Monday, August 28, 2006

Another Connecticut Conspiracy to deny Human Rights and the Ability to Sue Government

Official Connecticut, is about lies, thuggery, and retaliation.

The below, tells how far Connecticut and Officials with too much power can go:

Supreme Court Overturns Mother's Conviction In Son's Suicide

12:23 PM EDT, August 28, 2006 Associated Press

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- The state Supreme Court on Monday unanimously overturned a mother's conviction for contributing to her 12-year-old son's suicide by creating an unsafe and unhealthy home.

Judith Scruggs of Meriden was convicted of risk of injury to a minor in October 2003 after her son, J. Daniel, hanged himself with a necktie in his closet in January 2002.

She said he killed himself because of constant bullying at school and filed a federal lawsuit against Meriden school officials contending they should have done more to stop the bullying.

Scruggs was thrust into the national spotlight and legal experts said they believed it was the first time a parent had ever been convicted in connection with a child's suicide.

In Monday's ruling, Justice William Sullivan wrote that the law used to convict Scruggs was unconstitutionally vague and ordered the trial court to acquit her.

"The state has pointed to no statutes, published or unpublished court opinions in this state or from other jurisdictions, newspaper reports, television programs or other public information that would support a conclusion that the defendant should have known that the conditions in her apartment posed an unlawful risk to the mental health of a child," Sullivan wrote.

Messages seeking comment were left with attorneys in the case.The case inspired a new state law requiring schools to report bullies to authorities, and many school districts revamped bullying policies.

The attorney defending Scruggs argued in court three years ago that no psychologist or counselor ever testified that her filthy home was a factor in her son's death.

Scruggs was sentenced to probation rather than jail time. The state Supreme Court weighed whether the evidence was sufficient and whether the law she was convicted under was too vague because it does not indicate that failure to provide a clean home environment is criminal conduct.

Authorities testified that the Scruggs home was so dirty that the medical examiner had to climb over heaps of debris to get to the boy's body.

The above found here on the web.

Who can you trust?

Babara S. Sattal
Were your federal tax dollars used to pay her to date and ruin me to further cost you, the federal taxpayer?

Telling Connecticut Government my thoughts, live at the Capitol

Added Aug. 29, 2006, at 7:05 AM EST:

Court Ends Scruggs' `Hell' Reverses Conviction Linked To Son's Suicide
August 29, 2006 By LYNNE TUOHY, Courant Staff Writer

The state Supreme Court has reversed the felony conviction of Judith Scruggs in the high-profile case in which a jury determined that her cluttered and dirty home contributed to the 2002 suicide of her 12-year-old son, J. Daniel Scruggs.

In its unanimous ruling, the high court concluded that a provision of the state's risk-of-injury-to-a-minor law is unconstitutionally vague in that it makes no reference to poor housekeeping being a potentially criminal act.

"There were several explanations for Daniel's state of mind and behavior ... including the relentless bullying that he endured at school and his inherently fragile psyche," Senior Justice William J. Sullivan stated.

The Supreme Court sent the case back to the trial court with instructions to enter a judgment of acquittal, meaning Scruggs cannot be tried again.

Scruggs, 55, of Meriden, said Monday she feels vindicated by the ruling, but has been living under a cloud since her October 2003 conviction. She was sentenced to probation and community service.

"It's been emotional," she said.

"No parent contributes to their child's death. To say so is extremely damaging to any parent who's lost a child. Not only that, but John Q. Public looks at you like you're guilty.

There's no place to live.

No one gives you a job.

It's been hell.

"Kevin and Maryellen Murphy are close friends of Scruggs, and their son, John, was Daniel's best friend. Kevin Murphy said John raced to Scruggs' apartment when he heard about the court's ruling. Kevin Murphy said the ruling is a relief, but not a surprise.

"Right is right," Murphy said.

"When we found out, it was like, wow, it's about time. This poor lady's been through so much. We watched our best friend be crumbled by the system."

"She's still Judy," Murphy added.

"But she's become so sad. It's hard. We try to hold her up and support her, but she's like an emotional wreck. Just them alone accusing you of hurting your own child, then adding insult to injury by saying you can't have a job because you're a convicted felon; you can't have housing because of the publicity. She's been through the mill."

Evidence presented during the trial showed that Daniel did not bathe regularly, was distraught over intense bullying by other students at his Meriden middle school, and sometimes would defecate in his pants during school. During the four months of school before his death, Daniel was absent 45 days and was tardy 29 times.

Two justices in Monday's ruling wrote separately to emphasize that investigators from the state Department of Children and Families had visited Scruggs' home just days before Daniel hung himself in the closet of his bedroom.

Not only did they close the case file on Daniel, but they instructed his mother to keep him home until a new school could be found for him.

"Only days before Daniel's death, the agency of the state of Connecticut that is dedicated to protecting children from abuse and neglect had, by its conduct and words, sent a clear message to [Judith Scruggs] that the department saw no significant cause for concern regarding Daniel's health and welfare," acting Chief Justice David M. Borden wrote in a concurring opinion joined by Justice Richard Palmer.

"Indeed, the department's message was that [Scruggs] should keep Daniel home from school in the very conditions that the same state of Connecticut, through its criminal prosecution arm, later charged created an unreasonable risk to his mental health," Borden said.

Sullivan appeared to embrace this point of view when the justices heard arguments in the case in April.

"If DCF closes an investigation at my house, I have a right to assume that what I am doing is proper," Sullivan stated during the arguments.

One of the police officers who responded to the reported suicide on Jan. 2, 2002, testified that the apartment was "extremely messy and dirty, very cluttered," and had piles of debris and laundry and a foul odor.

After the jury returned its guilty verdict, Scruggs' trial attorney, M.H. Reese Norris, asked Superior Court Judge Stephen F. Frazzini to order an acquittal. Frazzini declined, saying "any layperson with common sense could conclude that the squalor and home living environment here created a risk to Daniel's emotional health."

The Supreme Court disagreed.

"We recognize that there may be generally accepted housekeeping norms and that it may be common knowledge that, all things being equal, a clean and orderly home is preferable to a dirty and cluttered home," Sullivan wrote."

"The same could be said of any number of conditions and actions that affect a child's well-being."

"It may be common knowledge, for example, that drinking milk is healthier than a constant diet of soft drinks, reading books is preferable to constant exposure to television programs, large cars are safer than small cars, playing computer games is safer than riding a bicycle, and so on," Sullivan added.

"All of these comparisons, however, involve virtually infinite gradations of conduct, making it extremely difficult, if not impossible, for an ordinary person to know where the line between potentially harmful but lawful conduct, and unlawful conduct lies or, indeed, whether that line exists at all."

Sullivan distinguished the Scruggs case from a line of cases in which the court has upheld convictions for risk of injury to a minor when children were in the proximity of drugs in the home.

"We do not rule out the possibility that a home environment could be so squalid that an ordinary person should be expected to know that it poses a risk to the mental health of a child," Sullivan wrote.

"The testimony in the present case established, however, that there was no sign in the defendant's apartment of rats, mice or other vermin, animal or human waste, or rotting food or garbage. Moreover, the trial court found that the conditions were not so bad that they would pose a threat to a child's physical health."

In a footnote to its ruling, the court said "much of the clutter consisted of Christmas-related items, such as presents, cards, wrapping paper, books, toys, seasonal decorations, knickknacks and other items suggesting that [Scruggs] had attempted to provide a cheerful holiday for her children."

Senior Assistant State's Attorney Leon Dalbec Jr., who argued the appeal for the state, took issue with the court's tying the condition of the home to Christmas-related items.

"Anybody who saw this evidence knows the house was filthy," Dalbec said.

Senior Assistant State's Attorney James Dinnan, who prosecuted the case, could not be reached for comment.

"It was a terrible case," Dalbec said of Daniel's suicide.

"The prosecutor was just doing what he felt was best, but the court felt otherwise."

At the time of Daniel's death, Scruggs was working full time at a Meriden school and another 20 hours a week at a Wal-Mart store.

She is hoping, with her conviction vacated, that she can now find a steady job.

"I went from 60 hours a week down to nothing," she said.

Contact Lynne Tuohy at

Smoking Gun Text
contains testimony I gave March 21, 2006, Hartford Capitol, Connecticut

My Open Letter to Connecticut Chief Justice William J. Sullivan
If felonies and other crimes were committed by Judges and others under Sullivan, is Sullivan guilty of obstruction of justice, conspiracy, and other crimes? Should Sullivan be arrested?

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