Q&A: Does Pelletier trial verdict make you second think your actions?

Earlier this month journalist Michael Volpe asked Marty about Justina Pelletier's civil suit and if her losing changed his mind about what he did. The following is his answer. 

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Mel Levine voluntarily gave up his medical license when the North Carolina Board of Medicine was prepared to document that he performed unnecessary and inadequately-documented genital examinations on young boys. Then, he fatally shot himself in the head the day after a complaint was filed by about 40 or so of his former Boston Children's Hospital patients accusing him of molestation, sexual assault, and performing oral sex on them. He graduated from Harvard Medical School in the 1960s and immediately thereafter started working at Boston Children's Hospital. The hospital promoted him to chief of ambulatory pediatrics. Around 1985, if my recollection is accurate, he moved to UNC Chapel Hill Medical Center.

The Boston survivors who sued him claimed in their civil complaint that he saw approximately 5,000 patients at Boston Children's Hospital. In speaking to The Boston Globe, one survivor recounted that Levine also molested two of his neighbor's children and that their mother claimed Levine moved to UNC to dodge complaints. Public allegations were made for the first time that Boston Children's Hospital knew about Levine's abuse as far back as the 1960s, but failed to report him to the police.

The survivors in North Carolina---who had already gone to the state medical board there with the evidence that cost Levine his license---had not previously known that Boston Children's Hospital was aware of Levine's pedophilia or the manner in which he allegedly was shuffled to their state. Upon finding out, they sued Boston Children's Hospital.

Massachusetts has mandatory-reporting laws. Indeed, Boston Children's Hospital has cited repeatedly to these laws throughout Justina's case. Boston Children's Hospital and its practitioners, i.e. Levine's colleagues, were thus required by law to report any suspicion of child abuse. Yet, the hospital made no such report about Levine. The North Carolina survivors alleged that Boston Children's Hospital in fact conspired to do the opposite, to suppress information of Levine's sexual abuse, and that Levine was only able to obtain a North Carolina medical license and abuse them because of this conspiracy.

The lawsuit ended up before Massachusetts Superior Court Judge Merita A. Hopkins and I believe in the very same courthouse were the Pelletiers' lawsuit was recently tried. On top of what I've already told you about Hopkins, it is important to understand that the city and federal governments for which she worked extensively in the FBI and the mayor's office are incredibly close to Boston Children's Hospital. Indeed, before Justina's case, Boston Children's Hospital bragged on its website (and I'm sure this is still available on archive.org) that it received $225 million/year in federal funding---more than any other pediatric research institution. The ties to the mayor's office are perhaps even tighter. Boston Children's Hospital brings in hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue to the city, not to mention international notoriety and good will. Take away Boston Children's Hospital's reputation and the funding that goes along with it, and the city and state would have a huge void to fill.

Now, Judge Hopkins has a history of sketchy decisions to protect the city government. The Boston Herald, for example, once named her something like the worst judge in the state when she issued a gag order---remind you of the Pelletiers' case?---preventing a local TV news station from covering a scandal in the Boston Fire Department.

Melvine Levine was never criminally charged with anything.

Pedophile pediatric endocrinologist Richard Keller also graduated from Harvard Medical School and he started work at Boston Children's Hospital within months of Levine's departure. He was effectively fired from his job as the medical director of Phillips Academy Andover prior to his arrest following a string of inappropriate sexually-charged incidents. (I grew up blocks away in Andover but matriculated to Phillips Exeter Academy after both academies accepted me. I never met Keller, but numerous friends of mine were students at Andover during Keller's tenure.) After Andover chose not to renew Keller's contract, Boston Children's Hospital showed no such qualms. It even gave him an interest-free home loan, which he used to buy a house in a quiet children-adjacent neighborhood near the Academy where he no longer worked. This is the BCH-subsidized home the police later raided and where they found 60-100 DVDs of child pornography and 500 high-gloss still images of child pornography in Keller's bedroom.

It is also worth noting that The Boston Globe vigorously investigated the local archdiocese over pedophilia allegations but showed no interest in a similar "spotlight" investigation into the Harvard-affiliated Boston Children's Hospital after one pedophile pediatrician blew his brains out following a lawsuit that mentioned he saw 5,000 patients in the city and another pedophile pediatrician was caught red-handed with child pornography in the bedroom of his hospital-subsidized home.

Why is that? How many other pedophiles are there to uncover at Boston Children's Hospital? If the Boston Globe cares so much about pedophilia survivors, why no "spotlight" on pedophile pediatricians? Aren't pedophile pediatricians scandalous like pedophile priests? Isn't it in fact more scandalous when a judge with Hopkins's background throws survivors out of court without disclosing her own relevant background?

Well, bear in mind that the Catholic church was the most powerful political entity prior to the "spotlight" investigation into the pedophile priests. And guess who was left standing as the most powerful political entity afterwards. Answer: Harvard University. Now, examine the backgrounds of the people who controlled and still control The Boston Globe. I believe what you find will be quite illuminating.

Later, I'll tell you about Boston Children's Hospital Senior Attending Psychiatrist Enrico Mezzacappa and former Boston Children's Hospital Attending Psychiatrist Raymond Kam. Months before Justina was commandeered by the same Boston Children's Hospital psychiatry department, they became convinced that a young teenage patient like her was possessed and was being physically hurt by evil spirits. I kid you not. That's the department that nearly killed Justina. Kam was fired and lost his medical license, Mezzacappa was reprimanded by the board of medicine. Kam later got his license back and now works elsewhere, but Mezzacappa never left Boston Children's Hospital.

So, in further answer to Michael's question as to whether I have any regrets: I told Judge Gorton during sentencing that my only regret is that I wasn't able to do more sooner to help Justina. If she had gone home a little earlier, maybe she'd be walking today. Nobody can tell me she wouldn't be.