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This profile was last updated on 2/7/10  and contains information from public web pages.

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Skeptic versus Psychic: A 22 year legal battle, 7 Feb 2010 [cached]
John Merrell Skeptic
(This is a segment of a multi-screen web site. You may wish to see HOME or the index at the bottom of this page)
Renier critic John Merrell: His battle against pseudoscience and for child safety
Among the critics of police psychics and particularly psychics who are paid public funds to provide paranormal testimony is John Merrell. Dr. Gary Posner, M.D., a collegue for more than 20 years with Merrell in critically examining many of the claims of psychics is also profiled with a link on this site.
John Merrell has over the past 25 years investigated an assortment of quackery schemes and deceptions such as recent psychic stock picks for investors tied to non-existent funds. He has been honored on several occasions both at the federal and state level for his work.
In late 2006 Merrell noted that "there are dozens of psychics who claim to be able summon the dead and have psychic powers of a God.
According to Merrell some law enforcement personnel have knowingly sent journalists towards a fantasized psychic story --- always a easy story for TV and media drama --- as an apparent cover for flawed investigations or to 'play' a naive suspect. He has noted several times law enforcement personnel in so doing have managed to cover real issues they preferred the media to initially miss.
Merrell has for more than 20 years also been a member of CHILD (Children's Healthcare Is A Legal Duty) a nonprofit US organization fighting religion-based medical neglect.
In his efforts against pseudoscience claims he believes both law enforcement officials and the media share a responsibility for making sure claims are reported carefully and accurately.
Among her critics: John Merrell
Psychic detective Renier missing person search: Charade EXPOSED!, 7 Jan 2007 [cached]
FBI Special Agent Ressler assisted in the defense of Noreen Renier in an Oregon courtroom in 1986 when Renier sued skeptic John Merrell for libel.
In early 2006, critic John Merrell decided to review, from top to bottom, Renier's claims surrounding the plane crash near Gardner, Massachusetts.
By surprise, after 22 years, in June 2006 Merrell located two people who knew about the crash.
Mr. Wilber told Merrell after reviewing A Mind for Murder (co-written by Naomi Lucks), that psychic investigator Noreen Renier "doesn't know what she's talking about. . . . I don't think she's got anything right. . . . My daughter and I found the plane ourselves. . . . We never heard of her. . . . She's lying.
After providing Merrell with a tour of the airport and showing him maps and aerial photography of the area, he told Merrell, "We knew for a fact [the crash site] wasn't in New Hampshire."
Researcher John Merrell smiles and notes this bigger issue.
In late 2005 Merrell wrote, "There are more than 350 towns and cities in Massachusetts.
Over dinner with Merrell they ran through everyone in the last 40 years --- not just 23 years --- in the crash area who could possibly have matched the hunting dog owner Renier described.
Among her critics: John Merrell
Background on science writer John ..., 4 April 2011 [cached]
Background on science writer John Merrell
Commentary By Sherlock, Sherlock artwork and flash image are TM of John Merrell.
You can respond to my e-mail ..., 3 Aug 2012 [cached]
You can respond to my e-mail (which is also the response for my coverage about Renier on the site commentarybysherlock --- and for response send to me at amindformurder [at] gmail which was the title of Renier's original book. -Thanks. -John Merrell, principal Renier critic.
Lawyer with Stokes Lawrence defends psychic: Legal issues explode [cached]
On November 16, 2006 a Washington federal court granted skeptic writer John Merrell a judgment against the sole police psychic to lecture at the FBI, and the leading psychic investigator seen on the Court TV series Psychic Detectives.
That 2006 judgment was based on psychic Noreen Renier breaching a Florida court settlement signed between Merrell and Renier in 1992.
On April 5, 2007 the same judge awarded costs and fees to Merrell.
The court awarded Merrell $39,558 which is just one slice of the pie.
The attorney representing Berkley Publishing (Penguin Group, U.S.A. Inc.) as the publisher of Renier's book A Mind for Murder told a Washington state judge they banished all publication in early 2006 following the lawsuit by Merrell.
Merrell notes "The string of failures by Noreen Renier is lengthy.
Merrell stated in early 2007 that "Noreen Renier was notified by my attorney in September 2005 that without her response I would file a lawsuit.
On her 71st birthday (January 16, 2008) Merrell estimated Renier's legal bills and lawsuit related losses over the past 20 years are 30 times more than any funds she didn't pay her attorneys following the $23,800 settlement payment he gave her in 1992.
Merrell originally filed in a lower state court and attempted throughout 2006 to keep it at the state level.
"I would have expected even a pre-law student would have turned their nose up at this case --- the outcome was quite clear from the beginning" notes Merrell.
After signing a Florida state settlement with psychic detective Noreen Renier in early 1992, John Merrell broke his silence after almost 14 years by filing a lawsuit in December 2005 following Renier's publication of her book A Mind For Murder.
On November 16, 2005 United States District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle granted a summary judgment sought by John Merrell.
John Merrell's Response To Noreen Renier's Opposition To Motion To Remand To Snohomish County Superior Court
Background on John Merrell
IP & Sherlock TM by John Merrell.Media support acknowledged.
Other People with the name "Merrell":
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