JW Bulletin

Jehovah's Witnesses in the Media

Translation: Corato Live – 17th November 2018

Corato Live – 17th November 2018


Died after refusing treatment, her husband: «Do not file the investigation»

The death of Maria Gentile dates back to March 2015. February 11, 2019 hearing to discuss the opposition to the request of the Prosecutor

He healed every kind of treatment that included blood transfusions or blood products, not to contravene the dictates of his religious faith, perhaps “plagiarized” by someone. Now it will be the investigating judge of the Court of Trani, Rossella Volpe, to decide whether the death of Maria Gentile, which occurred March 11, 2015, was the result of an incitement to suicide or whether the woman, Jehovah’s Witness, has consciously chosen not to undergo treatment for his religious belief and, therefore, to die.

On February 11, 2019 the council chamber is set to decide whether the investigation, opened at the end of 2015 by the Prosecutor of Trani, should be closed, as requested by the prosecutor Alessandro Pesce, or move forward, as claimed by the woman’s husband , Salvatore Cialdella, who filed a lawsuit against the carabinieri asking to ascertain the responsibilities of the death.

The investigating judge could decide for final filing, or arrange for the prosecutor to investigate further or even formulate a forced imputation against the only suspect with the hypothesis of instigation to suicide, Anna Gentile, sister and (from a certain point onwards) a woman’s support administrator. The setting up of the council chamber was necessary because her husband formally opposed the request for filing the pm, filed last July.

According to what Salvatore Cialdella reconstructed in the lawsuit presented in September 2015 to the Carabinieri of Corato station, Maria Gentile needed a liver transplant to treat her condition. But the woman – again as claimed by her husband – initially showed willingness to undergo treatment, then refused after feeling with her sister or Jehovah’s Witnesses, because they were planning to use blood and / or blood products.

According to Cialdella, moreover, the physical and clinical situation in which he found himself had made Maria Gentile – as he wrote in the lawsuit – “increasingly influenced and submissive in the face of pressures”. Regarding the psychic conditions of women and their ability to choose if and how to treat themselves, there are, however, two contrasting reports: that of the psychiatrist, in May 2013, he spoke of depressive syndrome in progress; that of the coroner, of February 2015, attested to the woman’s ability also to self-determine with respect to the disease.

Cialdella, moreover, was ousted from any possibility of deciding on the care of his wife, because the woman had expressed her intentions (with signed document) compared to medical treatment that included blood transfusions, with the simultaneous designation of a support administrator (in 2010 he pointed to the head of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Corato, while in 2014 he named his sister.

So it was that on 2 March 2015 the woman was discharged from the hospital and entrusted to her sister, to die then the next 11 March. He could not do anything, even though convinced that if his wife – he wrote in the lawsuit – “had undergone the necessary medical treatment from the beginning, would not have come to death”. For this reason, now that the prosecution has requested the dismissal of the investigation, Salvatore Cialdella (assisted by lawyers Nico Regina and Dario Lafasciano) does not intend to give up.

* all translations provided on JWBulletin.com are for information purposes only and are sourced from automated translation services.  These are not checked for accuracy.  To ensure accuracy, please refer to the original language text.

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