Doctor Calls Out Paxil (Seroxat) And Its Damage To Teens..


Years ago, Big Pharma company SmithKline Beecham (now part of GlaxoSmithKline) published a prominent study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry that concluded the popular antidepressant medication, Paxil, was safe and effective for teenagers.

But in September 2015, the British Medical Journal posted a re-analysis of the original data — and concluded that the opposite is true.

There have been many reports of young people taking or withdrawing from antidepressants, especially Paxil, and committing violent acts, even suicide.

The original study compared the responses of adolescents taking Paxil or a placebo to a group taking an older antidepressant called imipramine. The Paxil group did not perform better than the other groups for depression.

After the study was published, SmithKline Beecham submitted the trial to the FDA for approval in treating adolescents.

Of course, the FDA approved their application and Big Pharma ramped up their marketing of Paxil for teenagers.

Guess what happened next? Prescriptions of antidepressants to our youth increased by 36 percent from 2002 to 2003.

The 2015 article that reanalyzed the data reported that Paxil has no clear effectiveness, and there was mislabeling of serious side effects.

Antidepressant drugs are a disaster. They barely perform better than a placebo. Exercise outperforms antidepressants in nearly every study that compares the two.

I don’t think these drugs need to be pulled from the market completely, but they should not be as widely prescribed.

There are many natural therapies that can combat depression. The best therapy starts with the basics: Drink an adequate amount of water and eat a healthy diet.

Hello To The World Health Organization (WHO)…


I get views regularly from organizations as diverse as the WHO (World Health Organization) and the MHRA, to the US government and the European Medicines Authority. It’s interesting that the WHO were viewing today, because it was back in 2002, that the WHO reported that Paroxetine (Seroxat/Paxil) topped the list of withdrawal symptoms for SSRI drugs.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/1382551.stm

 

“Dr Healy told BBC News Online, of the 100m people world-wide who were on Seroxat, one in 1,000 could have a suicidal reaction.”

Withdrawal problems

A World Health Organization report which ranked antidepressants in order of withdrawal problems found Seroxat was the hardest to come off.

 

Glaxo Looks To Bar FDA, Plea Evidence From Paxil Trial


Interesting article on the Paxil (seroxat) birth defect trials that GSK is trying to quash at the moment, particularly these parts-

“…The drugmaker also railed against evidence that lab notebooks from 1979 animal studies were destroyed in 1993, saying the claim “grossly distorts the regulatory practices in place at the time” and is “a manufactured controversy” likely to make jurors assume malfeasance….”

” GSK asked the judge to bar evidence about a 2012 plea agreement and three civil settlements; it pled guilty to one misdemeanor count of drug misbranding. This guilty plea carried no implication of fraud with it, the company said. And the misbranding had to do with Paxil’s use for patients under 18.”..


GSK’s attorneys are lower than gutter slime..

An Amoeba would have more depth of character …

https://www.law360.com/trials/articles/884297/glaxo-looks-to-bar-fda-claims-guilty-plea-from-paxil-trial

Glaxo Looks To Bar FDA, Plea Evidence From Paxil Trial

Law360, New York (January 24, 2017, 4:49 PM EST) — Jurors in an upcoming trial over birth defects allegedly caused by the antidepressant Paxil must not be told about drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline‘s alleged campaign to defraud the FDA, about destruction of study data or about its 2012 guilty plea on misbranding charges, the company insisted Tuesday.

The company filed a slew of motions seeking to box out evidence it said is irrelevant to mother Kathryn Kiker’s claims that taking the drug while pregnant caused her child’s ventricular septal defect, a serious heart problem. The trial is set for Feb. 21 in the Columbus, Ohio, courtroom of U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus.

“GSK anticipates that plaintiffs will argue at trial that GSK committed ‘fraud on the FDA’ by not cooperating fully with, and by withholding information from, the FDA regarding adverse events, animal studies and/or clinical trials  … so that the FDA did not undertake regulatory action with regard to Paxil,” the company said. But the claims “are incorrect, irrelevant and inadmissible,” it said. “Furthermore, the U.S. Supreme Court has held that FDA — not a private plaintiff — has exclusive authority to police disclosures made to [the] FDA.”

The drugmaker also railed against evidence that lab notebooks from 1979 animal studies were destroyed in 1993, saying the claim “grossly distorts the regulatory practices in place at the time” and is “a manufactured controversy” likely to make jurors assume malfeasance.

And in another motion, GSK asked the judge to bar evidence about a 2012 plea agreement and three civil settlements; it pled guilty to one misdemeanor count of drug misbranding. This guilty plea carried no implication of fraud with it, the company said. And the misbranding had to do with Paxil’s use for patients under 18.

Even as information about character, the plea deal is not usable, the company said.

“Evidence regarding felonies and any crime whose elements require proof of a dishonest act or false statement may be admissible for impeachment. GSK’s plea to no-intent, strict-liability misdemeanors under the FDCA is inadmissible for impeachment purposes because it does not fall within either category,” it said.

And it requested oral argument on another motion seeking to bar evidence about other lawsuits, investigations or media reports.

In October 2015, an Ohio federal judge ruled that GSK must face the suit because the mother successfully pled fraud.

U.S. District Judge Edmund Sargus denied GlaxoSmithKline LLC’s motion for judgment on the pleadings, rejecting its argument that Kiker’s claims accrued in September 2005, when the company told the medical community about Paxil’s links to birth defects, and are thus abrogated by the Ohio Product Liability Act, which was amended in 2005 and curtailed common-law liability claims in the state.

But the judge sided with Kiker’s argument that her claims accrued when her child, referred to as C.S., was born in 2001.

The judge said that a provision in the 2005 Tort Reform Act includes a discovery rule so that a bodily injury claim may be extended to a date when it was reasonable for the injured party to have discovered her injury was related to a product. The judge also found that the fraud allegations in Kiker’s proposed amended complaint were sufficiently particular, and granted her leave to file the amended complaint.

“At the time Paxil was prescribed to Ms. Kiker, GSK knew … that Paxil was associated with a significant increased risk of cardiac birth defects in babies,” Kiker said. “Other studies showed that increased levels of serotonin, the primary human substance affected by Paxil, had profound effects on the prenatal cardiac development of study animals.”

Despite knowing these risks, she said, GSK suggested Paxil was safer than other available selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, and misled the medical community as to its safety. Kiker said GSK did not begin to inform doctors of the risks until September 2005, when third-party research showing the association was released.

The entire time the drug has been on the U.S. market, federal regulations have required stronger warnings in the presence of evidence of a birth-defect link, Kiker said. These FDA regulations specifically state that the link need not be proven and that the company can issue the warning without agency approval.

Kiker is represented by Benjamin Anderson of Anderson Law Offices LLC and Bryan Aylstock, James Barger, Bobby Bradford, Roger Cameron and R. Jason Richards of Aylstock Witkin Kreis & Overholtz.

GSK is represented by Andrew Bayman, Halli Cohn and Meredith Redwine of King & Spalding LLP and William Darrell Kloss Jr., Adam Rusnak and Jessica Goldman of Vorys Sater Seymour & Pease LLP.

The case is Kiker v. Smithkline Beecham Corp., case number 2:14-cv-02164, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.

–Additional reporting by Emily Field. Editing by Philip Shea.

Stat: New rule on clinical trial reporting doesn’t go far enough


The clinical trial industry, which I work in, is in crisis.

Roughly half of clinical trials go unreported. Industry-sponsored trials are four times more likely to produce positive results than non-industry trials. And even when trials are reported, the investigators usually fail to share their study results: nearly 90 percent of trials on ClinicalTrials.gov lack results.

Failure to report clinical trial results puts patients in danger. Here’s one example of that: GlaxoSmithKline, the maker of the antidepressant Paxil, recently paid $3 billion for failing to disclose trial data showing that Paxil was not only no more effective than placebo but was also linked to increased suicide attempts among teenagers. The effectiveness of statins, the Tamiflu anti-flu medicine, antipsychotics, and other drugs have come under question due to improperly reported data. Without complete disclosure of trial results, physicians can’t make informed decisions for their patients.

A recently passed final rule from the Department of Health and Human Services now requires that all NIH-sponsored clinical trials be reported on ClinicalTrials.gov. A complementary policy from the National Institutes of Health covers registering and submitting summary results information to ClinicalTrials.gov for all NIH-funded trials, including those not covered by the final rule.

Unreported trials are subject to daily fines of $11,833. Researchers have 90 days after the rule is enacted on January 18, 2017 to comply with it. Excellent summaries of the rule have been published by the NIH and in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The final rule should help address some of the troubling trends in the clinical trial industry. It clears up ambiguous reporting requirements and explicitly requires investigators to submit clinical trial results, adverse events, and statistical methods. These are steps in the right direction that could limit the unscientific practices plaguing the trial industry.

But the final rule doesn’t go far enough, mainly because FDA lacks the staff and the political will to adequately enforce it. As STAT reported in December 2015, the FDA had never levied a single fine for clinical trial reporting violations. Representatives from the FDA cite legal complexities and lack of employees, yet critics have also pointed out the FDA is effectively on the pharmaceutical industry’s payroll. Under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act, the FDA supplements its budget by charging pharmaceutical companies drug application fees that totaled $855 million in fiscal year 2015.

The current FDA commissioner, Dr. Robert Califf, has said that the FDA will not be adding staff to enforce the final rule. That’s a mistake. How else can we expect the rule to be enforced? I work in a research group that conducts more than a dozen clinical trials and know firsthand that researchers don’t have the impetus to report their trials unless there are strong incentives to do so — like enforcement and the threat of fines.

In a perfect world, the FDA would receive more funding to hire employees so it could independently enforce this policy. In the meantime, researchers can check the reporting practices of their own institutions or sign a petition to support the Alltrials campaign. Another project called OpenTrials, a collaboration between Open Knowledge International and the University of Oxford Data Lab, aims to “locate, match, and share all publicly accessible data and documents, on all trials conducted, on all medicines and other treatments, globally.” It is seeking volunteers to contribute clinical trial data.

I know from personal experience that clinical trial reporting can be tedious and seemingly unrewarding work. But the transparent exchange of scientific data is integral to evidence-based medicine and public health. While the new final rule is a step in the right direction, the public and the research community also need to support efforts like AllTrials and OpenTrials.

Chris Cai is a clinical research coordinator at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

Christmas Cheer GSK Style! : Just The Usual Sociopathic Skullduggery and Devious Under-handedness, From The Felons Glaxo, And Their Dark Hearted Lawyers..


http://fiddaman.blogspot.ie/2016/12/glaxo-has-dolins-bells-ringing.html

From Fiddaman Blog:

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Glaxo Has Dolin’s Bells Ringing

GlaxoSmithKline – The company that keeps on giving.

Glaxo have been dealth yet another blow in the Paxil suicide case filed by Wendy Dolin over 5 years ago.

To date Glaxo have made endless requests that have been denied by the Judge, they have tried to get expert witnesses barred from giving evidence and even wanted to hold their own kangaroo court for one of Dolin’s witnesses, David Healy – once again they were denied.

Their latest attempt is, or was, a wonderful attempt at skullduggery. It defies belief that they would try to even go down this particular route but, I guess, they have exhausted every possible line of trickery and manipulation so one final attempt before trial commences shouldn’t really come as a surprise to those who know exactly how Glaxo and their highly paid law team, King & Spalding, like to operate.

Some time ago Glaxo were informed by the Judge that they should not try to blind the jury in this case with irrelevant documents. The jury just need to know the facts and endless documents would just confuse them. So, what did Glaxo do on the back of this request from the Judge? Well, they submitted a 170 ­page exhibit list with roughly 1,500 proposed defense trial exhibits – so, no attempt at burying the jury in paper, right? (See Judge Backs Widow’s Objection To GSK Trial Documents)

The documents are hundreds of pages long and, according to Dolin, if printed out would fill more than 20 bankers’boxes.

Wendy Dolin, through her law team, Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman PC, objected to the mountain of paperwork and the Judge, U.S. District Judge William T. Hart, has sustained her objections, leaving Glaxo and  King & Spalding with their tails between their legs and having to spend Christmas with the knowledge that they cannot dupe the Judge or jury in this case.

Better luck next time folks (I’m sure there will be another Paxil related suicide case to defend)

Furthermore, GSK objected to evidence being presented to the jury by Dolin, namely, correspondence between Glaxo and the FDA. The Judge denied them this and many other objections they had filed regarding Dolin’s evidence to be presented – (Boo-hoo)

The antics of Glaxo and their crispy white shirts has prompted yet another ditty from  yours truly. I hope Glaxo and King & Spalding enjoy this latest offering.



DOLIN’S JINGLE BELLS
The Judge has dealt a blow
On the mighty GSK
He has told them ‘No’
You cannot have your way.
He has barred their lists
Not let them have their way
The jury in the Paxil case
Who they’ve tried to lead astray
Oh, Dolin bells, Glaxo smells,
the Judge has blown away
Glaxo’s endless motions,
exhibit lists, horseplay.
Oh, Dolin bells, Glaxo smells,
they’ve been denied again
Let’s all laugh at their expense
and pull their lawyers chain.
Paxil is not safe
It makes you lose your mind
Suicide and birth defects
For which they have been fined.
They’ve settled out of court
With Paxil addicts too
They claim its safe and effective
But we all know that’s untrue.
Oh, Dolin bells, Glaxo smells,
the Judge has blown away
Glaxo’s endless motions,
exhibit lists, horseplay.
Oh, Dolin bells, Glaxo smells,
they’ve been denied again
Let’s all laugh at their expense
and pull their lawyers chain.
Now Dolin awaits her day
That she will have in court
Where documents presented
Will show they failed to report
the Paxil suicide link,
which they kept at bay
To me, at least, they’ve lost this case
So, let’s jingle all the way.
Oh, Jingle bells, Glaxo smells,
the Judge has blown away
Glaxo’s endless motions,
exhibit lists, horseplay.
Oh, Jingle bells, Glaxo smells,
they’ve been denied again
Let’s all laugh at their expense
and pull their lawyers chain.
Lyrics by Dee Nide and the Motions.

 

GSK Can’t Ax Out-Of-Staters From Ill. Paxil (Seroxat) Suit, Court Says


GSK Can’t Ax Out-Of-Staters From Ill. Paxil Suit, Court Says

http://www.law360.com/articles/833842/gsk-can-t-ax-out-of-staters-from-ill-paxil-suit-court-says

Law360, Boston (August 29, 2016, 5:06 PM EDT) — GlaxoSmithKline LLC had enough purposeful contacts with Illinois during clinical trials for the antidepressant Paxil for it to face claims from out-of-state residents that the company failed to warn that the drug could cause serious birth defects, a state appeals court ruled Friday.

The First District Appellate Court of Illinois, Fifth Division, ruled that the standard for a showing that a defendant’s conduct was “arising from” its contacts with the state was “lenient and flexible,” giving the state courts jurisdiction over the pharmaceutical giant. The decision in an interlocutory appeal upholds the trial court’s denial of GSK’s dismissal bid.

“In light of the lenient and flexible ‘arising from’ and ‘related to’ standard, plaintiffs meet the low threshold of a prima facie showing that their claims arose from defendant GSK’s Paxil trials in Illinois,” the appeals court said.

In the suit, eight minors from six states — Illinois, Florida, Colorado, Virginia, Michigan and Wisconsin — said that they suffered catastrophic birth defects because their mothers were taking GSK’s Paxil. The label failed to warn them of serious birth defects that the drug could cause, the plaintiffs said, and that was the result of inadequate clinical trials, 18 to 21 of which occurred in Illinois via 17 Illinois doctors. That meant that the claims arose directly out of or were related to GSK’s purposeful contacts with Illinois, the plaintiffs argued.

GSK argued that Illinois did not have jurisdiction over the out-of-state plaintiffs.

“GSK is disappointed by the court’s decision and is considering its options,” the company said in an emailed statement Tuesday.

Tor Hoerman, whose firm represented the plaintiffs, said in an emailed statement: “This decision is entirely in line with existing precedent of the Illinois Supreme Court and Appellate Court. … Drug makers who conduct inadequate or manipulated clinical trials in Illinois should not be surprised that they can be sued in Illinois for that conduct.”

In trying to have the suit dismissed as to the out-of-state plaintiffs, GSK said that its clinical trials occurred in 44 states and foreign countries, too attenuated for personal jurisdiction in one state where it’s not headquartered. Its alleged acts or omissions in Illinois were not the “but for” cause — in other words, GSK said, the plaintiffs couldn’t show that the harm would not have occurred but for what GSK did in Illinois.

In addition, GSK argued, the plaintiffs weren’t study subjects there, and the out-of-state plaintiffs didn’t take Paxil or suffer injuries in Illinois.

The children and their mothers argued that GSK had meaningful contacts with Illinois through its clinical trials of Paxil, during which they said it failed to track 18 pregnancies, one of which resulted in a heart defect. According to Friday’s decision, GSK employs 16,323 people in the U.S., including 217 who reside in Illinois, and from 2000 to 2006, GSK had between 79 and 121 employees marketing Paxil in Illinois.

They did not have to prove that any act was committed in Illinois, but just make a prima facie showing, the defendants said.

In a ruling Friday, the appeals court sided with the plaintiffs.

“The quality of defendant GSK’s relationship with Illinois can hardly be characterized as random, attenuated or the like; the contacts with Illinois, over the course of two decades, were purposeful and directed,” the appeals court ruled.

The plaintiffs, and the judges, used some of GSK’s own statements to show that the case could continue. In a declaration, GSK said that the principal Paxil investigators had “little or no input into or control over the study design protocol or analysis of the aggregate data collected from all study sites.”

“As plaintiffs argue, the word ‘little’ invites the inference that the physicians had some degree of input into, and control over, the clinical trials, or else the word would have been omitted,” the appeals court said. Absent further guidance in the record, we ‘resolve in favor of the plaintiff any conflicts in the pleadings and affidavits.’”

Judges Robert E. Gordon, Bertina E. Lampkin and Eileen O’Neill Burke sat on the panel for the First District.

GlaxoSmithKline is represented by Dentons.

The plaintiffs are represented by Ken Brennan of TorHoerman Law LLC.

The case is M.M., a minor, et al. v. GlaxoSmithKline LLC et al., case number 1-15-1909, in the Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, Fifth Division.

–Editing by Mark Lebetkin.

Update: This story has been updated to include a comment from GSK.

Seroxat/Paxil and Violence…


I developed suicidal/aggressive/ tendencies when I was on Seroxat (Paxil) and I also became severely agitated from akathisa (another horrible Seroxat side effect)- and there have been multitudes of similar experiences of Seroxat horror stories documented for over two decades now. Seroxat can literally push you over the edge, this drug should have been banned a long time ago, or at the very least severely restricted for new users… but GSK can’t let anything get in the way of their profit margins can they? For them profit is the bottom line. Ethics and human life are merely inconveniences…

This recently uploaded video of David Carmichael’s experience of Paxil should serve as a warning of just how dangerous drugs like Seroxat can be.

Courtney Dunkin… Prescribed Paxil (Seroxat/Aropax/Paroxetine) When She Was 14…


Interesting case of another Paxil (Seroxat) induced homicide. How many vulnerable teens (and young people) were prescribed Paxil and then subsequently went on to commit Paxil induced crimes, and how many lost their lives?

Does GSK keep track?…


https://ssristories.org/15-year-old-girl-kills-grandmother-13-years-ago-life-sentence/

Ask TX Governor to pardon Courtney Dunkin, 15 y.o. convicted as adult while taking Paxil.

Courtney Dunkin was a mere 15 years old when she fatally shot her adopted mother, Betty Dunkin, while she was under the influence, and suffering from involuntary intoxication, due to the harmful anti-depressant Paxil (Paroxetine).  She was tried as an adult and wrongfully sentenced, due to lack of evidence, to Life in prison in the TX. Dept. of Criminal Justice.

It wouldn’t be until 2003 when the evidence she needed to prove her innocence would arise.  Courtney had been hospitalized in 1994 for depression and prescribed the drug Paxil, which had unknown side effects at that time.  A later study conducted by the FDA in 2003 proved that Paxil must NEVER be prescribed to children under the age of 18, as it was proven to increase the risk of suicidal ideation and behavior in children, as well as many other dangerous/harmful side-effects. This drug, which was supposed to save Courtney’s life as it helped her past fragile teenage years, became the main cause of destroying her life.  By 2003 it would be far too late to bring this evidence to the Court in Courtney’s defense.

After the FDA declared their study about the medicine which would prove that Courtney was not responsible for her own actions nor in a lucid state of mind, she faced another harsh twist in the story of her life: her appeals had been exhausted and only the trial officials (Judge, Sherriff, District Attorney, and State Governor) can grant her relief regarding this new evidence.

Courtney was a typical teenager who was living in a state of emotional disturbance because of a troubled family life.  He father was an alcoholic and having been abandoned by her mother, she was adopted by her paternal grandparents, John and Betty Dunkin, at the age of 5.  Then shortly afterwards, at the age of 11, she suffered the loss of her grandfather – the only father she had ever known – to cancer, and her life shattered.

In a downward spiral of suicidal despair, she shot her mother, and then sought to run away and commit suicide.  Never once did she realize that the very medication she was taking is what caused those destructive thoughts.

Upon her arrest she was lost and confused with no guardian, no parental guidance, nor any knowledge of her rights or the juvenile legal system.  Police and investigators used this naiveté to their advantage despite Courtney’s pleas that she didn’t know why she had done what she did and that she was obviously mentally disturbed and suicidal.  Instead they painted a picture of her as a remorseless, cold-hearted monster and created a motive that they knew would garner a conviction.  Instead of helping a mentally ill little girl, they only served to hurt her further.

Heartbroken and remorseful for her actions as a child and, 20 yrs. later, armed with the knowledge of the harmful side-effects of the medication she was taking, Courtney has managed to make sense of how such a horrible tragedy could occur.  Courtney doesn’t want the dangerous effects of this drug to go un-noticed or for any other children to be subjected to the awful experiences she has.

Courtney’s mental state and the influence of this poisonous drug should be brought to the attention of the Courts.  Had this evidence been available during her trial in 1995, the outcome would likely have been very different.  Please sign her petition today, ask friends, family, co-workers to sign also to help Courtney get the attention she needs from officials to grant her the freedom and second chance that she deserves.

Mailing Address
Office of the Governor
P.O. Box 12428
Austin, Texas 78711-2428

Mailing Address
Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles
P. O. Box 13401
Austin, Texas 78711-3401
Email: bpp-pio@tdcj.texas.gov


https://ssristories.org/15-year-old-girl-kills-grandmother-13-years-ago-life-sentence/

Grapevine woman: Emotional distress caused her to kill grandmother — (Star-Telegram)

Original article no longer available

Star-Telegram

May 26, 2008

By DOMINGO RAMIREZ JR., Star-Telegram Staff Writer

S-T/KELLEY CHINN

Courtney Dunkin, 29, speaks to a Star-Telegram reporter at the Hobby Unit in Marlin. She is serving a life sentence for killing her grandmother in 1994 when she was 15.

MARLIN — The young woman sat talking in a soft voice, her long, dark brown hair on her shoulders at the prison unit where she’s serving a life sentence. Tears came as Courtney Dunkin talked about her grandmother — the 63-year-old woman Dunkin was convicted of fatally shooting in the head in 1994 at their home in Grapevine.

She’s been in custody for 14 years. She will be eligible for parole on May 26, 2034.

“I’d give anything to turn back time,” she said. “I just wish it hadn’t happened.”

Dunkin leaned forward as she held the telephone tighter in the interview room where glass separates visitors and inmates.

“I wasn’t angry at her,” she said. “I don’t know why it happened.”

Of the 1,293 female inmates at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s Hobby Unit, Dunkin is one of the youngest killers. She was 15 when she shot the woman who raised her and whom she called Mom. She’s now 29 and spoke out for the first time one recent morning about the events leading up to the killing of Betty Dunkin. She declined to talk about details of the slaying.

Childhood

Courtney Dunkin went to live with her paternal grandparents, John and Betty Dunkin, when she was 5. Her parents had divorced; her father was an alcoholic, and relatives didn’t talk about her mother.

Shortly after moving to Grapevine, she began attending Dove Elementary and was diagnosed with attention-deficit (hyperactivity) disorder. School friends would occasionally spend the night, but she spent many hours with her grandfather, who owned a construction company and had a flexible schedule allowing time for her. Her grandmother worked days at General Motors and prepared dinner when she got home.

In 1989, John Dunkin died of cancer, leaving Courtney Dunkin, then 11, shattered.

“I knew he was sick, but no one told me he might die,” she said. “I didn’t have anyone to talk to about it. I would try to talk to Mom about it, but she would just cry.”

Teenage problems

As her grief lingered, Courtney Dunkin entered Grapevine Middle School. She started to wear black clothing and decorated her room in black. Troubles — sassing, tardiness and detention — at school started to mount. Arguments with her grandmother increased, and Courtney Dunkin became known to police.

“It seems that when we would be questioning some suspects at an apartment or at a house, there was Courtney,” recently retired Grapevine police Detective Bob Murphy said. “We got to know her name.”

Betty Dunkin’s answer to her granddaughter’s problems was counseling: at school, at hospitals and with family therapists, Courtney Dunkin said. Betty Dunkin also joined ToughLove, a support group that helps parents with out-of-control children.

About that time, Courtney Dunkin said, she was prescribed Paxil, an antidepressant on which she would intentionally overdose on a few occasions. In 2004, the Food and Drug Administration began requiring its strongest label warning for Paxil and other antidepressants because they increase the risk of suicidal thinking and behavior in children.

Dunkin says she was suicidal at the time of her grandmother’s death and irrational because of the medication and the death of her grandfather.

Before the shooting

Police reports indicate that the teen ran away several times in the weeks before the shooting; Dunkin says it was only once.

“I’d miss my curfew, and Mom called the police,” Dunkin said. “Many times I’d be home in an hour, but police still listed me as a runaway.”

Two months before the slaying, Dunkin was arrested for theft after stealing jewelry from her grandmother, she said. She was sentenced to a year’s probation. A few weeks later, authorities fitted her with an ankle monitor after she was driving illegally and became involved in a traffic accident.

The shooting

On the night of May 26, 1994, Dunkin and Jamie Hatfield, 16, who was her best friend, talked on the telephone about killing Hatfield’s boyfriend, police said.

But the focus shifted to Dunkin’s grandmother and how they could get her car so they could run away, according to court records. Dunkin got off the phone and took two gas credit cards and all the money in her grandmother’s purse. Then she took a key to her grandfather’s gun case, removed a .38-caliber pistol and took it to her room.

Dunkin phoned Hatfield, who suggested chopping up pills and putting them in her grandmother’s food so she would go to sleep and they could take the car.

Dunkin hung up and walked into her grandmother’s bedroom, according to court records.

She gave this statement to Murphy: “I hid the gun behind my back and walked into my mom’s room, and we talked for a minute, and I shot her. When I shot the gun, I saw sparks, and it was so loud that my ears were ringing, and I felt deaf. The smell was really bad and followed me into the car, and it made me sick.”

Dunkin spent the rest of the night at Hatfield’s home, but the next morning Hatfield’s mother sensed that something was wrong, police said.The three of them went to the Dunkin home and found the body, police said. The girls were arrested hours later.

“It all happened so fast,” Courtney Dunkin said of the shooting. “I didn’t realize what I’d done. They [police] wanted a motive, and I didn’t know why. I didn’t want to tell them that I was suicidal.”

After the slaying

Hatfield was convicted of aggravated robbery in July 1996 and sentenced to five years in prison. She was released July 16, 1999, according to prison records.

She has also been involved in a prison program for at-risk kids who spend a day at the prison in hopes that they will be discouraged from crime.

Old school friends still visit Dunkin; her father hasn’t been there in years. Her mother, whom she almost never saw as a child, stopped writing to her a few years ago when Dunkin learned that she had half-siblings and wanted to get in touch with them.

For parents with troubled children, Dunkin offered one bit of advice.

“Even if they roll their eyes, communicate with them,” she said. “Just don’t listen and then walk away. Talk to them.”
DOMINGO RAMIREZ JR. 817-685-3822  ramirez@star-telegram.com

Dr David Healy Cleared To Testify In Paxil Suicide Case…


Where does the buck stop?

http://www.law360.com/productliability/articles/865174/expert-ok-to-testify-in-gsk-suit-by-reed-smith-atty-s-widow?nl_pk=e32b9586-8e50-4282-bd7d-fc0e212e42e7&utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=productliability

Expert OK To Testify In GSK Suit By Reed Smith Atty’s Widow

Law360, New York (November 22, 2016, 3:11 PM EST) — An Illinois federal judge on Monday canceled a pretrial hearing scheduled to vet an expert witness for the widow of a former Reed Smith LLP partner who killed himself allegedly as a result of taking GlaxoSmithKline PLC’s antidepressant drug, finding that the expert’s past issues had already been settled.
Dr. David Healy, who’s set to testify on behalf of widow Wendy Dolin when her trial against GSK begins in January, was scheduled first to take part in a pretrial hearing regarding an investigation into a past patient incident by the General Medical Council, the governing board of medicine in the United Kingdom where his practice is located.

However, that investigation has since closed with no finding of wrongdoing, and the Illinois federal court’s in camera review of documents related to the council’s inquiry have turned up nothing either, therefore a hearing to vet Dr. Healy is no longer warranted, U.S. District Judge William T. Hart decided.

“As stated by this court before the GMC investigation was closed ‘investigations, without finding of culpability, are typically not relevant.’ Moreover, there is nothing in the in camera documents to warrant a hearing or disclosure of the documents. Accordingly, no pretrial hearing of Dr. Healy’s testimony will be held,” Judge Hart wrote.

The judge indicated that the court would hang onto the in camera documents until the conclusion of the trial, which is set to begin Jan. 17.

“This case is about Paxil-induced self-harm, not a medical board investigation where Dr. Healy was cleared of any wrongdoing and had nothing to do with Paxil,” Robert Wisner of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman PC, an attorney for Dolin, told Law360. “GSK wants to distract the jury with any and everything that does not center on GSK’s conduct. The court, thankfully, saw through it.”

A representative for GSK declined to comment.

Dolin had asked Senior U.S. District Judge James B. Zagel in August to cancel the December hearing over Healy after the General Medical Council cleared him in an investigation following the suicide of one of his patients.

Judge Zagel had requested the hearing to determine whether GSK could ask Healy about the council’s investigation in front of the jury during the upcoming trial. But Dolin had argued that GSK’s investigation-based attacks on Healy were no longer relevant to the case.

Dolin sued GSK and Mylan Inc. in 2012, two years after her husband, Stewart, threw himself in front of a train. He began taking Mylan’s generic form of GSK’s antidepressant Paxil just a few days before his death.

Wendy Dolin claims GSK covered up an increased risk of suicide associated with Paxil by manipulating data used in a study that was submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. She also wants GSK held liable for failing to include a warning on its packaging about the risk.

For more than a year now, the parties have battled over Healy, a British psychiatrist who will testify for the widow about his research into the causal relationship between Paxil and adult suicide. While under investigation by the council, Healy wrote on his blog that he was likely being targeted by major drug manufacturers like GSK because of his testimony in various cases against the companies.

After Judge Zagel ensured the case would go to trial by declining to rule on GSK’s summary judgment bids earlier this year, GSK pressed him to force Healy to reveal documents related to the council’s investigation, arguing they were relevant to Healy’s credibility and potential bias against the drugmaker. Dolin countered, saying the public filing of the documents could cost Healy his job.

Judge Zagel denied GSK’s efforts to get the documents, which were submitted to the court for in camera review, but said he wanted to hold a special hearing to determine whether the U.K. investigation is relevant to the Dolin case.

Dolin is represented by R. Brent Wisner, Michael L. Baum, Bijan Esfandiari and Frances M. Phares of Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman PC, and David Rapoport, Joshua L. Weisberg and Melanie VanOverloop of Rapoport Law Offices PC.

GSK is represented by Alan S. Gilbert and Anders Wick of Dentons LLP, Chilton D. Varner, Andrew Bayman, Todd Davis and Heather Howard of King & Spalding LLP, and Robert Glanville, Thomas Wiswall, Tamar Halpern and Eva Canaan of Phillips Lytle LLP.

The case is Dolin v. Smithkline Beecham Corp. et al., case number 1:12-cv-06403, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.

— Additional reporting by Emily Field, Kat Greene and Diana Novak Jones. Editing by Ben Guilfoy.