In what may be a fatal blow to anti-wireless activist Arthur Firstenberg’s lawsuit against his neighbor for her use of wireless devices like her cell phone and computer, District Judge Sarah Singleton has ruled that scientific evidence does not support electromagnetic sensitivity.
Singleton ruled this morning that “studies have failed to provide clear support for a causal relationship between electromagnetic fields and complaints of EMS.”
The Court’s ruling was in response to motions filed by defense attorneys arguing that no valid scientific studies support Firstenberg’s claims that his former neighbor Raphaela Montribot’s wifi, computers and even dimmer switches cause him physical symptoms ranging from hip pain to heart damage. Firestenberg sought damages from Montribot and also named her landlord Robin Leith as a defendant.
Firstenberg’s lawyer, Lindsay Lovejoy, couldn’t be reached for comment.
The Graeser Law Firm, which represents Monribot, posted the following on its website today:
Judge Singleton carefully analyzed the evidence submitted by both sides and found that “there seems to be no correlation between exposure and degree or certainty of harm.” She relied extensively on the position of the World Health Organization, which concluded that “well controlled and conducted double-blind studies have shown that symptoms do not seem to be correlated with EMF exposure… these symptoms may be due to pre-existing psychiatric conditions as well as stress reactions as a result of worrying about believed EMF health effects, rather than EMF exposure.”
The Court had previously ruled that Mr. Firstenberg could not introduce evidence of his own private, uncontrolled testing because he refused to be tested by our expert, as the judge had ordered.
In early 2010 Firstenberg, a well-known anti-wireless activist sued neighbor Raphaela Monribot… for $1 million for “injuries, illness, pain and suffering” and another $430,000 for loss in value of his home (he claims that the devices rendered him homeless). We have asserted all along that Firstenberg’s symptoms were related to a psychological disorder and other health problems that he has, and the Court has agreed with us. Mr. Firstenberg may believe his claim, but the science is not on his side.
We are happy that the Court elevated science and common sense over paranoia and ignorance. We took this case because we wanted to do our part to see science prevail. People are entitled to believe what they wish. However, if they want to sue their neighbor for $1 million, they need to have reliable scientific evidence on their side. Firstenberg did not, and we are happy that our client’s position has been vindicated, although she ended up moving out of her house, and leaving Santa Fe, during the course of litigation.
Quote from Raphaela Monribot: “”It took three years to arrive at what common sense would have easily dictated. I am very proud of my lawyers who took this challenge and prevailed, because it seems as if common sense is indeed very hard to legally prove. Thus, despite the heavy toll that the case took on me, I am glad and proud to have experienced going through the process and hope that the outcome will have favorable consequences for the community of Santa Fe and beyond. May the right of the individual to use everyday technology in the privacy of his home always prevail against attacks of activists who wish to force their agenda on the rest of the world.”