We interrupt our regular programming for this Ashton O’Dwyer update

Brought to you by the New Orleans area US Attorney’s office:

Our business clinks and its picking up

We have two new Team AROD filings to note, the first an unopposed motion to extend the pretrial motions deadline until March 12. The second filing is more noteworthy. Team O’Dwyer has filed a motion in opposition to transferring Ashton to a federal facility to have him mentally evaluated.  We reported on the government’s motion here. In that post I opined:

I don’t know what kind of read that transcript of the 2/1/10 hearing is but it may be a doozie knowing Ashton.

It evidently was but Ashton’s public defender brought in some reinforcements in Ashton’s Doc, Wallace Jeanfreau who testified at the February 12th hearing:

…….the behavior demonstrated by Mr. O’Dwyer during the February 1st hearing was indicative of an individual who was undergoing withdraw from Paxil.

Our readers will recall I immediately zeroed in on the fact something was not right in one of my first posts on this topic shortly after he was arrested.

Those wanting to see some of the behind the scenes O’Dwyer missives to which we have been privy can click here to see the criminal complaint. It was the email that got him arrested that confirmed my long held suspicion that Ashton had problems with bipolar disorder:

Also convey to Judge Brown a reminder that I have been totally without money since the weekend of January 8, 9 and 10, and that I have been without my anti-depressant medication, for which I have sought leave to pay Walgreen’s from my most recent Social Security check, since last weekend. I could not sleep last night, which I attribute to the effects of abruptly stopping my medication on Sunday….

Evidently even after he was arrested Ashton did not get his medication, at least early on. Public defender Cynthia Cimino noted that fact in a footnote to her motion in opposition which mentioned the email that got him arrested. I did some quick googling and found a website that lists the withdrawal symptoms associated with Paxil:

  • intense insomnia
  • extraordinarily vivid dreams
  • extreme confusion during waking hours
  • intense fear of losing your sanity
  • steady feeling of existing outside of reality as you know it (referred to as depersonalization at times)
  • memory and concentration problems
  • Panic Attacks (even if you never had one before)
  • severe mood swings, esp. heightened irritability / anger
  • suicidal thoughts (in extreme cases)
  • an unconventional dizziness/ vertigo
  • the feeling of shocks, similar to mild electric one, running the length of your body
  • an unsteady gait
  • slurred speech
  • headaches
  • profuse sweating, esp. at night
  • muscle cramps
  • blurred vision
  • breaking out in tears.
  • hypersensitivity to motion, sounds, smells.
  • decreased appetite
  • nausea
  • abdominal cramping, diarrhea
  • loss of appetite
  • chills/ hot flashes

Could it be that cutting the man’s access to his meds made Ashton’s already erratic behavior worse at that hearing? You betcha it did. I still think Ashton has problems that go beyond depression but the treatment for those is found in a properly equipped hospital not the local jail house. Our readers can find Team O’Dwyer’s motion to extend here and his Motion in Opposition to the mental health exam here.


9 thoughts on “We interrupt our regular programming for this Ashton O’Dwyer update”

  1. Sock, I really like your comments. I even recall when Ashton misspelled your handle by replacing the o, with an i. I really like this thing you and he have going on on a picking and mature manner. Still in Ashton’s defense I’d like to say this.

    Anytime you suffer a great loss and know for a fact that as a country of laws you are entitled to some form of rightous action to redress. But instead face the full force of courruption of your state and federal government. Control of your own actions is something you’d better have. I know what Mr. Ashton is going through. I’m even sure he would say diffrent. Simply for speaking out against wrongful acts others reacted, again causing his reactions. Please believe me when I say these corrupted forces are all powerful and opperate well out of the leagle system. We were put through hell and its still rolling on. I veiw all these out of court wrongs more in a manner of civil war. Not the race thing but a war on civil right. Even if one has a limit. When any one allows others to control their behaviour by precived reactions, their opponents battle is half way won. I hope he regroups his mojo and dances with the powers that be.

    assholery, now thats funny!

  2. I hear you Robert. I’ve been there with NOPD myself. I certainly don’t wish O’Dwyer any ill will, and I hope he gets properly medicated and puts all of this behind him. And I don’t want it to seem as if I’m kicking the guy while he’s down.

    But, as I’ve written before, O’Dwyer is more a victim of his own doing than anything else. He spent most of his life as an uptown lawyer in a downtown law firm doing corporate/insurance defense work, and he would not know the plight of the downtrodden if it bit him. As I understand it, he had very little to no damage to his home or office from Katrina. He was the victim of his own assholery, and probably some mental illness. The people on the Danziger bridge and their families are real victims of Katrina and the NOPD. Some people are victims, some people play victim, and often times, the real victims never see themselves as such.

  3. Sock, would you believe that while Ashton was an uptown lawyer in a downtown lawfirm doing corporate/insurance defense work that you discribed. He was on the side of corruption his work was connected to our claims. He and many attorneys of his kind at that time were brought from everywhere to create fraudlent claims as part of a cover up of the actually events. In fact he and many others collected disburstments after a jury trial here in Mississippi failed to prove injuries to anyone other than my family.

    Our awards included an $84 million dollar offer of Vicksburg Chemical and the total amounts had included by remaining defendants at trial we know of a total of $ 276 million with documents seeking $2 billion. Countless reclusals and denials our are presently being held by a Hinds County judge. The court has felt it proper to file phoney actions to mask the actions to extort. Extort as in, well its along story. Thing is posting the documents of corruption along with the pro’se cause and even reporting has produced nothing. The plot and ploy has remained. Our action will be completed after our death and is intended to exclude us. Now thats what I call sick puppies. If you haven’t seen them[da doc’s] its all kinda sick. hppt://www.mftms13.wordpress.com

    1. Robert what I’m finding is the desire to see a level playing field cuts across the legal profession. The criticism I hear most often of AROD is that he was fine with the status quo until the system cut him out. I don’t think he was shooting for a larger good, though we certainly hope his plight illustrates the need for justice for all, even for those formerly on the in. Simply put Ashton cared only for himself and was in it only for himself. From my standpoint his brand of suffering was not special in any way shape or form. Believe me when I say that statement comes from personal experience.

      Think of it this way, when I highlighted the book that contained Ashton’s story, The Great New Orleans Gun Grab, in the context of the unprovoked NOPD shooting of Keenon McCann Ashton could not comment on the post which highlighted the book that contained his story. I wrote that post from that standpoint to confirm what I was being told and his silence speaks for itself.

      We cover Ashton’s plight because we truly believe in justice for all, not the current system of just-us.


  4. I think people are forgetting where all of these problems that AROD is having are stemming from. After Katrina he filed a suite the very next day he was removed from his home beaten, pepper sprayed and shot with bean bags out of a 12 gage shotgun countless times. AROD has brought the pictures from being abused, filed complaints and he has heard NOTHING back from the “Orleans” parish system. I am not a huge fan of his but he is trying to be heard by someone. Instead he is being pushed aside and shut up because there are officials in our city who are trying to take the attention off the real problems rather then the ones that are right in front of us. Our city needs HELP and fast. We have murders, rapists and hard core criminals walking the streets and they are worried about someone who uses metaphors and language that is part of our freedom of speech its just beyond people in this closed minded corrupt city who “think” he is a threat when in reality he could be one of the best things that has happened to New Orleans in a long time. He loves this city and just wants to see right by it! He was hurt by something he has believed in his whole life they system. Give them man a fair trial on being beat for NO reason and let him do what he does best…..Live in a city he loves and practice law 🙂

  5. P.S. Heard AROD was home. Hope he gets the help he needs and show’s everyone who has done wrong by him through the leagal system a thing or two!

  6. We’re glad he is out. We’ll sweep PACER Lauren and update the post.

    We profiled Ashton’s plight here. Perhaps now that he is out he won’t resume being his own worst enemy. If can be civil to my partner Nowdy and refrain from using racial ephitets we’ll clear any comment that does not bear on his criminal prosecution. Certainly he’d be interested in our Jefferson Parish coverage.


  7. The docket shows a hearing set for today but makes no mention of the outcome, Sop. If he’s home, then obviously his motion for alternative confinement was granted – and, if it was granted, it’s because he has a daughter who stepped up and assured the court he would not be home alone. Even with all things considered, that makes him a mighty lucky man.

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