People ask me all the time when someone in the government is going to do something about Scientology’s fraud and abuse. I have pretty much given up hope that politicians or the courts will tackle Scientology head-on but the recent deaths at Narconon facilities in the U.S. have drawn attention to at least one aspect of Scientology’s deceptive reach into the mainstream. Another family has filed a lawsuit against Narconon after their son died of a heroin overdose at a Georgia facility.
Jodie Fleischer of WSB TV covered the death of Patrick Desmond:
Patrick Desmond’s mother describes him as kind-hearted and good-natured, but the former Marine died at 28-years-old, losing a battle against alcoholism.
Desmond’s death in 2008 came as he took part in a worldwide drug treatment program, Narconon, already under fire for other patient deaths and ties to the Church of Scientology.
Now a Channel 2 investigation is raising questions about the Narconon program and its license in Georgia.
Desmond told Channel 2 investigative reporter Jodie Fleischer they found Narconon of Georgia on the Internet. Colleen Desmond toured the classrooms in Norcross and visited the apartments at One Sovereign Place off Roswell Road.
“We were assured all along the line, this was an inpatient situation,” Desmond said. Desmond said she had spoken to Mary Rieser, executive director of Narconon of Georgia.
Patients were supposed to be monitored 24 hours a day while learning communication skills, spending hours detoxing in a sauna, and taking mega doses of the vitamin niacin, Desmond said.
The treatment plan was espoused by Church of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.
Desmond told Fleischer that at the time, she didn’t know anything about that plan, or that her son Patrick was drinking and doing drugs with students and staff in those apartments.
Then she got a devastating phone call.
“The doctor said his alcohol content was very high. Patrick experimented that night for the first time with heroin,” Desmond said. “I held him in his bed. Then the doctor came in and turned off the machines.”
Narconon’s executive director said she can’t talk about Patrick Desmond’s case because his family is suing her program after learning it is only licensed for outpatient treatment.
“There’s things that people do to themselves,” Rieser explained to Fleischer. “Of course it’s sad. I can only try to guide the way for someone.”
“I will never knowingly accept somebody here if I know they’ve been ordered inpatient because we’re not,” Rieser said.
Watch the full video report on WSB TV’s website. In the report, Scientology continues their long tradition of lying to the press and lying to the people they are trying to con into their program. Their sister radio station is doing a spectacular series on this story as well. You can hear their reports here.
Many thanks to Tony Ortega for leading XENU TV to this story.