Medical Kidnap: It Happens to Adults Too

Bret Bohn in Seattle

by Terri LaPoint
Health Impact News

Bret Bohn’s family wants the public to know that it is not just children who are being medically kidnapped, being used as medical research lab rats, forced to take drugs, and being kept isolated from their families. They say it happened to their son, too. He was 26 years old at the time.

What began simply enough ended up in an 8 month long nightmare. Bret’s mother Lorraine Phillips told Health Impact News that it was “medical torture” and a “horrific abuse of Government corruption and power.”

From a Simple Surgery to Being Incapacitated by Drug Side Effects

Bret, a native Alaskan and an avid hunter and outdoor sportsman, had surgery to remove some nasal polyps. As a result, he lost his sense of smell, reports Police State USA. Prednisone was prescribed to help him regain his sense of smell. Neither he nor his family realized that one of the powerful steroid’s side effects was insomnia, but he certainly felt the effects of it.

After a period of a week of no sleep, Bret’s parents took him to Providence Alaska Medical Center, where two more drugs were prescribed that were supposed to help calm him and help him sleep.

Bret Bohn outdoors

The Ambien and Ativan were not exactly the magic bullet that he had hoped for. Instead, Bret started having seizures, which his family later learned is listed as one of the side effects of the drugs. He went back to Providence Medical Center, only to see his health quickly deteriorate as he was given more drugs and experienced more seizures.

Despite many tests being run, the hospital staff was unable to reach a diagnosis of Bret’s medical problems. More and more medications were allegedly prescribed, yet the original problem remained – he still couldn’t sleep. There was one stretch of 24 days with no sleep.

In his weakened state, his parents assumed power of attorney, based on a written agreement with their son that was signed in 2007. Among Bret’s impressive list of achievements, he was a member of the National Honor Society as well as an Eagle Scout. He holds two degrees from the University of Alaska Anchorage. He had the foresight to “be prepared” for any emergency in which he might become incapacitated.

Bret Bohn power of attorney doc

Bret Becomes a Medical Prisoner, Unable to Escape

At one point, Bret became frustrated with all the medical treatments, and decided, as an adult, to leave the hospital. He unplugged from the machines, and removed his IV and catheter. His “escape attempt” was reported to the courts.

His parents began to question the course of medical treatment and requested that their son be weaned off of the medications. For a brief period, their request was honored, and Bret got some much-needed sleep, as reported previously by Health Impact NewsIt was short-lived. His parents requested a transfer to another facility for a second opinion. At this time, there was still no diagnosis for his deteriorating health.

It was not long after that, on October 23, 2013, that Providence Medical Center told Bet’s parents that they were restricting their visits with their son, ignoring Bret’s signed power of attorney to his parents.

As the visits with his family decreased, his medications were increasing. When Bret opposed some of the medications, including some that were psychotropic, he was viewed as “disgruntled” and “combative,” sure signs of mental illness. He was confined to the psych ward.

On November 5, 2013, Adult Protective Services filed for emergency guardianship over Bret, accusing his parents of not having his best interests in mind. Judge Erin Marston granted the motion on November 15, refusing to allow any family members to assume the role of his guardian. His previous escape attempt and his family’s attempt to wean him off the medications and find the actual cause of his symptoms were all seen as validation for the state to hold him against his will and remove his basic human rights, according to the family.

Heavily Drugged, and Treated Like a Criminal in State Custody

For a time, visitation was permitted by the state, but there were a number of conditions imposed, though no crime had been committed. According to a document on the Free Bret Bohn Facebook page, these restrictions included:

  • No cell phones, no computers, no working phone in Bret’s room
  • Only Chaplains from Providence hospital permitted. Bret could not have any visitation from his own pastor or ministers
  • No outside sources of Lawyers
  • No letters, cards, balloons, or flowers
  • No Privacy. Visitation supervised
  • Visitors not permitted to whisper, must speak clearly at all times
  • Family forbidden to tell Bret that he was coming home some day
  • At one point his family was told that only one hug was permitted, only upon arrival
  • No body contact, unless approved by Providence
  • Visits expected to be calm, social, and lighthearted in nature
  • Any stress inducing behaviors, whether purposeful or unintentional, would result in an end to the visit
  • Visits limited to one hour, then reduced to 30 minutes, then eliminated altogether
  • Security to accompany visitors to and from the visitation area

The family reports that Bret was heavily medicated during all visits, ranging from the minimum of extremely dilated pupils to being medicated at times “to the point of inability to communicate freely.” His mother reports that he eventually was on at least 22 different drugs, including Resperidone and Haloperiodol, which are powerful anti-psychotic drugs.

Bret Bohn heavily drugged

After Christmas 2013, his family and friends were no longer permitted to visit at all. Though he was an adult, Bret was completely at the mercy of guardians he never agreed to. His 27th birthday came and went on January 12, with no visits from any loved ones permitted according to his family.

Forced Medical Research and Attempt to Escape

Because he was now a ward of the state, he could legally be entered into drug trials and medical research without his knowledge or consent. There was finally a diagnosis, Autoimmune Encephalitis. His family was told that he had irreversible brain damage, and needed treatment in Seattle. He was court-ordered to receive ECT – electroconvulsive therapy, or shock therapy to his brain, against his will.

In late March, Bret was transferred to Harborview Medical Center, a University of Washington facility, in Seattle. There, his parents report, psychiatrists wanted to transfer him to the psych ward. His parents were allowed to visit, and what they found was very disturbing. In an email to Health Impact News, his mother Lorraine describes the horrific situation:

“Bret was crying tears (no voice), spitting out their medications, and begging for his life.”

According to Lorraine, Bret had had enough, and he decided to leave. She and Bret walked out of the hospital in what they hoped was an escape to freedom, and answers.

Three days later the family were seeking a second opinion, when his mother was arrested, charged with kidnapping, and locked up in the King County Jail. Bret was forced back into the hospital.

Defying Alaskan Authorities to Gain Freedom

Lorraine was released without bail the next day, and a new team of doctors were assigned to Bret’s case. They chose not to follow the directions of the Providence hospital, instead doing their own evaluation. That was the beginning of the end of Bret Bohn’s nightmare.

On May 9, Bret was released to the care of his aunt and uncle in Boise. Despite the Alaska Office of Public Advocacy’s insistence that they were in control of Bret, and that he needed to be transferred to a nursing home, Bret himself phoned the Alaska courts on the very day of his discharge from Harborview, requesting Termination of Guardianship.

Bret Bohn with his mom in Seattle

He began weaning off of all the medications that he had been forced to take, and his family and friends report that Bret is finally back to himself again. Despite adamant insistence by the Alaskan authorities, their suspicions that the drugs were actually causing the very problems that the hospitals needed to treat were confirmed.

On June 17, 2014, the nightmare ended and Bret’s freedom was returned as he received Termination of Guardianship.

Proving Doctors Wrong

Today, Bret Bohr’s life defies any accusation that he would be permanently incapacitated. The system that took his health and his freedom has been demonstrated to be wrong, as he is back to work in Alaska as a Bear Guard and Big Game Guide, living his life and loving his family.

According to the family’s Facebook page, Bret wants the public to know the facts of his story “so this kind of inhumane treatment is not ordered by law to others,” and “so this will not happen again!” They have pointed out that it was public advocacy and the tireless efforts of family, friends, compassionate lawyers, and supporters that made the difference in freeing Bret.

Bret Bohn advocates

There are many others whose voices have not yet been heard, yet they face the same injustice. Many still believe this kind of thing “couldn’t happen in America.”

But it can, and it does. Bret’s family hope that their story can help expose the injustice and can help others who are being medically kidnapped by the government agencies, the very ones who insist they are working for the “best interest of the child, or the patient.”

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DoCS attacking families in Queensland – The Turmoil Goes On and on and on and never stops with DoCS Queensland

Australian-Institute-of-Family-Studies-Do-some-proper-research-on-child-protection-in-Australia1DoCS attacking families in Queensland
The Turmoil Goes On and on and on and never stops with DoCS Queensland 

I was 19 when I had my first son. I had no idea on how to raise a child. I had no support nothing. I was with someone who abused me daily and I stayed thinking it was the right thing to do. Then I fell pregnant with my second son while still in the same relationship. I never received any help and was still getting abuse, until he tried to kill me. I took my son and I finally left.

I met someone new and within a few months I fell pregnant again.

I was left standing on my own and I moved back home after I had my baby girl thinking it was the best thing to do. I was wrong, it wasn't. In the mix of all this, my ex took my boys while he was on drugs, he drinks and smokes.

For 5 months, I missed their lives cause of the court system. Not just that.

I called DoCS on my ex cause he keep my babies lock up in a house and they end up with school sores. DoCS told me I had no right as a Mum.

Then I did get them back and move to my mums.

In September 2013, I got with my new man, he is so good to me and my kids. He has raise my baby girl and my two boys as his own. The day before Christmas my son broke his leg by playing around.

DoCS got called on me. They come out and could find anything and closed the case. I keep ring them every time my kids hurt themselves and got told by DoCS to stop calling other wise I was going to be charge for harassment.

Four weeks later my son had his cast off and we move in to a new house. He was playing with some other kids riding bikes and re-broke his leg by accident. At the same time my oldest boy got a boil on his tummy.

The boil left a hole in is tummy, so I took him up to the hospital and he got an infection from the hospital. The hospital blamed me for it. My kids got taken away again.

I am fighting for them back we already have done a parenting program and doing counseling and this was done before they ask us to.

I'm now pregnant with my 4th child and got told from DoCS, if I went to every appointment and look after myself I would get to keep him but now they told us he is going into care without giving us a chance.

I don't smoke or do drugs or even drink nor does my current partner.

All DoCS have done is lie to us and won't help in anyway. We ring them all the time to get stuff done. As a result of all the stress I am under, I have been admitted to hospital


By Anonymous in Queensland, as told to Luke's Army

A version of this column originally appeared in:

Foster youth was Tased five times at Good Samaritan Hospital

A city police officer used his Taser five times to subdue a heavily medicated 19-year-old man who was fighting staff at Good Samaritan Hospital and later died, according to his family's attorney and an account from a law enforcement source.

State social services officials identified the teen Monday as George V. King, a Charles County foster youth living in a Baltimore residential facility. King was in a coma for a week after the altercation, then died May 14.

Police disclosed the incident a day later, saying they had opened a criminal and administrative investigation. Officials say they have not determined what role, if any, the officers' actions played in King's death.

The teen's mother appeared Monday with her attorney, Granville Templeton III, at a rally outside Good Samaritan. Georgette King said her son had been hospitalized overnight for a reaction to medication after a dental procedure. The fight took place the day after hospital staff tried to administer a medical procedure, she said.

Georgette King faulted hospital officials and said police "brutalized" her son.

"He's my only child that God has given me," she said. "Police are supposed to protect and serve, and this is not protect and serve."

Lt. Eric Kowalczyk, a police spokesman, said that while police "clearly had an interaction" with King, investigators were looking at "everything that transpired and trying to put together all of the pieces to see what happened here." He said the autopsy was pending, and the officer who used the Taser remains on duty.

The death comes as city police are moving — at a cost of $1.5 million — to equip the entire force with the electronic stun devices, which proponents credit with saving lives because officers can avoid using lethal firearms.

Critics have pointed to deaths associated with the electronic shock from the devices, and some say officers are too quick to reach for them.

City Councilman Robert Curran attended a meeting Monday between hospital executives, police and members of the faith-based community to discuss the hospital's protocols. He said police couldn't discuss specifics due to the ongoing case.

But standing with King's mother, the Rev. Cortly "C.D." Witherspoon Sr., a Baltimore activist who organized the Monday rally, said police should release more information about what happened.

"There are a lot of assumptions taking place because the Baltimore Police Department has created an environment where there are a lot of unanswered questions," Witherspoon said.

A hospital spokeswoman said she could not comment, citing health privacy laws.

According to an account provided by a law enforcement source, the officers, Thomas Hodas and James Wynne, saw eight to 10 staff members trying to hold down King, who is listed in police records as 5-foot-9 and about 190 pounds.


A version of this column originally appeared in:

CPS Michigan Starved 10YO Disabled Boy to Death After Mom Sought State’s Help, Johnny’s Story

Disabled 10 YO Boy Starved 10YO Disabled Boy to Death by CPS After Mother Asked for Help; Financial Incentives Encourage States to Kidnap and Withhold Children, Johnny's Story Pt 1/2 April 2010, ABC7 Detroit Investigation into Michigans tragically-flawed foster care system. The heartbreaking story of a 10-year-old boy who starved to death while a facility banked cash to care for him. The state is quick to take kids from parents and put them in foster care, especially poor parents. The state makes it very hard to get them back. Experts say the state has a financial incentive to keep kids away from their families.

Johnnys mother, Elena Andron, dedicated her life to caring for her wheelchair-bound son. All she wanted was a little help. The states answer was to put him in a foster care facility. One year later, Johnny starved to death. Johnny, who was nine at the time, could not walk, talk or feed himself. He had cerebral palsy and epilepsy. When she lost her factory job she turned to the Michigan Department of Human Services, a decision she will regret for the rest of her life. The foster care facility where the state sent Johnny failed to feed him enough food. Andron says she watched her son waste away as she begged for help.

Why? Some say its because the state gets a lot of cash for foster kids. Termination of parent rights is very high in Michigan. But its also very high nationwide and it happened because of some laws that were passed by the federal government and encouraged states to terminate parental rights more often than they used to and promise to send them money if they would terminate rights and have the children adopted.

According to the states own figures, the federal government gave Michigan about $110 million last year for foster care. Thats compared to the $26 million in programs that help parents keep their kids. Foster facilities also have an incentive to keep kids away from their parents. In Androns case, the foster home got about $12,000 a month from the state for Johnny. "Youre getting paid, youre getting a lot of money," says attorney Arnold Reed, who represents Andron in a lawsuit against the foster care facility and several other state-contracted groups. Reed says the foster facility profited big time off of Johnny. "There is no shortage of money, plus youre getting a stipend, youre getting a clothes stipend and youre getting a stipend for food," says Reed. But not enough of that food made it to Johnny. "He started deteriorating so quick I could not believe my eyes," says Andron. "He had gotten so weak to where he was just shaking constantly."

She agreed to make her son a temporary ward of the state. She was supposed to bring him home after a year - once she got back on track financially.

When she complained about Johnny losing weight, she says the state turned on her. "They didnt care. None of my complaints mattered," says Andron. The Department of Human Services did not like Androns complaints or her efforts to get her son back. They took her to court and asked that she not be allowed to see Johnny.

Andron says the first time she met her court-appointed lawyer was that day in court. She says the lawyer didnt put up much of a fight. The judge sided with the state.

The next time Andron heard about Johnny he was dead. Johnny weighed 120 pounds when he went into foster care, she says. An autopsy report shows he was only 48 pounds when he died of malnutrition.

Were spending a ton of money for putting these kids in foster care," says Vivek Sankaran, an assistant professor at the Child Advocacy Law Clinic at the University of Michigan Law School. "But for these children we are irreparably scaring them by damaging the bonds that they form with their families."

Sankaran says only about nine percent of the 16,000 kids in foster care were sexually or physically abused. The majority were taken from their parents because of poverty-related neglect. "Removal is too often thought of as the first option for protecting children and child welfare rather than working with families, engaging with them, providing them services in the home," says Sankaran. His organization, Detroit Center for Family Advocacy, helps parents on the front end. "We need to create a culture where parents are willing to say, 'I need help'" says Sankaran. That is exactly what Andron tried to do, but with heartbreaking results. "I gave them my healthy child and to get him back in a casket. Hed still be a live today if he was home with me," says Andron.

Perpetrators of Maltreatment (04' now much worse) # Cases per 100,000 Children in U.S. from NCCAN. Physical Abuse CPS 160, Parents 59; Sexual Abuse CPS 112, Parents 13; Neglect CPS 410, Parents 241; Medical Neglect CPS 14, Parents 12; Fatalities CPS 6,4, Parents 1,5.

Should CPS seize children because their mother is ill?

(Photo: Nick Oza)

(Photo: Nick Oza)

It's now been 421 days since Jessyca and Bradon Peterson lost their three children. Fourteen months since Child Protective Services decided the kids were better off with strangers than with their parents or grandparents.

Two Easters and a Christmas have been missed, and birthdays have passed – a lifetime in a child's eyes.

Now, finally, the Petersons are getting their day in court, that long-awaited chance to counter CPS's claims that they're unfit to care for their children.

The Petersons' attorney, DeeAn Gillespie Strub, says she's appalled at what the Petersons have endured at the hands of CPS, but not surprised.

"They made a bad call and this is CPS's m.o.," said Strub, who has frequently tangled with the agency. "They cannot say 'whoops'. Why? Because they hold all the power and the culture of CPS is 'We are right. We are always right'."

The problem, of course, is that sometimes the state's most woeful agency is wrong and when that happens children suffer.

Officials at CPS and its replacement, Child Safety and Family Services, have declined to comment, citing privacy laws. CPS records lay out the agency's concern that Jessyca was too ill to care for her 7-year-old son and twin 2-year-old daughters, who have developmental delays.

What they don't explain is why the best option was to rip the children away from their parents.

The Petersons' ordeal began on March 20, 2013, after paramedics were called to their Chandler house. Jessyca, home alone with the children, was blacking out and knew she needed help. Knowing that paramedics were on their way, she says she put the twins in their room, closing the gate on the doorway.

She crashed after paramedics arrived and records show they treated her for a drug overdose. But her doctor's notes indicate that Jessyca was hypoglycemic, having not eaten all day. The drugs in her system had been prescribed to treat her fibromyalgia.

CPS was called after paramedics expressed concern that the house was "filthy", the girls were confined and a large number of painkillers were observed. It was the second time CPS had been called to check on the children. Two months earlier, CPS investigated but found no reason to get involved.

This time, however, CPS deemed the children "in immediate danger" due to Jessyca's illness and took them away, splitting them into two foster homes. A judge granted the state temporary custody after CPS reported that the girls were "caged" by a mother who couldn't provide for their basic needs and that there were "no identified family members willing or able to care for the children."

Never mind the parents' explanation to CPS that the gate was used sparingly, to keep the girls safe. Or the grandfather's plea that the children be placed with him.

Never mind the letter from Jessyca's doctor, explaining that her medication is monitored and that she is "fully capable of taking care of her children."

Jessyca and Bradon told me last fall that they did everything CPS asked to get their children back. They took parenting classes and underwent psychiatric evaluations with a CPS-selected psychologist.

Read more at: Should CPS seize children because their mother is ill?:


A version of this column originally appeared in: