ETTINGER LAW FIRM
    ESTATE PLANNING & ELDER LAW

 

Head Office and Mailing Address:
125 Wolf Road, Albany, New York 12205
(800) 500-2525 $ FAX: (800) 500-5445
trustlaw.com


May 18, 2012


By Fax 410-974-2077


Elizabeth F. Harris, Esq.
Chief Legal Counsel
State of Maryland
Shaw House
21 State Circle
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
             
                                                 Re: Valerie Carlton

Dear Ms. Harris:  

Yesterday I was contacted by Rockland, Maryland attorney Carren Oler in the above-referenced matter.  Ms. Oler currently represents Lenna Gordon, grandmother of nine year old Winnifer Carlton, in a visitation rights proceeding in Anne Arundel County.  

Attorney Oler advised me that Russell Carlton emailed her on May 17, 2012, that he has relocated with his daughter to Patos, Paraiba, Brazil “indefinitely” – three days before Lenna Gordon’s first court ordered unsupervised visitation.

I previously wrote to Michael Schlein on November 30, 2011 and to both you and Mr. Schlein on February 24, 2012, outlining the grim history of the Carlton custody matter and the extreme improprieties calling for an immediate investigation (copies enclosed).

Briefly, I outlined documented proof of corruption in bringing false felony charges against Ms. Carlton, systemic torture and abuse of Ms. Carlton, and serious child abuse issues raised against Mr. Carlton which were consistently ignored by Harford County officials. You have advised that you reviewed the Rockland County, New York file in connection with Ms. Carlton’s extradition proceeding as well.

May 18, 2012
Elizabeth F. Harris, Esq.
Page  


The situation with Harford County and Mr. Carlton is now an international child abduction and hostage matter.  A nine year old Maryland citizen has been taken from all of her family and friends and spirited off, before the end of the school year, to a remote location in South America, where she knows no one and does not speak the language.

I have previously stated to you that an investigation is mandated.  If the bogus extradition proceeding brought by Harford County, based on the bogus assault charge, itself based on the bogus child sex abuse charges, was not enough to embarrass your office into acting, perhaps this action by Mr. Carlton might be.  Must your office wait until Mr. Carlton takes the next logical step with the child?

I am contacting the State Department about this matter and call upon the Maryland Governor’s office to finally commence an investigation and to notify all other state and Federal authorities that the law requires.  

                        
Very truly yours,

Ettinger Law Firm


By: ________________________________
Michael Ettinger, Attorney at Law

ME/pb
Enclosures

cc: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
    Carren Oler, Esq.


ETTINGER LAW FIRM
    ESTATE PLANNING & ELDER LAW

 

Head Office and Mailing Address:
125 Wolf Road, Albany, New York 12205
(800) 500-2525 $ FAX: (800) 500-5445
trustlaw.com


November 30, 2011


By UPS Overnight


Michael Schlein
Secretary of State
State of Maryland
16 Francis Street,
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
             
                                          Re: Valerie Carlton

Dear Mr. Schlein:  

The undersigned is General Counsel for Ms. Valerie Carlton, who is in Rockland County Correctional Center, New City, New York awaiting extradition from New York to Maryland.  By this letter, I am requesting a humane resolution to egregious miscarriages of justice visited upon her by local officials in Harford County and that she not be returned to Harford County Detention Center, where her civil rights were severely compromised.

Based upon my discussions with attorneys and witnesses, review of documentation and of affidavits submitted in the pending Rockland County, New York court file in Ms. Carlton’s extradition proceeding, the following may be clearly proven:  

1.    The original pedophilia charges brought against Ms. Carlton were manufactured by Harford County officials. There was no credible evidence of the facts alleged to have occurred, as shown below.  Strangely, even though Harford County courts had no subject matter jurisdiction, since the daughter she was falsely charged with abusing resided in Anne Arundel County, Harford County conducted an ultra vires investigation and charged her anyway.   

2.    Ms. Carlton was falsely vilified by state’s attorneys in the media with fantastical and untrue allegations, making her a pariah both in and out of the Detention Center. The records of the false media reports are available.  


November 30, 2011
Michael Schlein
Page 2


3.    Ms. Carlton spent thirteen months in solitary confinement for a crime she did not commit. After thirteen months in solitary, state’s attorneys forced her to plead guilty to violating a protective order (sending an email to her daughter’s teacher), in exchange for her freedom. This protective order was also falsely obtained, having been based on the faked pedophilia charges. It was also issued without Ms. Carlton being present or represented by counsel.

4.    Ms. Carlton was mentally, physically and sexually abused at Harford County Detention Center. She was subject to religious discrimination and persecution, served contaminated food and denied medical treatment. All of these records exist and are supplemented by affidavits in the court proceeding.  
        
5.    As a result of the false charges, her baby son was removed from her breast at four days old. He was placed in a negligent foster care situation where he died of asphyxiation two months later. She was not permitted to attend his funeral. Contrary to prison policy and human decency, the news of the baby’s death was brought to her not by the Chaplain, but by representatives of the Sheriff’s office. After breaking the news to Ms. Carlton, they proceeded to place her in a prearranged restraint chair to “observe her reactions”.  Wailing and moaning, she prayed aloud for her departed son’s soul in Hebrew, whereupon they accused her of “speaking in tongues” and reported to her ex-husband that she was insane. Witnesses as to the restraining chair incident are available to be interviewed.
 
6.    The extradition concerns an assault charge on a guard who suffered very minor injuries. The video shows him beating her severely. In addition, there are inconsistencies in the guard’s statement in two prison issued versions of the occurrence and a claim on the record that he immediately sought medical attention, when the video shows him instead returning immediately to his station and resuming his duties, while Ms. Carlton was dragged away.

7.    Ms. Carlton has served almost two months in Rockland County jail awaiting extradition, seriously compromising her already fragile mental health. She suffers from severe PTSD arising out of her false incarceration and solitary confinement. Ms. Carlton has been placed on suicide watch twice in the last six weeks.

8.    As a result of these gross violations and miscarriages of justice, Ms. Carlton has been unable to see her daughter, Winnifer, since the little girl was six. Despite the record showing mother and daughter had a very close relationship, Winnifer is now nine and has had no communication with her mother for almost three years. Nor has the little girl been provided with an explanation of what happened to her mother.


November 30, 2011
Michael Schlein
Page 3


9.    The state’s attorney for Harford County continues to lie with impunity and falsely vilify Ms. Carlton in the media. He recently advised a Rockland Journal News reporter that they did not prosecute because the “two little girls” recanted or forgot and that their parents did not want them to testify. In fact, one of the “two little girls” was Winnifer, who gave a 100% exculpatory interview, and the other interview (three weeks later) was of the five year old daughter of a vindictive neighbor which interview was, according to a leading forensic psychiatrist, bizarre, contradictory and rehearsed. In addition, the state’s attorney improperly participated in this latter interview, attempting to manufacture evidence. This particular neighbor had twice previously made unfounded sexual abuse charges against her own family. The records of the neighbor’s false previous claims and the interviews of the “two little girls” are available to investigators.

The Maryland Governor’s office has previously been made aware of systemic problems in Harford County and have allowed them to fester and continue unabated, resulting in the present intolerable situation. Ms. Carlton’s plight is also receiving national and international attention, per the enclosed press releases.  A full investigation is now mandated.     

The miscarriages of justice perpetrated against Ms. Carlton by Harford County should be rectified as a matter of law and of conscience. Equity dictates that (1) the assault charges against Ms. Carlton be dropped (2) that she be pardoned for the violation of the protective order falsely obtained (3) that she be provided with all necessary therapy in connection with her physical and mental injuries (4) that she be afforded adequate compensation by the State of Maryland, and (5) that visitation be arranged between mother and daughter as soon as possible.  

Please contact the undersigned if you wish to discuss this matter.
                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Very truly yours,

Ettinger Law Firm


By: ________________________________
Michael Ettinger, Attorney at Law

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Enclosures

 

ETTINGER LAW FIRM
    ESTATE PLANNING & ELDER LAW

 

Head Office and Mailing Address:
125 Wolf Road, Albany, New York 12205
(800) 500-2525 $ FAX: (800) 500-5445
trustlaw.com

 


February 24, 2012
By UPS Overnight


Michael Schlein
Secretary of State
State of Maryland
16 Francis Street
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
             
                                                 Re: Valerie Carlton

Dear Mr. Schlein:  

This correspondence is intended to provide an overview for the conference call scheduled in the above-referenced matter on Monday, February 27, 2012.

The Valerie Carlton matter is, in essence, a custody dispute gone very wrong.  It may be one of the worst custody cases in American history.  The following is an attempt to simplify the issues.

Russell Carlton chronically made his ex-wife’s visitation difficult, if not impossible. He was determined to excise her from their daughter’s life after obtaining custody.  Although the custody was improperly attained in Ms. Carlton’s view, it is not pertinent to the current state of affairs.

Finding the couple’s daughter, Winnifer, constantly rubbing her vagina, a teacher at her school in Anne Arundel County, where she lived, oddly called in a report of suspected child abuse (1) by the mother (2) to Harford County.  Why would the teacher suspect child abuse by the mother simply because the daughter was rubbing herself and then call it into the wrong county?  Someone must have prevailed on her to do so.



Michael Schlein
Page 2
February 24, 2012

Harford County investigators then interviewed Winnifer Carlton who gave a 100% exculpatory interview (Enclosed copy of interview on computer chip in envelope -- please use earphones when listening on your computer).  Winnifer did say that she wanted to see her mommy more. She stated that her vaginal area itched.  She had had chicken pox.  Her mother was treating her with Desitin.  When she went to her father’s she stated that he threw it away.  She also stated that her older cousin was exposing himself to her. Despite this exculpatory interview, a protective order was granted to Russell Carlton preventing Valerie from having any contact with her daughter. No investigation was made concerning the older boy’s inappropriate behavior.

Three weeks later, an interview was held with a second child, Natalie Anders, the five year old daughter of a feuding neighbor with a history of filing unfounded sexual abuse charges, even though the child had never complained in the six months since the alleged incident took place.  This second interview was bizarre and disjointed and made allegations of acts that took place between her and Valerie’s daughter, Winnifer.  Winnifer, the far more mature of the two little girls, was not re-interviewed to corroborate the strange claims made by Natalie.

A top forensic psychiatrist, Dr. Mark Mills, was so disturbed by the allegations that he took the Carlton case on a pro bono basis and prepared a detailed report (copy enclosed as Exhibit A) that established that the state had no plausible case.  Dr. Mills’ resume is also enclosed (Exhibit B).

Even though they had only a poorly fabricated case of no probative value, State Prosecutor Cassilly saw fit to tell the following mistruths to the media.

(1) “The two girls would take baths together…and Carlton allegedly would make the two girls perform sex acts on each other and then on Carlton.”  This appears nowhere in the testimony of the two little girls.

(2) “ These offenses began on or about January 2008 and continued through April 2009”.  Only one of the girls stated anything actually occurred and this was on a single day in Summer 2008.

(3)  “It’s alleged she performed oral sex on the children.”  A remarkably lurid and disgusting fabrication.

(4)  “The investigation has been going on for at least six months.”  This later statement was reported to the media on June 4, 2009 but the teacher’s call was less than three months earlier, on March 20, 2009.
    



Michael Schlein
Page 3
February 24, 2012

Other misstatements were made. The full copy of the media reports and a chart analyzing same are enclosed as Exhibit C.  How did they get away with these outright falsehoods?  They had exclusive control of, and access to, the interviews.  Today, however, anyone may see the truth for themselves.

As you know, Ms. Carlton was imprisoned for thirteen months in solitary on these false charges, during which time every effort was made to get her to plead guilty, including the use of various forms of torture.  Finally, she was released but not before being forced to plead guilty to violating the protective order improperly obtained from the Winnifer interview.

You are aware of the assault charge and the three months additional time served in a New York jail.  So far, this has been sixteen months in hell for an innocent woman. Meantime, the lust for incarceration of this woman by Harford County officials continues unabated.

Continuing with the history of misstatements by attorney Cassilly, he reported in November 2011 to The Rockland Journal News that “the girls changed their accounts and were not remembering what they had earlier told investigators.”  We know, from watching the interviews, that there was only one girl who made any allegations.  Furthermore, the child making the allegations forgot what she was saying and changed her story during the interview, and had to be corrected by the interviewer.  Thus Cassilly knew, even before he had Valerie Carlton arrested, that he had no case against her.  To this day, Cassilly is still calling her a pedophile to the media. The prosecutor has no shame in calling Valerie Carlton a pedophile, one of the most heinous of crimes, when they made up the case to begin with and failed to prosecute for thirteen months.  

Turning to the extradition, Cassilly again misstates by telling the New York media that he pushed for it and that “I don’t have too many assaults in the jail.” (Copies of newspaper articles published in New York are attached as Exhibit D). Not true.  In 2010 alone, he had twenty-five “assaults” or about one every two weeks.  See Exhibit E attached.

A few notable observations about the “assault” which I believe you have seen the video of. Exhibit E was prepared by Dr. Leora Rosen, a highly credentialed civil rights advocate (resume enclosed as Exhibit F). Painstaking research by Dr. Rosen shows the following.  In twelve cases, only 1 officer was involved. In eight cases, only 2 officers were involved.  In two cases, 3 officers were involved.  In two cases, 4 officers were involved.  In only one case, however, the Carlton “assault”, 8 officers were involved.



Michael Schlein
Page 4
February 24, 2012

Watching the video, one sees all seven back-up officers arrive simultaneously to assist Officer Jerousek.  How is it possible for seven officers to arrive simultaneously unless they have been assembled as a group beforehand.  The “assault” was obviously staged.  In the ordinary case, the first one or two officers arriving would have easily subdued this petite woman.  The only plausible reason for the simultaneous arrival would be to have eight witnesses for the prosecution.

Lest there be any doubt that the Carlton matter is a custody dispute, enclosed as Exhibit G are three letters sent by Russell Carlton, his mother and his mother’s boyfriend (also his employer) vilifying Ms. Carlton and claiming, in the extradition case on the assault charge, instead of a civil forum where such custody and visitation issues should be heard, that she is a danger to her child and that the judge should take this into account in releasing her. The grandmother alleges that the daughter Winnifer has “a stable, happy life but if her mother is allowed access to her, that will come to a crashing end.”  This charade, an obvious misuse and abuse of the criminal justice system, has been going on for over three years.  No civil order exists preventing Ms. Carlton’s right to visit her daughter.  Is it no wonder that Dr. Mills calls the criminal charges against Ms. Carlton a “back door civil commitment”.

There is an order on file granting Ms. Carlton visitation with her daughter five out of every six weekends, from Friday night to Sunday evening as well as on Jewish holidays.  However, Harford County has effectively banned Ms. Carlton from entering the State of Maryland and exercising her visitation rights.

Not only is the Carlton case a big lie, but there is a bigger lie in the offing.  Why is the Carlton family is so desperate that Winnie never speak to her mother?  Because her mother has been unjustly blocked from communicating with her daughter for over three years and no one knows what this child has been told about why her mother was taken away from her at age six and what happened to her mother.  Can anyone imagine what damage has been done to this now nine year old girl?

If there was any doubt as to Harford County’s mala fides in the Carlton matter, it was laid bare for all to see in the resolution of the extradition case.   New York signed the extradition warrant with  the stipulation that she not be returned to Harford County Detention Center.  Rather than give this poor woman the chance to defend herself in a nonpartisan court of law anywhere in the State of Maryland, Harford County countered instead that “we don’t want her anymore.”  This response speaks volumes about their intentions.


Michael Schlein
Page 5
February 24, 2012

Harford County is now on the record saying that they do not want her. After sixteen months of false incarceration, Harford County must now withdraw the highly questionable assault charges.  They cannot claim in one forum that they do not want her and in another forum that they do.  Should they fail to withdraw the charges as law and justice requires, she will bring a motion to dismiss for failure to prosecute and, in support of same, will submit the entire New York case file into evidence in Maryland for the entire state and media to pore over and consider.  It is all there in black and white.

The Governor’s office may also wish to consider granting an amnesty to Ms. Carlton on the assault charge and a pardon on the misdemeanor violation.

It is time to put an end to this travesty and gross miscarriage of justice.
                                                                                                                                                                                                         
Very truly yours,

Ettinger Law Firm


By: ________________________________
Michael Ettinger, Attorney at Law

ME/pb
Enclosures

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