Day 2 - Fessler vs. Watchtower – Thomas Jefferson Jr takes the stand in Jehovah’s Witness Child Abuse Trial

by darkspilver 102 Replies latest watchtower child-abuse

  • Richard Oliver
    Richard Oliver

    John Redwood:

    You may want to be careful. You stated:

    In Stephanie's case, she would have, in my opinion, won a much larger amount, possibly in the tens of millions.

    I am sure you were not told. But it could be construed that there was the possibility that you were told the final settlement amount. That would be a violation of the non-disclosure clause that have been reported as part of the settlement, that would cause sanctions against the plaintiff and their counsel if that clause was violated.

  • Fisherman

    Does anyone know what the Complaint states is the compensation Stephanie said she wanted in this case?

  • darkspilver

    Fisherman: Does anyone know what the Complaint states is the compensation Stephanie said she wanted in this case?

    See my previous post in the Pre-trial thread


    You can see the article on the PennLive website, which also links through at the court documents

    Anyway, it was $1.9 million

  • OrphanCrow
    RO: ... it could be construed...

    Only you, Richard. Only you.

  • Richard Oliver
    Richard Oliver

    DId I say that I construed it. He just has to be careful how he says it because she could loose a good portion of money if she does tell people what the end result was in financial terms. Watchtower could go back and sue her for a portion of what was paid out.

  • OrphanCrow
    RO: DId I say that I construed it.

    Yes. You were the only one coming to that conclusion.

    Stephanie had asked for 1.9 million. Redwood had said: " In Stephanie's case, she would have, in my opinion, won a much larger amount, possibly in the tens of millions."

    The leap from possibly 1.9 million (we don't know if she got the entire amount she had asked for) to possibly "tens of millions" doesn't lead a sane and rational person to the conclusion that you offered.

  • Richard Oliver
    Richard Oliver

    You also have to include the fact that he has made it clear that he is a ardent supporter of her and is very close to the case. He has stated at least in private to me that he speaks with these attorneys and plantiffs all the time. Individuals who make those type of claims has to be extra careful about how they talk because it can be construed that way.

  • Richard Oliver
    Richard Oliver

    And Orphan crow. John Redwood never stated that he is basing his value of much more on the 1.9 million that she was asking for in the complaint. He never used that number in that statement. He said that in his opinion that she could have won more, but won more based on what number. Either he is taking a shot in the dark as to what the number is or he knows that the number is. That is what any lawyer worth his salt would question. And either John would have to confirm that he doesn't know all the facts or confirm that he was told the final settlement amount.

  • Fisherman
    And either John would have to confirm that he doesn't know all the facts or confirm that he was told the final settlement amount.

    And that is only for a Court to decide if what someone construed is true -it may or may not- but a Court may find enough evidence that it is and Plaintiffs and attorneys may ironically find themselves as Defendants wanting to settle instead of having to pay the expensive price to defend -win or loose the case.

  • John Redwood
    John Redwood

    For the record, I stated that a jury verdict could have resulted in a settlement of tens of millions, which would be followed by an appeal by Watchtower, which is well within their rights to do. Naturally we would expect that an appeal would take a significant amount of time, and possibly result in a reduction of the original amount awarded by the jury. We simply don't know, because this is hypothetical, and it never happened.

    What did happen was that Watchtower settled for an undisclosed amount. That is the end of the story, and people are free to speculate all they want. I saw one blogger claim that she won 2 million dollars, but he admitted it was all speculation based on his personal experience with JW child abuse settlements. This means nothing. If the amount is not disclosed, then it is not disclosed. Period. All the guessing in the world will not give anyone the answer to this question.

    Hence we need to concentrate on the facts. What happened both before and during the trial? Why did it happen? How does it relate to other cases? How will it affect Watchtower in future cases? How will it protect children in the future? Will awareness be heightened? Will Watchtower change its policies? These are all important questions which are open for discussion. Any settlement amount is not open for discussion.

    In my case, I saw what happened, start to finish, and I will report the facts.

    While I am certainly a supporter of Stephanie Fessler, I am also a supporter of truth an justice, which means I agree that Watchtower deserved a chance to defend itself in court. If they had provided evidence that they did indeed comply with state laws, I would have reported this, and you can be assured that the trial would have continued. However that is not what happened. We all know that Watchtower settled because they were unable, despite their best efforts, to defend themselves. They "cut their losses" and decided it was best to move on. This is their right, and they made an agreement which was accepted by the plaintiff.

    At the beginning of this trial, judge Collins told the jury that she was the sole determiner of the law, but that the jury was the sole determiner of the facts of this case. The jury took this very seriously. Once the trial was complete, they voiced their opinions, and they made it clear that the elders and the organization had an obligation to report, but they failed to do so.

    On multiple occasions, Watchtower attempted to object on 1st Amendment grounds, but was shut down every time. A strong message was sent that while religions have rights, they do not have the right to prevent a minor from receiving protection from civil authorities when there is a suspicion that they have been abused. The reality is that most religions agree with this, and they co-exist peacefully under the governments they are subject to.

    Jehovah's Witnesses are a different animal. They are, according to their beliefs, not subject to any laws which oppose their interpretation of "Caesar's" laws, which is the source of their dilemmas. In the end, the powers which exist in this country and other civilized nations will, and are, prevailing against the dogmas which place our children, our minds, and our bodies at risk.


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