julian metter Archive

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Jury awards $16.5 million in lawsuit over false memories

A jury in State College, PA awarded $16.5 million Thursday to a woman who said she was drugged with carbon dioxide and manipulated to believe she was raped by family members at the hands of a former psychologist.

The Centre Daily Times reports

Her attorney, Bernard Cantorna, asked the jury to hold Julian Metter, 59, accountable for planting a “horror story” in the woman’s mind while she was drugged with carbon dioxide. […]

Metter, who had been in practice for 20 years, lost his license to practice psychology in June 2009 when he pleaded guilty to fraudulently billing Medicare, according to the National Council Against Health Fraud.

He was sentenced in February 2011 to serve five months in prison followed by two years probation. Cantorna said Metter is free to continue treating people, just not as a psychologist, after his probation. […]

Cantorna said his client was made to believe she was raped at the hands of her family and abused in cultlike rituals by prominent members of the community.

Metter was accused in the civil lawsuit of creating those images and suggesting them as reality while the woman was drugged and in her most vulnerable state.

“He took a woman who never had any history of this and made her relive the most horrific things one could imagine,” Cantorna said Thursday during closing arguments in the six-day civil trial. “He made her live it.”

The lawsuit alleged the woman suffered lasting emotional anguish as a result. It also stated she suffered a brain injury due to repeated exposures to a mixture of carbon dioxide and oxygen.

Metter administered the mixture, pumped through a mask placed over the woman’s face. He thought the treatment would help recover repressed memories, according to the suit. […]

Metter maintained during the trial the therapy was helping the woman, who he said long suffered from physical and emotional pain. He suggested the woman did suffer abuse in her childhood, including torture tied to a satanic cult he said was based in State College.

False memories — sometimes referred to as ‘recovered memories’ — are therapy-induced fantasies masquerading as memories that seem very real to the person being treated. They often involves accusations and allegations of incest, Satanic Ritual Abuse, or cult involvement.

Research resources on False Memory Syndrome

Trial over doctor’s treatment to resume

A civil lawsuit brought against a former State College psychologist by a patient who said she suffered trauma after being drugged with carbon dioxide went to trial Thursday.

The Centre Daily Times reports

The lawsuit alleged the woman suffered a brain injury and lasting emotional anguish after repeatedly being exposed to the treatments administered by Julian Metter, sometimes as often as seven times a day, multiple days a week for at least three years. […]

Within a week of accepting her as a patient, Metter diagnosed that the woman was repressing memories of childhood abuse, Cantorna said.

The mixture of carbon dioxide and oxygen, pumped through a mask placed over her face, was billed as a means to help the woman remember. While she was under, Metter would suggest she had been raped by members of her family or tortured by community members who were involved in a satanic cult, Cantorna said. The result was a woman who isolated herself completely from her family, relying solely on Metter, who provided financial support and increased the frequency and duration of the sessions, according to [the woman’s attorney, Bernard] Cantorna.

In October 2006, she stopped breathing during a session, the lawsuit alleged. Metter revived her, but wouldn’t take her to the hospital, Cantorna said.

See also:
Jullian Metter ordered to repay Medicare fraud
Research resources on False Memory Syndrome and Satanic and/or Ritual Abuse