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[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
This letter was dispatched today on behalf of Diane Booth, mother, and Vincent, her only child, a son (9) taken from her at 6 due to her "negligence" in failing to see the need to "treat" Vincent for his "brain disease"/ "chemical imbalance" ADHD, with the "chemical balancer" Ritalin.

According to the Bazelon Institute more than a million US families may have had to "relinquish custody" of their children so that they might get necessary treatment for their "emergency", "life-threatening",psychiatric", diseases".
(see attached "Custody Relinquishment" for "Essential" Psychiatric Treatment ).]

December 10, 2002

Honorable Leonard P. Edwards

Dept. 67

Juvenile Dependency Division

115 Terraine Street

San Jose, CA 96110

Regarding: Diane and Vincent Booth, Case # JD11110

Dear Judge Edwards,

I am writing to about the case of Diane and Vincent Booth, a mother and son, adjudicated in your court. I have never met either of them in person, but have become acquainted with them, and their medico-legal situation, by e-mail, phone, and fax, over the past 2 years, and have come to know the medical facts of the case. The facts concerning the essential nature of “mental illness” generally, and of ADHD, in particular, have been severely misrepresented to you.

I am a neurologist/child neurologist (CV, enclosure #1) I have long been concerned about the mis-representation of psychiatric conditions/diagnoses to be actual brain diseases-neurological diseases (my specialty)–when no proof exists that they are.

Enclosed is my testimony to the US House of Representatives (enclosure #2) During the discussion period I added: “any physician saying that any psychiatric condition is an actual physical disease is fraud.” The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has regularly perjured itself on this very point.

In a “special advertising feature” in the November 20, 2001, Family Circle magazine, mental health leaders, including Richard K. Harding, President of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), and Surgeon General, David Satcher, cast aside the equivocal term “disorders” and proclaimed that they diagnose and treat “diseases”-”brain diseases.” In his essay, “Unlocking the Brain’s Secrets”, Harding, speaking for all organized psychiatry (APA), states:

“We now know that mental illnesses-such as depression or schizophrenia-are not “moral weaknesses” or “imagined” but real diseases caused by abnormalities of brain structure and imbalances of chemicals in the brain.”

Harding knows full-well there is no proven abnormality of the brain to make either depression or schizophrenia, a disease. This is a lie.

Steven Miran, MD, Medical Director of the American Psychiatric Association, testified to the US House of Representatives (House Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations” April 5, 2000.):

“scientific research over the last two decades has shown that severe mental illness and addictive disorders are…diseases of the brain with a strong genetic and biological basis.”

This too is a lie- psychiatry’s “big lie” by which endless numbers of normal children and adults are made into “patients” who then must be treated for their own good.

Also enclosed (enclosure #3) is a letter from Bernard Alpert, MD, Past-President, California Medical Board. Observe, in particular, paragraph 1, page 2:

“As you outlined in your letter, there is tremendous professional support for categorizing emotional and psychological conditions as diseases of the brain. In published materials, some quoted in your letter, you will find that support from chairs of psychiatric departments, the American Psychiatric Association and professors of major medical schools. It is clear that the psychiatric community has set their standard, and while one might disagree with it, that standard becomes the legal standard, and while one might disagree with it, that standard becomes the legal standard upon which the Board must base its actions.”

What we here, perfectly described by the then-President of the Medical Board, is (1) lying to patients and to the public having become the “standard of practice” because all in the profession are doing it; (2) violating their right to informed consent having become the “standard of practice” because all in the profession are doing it.

All physicians, psychiatrists included, study pathology-diseases, and how to distinguish disease/abnormality from no disease/physical normalcy. All physicians remain responsible, medico-legally speaking, for this distinction throughout their medical careers. They know that until they have demonstrated a physical (including chemical) abnormality in the individual they have not confirmed the presence of a disease (disease = abnormality).

There is no demonstrable abnormality in attention-deficit, hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the diagnosis made in Vincent Booth, which lead to the recommendation that he take Ritalin (methylphenidate), a Schedule II, addictive, dangerous, sometimes deadly (160 deaths reported to the FDA-Med Watch program 1990-1997) psycho-stimulant. This recommendation, based upon the presumption that ADHD is an actual disease, and that Vincent had been proved to have it, was correctly doubted by his mother who then refused the suggestion that he take Ritalin. This lead to (1) his removal from his mother’s custody, (2) his placement in a mental health facility, (3) assertion of the ADHD diagnosis, and (4) enforcement of it’s treatment with Ritalin assuming not only that ADHD was a bona fide disease but that it’s drug treatment-refused by the mother–constituted a life-threatening medical emergency, justifying the court’s intervention.

Since ADHD is not a bona fide, real, actual, organic, diagnosable, disease, disease, how can the failure to treat it be a medical emergency; one warranting court-ordered treatment or termination of a natural parent’s custody to do so?

Due to her stance on this issue, regarding her son, Diane Booth is now a refugee (and fugitive from US and California law) residing somewhere (I know not where) in Canada.

She has provided me with the following information regarding Vincent’s medico-legal status. My comments are within the text, in parentheses [..].
They are meant to provide a scientific, medical perspective for the court, which I hope you will find useful in your further deliberations on this case.


MARCH 19, 1999: Meeting with Pamela McMahn, School Psychologist, Cherry Chase School, Sunnyvale, CA re. Assessment and Notification of Referral for Special Education. Discussed my assertion of rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act; I told the panel that I refuse to put my son on Ritalin.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
DB had to have been told that ADHD is a disease or something tantamount to a disease; something for which Ritalin was appropriate treatment--appropriate and urgently required treatment. I can defend the conclusion that any such explanation or suggestion is contrary to the scientific facts and a violation of the mother's and child's informed consent rights; and further, that it is a violation of the court's (any court's) parens patriae, informed consent rights.]

APRIL 4, 1999: Parent conference re. Vincent’s “hyperactivity”.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
"hyperactivity/ADHD is being described as an abnormality/disease within Vincent; something for which medication is essential; withholding it--parental negligence. This is pure misrepresentation, scientifically and medically]

APRIL 24, 1999: Referral to Sunnyvale Police Dept. for “alleged suspected emotional abuse” and domestic violence” by Cherry Chase School.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Was the mother deemed thus because of her refusal to consider Ritalin "treatment"? ]

JULY 29, 1999: Vincent removed from custody of mother by social worker Christy Tran and Officer Terry Schillinger.

NOVEMBER 19, 1999: Vincent prescribed Ritalin, Dexedrine and Cyclert by Daniel Katzenberg, M.D. of Santa Clara County Medical Centre

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
This treatment is begun wholly without parent or child informed consent/assent, in fact in defiance of mother's and child's desires, based on diagnosis of hyperactivity/ADHD--represented to be a disease/abnormality-a total misrepresentation. He has no symptoms or signs of narcolepsy the only true neurologic disease for which the Schedule II, psychostimulants (Ritalin, Dexedrine) can legally be prescribed. The court (parens patriae) must have been lead to believe by this diagnosing and prescribing physician that ADHD was a bona fide disease; one needing urgent treatment with such drugs, and needing removal from custody of the mother to accomplish such treatment. In fact ADHD is not a proven disease or, more basically, an individual-by-individual diagnosable disease. To take such decision-making out of the hands of the natural parent is not, therefore, justifiable ]

DECEMBER 8, 1999: Vincent prescribed Imipramine (Tofranil), a heterocyclic anti-depressant. Side effects: constipation, difficulty in urination, disorientation, confusion.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Vincent has no organic disease diagnosis justifying this prescription. This group of drugs, the heterocyclic anti-depressants, was reported in the early 1990's to cause sudden cardiac death and their embargo in pediatric practice was urged ]

MARCH 16, 2000: Vincent started taking Ritalin 5 mg. Side effects: anxiety, agitation, tics, “Tourette’s syndrome.”

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
all of these are side effects of Ritalin in a previously normal child. All are signs of brain toxicity to the medication, Ritalin. By all indications, this child was neurologically normal when removed from the mother to "treat" him. This being the case, separation of the mother and son was, and is, without medical justification]

MAY, 2000: Vincent hospitalized several times for severe bruising of face suffered at Eastfield Ming Quong.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
In no way can this be the result of any medical problem existing prior to his court-ordered hospitalization]

JUNE, 2000: I filed for an Emergency Protective Order in Federal Court with pictures of Vincent’s injuries as exhibit. Judge denies.

JULY 2, 2000: Escape with Vincent into Canada.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Here was a natural mother acting appropriately, if not in accord with the letter of the law, and court order, to prevent iatrogenic (medical) injury-not legitimate medical treatment-to her son.]

SEPTEMBER, 2000: Vincent finally recovered, “tics” subsided.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
pointing to fact that tics were Ritalin-induced, not naturally arising, idiopathic, Tourette's syndrome.]

SEPTEMBER 10, 2000:Apprehended by police who had $500,000 bounty for Vincent

SEPT. 11, 2000: Vincent returned to Santa Clara County – requires hospitalization for severe emotional distress and separation anxiety.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
requires hospitalization (it is said) for problems induced by intervention of county/state employees.]

FEB. 5, 2002: Letter from Dept. of Social Services, Community Care Licensing Division stating that investigation revealed Vincent was hospitalized for mouth inflammation/swelling.

AUG. 8, 2002: Status Review Report of Franklin Kitchener states that Vincent has regressed to a primitive condition, severe, related to out-of-home placement.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
I concur. In my opinion, his regression to a primitive condition is entirely related to the Santa Clara Co. termination of the lawful, natural, custody of Vincent by his mother and his psychiatric treatment, particularly his treatment with several psychiatric drugs (see below).]


“Status Review Report, 08/08/2002″:

Albuterol 2 puffs prn, for asthma. Buspar and Zoloft for anxiety, Risperdal for impulsivity..

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Asthma, where appropriately diagnosed is an actual organic disease. Did it pre-exist his psychiatric hospitalization or was it diagnosed following this hospitalizations? Asthma symptoms and signs can be side effects of many medications. No DSM-IV construct of "anxiety" or "impulsivity" are actual diseases of the brain or body; further, Buspar, Zoloft and Risperdal would all be "off-label" uses for a child this age. ]


Aggressive without reason or if agitated. Nervous tics, which include licking self and objects and biting the inside of his cheek fingers lips nails.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Surely the "nervous tics, and probably all of the purposeless motor activities, above, are drug-induced side effects of the multiple psychotropic drugs he is on-polypharmacy, for which their can be no scientific basis or predictable beneficial outcome]


Appears, socially immature regressed, and primitive, at a 2-3 yr level. Little or no positive interaction with others..

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
This was not in the least, his appearance at the time of his initial psychiatric incarceration and is likely the result of the sum-total of his psychiatric/medical/poly-pharmaceutical management, to the exclusion of all maternal and family contacts. This child's psychiatric incarceration, based on the diagnosis of the fictitious, fraudulent, psychiatric "disease"-ADHD-- was never medically justified, just as none of the many psychiatric drugs have been medically justifiable. All such factors are sufficient explanation for his now-regressed, primitive appearance. The mother's expressed concern that he might die from these drugs is far from idle speculation. Childhood deaths from psychotropic drugs are a growing epidemic in the US, all the more common with polypharmacy-the use of more than a single drug at a time. Nor in the face of such deaths can it ever be contended that the psychiatric "disease" is the cause because no such thing as a psychiatric "disease" has been proved to exist]

He is in 3rd grade, special education; IEP is current, some progress in focus on school work, self control.

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Special education placement is yet another assumption based on non-physical, subjective, psychometric, criteria that he is brain-damaged/diseased/abnormal. There was no indication prior to this hospitalization that he was mentally retarded/subnormal. This is yet another indication of regression, most likely attributable to the sum total of his psychiatric/medical "treatments" since being taken from his mother's custody.]

Dx: DSM-IV, Axis I, diagnoses: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder-PTSD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder–ODD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder-GAD, ADHD (with episodic eneuresis).

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
Not a single one of these is an actual disease of the brain or body justifying court-ordered removal of the child from his mother/family for purposes of "treatment". Further, any physician, regardless of specialty, telling any parent (parens patriae included) or patient that they are diseases/abnormalities within the child, is a fraud and abrogation of informed consent. First and foremost physicians, regardless of subsequent specialty are trained to know diseases and to recognize the presence or absence of disease in their patients. Further they are all medico-legally responsible for doing just that. They all know that until such time as they demonstrate a macroscopic, microscopic or chemical abnormality in a patient they are not justified in saying disease is present-any disease. ]

DOB: 6/19/93; 9 years, 4 months. Axis IV “Severe, related to out of home placement; parent engaging in dangerous activity, trauma. Current general assessment of functioning (GAF) Highest GAF 55, lowest 40.


At the November 16-18, 1998, ADHD Consensus Conference (National Institutes of Health), William B. Carey, reporting on “Is ADHD a Valid Disorder?” concluded: “What is described as ADHD in the United States appears to be a set of normal behavioral variations…” The final statement of Consensus Conference Panel, November 18, 1998, read : ” …we do not have an independent, valid test for ADHD, and there are no data to indicate that ADHD is due to a brain malfunction.” Nor has there been confirmation of ADHD as a disease-one that can be objectively diagnosed, individual-by individual (including Vincent Booth), from that time to the present. For a statement as to the scientific status of ADHD today
see my appended

letter to the editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association of 11/05/02
. All physicians, psychiatrists included, know that they have not confirmed the presence of an actual disease until such time as they have demonstrated an objective physical or chemical abnormality.

Having said to parents or authorities with jurisdiction over a child/individual (parens patriae ) that ADHD is a disease; one requiring medication, without which the child’s health and life are at risk, abrogates the informed consent rights of this child and his mother, and, in fact, the informed consent rights of the judge/court adjudicating this case.

For it’s part, the judge/court had a duty to ascertain not just the prevailing practice in the community, but the state of the science concerning so-called ADHD, before enforcing dangerous, addictive, medications and separating physically normal children from their natural parents.

What was done to this child in 1999, and is still being done, in Santa Clara County, in the State of California in the name of psychiatric “treatment” has been nothing but psychologically and physically damaging. Having been consulted in several cases of deaths due to Ritalin and other psychiatric drugs, my concern is not just for the health of the child-Vincent-but for his life, as well.

All treatments for diagnoses not those of real, verifiable, diseases, should be expiditiously, but cautiously, and gradually, and with appropriate medical supervision, withdrawn. At the same time, and again, with no delay, Vincent should be returned to his mother-Diane, who has shown no inability to care for him and make responsible health care decisions for him.

All physicians and professionals who have misrepresented the true nature of ADHD and any other psychiatric “diseases” to this parent and child (Diane and Vincent Booth) and to yourself, having had parens patriae responsibility for Vincent, should be reported to the Medical Board of California for having wholly abrogated their rights to informed consent; this being tantamount, in the instance of physicians to medical malpractice; and in the instance of educational personnel and other non-physicians (psychologists) to the practice of medicine without a license.

Do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any further help to you in this or related matters.

Sincerely yours,

Fred A. Baughman, Jr. MD, Neurology/Child Neurology

1303 Hidden Mountain Drive
El Cajon, CA 92019

CC: Senator Liz Figueroa, Senator “Dede” Alpert, Assemblyman Jay LaSuer, Gary Gitnick, MD, President, California Medical Board

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