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Saturday, March 27, 2021

GAL, Lawyer, and Judge Collusion in St. Louis Revealed

(Part of text messages between Elaine Pudlowski and Patricia Susi)

A remarkable set of emails and text messages between lawyers and a guardian ad litem in St. Louis County show the extent of the collusion that the players will resort to in managing cases. 

I have received text messages and emails between Patricia Susi, Deborah Henry, and Elaine Pudlowski, in which the three are discussing the Van Den Bergh case. 

This is a case first broken by Daily Docket News. Here is part of that. 

Daily Docket News’ investigative team has an explosive update on a case we reported on last month as well as November and December of last year. Van Den Bergh vs. Van Den BerghCase 15SL-DR05021-01 filed in the Saint Louis County Family Court on 10/10/2016. Elaine Pudlowski, Esq., with the law firm of FrankelRubinKleinSiegelPayne & PudlowskiP.C., who was the court appointed guardian ad litem, was fired by Plaintiffs new attorney on November 5, 2020. We previously reported that the Petitioner’s minor child disclosed to a therapist that she was molested by the Respondent, but Pudlowski, with the court’s blessing and having the best interest of something other than the molested minor child in mind, reunified the molested minor child with their molester. Petitioner filed an Emergency Motion for Recusal of Judge Bruce F. Hilton, who was the presiding Judge in this case, and had been allegedly accused of BiasPrejudiceHarassmentDiscriminationThreatsIntimidationDenigration and Hostile Acts, to name a few, toward Petitioner.  Our legal team reports that Judge Bruce F. Hilton has in fact recused himself on January 12, 2021, with no explanation for his outrageous behavior, in a family court. Why do you think Judge Bruce F. Hilton recused himself? Do you think Judge Bruce F. Hilton and Pudlowski sleep at night knowing that this child is being molested every day on their recommendation? Do you think either Judge Bruce F. Hilton or Pudlowski really cares about what you think? You be the Judge.

Susi represented the mother in this case from September 2017-June 2018; during that period she was in constant contact with Pudlowski, who was the Guardian ad Litem (GAL). 

A GAL is brought into custody cases to represent the best interest of the child or children. 

They were repeatedly in inappropriate communication. In one instance, they scheme behind the scene to stop mom from having her daughter see a therapist. 

Shortly after that, Pudlowski claims she'll have what appears to be an ex-parte meeting with the judge, "I'm going to approach the judge about it next week, let him know who I've called and who will and will not see her." Pudlowski tells Susi.

Approaching judges in an apparent ex-parte manner seems like a pattern for Pudlowski, according to these text messages. Below is one in which Susi asks, "Heard anything from his honor."

I'm not sure in what scenario it would be appropriate for a GAL to have communication with a judge and not involve counsel for each party as well, but in such a scenario, I definitely can't imagine the GAL should then reveal that conversation in a text message. 

"Courtroom locked and he is not answering the door buzzer," Pudlowski responded. 

(Another text message which suggests inappropriate contact between Pudlowski and judge)

In another exchange, both treat the mother, Caroline, with contempt. 

"My frustration is not with you," Pudlowski says to Susi in one email, "I am so sick of Caroline's bullshit."

"I know, just frustrated by the antics that go on in this," Pudlowski says in another text message. 

It's noteworthy that the girl in this custody made repeated disclosures of sexual abuse and Pudlowski demanded that the dad see her unsupervised over the objections of several therapists. It's possible all the headaches created by this case was due to the situation she was creating. 

Pudlowski took to calling this mom "Crazy Caroline" and she was so inappropriate with the nickname that she mentioned it to Evita Tolu, who is now suing Pudlowski and others. In the audio below, Pudlowski tells her to "get over it" and deal with her ex-husband, the accused molester, having unfettered access to her daughter.  

In the most remarkable exchange, Susi files a motion to have Pudlowski removed as a GAL, but while this appears tough outwardly, behind the scenes they are telegraphing to each other. 

"Sending you a nasty gram," Pudlowski texts to Susi, presumably shortly after receiving the motion. 

Sometime later, Susi sent this text message to Pudlowski. 

"Just wanted to let you know that Deb H had nothing to do with the filing on Monday. She wants me to amend and take her name of of the pleading. I just wanted you to know I don't think I can do that without sending a red flag to Caroline," Susi says to Pudlowski. 

Deb H is Deb Henry a senior lawyer in the firm where Susi works. Curtis, Heinz, Garrett, and O'Keefe. It appears that Henry was overseeing the case. 

In fact, Henry did not want her name placed on the motion to disqualify Pudlowski per emails below. 

Email TRail Susi + Henry RE Motion to Disqualify GAL (1) by mikekvolpe on Scribd

"Unfortunately, you are burning a bridge for a client that will turn around and sue you in a hearbeat because she is manipulative, she is a proven liar and she will need someone to blame when she loses custody." Henry says to Susi, of the firm's client. 

 Henry made her own startling admission in another set of emails. 

"From my perspective, we have the October 13th TRO and subsequent trial date in November. How wedded are you to the trial dates," Henry emails to Pudlowski on September 18, 2017, "It is important that {the daughter} get evaluated because we are buying future litigation.  {emphasis mine}" 

Buying future litigation doesn't seem ethical or legal and Ms. Henry seems to have a lot to answer for. 

All three ladies do, along with the primary judge on this case, Bruce Hilton. I reached out to all of them unsuccessfully, but my email to the three ladies is below. They may not have found it as amusing as I do. 


I'm attaching three attachments. Let me blunt, they kind of look bad for all of you. According to the most damning one, Ms. Susi, then representing Ms. Caroline Van Den Bergh, was communicating by text message with Elaine Pudlowski, the GAL on the case. My favorite comes from page 19, "sending you a nasty gram," Elaine says to Ms. Susi, this is timed for the approximate moment that Ms. Susi filed a motion to recuse Ms. Pudlowski. Am I right? 

You seem to joke a lot about Caroline but her daughter has disclosed numerous times that she's being molested by dad who gets 50% custody. Am I right?

The second attachment is also pretty bad. I quote, Ms. Henry to Ms. Pudlowski, "It is important that {Caroline's daughter} get evaluated since we are buying future litigation."

"Buying future litigation" could you get me some context here? 

The third one is the least damning, but Ms. Henry appears to want to distance herself from Ms. Susi's motion to remove Ms. Pudlowski. Am I understanding that or am I missing something? Could this distancing have anything to do with the buying of litigation that is happening? Any other thoughts? 

Post Script:

Please check out my previous articles on St. Louis County: Article 1Article 2Article 3Article 4Article 5Article 6Article 7, and Article 8. 

Also check out the crowdfunding campaign which supports this series.  


Anonymous said...

OMG. This is so disgusting what these three officers of the court are doing to the abused child and to the mother who paid them thousands and thousands of $. One of these days, Elaine, Tricia and Deb will be thrown under a bus by one of these children that they so criminally traded. My question is how much did the molester pay these court whores to sell the child? This is so so so wrong on so many levels. Why isn't anyone investigating this criminality? Where is the Missouri Bar? Oh, yeah, the Missouri Bar is at the Cash For Kids LLC meeting plotting how to destroy a journalist and a mother of two other children they had trafficked. Where is Wesley Bell? Oh, yeah, he is working on jailing Angela Freiner for trying to save her child from child molestation.

Dale said...

Virginia Busch, St Charles county is doing the same thing.

Anonymous said...

Elaine Pudlowski and Bruce Hilton are foul human beings. I am completely unrelated to any of the cases reported on here, but I share the exact same experience. Their behavior must be rampant- so sad, what can be done? Thank you for your reporting, it’s pretty incredible what you have been able to uncover!