I am a survivor of trafficking and human experimentation, beginning in childhood. It is quite rare for those of us who were used in still-classified experimentation programs to find evidence of what happened to us, but in 2017, an unforeseen event led to such a discovery.
In the spring of that year, I was watching The Keepers, a Netflix documentary about the unsolved murder of a nun in 1965, Sister Cathy Cesnik, when suddenly, I began to scream. On the screen was the face of a man whom victims identified as a member of the trafficking ring connected to the murder. A part of me recognized him.
It took a while to calm down, and even longer to work through my memories and the full context of my reaction. A few weeks later, I reached out to the citizen investigators still working on the case. Eventually I got in touch with Gemma Hoskins, one of a pair of former students of the nun who are committed to discovering who killed Sister Cathy. Gemma and I had a few long conversations, and in the summer of 2019, she and her podcast partner at the time, Shane Waters, interviewed me about my connection to the case.
The man I recognized in The Keepers was Dr. Richter, a gynecologist. Gemma followed up on what I shared with her by interviewing Richter’s medical assistant. The medical assistant confirmed my general observations about Richter’s character, and the detail that Richter had owned a “black box” medical monitoring device like the one I described. The assistant told Gemma that Richter had kept the box in his office, and forbade his staff from touching it.
Survivors featured in the documentary, and others who have not gone public, reported that the priest at the center of the ring, Father Joseph Maskell, used psychological manipulation techniques on them. He administered drugs, used hypnosis, and issued threats of physical harm, among other methods, to keep the girls silent. My recognition of Richter connected what Maskell was doing, at least tangentially, to a larger, national, still classified behavioral manipulation program.
Below are parts 1 and 2 of my interview with Gemma and Shane. If you’d like to know more of my story, you’ll find it at https://lynnsart.net
Survivors beware. There are descriptions of extremely traumatic experiences in the interview, and explicit/disturbing imagery on the website.