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Tags erica fraysure , montel williams , sylvia browne

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Old 5th May 2007, 12:19 PM   #1
Questioninggeller
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Linda Mineer v Montel Williams (Browne related)

Quote:
82 F.Supp.2d 702

Linda Marie MINEER, etc., Plaintiff,
v.
Montel WILLIAMS, et al, Defendants.

No. Civ.A. 99-187.

United States District Court, E.D. Kentucky, at Covington.

February 3, 2000.

...
OPINION & ORDER
...
This matter is before the court on the motion of defendants to dismiss. Inasmuch as statements at the hearing were considered, the motion will be treated as one for summary judgment as well. FED. R.CIV.P. 12(b). Since the cause of action for invasion of privacy does not survive after death and the requisite elements for intentional infliction of emotional distress are absent, the motion must be granted and the complaint dismissed.

FACTS
...
Nearly a year later, on September 24, 1998, the Montel Williams Show — a national talk show — featured the psychic Sylvia Browne. This psychic appeared on the show to use her abilities and powers to assist the show's guests in obtaining information regarding their loved ones who were either dead or missing. Erica Fraysure's mother, Maggie Doherty, was one of the guests. After a video segment regarding the background of Erica's disappearance, the psychic and Ms. Doherty exchanged questions and answers concerning Erica. The psychic identified Erica's murderer as a man who at the time of the show was in prison.1

Thereafter, Ms. Doherty asked if anyone knew any information about the murder. The psychic answered affirmatively. In response to Ms. Doherty's question "What is this person's name?", the psychic said "Chris." Someone involved with the production of the Montel Williams Show made the decision to edit the sound so that the name of "Chris" could not be heard. However, according to plaintiffs anyone watching the show could discern that the name was "Chris" by watching a close-up of the psychic.
...
A few months later, in January of 1999, Ms. Browne was again the featured guest of the Montel Williams Show. During the broadcast, Montel Williams and Ms. Browne implied that Chris Mineer was determined to be responsible for the disappearance and presumed death of Erica Fraysure. Montel Williams made the following comments to exemplify the telepathic powers of Ms. Browne:
...
See preview of court decision (Requires payment for the full copy)

Quote:
JUDGE DROPS SUIT OVER 'MONTEL' SHOW.
From: The Kentucky Post (Covington, KY)
January 15, 2000

A federal judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit that claimed syndicated television talk show host Montel Williams invaded the privacy of a man who shot and killed his girlfriend and then committed suicide in 1998.
...
Source

Quote:
SUIT ENDS AGAINST TV SHOW JUDGE RULES AGAINST MOTHER; NO APPEAL.
The Kentucky Post (Covington, KY)
February 21, 2000

The mother of a Brooksville man who committed suicide two years ago has decided not to appeal a judge's ruling that dismissed her lawsuit against talk show host Montel Williams.
...
Source

Last edited by Questioninggeller; 5th May 2007 at 12:34 PM.
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Old 5th May 2007, 12:25 PM   #2
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Obviously the outcome had no effect on Williams and Browne. They're still at it. One is as sick and twisted as the other.
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Old 5th May 2007, 12:31 PM   #3
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I'd never heard this. Am I the only one that hadn't heard the whole sordid story?

http://www.enquirer.com/editions/199...round_the.html
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Old 5th May 2007, 01:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Christopher Mineer, 28, shot his fiancee, 24-year-old Carmen Moorhead, , and then himself in his home on Sept. 25, 1998 — the day after the psychic appeared on Mr. Williams' show and said Erica was in water.

Court documents detail that Mr. Williams said in a later episode that the psychic “gave up the name (in the missing person case) ... and the next thing you know, the guy who probably commited the murder to begin with realized "the law is on my tail.' He killed himself and his other girlfriend. That's what the lieutenant told me, too.”

Kentucky State Police Detective Robert Scott, the lead investigator in the missing-person case, has said Mr. Mineer was questioned in Erica's disappearance but that his alibi checked out. Erica is still missing.
Williams and Saliva are as disgusting as each other.
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Old 6th May 2007, 03:46 PM   #5
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Yeah, I was shocked when I read the news reports of it.

As low as Montel and Sylv are, this is hands down one of the lowest of about five points in either of their careers.

Disgusting.
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Old 6th May 2007, 04:25 PM   #6
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And they have absolutely no problem living with themselves, do they? : (
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Old 6th May 2007, 04:32 PM   #7
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I've said it before, and will probably say it again, they sleep very well on their expensive, high thread count sheets.

If money is your God, then the ends really do justify the means.
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Old 6th May 2007, 04:40 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by PastBrowneFan View Post
I've said it before, and will probably say it again, they sleep very well on their expensive, high thread count sheets.

If money is your God, then the ends really do justify the means.

True. I just got an image, tho, of them sleeping on those expensive, high-thread count sheets together. (Ewww!)
Anyway, you are right. To them the bottom line of their lives is the almighty dollar.

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Old 16th June 2009, 11:50 AM   #9
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A little more on this:

Quote:
Mom of dead son sues TV host - Says he was wrongly tied to missing teen
The Kentucky Post - Thursday, September 23, 1999
Author: John C.K. Fisher, Post staff reporter

The mother of a Brooksville man who shot and killed himself last year has filed a federal lawsuit claiming that television talk show host Montel Williams cast her son in an unfavorable light during a program featuring a psychic commenting on a missing Bracken County teen-ager.

Linda Marie Mineer, in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Covington, sued Williams, three producers of his show, Paramount Pictures and Viacom Inc., which produce and distribute the show, and psychic Sylvia Browne, frequent guest on the show.
...
The lawsuit said a show that was broadcast on Sept. 24, 1998, featured Ms. Browne, the psychic, who gave Miss Fraysure's mother, Maggie Doherty, information about her daughter's disappearance.

Ms. Doherty later told The Post that Ms. Browne said a man who was in prison last year killed Erica and dumped her body in a lake not far from where Erica's car was found. Ms. Browne also said someone named Chris knew important information.

The police dragged Perry Poe Lake in Bracken County last year, but did not find Miss Fraysure's body.

The lawsuit said Williams referred to Mineer in another show that was broadcast after Mineer killed himself:

"He (Christopher Mineer) murdered his girlfriend and was implicated in that case that Sylvia (Browne ) talked about. So if you want to wonder whether or not this woman (Ms. Browne) is talking fact or fiction, she gave up the name to this family (Ms. Doherty) during the break, and the next thing you know, the guy (Mineer) who probably committed the murder to begin with, realized the law is on my tail. He (Mineer) killed himself and his other girlfriend."

The lawsuit said Ms. Browne said during that show "that's what the lieutenant told me, too."

And Williams responded by saying, "That's right."

The suit said Williams, his producers and Ms. Browne failed to confirm with police that Mineer was not a suspect in Ms. Fraysure's disappearance.
...
A spokesman for Williams in New York on Wednesday declined comment. Ms. Browne could not be reached for comment.
Full article: Source

On another note:

Quote:

FORTUNE-TELLING RULING PLEASES TWO PSYCHICS FORTUNE-TELLING DECISION PLEASES PSYCHICS
San Jose Mercury News (CA) - Friday, August 16, 1985
Author: JAY GOLDMAN, Mercury News Staff Writer

Two area psychics today applauded the state Supreme Court ruling that strikes down prohibitions on fortune telling -- but warned that without regulation, fakes could get into the business.

An assistant to San Jose psychic Flores Merino, one of only two fortune tellers licensed by San Jose, said, "As far as she was concerned it (the court ruling) sounds fine. But (applicants) should be screened before granting a license because, otherwise, it is bad for legitimate businesses. They should weed out the fake ones; they should be regulated." The assistant chose not to identify himself.

The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that laws prohibiting fortune telling violate the state Constitution's free speech protections.

Saratoga psychic Sylvia Brown said she, too, has ambivalent feelings about the decision.

''I think it's marvelous because I believe in free speech," the founder of the Nirvana Foundation said, "but I worry that it may bring the 'tent people' out -- the ones who ask you to cross their palms with silver and take the cash and run.

''I came from a time when I had to fight all the way to make this a profession. I had to prove myself and earn the right to win acceptance and work with doctors and lawyers, and I hate to think that this decision could lump those of us who are legitimate with the crystal ball-gazers and the palm readers. People deserve to be protected from those who are, to us, like quack doctors are to the medical profession."
...
Full article: Source

I'd like some names of the people she "proved" herself to.
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Old 16th June 2009, 01:55 PM   #10
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"fortune-telling ruling pleases two psychics"

I'm going to keep this handy if I ever run out of syrup of Ipecac, it's an excellent vomit inducer.
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Old 16th June 2009, 05:25 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by PastBrowneFan View Post
I've said it before, and will probably say it again, they sleep very well on their expensive, high thread count sheets.

If money is your God, then the ends really do justify the means.
I suppose you are right.

The sad part-or one of them, at least-for me, is that before I started learning about SB and the role Williams has played in allowing her to prey on the vulnerable and the grieving, I actually had respect for Williams. Both as a veteran, and for his battle with multiple sclerosis.

No more. His enabling of Browne just leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. I'm sure a lot of folks feel the same way.
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Old 16th June 2009, 05:35 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by PastBrowneFan View Post
If money is your God, then the ends really do justify the means.
.
Sigworthy. Yoinked.
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Old 16th June 2009, 09:43 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
I suppose you are right.

The sad part-or one of them, at least-for me, is that before I started learning about SB and the role Williams has played in allowing her to prey on the vulnerable and the grieving, I actually had respect for Williams. Both as a veteran, and for his battle with multiple sclerosis.

No more. His enabling of Browne just leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. I'm sure a lot of folks feel the same way.
I not only lost all my respect for Williams because of Browne, I had all respect for him obliterated.

The funny thing is that if it weren't for Browne, I would really admire him very much. He does nice things for people. Champions some very good causes. Raises awareness about very important things. Is very smart, charismatic, handsome and funny.

Amazing how someone can be so respectable and blameless in all matters of his career and life on one hand (well, he's had three marriages and two divorces and one of his daughters was a wild child in high school so that doesn't speak too highly of him) and so morally bankrupt on the other hand.

How a father of four could have not only let but helped Browne exploit the murders/kidnappings of children and the victimization of their parents, though...that trully is inexplicable.
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Old 17th June 2009, 04:47 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by EeneyMinnieMoe View Post
Amazing how someone can be so respectable and blameless in all matters of his career and life on one hand (well, he's had three marriages and two divorces and one of his daughters was a wild child in high school so that doesn't speak too highly of him)
I can't easily lay that one at his door. Not disputing your observations about Williams' moral bankruptcy-but I've known many good parents with children who went through a "wild child" phase, especially during puberty. Sometimes, kids go a little wild despite the best efforts of the parents.

I do agree that his being a parent makes his actions regarding Browne even more baffling. To condone what she has done to other parents...as you said, inexplicable. Unconscionable, and completely without justification.
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Old 17th June 2009, 08:54 AM   #15
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Agreed. Then, Browne is a mother and a grandmother as well. She actually once said something to the effect of "Having sons and a granddaughter, I'd never lie to anyone about their kids cause I know how awful it must be to lose a child". "Never" meaning "several times a week".

John Edward is also a father, of a 7-year-old and a 2-year-old. And that doesn't seem to stop him from exploiting grieving parents.

James Van Praagh has no children, as he is in a same sex marriage and apparently has never adopted. Still, he should be ashamed of himself for taking advantage of Shawn Hornbeck's mother and stepfather and probably many others.
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Old 17th June 2009, 06:43 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by EeneyMinnieMoe View Post
Agreed. Then, Browne is a mother and a grandmother as well. She actually once said something to the effect of "Having sons and a granddaughter, I'd never lie to anyone about their kids cause I know how awful it must be to lose a child". "Never" meaning "several times a week".
She may be a mother and a grandmother, but she has never lost a child - you have to live that particular grief to understand it. I doubt that many bereaved mothers would willingly inflict that kind of pain on another mother without regard for the truth. Just another example of how inhumane Browne is. I know it's true, but it still boggles my mind with every new example.

Quote:
John Edward is also a father, of a 7-year-old and a 2-year-old. And that doesn't seem to stop him from exploiting grieving parents.

James Van Praagh has no children, as he is in a same sex marriage and apparently has never adopted. Still, he should be ashamed of himself for taking advantage of Shawn Hornbeck's mother and stepfather and probably many others.
This, too, is inexplicable. How do they live with themselves? I know they probably laugh all the way to the bank, but if there is a hell, they've each got a place in it.
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Old 17th June 2009, 09:26 PM   #17
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I know what you mean. Browne still boggles my mind and I've been on her case for more than two years now! Every time you think you couldn't like her less, she goes ahead and surprises you.

How JVP and JE can live with themselves is also inexplicable. Maybe they believe in their own abilities, like many mediums do? Do they strike you as true believers? Van Praagh maybe. John Edward- no, most likely not. Though he does seem to be sincere about his spirituality and actually seems to truly believe in God.

It's funny but neither of them seem particularly despicable outside of pretending to contact the dead. Maybe it's the banality of evil but Edward could make one's head explode when he is on stage...but off stage, he seems not only like he'd be ok to hang out with for a few hours, he seems like he'd actually be boring.

Mining his personal life for clues, you see nothing to indicate a criminal con man. Unlike Browne, no adultery, no allegedly out of wedlock child, no estrangement from a parent, no custody suits, no lawsuits, no failed marriages, no arrests, no allegations of misconduct and bad behavior from former employees, no reports of racist statements made in private. Unlike Browne, actually went to a real college and got a real degree. Happy marriage, two kids.

The only thing you can sort of point to is that he says his parents had a bad relationship and he ended up living with his mother's relatives as a child and her family was in some ways dysfunctional- but that's all irrelevant to his own character and, as with Montel's daughter, probably not his fault.

Guess it's dangerous to try to link someone's personal life with their professional life to learn about their character, anyway. Charlton Heston was an alcoholic but that said nothing about his politics or whether they were right or not. Tom Cruise has two failed marriages, is a high school dropout and was raised by a single mother but that says nothing about his involvement with Scientology. George Bush was a wild partier for half his life but that in and of itself doesn't say anything about his competency, intelligence and level of responsibility.
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Old 19th June 2009, 01:29 PM   #18
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One last thing to be said about Montel Williams- he has forever forfeited the right to criticize any of his guests. Any of them. Even when he is arguably correct.

When he has a deadbeat father with a gambling problem who is constantly in and out of jail and is wanted for not paying alimony and child support in two states on the show and admonishes him for neglecting his five children by three different women or some Britney Spears type that parties every night and leaves her three young children to be raised by her single mother and 15-year-old brother and he lectures them about the harm they are doing to their children...he has to stop.

As a matter of fact, the deadbeat dad/deadbeat mom would be perfectly within their rights to say "Please, Montel Williams telling me about hurting kids? You let Sylvia Browne come here!".

That's right. Montel Williams has sunk so low, he has lost the moral high ground to gambling addicts and jailbirds.
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Old 19th June 2009, 01:45 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by EeneyMinnieMoe View Post
Tom Cruise has two failed marriages, is a high school dropout and was raised by a single mother but that says nothing about his involvement with Scientology.
No, but, then, he's also an actor. That DOES say a lot about his involvement with Scientology-especially HIS involvement, since it's an open secret that Scientology caters to Cruise. I'm not saying that all actors are ego driven, but I think it's fair to say that, with some, such as Cruise, there is a large ego involved, and a desire for high visibility and respect. Scientology fuels those traits, I believe. Even when he says something totally inane, Scientology still hails him as a wunderkind.

I don't think it can always be said that someone's personal life can be linked to their professional life, but, as with Tom Cruise, some links are glaringly apparent.
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Old 19th June 2009, 02:02 PM   #20
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I guess the distinction is between personal stuff that's relevant and personal stuff that is not relevant.

For instance, Heston's alcoholism was not in the slightest relevant to the position he held and no one's business but his own. However, Bush's long struggle with drink might have been relevant to his performance on the job and might have been a clue to his sudden involvement in religion in his middle age.

The same way, Tom Cruise's self admitted unhappy childhood and various minor personal troubles might be a clue to his interest in Scientology and his somewhat questionable behavior. Or maybe not.

Or maybe it's the other way around and his failed marriages and so on were the effect of CoS and not the cause.

Or maybe the two have nothing to do with one another and are completely unrelated.
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Old 20th June 2009, 03:03 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by EeneyMinnieMoe View Post
However, Bush's long struggle with drink might have been relevant to his performance on the job...
I'm not sure about a relationship between that and his overall job performance, but it certainly could be linked to his obdurance on certain issues.

Quote:
...and might have been a clue to his sudden involvement in religion in his middle age.
Quite possible. I've known several recovering alcoholics who embraced religion as a part of their "new lease on life" attitude.

Quote:
The same way, Tom Cruise's self admitted unhappy childhood and various minor personal troubles might be a clue to his interest in Scientology and his somewhat questionable behavior. Or maybe not.
Possibly. His childhood may have caused self esteem issues, hence a need to fuel his ego and desire for attention.

As another example, Priscilla Presley has said that she joined Scientology because she appreciates the rigid structure of the advancing levels, and that Scientology approaches faith from a scientific standpoint. (Debatable, but that's what she said.) Given that Presley is known for being a rather rigid control freak with herself (possibly a result of her Army brat childhood, and Elvis' less than rigid lifestyle), then that might indicate a link between her personal issues and her membership in CoS.

Quote:
Or maybe it's the other way around and his failed marriages and so on were the effect of CoS and not the cause.
Quite likely, since Mimi Rogers had been ostracized from CoS, and Nicole Kidman was openly beginning to distance herself from Scientology even before she and Cruise separated. It's not illogical that, if they were labeled "suppressive persons", CoS would have urged poster boy Cruise to detach himself from them. And, in the case of his first marriage, there would have been a double incentive to detach from SP Mimi, and connect with young, malleable Nicole.

Back to the thread topic, I'm not sure about the backgrounds of Williams and the other psychics, but I've read a little about Browne's. My impression has been that her childhood included some level of poverty. If she resented that, and, possibly, through that, experienced real or imagined ridicule, then I think it's not out of hand to speculate that that might have over stimulated her desire for wealth and recognition. Becoming a psychic was a fast track to gaining both. I have to say, though, that I have never gotten the impression, from anything I've read about Browne, that she has any real belief in her 'psychic ability'. She knows she's faking it, and she simply doesn't care, because the end has justified the means.

With Williams, what has always bothered me most is that I don't think he believes Browne's ability is real, either. But, again, the end has justified the means. Fairly mercenary, both of them.
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Old 21st June 2009, 09:01 PM   #22
EeneyMinnieMoe
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Actually, Browne says she has fond memories of her early life. Her father worked various odd jobs (he was a jewelry salesperson at one point) and her mother was a homemaker, if memory serves. She had a troubled relationship with her mother and was estranged from her up to the mother's death but she always adored her father and was close to her grandmother.

The impression one gets is that they weren't wealthy but got by alright- certainly made enough to send her to Catholic school and then to college. Also raised her younger sister.

She did marry a working class man (if memory serves, he worked as a police officer and a firefighter) at a fairly young age, though, and was unhappy with him (and allegedly had a lover during this marriage). And he admits he wasn't an ideal husband or father. And she was a housewife for a while and worked as a teacher for a while and wasn't very good at it, according to some of her former students.

Maybe that made her want fame and money. Or maybe that has nothing to do with it and she just wants fame and money.

Edit: Yes, she doesn't believe in her own abilities. Neither does Williams, it seems. She never has, though she is allegedly sincere about New Age religion.
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Old 7th December 2009, 09:03 PM   #23
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Here's another article about this:

Quote:
Erica Fraysure: Questions remain unanswered
By WENDY MITCHELL Staff Writer
The Ledge-Independent
Published: October 20, 2005 8:52 PM EDT


The door to Bracken County Sheriff Mike Nelson's office still displays posters seeking information on Erica Fraysure. Fraysure disappeared eight years ago today.
...
In 1998, Erica's mother, Maggie Miller spoke with psychic Sylvia Brown on the Montel Williams Show which led Kentucky officers to re-search the area of a private lake about 2 miles from where Erica's car was found. Divers searched the waters, but found nothing.

Officers maintain they are still looking at the case as that of a missing person.
...
Full: The Ledge-Independent
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Old 8th December 2009, 09:06 PM   #24
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#16
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This, too, is inexplicable. How do they live with themselves? I know they probably laugh all the way to the bank, but if there is a hell, they've each got a place in it.


This was posted by "Desertgal"...I am Shawn mother and you shouldn't post anything that you don't know the truth about. Craig and I have NEVER got paid for ANY of the interviews we did while Shawn was gone and since his return. All of the media outlets we used to keep Shawn's name and picture there we did from our hearts hoping that either Shawn himself or someone that knew something would come forward. All the interviews we did since his returns was to give other missing kids and their family HOPE that they to can come home. And for the record we DID NOT get paid for any of those either!!
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Old 8th December 2009, 09:40 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by pakers View Post
#16
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This, too, is inexplicable. How do they live with themselves? I know they probably laugh all the way to the bank, but if there is a hell, they've each got a place in it.


This was posted by "Desertgal"...I am Shawn mother and you shouldn't post anything that you don't know the truth about. Craig and I have NEVER got paid for ANY of the interviews we did while Shawn was gone and since his return. All of the media outlets we used to keep Shawn's name and picture there we did from our hearts hoping that either Shawn himself or someone that knew something would come forward. All the interviews we did since his returns was to give other missing kids and their family HOPE that they to can come home. And for the record we DID NOT get paid for any of those either!!

Ma'am, I believe you misunderstood me. My statement referred to John Edward and James Van Praagh.
Originally Posted by desertgal View Post
Originally Posted by EeneyMinnieMoe View Post
John Edward is also a father, of a 7-year-old and a 2-year-old. And that doesn't seem to stop him from exploiting grieving parents.

James Van Praagh has no children, as he is in a same sex marriage and apparently has never adopted. Still, he should be ashamed of himself for taking advantage of Shawn Hornbeck's mother and stepfather and probably many others.
This, too, is inexplicable. How do they live with themselves? I know they probably laugh all the way to the bank, but if there is a hell, they've each got a place in it.

In no way did I state that you and your husband were paid for any media interviews, or that your motivations are anything less than true and compassionate.

I apologize if my statement distressed you, as I intended no disrespect to you and your husband.
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Old 9th December 2009, 12:03 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by pakers View Post
#16
desertgal
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This, too, is inexplicable. How do they live with themselves? I know they probably laugh all the way to the bank, but if there is a hell, they've each got a place in it.
While I'm sure they do enjoy the trip to the bank very much, Browne, John Edward and Van Praagh also are very keen to tell their audience they give closure and make their clients feel good. It's a defense mechanism to avoid admitting they are bad people, but rather help those who are suffering by giving them answers.

So the end justifies the means in their world. Of course they lie and have little regard for their clients' lives, but enjoy being on the best seller lists and $800 phone calls. Cloaking the lies in help probably makes the trip to the bank easier.

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Old 9th December 2009, 02:00 AM   #27
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Welcome to the forum, Mrs. Hornbeck. Yes, we were talking about Sylvia Browne and all the unbelievable things she feels she can say to families of missing/murdered people.

For the past few years, I and Questioninggeller have been compiling all the cases where she has been proven wrong/useless as material for StopSylvia.com. It's been quite a project; you can view the list here:


http://www.internationalskeptics.com...d.php?t=152757


It breaks my heart to think of how many people she has victimized over the years. And these just the ones we know about! Only the ones that two people with an Internet connection and fair research skills and limited resources were able to find...
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Old 9th December 2009, 06:27 AM   #28
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desertgal,

Thank you for your reply...sorry I misunderstood you but I get tired of people saying things about my family when it isn't true. So many people seem to think that we got rich off of all the interview and we didn't. I have even had people say that we got 1 million from Oprah but we didn't. What we felt was we got free air time to show our son's name and picture out there nationally.

Regarding the other two, which I don't like to even say their names because it puts a bad taste in my mouth, I feel they are both a disgrace to human race. I did however when we were asked to speak to Mrs. S. that maybe, just maybe she would really know something. Boy was I wrong. As far as JVP you guys only got to see what they put on TV but I'm here to tell you some of the things he said to me and my husband was so hard to hear even though we didn't believe him. I feel that anyone that says they have this talent to not tell a grieving parent anything if they aren't 100% sure of themselves and I don't think any of them are.

Anyway thank you for your reply and all the welcomes.
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Old 9th December 2009, 07:10 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by ChristineR View Post
I'd never heard this. Am I the only one that hadn't heard the whole sordid story?

http://www.enquirer.com/editions/199...round_the.html
I still don't understand a key point. Sylvia mentioned the name "Chris," and the next day a guy named Christopher Mineer killed his girlfriend and himself.

What is the connection there, other than the name "Chris"? There were probably about a million Chrises in the US at that time, and all but one didn't kill himself that day.
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Old 9th December 2009, 08:51 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by CurtC View Post
I still don't understand a key point. Sylvia mentioned the name "Chris," and the next day a guy named Christopher Mineer killed his girlfriend and himself.

What is the connection there, other than the name "Chris"? There were probably about a million Chrises in the US at that time, and all but one didn't kill himself that day.
Chris Mineer was the missing girl's boyfriend, and police had already interviewed him (they then ruled him not a suspect).
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Old 9th December 2009, 03:02 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Questioninggeller
While I'm sure they do enjoy the trip to the bank very much, Browne, John Edward and Van Praagh also are very keen to tell their audience they give closure and make their clients feel good. It's a defense mechanism to avoid admitting they are bad people, but rather help those who are suffering by giving them answers.

So the end justifies the means in their world. Of course they lie and have little regard for their clients' lives, but enjoy being on the best seller lists and $800 phone calls. Cloaking the lies in help probably makes the trip to the bank easier.
Actually, my question was rhetorical, but I agree with you that this how they justify their behavior to themselves. I still find it nauseating, however.

Originally Posted by pakers View Post
desertgal,

Thank you for your reply...sorry I misunderstood you...
No problem.

Quote:
...but I get tired of people saying things about my family when it isn't true.
My sympathies...I can only imagine how frustrating and hurtful that must be.

Quote:
So many people seem to think that we got rich off of all the interview and we didn't. I have even had people say that we got 1 million from Oprah but we didn't. What we felt was we got free air time to show our son's name and picture out there nationally.
To be honest, I never really gave any thought as to whether you-or any of the other family members that we've seen scammed by Sylvia Browne and her ilk-received any financial compensation. I always presumed that your primary motivation was exactly what you say-to get the story out there, and that was explanation enough for me. As a mother, that would be my motivation, if I were in that situation. So I can understand your point of view in that regard, and how aggravating it must be to have people assume the worst.

Quote:
Regarding the other two, which I don't like to even say their names because it puts a bad taste in my mouth, I feel they are both a disgrace to human race. I did however when we were asked to speak to Mrs. S. that maybe, just maybe she would really know something. Boy was I wrong. As far as JVP you guys only got to see what they put on TV but I'm here to tell you some of the things he said to me and my husband was so hard to hear even though we didn't believe him. I feel that anyone that says they have this talent to not tell a grieving parent anything if they aren't 100% sure of themselves and I don't think any of them are.
(bolding mine) I think this is what most of us find so reprehensible about these 'psychics'.

For what it is worth, I was one of those parents around the nation and the world who rejoiced when your son was found and came home to you. I can only begin to fathom how difficult all of this has been for you, but you have my heartfelt compassion, and my respect for the effort you have made in helping other families in the same situation. I wish you and your family only the best, for now and for the future.
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Old 9th December 2009, 04:08 PM   #32
EeneyMinnieMoe
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Originally Posted by pakers View Post

Regarding the other two, which I don't like to even say their names because it puts a bad taste in my mouth, I feel they are both a disgrace to human race. I did however when we were asked to speak to Mrs. S. that maybe, just maybe she would really know something. Boy was I wrong. As far as JVP you guys only got to see what they put on TV but I'm here to tell you some of the things he said to me and my husband was so hard to hear even though we didn't believe him. I feel that anyone that says they have this talent to not tell a grieving parent anything if they aren't 100% sure of themselves and I don't think any of them are.

Anyway thank you for your reply and all the welcomes.

Agreed. These two make me...ashamed to be a member of the same species as they are.

I'm a little confused. So you somewhat believed in SB but not in John Van Praagh? Why was that? Or did you believe him when you first met him but not when he started "predicting"? Or did you only go on the show to gain media exposure?
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Old 9th December 2009, 06:12 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by pakers
I feel that anyone that says they have this talent to not tell a grieving parent anything if they aren't 100% sure of themselves and I don't think any of them are.

Anyway thank you for your reply and all the welcomes.
Ms. Akers: First, welcome to the forum. Your (unfortunate) first-hand experiences with these vultures (Browne, Edward, etc) makes yours an important voice in the discussion. I agree fully with your sentence I've quoted above.

My name is Robert S. Lancaster. I am the founder and creator of the Stop Sylvia Browne web site, which used to be at www.stopsylvia.com, but is now at www.StopSylvia.com.

It was my site which broke the news about Browne's involvement in your son's case, in this article: http://www.stopsylvia.com/articles/m...hornbeck.shtml. I am sorry if the additional media attention this put on you and your husband made your situation more difficult than it already was.

I hope you can take some satisfaction from knowing that it was Browne's total screwup with you on the Montel show which was the "last straw" for a lot of people, getting them to realize that she does not have the "abilities" that she claims to have.

If you or your husband have any comments about "psychics" which you would like to share with the world, or have any comments about the article I mention above, please feel free to email them to me at webmaster@StopSylviaBrowne.com.

In closing, I would like to say that I recently saw a TV program which profiled Shawn, showing how he was doing recently. I was very pleased to see how well Shawn seems to be doing. He seems to be a young man with his head on straight (amazing, given what he has been through). Congrats to you and your husband.
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Ever wonder "What's the Harm?" with psychics, alternative medicine, etc?
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Old 10th December 2009, 12:12 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by RSLancastr View Post
...
In closing, I would like to say that I recently saw a TV program which profiled Shawn, showing how he was doing recently. I was very pleased to see how well Shawn seems to be doing. He seems to be a young man with his head on straight (amazing, given what he has been through). Congrats to you and your husband.
Ditto. Shawn is an amazingly strong person, and we all wish the best to your family.
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Old 17th May 2010, 01:06 PM   #35
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Here's some more on the Linda Mineer v Montel Williams case. The following is part of the court ruling:

Quote:
LINDA MARIE MINEER, ETC., PLAINTIFF VS. MONTEL WILLIAMS, ET AL, DEFENDANTS

CIVIL ACTION NO. 99-187

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY, COVINGTON DIVISION

82 F. Supp. 2d 702; 2000 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 1264; 28 Media L. Rep. 1577


February 3, 2000, Decided
February 3, 2000, Filed

...

FACTS
In October of 1997, a seventeen-year-old woman, Erica Fraysure, disappeared on a Friday night in Brooksville, Kentucky. Due to the facts surrounding the case, foul play is suspected in her disappearance. As of today, she has not been located.

Nearly a year later, on September 24, 1998, the Montel Williams Show -- a national talk show -- featured the psychic Sylvia Browne. This psychic appeared on the show to use her abilities and powers to assist the show's guests in obtaining information regarding their loved ones who were either dead or missing. Erica Fraysure's mother, Maggie Doherty, was one of the guests. After a video segment regarding the background of Erica's disappearance, the psychic and Ms. Doherty exchanged questions and answers concerning Erica. The psychic identified Erica's murderer as a man who at the time of the show was in prison.

Thereafter, Ms. Doherty asked if anyone knew any information about the murder. The psychic answered affirmatively. In response to Ms. Doherty's question "What is this person's name?", the psychic said "Chris." Someone involved with the production of the Montel Williams Show made the decision to edit the sound so that the name of "Chris" could not be heard. However, according to plaintiffs anyone watching the show could discern that the name was "Chris" by watching a [**3] close-up of the psychic.

On September 25, 1998, plaintiff's son, Chris Mineer, shot and killed his girlfriend, Cameron Morehead, and then shot and killed himself. However, it is not alleged in the complaint that Chris had any knowledge of the September 24, 1998 Montel Williams Show.

A few months later, in January of 1999, Ms. Browne was again the featured guest of the Montel Williams Show. During the broadcast, Montel Williams and Ms. Browne implied that Chris Mineer was determined to be responsible for the disappearance and presumed death of Erica Fraysure. Montel Williams made the following comments to exemplify the telepathic powers of Ms. Browne:

Originally Posted by Montel Williams
He murdered his girlfriend and was implicated in the case that Sylvia talked about. So if you want to wonder whether or not this woman is talking fact or fiction, she gave up the name to this family during the break, and the next thing you know, the guy who probably committed the murder to begin with, realized the law is on my tail, he killed himself and his other girlfriend.

Ms. Browne responded, "That's what the lieutenant told me too."
On September 22, 1999, Mineer's mother filed this lawsuit against Montel Williams, Sylvia Browne, three producers and two corporate entities on behalf of herself and [*704] the estate of her deceased son. The complaint alleges the above facts and further that the lieutenant had made no statement that Chris Mineer was ever a suspect in the disappearance of Erica Fraysure and no such comment was made by any officer on the case.
...
IT IS ORDERED that the motion of defendants to dismiss be, and it is, hereby granted, and the complaint herein is hereby dismissed, with prejudice, at the cost of the plaintiff. A separate Judgment shall enter concurrently herewith.

This 3d day of February, 2000.

WILLIAM O. BERTELSMAN, JUDGE
...
Full ruling at Source

As of May 2010, Erica Fraysure's disappearance is unsolved. She went missing in October 21, 1997 and Browne gave a "psychic" reading on the disappearance in 1998.
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:27 PM   #36
Susan Gerbic
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Quote:
I feel that anyone that says they have this talent to not tell a grieving parent anything if they aren't 100% sure of themselves and I don't think any of them are.

Anyway thank you for your reply and all the welcomes.
WOW o WOW

Welcome to the JREF forum Mrs. Akers! I don't know how you found this forum but thank you for visiting and please continue to post. Your story and Sylvia's failure on Montel concerning Shawn is front page news in the skeptic community, and continues to be so even after all this time.

This forum is committed to discussing these vultures, many of us work to take them down so they can no longer hurt other families. We have also heard from "Kathy Caughlin/Unsolved Homicide Survivor/Victim of Psychic Predator" whose family was harmed (and continues to be harmed) by "psychic" Robbie Thomas. She has recently come out with her story to help stop the victimization (the second wave of predictors, the psychics.

Many of us in the skeptic community are working to bring these people down but we are constantly besieged by the apathetic who see no harm in psychics. They do not understand that behind every missing person there is a grieving and desperate family trying to bring their story to the attention of the public, willing to do anything to find an answer.

What you and the Caughlin families provide is a reminder that psychics do cause harm, and it is disgusting that psychics will use your grief and desperation to further their careers. The skeptic community needs you, we need to know that what we are doing will help. Robert Lancaster at www.stopsylvia.com who addressed you above is a wonderful caring man, everyone in the skeptic community respects his work as fair and well thought out (not like my rambling writing). And allowing him to interview you would be a great help to fighting this scum. I hope you will consider adding your voice to our desperately needed fight.

I understand that you did not seek out this attention, and may have no interest in our community. I respect that, and I respect you and your family. Please know that those of us that are fighting against these vermin do so with the knowledge that our battle is an unpopular one, but we are doing this so other families will not have to be re-victimized by psychic scum.

Thank you for visiting our forum. I hope you will continue the dialog.

Susan
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Old 17th May 2010, 09:36 PM   #37
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Ok, just got really distracted by our newest member, WOW.

What I meant to post was that I am confused about this thread in the first place. From what I heard this case was overturned by the courts. I don't see in the article if that is discussed.

Can I just write what I think happened and if someone can set me straight I would appreciate it?

Erica is missing. Mother goes on Montel to talk to SB. SB already knows the story in advance right? So SB could have known that Erica had a boyfriend named Chris, okay?

Then

Mother is told that someone in prison is guilty for killing Erica and her body is in water. SB also tells her that "Chris" knows something about the murder.

So Then

The day after this is told to the mother, the actual boyfriend Chris shoots his new girlfriend and himself. The show had not been broadcast yet, but Chris could have been told what SB said by Erica's mother?

Then Chris's mother sues Montel and friends because she feels her son's character is defamed (he just murdered his girlfriend). The judge throws out the case because of...? She decides not to try again because....?

Montel on a re-released show says that Chris was guilty all along, the evidence is that Chris killed his new girlfriend.

So do I have this story straight? Please correct me because I get confused easily.
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Old 17th May 2010, 10:33 PM   #38
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Ultimately, the lawsuit was dismissed by a Judge who ruled Browne and Williams did not invade the privacy by saying something bad about Chris Mineer, whose mother sued on his estate's behalf.

Order of events
1) October 21, 1997
Erica Fraysure goes missing.
2) Following the disappearance
Police investigate leads and clear people, including Fraysure's boyfriend Chris Mineer, who has a solid alibi.
3) September 24, 1998
Maggie Doherty (Erica Fraysure's mother) appears with Sylvia Browne on the Montel Williams Show. Browne says "Chris" did it and Erica was in water.
5) The next day: September 25, 1998
Chris Mineer killed himself.
6) January 1999
Montel Williams commented on the case that Chris Mineer was:
Originally Posted by Montel Williams in January 1999
implicated in the case that Sylvia talked about. So if you want to wonder whether or not this woman is talking fact or fiction, she gave up the name to this family during the break, and the next thing you know, the guy who probably committed the murder to begin with, realized the law is on my tail, he killed himself and his other girlfriend.
In response, Browne said:
Originally Posted by Sylvia Browne in January 1999
That's what the lieutenant told me too.
7) Shortly after
Linda Mineer heard about this and contacted law enforcement who denied Montel and Browne's claims. In fact, "the lieutenant had made no statement that Chris Mineer was ever a suspect in the disappearance of Erica Fraysure and no such comment was made by any officer on the case."
8) September 1999
Linda Mineer files a lawsuit against Montel, Browne, and their companies claiming Chris Mineer was "cast . . . in an unfavorable light."
9) February 3, 2000
A judge dismisses the case.
10) Shortly after
Linda Mineer drops the lawsuit from further court challenges.

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Old 18th May 2010, 12:36 AM   #39
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OK. I’m not an attorney but here’s my take on the Linda Mineer suit.

First. None of this has anything really to do with Sylvia’s prowess as a psychic. Even Montel’s ill-advised comments a year later are only significant (to Linda Mineer’s failed lawsuit) in as much that they perpetuated an unproven accusation on national television. How the information in question was acquired is really not the issue. Another weird angle on this is that, unless we accept that Sylvia is really psychic, it could be argued that her false accusation of an innocent man drove him to murder and suicide. Innocent man sees police closing in and decides to take his own life. I’m not saying it’s true but it’s possible this is what Linda Mineer actually believes. Either that or she is trying to profit somehow from her son’s death. So the whole thing is sad and tragic above-and-beyond the glimpse it offers of Sylvia and Montel’s exploitation skills.

Regarding Sylvia’s appearance on Montel’s show on Sept 24th, it's difficult to reconstruct much about how/why Sylvia said "Chris" at all. Did she know about the case in advance? Probably. Did Sylvia know that Erica had a boyfriend who had (as would be SOP in a case like this) been interviewed by the police? Probably. In which case Sylvia was simply feeding back information in a typical, if reckless, fashion. And it's not clear (to me) whether Sylvia was simply saying "Chris knows more..." or that Chris was the murderer. Either comment would be potentially slanderous, since she was implying that Chris was withholding information from the police and/or possibly even the murderer.

What’s not clear and not really provable is that Chris Mineer's suicide had anything to do with Sylvia’s comment. Montel's show is certainly not “live”. I’ll bet they tape two or three shows per shoot day, then break them up and air them over next month. If I’m correct about that it was easily a week between Chris’s death and the airing of the show. Whether or not Chris knew what Sylvia had said about him, the producers themselves certainly realized it was a problem as evidenced by the fact that they DID attempt to "bleep" it. But it’s impossible to know if they would have bleeped it if Chris had not also killed himself in the interim. So if Chris did hear what Sylvia said it would have been via word of mouth from someone who was at the taping, as the air date is really immaterial.

It’s important to remember that Linda Mineer’s lawsuit was for “invasion of privacy”, NOT libel or slander. She filed that way, I reckon, because her attorney knew that libel of a deceased person is absurd and not arguable. Perhaps they were going to argue that Chris was driven to suicide by the “invasion of privacy”. That said, unless it’s Linda Mineer’s privacy being invaded, I’m not sure there was much of a case to be argued here and I suspect they were hoping to force an out of court cash settlement. The judge wrote, “Since the cause of action for invasion of privacy does not survive after death and the requisite elements for intentional infliction of emotional distress are absent, the motion must be granted and the complaint dismissed.”

But in the court of public opinion, I think there’s a case to be made that Montel is a liar and opportunistic scumbag. Montel was certainly implying that:
a) Police think Chris Mineer was the murderer all along
b) Chris’s suicide was the result of a guilty conscious/fear of imminent arrest
c) Sylvia’s “outing” was instrumental in Chris’s decision
d) Sylvia got that information supernaturally.

So in attempting to brag about what a great psychic Sylvia is, Montel was making some rather slanderous statements on national TV. Luckily (legally if not ethically) he was slandering a person who was dead and couldn’t defend themselves. Montel felt justified in saying these things because Chris Mineer was capable of murder, having killed his girlfriend before taking his own life and that part had been proven.
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Old 18th May 2010, 08:04 AM   #40
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Quote:
But in the court of public opinion, I think there’s a case to be made that Montel is a liar and opportunistic scumbag. Montel was certainly implying that:
a) Police think Chris Mineer was the murderer all along
b) Chris’s suicide was the result of a guilty conscious/fear of imminent arrest
c) Sylvia’s “outing” was instrumental in Chris’s decision
d) Sylvia got that information supernaturally.
Thank you for putting some order into this. It is much clearer now.

I don't understand why Sylvia (and fans) don't take this as a win for her. It sounds very much like Chris who the police cleared with an air-tight alibi did not do the murder, but Sylvia is saying that Chris knew who was responsible. Which because of his later actions with the murder of his girlfriend show he had it in him to commit murder of a girlfriend. Sounds like Sylvia got one right.

With that said, generally in most murders the victim knows her murderer, and a lot of time it is a boyfriend/husband/spurned co-worker that does the deed. If Sylvia did know Erica's boyfriend was named Chris (I'm sure she knew the details of the case before hand) she just popped out with that. It was not a good idea for her to do so, but I can just see her justifying it with "I didn't say the boyfriend, I said Chris and there are a lot of people named Chris even women that could relate to". She might have been correct, but had no idea that the guy would go out and kill himself and his current girlfriend. Oops!

Wonder how the police were able to pin down the time of Erica's abduction so closely that Chris would have had an alibi? They never found her so they don't know what time she was murdered. Chris could have been in it with someone else? What else do we know of the case?

Anyway, from what you have been saying, I don't see how the mother could sue them either. Too bad because I would love to see them both in court.
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