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April 12, 2005

David Gibbs Law Firm To Advise McLeod-Mullinax Family: Alabama Advocacy Center Joins Fray

Topics: News

Per email from Ken Mullinax:
David Gibbs, the lead attorney for Terri Schiavo's natural family, has agreed to allow Ken Mullinax to publicly state that "David Gibbs is now advising the McLeod-Mullinax family in regards to Mae Magouirk." They will be doing a teleconference with him tomorrow.

The Alabama Advocacy Center at the University of Alabama Law School is now investigating this case after today speaking with Jim Tucker, lead litigator. Elder abuse is one of the many avenues they will look into in regards with Mae Magouirk.

Ken Mullinax is to appear on Sean Hannity tonight(Hannity-Colmes) between 830pm and 900pm CST.

Posted by richard at April 12, 2005 2:22 PM


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Not quite related to this topic; but I promised Judge Boyd I would get this information out... I have been in communcation back and forth with Judge Boyd. He states he was always on the side of helping Mae to receive adequate medical treatment as well as food and liquid as specified in his court order. He states that when his order was violated, no one contacted him and had they done so sooner, he said that he would have been able to help Mae sooner. He implied that Kenneth Mullinax came to us first before going to him. (my opinion, I don't blame Kenneth; he may have just been distrustful of judges after Terri's scenario). Anyway, he encourages Kenneth or anyone else to notify him immediately if his order to feed and treat Mae is not carried out or there are any other violations of his order. (a bit hard for us since we don't have a copy of the order). Anyway, my message is to Kenneth... please notify Judge Boyd immediately if there are ongoing problems with yours and Mae's situation. I believe he is sincere in his desire to help however he can.

Also, when I asked him, the judge said he might consider making a media statement about the case or go on national television depending on whether he was agreeable to the parameters/expectations that might be placed on him.

Posted by: Anna_Nordin at April 12, 2005 3:10 PM

Dare we hope that attorney Gibbs will tell his client to keep his mouth shut while he works the case? A little quiet time could do wonders for all concerned.

Posted by: Creatureofhabit at April 12, 2005 3:28 PM

Yes, but now that he knows Beth Gaddy defied his order why has he not cited her for contempt of court? Why does she remain as Mae's medical guardian?

Posted by: Danny Carlton at April 12, 2005 3:30 PM

Sherri published a copy of the order. It's here:

http://www.blogsforterri.com/docs/MagouirkOrderApril1%5B1%5D.pdf

Posted by: Sue Bob at April 12, 2005 5:13 PM

Anna, good work. Quick question: is it ia case of some one of the parties involved having to actually report to him before he can act (legally)? I realize that he must realize how long it took the doctors to make their decision (more than the 24 hours he gave, for instance) or the other things that have happened in error, now, but since I don't know much about legal things, is this a situation where his hands are tied as far as what he can do, unless one of the parties actually comes back to him?

I think too, that it was just probably hard to know if he was trustworthy, for Ken, and Mae's sister and brother, after watching Judge Greer, and once the days began slipping by. Plus, the sister, brother and Ken, trying to help Mae may not have realized that they could go back to the jusdge, if they are as unknowledgeable as I would be for instance, about legal matters and what can or can't be done. And they were probably scared and a bit frantic at that time, too. (I know I would be!)

Posted by: juleni at April 12, 2005 5:13 PM

Anna,

Did he say anything to you about his allowing Ms. Gaddy to remain as guardian after violating his order or about any citation for same?

Other than that, I think Judge Boyd has responded to our questions quite admirably. The Greers out there should take note.

RWR

Posted by: RightWingRocker at April 12, 2005 5:34 PM

Wow, Sue Bob. Thank you - I had not seen that before. I read through it, and what was frightening to me was what Mae herself stated, which was quoted in her sister and brother's filing that was later withdrawn (the filing withdrawn, not the statement of Mae's words):

Mae - "I have discovered that Beth (Gaddy) is writing unauthorized checks on my account. I just can't trust her anymore at all. Would you please get with me and tell me what I need to do to have her removed from doing this. Also, I want to replace Beth and appoint you (Buddy) (her brother) to have my power of attorney and to act on my behalf if I get sick."

!!

Mae - "Lonnie (her sister), I am scared Beth is stealing money from my checking account. I have told Buddy already and ask him to please help me remove her from being able to do it. If you feel its OK, I want to appoint Buddy as my guardian."

!!!!

Posted by: juleni at April 12, 2005 5:45 PM

Did Lonnie and Buddy forget that Mae said those things? Why did they agree to Beth being her guardian?

Posted by: Wilson at April 12, 2005 5:59 PM

The arrangement is temporary and it has not been made permanent. I am sure that this is a judge who will do the right thing.

I hope that Ken will meet with Judge Boyd and that he will learn to trust the judge. It is Mae's welfare that is of concern.

Posted by: Maggie4life at April 12, 2005 6:32 PM

Wilson,

I can't figure that out either. I wonder if the attorney for the siblings thought that the hearing was going badly and convinced the siblings that making a deal to have the 3 doctor panel decide was the safest course of action. Sometimes attorneys read things into how a judge conducts the hearing to weigh the risks of proceeding and leaving it all up to the judge.

Posted by: Sue Bob at April 12, 2005 6:33 PM

RWR: the temporary guardianship is good for 45 days or until a permanent hearing is held.

juleni: The judge can't do anything without another hearing (due process and all that). He could call one himself, and ask Ms. Gaddy to answer the various allegations, but that would be highly unusual. It's more likely he would wait for a petition from the other side. Since the other side has not filed a petition to revoke the guardianship yet, it is likely that either (a) the facts are not quite as bad as they have been alleged by the Alabama family, or more likely, (b) since Mae is being treated and is out of immediate danger, the lawyers are spending their time and effort investigating and gathering facts so they can hit the judge with everything at once, probably at the hearing to appoint a permanent guardian, which must happen within 45 days.

Posted by: Creatureofhabit at April 12, 2005 6:34 PM

Dear Juleni (from 5:13 posting): The only way the judge can know what is going on and therefore act is to get a report/complaint from someone. Re: the lateness of the doctors report... I'll have to read the court order to see how the 24 hour thing is worded. I think placing a series of contempt charges may have other legal ramifications for Judge Boyd (i.e. maybe it's not the standard of law) and since Mae did not die as a result of their tardiness... I don't know what to say. I still think in the big picture he's doing a pretty good job, at least we can be assured he's not pro-death.


Dear RWR (from 5:43 posting): I didn't ask him specifically about removing Gaddy as guardian, I only asked him to consider at least making Beth Gaddy and Ken Mullinax co-guardians. Although I'm curious about your question too; my sense was that I don't want to push him too far by asking him a lot of questions, he might get offended and I'd then lose his confidence. I do have the impression he will consider all reasonable suggestions from us. Ken M, Ken M's attorney and and Beth G's attorney requested Beth G be guardian, Judge Boyd wasn't part of the decision making process, and I think the onus is on our friend Mr. Gibbs who is now involved to make a motion for the judge to change the guardian situation.

Posted by: Anna_Nordin at April 12, 2005 6:56 PM

Anna, the Judge's order regarding the doctors says "As time is of the essence, the Court requests that the doctors confer and make their recommendation within 24 hours of this order, if possible, and if not possible, at the earliest possible time."

It is clarified elsewhere in the document that time is of the essence because an aortic dissection and blood clot (which she also has) is a life-threatening medical condition and if it's going to be treated that needs to happen quickly.

Posted by: purple_kangaroo_Angela at April 12, 2005 8:02 PM

Sue Bob

When you question if Kenneth and his family thought it was going badly--

YOU ARE CORRECT (as usual)! That is exactly what they thought.

Posted by: Straight Up with Sherri at April 12, 2005 8:13 PM

Judge Boyd seems fairly reasonable to me, I guess in light of comparing him to Judge Greer..

Am I correct in understanding that Mrs. Gaddy's guardianship is only good until the middle of May or thereabouts?

Posted by: Midwest Kay at April 12, 2005 10:15 PM

Midwest Kay, it is good for 45 days or until a hearing to appoint a more permament guardian is held, whichever comes first.

Posted by: purple_kangaroo_Angela at April 12, 2005 10:56 PM