Flannery: On Paey and PRN

Initial Reflections on the Case of Richard Paey; by John P. Flannery II, Esq; War on Doctors/Pain Crisis blog of the Pain Relief Network; 2007-09-21

Paey Wheeled to Freedom
Richard Paey is free! Sept. 20, 2007

Dear friends,

I’m just back to Northern virginia, by way of Charlotte, after what happened at the Florida State Capitol this morning.

When Linda and the family and I went into the Cabinet room this morning, jam-packed with people, the Florida Parole Commission had recommended against granting Richard any relief.

But the Governor and the Cabinet decided otherwise.

The room erupted in applause and Linda said it was like a scene from Rocky.

There is no question that all the letters and calls and e-mails and demonstrations came together to make a significant difference.

The warden volunteered to get Richard home – even as we sent Linda off to meet him at the prison in Daytona while I stayed at the Capitol to make sure there were no problems there.

You all must know how strongly that Siobhan believed that this case was wrong and could be righted from the start.

Linda’s resolve to reunite her family and Richard’s devotion to his family and to Linda makes me think of the iron will of Frank Fisher that got him through his challenge.

Gumption is required absolutely in order to have a chance of success in these assaults on your reputation and freedom.

When Siobhan called in January 2006 and asked if I would make the argument to the Court of Appeals for Richard based on her reading of a Washington Post editorial I’d written, she explained what we were up against in these pain cases.

Thus did Siobhan’s cause became my own. We would have never gotten to this success had it not been for Siobhan and Frank and so many others who believed in Richard’s cause and poked and prodded with suggestions and support at critical junctures in this war.

As Siobhan indicated earlier today, if it wasn’t also for enlightened and disciplined thinking by journalists and columnists, there wouldn’t have been a voice separate from our own that confirmed the injustice that was Richard Paey’s case.

Siobhan and Frank Fisher came to the oral appellate argument before the Florida Appellate court in February 2006, but they also gathered the people from the media at that time as well, got them to the court house, briefed them, and this was so critical to opening up this argument, so that it was not just in court but in the streets and beyond the state of florida as well.

Frank was always full of examples and insights we could use to explain the argument to the court.

Siobhan’s single-minded devotion to the cause generally, and to helping Richard gain his freedom, combined with the efforts of so many other people, again made this the kind of ensemble effort that can and did make a difference for the better – resulting in Richard’s pardon.

Like Frank’s ordeal, this was a painful 10 year odyssey from the first charges in 1997 to the release today after 3 1/2 years in jail.

We can hope that this will help illuminate the darkness that is the government’s intolerant pain policy toward chronic pain patients. How many other people must endure what Richard did?

In any case, at the very least, the Paey family went to sleep tonight intact, and as one family again, under the same roof with their father — home at long last.

Each of you have made a difference if you only wrote a letter or said a silent prayer in support of Richard’s release.

Thank you one and all for your insights and support.

Flannery and Reynolds at Paey Press Conference
John Flannery, with Siobhan Reynolds visible over his shoulder, and Linda Paey in the background, at a press conference earlier in the Richard Paey trials.

Warmest regards,

John P. Flannery II – Campbell Miller Zimmerman PC
19 East Market St., Leesburg, VA 20176
Office: 703-771-8344 // JonFlan@aol.com
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