Michael Schiavo Fails to Show for Deposition, Terri Possibly Hospitalized

Bioethics   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 5, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Michael Schiavo Fails to Show for Deposition, Terri Possibly Hospitalized

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
August 5, 2004

Clearwater, FL (LifeNews.com) — Though it wasn’t a shock to the family of Terri Schiavo, her estranged husband Michael failed to show up this week for a deposition that a local judge allowed. Attorneys for Terri’s parents hoped to depose Michael Schiavo in their case to replace him with a new legal guardian.

Meanwhile, Terri’s family is concerned that Terri has recently been secretly hospitalized and that Michael has failed to follow a court order requiring him to update Terri’s parents on any changes in her medical condition.

For the second time in as many requests, Michael failed to show up for a scheduled deposition. Late last month, Circuit Court Judge George Greer allowed Terri’s parents to depose Michael.

"Schiavo’s deposition disregard is in defiance to a Clearwater court ruling that attorneys representing the parents of Terri Schindler-Schiavo can examine Michael Schiavo under oath," the Schindler family said in a statement.

Bob and Mary Schindler are also concerned about their daughter’s medical condition.

During a visit on July 30, the Schindlers noticed a hospital wristband from Mease-Countryside Hospital on their daughter’s arm.

When they asked staff at the Park Place Assisted Living Facility, where Terri resides, about the hospitalization, they were told that Michael had phoned the facility and prevented staff from disclosing any details.

Michael was called a second time and he, again, refused to provide any information about Terri’s medical status.

A 1996 court order compels Michael Schiavo to disclose changes in Terri’s medical condition to her parents and to notify the staff that they can provide details as well.

Terri’s parents have accused Michael of violating this order on several occasions and they have filed suit seeking to remove Michael as Terri’s guardian because of this and other reasons.

"This particular court order defiance is ongoing. Mr. Schiavo continues to deny the Schindlers information about their daughter’s medical condition," the statement provided to LifeNews.com read.

In his deposition order, Judge Greer said family attorney Pat Anderson could depose both Michael and Jodi Centonze, Michael’s live-in fiance since 1997 and the mother of two children with Terri’s husband.

The Schindlers, in their guardianship lawsuit, point to Michael’s refusal to use money from a $700,000 medical malpractice award for medical care or rehabilitative treatment for Terri. As a result of the lack of care her health has deteriorated and five of Terri’s teeth had to be extracted recently.

They also say Michael has abrogated his duties by failing to comply with a Florida statute requiring guardians to establish an annual medical care plan for patients under their watch.

Michael Schiavo has failed to file the annual care plan since August 2001.

Greer has not made a final decision on their request for change in guardianship.

Related web sites:
Terri Schiavo’s family – https://www.terrisfight.org