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Schiavo lawyers challenge 'Terri's Law'
AP | 10/29/03

Posted on 10/29/2003 2:20:27 PM PST by kattracks

CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) — A hastily passed state law that empowered Gov. Jeb Bush to keep a severely brain-damaged woman alive is unconstitutional, attorneys for the woman's husband claimed Wednesday.

In a court filing, attorneys for Michael Schiavo challenged what Florida lawmakers dubbed "Terri's Law," which gave Bush the authority to order Terri Schiavo's feeding tube be reinserted Oct. 21. They asked that the law be overturned.

The filing's major contentions are that the law violates Terri Schiavo's right to privacy under the Florida Constitution and the separation of power provisions of the state constitution.

Michael Schiavo has been battling in court for years to carry out what he says is his wife's wish to not be kept alive artificially.

His in-laws, Bob and Mary Schindler, have fought him, saying their daughter had no such wishes and is not in a permanent vegetative state, as a probate judge has declared. They say she is responsive and could improve with therapy.



TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: righttodeath; righttolife; schiavo; schindler; terri; terrisbill; terrischiavo
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1 posted on 10/29/2003 2:20:28 PM PST by kattracks
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To: kattracks
Bottom line: Terri Shiavo has no right to due process of law. Her husband's convenience comes first.
2 posted on 10/29/2003 2:21:57 PM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: goldstategop
what is happening with the criminal investigations at this point.....anything??
3 posted on 10/29/2003 2:29:25 PM PST by pollywog (Psalm 121;1 I Lift mine eyes to the hills from whence cometh my help.)
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To: kattracks
Good for him, this is not a state battle...he has legal gaurdianship....this is his family choice
4 posted on 10/29/2003 2:29:46 PM PST by Legerdemain (The GodSquad, The worst of the Thought Police)
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To: kattracks
Is the ACLU involved?
5 posted on 10/29/2003 2:32:11 PM PST by Mamzelle
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To: kattracks
Medicare to expand

The Schiavo controversy prompted Sen. Bill Nelson to announce Tuesday that he plans to introduce legislation that will expand Medicare to cover a single doctor's visit during which end-of-life treatments can be discussed.

The bill also would require the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to develop a $25-million public education campaign "alerting adults of all ages about their health care options should they not be able to communicate." It would be modeled after similar education campaigns about organ donation.


6 posted on 10/29/2003 2:34:27 PM PST by george wythe
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To: kattracks
We should name their motions, "Duty to Die Law."
7 posted on 10/29/2003 2:34:55 PM PST by OpusatFR (The leftwing lies because the truth would kill them all off.)
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To: Legerdemain
You don't know a hell of lot about this case, do you?

BTW...welcome to FR

FMCDH

8 posted on 10/29/2003 2:35:02 PM PST by nothingnew (The pendulum is swinging and the Rats are in the pit!)
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To: Legerdemain
"His family" now consists of another woman, a child and another one on the way. Terri's family is her parents and siblings who love her and have reason to believe that she is responsive and alert and deserves to live.
9 posted on 10/29/2003 2:36:09 PM PST by stanz (Those who don't believe in evolution should go jump off the flat edge of the Earth.)
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To: stanz
I believe his other baby was born last week, the latest thing is that he also has another child from another relationship and is paying child support for that one.
10 posted on 10/29/2003 2:43:25 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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To: Legerdemain
You might find this article interesting, since it anticipates some of the legal arguments of the case.

Since Jonathan Turley wrote the article for the LA Times, we can only post excerpts:

The framers of the Constitution understood that the test of any democratic system would be its ability to restrain, not satisfy, the majority. Much of the Constitution is designed to combat the evil of majoritarian terror -- the tyranny of the majority over those who are unpopular or underrepresented. For this reason, the framers rejected a pure democratic model and instead embraced the model of a republic containing the doctrine of separation of powers, including an independent judiciary.

The Schiavo controversy was anticipated by the framers, who warned of the natural inclination of politicians to intervene in individual cases. James Madison, for instance, criticized state politicians for altering "rights which should have been left to judicial controversy."


11 posted on 10/29/2003 2:43:58 PM PST by george wythe
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To: pickyourpoison
Really, how come the media didn't publicize the birth of the second child? I heard about the first baby from another relationship, but I didn't know whether it was true or not. This guy really gets around. And we're supposed to believe how much he loves Terri.
12 posted on 10/29/2003 2:48:12 PM PST by stanz (Those who don't believe in evolution should go jump off the flat edge of the Earth.)
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To: stanz
I've wondering the same thing. I'd like to know the age of the other child. I'd like to know if that child was born before or after this happened to Terri.
13 posted on 10/29/2003 3:02:08 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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To: Legerdemain
Nice tagline

BTW, you need to go further than some blanket condemnation about religion in this case. This ruling has the potential to define what is human consciousness, when life is no longer of value, and places the value of utility on a human that could be very bad for the disabled and aged.

I can see a future when Medicare and Social Security are insolvent and running deficits, where monetary values are placed on people and they are judged a burden on society. We can assign ICD codes to them: 003.20 not oriented to three spheres, no communication, 002.98 incontinent, blind, deaf, immobile.

And then, we can convene panels who the fitness of life and then order termination.
BTW, the first example is Alzheimers. The second is a lady who is a bright incredible person.

Argue against religion? Fine. But use some practicality and extrapolate this action.
14 posted on 10/29/2003 3:03:30 PM PST by OpusatFR (The leftwing lies because the truth would kill them all off.)
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To: pickyourpoison
The more you probe, the more dirt comes out. This guy Schiavo is a mother's worst nightmare.
15 posted on 10/29/2003 3:03:46 PM PST by stanz (Those who don't believe in evolution should go jump off the flat edge of the Earth.)
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To: OpusatFR
"And then, we can convene panels who the fitness of life and then order termination."

That's ..who decide the fitness...

Welcome to FR
16 posted on 10/29/2003 3:05:02 PM PST by OpusatFR (The leftwing lies because the truth would kill them all off.)
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To: george wythe
" the evil of majoritarian terror"

How does the evil of the majoritarian terror that presents itself in this case measure up to the evil of the perjured medical testimony at the trial? How does the majoritarian terror exerted in this case to protect Terri's rights measure up to the abandonment and isolation the husband placed this woman in. In his role as guardian of his wife's right's he has demonstrated no commitment to them, but only to his own rights and interests.

You know what-you don't leave a dog in solitary for 12+ years while you're trying to get permission to kill him. The fact is that is just what "the loving husband" Mikey boy did to his wife.

17 posted on 10/29/2003 3:12:46 PM PST by spunkets
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To: Legerdemain
An evil money-grubbing monster is not supposed to be appointed as a legal guardian for a vulnerable disabled person. Furthermore, it's against the law to starve and withhold water from farm animals. By the way, Michael Schiavo is living with another woman and has impregnated her twice (apparently). He's not her husband anymore in the real sense.
18 posted on 10/29/2003 3:16:50 PM PST by Saundra Duffy (For victory & freedom!!!)
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To: All
And hes proud to have 2 women to love, Hey! Ladies, how many of you would be proud to know your man/spouse/significant other loves someone else just as much as you...it grosses me out...PUKE!!

I wonder what Terri's reaction would be to this madness, I wonder if shes consider a divorce? or she'd be proud of her philandering husband. Yes the second child was born last week, I wonder if he was planning to celebrate a death and birth the same week. Interesting time frame.

I also was surprized to hear that he has no plans to marry Jodi Centonze? they'r happy with things the way it is....Interesting indeed.....I guess thats what some people would do for $$$$$$$ sad day in the world.

Did anyone come to the conclusion the reason why Michael Schiavo is proud to have the 2 women in his life ........ONE TO KILL AND THE OTHER TO THRILL.

Did you see how cold hearted he seemed during the interview with LK? As though things were fine. It was awesome that he goofed up on the questions about doing a lie detector test and the one that if CNN could send in a camera....

Think folks...please watch all interviews with MS and the Schindlers who are very loyal, dedicated, and want the best for their precious child just natural for any parent. The number of years they have waged this battle and spent their life savings on getting their daughter the treatment she needs which the money was given for.

The schindlers are going to be interviewed on Montel this week, I hear.

Please call the senators, House of reps, Governor Bush and President Bush and explain/support/encourage them how you feel and how you know the "Terris law" must stay and that all handicap people must be protected and not executed because they are not 100% capable of working and doing everything some other people are capable of.

Lets all pray this Judicial tyranny will soon end and we soon will get to meet Terri Schindler in person whose smile would just warms each and everyones heart that has fought/prayed for her and all other handicap people of America.

Michael works at Morton Plant Mease in Clearwater, so watch out for the nursing care your loved one may receive..in his custody.

ALso folks please don't let your loved ones go to HOSPICE as they will hasten your loved ones death.

Also the person that posted the fact the MS has a child by some other female other than Jodi Centonze, email me and give me any more details that you may have on this scum bag.

Its (he)just keeps getting dirtier and dirtier.

19 posted on 10/29/2003 3:16:51 PM PST by tomniris (Is michael schiavo a wicked man(I pray he finds peace in the Lord Jesus Christ real soon))
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To: Legerdemain
"this is his family choice"

By law it is Terri's choice. There has been no effort to get her input on this by the court, or the court recognized guardian. In fact the the docs lied about Terri's condiiton to enable the abandonment, isolation and death of this woman.

20 posted on 10/29/2003 3:17:12 PM PST by spunkets
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To: stanz
I can't help but wonder if his "new family" realizes that when he tires of them, they could end up just like Terri.

21 posted on 10/29/2003 3:17:21 PM PST by MizSterious (First, the journalists, THEN the lawyers.)
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To: kattracks
the law violates Terri Schiavo's right to privacy under the Florida Constitution

Is that like the "right to privacy" in the US Constitution? I.e., a figment of a fragment of a shade of a penumbra?

22 posted on 10/29/2003 3:18:07 PM PST by shhrubbery!
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To: pickyourpoison
the latest thing is that he also has another child from another relationship and is paying child support for that one.

Was that child fathered before the Terri "accident" or after? I'll bet the mother of that child might have something to say about all of this . . . unless her child support payments depend on Terri's continued abuse.

23 posted on 10/29/2003 3:19:25 PM PST by Saundra Duffy (For victory & freedom!!!)
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To: tomniris
"ALso folks please don't let your loved ones go to HOSPICE as they will hasten your loved ones death."

This case brings up some righteous anger, but I have to disagree vehemently with your statement. Hospice and hospice workers are not angels of death. Please don't make a blanket statement like that.
24 posted on 10/29/2003 3:21:51 PM PST by OpusatFR (The leftwing lies because the truth would kill them all off.)
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To: MizSterious
Yes, I wouldn't turn my back on him if I were Jody Centonze.
25 posted on 10/29/2003 3:27:57 PM PST by stanz (Those who don't believe in evolution should go jump off the flat edge of the Earth.)
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To: Saundra Duffy
I don't have any info on the other child, I read about it a few days ago on another Terri thread.
26 posted on 10/29/2003 3:27:57 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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To: MizSterious
Consider this. Michael was on LKL and made this a statement about how "There was no insurance policy on Terri that he would collect when she died".

Funny, no one asked about that. Guilty conscious, preempting questions?

Here's the info he didn't mention. His girlfriend works at an insurance company.

After Terri dead, and (if my guess is true) Michael collects, then he no longer needs his current girlfriend, she cannot collect child support or alimony. Isn't that nice?

27 posted on 10/29/2003 3:30:34 PM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: george wythe
James Madison, for instance, criticized state politicians for altering "rights which should have been left to judicial controversy."

Yes, but that was before the founders realized the judiciary would become a cadre of black-robed tyrants.

Hamilton wrote in the Federalist 78 the judiciary was the least of the branches to be feared, since judges could exercise neither will nor power.

Little did he know of how judges would exercise their will, and actually make law from the bench.

Little did he know of the judicial usurpations that were was to come: Roe v. Wade...Doe v. Bolton...Gratz v. Michigan...Lawrence v. Texas...etc. etc.

28 posted on 10/29/2003 3:31:59 PM PST by shhrubbery!
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To: kattracks
I got this form-email today from Johnnie Byrd, Speaker of the Florida House:

Thank you for contacting me to express your concerns regarding Terri Schiavo. I value your input on this important matter.

During the past year, the Florida House has faced difficult choices in many areas. We have crafted legislation regarding the budget, healthcare, workers’ compensation, and prescription drug relief for Floridians. Presently, legislation is being considered to address the victims of legal dehydration and starvation deaths.

Every Floridian has a right to determine their own treatment, and anyone who has executed an advanced directive has the right to have his or her instructions carried out. Where there is no disagreement among family members, present law does not appear to create reasons for legislative intervention. However, the Terri Schiavo case raises troubling concerns that the proposed legislation would address.

The bill passed by the House in Special Session “E” on Monday night would allow the Governor to issue a moratorium to stop contested legal dehydration and starving deaths in Florida in certain instances. The moratorium would give the Legislature time to assess our current law.

With our pledge to protect the most vulnerable, I strongly believe that someone needs to be a voice for the voiceless like Terri Schiavo.

Again, thank you for contacting me. I will take your comments to heart and give them careful consideration as we address the issue of contested legal dehydration and starvation cases.

Very truly yours,
Johnnie Byrd
Speaker


29 posted on 10/29/2003 3:40:01 PM PST by shhrubbery!
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To: spunkets
Thank you for sharing your opinion.

I don't buy any of your "facts."

In my humble opinion, both the law and the facts on the side of Judge Greer, the Second District Court of Appeals, the Florida Supreme Court and the US Supreme Court.

And if the highest court of the land upholds this 15-day-shelf-life law, created especially to overcome a judicial outcome, then the law will be on the side of the Schindlers.

What will happen the next time there is another Terri Schiavo in Florida? Will the legislature pass another special law?

What will happen when a new governor is elected? Will the new governor lift the stay on Terri Schiavo?

"Terri's Law" did not fit the systemic problem in Florida, nor saved Terri's life indefinately, even if upheld by the highest court.

Both Floridians and Terri deserve finality on this issue.

30 posted on 10/29/2003 3:43:56 PM PST by george wythe
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To: MizSterious
I can't help but wonder if his "new family" realizes that when he tires of them, they could end up just like Terri.

I read 'reports' from Terri's friends that said he was very controling. After reading about the girlfriend doing Terri's laundry and the girlfriend's mother standing guard....I think I believe these 'reports'. I've been there, done that...just different circumstances.

31 posted on 10/29/2003 3:46:05 PM PST by Krodg (I believe, I pray and I fight.)
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To: shhrubbery!
Great letter written by the legislator.
32 posted on 10/29/2003 3:46:29 PM PST by Saundra Duffy (For victory & freedom!!!)
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To: stanz
Terri should have chosen a better spouse. It's too bad he didn't find the girlfriend, and not Terri. It sounds like he and the girlfriend are two peas in a pod.
33 posted on 10/29/2003 3:49:13 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: UCANSEE2
His girlfriend works at an insurance company.

I knew Terri had worked for an insurance co. but didn't know about the girlfriend. Do you have a source?

34 posted on 10/29/2003 3:50:41 PM PST by Krodg (I believe, I pray and I fight.)
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To: UCANSEE2
Don't you think she would get child support?
35 posted on 10/29/2003 3:54:29 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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To: george wythe
This has not just happened to Terri. There's many cases like this that we didn't hear about. Terri's case has made national news, others haven't. Put the name "Hugh Finn" or "Marjorie Nighbert" in your search engine and read their stories.
36 posted on 10/29/2003 4:00:24 PM PST by pickyourpoison
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To: pickyourpoison
Judy has no rights. She is not married to Michael.

When asked if Michael and Judy had plans to marry after Terri dies, Michael stated, "WE (meaning he) like things just the way they are"

37 posted on 10/29/2003 4:09:18 PM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Terri was supposed to have been very shy. This was probably her first love. When you're young and in love, it's easy to miss certain alarm bells. This guy is also very smooth. She probably never had a chance until it was too late.
38 posted on 10/29/2003 4:09:36 PM PST by stanz (Those who don't believe in evolution should go jump off the flat edge of the Earth.)
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To: Krodg
I will see if I can find where I read that bit of info, and will ping you if I find it. It was on one of these threads.<
39 posted on 10/29/2003 4:10:36 PM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: kattracks
There was a rumor that Michael was in hiding because of all the death threats he is getting. He must be terrified and getting very paranoid by now. Does he play lurking games or post troll-like comments on FR?
40 posted on 10/29/2003 4:11:23 PM PST by ex-Texan (Reuters Deserves a Long Double Flush . . . Pull the Chain!)
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To: ex-Texan
"There was a rumor that Michael was in hiding because of all the death threats he is getting."

Who knows if he is actually getting death threats and is in hiding.

One of the threads said he was seen at an upscale mall shopping while he was 'supposedly' in hiding.

41 posted on 10/29/2003 4:15:10 PM PST by LADY J
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To: UCANSEE2
After Terri dead, and (if my guess is true) Michael collects, then he no longer needs his current girlfriend, she cannot collect child support or alimony. Isn't that nice?

No he's still responsible for his children. Whatever scum he may be the children are innocent. They deserve to be financially supported, but not at the expense of Terri.

42 posted on 10/29/2003 4:25:59 PM PST by CajunConservative
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To: stanz
I suppose that is why parents pray that their children will chose Godly spouses.
43 posted on 10/29/2003 4:30:30 PM PST by Pan_Yans Wife (You may forget the one with whom you have laughed, but never the one with whom you have wept.)
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To: pickyourpoison
Jeepers! didn't know that. Thought he had child with present girlfriend and one on the way. where did you get he was paying child support for one more?
44 posted on 10/29/2003 4:31:45 PM PST by texaslil
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To: spunkets
yeah right.......first, the law is a sham and will be thrown out by the court system. Second, It seem's that Terri's familys "expert" witness is not only a liar, but a fraud...

Get a grip.....Her husband is her legal gaurdian and has the right to honor her wishes by taking out the tube.....
45 posted on 10/29/2003 4:52:25 PM PST by Legerdemain (The GodSquad, The worst of the Thought Police)
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To: Krodg; MizSterious; NYer; bvw; All
I haven't found where I read that Judy was working at an insurance company. I know I read it though.

But, in searching the links, I found some very interesting things for those that insist TERRI IS BRAINDEAD, that TERRI CANT AND NEVER COULD COMMUNICATE HER WISHES. They are totally mistaken.

And Michael is the biggest liar of them all.

HERE IS THE THREAD One of the Terri Threads

Schindler lived in the same St. Petersburg apartment complex as his sister and brother-in-law in 1990. He says Michael Schiavo knew CPR but did not perform it the night Terri collapsed and was deprived of oxygen for 10 minutes. Schindler said his family and their doctors suspect Terri Schiavo was beaten and suffered brain damage.

Caplan pointed out that courts have consistently ruled in favor of Michael Schiavo even though his wife's parents and siblings have alleged he abused her.

"Look at the evidence," he said. "They keep coming back and saying, no, he's not in it for life insurance; he's not in it because he doesn't care for her.

BEFORE ME the undersigned authority personally appeared CARLA SAUER IYER, R.N., who being first duly sworn, deposes and says:

1. My name is Carla Sauer Iyer. I am over the age of eighteen and make this statement of my own personal knowledge.

7. Terri's medical condition was systematically distorted and misrepresented by Michael. When I worked with her, she was alert and oriented. Terri spoke on a regular basis while in my presence, saying such things as "mommy," and "help me." "Help me" was, in fact, one of her most frequent utterances. I heard her say it hundreds of times. Terri would try to say the word "pain" when she was in discomfort, but it came out more like "pay." She didn't say the "n" sound very well. During her menses she would indicate her discomfort by saying "pay" and moving her arms toward her lower abdominal area. Other ways that she would indicate that she was in pain included pursing her lips, grimacing, thrashing in bed, curling her toes or moving her legs around. She would let you know when she had a bowel movement by flipping up the covers and pulling on her diaper and scooted in bed on her bottom.

9. Throughout my time at Palm Gardens, Michael Schiavo was focused -4- on Terri's death. Michael would say "When is she going to die?," "Has she died yet?" and "When is that bitch gonna die?" These statements were common knowledge at Palm Gardens, as he would make them casually in passing, without regard even for who he was talking to, as long as it was a staff member. Other statements which I recall him making include "Can't anything be done to accelerate her death - won't she ever die?" When she wouldn't die, Michael would be furious.

Michael was also adamant that the family should not be given information. He made numerous statements such as "Make sure the parents aren't contacted." I recorded Michael's statements word for word in Terri's chart, but these entries were also deleted after the end of my shift.

10. Any time Terri would be sick, like with a UTI or fluid buildup in her lungs, colds, or pneumonia, Michael would be visibly excited, thrilled even, hoping that she would die. He would say something like, -5- "Hallelujah! You've made my day!" He would call me, as I was the nurse supervisor on the floor, and ask for every little detail about her temperature, blood pressure, etc., and would call back frequently asking if she was dead yet. He would blurt out "I'm going to be rich!" and would talk about all the things he would buy when Terri died, which included a new car, a new boat, and going to Europe, among other things.

(AND FINALLY, THE MOST DAMNING, to ME, AND WHAT I SUSPECTED MAY HAVE BEEN HAPPENING, IN ADDITION TO BEING BEATEN WHICH IS WHERE THE BONE FRACTURES CAME FROM)

11. When Michael visited Terri, he always came alone and always had the door closed and locked while he was with Terri. He would typically be there about twenty minutes or so. When he left Terri would be trembling, crying hysterically, and would be very pale and have cold sweats. It looked to me like Terri was having a hypoglycemic reaction, so I'd check her blood sugar. The glucometer reading would be so low it was below the range where it would register an actual number reading. I would put dextrose in Terri's mouth to counteract it. This happened about five times on my shift, as I recall. Normally Terri's blood sugar levels were very stable due to the uniformity of her diet through tube feeding. It is medically possible that Michael injected Terri with Regular insulin, which is very fast acting, but I don't have -6- any way of knowing for sure.

THIS is likely why Michael really trained to be a nurse. So he could find out what to use to KILL HIS WIFE, and attempt to escape detection.

46 posted on 10/29/2003 4:54:42 PM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: Saundra Duffy
In the obituary for Michael's mother, Michael's girlfriend was named as his fiancee. Terrie was not mentioned.
47 posted on 10/29/2003 4:57:20 PM PST by ladyjane
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To: Legerdemain
IT would be interesting if you bothered to investigate the truth of this case.

There is sworn testimony to the fact the Michael is an attempted murderer. I know, you only believe the sworn testimony of Michael, His brother and sister-in-law, and anyone that agrees with you.

Anyone else, like the staff at the Hospice, her parents, Qualified and well known doctors who disagree with the QUACK Michael used, who is part of the SUNCOAST HOSPICE KILLEM AND TAKE THEIR MONEY plan, can't be believed. Is that pretty much your attitude?

48 posted on 10/29/2003 4:58:20 PM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: pickyourpoison
Last year, by court order, Hugh Finn - husband, father, son and human being - was starved to death at Annaburg Manor Nursing Home in Manassas.

Hugh suffered brain injury in a 1995 auto accident in Kentucky, where he'd been a TV newsman. Some doctors, not all, said he was in a persistent vegetative state - unable to communicate. Under Virginia law, he was dehydrated to death.

But Hugh wanted to live, and he conveyed that to his parents and their attorney. With no "living will," he needed only food, water and comfort to live. He wasn't on "life support," and there's ample evidence he could communicate and make his wishes known.
Hugh's parents and brothers helped care for him. At least one of them visited him every day. Indeed, that's why he'd been moved here from Kentucky.

And when Hugh's wife, Michele, still living in Kentucky, said she would stop her husband's feeding, his family freed her of any further burden in his case; they'd take all responsibility for his care, costing her nothing in money or time.

Regardless, Hugh's wife ordered his feeding stopped.

With no where to else to turn after losing a court case, Hugh's family - including his parents and brothers in the 13th legislative district and, significantly, Michele Finn's own mother and sister - appealed to Del. Bob Marshall for help.

Eight members of Hugh's immediate family (not including spouses) wanted him to live; to have a chance to recover.

They sought help from Bob Marshall, and later from Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore, to save Hugh from court- authorized removal of his food and water. And to live is what Hugh, himself, wanted.

"After his wife announced she was going to terminate him," Tom Finn, Hugh's father, said, "I sat and told him that she was going to put him to death. He pinched his face up and brought both arms up and shivered, then both legs picked up, and he moaned very load."

Last summer, Bob Diamond, the Finn's attorney, whose wife is a doctor, saw Hugh at Annaburg Manor with Hugh's parents, a brother and Michele Finn's sister.

"I explained to Hugh that I was there to try to stop Michele from withdrawing the feeding tube from him," Diamond said. "I then asked Hugh if he wanted me to fight to keep his feeding tube, and he nodded his head 'yes'.... It appeared to me that Hugh was not in a persistent vegetative state."

Virginia law forbids "any deliberate act or omission to end life other than to permit the natural process of dying." [Virginia Code 54.1-2990] Yet, a Prince William County judge permitted Hugh's fatal starvation. Withdrawal of food and water, may be challenged "on petition of any person to the circuit court." [Virginia Code 54.1-2986].

Gov. Gilmore went to court on Hugh's behalf because Virginia law mandates "the Governor may institute a law suit to protect ... citizens ... where he shall have determined that existing legal procedures fail to adequately protect existing legal rights and interests of such citizens."

Bob Marshall told Virginia's Health Secretary, a shunt draining fluid from Hugh's brain hadn't been checked; that a 1996 examination showed it might be blocked. But last year, Hugh's wife refused to let a doctor examine the shunt.

A doctor's failure to fix a blocked shunt can be medical malpractice. Dr. Paul Byrne, an expert Virginia court witness, said a blocked shunt could've prevented Hugh from communicating.

Dr. Byrne, asked by Virginia Attorney General Mark Early's office to examine Hugh's medical records, said Hugh wasn't "vegetative." He found Other News

documented instances of Hugh communicating with gestures and actually talking.

In early 1996, when Hugh was brought to Manassas, he was considered a "good" rehabilitation candidate. He talked occasionally and completed songs his dad sang. He responded to nurses. Medical records and health workers verified his ability to communicate.

Last fall, Hugh's wife claimed on ABC's Good Morning America her husband hadn't communicated at all since his 1995 accident. Yet seven Important Phone Numbers...

weeks after that accident, she told a Louisville news conference her husband was awake and talking!

A Virginia state nurse examined Hugh at Annaburg Manor just before his death.

"I then went around the bed and faced Mr. Finn," she testified under oath in court. "I said, 'Hi.' And he immediately responded with 'Hi.' ...[He] did not look the same as other chronic vegetative patients... It was in his care plan up until [June 1998] that there was a system for saying 'yes' or 'no' by putting his hand to his forehead."

The judge denied Hugh's parents access to their son's medical records. He refused to let them present testimony by their own medical experts; or to take Michele's deposition under oath; or to get a "second opinion" on Hugh's condition.

Instead, the judge accepted the claims of three doctors hired by Michele Finn that Hugh was in a persistent vegetative state.

One of Michele's doctors could not recall if Hugh felt pain during tests, and he had nothing in writing about whether Hugh's responsiveness changed during the tests.

Michele's second doctor said he saw Hugh twice in 12 months, but de didn't review Finn's medical records for the court hearing, nor could he tell what drug dosages Hugh received.

Michele's third doctor, with 150+ nursing-home patients and more than 1000 patient files in her office, didn't bring Hugh's medical records to the hearing, and she had difficulty with questions about Hugh's medical history. She was unsure if Hugh was on communication-aiding medication; nor was she aware some patients actually recover even after years in such condition; nor had she examined Hugh on a regular basis.

So Hugh Finn died - not from injury, but by court-authorized starvation - and his parents were fined $17,452 for his wife's and guardian's legal fees. This is justice in Virginia?
49 posted on 10/29/2003 4:59:28 PM PST by GeekDejure (<H3> Searching For The Meaning Of "Huge" Fonts !!!</H3>)
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To: Saundra Duffy
An evil money-grubbing monster is not supposed to be appointed as a legal guardian for a vulnerable disabled person. Furthermore, it's against the law to starve and withhold water from farm animals. By the way, Michael Schiavo is living with another woman and has impregnated her twice (apparently). He's not her husband anymore in the real sense.

He is her husband, thus legally her guardian...as for the rest.....who cares....just because you don't like it does not make it untrue......

50 posted on 10/29/2003 4:59:28 PM PST by Legerdemain (The GodSquad, The worst of the Thought Police)
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