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Tuesday, November 3, 2020

St. Louis County Courts Target Women



I have spoken with approximately ten people who describe an atmosphere in St. Louis County courts where due process is routinely violated, bias is shown, dogma is favored over facts, and this targeting is primarily against women. 

Patty Fish

Find an interview with Fish below.  

Fish tells an amazing story in which her ex-husband forged her signature on multiple mortgage loan documents on a property she owned herself- this property even had a spousal waiver- but this loan was still allowed to go through and numerous Missouri courts- including at least one Appeals Court- found against her. 

In fact, Christine Bertelson, the Missouri courts public affairs officer, told me as much about this case, "{Fish's ex} and Patricia Fish were defendants in the mortgage case. Judgment was entered on 12/12/18 against both defendants after a multi-day bench trial. The judge made a number of findings of fact. See 13SL-CC03334. The court of appeals affirmed at 600 SW3d 273."

Fish tells me that her ex-husband was charged criminally but, after a five year court process was found not guilty and that not guilty verdict was used as leverage against her in lawsuits.

Fish also tells me that the judge who presided over his criminal trial, Judge Nancy Watkins McLoughlin, also presided over one of her civil trials. 

Judge McLoughlin determined that Fish's ex-husband had been given authority based on a few emails and purported phone calls even though the Missouri statute is clear that it requires a formal power of attorney. 

Find Fish's summary of the case below.

Nightmare in St Louis Count... by mikekvolpe

Fish's case has one more interesting tidbit, the appearance of Elaine Pudlowski, who was Fish's ex-husband's divorce attorney. 

Fish told me it was Pudlowski who initially told him to say that Patty somehow authorized him to make this loan. 

Pudlowski comes up numerous times; she declined to comment when I reached her by email. 

Pudlowski and 50/50

In this interview below, listen to one woman describe how her child made disclosures that her ex was molesting them. Pudlowski became the GAL in 2017. This woman said a previous GAL had already been threatened by another GAL that any more disclosures could lead to her losing custody. Full interview below.  
"She hired a custody evaluator for the case. She gave this custody evaluator all the information on the parties. She picked and chose what she decided to hand to him. There was a CAC that was taking place with my child in a  DSS investigation." This woman said. "She watched a video of  my son disclose in full detail because he was a lot older at the time, about what was happening to him, and she turned around in the courtroom and stated her opinion rather than the professional who does this for a living."

The Lawsuit

Pudlowski is also a defendant in a recently filed lawsuit. 

I received a fair amount of communication about this lawsuit; this included a press release from a group calling itself Daily Docket News which stated in part, 

It has been a national scandal for decades in which family courts systematically failed to protect our minor children from physical, emotional, and/or sexual abuse by predatory parents. What is equally scandalous is the silence on the coverage of this unimaginable issue. Daily Docket News is dedicated to shine light on the grave injustices taking place in the family court “Swamp”, in the State of Missouri.

Daily Docket News is investigating the allegations raised by Tolu vs. James D. Reid, Ph.D., Elaine Pudlowski, Esq. & Jennifer Webbe Van Luven, LCSW, et al.Case No. 20SL-CC04680 filed in the Saint Louis County Circuit Court. A scandal appears to be brewing in this case, where Tolu, a former child custody litigant, is suing the court appointed forensic evaluator, James D. Reid, Ph.D. with the firm of James D. Reid, Ph.D., LLC, the court appointed guardian ad litem, Elaine Pudlowski, Esq. with the law firm of Frankel, Rubin, Klein, Siegel, Payne & Pudlowski, P.C. and the court appointed therapist, Jennifer Webbe Van Luven, LCSW with West County Psychological Associates. It is alleged that all three are involved in a horrific scheme, “Kids for Cash”, that benefited a predatory parent and exploited vulnerable minor children.

The full lawsuit is below. 


Tolu v. Reid et al by mikekvolpe

Pudlowski is accused of not following proper protocols, not completing her work, and other malfeasance. 

As with other cases, abuse was allegedly covered up in this case. 

I reached out to the attorney representing the plaintiff and he provided a statement. Part of it is below. 

When we hear horrific stories of children being separated from their parents at the border, my heart bleeds. We commend people for trying to feed and find relatives and family members for the children in distress at our borders. We hear these stories every day. There is a lot of attention given to the social injustice surrounding the children separated from their parents. 

These heart-breaking stories immediately take me to my personal story. My children were not taken away from me at the border. My children were taken away from me by the Saint Louis Family Court and with absolutely no factual basis. I do not drink and am not an alcoholic. I do not do drugs and am not a drug addict. I do not have a criminal record. I work seven days a week. I pay my taxes. I volunteer at church. I donate to the food pantry. I help elderly who are frail or who have no family members around to help them with daily necessities like translating their letters from Russian to English, writing letters for them in English, taking them to a doctor, calling a nurse for them, taking them to a grocery store, running to a pharmacy, or helping to fix their internet or telephone issues. I volunteer for two nonprofits.

Find the full statement below. 

 

Tolu Personal Statement 10-... by mikekvolpe

I interviewed several other people, some of who also had Pudlowski, but they did not name her.

50/50

One other theme I heard was that St. Louis courts adhered to the 50/50 dogma. 50/50 or shared parenting argues that the best custody arrangement is for parents who split to share custody equally. With that, child support is often not required. 

This dogma often ignores abuse. It was something I described in my 2015 article Making Divorce Pay.

All proponents of equal parenting always make a caveat for cases of abuse, but the climate created by other AFCC-supported theories makes proving abuse nearly impossible.

Take Charles Paclik’s divorce, which started in Illinois in 2006. After his ex-wife moved to California, the jurisdiction for the divorce moved with her. He didn’t see his two children for more than three years from 2007-2010 at the behest of the court, and four AFCC-trained social workers: Lucinda Beall, Laura Wittenberg, Stuart Lord, and Mary Jo Dierickx. Then his 14-year-old son from a previous marriage testified in court that his stepmother was physically abusing him and his two half-brothers. After that testimony, the court ruled Paclik and his ex-wife should have shared parenting. He lost primary contact with his children again after his wife’s move to an adjacent county in 2013 triggered another custody fight. Paclik’s custody continues to be litigated nine years after it began.

Below, listen to one St. Louis County woman describe how her ex-husband was convicted of a crime similar to child endangerment but then she was forced into a 50/50 arrangement.  

I asked Ms. Bertelson about this tendency on settling on 50/50 and she replied, "I cannot comment on blanket assertions about the court."

Other Victims

I spoke with several other victims as well. Below is a two part interview with another St. Louis County woman who lost custody after bringing forward child molestation allegations. 


 

 Hazardous Drugs 

In this story, a St. Louis County woman describes how she was possibly exposed to hazardous chemicals and this was covered up.

"My case was turned around based on a psychological evaluation that was done and everything was focused on mental health and all of the facts were completely dismissed. The psychological evaluation was fabricated, not based on the actual evaluation data, but based on my exes hearsay. I was then diagnosed with a mental disorder, which became the focus of the case."

She was diagnosed with delusional disorder, arguing that she was making up the allegations that she was exposed to hazardous chemicals. 

Find the whole interview below. 
 
More Child Molestation Disclosures Covered Up

In this interview, another St. Louis woman describes how she brought forward child molestation allegations only to have the courts cover them up. 

 
 
A Man Speaks

I also spoke with a man who described how the court catered to his ex-wife and ignored how his child began to devolve after being forced to move schools. 



Post Script

This is the second of four articles I'm doing in conjunction with a new organization entitled FIRST4. FIRST4 hopes to build software which would make activists aware whenever a child is taken by CPS anywhere in the US because the first four hours in the system are the most critical. The first article is here; the second article is here

UPDATE

Please check out the article I did which followed up this one on St. Louis County courts: Elaine Pudlowski, their Kids for Cash scheme, and more players are mentioned. 

9 comments:

Unknown said...

I absolutely am IMPRESSED at your journalism on the Topics that NEED ADDRESSED in MISSOURI as well as our Beloved Nation as a WHOLE and that I Too am a journalist but more importantly, a Mother and a Grandmother and that this story is so very COMMON PRACTICED that the children have become just PAWNS in this blatant abuse of POWER and The joys of childhood And The Families BOND is nothing more than a mere joke and That it's WORSE than the Current pandemic in it's devastation of the GOD BOND, the BLOOD BOND and Our Way Of Life..that the United States is the LARGEST CONTRIBUTER of HUMAN TRAFFICKING OF CHILDREN and INVOLUNTARY SLAVERY is ALIVE and Thriving among our Elected Officials and the Judicial System that we are supposed to be able to TRUST and that if you WANT to HEAR a WHOLE NEW TWIST to this corruptness, then Do I Have A Whopper of a story for you...UNLIKE one MANY NEVER even KNEW could HAPPEN and that My Only living Heir, the Last of the bloodline, IS now currently being held CAPTIVE, isolated, alienated, drugged to comply, 13 years old, NEVER been in ANY dealings with CPS, AND the Reign of TERROR that HE is BEING subjected to as a child NEEDS TO STOP but as you know ...Wont and because of one small Factor...

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your work in shedding light on what is taking place in St. Louis County Family Courts. It gives us hope that our children might be saved one day. We have a long journey ahead of us, considering the level of corruption of public officials including court officers like guardians ad litem.

Anonymous said...

I'm in a nearby county, and unfortunately, it's a mess here as well.

I just finished a 3-year custody battle where the GAL actually called DFS and told them not to listen to me about my ex (I wasn't the caller, but DFS still interviews each parent). The DFS caseworker said she was appalled by how the GAL was behaving. Those were her actual words.

We ended up settling, much to my surprise, but the GAL refused to sign because my ex wouldn't pay his half. I got stuck paying all of the GAL fees because she threatened to tell the judge not to finalize our paperwork if she wasn't paid in full. The GAL said our settlement agreement was completely insane and didn't agree to it at all. That blew my mind because why would you say something like that about an agreement two parents willingly signed on their own?

By the way, my ex had a criminal history of child abuse, not just a history with DFS. The GAL refused to contact the prosecuting attorney's office for info on the deal he took to avoid charges. She also refused to contact the pediatrician they've had since birth, the counselors they've had for years, or the teachers. All of these professionals repeatedly reported abuse! Several of them even tried contacting the GAL on their own with no luck. She did, however, call a doctor our kids only saw once in their whole lives after my ex complained about something that happened there.

I'm not even sure how I ended up paying this GAL like $10,000 since she ignored my emails about making an appointment for more than a year. She refused to meet with me or even speak to me on the phone. She also ignored all my messages about urgent concerns. Apparently she wrote back to my ex and called him all the time though - I only know this because he bragged about it.

I am completely disgusted by the legal system in Missouri and don't know what to do to help make things better.

Missy said...

One of the women in this article is from STL County (she's okay with me saying that - I checked before I posted here):

https://missycrystal.medium.com/heres-why-women-lie-about-abuse-during-custody-battles-58a1010e0930

Anonymous said...

Pudlowski is all about money. She is not in this business for "the best interests of the children." She is a GAL for cash. The more turmoil family has, the more therapists she will place to drain the family financially. Her goal is to make sure that the case lingers in the courts as long as possible. More hearings, more money for her and her "friends." Everyone except for the children and the parents make money during this ordeal, perpetrated solely to generate income.

KATHRINE said...

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GK1mYYSZZfCrOkKIkswkxbulq4oBH1_6/view IT IS HAPPENING IN EVERY STATE AND COUNTY THEY ARE ALL CORRUPT WE NEED TO AUDIT EVERY CPS OFFICE EVERY STATE AND EVERY COUNTY

Anonymous said...

Jefferson County is worse!!! If you want to get a good scoop on how corrupt our family courts are here in Missouri, which makes me ill, I dont have enough space to even really get started but I will. I have two daughters and I was blown away by the collusion of attorneys and so called judges in Hillsboro. They are blatantly corrupt to point the prosecuting attorney for child support Tamela Sides told me she called Jefferson City and had my motion to modify denied.
I had to on July 6, 2013 and I will never forget this as long as I live but I had to get or what I thought was help from our useless system when my daughter, then age 6, tells me that Uncle Jeff, which she had one current uncle at the time and she never called him uncle so right away I was shocked because I had not ever heard her call anyone uncle and who was this to say he was here uncle? Classic pedophile stuff i am thinking. She continues by telling me that he poured beer on her head not once but twice. I asked her why he did that and did your mom say anything to him? She says no that mom was drunk which is another one I had never heard her say. Then she, mind you I just picked her up and am driving, tells me this f*cktard went pee in front of them. Meaning all the kids at a 5 going on 6 year olds birthday party??? What? So I told her that I was going to talk to her mom about this and that is unecceptable by anyone. So when I get home I let her in and as usual she darts back to the bedroom and wants Carol right away. I am in living room thinking how to get Carol away so I cam tell her what Mya just said. Well Carol comes out maybe 5 minutes of being there and with the look on her face I will never forget either. My daughter told her the exact same things she told me but also said that uncle Jeff swam naked with her. Thank god she was there because if she wouldnt I would be in prison or dead right now. I contact my lawyer Sarah Donahue, piece of trash, and ask her what I need to do and she tells me to get her into therapy right away and we were both like WHAT? I immediately reported it to 1800 number to report abuse. I have to leave most of this out because I also need a lawyer that will help hold everyone accountable including the GAL Joseph Cunningham who in all of this really shown how useless and corrupt the court system is. He was supposed to talk to my daughter and Nicole made an excuse because Mya would just tell the truth and not bat an eye and guess what? Nicole could not let the truth out at any cost. She made the flimsy excuse that Mya was upset and scared to talk to him and maybe a little thats why I went up to back Mya and they were not even there. HE LET THEM LEAVE without doing the only important thing he was supposed to do and HE COULD NOT EVEN DO THAT! He was appointed by me and then chaos is cash so he f*cktards his end and then makes the decision because the judge obviously was not capable, less than 2 years later not elected as judge so the immature punk gets wasted with friend and wrecks car injuring passenger = DWI and 2nd degree assault which mysteriously disappears, in my crazy exes favor recalling emails that were "Obscene and Profanity laced tirades" which I knew were not from me but they did not give me the opportunity to see these emails. You want to know why? It was a yahoo account she created with my info and the unbalanced narcisst emailed herself. I have the proof of the email I just need to see the emails to vefify the address.
There is more and if you have a good lawyer or any resources to go after these animals I would appreciate.
Also the whole reason i wrote was to thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing the much needed and heroic work you have done and continue to do. I for one will always have your back because you are a true blue patriot!!!!!THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

Savannah Blake said...

Buchanan county St Joseph Missouri gave my 6 yr old sons DDF father full custody he is 77 yrs old never raised a child in his life retired from YWCA women's shelter where he traded drugs for sex on the job and was caught and got 3 days paid off ��he got me pregnant while I some how passed out at his house first day meeting him and had disturbing pics of little boys on his camera but my son is safer with him judge millasa lawyer said and the guardian ad litem Jackie Ross told my son the day we met her he was handsome because he was her nephew she's married into his dad's family when I try to tell the judge I was screamed at and told to shut up for I be put in jail I've been trying for two years to get my story out to get help legally and e mailed half of America and got no where help please

KC said...

Was this Stephanie Schutt in Platte County by any chance??