiance towards me. I told Dr. Baker that I never said anything to Stephanie, instead Stephanie just told me that her mother said she will be living with her and she will never get to see me again. I told Dr. Baker that Dr. Hill told my wife at our last meeting that I would never get custody of my daughter because girls belong with their mothers. Dr. Baker insisted that it was me who told Stephanie something to make her want to live with me. Needless to say, Dr. Baker overstepped her boundaries and we got into a heated verbal exchange.
By my first custody hearing on June 23, 1997, my daughter's mental health had deteriorated so dramatically under Dr. Baker's counseling that she had pulled out all her eyelashes, eyebrows, and most of the hair on her head. My daughter's only problem before Dr. Baker's involvement was depression caused by the alienation from the paternal family. Vehemently, my daughter's desires were to return home to live with her father. Driving my daughter into a deeper depression, Dr. Baker deliberately refused to acknowledge my child's problem and was looking hard to place some superfluous blame on me for Stephanie's deterioration.
During my first evidentiary custody hearing on June 23, 1997, Dr. Baker submitted her report , testified for nearly 51\2 hours and blatantly attempted to conceal the knife drawing my daughter drew for her at the counseling session in May, 1997. Accommodating my wife to retain custody of my daughter, Dr. Baker attempted to construct a tranquil and loving home life setting for her. After one short interview with my step daughter, Dr. Baker was able to endorse her as a nice church going girl of high moral values. Attorney Speice then showed Dr. Baker a photograph of my then 17 year old step daughter, exposing her breasts in the home she baby-sat in. He had shown her drawings and poetry of oral sex acts and a molestation poem that my step daughter authored and drew. He asked Dr. Baker if she considered that moral conduct and was she alarmed by anything that she looked at. Dr. Baker said nothing she saw alarmed her and it was moral behavior for 16, 17, and 18 year old girls. To chemically force my daughter's compliance and submission to accept and live with this repulsive situation, Dr. Baker highly recommended to the court that my daughter be medicated by Psychiatrist Richard Hill. Subsequently, she recommended that any visitation between my daughter and I cease. Dr. Baker suggested the suspension should be in effect for years until the drugs had time to work her desired results on Stephanie. Only after years of being medicated and only if Stephanie still desired to see her father, then some visitation could be re-established.
Wearing down by Attorney Speice's extensive cross-examination , Dr. Baker's testimony finally revealed that my daughter loved her daddy more than her mother and she wanted to come home to live with me. At the end of the hearing, I was ordered two things until the next scheduled bearing on July 17th. (1) I was given additional days of visitation with my daughter and (2) a period of two weeks to get a second medical opinion before any court ordered medication would be considered for Stephanie.
On July 2nd, I was to pick Stephanie up at my wife's residence for our first extended visit only to discover a vague note tacked to the door telling me that Stephanie was involved in some emergency. Accordingly, I was advised to contact my lawyer in the morning. Not until 3:00 P.M. July 3rd, did my attorney discover that Stephanie was placed in a mental institution, collusively by Dr. Baker, CYS and my wife. On July 3rd, Judge Jolene Kopriva acted on the fabrications and whims of Dr. Baker, and issued an order to institutionalize my daughter and medicate her if it was deemed necessary. My court ordered second medical opinion was now to be done at the Meadows Psychiatric Center. Ironically, the Meadows was where Dr. Richard Hill had a full time practice and was a director of the facility. Furthermore, the custody hearing disclosed that the Meadows paid the rent to Dr. Nancy Baker for Dr. Hill's office space in her building. A second medical opinion by a Meadows psychiatrist to medicate my daughter or not was in fact no second opinion at all. Dr. Baker knew an independent second medical opinion and psychological reevaluation of my daughter absent her influence would have exposed her for being a fraud, and pathological liar.
This time it was Judge Kopriva who assisted Dr. Baker's irrational moves to institutionalize my daughter and circumvent my opportunity to have a neutral medical opinion done. Judge Kopriva's July 3, 1997 order stated that every effort was made to contact my attorney as well as my daughter's guardian ad litem before incarcerating Stephanie. Supposedly they were unavailable to participate in the crisis. Not being taken in by Judge Kopriva's lie, Attorney Speice wrote a letter to Judge Kopriva asking her to explain exactly what attempts were made to contact him. Judge Kopriva refused to answer his request.
On July 15th, 1997, Stephanie was released from the Meadows heavily medicated with Prozac and Risperidal. Dr. Baker also filed an oral complaint with Blair County Children and Youth services accusing me of severely emotionally abusing my daughter. Accordingly, Dr. Baker requested that all my visitation and contact with Stephanie be stopped. Not completely accomplishing her goals my every other weekend visitation with Stephanie was restricted and heavily monitored during the 84 day investigation by CYS. I was now required to take Stephanie to Ms. Zimmerman's office on the Sunday evenings of my every other weekend custody exchange. Also, Stephanie was not allowed to see any adult paternal family member that I didn't reside with.
When Dr. Baker caught wind of Mr. Consigilo's decision, she went on a rampage to overturn his custody recommendation. She sent an ex parte letter to my wife's attorney, Darlee Sill, asking him to take some action to stop my visitation with Stephanie. Dr. Baker's actions resulted in one petition being filed by Ms. Zimmerman and another from Mr. Sill. Both requested a judge to overrule Mr. Consiglio's recommendation. Judge Peoples denied the request. This still didn't stop Dr. Baker campaign as she continued to persue Mr. Consiglio to reverse his recommendation, to no avail.
In any case, the already restricted visitation arrangement had just about pushed Stephanie to a mental breakdown. In complete counter distinction to Baker's allegations of me, the CYS investigation netted numerous reports by independent social workers, and psychologists that I did not cause my daughter the mental abuse Dr. Baker accused me of. These reports repetitiously conveyed Stephanie's wishes to live with her father.
During a September 22, 1997, custody hearing, CYS caseworker, Catherine Hoover, testified that the 84 day CYS investigation resulted in no charges of emotional abuse as Dr. Baker reported. After changing the allegations to medical neglect in the middle of the investigation, without notification to me or my attorney, CYS concluded that there was no indication of medical neglect as Dr. Baker reported. This charge was discounted by CYS psychologist Lynn Kagarise. However, Ms. Hoover said there was an indication of indulgence. Attorney Speice asked exactly what is indulgence? Ms. Hoover answered inappropriate parenting. She explained that Stephanie had told CYS that her father had bought her so many toys it filled the second floor of his garage. Attorney Speice asked if CYS had ever been to the father's house to question him or his family members. Ms. Hoover answered no, because we (CYS) didn't think you would allow CYS to talk with Mr. Kearns' family.
Two days after the September 22nd hearing, Attorney Speice had contacted me to tell me that CYS had sent him a letter stating that I was notified at some point during the 84 day investigation that the emotional abuse allegations were changed to medical neglect. Being news to me, I suddenly found myself being indicated by CYS for not providing my daughter Dr. Hill's recommended psychotropic medications.
On October 10,1997, Ilissa Zimmerman, Esq. was called to the witness stand by Attorney Darlee Sill. Ms. Zimmerman gave testimony to her involvement with Stephanie as her guardian ad litem. Ms. Zimmerman gave her view of the emotional and degenerative condition Stephanie was in since her first contact with her in December 1996. Ms. Zimmerman testified that it has always been Stephanie's desire to live with her father.
Attorney Speice cross examined Ms. Zimmerman as to what is causing Stephanie's seemingly irreversible emotional deterioration. Ms. Zimmerman concluded that Stephanie needed to have more contact with her father over and above the every other weekend visits.
Concluding this hearing, Master Consigilo asked Ms. Zimmerman how much additional visitation should I be given with Stephanie, for example, a couple days per week, perhaps? Ms. Zimmerman answered one hour extra per week is enough. Infuriating my wife she argued that I shouldn't have any additional visitation with Stephanie.
On October 20, 1997 Stephanie concluded the evidentiary hearings with her interview before the attorneys and master. The highlights of the interview was Stephanie's unshakable persistence that she wanted to live with her father. Taking the group by surprise Stephanie told Mr. Consiglio that her mother was going to fool all of you.
On January 30, 1998, I received a final order with the custody recommendation from Mr. Consiglio and signed into order Judge Jolene Kopriva. The order granted me my every other weekend visits with Stephanie plus one overnight stay per week. Being totally devastated by the order, I conceded it was a losing battle and decided to give up my fight for custody of Stephanie. I was dejected and decided not to appeal the order. When Attorney Speice reviewed the order with me, he pointed out an endless string of errors in Mr. Consiglio's ruling. That is when I requested Attorney Speice to continue the custody litigation.
Judge Hiram Carpenter became involved with my custody case on or about May 22, 1998, when my attorney filed exceptions to the master's custody ruling. Attorney Speice requested that a de novo hearing before a common pleas court judge be granted to decide custody of Stephanie. (Frederick vs. Kearns--Docket # 96 GN 2139).
On August 28, 1998, we had our first of a series of custody hearings with Dr. Richard Hill being the first and only witness to testify that day. Basically, his testimony indicated that Stephanie had no mental illness but was suffering from the stress of the divorce situation. His opinion of Stephanie's emotional problems differed dramatically to Dr. Baker's opinions of Stephanie. On or about September 15, 1998, Attorney Speice had acquired a copy of that hearing transcript which I had the opportunity to review. I found it to be about 99% accurate according to my recollection of the hearing.
On or about December 12, 1998, I filed a pro se petition requesting that Ilissa Zimmerman, Esq. be dismissed as guardian ad litem. I also asked that Zimmerman be placed under investigation for contributory abuse to her client. My family and I had witnessed on numerous occasions Ms. Zimmerman's unprofessional actions and cruel comments she made to Stephanie caused her severe emotional upheavals. During Ms. Zimmerman's three year tenure as Stephanie's guardian ad litem, she was starting to look more and more like Ms. Frederick's second attorney. Ms. Zimmerman's conduct went beyond the duties of guardian ad litern and was obvious to all concerned that she had aligned herself with Ms. Frederick and was susceptible to her whims and persuasions. The petition was promptly dismissed the following day by Judge Carpenter citing counsel of record.
On February 1, 1999, the custody hearings again resumed with Dr. Nancy Baker, Psychologist Lynn Kagarise, and Psychiatrist Eugene Polmueller taking the witness stand on behalf of the plaintiff mother. On February 2, 1999, Lynn Kagarise, Eugena Barefoot, CYS caseworker Catherine Hoover, and Kay Engelbret of CYS took the stand on behalf of the plaintiff mother.
During the above hearings, Attorney Speice's cross examination of the witnesses brought forth and developed a pattern of conspiracy between Ms. Frederick, Children and Youth Services, Dr. Nancy Baker, Dr. Eugene Polmueller, and Judge Jolene Kopriva to have committed and/or ignored various incidences of judicial, medical, emotional, and physical abuses against my daughter Stephanie and me.
The hearings further revealed that CYS and Dr. Baker had made a conscious and blatantly obsessive effort to destroy my relationship with Stephanie. What appeared as insidious, CYS and Dr. Baker ignored my wife's hateful and abusive conduct towards Stephanie which included the knife point abduction. CYS was so incessant to place the blame of my daughter's emotional deterioration on me they changed allegations of abuse against me in the middle of an ongoing investigation without notification and falsified their reports. To cover it up, they lied on the witness stand. Kay Engelbret testified that in December 1998, CYS, Dr. Baker, and Ms. Frederick secretly had Stephanie medically examined by Dr. Marianne Hanlon to see if I had sexually molested her. Like Ms. Zimmerman and Dr. Baker, CYS was so mesmerized and aligned with my wife they were abetting the mother's abuse of my daughter. CYS testified that in July 1997, they had instructed Ms. Frederick two times to violate the custody order that granted me the extended court ordered visitation with Stephanie. CYS demonstrated through their criminal actions a frightening abuse of power
On February 3, 1999, the custody hearing was put on hold as the attorneys appeared to be negotiating some legal matters. Meanwhile, two witnesses (school teachers), subpoenaed by Ms. Zimmerman, were poised to testify.
By late afternoon, Attorney Speice came to me and offered an equal shared physical and legal custody agreement. Hoping to stop and turn back my daughter's emotional deterioration, I accepted Attorney Speice's proposal with some reservations that my wife (Ms. Frederick) would not stop her well established pattern of making false and frivolous complaints to CYS, Dr. Baker, and Ms. Zimmerman. My attorney assured me that my wife had requested counseling as a stipulation in accepting the agreement. He said, this would stop the complaints. In counter distinction, my wife had taken a couple hours to accept the custody agreement that her attorney believed would be in Stephanie's best interest. In my wife's own admittance she was convinced that she was unduly forced into the agreement. She was so angry with her attorney making the custody agreement, she refused to return to the courthouse on the evening of February 3rd, to consummate the agreement. On February 4th, my wife was still so embittered and discontented with the custody resolution she arrived late at the courthouse, only after the sheriff department was sent out to find her. The parties were then gathered together in Judge Carpenter's courtroom to be read the custody order and work out the visitation schedule.
As I had feared, it was only a matter of weeks following the custody agreement that my wife reinstituted her volley of attacks on me through CYS and Ms. Zimmerman. In spite of the mother's resistance to the shared custody, Stephanie's emotional health made a dramatic recovery for several months following the custody agreement. So much so, school personnel recognized and testified on April 5, 2000, that Stephanie was happy for the first time since entering the public school almost three years earlier. By July 1999, Ms. Frederick made no effort to cooperate in making the agreement work and escalated her attacks on me and Stephanie to the degree that it became intolerable to bear any longer. As far as the counseling went with Jack Murray, my wife ended that when she ran out the door after the fourth session.
A prelude that my wife was again reuniting her allies to destroy the custody agreement had manifested itself through an incident that had occurred in Dr. Marianne Hanlon's office involving Ms. Frederick and Stephanie. It was my custody day and I had taken Steph to a scheduled doctors appointment. Shortly after Ms. Frederick entered the office and had escorted Stephanie into the doctor's examining room as I waited in the lobby. About ten minutes had passed when an upset Stephanie came bursting into the lobby telling me that her mother told Dr. Hanlon she recently tried killing herself with a knife. Following that incident Ilissa Zimmerman wrote Dr. Hanlon a letter asking what my (Mr. Kearns) involvement was that caused the incident. Dr. Hanlon responded to Ms. Zimmerman with a list of Ms. Frederick's complaints against me that were totally unrelated to the office episode.
Realizing I had made a terrible mistake accepting the custody agreement, I believed my only relief and recourse was to revive the custody litigation and/or file civil suits against CYS and several of the doctors involved with Stephanie's mental health treatment. What had become a definable pattern over the last three years, my wife was instigating, promoting, and exaggerating Stephanie's behavioral outbursts toward her and other maternal family members. She would then report these alleged incidents to Dr. Baker, the psychiatrists, and CYS as being a recurrence or worsening of Stephanie's fabricated mental illness.
On or about March 19, 1999, Attorney Speice requested that the court reporters, Christa Miloro and Sally Zeek, produce the transcripts of the February 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, hearings. The court reporters notified my attorney that they could not produce those transcripts immediately because they were too busy and one reporter suffered an injured wrist.
In July 1999, my attorney received the transcripts of the February custody hearings. Upon my review of those transcripts, I discovered the February 2, 1999 transcript had numerous material errors in the transcribed testimony. Since these errors had mysteriously incorporated new dialogue into witnesses' testimony (particularly CYS) it was obvious the alterations were the act of deliberate tampering. From my recollection of the hearings I estimated these transcripts to be about 85% accurate. Accordingly, I brought these discrepancies to Attorney Speice's attention. He reacted by not denying or confirming any discrepancies.
I told my attorney that since the alterations were designed to cover for CYS employees outrageous conduct, it appeared Judge Carpenter was the saboteur. My personal feelings were the court reporters had nothing to gain by tampering with transcripts. Believing I could only get a raw deal by Judge Carpenter if he should he make any rulings of custody in my case, I asked Attorney Speice to reopen the custody hearings and request Mr. Carpenter recuse himself. Attorney Speice asked me what judge would we use as a replacement. I told him an out of county judge. At that point, he tried to make a convincing argument that there are two out of county judges that come to Blair County. One is old and falls asleep during testimony and the other is arrogant and indifferent. The latter demands the litigants to work out their own agreements. Given these options, Attorney Speice suggested that Judge Carpenter was my best chance to gain full custody of my daughter. He said he just couldn't envision Judge Carpenter tampering with testimony.
Because of my attorney's advice combined with hints from third party sources that Judge Jolene Kopriva was already under investigation for her unethical links to Dr. Nancy Baker, I warily proceeded on with my custody case with Judge Carpenter.
On October 18, 1999, I again became the subject of a CYS investigation for allegedly punching my daughter in the ribs. As usual, my wife spearheaded the charge. Again Stephanie was placed under severe emotional strain as CYS caseworkers prodded at her to implicate me (her father) of this phony allegation. This time CYS caseworker, Shannon Kelly, was overheard on October 19th, telling Stephanie that if she felt threatened by her father in any manner she should telephone CYS immediately. The 30 day investigation netted no abuse charges filed by CYS.
On or about October 26, 1999, Attorney Speice filed a petition to modify my custody order. Again my hopes was to gain full custody of my daughter to eradicate my wife's emotional and physical abuse of her. I further believed the constant intrusions by CYS and the regiment of psychologist's and psychiatrist's into my daughter's life was contributory to the absolute destruction of her mental health, childhood, and ultimately her life. In response, a conference was ordered for January 6, 1999. A pre-hearing conference was scheduled for May 9, 2000.
During the time following my petition for custody modification, Stephanie's emotional health began to degenerate at a pace I haven't seen in years. It became apparent to me that my modification petition served to infuriate my wife's wrath even more. CYS was taking advantage of every opportunity. They were now trying to lay the blame on me for causing my daughter's mental regression because I resurrected the custody litigation. During a conversation with Shannon Kelly in October, she confirmed Stephanie was told by her mother that I never wanted her as a baby and wanted to adopt her out. Ms. Kelly discounted this emotional abuse of Stephanie by telling me and my brother that she couldn't believe Stephanie's mother was capable of making a comment like that. Ms. Kelly said Stephanie's mother loved her too much. The truth of the matter was CYS employees' were ignoring anything Ms. Frederick did to Stephanie and in reality was feeding my wife's abusive nature. Adding to Stephanie's problems, CYS was encouraging Ms. Frederick to institutionalize Stephanie to control her emotional outbursts that historically and predominantly were taking place at the mother's residence during her periods of custody.
The catalyst to Stephanie's mental regression manifested itself through CYS caseworkers. CYS caseworker, Shannon Kelly, began a bombardment of intrusions into Stephanie's life. At one point Stephanie had a scratch on her hand made by her cat's claw. My wife told Shannon Kelly it was a knife cut. Ms. Kelly went to the Baker school and pursued Stephanie to admit the scratch was actually a knife wound self inflicted at her father's home. CYS wouldn't let her alone at school and they began to make frequent visits to my home. Stephanie said Ms. Kelly constantly questioned her about Grandma Kearns&rsquo health who was suffering with cancer, with a follow up of how is your dad treating you. Steph became so upset with these questions that she wouldn't answer them anymore. Pretending to be concerned for Stephanie, Ms. Kelly introduced her into a 4H horse program to enhance her social life. While this program did nothing to help her emotions, it turned Stephanie's every waking and sleeping thoughts towards owning horses and building barns. Since I and my family had the acreage to accommodate this vision, I became the targeted parent to disappoint Stephanie and fend off her CYS inspired whims.
Around late November or early December 1999, it was brought to my attention that Ms. Zimmerman held an ex parte meeting with my wife and daughter together. It was revealed to me that in the presence of my wife she asked Stephanie to which parent she preferred to live with full time. When my attorney asked Ms. Zimmerman why I was not included in that meeting, she lied and said she telephoned my residence but I failed to respond to her telephone call. Infuriating me again with her deception, I filed a revised pro se petition to have Ms. Zimmerman removed as guardian ad litem and place her under investigation for emotionally abusing her client. At a January 6, 2000 conference, Judge Carpenter agreed to voluntarily dismiss Zimmerman from her duties and claimed he would enter an order as such. He also dismissed my petition without prejudice.
By the end of December 1999, Stephanie's emotional condition had sank to its lowest point since being abducted from our residence in 1996. The Baker school personnel was concerned for her behavioral decline as Stephanie began pulling out her hair again. Out of fear that Dr. Baker was going to pull off another emergency trip for Stephanie to the Meadows Psychiatric Center, I filed a pro se petition for injunctive relief against CYS and Dr. Baker. My intention was to have a psychiatric reevaluation of Stephanie done by an independent psychologist without the input or influence of CYS and Dr. Baker. The petition also made reference and passed blame to the Blair County Court for negligently allowing Stephanie to emotionally deteriorate under its directives. Again Judge Carpenter dismissed my petition citing council of record.
In March 2000, allegations emerged that Stephanie had threatened to kill people in her school and burn down the building. Rising to the occasion was CYS. However, Ms. Kelly said CYS did not know what to do to help Stephanie. Accordingly, Dr. Nancy Baker's counseling services were going to be utilized and CYS was now making emergency appointments for Stephanie with Dr.Baker. They alluded that Dr. Baker would get to the bottom of Stephanie's regressive emotions and aggressive behavior and institutionalize her if she deemed it appropriate.
Because I couldn't bear to see Stephanie suffer any longer, I filed a special relief petition pro se based on allegations that my wife was deliberately abusing Stephanie emotionally to force CYS or Dr. Baker to take emergency medical actions against her. I laid on the court that Stephanie was about to have a nervous breakdown. From my experience my wife had taken a similar course of action back in July 1997 that resulted in Stephanie being institutionalized by Dr. Baker and CYS at the Meadows Psychiatric Center. As I had mentioned earlier, this action resulted in Stephanie being heavily medicated and being restricted to certain paternal family members on my every other weekend visits. CYS, Dr. Baker, and Ms. Frederick were still not satisfied with that arrangement and pushed the court hard to remove me from Stephanie's life.
Ms. Frederick responded to my petition with a pro se answer that I was not qualified to determine Stephanie was on the verge of a nervous breakdown and passed blame on me for Stephanie's degenerating mental health. Judge Carpenter dismissed my petition citing attorney of record.
It was around mid March 2000 that my attorney and I were not seeing eye to eye in his handling of my case and started to distance himself from me. Stephanie's condition and situation seemed to be of no concern to him. What I hadn't realized at the time, he was deliberately upsetting me so I would dismiss him. Taking the bait, I asked that he no longer represent me in further custody proceedings and I requested that he turn over the entire case file to me.
I began to mentally review and piece together Ms. Frederick's pattern of behavior and control she had over the professionals involved with Stephanie's treatment. It was then I realized Ms. Frederick's behavior went beyond the revengeful scorn of a disgruntled woman going through a bitter divorce. My wife was displaying characteristics of mother's suffering with Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome. She was deliberately causing Stephanie to act out emotionally and then run to the professionals with her conclusions and observations that Stephanie was mentally ill from birth. Most of these episodes were either induced or feigned. The gratification my wife received from this was the attention, camaraderie, and support she was receiving from the court, the doctors, and other professionals she forced into Stephanie's life.
This theory added new light to why Stephanie's mental health had been deteriorating at such a rapid pace. Fearing for the direction my wife was taking Stephanie, I filed a pro se petition for emergency relief. The crux of my petition alleged that Ms. Frederick was a Munchausen by Proxy mother who was inflicting severe emotional abuse on her daughter.
This time Judge Carpenter reacted by rescheduling the May 9, 2000 pre-hearing conference up to March 31, 2000. He also required that pre-hearing statements be filed 10 days prior to the hearing.
At the March 31 pre-hearing conference, we were advised by hearing officer Michael Reighard that Judge Carpenter wanted this custody issue ended and therefore scheduled hearings beginning April 5, 2000. We were both urged to get busy since we had numerous professional witnesses to be subpoenaed within 5 days.
Reacting to the alleged school threats by Stephanie, CYS entered my parents home on March 31, 2000, where Steph and I resided and asked to see the whereabouts of our guns and ammunition as Stephanie watched. When we had showed them our guns were stored in a closet and our ammunition was in my dresser drawer, they demanded that the ammunition be locked away from Stephanie's access.
On April 3, 2000, CYS returned to double check that the shells were locked away. Ms. Kelly was inquisitive as to what I planned to ask her on the witness stand during the upcoming hearings.
Because Judge Carpenter gave such short notice to prepare a case of this magnitude, I asked Attorney Speice if he would be willing to get involved with the case again. Seeming to of had first hand information or perhaps he was a mind reader, he quipped that he thinks Judge Carpenter wanted me and my wife without legal counsel.
On April 5, 2000, we had our first hearing of what became a series of six hearings. Before the hearing began, a lawyer by the name of Beverly Mears approached us. Ms. Mears conveyed that Judge Carpenter just appointed her this morning as Stephanie's guardian ad litem to assure that Stephanie's interests in the matter were adequately represented. The four common witnesses attending that day in chronological order were Dr. Hanlon, Stephanie's inclusion teacher (Bonita Reimer) from the Baker school, Shannon Kelly of CYS, and psychologist Scott Lambert.
As I had expected with the exception of Mr. Lambert, every witness who had extensive contact with Ms. Frederick, prior to the hearings, would begin their testimony struggling to give an appearance of impartiality. Within a few minutes, each witness except Mr. Lambert would start to slant their testimony in favor of the plaintiff mother. Three of these witnesses confirmed that their professional interactions with Stephanie were solely based on my wife's input and perceptions of Stephanie. Scott Lambert said he considered input from Ms. Frederick and myself
In summary, Dr. Hanlon's testimony was primarily restricted to her medical treatment and physical condition of Stephanie. She had also displayed an unusual closeness to Ms. Frederick and believed her to be an ideal mother who deeply loved her daughter. Dr. Hanlon described Stephanie's visit to her office as normally uncooperative and tumult when accompanied by her mother. In contrast, she saw Stephanie as cooperative and well behaved when accompanied by her dad alone. I asked Dr. Hanlon if she ever heard of Munchausen by Proxy? She answered yes, it is a condition that mother's have who make their children physically sick and then they have them medically treated. I asked Dr. Hanlon if that would also include making their children appear to be mentally ill. She hesitated and then answered yes, they can do that. I asked Dr. Hanlon if these Munchausen by Proxy mothers have the unique ability to fool doctors? She answered yes, they do.
When Ms. Mears asked her first question on cross examination, I found her purported neutrality to be absolute bunk. It was a direct attack at me.
In summary, Ms. Reimer's testimony centered on Stephanie's behavior pattern in school. She testified to observing Stephanie biting herself, pulling out the hair on her head, becoming aggressive towards teachers, picking at herself until sores developed, poking at herself with a pencil, repeatedly tying and untying her shoe laces, outbursts, openly bringing family problems up during class discussions, falls asleep in class, couldn't stay focused on school work, and made demands that her one on one tutor do her class assignments and turn the pages of her book. Ms. Reimer further testified that before each school day began my wife would approach the school teachers and give an account of Stephanie's mood for the day and what they should expect to deal with. Because Ms. Reimer was vague on the exact time period the shared custody took effect, I am sure it was by accident that she testified to seeing Stephanie happy for the for the first time in March 1999, (see IEP school report) after the joint custody agreement was reached, since entering the Baker School.
When I questioned Ms. Reimer, I gave her a list of psychological symptoms that were indicators of severe emotional abuse. Ms. Reimer agreed they fit her behavioral profile of Stephanie. She went on to admit they were aware that these were signs of emotional abuse that the school had been watching for some time.
In summary when Shannon Kelly testified, she tried to portray me as this uncooperative father who just couldn't believe his daughter was mentally ill. Accordingly, I just couldn't get behind CYS's suggestions or Dr. Baker's and Dr. Eugene Polmueller's treatment regimen of Stephanie.
About five minutes into my cross examination of Ms. Kelly, it came to my attention that she failed to bring as much as a piece of paper to the witness stand let alone CYS records as was directed by subpoena. I asked Ms. Kelly where the CYS records were? Judge Carpenter quickly intervened and asked if I was interested in something particular? I answered yes, their daily casework sheets. Judge Carpenter then negotiated with me that perhaps Ms. Kelly could give him those records later and he would review them. He asked what I wanted from those records in particular? I told him I was interested in how many complaints Ms. Frederick filed against me after the custody agreement was reached. Judge Carpenter asked if I would care if the records were given to him and he would look for that information privately. Reluctantly, I agreed. However, my very next question to Ms. Kelly was, were there complaints filed by Ms. Frederick after the agreement? She answered, yes. I asked Ms. Kelly if CYS ever thought that my wife was trying to undermine the custody agreement? She answered no.
I then questioned Ms. Kelly if she was aware of Stephanie being abducted by knife point? She answered yes, CYS knows about it. I asked her if this could be considered emotional abuse. She hesitated and then answered, she didn't know. I asked if Stephanie had told her that mom said her daddy never wanted her. She answered yes, but I couldn't believe that Stephanie's mother could say something like that to her. I asked if this actually occurred would this be emotional abuse? She answered, I don't know. I sarcastically asked Ms. Kelly if this was child protective services? She answered yes, well I know if someone told me my dad never wanted me it would bother me. I then read Ms. Kelly the same list of emotional abuse symptoms that I gave Ms. Reimer and I asked her if the symptoms reminded her of anyone? She answered "yes, Stephanie. I asked Ms. Kelly if she was aware of Munchausen by Proxy? She answered, she was. I asked Ms. Kelly to define this condition. She described it as mothers who make their children sick and then pretend to have these illnesses treated. I asked Ms. Kelly if she was saying that other mothers can make their children sick, but not Ms. Frederick? She answered, I didn't say that. I shot back, ma'am you just testified to that.
On re-examination, Ms. Frederick asked Judge Carpenter if she may ask Shannon a question about something that was said to her in confidentiality? Mr. Carpenter said, she could. Ms. Kelly, could you tell the court what your opinion of Mr. Kearns is after a telephone conversation you had with him? Yes, I said Mr. Kearns is insane.
In summary, Mr. Lambert had testified that he was appointed by the school system to delve into Stephanie's emotional problems in the school environment. Mr. Lambert said from talking with Stephanie and his observations of her in class she was a likable normal girl who was under a lot of stress caused by the divorce situation. He saw Steph as being extremely perceptive to strangers entering her class room, especially if the teacher was pulled aside to talk. He believed that the parents not cooperating was the cause of her emotional instability. However, he acknowledged that Stephanie's deterioration was exacerbated by outside individuals (CYS and other professionals). He further reasoned Steph was to the point she was being pushed over the edge by the constant intervention into her life, but at the same time couldn't be left dealing with her problems alone.
I questioned Mr. Lambert, if Stephanie's emotional deterioration was necessarily the result of both parents or could one parent effect her the same way? He answered one parent could cause it. I told Mr. Lambert that Stephanie had been put through several traumatic events in her life. He said that Stephanie's behavior's could be indicative of Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome and he never thought to explore that avenue. I asked Mr. Lambert if he saw Stephanie as being to the point of a nervous break down? He answered that Stephanie was just about ready to crack. He then told the court to excuse his language, but if you want my opinion the "Hell" has been beat out of Stephanie.
During the April 6th, 2000 hearing, three witnesses testified in chronological order: Mrs. Diane Beiswenger, Dr. Eugene Polmueller, Diane Beiswenger (finishing up), and Mr. David Kearns.
Mrs. Beiswenger's and Mr. David Kearns' testimony centered on Stephanie's behavior before and after the marriage breakup. Essentially, they described Stephanie as a kind, likable, well-behaved girl before the breakup. They described her attitude and behavior during visits with the paternal family virtually the same as the post marriage breakup. Mr. Polmueller's testimony hinged on his treating Stephanie with mind altering drugs and his psychological conclusions that were primarily and regularly formulated on the input from Ms. Frederick.
Taking the same approach with Polmueller as I did with Ms. Kelly and Ms. Reimer, I asked him to listen to a list of the behaviors that Ms. Reimer and Ms. Kelly admitted to observing while professionally interacting with Stephanie. I then read him the list of psychological symptoms of emotional abuse that I had given Ms. Reimer and Ms. Kelly. Given that, I asked Mr. Polmueller to supply a definition to those symptoms? He answered that could indicate emotional distress. I asked would that mean emotional abuse? He answered "yes."
I asked Polmueller if he knew what Munchausen by Proxy was? He answered yes, a mother who makes their child sick and then pursues treatment for them. I asked if Ms. Frederick was Munchausen by Proxy? He answered "no." I asked, could it be possible that she has Munchausen by Proxy? Again he answered no, citing he was the expert and he knows more about it than me. I asked if it is possible for someone to induce emotional symptoms into a person? He answered yes, they can do things to induce them. I asked if it is a possibility that Ms. Frederick is Munchausen? He answered, anything is possible.
Because Judge Carpenter had a criminal trial scheduled for the following week, he was undecided when he would have available days to schedule additional hearings. On or about April 11,2000, I received a notice of April 7, 2000 scheduling our next hearing for April 20, 2000.
In closing the April 6, 2000 hearing, Mr. Carpenter openly and on the record directed a statement to me as follows: "Mr. Kearns I am beginning to grasp what had been going on here. I can see that the doctors were not listening to you. I see the system has not treated you fairly. I know you have no respect for the system and you probably don't have any respect for me either".
During the interim period between custody hearings, an incident had occurred on April 9th, where Stephanie was beat up in a bath tub by her mother, half-sister, and half-sister's husband. The beating took place just before I was to pick Stephanie up that Sunday evening. When I picked Stephanie up, I noticed she was wearing a baseball cap and was talking as if something was in her mouth. I then realized her mouth was swelled. I also noticed Stephanie was walking with a limp. Because Stephanie acted differently, I asked her what was wrong? She answered, they beat me up in Grandma's bathtub because I threw a hissy fit when they wouldn't allow me to have another biscuit. Steph said Aaron broke the door in and they threw her down in the bath tub. She told me she hit her back on the foot stool in the tub and her back and leg hurts. She said her half-sister held her down in the tub while her mother punched her in the mouth, face, knees, and back areas. Steph then showed me the cut inside her mouth. While the melee was playing out, Steph said Grandma Frederick watched over them and cursed at her. Steph told me her mother and half-sister had picked on her the entire weekend and said she was aware they were trying to create an incident to cause her to fight back. When I asked Steph if she wanted to visit her cousins that evening, she answered "no, I am wearing the hat because I don't have hair on the top of my head."
On Monday, April 10th, I went to the custody office and asked for help, since CYS could not be trusted. Janice Meadows told me she would do something. At around 11:00 a.m., CYS caseworker, Shannon Kelly, and Kay Engelbret came to my home to question Steph about the incident. Once again Stephanie gave them an exact recount of the beating. Accordingly, Ms. Engelbret told Stephanie we (CYS) will have to change your situation so this never happens to you again. As a temporary solution, Ms. Engelbret told me that Stephanie would need to he placed in protective custody. She told me that this is normally done by putting a child in a foster home. She deduced that Steph would never accept that. Then she suggested the possibility of placing Steph with distant relatives on either side of the family. Since we had none, she suggested that Ms. Mears wanted Stephanie psychologically re-evaluated, thus Engelbret recommended putting Stephanie in protective custody in Aloysious Hall at Conemaugh Memorial in Johnstown, Pa.. When I suggested Pittsburgh, Engelbret balked, citing that was to far away. At that point, I reluctantly agreed to allow CYS to place Stephanie in Conemaugh. Ms. Engelbret then suggested for me to take Stephanie to a physician for a physical examination.
By 1:00 p.m. Monday, Ms. Engelbret called me at my home and asked if I had made the doctor's appointment for Stephanie. I told her yes, I had made one with Dr. Marianne Hanlon who was Steph's family doctor. I informed Ms. Engelbret that Dr. Hanlon was not available that day so a doctor's assistant would be doing the examination.
At 3:30 p.m., I had taken Steph to Hanlon's office for an examination only to find my wife sitting there to greet Stephanie. While sitting there, Ms. Frederick was summoned to answer the telephone. A few minutes later, Ms. Frederick announced to the entire waiting room that Kay Engelbret of CYS wanted to talk with me on the phone. When I took the phone, Ms. Engelbret disclosed to me that my wife will be transporting Stephanie to Conemaugh immediately after Stephanie is examined. I told her Stephanie is scared stiff of her mother and you are going to allow her to take her to Conemaugh? Realizing how bizarre and insincere this sounded, Ms. Engelbret said, I will call you back in a few minutes. A few minutes later, she called me again and advised me that Shannon Kelly will be meeting us in the doctor's office by 4:00 p.m., and she and Ms. Frederick will take Steph to Conemaugh together.
At approximately 4 00 p.m., Stephanie and I were called into the examination room. Ironically, Dr. Hanlon began to question Steph as to what had taken place in the bathtub. Again Stephanie recited the entire incident and Dr. Hanlon asked Stephanie what was hurting her. Stephanie told her that her back and side hurt. Before commencing her examination, Dr. Hanlon told me that she was going to call Ms. Frederick and Shannon Kelly into the room while doing the examination of Stephanie. Meanwhile, I asked Dr. Hanlon to go out into the hall to talk. I explained to her that Stephanie was going to Conemaugh immediately following her examination and I can't do that to her or be a part of it. As I was leaving the office, I sent Ms. Kelly and Ms. Frederick back to the examination room. Ms. Kelly told me that she would be in contact with me later that evening.
That evening at 10:30 p.m., I had called Conemaugh and was put in touch with Shannon Kelly. Ms. Kelly told me that Stephanie was doing fine and I may call her office in the morning to pick up instructions to get to Conemaugh and a telephone number to call for visitation arrangements. When I called Conemaugh on the morning of April 11th, I was met with a hostile attitude by staff members. I was told that my visitation would be arranged around my wife's visitation schedule since she had the priority over visitation time. I was requested to make telephone calls each day for available times that I may visit Stephanie. Needless to say, I thought this to be highly irregular since Stephanie was in CYS protective custody and Ms. Frederick was the alleged named perpetrator of child abuse. Stunning me further, I asked the nurse if I may talk with the doctor before Stephanie is evaluated. I told the nurse that I am concerned that Stephanie's evaluation would be strictly based on other doctor's reports and there needs to be parental input as to Stephanie's condition. The nurse told me that the doctors are too busy to talk with me and if I have anything to say I should sign up for family therapy.
Adding insult to injury, I called Conemaugh on April 12th, for my visitation time and found myself being informed by a nurse that Stephanie is being given additional medications, namely Depakote, to control her impulsiveness. This was done without my knowledge or consent. After two weeks at Conemaugh, Stephanie was released from the mental hospital, into the custody of her mother who drove her home alone.
On April 20, 2000, we had our third custody hearing. The witnesses to testify that day were Mr. David Kearns, Mr. Eugene Frederick, Mr. Robert G. Kearns, Jr., CYS caseworker Shannon Kelly, CYS supervisor Kay Engelbret and Mrs. Eileen Delozier- Ms. Frederick's sister.
Mr. Eugene Frederick was brought to the witness stand as a substitute for Ms. Frederick's mother, Lucille Frederick, to whom I subpoenaed to testify concerning the bathtub incident. Judge Carpenter accepted Ms. Frederick's excuse that her mother was too frail to testify and would not bear up to my questioning. Consequently, Carpenter allowed Mr. Frederick to substitute.
In summary, Mr. Frederick began his testimony stating that he knew little about the incident in the bathtub. He said he was not in a good vantage point in Grandma Frederick's house to witness the event but would tell the court what he actually saw or heard. Forty-five minutes later, he was testifying to a detailed and complete blow by blow account of what had taken place that day. Basically, he described and blamed the entire incident on Stephanie's mental illness. Of course, he and the Frederick family were just the victims and innocent by-standers.
Before the hearing commenced, Ms. Mears was overheard asking Shannon Kelly and Ms. Engelbret if Ms. Frederick was investigated for the child abuse allegation. They both said "yes, we did an investigation."
This time around, Ms. Frederick was recalling Shannon Kelly and Kay Engelbret to testify. When she asked that one of them take the witness stand, Ms. Kelly and Ms. Engelbret squabbled as to who should go first. They both looked up at the judge and told him that neither wanted to testify. Judge Carpenter said, one of you will have to take the stand. Ms. Engelbret asked, if her and Kelly could go together. Judge Carpenter said, no we clearly can not allow that. I was perceptive that they knew they were beat during the April 5th hearing and it appeared they knew what they would be in for this time around, too.
When Ms. Kelly took the witness stand on direct examination, she methodically described the entire April 9th bathtub beating as Stephanie's own fault. Ms. Frederick was now the abused victim of Stephanie's emotional problems and disobedience. Ms. Kelly concluded that Stephanie was not beaten by her mother, but is a problem child who tells whoppers. The new twist CYS gave to Stephanie's beating allegation was she had been a difficult and out-of-control child that day, who needed to be subdued from hurting herself and her half-sister's baby. Putting icing on the cake, Ms. Kelly described Steph's half sister as being trained and certified to restrain people and Steph was only being brought under control. Ms. Kelly also noted that Ms. Frederick was so concerned for Stephanie that she had called Dr. Baker on April 9th to see what should be done with Stephanie. Further testimony revealed that Stephanie's half-sister (Jandora) was now in the employ of Blair County Family and Youth Services.
The cross-examination of Ms. Kelly by me went as follows: Did you tell me on April 10th, that Stephanie was being placed at Conemaugh for protective custody? She answered, yes. Didn't you tell me that this could he used as a second opinion and possibly Stephanie could be reduced or taken off the medications? She answered, yes. Who provided Conemaugh with the intake information of Stephanie's emotional problems? She answered, Ms. Frederick did. Did CYS take Stephanie's complaint serious? She answered, yes we did. So serious that you allowed the mother to take her to Conemaugh and admit her? She answered, yes, but you know Stephanie fantasizes and tells stories---just like the story she told us that you beat her up once. But I was investigated on that allegation, wasn't I? She answered, yes. Was Ms. Frederick investigated for the bathtub beating? She answered "no." Is Ms. Frederick going to be investigated? Ms. Kelly answered, not at this time. I told Ms. Kelly that Dr. Hanlon did no examination of Stephanie while I was in the examining room. You just testified that it was only a couple minutes after I left until you went into the examining room with Stephanie. Did Dr. Hanlon do an examination of Stephanie in your presence? She answered, no. Did Dr. Hanlon do any examination of Stephanie that day? She answered, I don't know.
Kay Engelbret's testimony was a brief confirmation of Shannon Kelly's testimony. Ms. Engelbret also testified that she was in contact with Dr. Baker on April 10th, and Dr. Baker suggested that Stephanie be dispositioned. What had become a predictable pattern during the custody hearings, Ms. Engelbret said Baker agreed that Stephanie should be hospitalized and at this time, it was Conemaugh.
In summary, Ms. Frederick placed her sister Eileen Delozier on the witness stand to give alibi that Stephanie was not removed by knife point on the night Stephanie was abducted. Ms. Delozier also was asked to give her version of the bathtub beating of Stephanie on April 9th.
When I cross-examined Ms. Delozier, her composure collapsed and she claimed that she did not see a knife the night Stephanie was taken away, since Stephanie's half-sister was standing behind the door. I asked Ms. Delozier if she was told by Ms. Frederick or Jandora that a knife was involved that night? She answered yes, I knew Jandora was holding a knife to protect herself
At the close of the hearing, Judge Carpenter hinted to Attorney Beverly Mears that she would probably want the people who were involved with Stephanie's treatment at Conemaugh Memorial Hospital to testify. Of course, Ms. Mears agreed.
At the May 9, 2000, custody hearing four witnesses chronologically testified in this order: Conemaugh psychologist Denis Kashurba, Conemaugh social worker Kathy Waligora, Conemaugh psychiatrist Rudolfo Medina, and Ms. Lou Ann Frederick.
In summary, Ms. Waligora's testimony was comprised of her family therapy session with Stephanie and her mother and subsequently with me and Stephanie together. She described the meeting with Stephanie and her mother as starting out well when Steph was presented with a gift from her mother. A short time later, Stephanie became upset and threw things around the room when her mother answered questions concerning the paternal family. Ms. Waligora described her meeting with me and Stephanie as going well with Stephanie laying her head on my lap. She observed that Steph was well behaved and only displayed some restlessness because she wanted to see the rest of her paternal family that was waiting outside.
In summary, Ms. Mears tried to develop Dennis Kashurba's testimony through his observations of Stephanie at Conemaugh. He attempted to establish that Stephanie was an angry, hostile girl who needed much psychotropic medications, psychotherapy, and institutionalization. He portrayed Stephanie as a child who was beyond the control of her parents and needed to be placed in a Restricted Treatment Facility. Mr. Kashurba explained that this facility (basically a prison with locked doors and fences) would eventually break Stephanie's will into compliance. He said this would require more psychotropic medications and long term isolation from family. Mr. Kashurba said he derived these conclusions through his personal interactions with Stephanie and background input from Stephanie's mother. He also acknowledged that he never talked with me to develop his recommendations. Ms. Mears then questioned Mr. Kashurba if input from both parents might have resulted in a different diagnosis. To cover himself Mr. Kashurba said he would have came up with the same conclusions, absent any parental input.
When I cross-examined Mr. Kashurba, I told him I had before me
a drawing that Stephanie drew for Dr. Baker depicting being
removed from her home by knife point the night of the marriage
breakup. I told Mr. Kashurba that Stephanie has also went
through numerous other traumatic events in her life. Without
saying more, Mr. Kashurba said Stephanie could be suffering with
Post Trauma Stress Syndrome. I told Mr. Kashurba that the record
in this case has consistently indicated that it was Stephanie's
desire to return home to live with her father. Could Stephanie's
behavioral outburst be her method of crying out for someone to
listen to her? He answered, it could be. And if the doctors and
even this court has denied allowing Stephanie to go home, would
that be an emotional stressor in Stephanie's life? He answered,
In summary, Ms. Mears tried to develop Rudolfo Medina's testimony that Stephanie was a troubled girl who needed to be medicated to control her behavioral problems. In doing so, he said that he had given Stephanie Depakote to supplement her established regimen of Prozac and Zyprexa medications. Ms. Mears asked if Stephanie's dosages were in the normal range for children her age. Of course, Mr. Medina said they were within the normal levels for children. Like Mr. Kashurha, Mr. Medina was also advocating the Restricted Treatment Facility for Stephanie.
When I cross examined Mr. Medina, I asked him if he had ever talked with me or Ms. Frederick? He answered, he did not. I asked Mr. Medina where did he acquire his information to come up with his diagnostic conclusions of Stephanie? He answered, from the mother on the admittance form to enter Conemaugh and the other doctors" reports. I asked Mr. Medina why he had not talked to me concerning Stephanie? He answered, he would have but wasn't aware I wanted to talk with him. I told him I tried, but I was told you were too busy to talk with me. He answered, he would have met with me, had he known. I asked Mr. Medina if he had looked into Stephanie's background to see what could be causing Stephanie's emotional and behavioral difficulties? He answered, no, I treat my patients for the symptoms that I see when entering the hospital. I asked Mr. Medina if he was aware Stephanie was involved in a confrontation in a bathtub prior to her admittance to Conemaugh? He said, he read something about it. I asked Mr. Medina if the first doctor who became involved with Stephanie had deliberately misdiagnosed the home environment evaluation and treated her accordingly, be guilty of child abuse? He answered, it would. I then asked, if every doctor following that diagnosis would also be guilty of child abuse? He answered, it would be, but why would a doctor do something like that on purpose. I told him there could be many reasons. I asked Mr. Medina if he was aware that Stephanie was kidnapped by her mother at knife point the night of the marriage separation. He answered, he was not, but if this had occurred Stephanie could be suffering with Post Trauma Stress Syndrome.
During Ms. Mears redirect examination, she had asked Mr. Medina if Stephanie's emotional symptoms could be indicative of a mother suffering from Munchausen by Proxy? Mr. Medina said, he didn't think they were.
Again I crossed examined Mr. Medina and asked if he new what Munchausen by Proxy was? He said, he had professional expertise on Munchausen and Munchausen by Proxy. He asked me to define it. After a verbal exchange, I defined what Munchausen by Proxy was. Given that, I asked Mr. Medina if he could tell a Munchausen by Proxy mother by observing or talking with them? He answered, no.
Judge Carpenter then followed up with a question. He asked Mr. Medina if Stephanie had from the beginning of this huge record wanted to live with her daddy and was being denied, be a stressor in her life? Mr. Medina answered, it would be a significant stressor. I then followed up on Judge Carpenter's question. I asked if Stephanie's alleged suicide gestures or whatever be a result of being forced to live with the mother that she hates, and believes the only way out of her situation is to die? He answered, yes, it could be.
In summary, Ms. Frederick's testimony basically took issue with her beliefs that she was abused during our ten year marriage. She claimed that Stephanie was a very abnormal, immature girl who displayed symptoms of mental illness since birth. She tried to establish that Stephanie was unsociable, intellectually deficient, suffered ADD and as a result could not learn academically since entering the pre-school. Ms. Frederick further informed the court that I had suggested at the January 26th conciliation conference, that the transcripts of the hearings have been altered.
On May 16th, we had our fifth hearing which was to conclude the custody proceedings. The final two witnesses to testify were Ms. Frederick and Stephanie.
During cross examination, I destroyed Ms. Frederick's conjured up mental illness of Stephanie through testimony, and numerous exhibits, such as report cards and achievement awards from school and church activities.
I asked Ms. Frederick to examine the knife point drawing Stephanie made for Dr. Baker. I caught myself and told Mr. Carpenter that I would like to enter the drawing into the record as exhibit. Judge Carpenter said, Mr. Kearns, I believe that drawing has already been entered into the record by Attorney Speice last year. I told Judge Carpenter, no, it wasn't. You gave that back to Attorney Speice last year after the February hearings. Judge Carpenter said, OK, you can have the drawing marked as exhibit and if we find it has already been entered into the record we will deal with that later. I then questioned Ms. Frederick if that drawing accurately depicted the events on the night of the separation? Ms. Frederick answered no, the people were not standing as Stephanie drew them and Jandora (Steph's half-sister) was not holding the knife outward, she was holding it downward.
As the testimony concluded Judge Carpenter suggested that we enter any exhibits that we may have concerning Stephanie. Compliantly, Ms. Mears conducted the exchange of numerous documents that was piled upon the table for the plaintiff and defendant.
Finalizing the hearing, Judge Carpenter interviewed Stephanie with Ms. Mears present in his chambers. After the interview, Ms. Mears called me and Ms. Frederick back into the courtroom. She told us that Judge Carpenter wanted the observers to remain in the hall.
Judge Carpenter asked if either of us wanted to make a closing statement. Ms. Frederick asked that Judge Carpenter consider Stephanie's condition 10 years down the road. I told Judge Carpenter that anything I would say would only capsulate what was presented during the testimony. Judge Carpenter then made a statement that the parties failed to present much of a case, but managed to get a lot of things off their chests that happened over the last three years. I can understand that and that was all right, he said. He went on further to say, that he will have to cut one of the parents from Stephanie's life. Mr. Kearns, you blame your wife for causing your daughter emotional problems and she blames you. I doubt if we would ever know who caused her the problems. Mr. Kearns, you believed that all the doctors involved with Stephanie were in collusion with Ms. Frederick. But yet, several witnesses from Conemaugh who did not know you or Ms. Frederick had no ax to grind with you, saw your daughter as having severe emotional problems. I will have an order out in three weeks with my decision. Consequently, Judge Carpenter declared the record closed.
To show the uncanny alignment and persuasiveness Ms. Frederick had over the court and professionals involved with this custody case, Ms. Frederick wrote a letter to Shannon Kelly on May 12, 2000, and forwarded it to Ms. Mears on the12th. Ms. Mears conveniently held this letter from me until the closing of the May 16th hearing when the court record was already declared closed and nothing new could be entered into the record.
It wasn't until weeks later, when I was organizing my paperwork from the hearing, that I discovered a hearing statement from the court reporter indicating that as part of Ms. Frederick's case Ms. Kelly was supposed to have entered a confidential envelope into the record on April 20th. What had struck me as odd, Ms. Frederick nor Ms. Kelly entered anything into the record that day as the statement implied. Putting my thoughts together, I realized the confidential envelope was purported to contain the casework sheets that CYS was supposed to have delivered to Judge Carpenter on April 6th. What was more bizarre, the confidential envelope was made to appear as being entered as defendant's exhibit on April 20th, which contained a letter from Dr. Hanlon. When I found the alleged letter, it was Stephanie's medical report from Dr. Hanlon detailing the conclusions of her physical examination of Stephanie on April 10th,.
On May 17th, I went to the court reporters office and requested that Christa Miloro and Sally Zeek produce the transcripts of the hearings. It was my intention to take the transcripts to the Attorney General's Office and the news media. Ms. Miloro and Ms. Zeek advised me that they were too busy typing the transcripts from a homicide case to make my transcripts. They said I would be notified at a later date when they would start them.
On June 8th, I again went to Christa Miloro and asked if she had started any of the hearing transcripts. She said no, I am still working on the homicide trial transcripts. I asked her if she could give me a rough guess when they will be started. She said, I don't know when I can get to them.
On June 20th, I had a hearing before Judge Carpenter that resulted from the school district's desire to place Stephanie in a Partial Hospital Program for the summer. Ms. Mears believed that Stephanie would highly benefit from this program. My argument was Stephanie receives more benefits by being home with her family and cousins that she was raised with. The witnesses to testify that day were subpoenaed as common witnesses and listed as Laura Chandler PHP administrator, Ms Reimer, and Altoona Area School District psychologist Carol Hewit.
Before any testimony was taken, Judge Carpenter advised the parties that this was a narrow issue and custody matters will not be raised since the custody record is closed. In summary, Ms. Mears went right to work using Ms. Chandler to sell the court this rainbow picture how well the PHP works and how well Stephanie was responding to it. Ms. Mears then went on the attack to cite differences in the way Stephanie performed in the program with the respective parents' custody schedule. Of course, it was pointed out that Stephanie sleeps more when with her father. Ms. Chandler then gave a highly exaggerated recollection of my first meeting with her as me being demanding.
Ms. Chandler described how Stephanie enjoyed the PHP program and looked forward to getting on and off the van each day, she was also becoming more sociable and was interacting with other kids. She described how the children in the program are gently punished when misbehaving by taking their scholar dollar rewards from them. Ms. Chandler took credit that Stephanie had quit pulling her hair out since entering the program. Ms. Chandler portrayed this program as a dedicated public service designed to help these emotionally disturbed children be productive citizens in society. Ms. Chandler also went through a list of emotional symptoms that they observed in Stephanie while being in the PHP program. The list included: picking at scabs, eye lids, wore hat to cover bald spot, attention seeking, defiant, and angry outbursts now and then. (It should be noted these are symptoms of children being emotionally abused). Ms. Chandler also testified that Dr. Bennett, the program's psychiatrist was looking into Stephanie's problems as being that of Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome..
In cross-examination, my strategy was to make the PHP program appear as what it is, a business to make money. I asked, Ms. Chandler, how many children are in the program free of charge? Her answer was, none. I asked, Ms. Chandler, what the percentage of the program's success was in curing these children's emotional problems? She didn't have any idea. I asked what the program does to make these children happy? She answered, we don't try to make them happy, we try to make them adjust. I asked if being happy wasn't a part of healing? She guessed it was. I asked what the program has better to offer Stephanie than being home with a family who loves her and she's happy? She answered, we have trained professionals. I asked Ms. Chandler if the program was taking credit for Stephanie not pulling her hair out? She answered, I didn't say that. I asked Ms. Chandler if the program was a school setting? She answered, it is similar in structure. I asked, Ms. Chandler, is there an isolation room to punish children? She answered, yes, we have one but I don't like calling it that. I asked, Ms. Chandler, when children give reports of being abused, how is this dealt with? She answered, that staff will determine the validity and if there are indications of abuse, CYS would be called in. I asked where the program received it's input information pertaining to Stephanie's historical emotional difficulties? She answered, from Ms. Frederick. Because Ms. Chandler couldn't substantiate the worthiness of her PHP program for Stephanie, she became angry with my questions and stood up to walk off the witness stand. She was offended that I was attacking her program and she wasn't going to argue about it, anymore.
The court then asked Ms. Mears to present her next witness. Ms. Mears asked to have a few seconds so that she could talk with her witnesses in the hall. When she returned, she said she had no further witnesses.
Judge Carpenter asked what witnesses I would like to present. Accordingly, I called Ms. Diane Beiswenger to the stand. I asked Diane to describe the first day that Stephanie entered the PHP program. Diane described the event as being asked by the Baker school to come to the school and assist Stephanie getting off to the PHP program for the first day. Diane explained that Stephanie was happy to see us and she entered the school van to leave, without difficulty. I asked Diane to describe what she observed in Stephanie after returning home from the PHP program the second day. Diane said she was at my home when Stephanie got off the van. She put her arm around Steph to give her a hug and Stephanie said her shoulder hurt. Diane said she asked her the reason. Stephanie said, Ms. Reimer and her argued. Stephanie said, Ms.Reimer called in a school guard and forced her onto the PHP van by twisting her arm behind her back.
I then called Mr. David Kearns to testify as to what he observed of Stephanie since being placed in the School Districts Individualized Educational Program. Judge Carpenter stopped my questioning, asking what this had to do with the PHP program. I told Judge Carpenter it is all part of the IEP program. Judge Carpenter wanted to know where my questioning was going? I told him more child abuse! He told Dave to proceed and then suddenly stopped Dave, saying he wasn't going to allow it. Judge Carpenter closed the hearing citing he would allow Stephanie to remain in the program for now until he made his pending custody ruling. He warned that he was definitely going to remove Stephanie from one of the parents life. He reasoned the program may help Stephanie through this serious custody change. Judge Carpenter also directed Ms. Mears to send him a letter of custody recommendation. Judge Carpenter told Ms. Mears it doesn't have to be one, you can send several, if you wish.
On June 23, I had an appointment to see Dr. Richard Bennett at the PHP building. Dr. Bennett asked me what I thought was causing Stephanie's emotional problems. I told Dr. Bennett that Ms. Chandler testified that you were looking at Post Trauma Stress Syndrome as a possible cause for Stephanie's emotional difficulties. He answered, that he was considering it as a possibility. I told him that I agree with that thinking, because Stephanie had gone through numerous traumatic events in her life since November 1996. I told him, I didn't want to elaborate on those events, because I would rather be develop his conclusions through Stephanie. Dr. Bennett said, your daughter is not mentally ill why is she on these medications? I answered, because her mother wants her on them. He then asked, why is she in this PHP program? Dr. Bennett said he has been observing Stephanie playing games during recreation periods and had talked with her. He saw Stephanie as a polite, young lady. I told Dr. Bennett that Stephanie was always a nice girl and she is very coordinated at athletic events, in spite of her weight gain. Dr. Bennett said, he noticed that.
Dr. Bennett said, I have heard from someone that your belief is Stephanie fantasizes a lot as a means of escaping her problems. He said, I agree with you that is what she does it for. He said, Stephanie is not immature. She is just innocent and not knowledgeable on worldly things. You probably wanted to raise her that way. I agreed.
Dr. Bennett said it would be helpful to him if I could give him some specifics of the traumatic events Stephanie went through. I told him I hate to do that, but divorce is traumatic for children. He said yes, but they eventually overcome it, can you be more specific? I said, Stephanie was removed by knife point on the night of the marriage breakup. Stephanie was then kept away from my family with no means of communication. She was dragged out in the middle of the evening and put in a mental institution. She has been told by her mother that she will never see me again. And just recently she was beat up in a bathtub by her mother and half-sister and that is how she ended up in Conemaugh.
Dr. Bennett said, he wants to have Stephanie off the medications by the end of summer. I told him he would have a hard time convincing Stephanie's mother. He said, you know her better than anyone, how can we get her to agree to take her off the medications? I told him, you won't. He suggested that he has his ways of doing it. I told him, that would be great. (see Mr. Bennett's letter of March 19, 2002, after custody was given to the mother)
On July 8th, I received a copy of Ms. Mears' letter dated June 26th, outlining her custody recommendation that she sent to Judge Carpenter. Her letter had Ms. Frederick and I running equal in our beliefs and concerns regarding Stephanie's well being. We both love Stephanie very much. We were both involved with her education and neither one of us would deliberately hurt Stephanie. This I viewed as her opinions. However, Ms. Mears became flagrantly deceptive when she wrote two outright lies. First, she said Ms. Frederick and I were investigated by Children and Youth Services and neither were found to have abused Stephanie. The second lie stated that I would not cooperate with Stephanie's mental health care should I have custody. In both cases, she was well aware that testimony disclosed that (1) CYS did no investigation of the mother and (2) her own cross examination of me revealed I would cooperate in any impartially administered mental health care treatment of Stephanie until she is emotionally stabilized and we get to the bottom of what caused her problems in the first place.
Ms. Mears further wrote that Stephanie is especially attached to the paternal family and readily admits she prefers to live with her father. However, Ms. Mears said Stephanie does not need contact with each family. Wherefore, the custody needs to be limited to one parent having primary custody and the other limited to every other weekend visits, at most . When my brother and I read Ms. Mears' recommendation and saw it was so deceptive, we knew Judge Carpenter was going to give Stephanie to Ms. Frederick.
On July 15th, I received an order from Judge Carpenter hand delivered via the Sheriff department that placed the custody of Stephanie with her mother. Judge Carpenter totally removed me from Stephanie's life with the exception of a one hour supervised visit with my daughter per week. Judge Carpenter noted that if I was suspected of causing my daughter any emotional difficulties during these visits, I would be taken from her life completely. In contradiction to what Judge Carpenter had said at the June 20th hearing, he incorporated unrelated testimony to the custody issue from this hearing into his custody ruling. Given the gun Judge Carpenter had put to my head and considering the damage his order had done to Stephanie, I painfully chose not to pursue that visitation scheme. I didn't want to cause Stephanie more damage than the order had already done. Judge Carpenter had also instructed Ms. Mears to make arrangements for this supervised visitation the very first week of his order. In making this vicious order, Judge Carpenter admitted he was going to cause Stephanie compounding emotional problems, but Ms. Frederick could deal with these through the mental health facilities, or place her in a Restricted Care Facility. Judge Carpenter felt Stephanie's happiness living with her father would only be short term, and he had to look at long term which could only be accomplished through mental health care treatment and mental institutions that the mother was willing to provide.
It wasn't until after my mother passed away on July 27th, that Ms. Mears attempted to make any contact with me. On July 28th, Ms. Mears called my sister to ask what my opinion might be on Stephanie attending her grandmother's funeral. It wasn't until two weeks after I filed my appeal to Superior Court on August 9th, that Mears sent a letter advising me of my court ordered right to see my daughter for an hour a week.
On July 28th, I again approached Christa Miloro and asked when I could expect to have the transcripts of my hearing. Using the same excuse as before, she said they were not started since she was still was working on the homicide case transcript. At this point, I told her I would need them for an appeal to Superior Court.
On August 7th, I received a letter from CYS telling me that Karalyn Smeltzer was the new case worker assigned to Stephanie's case. I was told later that Shannon Kelly quit CYS.
As indicated, I filed an appeal to Superior Court on August 9th, and sent a request for transcripts to Christa Miloro and Sally Zeek.
On August 18th, I received a telephone call from Christa Miloro advising me that she had only completed a partial transcript of the April 6th hearing. She also informed me that she resigned her position with Judge Carpenter's office this day. The production of my transcripts would be assigned to a new girl, she said. To receive the partial transcript I was told to send Sally Zeek $12.90 and she would see that I got the transcript.
On or about September 4th, I received Christa Miloro's partial transcript and perused through Dr. Eugene Polmueller's testimony. Within a few minutes, I discovered that Dr. Polmueller's answer admitting that Stephanie's emotional symptoms were indicative of being emotionally abused was modified to appear as a statement by me, and not my question to which Polmueller answered, yes. As I read back and forth through the transcript I found other major material errors in Polmueller's testimony. I also found Judge Carpenter's statement about seeing the system hasn't treated me fairly was deleted. From my recollection of the hearing, I rated this particular transcript to be about 85% accurate.
Given my findings, I called Sally Zeek to inform her of the errors and there will need to be transcript corrections. Ms. Zeek asked, what kind of errors? I told her, material and factual errors. Ms. Zeek said, she doesn't know what can be done about it because that transcript was Christa Miloro's work and she quit. Passing that off, Ms. Zeek asked me, if I would like each transcript as they are completed or all at once when done? I told her, I would take them when they are all done.
As the September 24th deadline approached to have my case record transmitted to Superior Court, I went to the courthouse and asked Sally Zeek if we were going to make the 24th deadline. Ms. Zeek said, I don't think so, I am busy. My dad just died, and we're not going to make that deadline. Ms. Zeek flippantly said, she really never received an order to do the transcripts, other than the letter I sent them. I told Ms. Zeek, that a transcript of my case from last February 1999, had been altered and now the first forty pages that Christa Miloro just did has been changed. Ms. Zeek asked if any of hers were messed with? I told her, I would have to review them again. I asked Ms. Zeek, if it wasn't procedural to notify me before transcripts are filed with the prothonotary? And isn't there a five day period to determine their accuracy in case they need corrected? She answered, we don't do that in civil cases. Ms. Zeek told me, if I would pencil mark the transcript errors, she would be glad to check out the mistakes with the hearing audio tapes. I agreed and indicated I would do that. As I was leaving, Ms. Zeek said, she would contact me when the transcripts are docketed.
Since it was my understanding that the Superior Court only excepts valid excuses for a record being delinquent, I believed Ms. Zeek's excuse could not meet the parameters of validity. On or about October 17th, Judge Carpenter notified Superior Court that he had not been fully staffed with court reporters since around August 17th. Given that, he reasoned my hearing transcripts were a long term typing project that would have to be prioritized according to the court reporters' work load.
On or about December 18th, I sent a letter to Sally Zeek pleading for her to produce my hearing transcript of April 20th. I was concerned for the time span that I haven't seen my daughter and suggested if I could have that particular transcript I would contact the United States Justice Department for help. On December 19th, I received a telephone call from Sally Zeek telling me the transcript I requested was recently completed by Brenda Prosser, Christa Miloro's replacement. She said I may pick it up along with the second half of the April 6th hearing the next day.
On December 20th, my brother and I went to the courthouse and gave Brenda Prosser the $86.10 for the two transcripts. I asked Ms. Prosser, if Judge Carpenter ever had that transcript in his possession. She said no, I kept that transcript locked up in my file cabinet at all times. It never left my possession until I filed it in the prothonotary's office, she said. When we left her office, we stopped in the stairwell and paged directly to Shannon Kelly's testimony in cross-examination. In brief, new dialog now appeared in the record with Ms. Kelly confirming that Stephanie was examined by Dr. Hanlon. New dialogue now has me asking Ms. Kelly how long it had taken Dr. Hanlon to examine Steph. New dialogue has been added with Ms. Kelly denying that Stephanie needed to be placed in protective custody. Removed from the transcript was Ms. Kelly recommending foster care for Stephanie. When we returned home, further review of the testimony found the transcript to include new and expanded cross-examination of Ms. Kelly by Attorney Mears. Reading this part of the transcript enlightened us as to why it was staged to appear Ms. Frederick entered into exhibit on April 20th, a letter by Dr. Hanlon explaining her examination of Stephanie on April 10th.
I also discovered that where Eileen Delozier had admitted a knife was involved the night Stephanie was removed from the marital residence, was deleted. Testimony of Eugene Frederick was also altered. Where he had said he didn't see or know much about the bathtub beating of Stephanie on April 9th, was deleted. From my recollection of the April 20th hearing, I would rate the transcript to be about 65% accurate.
Within minutes after returning home I telephoned Judge Carpenter's office and asked to speak with Brenda Prosser or Sally Zeek. I was put in touch with Ms. Zeek and I told her I had just picked up the transcripts from Ms. Prosser and I found numerous material errors in the transcription (big time errors). Ms. Zeek gave me the impression she was concerned with my discovery. I asked Ms. Zeek what it will take to disclose the audio tapes of the hearing, a court order? She told me to hang on the telephone and she would see what can be done. A few minutes later, Judge Carpenter's secretary broke in and asked if I could wait a few more minutes. When Ms. Zeek took the phone again I detected a new attitude and demeanor. All of the sudden, she had no idea what could be done about the alleged transcript errors. It was now her opinion that the transcripts were accurately transcribed from the audio tapes and there was no way the audio tapes can be disclosed. Never, ever, heard of anything like this, she said. She told me that, if I believe there are errors I should file something with the court. I said, do you mean a petition to disclose the hearing tapes? "No, no," she answered, that can't be done, you can't hear the tapes. I told Ms. Zeek that maybe we can make some special exception in this case. I hung up telling her that I would file something.
On December 21, 2000, I wrote a letter to the Blair County Prothonotary's office, requesting that my case file record not be transmitted to Superior Court until the hearing transcripts be corrected pursuant to the rules of appellate procedure.
On December 29th, my dad went to the courthouse and talked with Sally Zeek. She told my dad that, she feels bad about the transcript errors, but has no idea how they could be tampered with. She said, she works for Judge Carpenter. He is her boss. She said, she asked Judge Carpenter about disclosing the audio tapes and he told her that he has never heard of anything like that, it's never been done. Dad told me that Ms. Zeek was inquisitive of how I knew the transcripts contained errors when it was only a matter of minutes that I telephoned her after leaving the courthouse. Dad informed her, he knows what he is looking for. The alterations are mostly done on CYS's testimony and the doctors. She reassured dad if I would pencil mark the transcript errors, she would be glad to check them out herself with the tapes.
On January 9th, 2001, I was contacted by Judge Carpenter's office notifying me that the transcripts of the remaining hearings were completed. On January 11th, I acquired those transcripts and soon discovered that the transcribed testimony was sabotaged. Like their predecessors, the transcripts were about 65% accurate. Primarily the testimonies from Children and Youth Services, the psychiatrists', and the psychologists, who testified in my custody hearings, were heavily targeted for tampering.
On January 11th, my brother and I went to the Blair County Court's prothonotary's office to review my custody case file. After examining the mountain of documents we discovered two photographs that were entered into the record were missing. One depicted my step-daughter in a sexually oriented pose and the other depicting my step-daughter wielding a butcher knife in a threatening pose. Both photographs were damaging to my wife, CYS and the mental health care providers.
On January 11th, I filed a Petition with the Blair County Court requesting that the transcripts be corrected and the hearing audio tapes of the hearing be disclosed to accomplish this. On January 17th, Judge Carpenter denied the disclosure of the audio tapes and directed that the case record be immediately forwarded to Superior Court with no corrections to be made to the transcripts.
Living this nightmare, I often ask myself what the motive might be that would cause a Blair County Court judge to alter public records and fabricate and destroy evidence of a judicial proceeding at the expense of a child's life. Why would he overlook the violent kidnapping of a child, the ensuing criminal conspiracy, judicial misconduct, systematic child abuse, CYS falsifying investigations, medical fraud, and fraudulently incarcerating a child in mental institutions?
In answering my own question to a motive why a judge would commit a crime of this nature brings to mind that: He might be burning his bridges to cover up his own negligence in the handling of this custody case. He may owe favors to affluent people, such as doctors, lawyers, or another judge who had been involved with this case. Several large mental health care institutions may offer pecuniary gratitude for him looking the other way. He could have been threatened with professional suicide or physical harm if he doesn't fulfill the wishes of people in higher authority. He could be severely mentally ill and felt a need to retaliate against me for my persistence to change the custody system. He could be protecting Blair County from a potential lawsuit instigated by Children and Youth Services' failure to protect a child from an abusive mother and a sick psychologist (Dr. Baker). He may just be biased against men winning custody of their children..
FURTHER AFFIANT SAYETH NAUGHT.
Affiant-Robert G. Kearns, Jr.
SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN TO BEFORE ME this ___________ day of
December, 2005, by Affiant ____________________________________.
Witness my hand and official seal. ______________________________________.
My commission expires: _______________