Monday, November 9, 2009

A story is only as good as its sources

Reading between the lines, a story about a Maine family that has suffered two tragedies points to a third: mental illness

On Oct. 29 the body of Michal Flisiuk, 55 of China, Maine was found burned in the parking lot of the New Orleans hospital where his daughter Blanka Peridot died in 2007 after giving birth to a stillborn son.

Fire investigators believe he may have set himself on fire with a cigarette and something combustible or bizarrely committed suicide. The fire was put out before it engulfed the entire car and papers inside the cab of the vehicle were left intact.

The family, however, believes both father and daughter were murdered by a conspiracy that involves the Louisiana State University Public Hospital, New Orleans law enforcement and the city coroner.

Besides going to the media, the family has posted bizarre You Tube videos that juxtapose taped phone conversations, news reports and highway footage shot from a moving car. Michal Flisiuk also ran several websites about his late daughters, most of which is erratic and difficult to follow.

The different "clues" the family mentions carry little weight. A wrong number phone call asking for a name they claim sounded like the name of one of the doctors involved. They also say the hospital has never revealed the cause of their daughter's death. I find this hard to believe, and the reporter did not confirm it. Instead, we have a line saying the hospital did not release a statement.

The reporter failed to mention the phalanx of laws that restrict the release of medical information to the media. Perhaps the family should give permission to the hospital to release the records.

This isn't a joke; it's not a funny subject. Everything I can see here shows a family that tragically lost a daughter, as well as a grandson, and obsessed over finding someone to blame. This may have lead the father to take his own life and it only fits into the paranoia.

And what is the press doing? Holding hands with the delusions as they go over a cliff.

This story could use a few skeptical sources, such as responses to the families' wild allegations from relevant experts. Until that happens, I'm filing this story under journalistic negligence.


  1. It's called HIPPA. Health Insurance Portability and Acountability act. We were briefed on it in EMT school. Basically you are not allowed to give out personal information about a patient unless that patient allows you to. In different jursidictions the laws are different but for the most part the patient must give a HIPPA waiver to disclose information.

  2. Thank you, that's exactly what is going on. As a reporter, I encountered HIPPA a few times, and I'm sure the reporter (not to mention the editors) had come across it too. It's ridiculous to air these baseless accusations without bothering to challenge their wobbly base.

    The entire premise - that a hospital is engaging in assassination to cover up a past motive-free murder. Although this conspiracy reaches far into the law enforcement, it couldn't be bothered to place to move the body out of the parking lot.

    Exactly how does a fire that strangely didn't consume the entire car (probably because it was extinguished quicky) point to murder. I thought people who torch a car cause the entire thing to go up by dousing the vehicle with gasoline.

  3. Steven King you're not.
    "Journalistic negligence" is presented in your own incompetence and its pretense to "journalism", while lacking any whatsoever investigative knowledge/skills i.e. "mental illness" terminology, Napoleonic Code in Louisiana.
    No wonder when you're aging in Gorham, Maine while going throught the prelonged sexual identity crisis.
    Try me for I'm planning to shred you to pieces nota bene I eat little babies!
    So far your reference to journalism is your incoherent blog on My Space! If you'll keep my comment(s) or not - you're mine! And I promise it will not enhance your "fame" sought through edited AP publications. Did you know:your suits are ridiculous; for N.Y.C. and Europe Cosmo?

  4. Why don't you check your sources Michael? If you want to have an semblance of a career as a journalist you should start looking at all sides to the story, before making some distorted uneducated claims. You know nothing about what happened to the Flisiuk family so I suggest you stay far away from that subject when it comes to your mediocre writings.


  5. Sir, this is terrible what you have written here.We are in very deep grief and shock, and for you to write this is unbelievable.My dear mother has lost a child and her husband and I my dear father. What you write about my family is inaccurate and unfair, as well, as just plain awful to write about a family in grief.We have not asked for all of this and now we have to be punished for it by your unfair and inaccurate writing.I hope anybody who reads what you wrote will realize that you are calling a family in grief that you don't know, mentally ill.We all love and miss my father very much.
    Marcel Flisiuk

  6. Marcel, like I wrote before, I think your family has been through multiple tragedies and you have my sympathy for that. However, I was not subtle in saying the way your family responded has been inappropriate.

    I did not write about your family to punish you. I was concerned with the way the press has presented your story with a lack of skepticism.

    This is not an apology. I understand this is discomforting for you to read, but when someone from your camp posts things like "I'm planning to shred you to pieces" I think it's clear that you're not in a mood to listen.

  7. Michael, did you know that Michal Flisiuk orphaned 2 minor children?! You've hurt them enormously... We do not have a "camp".On the contrary... Let me tell you about "South China, Tennessee". People threatened to burn our house, for disturbing them at the cemetery, where Blanka is buried!

  8. Have you ever studied Forensic Sciences e.g. charred bodies in the vehicle fires, do you know the difference between: the cause and the manner of death?! Believe it or not, the family could not meet a single physician, except for the pathologist in the morgue! Young an conservative... Then, let me tell you, 25% medical interns and residents are from the Third World Countries on American Federal Grants! From Pakistan (wearing burkas!), Nigeria, Bangladesh and so on... They were kids as ignorant as you. Over hundred of pages of medical records were studied not only by the family, but by the I.C.U. and OB/GYN medical EXPERTS from Baton Rouge (hired by our attorney). The baby was "viable"! Brandon Perez started the one day killing by declaring the baby macerated! The "mentally ill" family never publishes anything hypothetical; only the facts which can be proven. The web sites are not "tied up" yet, but all the threads are connected. You don't like the "political correctness"? Well, that's what Media do! One grants them interview and they edit, and publish out of context. You should know that according to your "credentials". Nobody is looking for someone "to blame", since we know who is to blame. If we were after money lawsuit (refused) it would had been long solved. Except, when they pay from the L.S.U. Fund they also buy their silence! You do not know much about basis of mental illness classification e.g. paranoia and/or paranoid schizophrenia. As a "journalist" you are responsible for the precise terminology, rather than common slung. "Brandon Perez call" is on the telephone records. Furthermore someone had canceled the vehicle's full coverage insurance as the "owner", on October 29th, after Michal Flisiuk had been dead. Contrary to your other comments, the records are PUBLIC! I do not suppose you are equipped to comprehend the complexity of these tragedies. You would have to know nola first... Do you know that in the 21st Century they buried the Katrina victims in the mass grave, without performing DNA tests?! New Orleans is not "All that Jazz", but the Federal corrupted vessel - major port and oil rigs. Its Mafia sells body parts, police orders executions, do your homework. Those who run the City, meet at night at Arnaud's for poker, with their guns next to them on the table. Do not use our name for your promotion, and if you are "ethical" in the published journalism - issue an apology. Ignorance is the root cause of the calamity we endure! Blanka was more mature in her career at the age of 12-13!
    November 15, 2009 3:22 AM

  9. Michael, don't pick up on my spelling mistakes, grammar, nor tell me to "go back where I came from" since I was here before you were born.
    My name is Teresa Flisiuk Chrzanowski. I had next to none computer knowledge prior to my daughter's murder in June 2007. I left my job for Criminal Sheriff Office (Fotti; later the D.A.) while my Department was in the process of "computerizing". Yet, it was me who initiated, and kept all the Web spin, and yes, including "bizarre movies" and web sites. Guess what? It worked, so to speak. I know whom I'm targetting and what for. I "accomplished" to attach the crime to the infamous careers of "rising" interns and residents. They even wrote to me whining! The corpses are untouchable and above the law, like "elected official" Frank Minyard, who to his own admission wouldn't be elected even a dog catcher in any other American town/city. Frank Minyard had authorized illegal autopsy in my daughter's death, which was classified as "unexplained death", and "coroner's case". He allowed it to be performed in and by the hospital where she had been killed. Frank is a truly rotten redneck. My husband's body went to the same pathologist, who was involved in my daughter's autopsy, and who was "pissed off" by the "bizarre websites" and overall publicity at my courtesy. The conflict of interest which I had pointed to the Homicide Detective Aucoin, who in turned, ceased our communication. I could go on, but I would like to emphasize TO YOU the power of Media. The WORD can change the World. If it is not compromised...
    November 15, 2009 12:14 PM

  10. Michael, normally I would have an intellectual debate. You have no way of knowing how one's entire life can collapse within 2 years, voiding even the past. You are young, and dry, not anticipating yet the storms of your own life. Your intent was not to attack the media, but the family. In our inferno it wouldn't be surprising if any of us responded with psychotic episode. I could and had to separate my pain from coping with the wounded children; I had to detach myself also from "subjective", writing clinical papers about my own daughter, or rather her mutilated body! I wrote in the third person "patient". I am not the person who could cry in the courtroom,for the attorney's strategy.
    I tell you about the pointless case I had tried to debate on You Tube to no avail. Pure white trash story, which was boosted by Fox. It happens every day and to the most promising, brilliant teenagers. It shocks the community, but doesn't get national attention, since it is so common for teens to die in the car crashes. It happened in Maine to brilliant girl from the Erskine Academy. She was not drunk, neither the driver. It was on the secondary, unremarkable road in Central Maine. Everything in her life was prepping her for the successful future; she was to graduate last year.She had died, while the driver teen had not suffered any bodily injuries except being on suicidal watch. The You Tube story with the national attention had no merit at all. The underage girl was at the party, which she left with her 2 other "friends". All drunk to the stupor. Mother lied that "she didn't know the driver", while they were from the same community, and "equally" mourned.(My Space). Either way, if she had known the driver, or worse, had gotten to the vehicle with the stranger, is not relevant.She had gone to some party, while other kids work hard, she had not known life, and had not left any significant mark, other than she had died without personal responsibility for her actions. Her mother was not charged for parenting negligence. Her daughter's life was wiped out tabula rasa. I tried to reason the unfair lack of parallel to the innocent victims, who die with significant marks in their lives, and their lost valuable future. The trio was also potentially homicidal. In response I got profanities, and regretted for posting my comments. I just wanted to understand why Blanka, so superior and accomplished had to die, and how such loss could relate to some voided kid... You should check those videos!
    Explain to me that kid's death in the context how it was depicted by the media?!