Petition 5: the Johnson Petition

Additional commentary by Timothy Horrigan
(member of the House Petitions & Redress Committee)

David Johnson filed petitions in 2009 and 2010, and he was the prime mover behind two Bills of Address which I got mixed up in back in 2010. Johnson came back in 2011 with even more charges against his adversary "Master Cross" and several other public officials involved in his custody case.

See also:



TO: The Honorable House of Representatives

FROM; Petitioner Representative Alfred Baldasaro, Rock. 3

DATE: April 26, 2011

SUBJECT: Grievance of David Johnson

Your Petitioner, Representative Baldasaro, on behalf of David Johnson of Londonderry, hereinafter presents the following summary of his grievance against the State of New Hampshire, Marital Master Bruce DalPra, Marital Master Philip Cross, Judge Lucinda Sadler, Judge Michael Ryan, Judge James Michalik, guardian ad litem Bruce Wechsler, and Administrative Director of the Family Division Judge Edwin Kelly and invokes the constitutional authority and duty of the Honorable House of Representatives pursuant to Articles 31 and 32 of the New Hampshire Constitution to bring about redress:

Grievance for repeated violations of his due process rights, violations of the standards of best interest of the child, violations of the New Hampshire child support guidelines, violations of the United States Supreme Court ruling in Hicks vs. Feiock, 485 U.S. 624 (1988), and abuses of discretion and power, including conspiracy to commit fraud, caused by the above-named parties, resulting in permanent damage to a child and her father and their relationship.

Wherefore, your Petitioner prays that the House of Representatives consider this proposed remedy:

  1. Introduce legislation to:

    1. Facilitate the return of custody of David Johnson's daughter to David Johnson; and

    2. Facilitate the removal of guardian ad litem Bruce Wechsler and the prevention of Mr. Wechsler from acting as a guardian ad litem in this state; and

    3. Redress all of David Johnson's financial damages and losses, including but not limited to, any arrearages owed, and require that treble damages be imposed against the above-named parties for all Constitutional violations and legal expenses; and

    4. Require any federal funds designated for the New Hampshire Judicial Branch to be placed in the General Fund and disbursed by the Finance Committee to the Judicial Branch.

    5. Require all arrest warrants to meet Constitutional standards and require periodic audits of the Constitutionality of arrest warrants by the Committee for Constitutional Review and Statutory Recodification.

    6. Require an audit of all Judicial rules by the Committee for Constitutional Review and Statutory Recodification.

    7. Amend or repeal Family Court rule 1.2 relative to waiver of rules.

    8. [subpoena "sealed envelope"] and;

  2. Commence Articles of Impeachment against Marital Master Bruce DalPra, Marital Master Philip Cross, Judge Lucinda Sadler, Judge Michael Ryan, Judge James Michalik, and Judge Edwin Kelly; and

  3. Introduce a Constitutional Amendment Concurrent Resolution to repeal Part Second, Article 73-a of the New Hampshire Constitution.

Respectfully submitted by Petitioner Representative Baldasaro on Behalf of David Johnson.

This petition hung around for the entire biennium. Along the way, it led to a significant change in the House Rules. Rule 66 was enacted to allow committees to ask for subpoenas. The majority of the Redress Committee voted to have the legendary "sealed envelope" from this case subpoenaed. The envelope will almost certainly never actually be subpoenaed, especially now that the petition has been disposed of. The House Rules Committee unanimously dismissed the case "without prejudice" on September 6, 2012: their main rationale was the fact that we never sent a written request explaining why we needed to open the envelope. They also brought up the rather obvious fact that we managed to dispose of the petition without seeing what was inside the sealed envelope. It is blatantly obvious that the leadership (of both parties) simply didn't want to subpoena Johnson's envelope. I expected Chairman Ingbretson to reconvene a lame-duck session of the committee to draft a written request, but he never did.

Be that as it may , on August 23, 2012, a pair of reports finally appeared in the House Calendar.

PETITION # 5 grievance of David Johnson.  (Report filed 8/21/12)

Grievance Founded with Recommendations.

Committee Majority Findings:

After hearing the testimony of the Petitioner and seeing court and other documents, the Redress of Grievances Committee finds that numerous and inexplicable wrongs took place in the Derry District Court Family Division under Marital Master Philip Cross, and under the supervision of Judges Sadler, Michalik and Ryan in which a child clearly has become the victim of the court's failures of due process.  Laws and due process were abridged multiple times including but not limited to:

  1. Changing parenting time without evidentiary hearings;

  2. One-sided prosecution for contempt including against a father for taking his child to a hospital for needed emergency medical care;

  3. Basing decisions on known falsehoods;

  4. Ordering child support without required Child Support Guidelines Worksheets and against laws with respect to payments by the primary custodian;

  5. Creating arrearages based on the then unlawfully formed custody payments;

  6. Jailing father for contempt for not paying arrearages on the unlawful grounds that he was able to pay the arrearages by borrowing money from a relative;

  7. Refusing to act on repeated motions by counsel for findings of facts and rulings of law;

  8. Repeatedly failing to act in the best interests of the child;

  9. Allowing a guardian ad litem (GAL) to prevent parent/child visits on the basis of secret information that the court repeatedly refuses to show the petitioner;

  10. Allowing same GAL to indefinitely fail to locate the therapeutic psychological counseling for a child that he had been ordered by the court to do;

  11. Allowing the same GAL to misrepresent demonstrated facts regarding phoning between child and parent

  12. Holding the petitioner in contempt criminally in a civil court;

  13. Failure to punish perjury and false swearing, thus impuning the dignity of the court;

  14. In the case of Judge Ryan, refusing to recuse himself, though admittedly in conflict, until immediately after making a decisive order removing a parent from primary custody; and

  15. In the case of Judge Michalik, for ordering specific payments by the Petitioner to a counsel who was already working pro bono for the other parent. The resulting effect generally has been court-ordered child abuse in the denial of her access to a loved parent for a period of now over two years. This has become a common report before this Committee:  that the family division of the court, established to protect children, actually inflicts injury on the child in an attempt to force particular parental behavior. 


The Committee recommends that in the face of numerous similar complaints evidencing an apparently widespread arbitrariness with respect to both rules and law of many of the officials in and around the Family Division of the Courts the House must: 

  1. Investigate into the Family Division  to determine the extent of and the causes for such an unacceptable situation as soon as possible; 

  2. Subpoena the evidence that resulted in the separation of the Petitioner from his daughter to confirm its existence and character; and 3. Enable Petitioner's divorce be held de novo in the Superior Court. 

The Committee further recommends:  

  1. Amend the divorce statutes to enable appeal to the Superior Court;

  2. Amend divorce statutes to allow the parties to enter binding arbitration independent of the state;

  3. Introduce legislation to enable each parent in a divorce have the appointed GAL permanently dismissed without cause at least once;

  4. Amend the statutes to allow citizens party to a case to enter into private prosecution of perjury and false swearing;

  5. Amend the statutes to make GALs accountable for violation of rules, orders and statutes;

  6. Amend the statutes to prohibit the use of visitation and elements of a parental plan to force the signing of GAL stipulations;

  7. Investigation of Attorney Ross by the Attorney General for perjury;

  8. Investigation of Attorney Wechsler by the Attorney General for perjury pending subpoena of the alleged evidence in recommendations 2 and

  9. Pending the adoption by the people of CACR 26, amending the statutes to modify and enforce court rules.

Vote 7-3.

Rep. Daniel Itse for the Majority of the Committee.


Grievance Unfounded

Committee Minority Findings:

Mr. Johnson's petition remaining from 2011 is a continuing battle in his 12-year war over his divorce and subsequent child custody issues before the family court.  There is no indication that anything will change regardless of what action the Redress of Grievances Committee recommends.  Mr. Johnson offered lengthy testimony but some key points were not documented.  In particular, he [never] provided a detailed explanation as to why he was incarcerated, supposedly at the behest of a marital master.  In the absence of evidence, the Minority reluctantly concludes that the marital master acted properly.

It is always unfortunate when adults cannot work with each other when their children are involved.  Even the paperwork submitted by Mr. Johnson indicates he was not paying child support and following the custody plan. There are steps that must be followed in the course of legal proceedings even when the individuals are not in agreement.  When one defies court orders there usually are consequences.  Also, even when parents are not agreeable, the state has an obligation to protect the best interest of the child.

The remedies sought in this petition, for the most part, are in violation of the NH Constitution.  Another request is that a constitutional amendment be introduced to repeal Part Second, Article 73-a which will be on the November 2012 ballot

Rep. Sandra Keans for the Minority of the Committee

2011 House Petitions:

See Also:


The Forgotten Liars

2011 Petitions