It has been a year now since Melissa Diegel's daughters, Kayla and Hannah, were seized by Arizona CPS and Phoenix Children's Hospital, one year since that horrible week last April when the Diegel sisters joined the ranks of not hundreds, but thousands of children in foster care in Arizona, many of whom are believed to be there unjustly. The Diegel story helped to thrust the issue of medical kidnapping into the national spotlight. In commemoration of the painful anniversary, other families and supporters joined together for an Arizona State House Umbrella Rally, to "rally for the 17,000 Arizona children currently in State Care." Umbrellas have become a symbol for these children, starting out as simply a tribute to the Diegel sisters because Hannah has always loved umbrellas. As the number of supporters grew, the umbrellas have come to symbolize much more, as a rallying cry for activists fighting to bring these children home: "All children belong under the protective umbrella of loving parents."
Leanna Smith has been fighting the State of Arizona for several years for allegedly taking away her two daughters illegally in a massive medical cover-up and fraud case. Now she gets her day in federal court on Friday April 17th in the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in San Francisco. But will justice prevail? Leanna Smith has over 1700 audio recordings of alleged interviews with government and medical personnel in the case, which have been sealed. Why have these recording been sealed for so long in Arizona courts? Will they finally be released, and will Leanna Smith be able to present her case against the State of Arizona and medical authorities in federal court? Health Impact News has published the stories of several families who claim their children were medically kidnapped in Arizona. One of the most tragic stories we have published is the story of Leanna and Darrell Smith's two daughters, which perhaps most illustrates the depth of corruption that many families have reported exists in the Arizona "medical kidnapping" system. The Smith family was completely destroyed, as they lost 2 of their 3 children, and they have been embattled in years of legal proceedings. Now, their case will be heard outside of Arizona in the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit excused two Arizona social workers from liability for threatening to take John and Tiffany Loudermilk’s children into state custody if they didn’t immediately consent to a search of their home. This result is deeply disappointing. It allows CPS workers to continue to coerce parents into cooperating by threatening to take away their children. It endorses their tactic of calling in the police to intimidate parents in their own home. And it sharply discourages parents from seeking legal counsel to find out what their rights are. This is why we at HSLDA take cases like this one. We will be asking the Supreme Court to review the case.
This new report from The Arizona Republic suggests that it is business as usual in Arizona in the area of state-sponsored child kidnappings. Arizona has the highest percentage of children being removed from biological parents and put into foster care among the 50 U.S. States. According to The Arizona Republic, Governor Ducey's office is refusing to release a whistle-blower complaint made against Greg McKay, who is now the department director the Department of Child Safety.
Justice John F. Molloy was an attorney in Arizona who went on to serve as a judge on the Arizona Superior Court bench. He is probably best known for his time serving as Chief Justice to Court of Appeals for the State of Arizona, where he authored the famous Miranda decision that was subsequently appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, resulting in what is known today as the "Miranda Rights" which law enforcement now quotes to suspected criminals upon arrest. Judge Molloy wrote a book that was published in 2004 a few years before he died in 2008. He was apparently suffering from cancer at the time, and perhaps knew his remaining time on earth was short. The title of the book is: The Fraternity: Lawyers and Judges in Collusion, published by Paragon House. It is an amazing expose on just how corrupt the American Judicial System is today, and it perhaps gives us a better understanding on how so many judges in family or juvenile courts across the United States are able to successfully remove children from the custody of their parents in medical kidnapping cases.
Dr. Gregory Smith, M.D., is the executive producer of the award winning film American Addict, and hosts a weekly radio talk show on KABC 790 in Los Angeles every Saturday night. This past Saturday, February 7, 2015, Dr. Smith discussed the problem of medical kidnapping in Arizona. He interviewed investigative reporter Jennifer Margulis, who recently covered the Leanna Smith case: Corruption and Medical Malpractice Coverup involving Arizona CPS? How One Family was Destroyed. Also interviewed on the show with Dr. Smith was Leanna Smith herself, along with Child Advocate and author Steve Isham, and Attorney Beth Maloney.
Family court in Arizona has threatened another family with a gag order, and forced them to contact Health Impact News asking us to take down their story, exposing what is happening in Arizona in abusing parental rights. Health Impact News and MedicalKidnap.com will not comply with this request.
The Associated Press and many other media outlets today (February 3, 2015) have announced that a federal class-action lawsuit was filed against the directors of the Arizona Department of Children's Services and the Department of Health Services by ten foster children in Arizona. The children in the lawsuit are represented by the groups Children's Rights, the Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest, and Phoenix law firm Coppersmith Brockelman PLC. Arizona's treatment of foster children is so bad it actually puts kids at risk of greater harm, says the federal class-action lawsuit. The lawsuit, which names as plaintiffs 10 foster children ages 3 to 14, said the agencies failed to address ongoing failures. The suit also accuses the state of a "widespread failure to engage in basic child welfare practices aimed at maintaining family relationships." That includes placing siblings together, trial reunifications with parents, adequate visitation between children and biological families, and having caseworkers visit parents to work toward reunification.
Arizona Family advocate Steve Isham was interviewed on the Robert Scott Bell radio program on Sunday February 1, 2015 to discuss the Leanna Smith medical kidnapping story. Leanna Smith claims that the State of Arizona, working together with doctors who were covering up medical malpractice with her oldest daughter, worked together with CPS to have both her daughters removed from her custody, and that they have been psychologically and sexually abused in foster care. Mr. Isham, who is familiar with Leanna's case, revealed some shocking things about his work in advocating for families in Arizona. There have been many reports of abuse within the foster care system. He recounted how he has attempted to report these alleged abuses within the Arizona child protection social services, juvenile court, and foster care, but has not been able to get anyone to investigate any of these cases. Frustrated at what appeared to be local collusion between authorities and social services, he went to the FBI: "I spent about 7 hours total time on three different occasions (with the FBI). They did nothing! They even sat there and looked me in the eye, man to man, and said, 'We know this is happening, but it's not our jurisdiction. You're going to have to get local law enforcement to do something. It's not a federal matter.' I couldn't believe it! Tell me how there are not riots in the streets now that we know the facts of the Leanna Smith case and the torture that was allowed to be perpetrated on this loving, caring, healthy, family that did what is right no matter what was done to them! How can an entire population of American’s allow this to happen to one family after another?"
In a shocking interview recorded on the Robert Scott Bell Show Thursday January 29th, 2015, Leanna Smith gave details of how her two daughters were taken away by medical authorities and CPS in Arizona, and explained how her youngest daughter has allegedly been sexually and mentally abused while in State custody. While allegations have been made against the parents as a reason for removing their two daughters, apparently no criminal charges have ever been filed against either the father or the mother. So why did Arizona take these two children away from their biological parents?