Shellie’s Medical Malpractice Nightmare

and her

Fight for Freedom of Speech


Approximately an hour later the jury reached a verdict. The verdict was read and in favor of Robert S. KaganM.D.. I was stunned. I couldn't help but wonder if the jury was even listening to the lengthy medical testimony.  Did they stay awake for the whole trial (medical testimony can be so boring)?   Were they just too uneducated to understand all the medical testimony?  It's hard not to forget that one of my jurors didn't understand English very well.  Mr. Deratany immediately asked the court for a mistrial based upon Mr. Tarpey's improper closing arguments to the jury and the judge's refusal to properly respond. That request was denied.

At the time the verdict was read I felt like I was going to pass out and was holding back tears. I waited until the jury was excused back to the jury room and left the courtroom with my head up. I was not about to let Dr. Kagan and Michael Tarpey see me in the pain that they caused me by misrepresenting the facts and being rewarded with a verdict in their favor.

Picture of empty jury boxSeveral days later the court received a letter from a juror's friend saying that I did not receive a fair trial and gave reasons for that opinion. A copy of the letter was sent by the court to Mr. Deratany and Mr. Tarpey. Mr. Deratany went before the court asking for a mistrial again which the court denied. Mr. Deratany asked the court for the opportunity to conduct a court supervised questioning of the jurors. I asked that the FBI be called to investigate, as I was told that that frequently happens when there is a questionable situation with a jury. The court had a hearing on the matter and at that time Michael Tarpey stated that the letter could have been written by me or my family in a desperate attempt to cause a mistrial and overturn the verdict. Me or someone in family doing this to cause a mistrial - how ridiculous! Mr. Tarpey said that that explanation is plausible because "during the pendency of the lawsuit plaintiff has written letters to certain witnesses expressing her disappointment and disapproval with these witnesses upon learning of their testimony." That accusation is 100% false.   Where are these letters?  Wouldn't he have brought them with him to show the court, he knew what the hearing was about?   Tarpey didn't bring any such letters because no such letters exist! Tarpey went on to say that I wrote a "very offensive and disturbing letter"to Dr. Caleel's office after he gave testimony and expressed his opinions.  Again, where was such a letter?  That would be great evidence to present to the court. I found that accusation ridiculous on so many levels.  The most important reason, Dr. Caleel didn't have any opinions in spite of his thirty plus years of being a surgeon.   Even if he had given any opinions, I would never do such a thing. Mr. Tarpey's representations to the court were completely untrue. His statements slandered my family and me. Michael Tarpey was once again able to attack me with his lies and distortions of the truth, and I was not even in the courtroom to defend myself against these ugly and false accusations.  Why is it that attorneys have free reign to say anything that they want about anybody that they want, without any concern of repercussion?  It was bad enough that Michael Tarpy tried to paint me as a despicable person during the trial, but now he is publicly disparaging my family?  At that time my father was the president and ceo of a major Chicago bank and a very well-known businessman.  To say that my dad was angry by Tarpey's statements about my family in open court is an understatement. Just how far will Michael Tarpey go?  The court again denied Mr. Deratany's motion for a new trial, as well as his request to conduct a court supervised questioning of the jury. Mr. Deratany filed a post-trial motion asking for a new trial based on seven different allegations of error in the court's rulings throughout the trial. That motion was also denied.

I was not surprised by the court's endless rulings against us during the trial and after. At the time that I learned my trial was assigned to Judge Lynn Egan, I was told by many attorneys who were familiar with her that she just came to the bench after being a defense attorney and that she is a defendant's judge. That was an understatement; it felt to me like Judge Lynn Egan was part of Dr. Kagan's defense team through this entire saga. This is also the reason that I knew that there was no way that Judge Lynn Egan would even talk to the jury regarding that anonymous letter.

The rulings that  judges makes during a trial will make the difference between winning and losing your case.  In my opinion Judge Lynn Egan ruled unjustly in favor of  Dr. Kagan on every critical issues.   Watching Michael Tarpey misrepresent the truth and the judge ruling against me all the time, I lost all hope of winning early on in the trial.