Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Letter to FBI General Counsel -- Paranoid Suspicions about F. Robert Wheeler, Esq.

October 1, 1996
3801 Connecticut Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20008-4530

Howard Shapiro, Esq.
FBI General Counsel
Washington, DC 20535

RE: Violence/Homicide Risk - D.C. Corporation Counsel Affirmation

Dear Mr. Shapiro:

This letter will serve to update a letter dated January 31, 1995 (copy enclosed) that I had forwarded to the Bureau’s Washington Field Office.

The letter lists the names of Akin Gump legal assistants who were later promoted to law clerk or associate positions. I would like to add the name of F. Robert Wheeler, III, who currently practices law at the firm.

To the best of my recollection Mr. Wheeler began his tenure at the firm in about late 1989 as a temporary legal assistant employed by the agency Personnel Pool. He was assigned to the client Eastern Airlines, and performed the task of tape-recording (and later proofreading the transcripts of) pre-recorded telephone messages disseminated nationwide by the Airline Pilots Association (so-called “Code-A-Phone” messages disseminated to Eastern Pilots by the union regarding ongoing labor-management disputes). I do not know what tasks Mr. Wheeler was assigned to after the firm ceased its representation of Eastern, in about mid-year 1990.

Mr. Wheeler was in his mid-thirties and had previously practiced law (possibly in the securities field?) and had also worked, if I recall correctly, as a fund raiser.

During the period late 1989 until at least mid-year 1990 Mr. Wheeler was assigned to office space on the ninth floor of the firm: a large office space that housed about six legal assistants including myself. Mr. Wheeler worked on a special shift--from approximately 7 a.m. until 3 p.m.; he arrived in the office long before other employees each morning.

On Mr. Wheeler’s birthday on May 19, 1990 fellow legal assistants arranged a small get-together in the office. Cake was served on party napkins that featured an image of “GI Joe.” (I believe that fellow legal assistants Kathy Reynolds had purchased the party accessories, and stated the following to explain the “GI Joe” theme: “The store didn’t have anything else.”)

I saved one of the “GI Joe” napkins, 1/ which I taped to the inside of a cabinet that was attached to my desk.

On October 29, 1991 Akin Gump terminated my employment, citing as its reasons concerns about my mental stability and potential for violence, which concerns arose out of my report of harassment to hiring partner Dennis M. Race, Esq. together with statements made by unspecified co-workers to Mr. Race that alleged that my behavior was frightening and disruptive to persons in my immediate surroundings.

Some time after my termination, F. Robert Wheeler, III was promoted to associate.

The U.S. Social Security Administration has determined that I became disabled as of October 29, 1991, the date of my job termination by Akin Gump. I continue to receive benefits paid by the U.S. Social Security Administration because of a mental illness that features the paranoid delusion that I was subjected to job harassment and discrimination at the law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld. See Freedman v. D.C. Department of Human Rights, Superior Court no. MPA 95-14 (final order issued June 10, 1996) ( xxxxx xxxxx xxxxxxx, J.).


Gary Freedman


1/ The “paper napkin” referred to at paragraph 36 of the enclosed document is the above-described “GI Joe” napkin. See Freedman v. D.C. Department of Human Rights, D.C. Superior Court MPA 95-14, record at 346-347 (litigation support employee Lutheria Harrison, whose name is cited at paragraph 36, was later promoted to legal assistant). At the time of the described incidents of harassment (during the week of March 11, 1991) I formed the paranoid belief that Wheeler might have been one of the persons who committed the acts, or that another employee had committed the acts: in either case with the intent to prompt me to complain to management with a report of harassment that could be dismissed by co-workers as the product of paranoia, jealousy, or racism. About three weeks after the incidents occurred, Akin Gump manager Malcolm Lassman held a legal assistant staff meeting, on the afternoon of Friday April 5, 1991, to respond to rumors current in the firm that Akin Gump had plans to lay off legal assistants in response to the economic recession.


Gary Freedman said...

Paranoid suspicions about F. Robert Wheeler, Esq.


Gary Freedman said...

34. In mid-March 1991 two apparently related incidents, perpetrated anonymously, occurred on successive days. One morning, probably during the week of March 11, 1991, upon arriving at my desk on the ninth floor, I noticed that someone had taken a dagger shaped letter opener from a drawer in my desk and had positioned it with the blade inserted between the pages and had positioned it with of a bound volume of documents and with the handle protruding from the bound volume. The letter opener, positioned as it was, gave the impression of a symbolic stabbing. The next morning, upon arriving at the office, I observed that someone had strewn my desk with pieces of a paper napkin, which had been shredded into tiny bits. Also, on a piece of 8.5” x 11” paper placed on my desk, someone had written in bold, upper case letters the phrase, “WHITE TRASH.”

[The above incidents may be evidence of a form of harassment known as gaslighting. See paragraph 16, above.]

(The bound volume of documents in which the letter opener had been placed was a compilation of exhibits for litigation concerning a client, LL&E. The 8.5” x 11” piece of paper on which the phrase “WHITE TRASH” had been written was the reverse side of a computer printout relating to the client LL&E. At that time I was working on LL&E under the direction of Ms. Lutheria Harrison, a black employee assigned to the litigation support group. It is possible that some third party perpetrated the acts described above in an attempt to prompt me to complain to a supervisory employee or member of management, with the ultimate intent to make it appear that I harbored a racial animus against black employees. Such contrived “evidence” of a putative racial animus could then be used to counteract any allegations I might make that other employees’ harassing acts were motivated by anti-Semitism. That is, other employees could argue that my allegations of anti-Semitism were simply a projection of my own unacknowledged racial bias.)

[See paragraph 31, above.]

[On Friday March 15, 1991 I was scheduled to see a Jewish psychologist Steven Stein, Ph.D. who specialized in work with Holocaust survivors. Dr. Stein had been recommended by the firm's employee assistance provider, Sheppard Pratt. I had the belief that my treating mental health professionals divulged the content of my reports to the firm's senior managers and that supervisory employees attempted to manipulate the content of what I reported to the mental health professionals. See paragraph 31, above.]

[On a Saturday morning in early March 1991 I telephoned my friend Craig W. Dye at his home. We talked for about a half hour. I formed the belief that Craig recorded that telephone conversation and thereafter provided Akin Gump a copy of the tape. I believe that the tape of that telephone call was played for Bob Strauss. The tape of the telephone call if played for Akin Gump's supervisors would have enraged them. See paragraph 29, above.]


Gary Freedman said...

"The behavior can range from subtle — constantly invading an employee’s cubicle, say — to overt, as in repeatedly pressuring an employee to quit or retire. Bullies rarely become truly violent, studies have shown, but the WBI reports that bullying can be a prolonged pattern of behavior toward a victim — lasting, on average, 16.5 months."