09/23/1999 – Analysis of Sudden Retraction in Ashbrook Case

The following comes to the ICFDA courtesy of Ian Goddard, a tireless
researcher and journalist sympathetic to our mission of educating
others to the dangers of mind-altering medications:

The report that Prozac was found in the home of Larry Gene Ashbrook,
who went on a murder spree in a Texas church, has suddenly changed. The
AP reports that investigator “Lt. Mark Krey retracted his earlier
remarks in which he said police found a vial of the antidepressant
Prozac with Ashbrook’s name on it.” [1]

The new story is that the only medications in the house were his
fathers, but the father of Larry is named Jack — two different names!
How could police have mistaken a vial with the name “Jack” on it for
one with the name “Larry” on it? The initial report states:

“A doctor had prescribed the anti-depressant drug Prozac for Larry Gene
Ashbrook … police found a Prozac vial with Ashbrook’s name and want
to ask doctors why it was prescribed. …FBI officials said they ALSO
found nine vials of prescription drugs for Jack Ashbrook…” (emphasis
added) [2]

So the initial report clearly indicates that a distinction had been
made between vials with “Larry” on them and vials with “Jack” on them,
since nine vials belonged to Jack and one vial belonged to Larry. It
also stipulates that since the Prozac vial was Larry’s, they planned to
take the next step of contacting the doctor who made the prescription,
which indicates that they were really sure it said “Larry,” not “Jack.”

Furthermore, the initial Star-Telegram report said that Larry’s father
was “his anchor to reality and his caretaker to ensure he took his
medication.” But now it seems that his father did not ensure he took
his medication because it suddenly seems that he took no medication.
There out is to say he took another medication.

Gee, this certainly appears to have all the signs of a cover-up. In
fact, such a dramatic change of story is prima-facie evidence of a
cover-up. The WorldNetDaily recently reported that anti-psychiatry
activist Dennis Clarke

“…claims that pharmaceutical companies go to great lengths and
expense to cover up the problems that take place. When an incident of
violence occurs, the pharmaceutical “crash teams” go to work to keep
things quiet, according to Clarke.

Teams of psychiatrists are sent to the places where incidents take
place and quickly work to see that medical records are kept sealed,
doctors are convinced to remain silent, and victims are given
monetary payments to prevent them from ever going to court.

“It’s all being covered up, and it’s deliberate. There are billions
and billions of dollars at stake here,” explained Clarke. …” [3]

Think how easy it could be, a couple million dollars could change a lot
of stories, like maybe the one that just changed. Such expenses could
easily be less than the loses in sales that would occur if people
realize that these drugs are harmful and if law suits start rolling in
not only from users but the people they killed. Clearly, there needs to
be an investigation of this now-we-found-it-now-we-didn’t

[1] AP: Police retract remarks about drugs found:

[2] The Star-Telegram: Prozac found at Wedgwood
Baptist killer’s house. By Kathy Sanders 9/20/99:


GODDARD’S JOURNAL: http://www.erols.com/igoddard/journal.htm

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09/21/1999 – Prozac Found at Wedgwood Baptist Killer’s House

This just released today.

Prozac found at Wedgwood Baptist killer’s house
By Kathy Sanders
Star-Telegram Staff Writer

FORT WORTH — A doctor had prescribed the anti- depressant drug Prozac
for Larry Gene Ashbrook, but investigators are unsure whether he had
been taking it when he killed seven people and then himself in a
southwest Fort Worth church last week, police said yesterday.



By Kathy Sanders,  Star-Telegram Staff Writer

Updated: Tuesday, Sep. 21, 1999 at 08:16 CDT

FORT WORTH — A doctor had prescribed the anti-depressant drug Prozac for Larry Gene Ashbrookbut investigators are unsure whether he had been taking it when he killed seven people and then himself in a southwest Fort Worth church last week, police said yesterday.

Fort Worth police Lt. Mark Krey, who is heading the investigation into the largest mass shooting in the city’s history, said police found a Prozac vial with Ashbrook’s name and want to ask doctors why it was prescribed.

Krey said Ashbrook, 47, may have slipped into insanity after his 85-year-old father died in July.

“The level of paranoia within his life had advanced to an extreme stage,”  Krey said. “We’re investigating the possibility that with the death of his father, Mr. Ashbrook stopped taking medication. We believe when he lost his  father, who was his anchor to reality and his caretaker to ensure he took  his medication, he lost any connection to reality.”

Also yesterday, police said a homemade pipe bomb exploded in Wedgwood Baptist Church with enough force that it sent a piece of shrapnel hurtling the sanctuary.

But rather than blasting out into a sanctuary where more than 150 worshippers were taking part in a youth service, most of the shrapnel shot toward the ceiling and then rained down. No one was seriously injured by the shrapnel.

“We are very blessed in the manner in which it detonated … or it would have caused serious bodily injury,” Krey said.

Prozac is commonly used to treat various forms of clinical depression, including depression in children, as well as bulimia and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Dr. Peter Kowlaski, a psychiatrist in private practice in Fort Worth and former medical director for Mental Health- Mental Retardation Services of Tarrant County, said the medical community generally views Prozac as a good anti- depressant that does not contribute to, or prevent, violent behavior.

“The person who is ill will sometimes act out violently, but most people with psychiatric illnesses are not likely to act violently,” he said. “Those who do most often do evil independent of their psychiatric conditions.”

Police found the Prozac bottle in Ashbrook’s Forest Hill home. FBI officials said they also found nine vials of prescription drugs for Jack Ashbrook, who died after a battle with cancer, as well as a diary in which the father documented his medication, said spokeswoman Marjorie Poch.

“The writing changed in the last couple of weeks of the diary. It’s only speculation, but he [Larry Ashbrook] may have started taking his father’s medication,” she said. “Either that or he started recording when his father took the pills for him.”

On Wednesday night, Ashbrook walked into the Wedgwood church, where a youth  rally was under way, and began shooting people, police said.

Killed were Kristi Beckel, 14; Shawn Brown, 23; Susan Kimberly Jones, 23;  Cassandra Griffin, 14; Joseph “Joey” Ennis, 14; Sydney Browning, 36; and  Justin Ray, 17. Seven others were injured.

The final three victims were laid to rest yesterday, but Ashbrook’s body remained unclaimed at the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Aaron Ashbrook, his brother, said the family is completing funeral arrangements, but declined to comment further.

“I think there probably has been more said than there needs to be, and a lot  of it’s untrue,” he said.

He declined to elaborate.

“It wouldn’t make any difference,” he said. “I think the damage has already been done.”

Investigators sorted information yesterday from nearly 70 depositions taken from people the night of the shooting, reinterviewed the wounded and tried to trace Ashbrook’s final, fatal steps.

“Investigators are going through a number of depositions to determine the  exact sequence of events,” said homicide Sgt. Dave Loftis. “We want to know, first of all, specifically what happened and how everything went down that day.”

But the answer to the most- asked questions — what set Ashbrook off and why did he choose Wedgwood — may never come.

“I don’t have any motive right now,” Loftis said. “I don’t know if we’ll ever have an answer to those questions. If we can, we certainly will get them. It’s like any of those senseless acts of violence — there aren’t any answers. And can any motive explain it and make sense of it?”

In his writings, Larry Ashbrook details a vast, unspecified conspiracy against him by law enforcement agencies and others. His brother described him to Wise County sheriff’s deputies as a paranoid schizophrenic.  But the  state mental health system said last week that it had no record of any contact with Ashbrook.

Krey said Ashbrook apparently was such a loner that few people have been found to help explain his activities.

“I believe we won’t find anybody because there is nobody to find. And that is consistent with the mental illness he appeared to be afflicted with,” he said.

Inside the church, Ashbrook fired all six rounds from a .380- caliber semiautomatic handgun, and then fired up to 50 more shots from a Ruger 9 mm semiautomatic pistol, officials said.

Six of the seven people who died were killed by gunshot wounds in the head, autopsy reports show. The seventh was shot in the back.

Ashbrook shot himself with the Ruger, police said. He was apparently alive in a back pew when paramedics rushed into the sanctuary, but was pronounced dead a short time later, police said.

Justin Ray and a woman videotaped Ashbrook’s rampage, police said.  Officials in Forest Hill said Ashbrook may also have made a futile effort to contaminate the city’s water system.

“He put concrete in the commodes and, working for the city, I wanted to make sure he didn’t do something else,” Public Works Director Michael Duehring

“I wanted to make sure he did not contaminate our water system. I can’t go any further than that and tell you what he did, but he didn’t do any damage.”

FBI officials inspected plumbing in Ashbrook’s home Thursday but did not consider the threat serious, Poch said.

“The agent said it looked like he was just trying to mess up the inside of the house,” she said. “The agent who was out there said he had ripped off the shower head and neck and put one of those paper cones and a quart of motor oil to back down into the pipes. He said it was stuck in there still.”

Staff writers Bob Mahlburg and Carolyn Poirot contributed to this report.

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