An excerpt from Leigh Turner's letter to Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson, after Tuesday's revelations by Niki Gjere:
University officials like to emphasize that Dan Markingson died ten years ago. They claim his case is “old news.” However, if the numerous local citizens that have contacted Professor Carl Elliott and me are credible, and I believe they are, Dan Markingson is one person among numerous victims of psychiatric research misconduct. Some of these victims reportedly were harmed after Markingson’s death. Perhaps treating Markingson’s death in the CAFÉ study as ancient history not worth revisiting has enabled more patients to be harmed. Niki Gjere has the same concern. Asked by Mr. Baillon about her “greatest fear in the current environment,” she responded, “That it continues to happen. That patients are continuing to be harmed, that nothing’s been fixed.”
Responsible university presidents investigate reports of research misconduct. Unfortunately, President Kaler functions more as a college mascot – a Goldy Gopher in a suit and tie – than as an accountable leader. The University of Minnesota is never going to conduct an honest and thorough investigation of alleged psychiatric research misconduct. You need to do it. Any additional delays risk putting more vulnerable individuals at increased risk of harm.