Archive for the ‘Delaware’ Category

High court suspends lawyer after thefts reported

October 22, 2012

An attorney who leads Laurel’s school board has been temporarily barred from practicing law after he acknowledged keeping fees paid by clients hidden from other partners in his law firm, the state’s highest court says.

Patrick E. Vanderslice, 44, of Laurel, was suspended from the bar for a year by the Delaware Supreme Court, a more severe level of discipline than the public reprimand and probation the state’s Board on Professional Responsibility had advised was the proper punishment. The decision came after Vanderslice admitted to his partners at the Georgetown firm Moore & Rutt, P.A., he had stolen $1,780 in client fees from December 2010 to September 2011.

“Because Vanderslice committed theft (an offense involving dishonesty and a breach of trust,) we conclude that he should be ‘professionally answerable’ for his conduct,” the Supreme Court wrote in an Oct. 12 opinion. “A public reprimand, usually reserved for inexperienced lawyers… would be unduly lenient.

Full Article and Source:
High court suspends lawyer after thefts reported

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>Feds Say Delaware’s Mentally Ill Still Warehoused

November 21, 2010

>The Delaware Psychiatric Center warehouses the mentally ill and fails to protect them from harm, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division concluded in a scathing report made public.

The 21-page report, delivered to Gov. Jack Markell’s office, is based on a three-year federal investigation triggered by a series of News Journal stories about patient abuse at the state’s mental institution on U.S. 13 near Minquadale.

Among the report’s conclusions:
• At least 70 percent, and perhaps more, of the 170 patients in beds for noncriminals “could be — and have a right to be — living in community settings with appropriate services and supports.” The average stay should be three to six months, but instead it’s about three years. One top state administrator told investigators “pretty much everyone at DPC would be appropriate for community placement.”

• Delaware’s shortage of community programs, particularly crisis services, leads to “unnecessary institutionalization.” Expansion of existing programs “would lead to a significant cost savings” for state taxpayers.

• Patients are too often put in restraints or seclusion “for excessive periods” to control aggressive behavior. Such action not only violates their constitutional right to due process, but illustrates the hospital’s “inadequate assessment and treatment of risks.”

• Patients face a “high risk” of abuse and neglect, especially those awaiting discharge. In one case, an employee hit a patient in the head with a set of keys, causing cuts that “required sutures and staples to close.” In addition, investigations into serious incidents are often inadequate.

Full Article and Source:
Feds Say Delaware’s Mentally Ill Still Warehoused

AstroZeneca Settles Nearly 4,000 Seroquel Injury Claims

August 6, 2010

AstraZeneca PLC said July 29 that it has agreed in principle to settle with nearly 4,000 Seroquel product liability plaintiffs.

The company said settlement terms are confidential.

In notes to its second-quarter financial report, AstraZeneca said that as of July 27, mediation ordered by Judge Anne C. Conway in the Seroquel multidistrict litigation in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida “has resulted in agreements in principle on monetary terms, subject to various subsequent conditions, approvals and agreement on non-monetary terms, with the attorneys representing nearly 4,000 claimants.”

As of June 29, AstraZeneca said it was defending against 10,363 served or answered Seroquel lawsuits in the United States involving 22,412 plaintiff groups. It said about 72 percent of the cases are in state courts, primarily Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Alabama. The remaining 28 percent are in the MDL court.

As of July 8, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation reported that there were 6,217 active MDL cases, down from a high of 8,187.

Claims of about 1,000 plaintiffs are consolidated in one federal court in California, AstraZeneca said.

In addition, AstraZeneca said it is aware of about 176 additional cases representing about 3,661 plaintiffs that have been filed but not yet served. It said some of the cases involve other drug manufacturers, such as Eli Lilly and Co., Janssen Pharmaceutica Inc. and/or Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

Full Article and Source:
Astrazeneca Settles Nearly 4,000 Seroquel Injury Claims, Terms Confidential

Ex-Judge Disbarred for Abuse More Than 30 Years Ago

April 15, 2010

The Delaware Supreme Court ordered the disbarment of a former judge who admitted earlier this year to sexually abusing an 11-year-old boy more than 30 years ago.

William C. Bradley Jr.’s disbarment was based on a “professional misconduct involving moral turpitude,” according to the one-page order the state’s highest court.

Neither Bradley, 72, nor his attorney, Mason Turner, could be reached for comment.

A week after resigning as Court of Common Pleas judge in January, Bradley admitted to molesting Gregory Kelly at his home: “On or about the evening of Dec. 28, 1975, and Dec. 29, 1975, while present in my home located in Townsend, Delaware, I molested Gregory Kelly, then age 11, through inappropriate sexual contact. I deeply regret any harm I have caused to Gregory Kelly and his family.”

The statement, and an undisclosed cash payment, were part of a settlement arising out of a lawsuit filed by Kelly in U.S. District Court in Wilmington.

Full Article and Source:
Delaware Courts: Ex-Judge Disbarred for Abuse

Milford Woman Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud

September 13, 2009

A Milford woman has pleaded guilty to tax fraud, theft and perjury.

The Division of Revenue announced Thursday that 46-year-old Georgeina Ranshaw pleaded guilty in Kent County Superior Court.

Ranshaw owned Nurses on the Go, which served elderly and disabled individuals needing personal care, and operated Littleman’s Cleaning Service. Officials say she grossed $600,000 in earnings from the two businesses, but failed to file a tax return.

Officials say Ranshaw admitted that she used her grandson’s Social Security number on a business license application for the cleaning business, concealing her ownership.

As a result of the plea, officials say Ranshaw was ordered not to be involved at all in the home health care business or the care or guardianship of the elderly.

Renshaw’s sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 27.

Source:
Milford Woman Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud

Online Adult Abuse Registry

August 6, 2009
Delaware residents who need a caregiver for their elderly loved ones now have an easier way to check up on a potential hire.

The state has activated an online Adult Abuse Registry that anyone can access to learn whether a caregiver has been investigated by the Department of Health and Social Services for a complaint of abuse, neglect or financial exploitation of the elderly.

The registry has existed for years, but not on the Internet. Previously, anyone making a request to check a name would have to do so in writing and wait for weeks to get the results. With the online registry, the results are instantaneous.

House Majority Whip Valerie J. Longhurst: “I hope this gives people the peace of mind that they can get information and access it quickly.”

Longhurst sponsored House Bill 165, which created the online registry and requires health care providers, nursing homes and similar facilities to use it before making a hire. The bill — championed by AARP of Delaware — passed the House and Senate unanimously and was signed by Gov. Jack Markell on June 30.

Full Article and Source:
Registry offers instant access to elder care complaints

>Online Adult Abuse Registry

August 6, 2009

>

Delaware residents who need a caregiver for their elderly loved ones now have an easier way to check up on a potential hire.

The state has activated an online Adult Abuse Registry that anyone can access to learn whether a caregiver has been investigated by the Department of Health and Social Services for a complaint of abuse, neglect or financial exploitation of the elderly.

The registry has existed for years, but not on the Internet. Previously, anyone making a request to check a name would have to do so in writing and wait for weeks to get the results. With the online registry, the results are instantaneous.

House Majority Whip Valerie J. Longhurst: “I hope this gives people the peace of mind that they can get information and access it quickly.”

Longhurst sponsored House Bill 165, which created the online registry and requires health care providers, nursing homes and similar facilities to use it before making a hire. The bill — championed by AARP of Delaware — passed the House and Senate unanimously and was signed by Gov. Jack Markell on June 30.

Full Article and Source:
Registry offers instant access to elder care complaints

>Guardians Can Now Adopt Wards

May 30, 2009

>

A bill allowing legal guardians to adopt children in their care is now law.

The bill signed by Governor Markell adds legal guardians to the list of people who can petition family court to terminate parental rights and seek adoption.

The bill’s co-sponsors, Representative Pam Thornburg and Senator Nancy Cook, say the new law will help about 100 families in Delaware give kids under their guardianship stable, secure environments in which to grow up.

Source:
Gov. signs bill allowing guardians to adopt

Guardians Can Now Adopt Wards

May 30, 2009
A bill allowing legal guardians to adopt children in their care is now law.

The bill signed by Governor Markell adds legal guardians to the list of people who can petition family court to terminate parental rights and seek adoption.

The bill’s co-sponsors, Representative Pam Thornburg and Senator Nancy Cook, say the new law will help about 100 families in Delaware give kids under their guardianship stable, secure environments in which to grow up.

Source:
Gov. signs bill allowing guardians to adopt

Fight For Freedom

May 8, 2009
Elder abuse!!! Don’t let it happen to someone you love

Losing Control: Bringing Maydelle Home

“Losing Control” Update: Maydelle Cleared to go Home

Probate Court: Offering Unequal Protection Under the Law

2006 Federal Options to Improve America’s Ailing Guardianship System: A White Paper for the Senate Special Committee on Aging

Fox 5 Investigates: Guardian Abuse

Maydelle’s Homecoming

Maydelle is free at last

Our family’s nightmare began in August 2004. My parents, Ralph and Maydelle Trambarulo, had moved to Delaware to be near son Paul in 2003, after living in Red Bank, NJ for 47 years. Mom, 77, suffers from Parkinson’s disease and related dementia. Dad, 83, suffers from normal pressure hydrocephalus, and has difficulty walking and breathing.

After Mom broke her hip, our cousin Teresa Sirico reappeared (after an absence of 8-10 years). Teresa is Dad’s niece and is a real estate broker in New Haven, CT. When Teresa proposed bringing Mom to Connecticut for treatment, we agreed. We trusted Teresa as a family member and wanted the best medical care for our wife and mother. Once in Connecticut, she told us Mom couldn’t come back to Delaware. Mom had been kidnapped!

In September 2004, we received notice that Teresa had been appointed Mom’s Temporary Conservator (Connecticut’s term for guardian) by the Probate Court of Woodbridge CT. This was done “ex parte” (meaning “emergency” so no hearing was held). We weren’t notified until afterwards. Three attorneys, (the “independent” Conservator, Mom’s attorney and the Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) were appointed to advise the court on “what is best for Maydelle”. Their view of us was formed not through direct knowledge, but through (mis)information supplied by Teresa. All three were paid from Mom’s estate, @$200/hour, for reading e-mails, talking on the phone, court appearances etc.

Our family (Dad, myself and my siblings, Alice, Margaret and Paul), were all united in wanting Mom to return to New Jersey to be near us in her final years. However, our wishes were disregarded by Judge Hoyle and the other court officials. Remember, these outsiders knew what was “best” for Mom!

Judge Clifford Hoyle denied our motion disputing the Connecticut court’s jurisdiction of the case, even though Mom had never been a Connecticut resident, never voted in Connecticut, never had a Connecticut driver’s license or paid taxes in Connecticut. Judge Hoyle decided that it was in Mom’s “best interests” that she stay in Connecticut. This effectively ended my parent’s marriage of 52 years, as Ralph, her husband, lives in New Jersey and couldn’t travel to Connecticut. Dad had to obtain a mortgage (at age 80!) because he was denied access to funds in joint accounts. In a proposed division of the estate, Judge Hoyle stated that he was being ”generous” in allowing Dad 50% of the joint funds, when in fact Dad was the principal contributor to that estate.

There’s a very obvious conflict of interest here: the Probate Court officers are the ones who get to decide whether the source of their financial “gravy train” stayed in Connecticut or was allowed to leave! It was clearly in THEIR best interests financially that Mom remained in Connecticut. The Probate Court’s primary function should have been the reuniting of Maydelle with her FAMILY, and the true conservation of her person and financial estate, NOT the reallocation of her hard-earned assets to court officers’ own bank accounts! (As of Feb. 2008, Conservator Mark DellaValle has billed Mom’s estate for over $100,000!)

We appealed Judge Hoyle’s decision in Superior Court, and Judge Angela Robinson decided on September 28, 2007 that Connecticut had NO JURISDICTION over Mom. However, Mom remained in Connecticut until January 22, 2008 due to the appeals process. The conservator was allowed by Probate Judge John Keyes to hire TWO attorneys to continue to fight us, Mom’s family, with HER money!

May 2009 ~ Guardianship abuse victims recognized during Elder Abuse Prevention Month