Marijuana and Cannabis News
By Steve Elliott ~alapoet~ in News
Monday, July 2, 2012 at 11:43 am
|Forensic DNA & Drug Testing Services, Inc.|
|Jim Turnage testified in cases which resulted in thousands of people losing custody of their children and countless citizens being put behind bars. Now he's accused of being a fraud with no training and no qualifications|
James Turnage, his company Forensic DNA & Drug Testing Services, and Medtox Scientific were sued in Dallas County Court by lead plaintiff B.W.D., reports David Lee at Courthouse News Service.
Thousands of parents lost access to their children and countless citizens are behind bars due to Turnage's flawed testimony, according to B.W.D.
B.W.D. said that Turnage, of Ovilla, Texas, wrongfully called him an "alcohol and drug user" during a custody dispute. Turnage and his company claim to seal and ship urine specimens to defendant Medtox Scientific, of St. Paul, Minnesota.
Turnage presents himself as an "expert in drug testing" and "evaluating drug test results," and has been appointed to to drug tests in custody disputes and criminal matters in Dallas, Tarrant, Collin and Denton counties for years, according to B.W.D.
"Turnage, however, lacks even the minimal educational requirements to work in any technical job in a licensed drug and alcohol testing laboratory," B.W.D.'s complaint says. "Turner has no college degree and is not a toxicologist; he is an imposter."
"He has masqueraded for years as a technical or scientific expert in the field of toxicology or drug and alcohol testing and has presented himself to the public and the courts as an expert witness by disseminating non-peer review papers to the legal community that contain false scientific information and data cut and pasted without cited references."
According to the plaintiff, Turnage is qualified only to be a lowly urine specimen collector, and has failed to distinguish between that job -- basically, accepting a cup of piss from a suspected drug user -- and that of a forensic toxicologist, who is a qualified expert with years of scientific training.
"The impact of Turnage's unsupervised, unchecked, unregulated mishandling of specimens and his unregulated and unqualified interpretations of test results or deliberate manipulation of the process has a far reaching effect on the citizens of Dallas, Collin, Denton and Tarrant Counties," the complaint says.
"Literally thousands of mothers and fathers have been denied possession of their children and countless numbers of citizens are behind bars based on Turnage's handling of the specimens and his interpretation of the test results."
B.W.D. said he submitted urine samples to Turnage for drug tests for a child custody matter in March 2010. Five months later, he said, Turnage testified a urine specimen he'd submitted that was analyzed by Medtox was invalid due to dilution.
But according to B.W.D., Medtox's results did not indicate dilution and that because of Turnage's misrepresentation, he was forced to agree to weekly random urinalysis for alcohol and drugs, installation of a breathalyzer in his car for a year and other "onerous terms" in order to maintain joint custody of his daughter.
B.W.D. said he has taken about 60 drug tests with other labs during the same time period as Turnage's tests and passed all of them, yet several of Turnage's tests have come back with false positives, have been resubmitted for testing, have been tainted or invalidated, or were sent to Medtox well beyond 24 hours after collection.
"Remarkably, every time defendants tested wife, Turnage was able to have the results of her test completed within 24 hours and of course, her results, the five times she was tested, came back 'negative,' the complaint said.
"Not once was there a challenge or a question about my wife's specimen's," B.W.D. said. "Even more remarkable was that the same Medtox labs technician certified wife's specimen each time, which is more than just a remote possibility."
"Because of Turnage's fraudulent behavior, plaintiff took his last test with turn age in March of 2011," the complaint says. "Not surprisingly, since changing labs, all of plaintiff's results have been 'negative' with no anomalies and several of wife's results have come back 'positive' for drugs or alcohol.
"It was not, however, until plaintiff did some additional research on his own that he discovered Turnage gave wife at least 29 hours advance notice of her court-ordered 'random' drug test," the complaint states. "Shockingly, plaintiff later discovered that Turnage purposefully hid one of wife's positive drug test results. Although he shared the positive results of wife's random drug test with wife's attorney, he deliberately hid the results from plaintiff, plaintiff's lawyers and the court."
B.W.D. is seeking actual and punitive damages for breach of contract, fraudulent nondisclosure, breach of fiduciary duty, aiding, abetting, defamation, civil conspiracy, negligent misrepresentation and violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. He is represented by attorney Lawrence Friedman with Friedman & Feiger of Dallas.