**********The City of Angels is Everywhere*********

Friday, June 29, 2007

Access still denied to public documents; a CHALLENGE to Church Attorneys; plus priest psych records are private, plaintiffs' aren't

By Kay Ebeling
Friday Roundup: If anyone thinks I’m not being fair and only portraying Church Attorneys doing stupid things, I want to make it clear. I’m reporting on what they are doing. If there were any legitimate logical legal arguments in any of their documents, I’d report it. Although this afternoon the ArcScanWeb was down once again so I wasn't able to look at anything. Once again as everyone else in Room 106 merrily viewed their screens, mine were all blank white or "access denied."

The blank white screens are the creepy ones. First time one of those came up was May 31st when I was trying to find a copy of Mahony’s subpoena or something briefed about it. I clicked a promising document, Java opened and -- a blank white screen. I felt a chill like Mahony's ethereal footprint. The entire month of June I'd say 80 percent of the times I went to the JCCP Documents it was Access Denied, and I’ve been document diving since January. Everything was seamless until ArcScanWeb, a private contractor hired to maintain the Clergy Cases documents did an upgrade May 31st, a week after Mahony’s subpoena.

Plus lately even when Church Attorneys do file documents, even the title does not show up in the public access database. In every hearing last week, the "papers filed by defendant" that created the hearing just were not in the database at all. The Calendar says Hearing based on papers filed by Defendant June 6 and when you go to look from June 4 to 9 there’s nothing there at all filed by defendant for that case.

So proud is the LA Archdiocese of the work of its 15 or so legal firms.

Would a Church Attorney please forward me a brief or a motion that makes a good case for the archdiocese?

Are you proud of your work?

I will glady write a balanced post saying here is the church’s side on this. Just give me a logical praiseworthy brief to read and I’ll report on it.

Instead it’s amazing how Mad Hatter the Clergy Cases have become. Remember last week’s rancor in court as Church Attorneys demanded more and more from plaintiffs about their psychiatry records? Well for Friday’s roundup I spent some time reading a document forwarded to me by a loyal reader.

Here Church Attorneys defend their right to keep accused and even convincted pedophile priests’ psychiatry records secret. So they can have free reign over plaintiffs' psych records but convicted pedophile priests can keep whatever they say to their psychiatrists secret.

For quotes from this brief see below.
But I'm serious. Anyone with an interesting brief, or motion, pertaining to these cases, please send them to my email, which is on the left under My Profile and in a couple other places.

I’d also like someone with credit card access to the documents to let me know if you are having the same Access Denied problem. I’d really like to know that.

I hope you enjoy reading this blog. It’s time for me to pass the Internet Hat. This blog paid my rent the last two months. The more I make from the blog, the less hours I have to spend transcribing. For more coverage of Clergy Cases 2007 hit the “Donate” button in the top left column.

It’s hard to see it now but the LA Archdiocese used to be rural, as recently as the 1970s. It stretched all the way from the Mexican border up through the inland desert, then from Fresno all the way to the beach. With the nationwide pattern of transferring pedophile priests to rural areas, Southern California was a virtual dumping ground.

Plus at least two Southern California seminaries were run by men with, well, sexual problems, who recruited young boys, groomed them, and turned them loose on the population as parish priests over a 20-year period.

It’s hard to believe Cardinal Mahony really wants these 15-plus jury trials to take place. Out of every document I’ve read in seven months of document diving I’ve yet to find any legitimate legal argument from the church for anything about anything.

The Catholic Church in LA needs to sell about half of its secular properties and establish a foundation for survivors of priest rape along with a heartfelt, sincere, genuine admission that something horrible took place and they're horribly responsible and now here are all the wonderful things we are going to do to make this up.

Anything short of a total turnaround in its approach to this problem will be institutional suicide. LA has an opportunity here to do something to save the church’s face, save the failing faith, by just saying, yes. We did this horrible thing. It wasn’t just a few priests here and there, it was a network of filth and disgusting life-ruining behavior that we let carry on in our properties for at least 50 years, maybe longer.


Brief filed by Church Attorneys in Santa Barbara totally contradicts what Church Attorneys say in Los Angeles

Considering that last week psychiatry records came up a lot in the Clergy Cases -- one case in Vermont became a mistrial after a Church Attorney grilled a plaintiff about his psychiatric records and Mahony’s attorneys in LA were demanding more acceess to plaintiffs’ psychiatrists’ notes, these arguments about how important it is to maintain the privacy of accused and convicted pedophile priests is particularly interesting.

Quotes From:
Objections to Public Disclosure of Private and Confidential Records

By Howie & Smith, LLP, in San Mateo, representing five perpetrator priests from the Santa Barbara Franciscans.

“Petitioner objects to the public release of documents relating to healthcare, including medical and mental health care treatment on the ground that these records are confidential and private and constitutionally protected from disclosure.”

“Confidential patient/physician/psychotherapist communications are protected by the Federal and California state rights to privacy. The constitutional right of privacy applies to a party’s medical and psychotherapeutic history. (cites a 1979 case)

“The right of privacy may even be invoked as a ground for refusal to answer questions that constitute an unreasonable intrusion upon that right.” (cites a 1989 case)

But even more twisted logic comes in when they argue that once a case is settled the need for documents from discovery is gone.

“With the settlement of these cases the purpose for the disclosure of these private and confidential records has been fulfilled, and cannot be extended to other purposes.”

To do that now would be “denying due process” to the perpetrators, say the Church Attorneys. In other words since they avoided prosecution and settled out of court, they can now avoid any disclosure of psychiatry records.

Remember, these psychiatry records pertain to criminal behavior. These same attorneys -- they all serve one client -- want to finger through every page written by a doctor about plaintiffs who are crime victims, while keeping those same documents about the crime perpetrators sacred, oh, I mean secret. . .

So do priests now have to reveal their personnel records even though they've settled out of court? So far the court ruled against it, but only in the Franciscans cases from Santa Barbara. The ruling from June 18th will likely be appealed and it does NOT apply to all 550 Clergy Cases.

Even though the LA Times article led you to think so.

I hope you enjoy reading this blog. It’s time for me to pass the Internet Hat. Please put a high five or more on my Pay-Pal Account so I can start feeling like a professional. The more I make from the blog, the less hours I have to spend transcribing. So to see more coverage of Clergy Cases 2007 hit the “Donate” button in the top left column.
PS I want to use PayPal money to get a video camera so I can start posting videos.

“That's only the Franciscans. What about the Jesuits?” asked my friend Tina re the post about privacy rights last week.

Another whole brotherhood of pedophiles in the Jesuits thrived in Santa Barbara at the same time as the Franciscans. I’m not sure where Judge Lichtman got the number of 41 in his ruling on the Franciscans.

It gets confusing. So many priests, so many parishes, so many predatory techniques.


Here is next two weeks’ calendar. All take place at 08:31 am in department 20 at 111 North Hill Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012 except Hagenbach cases Jury Trial begins July 9 at 9:30 AM PST.

From Superior Court website at http://www.lasuperiorcourt.org/civil/07/03/2007

Hearing on Demurrer (AND MOTION TO STRIKE(PAPERS FILED ON 6/07)RE: 03CC00698)

07/09/2007 at 09:30 am Jury Trial (HAGENBACH CASES)

07/10/2007 Motion for Protective Order ((PAPERS FILED ON 5/23)RE: BC307410)

07/10/2007 Motion for Sanctions ((PAPERS FILED ON 6/08)JOINDER BY PLAINTIFFS ON BC307917,BC308555, BC291941 AND 03AS04125RE: BC306507)

07/10/2007 Motion to Quash (SUMMONS AND COMPLAINT(PAPERS FILED ON 6/11)RE: BC307033)


07/11/2007Motion for Leave (TO ALLEGE PUNITIVE DAMAGES(PAPERS FILED ON 6/18)**cont to 7/18**RE: BC308301, BC308555 ANDBC338363)

(AGAIN: Would a reader with a credit card please go to that website and type in one of these documents and pay $4.95 to view it? I can’t do that right now. I want to see if documents are accessible to persons with credit cards and just not accessible in Room 106 of the courthouse. Type in any of those BC numbers and search for the “papers filed” re hearings next week, and see if you are able to see them. And if you can see them, copy them and forward them to me, please?)
I hope you enjoy reading this blog. It’s time for me to pass the Internet Hat. Please put a high five or more on my Pay-Pal Account so I can start feeling like a professional. The more I make from the blog, the less hours I have to spend transcribing. For more coverage of Clergy Cases 2007 hit the “Donate” button in the top left column.

This blog paid my rent in June and July 2007. The crisis is past, the transcription work is back. But the more the blog makes, the less hours I need to spend transcribing.

There’s going to be a big story here, even if all the LA Cases settle next week. So I’ll keep the Pay-Pal button up there and you can push my button just to send me a high five anytime. Onward--ke

Meantime this weekend I’ll be buried in tapes: from "40 Crimes of Fashion" for E! and oh my god, it never fails. One of the jobs I have to do this weekend is an interview with a bishop. . . hope it’s a Baptist.

More to Come. . .

1 comment:

hrh said...

"It’s hard to believe Cardinal Mahony really wants these 15-plus jury trials to take place."

This is the bish club's worst nightmare, to have to testilie, I mean, testify. Why do you think soooo many of these cases are settled immediately before trial begins? Being forced to release all those incriminating documents is bad enough, but to force a bish or (Horrors!) card to answer questions under oath is beyond the pale. In the few occasiions it has actually happened, the guy's credibility goes down the drain and he is exposed as an arrogant, heartless hypocrite who's only concern is to maintain his cushy lifestyle, and couldn't care less about children being raped by his minions.