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Finding your way after leaving the cult of Scientology

The Village Voice is live blogging the Debbie Cook hearing in San Antonio

Scientology, Deep in the Heart of Texas: The Voice at the Debbie Cook Hearing

The Voice is on the scene this morning in San Antonio, and we’ll be doing our best to bring you updates throughout the day.
First update: 6:15 am, CST The district judges of Bexar County take turns presiding — this week it’s Judge Karen H. Pozza, and it will be her decision who will handle today’s matter. Will she give it to Judge Janet P. Littlejohn, who handled last week’s motion to dissolve the temporary restraining order (she denied it), or give it to someone else? Pozza could even keep it for herself. Put yourself in her place — do you hear this case or give it to someone else? Finding out Pozza’s decision will likely be our first matter of business.

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This hearing is being attended by Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder and is being reported by Tom Tobin and Joe Childs of the Tampa Bay Tribune as well as Tony Ortega of the Village Voice.

It should be an interesting day!

Another snippet from the live blogging:

Judge Tanner’s bench is decorated with the following signs…

“The witch is in”

“Yes I’m a witch, deal with it”

And “Thou shalt not whine”

Three television cameras showed up. They’re setting up one to serve as a pool feed.

Debbie Cook gets ready for her testimony to continue after the lunch break

 

Debbie Cook gets ready for her testimony to continue after the lunch break.

You can follow the action at http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2012/02/scientology_dee.php

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​8:30 am. The Bexar County Courthouse is a lovely old historic building. Looks like Judge Pozza is about to start with today’s docket.

Bonus reason to be in San Antonio…

 

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​Now I’m feeling chingon. Let’s get it on.

8:49 am. Ray Jeffrey just entered Judge Pozza’s court with his two assistants. We’re waiting now for her to get to the Cook case. She’s got a line of attorneys at the bench, waiting to learn what court they’ll be in today.

8:55 am. In walk Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder. They clean up well.

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9:09 am. Pozza now reading the docket. Just met Joe Childs. Hot damn.

9:30 am. It’s Judge Martha Tanner. We’re headed for the 4th floor.

Rathbun: “They moved to exclude the media. She told them to shove it.”

Judge Tanner’s bench is decorated with the following signs…

“The witch is in”

“Yes I’m a witch, deal with it”

And

“Thou shalt not whine”

Three television cameras showed up. They’re setting up one to serve as a pool feed.

Tom Tobin just introduced himself to me. What a hell of a thing.

Debbie Cook and Wayne Baumgarten are now at the table with their attorney Ray Jeffrey and his two assistants. On the other side, the church appears to have five attorneys.

George Spencer giving his opening statement.

Scientology’s attorney, Spencer, tried to get the judge to scuttle Jeffrey’s opening statement because it would violate the agreements! She said no. Now Jeffrey is up.

Jeffrey: “Ms. Cook was beaten. She was tortured. She was degraded beyond belief. She was made to watch the torture and beatings and degradation of others. And not just one or two. She was confined in inhuman conditions…they signed this agreement just to get away.”

11:00 am. Jeffrey wrapping up his lengthy, impassioned opening statement (he got emotional at one point when he described Wayne Baumgarten wanting to not rock the boat with the church so he could continue to talk to his sons and father, who are church members). Scientology had wanted Judge Tanner to keep Jeffrey under constraints, but she hasn’t interrupted him once.

Jeffrey finishing up by raising the issue of the church doing the exact opposite in Florida, where they want a court to butt out when it comes to contracts with members. Apparently, Jeffrey did word clear “estoppel.” Recess.

Rinder and Rathbun have been excluded from the room because they will be witnesses.

Spencer calls Debbie Cook to the stand.

Debbie Cook gets ready for her testimony to continue after the lunch break

Number of views:72522

2 Comments

just_me  on February 9th, 2012

Twitter feed of events are here also…\

https://twitter.com/#!/MikeBoard1200

aida thomas  on February 11th, 2012

Thanks for the update 🙂

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