One supporter has asked if this is a “hit list.” Melissa Diegel has until Monday (May 18th) to turn over all the contact information, including phone numbers and emails, of every single person that she has communicated with about her daughters, or an Arizona judge says she will go to jail.
The Facebook page set up by supporters to follow the Diegel sisters’ story has more than 9,000 followers, many of whom have been actively involved in advocating for the release of Hannah and Kayla from CPS custody.
Health Impact News was one of the first news organizations to report on the Diegel family story in 2014:
A judge ordered us, via Melissa Diegel, to take down our story back in 2014. The story is still up.
According to their page, A Miracle for Two Sisters, Melissa faces a judge on Monday on contempt of court charges. Superior Court Judge Colleen McNally reportedly ordered her to turn over a list of all of the people that she contacted about her children’s story. Melissa complied, turning over a list of entities and organizations that she had been in contact with.
Allegedly, this was not enough. It was reportedly not “complete compliance.” Only complete compliance with the order will be enough to keep this mom out of jail.
IS MELISSA DIEGEL FACING A TOTALITARIAN DICTATOR?
“Not only does Melissa Diegel have to cope with the harm to her children she must also cope with a Superior Court Judge who has threatened her with jail for speaking out about her children and for associating with other parents and families victimized by the same corrupt system. The judge (a woman) has DEMANDEDthat Melissa HAND OVER the NAMES, ADDRESS, TELEPHONE NUMBERS andEMAILS of ALL HER FRIENDS and FAMILY and ANYONE she has communicated with regarding her children OR go to jail on Monday the 18th of May, 2015!”
A supporter writes on the Facebook page:
On Monday, May 18th at 2:00 pm Melissa Diegel will be appearing in the Durango courthouse for contempt charges. The judge has instructed her that if she is not in complete compliance with the order that she will be incarcerated.
We support Melissa’s first amendment right to free speech and to hold her in contempt for that very reason is unconstitutional.
If you live in Arizona we urge you to attend this hearing to stand in support of the principles she believes in and the rights she and every American are entitled to.
A great number of parents around the country have faced unconstitutional gag orders, which would prevent them from speaking out about what is happening to their children, and possibly expose corrupt actions by social workers, lawyers, and judges. Many parents have been coerced into silence, but increasingly, parents are speaking out and telling their side of the story, exposing their tales of injustice to the media and the public. However, the order by Judge McNally appears to be unprecedented.
Does an Arizona court have a right to your name, address, phone number, and email, if you communicated with Melissa Diegel? If you are one of the many parents going through a similar situation, and you reached out to Mrs. Diegel as an understanding ear, are you willing for her to give all of your contact information to a judge? Will this order have a chilling effect on the public’s Constitutional Freedom of Speech?
If the judge can order such a list to be turned over, what are the implications for privacy? Has the judge crossed a line? Advocates for the Diegel family believe that it has.
Do we as a society want to have judges wearing jack boots under their black robes acting like third world totalitarian dictators? Melissa Diegle’s case is more like a Stalinist purge than a US judicial proceeding. She has yet to receive a trial… the Judge refuses to acknowledge the motions Melissa has presented to her… strange that the cut off date to hear these motions or the case is closed falls on Monday the 18.. Please join the Court Watch of this case Monday, May 18th at 2:00 PM at the Courtroom of Judge McNally to witness this miscarriage of justice and persecution of this American woman and her children.”
Supporters are inviting everyone who can to show up at the courthouse at 3131 West Durango, Phoenix, Arizona, at 2 p.m. Mountain Time Monday, May 18, to be a witness to the proceedings in the court hearing. (“Court Watchers Needed” event information here.)
Melissa Diegel has issued the following statement on the event page:
It is important to express that I do not feel that I am above the law, but rather I expect that the Arizona courts should uphold the Constitution. I have been denied a jury trial. I have been denied a trial within 90 days. I have been denied the right to see my daughters and I have been denied the right to prove my innocence in the court of law as “I have been accused” and stripped of my precious daughters.
I do not understand the Arizona system. Exactly what rules they going by? Are they following their own judicial policy or the statues?
Please stand together now families of Arizona. There is power in numbers. Rights will continue to be stripped if we do not stand up and say enough is enough!
I hope to see you on Monday You can make a difference. ….Just like Martin Luther King changed a nation we can too and it starts now and continues even after I get arrested.
Judge Colleen McNally can be reached here, at 602–506-5961.