Joe Szimhart & CultAware - New Niche for Psychopaths


The Living Force
name said:
Uh, Guardian, these people *might* be sickos,

Well, they're supporting Szimhart, Rick Ross, etc. so they ARE sickos in my book, but of course you're entitled to your own opinion and choice of verbiage.

but what is relevant is that this has "spooks" written all over it.

Really? I hadn't noticed that :rolleyes:

There are those many small things which are a sign that the gravity constant has changed in this particular area.

Yeah well, let's see what effect force of will has on their mass of azzhats?


The Living Force
Guardian said:
Yeah, the United Way is a HUGE org in the US. Employees can support the UW with automatic deductions from their paychecks, which they are often "encouraged" (almost forced) to do by their employers.

The United Way then funds a bunch of other scamish charities like MCES.

No kidding. I ran into that with UW when I started working at Intel. I discovered some of what they were up to and cut them off, and I am not especially surprised that it would be connected with operations like this one. But for many it is a "worthy cause," I suppose.


The Living Force
Joan Johnson Stern was/is (?) connected with the Democratic party. Could find this from an old newspaper article

Joan Johnston-Stern, chairwoman of the Cheltenham Democratic committee, said that while the timing might be right with many people disgruntled over the Missouri decision, the party would not succeed.

"If it's a women's party, it's not going to win anything," she said.

Johnston-Stern, a mainstay in the Democratic Party since the mid-'70s, argued that NOW cannot run a party on a single issue.

"They need strength; they need Democrats," she said.

Hudson Scattergood was VP for college relations - Ursinus College - the same place where Szimhart had his psychological training. A newspaper clipping (again from 1989)


Ursinus Names Vice President For College Relations
August 03, 1989|The Morning Call

Hudson B. Scattergood, former head of development and public relations at Lankenau Hospital and most recently president of The Newbold Marketing Group, Inc., has been named vice president for college relations at Ursinus College in Collegeville.

According to college President Richard P. Richter, who announced the appointment, Scattergood will have general responsibility for financial development and all college communications areas. he new vice president goes to Ursinus with more than 25 years of experience in fund-raising, marketing and public relations. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School with an undergraduate degree in economics and a master's degree in marketing.

A staff member in alumni relations and development activities at the University of Pennsylvania for eight years, he then headed development at Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital before being named vice president for development at Lankenau, a position he held for 13 years.

At Ursinus, Scattergood succeeds Dr. John R. Van Ness, who left the college for the position of executive vice president at Moore College of Art in Philadelphia.

A former chairman of the Main Line Chamber of Commerce, Scattergood serves or has served with many regional volunteer organizations including the American Cancer Society, the Montgomery County Emergency Service, and the Mary J. Drexel Home.

He is a resident of Plymouth Township.


FOTCM Member
Laura said:
Hmmm... do ya s'pose this Joe guy is like Opus Dei or something?

from here _

There are 10 pages of book reviews or mention with Szimhart (had noticed the Opus one too) along with a review of "Isaac Newton: The Last Sorcerer" & "Snow Job in the Himalayas".


Was this picked up in the thread from Szimhart's bio (i might have missed it)?


1970-72 Therapeutic Activities Worker II at Pennhurst State Institution for mentally retarded.

Pennhurst was an asylum - a horrible place with much controversy. The new owner is; i don't no, making some weird theme place out of it.

Note: warning on some graphics.



So what would this place been like in 1970-72? A few things are said here. _ Kind of sounds like a place that many wrongs were carried out by many authoritarians.


FOTCM Member
Aragorn said:
But the interesting thing I noticed was that most of them, since around 1996, have been published in the magazinge 'Skeptical Inquirer magazine'. Now, this magazine is owned by 'The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, formerly known as CSICOP. And, it seems, that Joe Szimhart has close ties to this organization, see:


Cult expert Joe Szimhart discusses how genuine spiritual experiences can be exploited by religious cults.

Join Skeptiko host Alex Tsakiris for an interview with Joe Szimhart. During the interview Mr. Szimhart explains how religious cults use spiritual experiences to their advantage:

Alex Tsakiris: No. I just don’t agree and I don’t think we share that common understanding of science. Science is a set of tools. It’s not a position statement. We don’t draw lines in the sand, and that’s what’s the problem with that oft-repeated quote, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” Of course they don’t. That’s completely unscientific because it adds a subjective measure. I could always claim that your claims are extraordinary. My claims are not. My proof is extraordinary. Your claims are not. Science is about trying to bring some objective measures to these things, but it’s still just a game. It’s just a tool. We don’t wind up with any truth. We just wind up…

Joe Szimhart: Let me stop you right there. I understand where you’re going with this because I’ve been through these arguments before and I’ve read Dawkin’s books and all that sort of thing about these issues. I’m a member of the Skeptical Inquirer organization. I’ve gotten their magazine. I helped set up a skeptics group in New Mexico when it first formed with Ken Frazier.

Looking up Ken Frazier on Wikipedia gives us:

Kendrick Crosby Frazier (born March 19, 1942 in Windsor, Colorado) is a science writer and longtime editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine. He is also a former editor of Science News, author or editor of ten books, and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He is a fellow and a member {from their site at _ we can see that he belongs to the board of directors} of the executive council of Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI), an international organization which promotes scientific inquiry.[1]

Which makes it seem even more probable that Szimhart is an 'insider' at CSICOP.

Actually, it seems rather the opposite, that Szimhart has tried to use CSICOP as a support. I mean, how do you reconcile being a believing, practicing Catholic with CSICOP which is down on ALL religious claims as the exchange above suggests?

Aragorn said:
I'm not sure how much this is worth following, but I think there's a possibility that Szimhart has connections pretty high up.

Actually, it seems rather doubtful. He strikes me more as a useful idiot - let him run and get some small funds here and there via various fronts, but if he gets himself in hot water, he's out in the cold. He's certainly not intelligent enough to be CIA or highly connected anywhere. He's just the dangling thread to all the others.


The Living Force
Laura said:
Actually, it seems rather doubtful. He strikes me more as a useful idiot - let him run and get some small funds here and there via various fronts, but if he gets himself in hot water, he's out in the cold. He's certainly not intelligent enough to be CIA or highly connected anywhere. He's just the dangling thread to all the others.

I agree, Szimhart doesn't have enough money to be very high up on the food chain...he's a bottom feeder.

Now Marrone is another story, I think he's another West.


The Living Force

Hudson B Scattergood was born in 1938. Hudson currently lives in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania.

Hudson B Scattergood is related to Heather Gannon, who is 44 years old and lives in Plymouth Meeting, PA. Hudson B Scattergood is also related to Wendy Hill, who is 50 years old and lives in Lansdale, PA. Hudson B Scattergood is also related to Nancy Scattergood, who is 73 years old and lives in Plymouth Meeting, PA. Hudson B Scattergood is also related to Kate Scattergood, who is 37 years old and lives in Washington, PA.

Didn't turn anything else up on Hudson from google, a few career related profile sights, some alumi stuff, nothing I felt relevant.

I then plugged Margaret Bailey mces into google and got a link to their 2010-11 annual report. It was there that I found:

Rocio Nell, M.D., C.P.E., CEO/Medical Director
William Myers, M.B.A., Chief Operating Officer
Consolacion Alcantara, M.D., Medical Staff President
Gary Bilski, R.N., Nurse Executive

who all seem to be in charge of the medical/psychiatric administration.

Apparently Rocio is an artist as well: _ though her stuff is less disturbing than Joe's.

She was also sued in the 90s for medical malpractice, but found immune due to her status as a representative of the government...


Civil Action
Gawthrop, J. May , 1998
Before the court in this 42 U.S.C. § 1983 prisoner wrongful
death action are two summary judgment motions, one by defendants
Montgomery County Correctional Facility and Warden Roth, and the
other by defendants Dr. Rocio Nell and Montgomery County
Emergency Services ("MCES"). Upon the following reasoning,
defendants MCCF and Warden Roth’s motion shall be denied, and
defendants Dr. Nell and MCES’s motion shall be denied in part and
granted in part.
I. Background
On October 13, 1995, Dennis Mandi was arrested, resulting in
his incarceration at the Montgomery County Correctional Facility
(“MCCF”). After he informed the medical personnel during his
intake medical screening that he was undergoing drug dependency
withdrawal, he was placed in the general population. Five days
later, after fighting with another inmate, Mr. Mandi was moved to
separation. On October 20, 1995, after Mr. Mandi jumped head
first off a top bunk, he told prison officials that he had
attempted to commit suicide and stated that he would try again
until he succeeded. As a result of this incident, Mr. Mandi was
classified as suicidal, transferred to the prison’s psychiatric
wing, and placed in four point restraints for a twenty-four hour
While housed in the psychiatric wing, Mr. Mandi was
evaluated and treated primarily by two individuals: Dr. Rocio
Nell and Dr. Robert Wlodarczyk ("Dr. Bob")
. The prison had
contracted with Dr. Bob’s employer, EMSA, to provide medical
services, including psychiatric and psychological services, to
inmates at the prison. Under the contract terms, Dr. Bob was
responsible for the daily interaction with the inmates. EMSA
subcontracted with Dr. Nell’s employer, MCES, to provide a
psychiatrist, Dr. Nell, on-site at the prison five hours per
week, and on-call services twenty-four hours a day, seven days a
week. Generally, an inmate requesting psychiatric services would
first be evaluated by an EMSA nurse, who would refer the inmate
to Dr. Bob, who would then, if necessary, refer the inmate to Dr.
Nell for further observation. However, if an inmate threatened
suicide, the prison officials would contact Dr. Nell directly,
since she was responsible for the housing and monitoring
decisions concerning suicidal inmates.
On October 25, 1995, Dr. Bob telephoned Dr. Nell and
informed her that Mr. Mandi, who was still housed in the
psychiatric wing, was expressing feelings of paranoid ideation,
auditory hallucinations, feelings that others were plotting
against him, and general agitation. Dr. Nell prescribed
medication for his symptoms of paranoia. On October 27, 1995,
Dr. Nell conducted her first in-person examination of Mr. Mandi.
Although Dr. Nell had not reviewed Mr. Mandi’s medical records,
she consulted with Dr. Bob who knew that Mr. Mandi had jumped
head-first off the top bunk. They claim, however, to have
discussed only Mr. Mandi’s paranoid ideation. During the exam,
Dr. Nell noted that Mr. Mandi was restless, agitated, and very
suspicious. Again, Dr. Nell prescribed medication only for Mr.
Mandi’s paranoia.
One month later, on November 24, 1995, Dr. Nell examined Mr.
Mandi for the second time, at which point she discontinued Mr.
Mandi’s medication because he refused to take it, claiming that
his fears were based in reality. Following the examination, Mr.
Mandi was released back into the general population. Two days
later, after Mr. Mandi told prison officials that he felt like
jumping off the second floor building and that he was "ready to
pop," Dr. Nell ordered Mr. Mandi transferred back to the
psychiatric unit for observation, classified as suicidal. Later
that evening, a nurse reported to Dr. Nell that Mr. Mandi had
stated that he no longer felt suicidal and that he wanted to be
returned to the general population. Dr. Nell ordered that Dr.
Bob examine Mr. Mandi as soon as possible, but Dr. Bob was
unavailable until the next morning. Dr. Bob arrived at the
prison the next day at 8:00 a.m. and had not yet examined Mr.
Mandi when, at approximately 1:00 p.m., he was found hanging in
his cell by his jumpsuit. Mr. Mandi died at Suburban General
Hospital on November 29, 1995.
During the time that Mr. Mandi was incarcerated at MCCF,
EMSA incorporated a written suicide policy into its contract for
services, which contract was signed by Warden Roth. Among other
things, as part of the effort to prevent suicidal gestures and
suicide attempts, the policy announced that the correctional
staff and medical personnel should cooperate to monitor suicidal
inmates every fifteen minutes. The activity sheets maintained by
the correctional staff indicate that the monitoring of suicidal
inmates, such as Mr. Mandi, did not conform to this standard.
For example, on the date of his suicide, Mr. Mandi was observed
by a correctional officer at approximately 11:00 a.m., when he
served Mr. Mandi his lunch tray, but was not seen again until he
was found hanging in his cell at approximately 1:00 p.m.
Moreover, Dr. Nell, Warden Roth, and other correctional officers
deny knowledge that there was a policy stating that suicidal
inmates should be visually checked every fifteen minutes.
Rather, even though Warden Roth was generally informed of
suicidal inmates during his daily rounds of the facility, there
were no planned tours by security for those inmates who had been
designated as suicidal.
II. Summary Judgment Standard
Summary judgment is proper "if the pleadings, depositions,
answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together with
the affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue as to
any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a
judgment as a matter of law." Fed. R. Civ. P. 56(c). Unless
evidence in the record would permit a jury to return a verdict
for the non-moving party, there are no issues for trial, and
summary judgment becomes appropriate. Anderson v. Liberty Lobby,
Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986). In considering a motion for
summary judgment, a court does not resolve factual disputes or
make credibility determinations and must view facts and
inferences in the light most favorable to the party opposing the
motion. Siegel Transfer, Inc. v. Carrier Express, Inc. , 54 F.3d
1125, 1127 (3d Cir. 1995). The party opposing the summary
judgment motion must come forward with sufficient facts to show
that there is a genuine issue of material fact. Celotex Corp. v.
Catrett, 477 U.S. 317 (1986).
III. Discussion
Dr. Nell and MCES argue that they are entitled to summary
judgment because plaintiff cannot demonstrate that they had
1 "A detainee is entitled under the Due Process Clause of the
Fourteenth Amendment to, at a minimum, . . . no less a level of medical care
than that required for convicted prisoners by the Eighth Amendment." Colburn
v. Upper Darby Twnshp., 838 F.2d 633, 668 (3d Cir. 1988); Boring v.
Kozakiewicz, 833 F.2d 468 (3d Cir. 1987).
knowledge of Mr. Mandi’s vulnerability to suicide, and further,
that they did not act with deliberate indifference in treating
Mr. Mandi. Similarly, Warden Roth and MCCF argue that because
Warden Roth did not have subjective knowledge of Mr. Mandi’s
vulnerability to suicide, summary judgment should be entered in
their favor. They further assert that Warden Roth should be
afforded qualified immunity against plaintiff’s claims, and that
plaintiff cannot demonstrate that MCCF had a policy or custom
that violated any of Mr. Mandi’s constitutional rights.
A. Warden Roth
To state a claim for relief under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
denial of medical treatment, a prisoner must allege facts or
omissions sufficiently harmful to evidence "deliberate
indifference to serious medical needs." Estelle v. Gamble, 429
U.S. 97, 106 (1976)(setting forth standard for violations of
prisoners’ Eighth Amendment rights).1 With respect to suicidal
inmates, a custodial official may be liable in damages only if he
acts with “deliberate indifference” to the individual’s
psychological needs. Williams v. Borough of West Chester, 891
F.2d 458 (3d Cir. 1989). Specifically, to establish individual
liability against a custodial officer, a plaintiff must establish
three elements: "(1) the detainee had a 'particular vulnerability
to suicide,' (2) the custodial officer knew or should have known
of that vulnerability, and (3) the officer 'acted with reckless
indifference' to the detainees' vulnerability." Colburn v. Upper
Darby Twnshp., 946 F.2d 1017, 1023 (3d Cir. 1991)("Colburn
II")(citing Colburn v. Upper Darby Twnshp., 838 F.2d 633 (3d
Cir. 1988))("Colburn I").
More specifically, the second prong of the Colburn II test
has further been held to require that the prison "official ha[ve]
a subjective awareness of a substantial risk of serious harm.
Thus, a plaintiff must show actual awareness of the risk, not
just that the risk would have been perceived by an objective
reasonable person." Litz v. City of Allentown, 896 F. Supp.
1401, 1410 (E.D. Pa. 1995); see also Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U.S.
825 (1994)(holding that to be deliberately indifferent, prison
officials must know the facts from which the harm or risk of harm
could be inferred, and must actually draw the inference). As to
the third prong, "deliberate indifference in a pretrial detainee
suicide case must amount to more than an assertion of a negligent
failure to protect the detainee from his/her own actions." Robey
v. Chester County, 946 F. Supp. 333, 337 (E.D. Pa. 1996).
Warden Roth argues immunity: that the question of whether he
was deliberately indifferent to Mr. Mandi’s needs should not go
to the jury, because he is entitled to qualified immunity against
plaintiff’s § 1983 claims. The doctrine of qualified immunity
shields “government officials performing discretionary functions
. . . from liability for civil damages insofar as their conduct
does not violate clearly established statutory or constitutional
rights of which a reasonable person would have known.” Harlow v.
Fitzgerald, 457 U.S. 800, 818 (1982). The defendant bears the
burden of proving that he is entitled to qualified immunity. Id.
at 815; Stoneking v. Bradford Area School Dist. , 882 F.2d 720,
726 (3d Cir. 1989). Whether an official may prevail in his
qualified immunity defense depends upon the "objective
reasonableness of [his] conduct as measured by reference to
clearly established law." Davis v. Scherer, 468 U.S. 183, 191
(1984)(quoting Harlow, 457 U.S. at 818). However, "there does
not have to be 'precise factual correspondence' between the case
at issue and a previous case in order for a right to be clearly
established.'" Burns v. County of Cambria, Pa., 971 F.2d 1015,
1024 (3d Cir. 1992)(quoting People of Three Mile Island v.
Nuclear Reg. Comm’rs, 747 F.2d 139, 144-145 (3d Cir. 1984)).
At the time of the relevant conduct, Warden Roth did,
indeed, have a clearly established duty not to act with
deliberate indifference to Mr. Mandi’s serious medical needs.
Nevertheless, Warden Roth is entitled to immunity if he knew or
should have known of Mr. Mandi’s vulnerability to suicide, and
based on the information available to him, he reasonably could
have believed that he addressed Mr. Mandi’s vulnerability with
something more responsive than reckless or deliberate
In this case, there exist jury questions as to whether
Warden Roth knew of Mr. Mandi’s vulnerability to suicide, whether
the suicide monitoring policy was sufficient to meet the
prisoners’ serious psychiatric needs, and whether Warden Roth’s
acquiescence to the lack of proper suicide policy constitutes
deliberate indifference that was causally connected to Mr.
Mandi’s suicide. I conclude that plaintiff has adduced
sufficient evidence to support findings of fact that would
constitute a violation by Warden Roth of Mr. Mandi’s clearly
established constitutional rights. This constrains a denial of
Warden Roth’s assertion of qualified immunity and precludes
granting summary judgment.
Supervisory liability for state employee’s unconstitutional
conduct exists under § 1983. However, it is based not on the
ground of respondeat superior, but rather on actual knowledge and
acquiescence. See, e.g., Baker v. Monroe Township, 50 F.3d 1186,
1194 (3d Cir. 1995); Andrews v. City of Philadelphia, 895 F.2d
1469, 1478 (3d Cir. 1990). Municipal defendants “can be held
liable under § 1983 only if the plaintiff can establish a policy
or custom on the part of the municipality,” Robey, 946 F. Supp.
at 338, for which a causal nexus can be shown between that policy
and the violation of constitutional rights. See Monell v. Dept.
of Social Servs., 436 U.S. 658, 690 (1978).
In Robey, plaintiffs claimed that Chester County prison
"ha[d] not followed the minimal practice in the field of personal
observation of inmates and that th[at] evidence[d] an
unconstitutional policy or practice on the part of Chester
County,” which made it liable for the suicide of one of the
2 Dr. Nell and Warden Roth were sued both in their official and
individual capacities. Claims against officials in their official capacities
are equivalent to claims against the government entity itself. See W.B. v.
Matula, 67 F.3d 484, 499 (3d Cir. 1995). Because plaintiff has adduced facts
evidencing a policy or custom on the part of the correctional and medical
staff which a jury could conclude constitutes deliberate indifference to
suicidal prisoners’ needs, summary judgment for Dr. Nell and Warden Roth in
their official capacities must also be denied.
prison’s inmates. Robey, 946 F. Supp. at 338. The court found
that this allegation "produced enough facts of record to create a
question of material fact with regard to the policy allege[d] and
the requisite causation required to sustain that claim." Id.
Because, here, plaintiff similarly alleges that it was the
prison’s failure to practice the fifteen-minute check that
resulted in Mr. Mandi’s suicide, that allegation presents a
genuine issue of material fact. Thus, I must deny summary
judgment for MCCF.2
C. Dr. Nell and MCES
1. Section 1983 Claim
Allegations merely stating a claim for medical malpractice
do not support a § 1983 claim for deliberate indifference to
serious medical needs. Estelle, 429 U.S. at 105-106 ("[A]
complaint that a physician has been negligent in diagnosing or
treating a medical condition does not state a valid claim of
medical mistreatment under the Eighth Amendment."). Moreover, no
Eighth Amendment claim "is stated when a doctor disagrees with
the professional judgment of another doctor." White v. Napoleon,
897 F.2d 103, 110 (3d Cir. 1990). Thus, even "f the doctor's
judgment is ultimately shown to be mistaken, at most what would
3 “As soon as possible,” often abbreviated ASAP, does indeed express
some urgency by its very words. It goads one out of the starting blocks more
abruptly than, for example, “With all deliberate speed,” though seemingly less
so than “Right now!” “Immediately!” or “At once!”
be proved is medical malpractice, not an Eighth Amendment
violation." Id.
I find that a genuine issue of material fact exists as to
whether Dr. Nell’s treatment of Mr. Mandi constitutes deliberate
indifference or negligence, thus precluding the grant of summary
judgment for Dr. Nell. Viewing the facts in the light most
favorable to the non-moving party, plaintiff has produced facts
sufficient to permit a trier of fact to find that Dr. Nell had
actual knowledge of Mr. Mandi’s serious risk of suicide and that
her treatment of Mr. Mandi constituted deliberate indifference to
that risk. Dr. Nell did order Dr. Bob to examine Mr. Mandi "as
soon as possible"3 after his various statements to the
correctional and medical staff, together with his suicidal
gestures, gave her reason to know that Mr. Mandi was vulnerable
to suicide. She did not, however, prescribe any medication,
order a constant watch, or otherwise take steps to minimize the
risk of suicide could be construed as being deliberately
indifferent to Mr. Mandi’s psychological needs. After all, Dr.
Nell was the person responsible for the housing and monitoring
directives for suicidal inmates. Whether her conduct constituted
deliberate indifference is further brought into question by the
fact that Dr. Nell did little to ensure that the prison’s
policies, which were promulgated with the specific purpose of
preventing exactly that which occurred in the present case, were
2. Medical Malpractice Claim
I find, however, that Dr. Nell is immune, under 42 Pa. C.S.
§ 8501 et seq., the Political Subdivision Tort Claims Act
("PSTCA"), against plaintiff’s medical malpractice claim.. In
Walls v. Hazelton State General Hospital , 629 A.2d 232 (Pa.
Cmwlth. 1993), a case in which a physician was similarly on-call
to provide services to a state hospital, the court held that
because the "jury could have concluded that [the physician] was a
'person who is acting or who has acted on behalf of a government
unit' under Section 8501," that physician was entitled to
immunity against claims of negligence. Id. at 237. Similarly, I
find here that Dr. Nell should be entitled to immunity against
plaintiff’s claims of negligence.
Under the PSTCA, state employees are afforded immunity from
liability for their negligent acts. See 42 Pa. C.S. § 8541.
State actors can only be sued for negligence in eight specific
categories allowed under § 8542. Moreover, the PSTCA denies
immunity to individual defendants whose acts constitute "actual
malice or willful misconduct." See 42 Pa. C.S. § 8550. In this
case, plaintiff has not alleged a cause of action that falls into
any of the eight enumerated exceptions to governmental immunity
or to allege state law claims based on malice or willful
4 In her opposition to defendants’ motion for summary judgment,
plaintiff attempts to argue that summary judgment should be denied because
defendants’ actions constitute "willful misconduct." Aside from belatedly
attempting to bring a claim against defendants for willful misconduct that was
not included in any prior pleadings, there are no facts alleged that could be
seen to constitute "willful misconduct." Under Pennsylvania law, "willful
misconduct" for which an employee of a local agency is not immune is
misconduct that the employee recognizes as misconduct and that is carried out
with the intention of achieving that exactly wrongful purpose. In re City of
Philadelphia Litig., 938 F. Supp. 1264, 1273 (E.D. Pa. 1996). Here, even if
it is found that defendants acted with deliberate indifference to Mr. Mandi’s
psychological needs, this is not equivalent to finding “willful misconduct”
and therefore, does not require the denial of Dr. Nell’s immunity against
plaintiff’s state law claims under the PSTCA.
5 As summary judgment has been granted on the claims of negligence
against MCES’s agent, Dr. Nell, plaintiff cannot proceed against MCES on these
misconduct.4 Accordingly, I find that Dr. Nell has immunity from
plaintiff’s negligence claims, and shall thus grant summary
judgment for Dr. Nell on those claims. 5
MCES will be liable only if its policies or procedures are
unconstitutional or are the "moving force" behind the
unconstitutional violation of Mr. Mandi’s rights. Monell, 436
U.S. at 694-95, Colburn II, 946 F.2d at 1027-29. It is unclear
whether, in fact, MCES implemented any policies or reasonable
measures addressing Dr. Nell’s treatment of inmates who posed a
serious risk of suicide. Thus, that MCES had meager, inadequate,
or non-existent procedures could lead a jury to conclude that its
policies are so inadequate and ineffective as to demonstrate
deliberate indifference toward the psychiatric needs of MCCF’s
inmates, including Mr. Mandi’s.
An order follows.
Civil Action
AND NOW, this day of May, 1998, Defendants Montgomery
County Correctional Facility’s and Warden Roth’s Motion for
Summary Judgement is DENIED, and Defendants Dr. Rocio Nell’s and
Montgomery County Emergency Service’s Motion for Summary Judgment
on Plaintiff’s negligence claims is GRANTED, and DENIED as to
Plaintiff’s claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Robert S. Gawthrop, III J.

Not sure if it's relevant or not, but thought I'd include it anyway. Anyway I'll keep digging.


FOTCM Member
Marvin Levitties first hit on g00gle. Now this might be interesting.

For the Levitties family, the saying "like father, like son" is more than a quaint adage. It is the guiding principle that has shaped the family's approach to philanthropy across several generations..For almost as long as he could remember, Marvin Levitties recalls his parents, Samuel and Rose, being actively committed to Einstein. In fact, their involvement began even before Einstein was Einstein; they donated generously to the Jewish Hospital and the Philadelphia Psychiatric Center which would later become Belmont Behavioral Health.

Influenced by his parents' example, Marvin grew up knowing that giving back would be an essential part of his values. Without fanfare, he and his late wife Jean were active in numerous causes. This included contributing time, money and enthusiasm to continue his parents' legacy of supporting Einstein's behavioral health studies.

Over the years, Marvin served on the Belmont Behavioral Health Board and on Einsteins' Board of Trustees. His work on various committees raised significant fund that advanced Einstein's mission. Perhaps his most significant contribution was the gift of his home.

"I always planned to make a lasting financial gift to Einstein," says Marvin. "A number of years ago when the opportunity presented itself, I set up a Retained Life Estate and donated my home to Einstein." Through the Retained Life Estate, Marvin continues to live in the family home in Merion for as long as he chooses, then Einstein can sell the property and keep the proceeds as Marvin's contribution.

"The Retained Life Estate was an ideal mechanism for my father to make a significant contribution to Einstein," says his son Matthew, the third generation of Levitties to actively support Einstein's mission.

Matthew, a Director at a Philadelphia-based private equity firm, is following in his parents' and grandparents' footsteps, serving on the Einstein Board of Trustees as well as several committees. "One of the things that makes Einstein unique is its long history of intergenerational family relationships. It isn't unusual to find two or three generations with strong ties to the hospital and passion for the institution and its mission."

Although his own sons are still young, Matthew is already instilling by example the importance of giving back. "I learned by observing my parents' actions and how they chose to invest their time and money. My mother and father both led by their example of volunteering and fundraising for causes in which they believed. Now, when I leave for an early morning meeting at Einstein, my sons understand that it is a commitment that I am making not just of my own time, but on behalf of our family."

From Samuel and Rose to Marvin and Jean to Matthew and his wife Anja, generations of the Levitties family have made many contributions to Einstein - gifts of their time, gifts of their service, and planned gifts that will have a lasting impact on generations of people who will continue to rely on Einstein for the outstanding healthcare it provides.

He also pops up in the National Association of Private Psychiatric Hospitals. _

And here _
Central Montgomery Mental Health/Mental Retardation Center
Executive title(s): Vice President

State: Pennsylvania
Industry: Healthcare Facilities
Marvin Levitties is Vice President of Central Montgomery Mental Health/Mental Retardation Center.

He's also a member of and he even has his own foundation, "Levitties Foundation is a U.S. company in Merion Station, Montgomery, Pennsylvania, belongs to Nonprofit Trust Management industry." _

His foundations tax return can be viewed here _ prepared by the Joseph P. Melvin Company, PC in Wayne, PA

Marvin's lifestory can be read here _


FOTCM Member
voyageur said:
Was this picked up in the thread from Szimhart's bio (i might have missed it)?


1970-72 Therapeutic Activities Worker II at Pennhurst State Institution for mentally retarded.

Pennhurst was an asylum - a horrible place with much controversy. The new owner is; i don't no, making some weird theme place out of it.


So what would this place been like in 1970-72? A few things are said here. _ Kind of sounds like a place that many wrongs were carried out by many authoritarians.

:barf: Here's a video made in 1968 about the atrocities at Pennhurst _

Here's some information about the video, from _

(1968) Conditions at Pennhurst are exposed in a five-part television news report anchored by local CBS correspondent Bill Baldini. While this is the first time that conditions in the facility have been shown to the general public, it is not the first "expose" of Pennhurst's failings. Numerous newspaper articles, legislative inquiries and other investigations have been focused on Pennhurst over the decades, beginning shortly after its opening. The fact that new "exposes" arise on a regular basis is evidence that little was done to alter the basic nature of the facility or to solve the problems innate in the custodial warehouse model of "care." Baldini is now on the PM&PA Advisory Council.

As for your question about what Pennhurst would have been like in 1970, it doesn't sound like anything changed.
The below is from _

Halderman v. Pennhurst was originally filed in 1974 on behalf of Terri Lee Halderman, who at the age of 20 had suffered a series of often-unexplained injuries during her ten years at Pennhurst. The initial lawsuit sought damages and institutional improvements at Pennhurst, but recognizing that segregated institutions are inherently discriminatory, we entered the lawsuit aiming to close Pennhurst.

The case went to trial in 1977, and District Court Judge Raymond J. Broderick gave a sweeping ruling in the plaintiffs’ favor, ordering the State to develop community placements and services for all Pennhurst residents. The Court wrote:

Conditions at Pennhurst are not only dangerous, with the residents often physically abused or drugged by staff members, but also inadequate for the ‘habilitation’ of the retarded. Indeed, the court found that the physical, intellectual, and emotional skills of some residents have deteriorated at Pennhurst.

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the decision, and the order went into effect in 1979, securing community living arrangements first for school-age Pennhurst residents.

In 1980, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the Pennhurst case for the first of three times. Though it agreed that conditions at Pennhurst were “dangerous,” the Supreme Court reversed the lower court’s ruling. The Court ruled that much of the Developmentally Disabled Assistance and Bill of Rights Act was essentially meaningless – that the law’s statement that people with disabilities “have a right to appropriate treatment, services, and habilitation” in “the setting that is least restrictive of . . . personal liberty” was advisory and not legally binding.

Hearing the case again, the Third Circuit ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, this time on the basis of a state law. And again, the Supreme Court overturned the Third Circuit’s ruling in 1984. The Court ruled in this second decision that lawsuits like Pennhurst cannot be brought to stop violations of state law by state officials.

Nevertheless, Pennhurst’s population was declining rapidly, with only 600 residents remaining in 1983 and a new Secretary of Public Welfare proposing a plan to move almost all of them into the community. After the Supreme Court’s second decision – a decade after the start of litigation – a settlement was reached to close Pennhurst by 1986 and to move residents of all of Pennsylvania’s institutions into the community when possible.

Pennhurst ultimately closed in 1987, though litigation continued through the 1990s to enforce the settlement agreement, which, despite Pennhurst’s closure, was not being well implemented. Many former residents were not being given the individualized services the consent decree required the state provide them, and in fact the court found both the state and the County of Philadelphia in contempt for numerous violations of the agreement.

Also, Szimhart now has an essay on Laura here: _

All the old lies are rehashed. He calls her anti-Semitic, a cult leader, bashes Castaneda and says that anyone who is against deviant authority is a cult. He also says he's got someone in the group who he's talking to, which could easily just be a "puffer" claim. He also, extraordinarily enough, links to this forum thread in the beginning. I just hope people who visit his site actually read the thread and check out the nasty things ole Joe-jam's been hiding! Probably wishful thinking though :halo:


Jedi Council Member
Wow. That essay he wrote about Laura.....seems like a fair bit of time was put into it....lotsa cherry picking of data and of quotes and the like.....sad...



The Living Force
Hesper said:
Also, Szimhart now has an essay on Laura here: _

All the old lies are rehashed. He calls her anti-Semitic, a cult leader, bashes Castaneda and says that anyone who is against deviant authority is a cult. He also says he's got someone in the group who he's talking to, which could easily just be a "puffer" claim. He also, extraordinarily enough, links to this forum thread in the beginning. I just hope people who visit his site actually read the thread and check out the nasty things ole Joe-jam's been hiding! Probably wishful thinking though :halo:

Isn't this the part where a 'joe supporter' (or Joe himself under his actual or a pseudonym) shows up and shows us how wrong about everything we are? ::feels like he's seen this movie before::


The Living Force
Also found this though I'm not sure what, if anything it means other than it being another lawsuit against Nell:


The appeal itself doesn't describe the content of the suit, only some legal mumble jumbo that I have a hard time deciphering. Although I found this link: _ which suggest the content of the suit has to do with 'civil rights'. It seems Mr Tillio wasn't capable of forming a coherent complaint, and thus his case was dismissed.

I've also found a few articles that mention Dr Nell:



Apparently she's often tapped to determine folks competency to stand trial when there's a mental health question involved.

She also got an award in 2005 for being an exemplary psychiatrist: _

Nothing terribly interesting there. I'll try looking with some of the other folks previously mentioned.


Jedi Master
For now just a look at the geography of the MCES (I am doing some other stuff too but its not ready yet).
I looked at this on google maps, imo one of the coolest things since the invention of the wheel :)

Here is the general area of the "Norristown State Hospital", the area backgrounded in pale red.

The NSH is actually a psychiatric hospital, it had eluded me because of the deceptive naming. From Wikipedia (
"Norristown State Hospital, originally known as the State Lunatic Hospital at Norristown, is an active psychiatric hospital located outside the city of Philadelphia in Norristown, Pennsylvania."
There are also some edifying mentions of "castrating" female inmates to subdue them and other gross stuff in that Wikipedia entry.

You'll see immediately left of the area in red, across the street, is the MCES.
See here:
If you zoom in another step you'll notice that the perimeter of the MCES building on 50 Beech Drive is a chain link fence which appears to be really high, perhaps 5 meters, and with the top curved to the inside of the facility so that people from the inside can't get out.

Second, immediately north of the NSH, across the street on Locust Drive, on the east end of the facility, are two buildings which appear to be the facility for jailing criminally insane perpetrators.
One of the buildings exhibits the typical layout of many jails in the USA: four pavillions set at in an open 'X' configuration linked by a central building with various service units. This appears to be the unit for holding people sentenced on grounds of insanity mentioned somewhere. Notice that this facility DOES NOT HAVE THE HIGH CHAIN LINK FENCE which the MCES building has.

Third, the MCES has an additional building (Building 45) assigned to them within the NSH.

Fourth, in Google Maps there is another place some streets south of the NSH marked as "MCES". It might be because of the similar name of the street (Beech Street vs. Beech Drive).
The buildings with brown roof appear to be apartment buildings although their layout appears unusual. The mark for the MCES here might be from previous tenancy by them in this area previous to the construction of that neighborhood, or it might be an error made by Google.

From all info I've seen on the MCES/NSH until now, my general impression, very carefully formulated, is that there is a mix of legitimate mental health activity, legitimate grassroots organizations of various kinds, police, provincial authorities working together, and a faction of actors of doubtful legitimacy preying on the legitimate actors of the "mental healthcare" scene of that area of Pennsylvania, and embedded there to escape detection.

Another detail of the MCES which calls my attention is that it purports to be a facility of 73 beds, which is staffed by over 200 people. Their payroll expenses are a bit above $12M for an average salary of $50K-$60K so that is plausible. What is less plausible is that these 200+ employees plus "patients" are in that fenced in building. It would make sense to think that the MCES provides a significant part f the staff of the NHS, in absence of more information or another explanation for the about 3,5:1 (employees:beds) overstaffing of the MCES.

@Guardian: I'm taking care of the names and associations of the MCES. There is LOTS to go through because they are part of a wider network. And I didn't mean that certain people are not sickos - I meant to convey that the aspect to look at is "spook action" - "sicko-ness" is a given in that milieu. I know from RL that spook agencies usually employ sickos and strange people. I'll see if I manage to post some profiles of interesting samples which I've run across during the last years :)
That's all for now.


FOTCM Member
I did a dox of the treasurer (Basile) and emailed it to Guardian. Not anything too interesting popped up there. I also started on Clifford Rogers who is likely Clifford L. Rogers, EdD, not PhD. This detail sent me on a wild goose chase of a PhD with the same name, who is a history prof at West Point. :rolleyes: I think this is our fellow, Superintendent of Perkiomen Valley School District, 2009


But that's as far as I've gotten with him, so far.
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