Child Rapist Daniel Greer has been trying to get out of being compelled by Plaintiff Mirlis to take the witness stand at trial. If this were a criminal trial, Greer would have the luxury to sit at his attorneys table and let his lawyer tell the Judge that he is not going to take the witness stand under the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution. Because this is a civil trial, the Attorney for Plaintiff Mirlis has the right to call Greer to the witness stand and ask him questions. The jury will get to hear Greer himself tell everyone in the Courthouse that he will not answer any questions about whether he raped Eli Mirlis and Avi Hack as children because his answers would cause him to incriminate himself.
Daniel Greer might as well come clean and admit his transgressions. It is obvious to everyone at this point that he is guilty as charged. At least if he admitted his sins he will be able to properly repent. Admitting you have a problem is the first step.
Greer’s attorney Ward has been filing motions asking Judge Shea to exempt Daniel Greer from having to take the witness stand and take the Fifth Amendment. Greer wanted to sit at counsel’s table and not say anything. Yesterday Judge Shea denied Ward’s request.
Judge Shea also ordered the parties to only ask questions related to what is contained in the medical report of Julian D. Ford, PhD. Dr. Ford’s report is not available to the public.
Dr. Ford is a professor at the UCONN Health Center in the Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Ford is an expert in PTSD. Dr. Ford is going to be called to testify by Mirlis. Dr. Ford is expected to testify that Mirlis has been suffering PTSD since he was raped by Daniel Greer as a teenager. The lawyers have been fighting about whether Dr. Ford should be allowed to testify about the significance of Mirlis continuing a relationship with Greer long after the rapes ended. Dr. Ford’s report was not clear about this issue. The Judge ordered that Dr. Ford could only talk about what is contained in his written report, and not go much beyond that.
Dr. Ford may not be able to testify about whether it is typical behavior of sufferers of PTSD caused by child rape to continue to maintain a relationship with their abusers. Mirlis continued to go to the compound and visit Greer long after the rape ceased. Greer was a witness at Mirlis’ wedding. Greer was present at the birth of Mirlis’ son. Greer spoke at the funeral of Mirlis’ father.
Why would Mirlis continue a relationship with Greer long after he left the compound? Avi Hack also continued a relationship with Greer long after Greer stopped raping him. Avi was Greer’s right hand man running the compound. Repeated victimization is a common problem in child sexual abuse cases. Studies show that of women who experienced incestuous abuse as children, two thirds were subsequently raped as adults.
“Children who are abused by people they are close to learn to equate love with violence and sexual exploitation. They have not learned to create safe and appropriate boundaries with people, and they grow up unable to see themselves as having any right to choice. Their self-image is so damaged that they may see nothing wrong with even extremely abusive treatment of them by others. Many traumatized people expose themselves, seemingly compulsively, to situations reminiscent of the original trauma. These behavioral reenactments are rarely consciously understood to be related to earlier life experiences. Survivors of earlier rape and abuse may put themselves at risk of further harm, not because they want to be abused or hurt, but because they may be seeking a different, better outcome, or to have more control.” http://www.pandys.org/articles/revictimization.html
Here is a copy of the latest Court order:
ORDER. The Court held a pretrial conference today with Antonio Ponvert, attorney for the Plaintiff, and David Grudberg, William Ward, and Amanda Nugent, attorneys for the Defendants. For the reasons discussed at the conference, the Court hereby rules as follows:
1. The Court DENIES without prejudice Defendants’ 108 motion in limine to preclude forced testimony of Daniel Greer. For the reasons discussed on the record, the Court will not prevent the plaintiff from calling Daniel Greer to the stand or even from asking him some questions as to which he might reasonably be expected (based on his deposition answers) to invoke his Fifth Amendment rights. Nonetheless, as discussed in more detail at the conference, this ruling is without prejudice to the Defendants’ right to object to (specific) questions that may pose dangers of cumulativeness or waste of time, or may reach a point where the probative value is substantially outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice – as in the case of repeated, leading, fact-specific questions aimed at eliciting a string of Fifth Amendment invocations.
2. The Court GRANTS IN PART AND DENIES IN PART Defendants’ 109 motion in limine to limit the scope of testimony of Plaintiff’s expert, Julian D. Ford, Ph.D. As discussed in more detail at the conference, the Plaintiff may not elicit on direct examination matters not covered in Dr. Ford’s report or CV, including the specific topic identified by Attorney Grudberg at the conference, namely, details of or opinions about the continuing relationship between Plaintiff and Defendant Greer and the significance of that relationship, except as that topic is expressly discussed in Dr. Ford’s report.
3. Plaintiffs 105 motion for opening statement is GRANTED. Each side will have no more than 15 minutes to give an opening statement.
4. Plaintiffs 104 motion for voir dire is DENIED.
5. At the conference, the parties informed the Court that they anticipate filing amended exhibit lists. Therefore, the parties shall file on the docket by 5:00 pm on May 5, 2017, any such amended exhibit lists and any objections to the exhibits listed therein.
6. The Court will reserve judgment on the remaining motions in limine.
Signed by Judge Michael P. Shea on 5/2/2017. (Howard, H.) (Entered: 05/02/2017)