Ranieri Hears JC Penney Sex Abuse Alleg. for 1st Time in Depo – MB#273

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Ranieri Hears JC Penney Sex Abuse Alleg. for 1st Time in Depo – MB#273 A shocked Ranieri heard sex abuse claims leveled against JC Penney guards from the mother for the first time during the actual deposition JUNE 11 2005 — Attorney Anthony Ranieri testified on May 24 2005 in the Michael Jackson trial concerning his previous representation of the mother. Ranieri was the family’s personal injury lawyer who worked for the Feldman & Rothstein law firm during the JC Penney lawsuit; the same firm where Mary Holzer was a paralegal. He says he met with Janet Arvizo (Janet A.) the first time he got her call concerning the allegations against the department store in 1998. By now, you should be very family with what triggered the $3M lawsuit against JCPenney. Gavin and Star Arvizo were apparently shoplifting merchandise out of the store. They were stopped in the parking lot by security guards and an altercation ensued. It was some 9 months after the run-in with the guards that the mother sought out the law firm of Feldman & Rothstein, according to Mary Holzer’s testimony. Ranieri was able to testify because the mother fully waived her attorney-client privilege. He says Janet A. had always denied she was abused by her then-husband David Arvizo. She had always maintained to Ranieri that these bruises were from the JC Penney guards. If you remember, before Ranieri, Holzer testified that the mother told her these now-infamous bruises were the result of a domestic disturbance and not from any JC Penney guards. So not only could she have been guilty of fraud, but she may have also been guilty of fabricating evidence to commit that fraud. Ranieri, as her attorney, was there during the mother’s JC Penney deposition. Under questioning by Mesereau, he testified that he had numerous meetings with the mother in preparation for the lawsuit. He also revealed that she came up with sexual molestation allegations seemingly in the middle of the deposition. Much to the shock of Ranieri, she accused the JC Penney guards, for the first time, of fondling her approximately 25 times during that altercation. From the transcript:

Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Do you recall in that deposition Janet Arvizo saying that she was fondled approximately 25 times by J.C. Penney’s security guards on that particular day? … THE WITNESS: Yes, I recall that. Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: And had she ever told you that before? RANIERI: She had not. MESEREAU: Was that the first time you ever heard Janet tell that story? RANIERI: It was. 13-16…21-27 (p 11795)

One wonders what in the world was going through Ranieri’s mind hearing this for the first time. And remember, the celebrity fundraiser that Chris Tucker says he attended, the association with George Lopez, etc., all came after 1998 when Ranieri was representing her in the JC Penney suit. Ranieri says at some point in time he became aware of the fundraiser they were having for the accuser. He says Janet A. is the one who told him about it. Earlier, there were inferences – if not outright statements – from the prosecution that the mother really didn’t know anything about these fundraisers; and that it was the father who would go around asking for money. Well, Ranieri says it was Janet A. who directly asked him for money, although he didn’t give her any. From the transcript:

MESEREAU: How did you learn about that fund-raiser? RANIERI: I believe all of my recollection is that Janet informed me that there was some sort of fund-raiser going on to raise funds for Gavin’s medical treatment and living expenses. MESEREAU: Were you invited to the fund-raiser? RANIERI: No. I don’t recall it being a formal fund-raiser. I thought it was just sort of a solicitation of money. MESEREAU: Did she ask you for money directly? RANIERI: She did. MESEREAU: Did you give her any money? RANIERI: I did not. MR. MESEREAU: I have no further questions. 19-28 | 1-4 (p 11796-11797)

Ranieri’s short direct testimony completely knocked down two prosecution contentions: 1) that the mother never asked for money from anyone; and 2) that the mother really wasn’t involved in any of these fundraisers. Here were have clear, unimpeachable testimony that she did know and she did specifically ask Ranieri for money. It also clearly established the mother has a history of making up allegations – while under oath – to the astonishment of even her legal counsel. I’m sure the prosecutors in this “case” know that all too well by now. What’s worse is that, according to NBC – who got their hands on over 100 pages of information related to that JC Penney case – reported that the children later backed up the mother’s sexual molestation allegation. They were much younger than they are now (or were in 2003). So that history was obviously established by the defense. This is not the first time abuse allegations have flown in this family. The mother accused the father of molesting the daughter, Davellin Arvizo, during their divorce. Gavin Arvizo accused his mother of beating him to a teacher once when the teacher threatened to call the mother because of his tardiness (see Accuser has history of changing his story – MSNBC). Not to mention they all have accused the father of physically abusing them and their mother. Davellin A. also confessed to Carol Lemere that the mother would beat all three of them and would sometimes hit the father, David A. (see Delayed Court Doc Reveals Startling Info – HOT DOC / MiniBullet #20) Couple this with the explosive testimony from Chris Tucker, Vernee Watson-Johnson and Mary Holzer, and there’s nowhere prosecutors could go. Ranieri’s testimony was so damaging that prosecutors didn’t even cross-examine him. Let’s hope the jury takes notice. -MJEOL

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