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Strange Cases

July 17, 2012

The Strange Case of Adelheid Streidel

Here’s the Strange Case of Adelheid Streidel. This is the story of another Psychological Torture victim whose tale smacks of political assassination. This victim’s life was used to justify tighter security.

Sought Publicity, Says Woman Who Stabbed German Candidate – “Social Democrat Lafontaine is recovering, vows to carry on his campaign to unseat Kohl.” by Tamara Jones (Los Angeles Times April 27, 1990 A6) – Cologne, West Germany – A woman who calmly plunged a butcher knife into the throat of one of West Germany’s most popular politicians told police Thursday that she did it for the publicity. Recovering from a wound that narrowly missed a major artery, a weak but cheerful Oskar Lafontaine told Social Democratic Party leaders from his hospital bed that he will carry on his campaign to unseat conservative Chancellor Helmut Kohl despite Wednesday night’s assassination attempt at a packed rally here. Adelheid Streidel, a 42-year-old doctor’s assistant with a history of mental illness, was arrested at the scene. Police said she was transferred to a psychiatric clinic Thursday for evaluation. Prosecutors were awaiting results of her psychiatric evaluation before deciding whether to press charges. “I wanted to kill Mr. Lafontaine so I would have to go before the courts and it would be in all the newspapers,” investigators quoted her as saying. Police spokesman Reinhard Fischer said the woman described the attack as “a private political decision.” “I wanted to send a message,” he quoted her as telling interrogators. “There are human factories and underground operating rooms in Europe where citizens are reconstructed physically and mentally. “This takes place with the approval of politicians.” Police said Streidel had no known links to terrorist groups. Investigators said she had decided last Christmas to kill a politician and that she had called Kohl’s Christian Democratic Party as well as the Social Democrats to find out when and where prominent politicians would be holding public rallies.

On Wednesday, clutching two bouquets of flowers, she took a cab to the rally where Lafontaine was appearing, reportedly asking the driver en route if he knew the address of Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher. Once at the rally, Streidel sat in the second row. Television cameras scanning the audience showed her smiling broadly with a calm expression on her face. Police said she tried a couple of times without success to make it past ushers up to the stage after the speeches, then finally persuaded a guard she merely wanted to present the politicians with the flowers and get autographs. “I would like to give you some flowers because I am such a great admirer of yours,” she was quoted as telling Lafontaine. She held out a poetry book and asked for Lafontaine’s autograph; as he bent to sign it, she pulled out a butcher knife and plunged it into his neck, police said. Lafonlaine, 46, collapsed in a pool of blood as pandemonium broke out and security guards overpowered the still-smiling assailant. The attack, one of the worst on a West German politician in the postwar era, has raised serious questions about campaign security. Lafontaine, known for his acid tongue and brash style, apparently was singled out only at the last minute. Police said Streidel told investigators that she wanted to kill either Lafontaine or another party leader sharing the stage, Johannes Rau, premier of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Herbert Schnoor, the Social Democratic interior minister for North Rhine-Westphalia, said security at the Cologne hall was more than adequate. He told reporters that bomb searches had been conducted. Police reported no threats against the politicians. Social Democratic Party Chairman Hans-Jochen Vogel said after visiting Lafontaine in the hospital that the candidate was in good spirits. He said Lafontaine cracked jokes and vowed to hit the campaign trail again as soon as his health permits. Doctors said Lafontaine might be discharged from the hospital this weekend and would undergo further treatment at a clinic closer to his home in the state of Saarland.

The Strange Case of Adelheid Streidel
The Strange Case of James Brady

Here’s the Strange Case of James Brady. No…not that James Brady. Another James Brady. This is the story of a Psychological Torture victim whose name is, coincidentally, the same as that of the other James Brady. This James Brady’s life was also, not so coincidentally, used to justify gun control. The James Brady you’re thinking of was shot in the Ronald Reagan assassination attempt. John Hinkley, Jr., good buddy of George Bush and family, after having been released from a Federal Mental Institution and, reportedly, being photographed at a Nazi rally with one of the Bush boys, shot that James Brady.

This James Brady was another kind of victim: Just-released mental patient kills 1, wounds 4 in mall (Associated Press – Daily News (Los Angeles) April 25, 1990 p12) – Atlanta – A smiling gunman who was released from a mental hospital despite homicidal and suicidal tendencies opened fire in the food court of a suburban shopping mall Tuesday, killing one man and wounding four people, police said. The man tried to reload the .38 caliber revolver but tossed it into a trash can before calmly walking out and surrendering, police said. James Calvin Brady, 31, surrendered to DeKalb County police outside the mall just after the shootings, said police spokesman Chuck Johnson. “He held up his hands and said, ‘I’m the one you’re looking for,'” said police Col. M.F. Ferguson. Police said Brady was charged Tuesday night with one count of murder and four counts of aggravated assault. He was being held without bond, and other charges may be filed. A document found in Brady’s pocket said he was released Monday from Georgia Regional Hospital in Atlanta. He was admitted to the state hospital April 13, but the document did not say why he was released, said DeKalb police Col. M.F. Ferguson. The document “said he had homicidal and suicidal tendencies, and suffered from delusions,” Ferguson said. During questioning, police said Brady talked of God and about a “mechanical device” inside him that controls his actions. “He’s suffering from hallucinations. He was probably having one when he fired,” Ferguson said. Note the “‘mechanical device’ inside him that controls his actions.” Now, the Los Angeles Times spin on the same story:

Shooting Stirs a Furor Over Policies in Georgia (by Lee May and Edith Stanley, Los Angeles Times April 26, 1990 A21) – Atlanta – A shooting spree by a former mental patient in which one person was killed and four wounded touched off a furor Wednesday in Georgia over mental health policy and gun control. James Calvin Brady, the suspect in the Tuesday shootings at a suburban shopping mall, had in his pocket a form saying he was released Monday from a state mental hospital where he was treated for showing homicidal tendencies. The question of why he was released after only 10 days of treatment reverberated on radio talk shows, in the subway and on the streets Wednesday. State officials say they were only following criteria for such releases. “There are fairly rigid constraints” on holding patients against their will, said John Watson, deputy superintendent of the Georgia Regional Hospital, where Brady was held. Overcrowding was not a problem at the hospital, officials said, implying that Brady was released because he was judged to be no longer a threat to himself or others. Brady was back in a state mental institution Wednesday, after De Kalb County jail officials determined they could not care for him properly. He was taken to Central State Hospital in Milledgeville, Ga., for evaluation. Authorities said they still expect him to stand trial in the shootings. Jim Ledbetter, commissioner of the state Department of Human Resources, said Georgia’s eight mental hospitals treat 20,000 patients a year, almost 80% of whom are involuntary patients like Brady. He said the shooting was the first such incident he recalls involving a former mental patient.

Nevertheless, he said, a routine investigation will be conducted to make sure the release was made “in accordance with established medical practice.” Brady bought a handgun just hours after his release from the hospital, renewing the debate in Georgia over handgun control. To purchase the weapon, Brady merely had to show a driver’s license and sign a form declaring, among other assertions, that he was not mentally ill. There is no waiting period on gun purchases in Georgia. Gov. Joe Frank Harris conceded that the shootings make “a very strong statement” about the need for gun control, but he asserted: “I’m not sure any gun control law could prevent something like this happening.” Brady is black, repeatedly identified in television reports as “a well-dressed black man.” “He only shot white people,” said one of many angry callers to a local radio talk show Wednesday. Hospital and De Kalb County police officials said all the victims were white, but police made no racial links in the shootings. If anyone knows how to contact this victim’s lawyer, drop me a line.

Source: The Strange Case of James Brady

The Strange Case of Ardith Cribbs

Those of you who collect information on the government’s psychiatric torture research can make copies of related reports and forward them directly to Ms. Cribbs’ attorney. Those of you who have an interest in bringing the real government criminals to justice can write letters in support of her appeal. Let’s see if we can get this other victim the intensive medical treatment that she needs. It does not matter that Cribbs’ attorney will receive duplicate copies of various documents …. bulk counts. It does not matter that you can’t send any documents…your voice counts. It’s time to break the silence.

Woman to Serve 30 Years to Life for Brutal Killing of Husband in 1994 by Anna Cekola (Times Staff Writer Los Angeles Times March 30, 1996 A-21) – Santa Ana – A woman convicted of handcuffing her fourth husband to a bed and shooting him was sentenced Friday to 30 years to life in prison as relatives of the slain Fish and Game official pleaded that she never have a chance to hurt another family. Ardith Cribbs, 39, appeared shaken at times as the family of Gordon Cribbs said they were horrified and haunted by thoughts of his final, helpless moments as the woman he loved shot him in the legs, groin, back and head. “No doubt he pleaded for mercy, but what mercy did he receive? None,” said Harold Cribbs, the victim’s eldest brother. “She was just so evil,” sobbed the victim’s daughter, Kendra. “She’ll never know how many lives she affected, and how terribly she did it.” Superior Court Judge Francisco P. Briseno, in handing down the maximum sentence, called the 1994 murder “brutal” and “completely unwarranted.” Ardith Cribbs, a former prostitute with a history of mental problems, pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but a jury last month rejected that defense and decided the Huntington Beach woman was sane when she killed her husband. The same jury also convicted her of first-degree murder. Cribbs did not say anything to the judge Friday, but she recently told probation officials she never intended to kill her husband and believes she must have been insane to carry out such an act.

She also said that she was angry her husband, a 49-year-old patrol chief for the state Department of Fish and Game, had been portrayed as perfect during the trial, according to a pre-sentencing report by the county Probation Department. Family members said they are perhaps most troubled by prosecution evidence that she never loved her husband and wanted him dead. “We took her into our family,” Harold Cribbs said. “All this was shattered as I sat here in this courtroom and listened to the evidence presented. We found she was a cold, calculating, unprincipled individual who had no trouble Iying to get where she needed to go.” Harold Cribbs, a former Fish and Game official like his brother, said he hasn’t been able to tell his 82-year-old mother just how her son died. “If she knew exactly how it happened, it would kill her,” he said. Gordon Cribbs was found dead Aug. 10, 1994, in the Huntington Beach home he shared with his wife of three years. Two acquaintances who found his body also found Ardith Cribbs unconscious in a bathroom from a drug overdose. Police found the gun used in the shooting on a kitchen counter, along with an apparent suicide note written by Ardith Cribbs in which she apologized and asked for forgiveness. Deputy Dist. Atty. Carolyn Kirkwood contended during trial that Cribbs might have mental problems, but knew what she was doing when she repeatedly shot her husband. The prosecutor said a mixture of anger and greed may have motivated Cribbs, who stood to inherit her husband’s home.

The defendant said she could not remember specifically what caused her to shoot her husband, although she thought it might have had something to do with a remark he made about her past, according to the probation report. Cribbs, who grew up in San Pedro, worked as a prostitute at two Nevada brothels before finding a job with the Long Beach personnel division of the Department of Fish and Game, where she told a co-worker she was looking for a “single, successful, high-ranking man,” the prosecutor told jurors. It was there she met Gordon Cribbs, a 26-year veteran with the department who had been devastated a few years earlier when his marriage of 22 years ended in divorce, according to testimony. Gordon Cribbs, described as a dedicated worker who saw the best in others, supervised about 100 wardens and other personnel and was responsible for marine and wildlife protection from Santa Barbara to the Mexico border and the Sierra Nevada. The two dated for several years, then broke up for a year. They reunited and were married on the same day in June 1991, according to the probation report. During the trial, Cribbs’ lawyer sought to portray her as a woman who was not in control of her actions, with a past of attempted suicides, self-mutilation and hospitalization for hallucinations and other mental problems. She had also been molested by a relative from ages 6 to 16 and suffered from sleeping and eating disorders, her attorney, Peter Larkin, told jurors. Her mental problems included delusions that other people, including her husband, were constantly watching and controlling her, he said. Cribbs told others that while working at the brothel, she had been drugged and a device had been implanted in her brain, the report said. Her attorney gave notice Friday that Cribbs intends to appeal the conviction.

Source: The Strange Case of Ardith Cribbs

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