Phoenix Veterans Affairs

Phoenix Veterans Affairs Sociopath Retaliates Against Blind Whistleblower, Gets $200k Paid Leave Over 18 Months

Phoenix Veterans Affairs

Benjamin KrauseCongress was outraged yesterday with new information from Phoenix Veterans Affairs showing agency leadership failed to hold apparent sociopaths accountability for retaliation against whistleblowers in Phoenix. Despite a year old audit indicating two such sociopaths should receive punishment or termination, no action was taken.

A sociopath is a person with a personality disorder that displays extreme antisocial attitudes and behavior with a lack of conscience. Doesn’t that fit the description of many VA leadership gracing the news as of later?

RELATED: VA Spins, Second Whistleblower Stops Illegal Plot


The first executive fitting that description (sociopath), Lance Robinson, associate director of Phoenix VA, was placed on paid leave for retaliating against Paula Pedene, a blind public affairs officer. Pedene reported higher-ups at Phoenix misused substantial amounts of money. Robinson stripped her of her duties and sent her to work in the basement library to teach her a lesson for reporting fraud.

Robinson was since removed from his job and put on paid leave in May 2014 earning $137,000 per year for the past 18 months.


The other apparent sociopath, Dr. Darren Deering, chief of staff at Phoenix VA, lashed out at whistleblower Dr. Katherine Mitchell for reporting the wait list scandal.

Some of you may recall Dr. Deering sitting along side now terminated Sharon Helman on CNN when the scandal first broke. Dr. Deering put Dr. Mitchell on paid leave and eventually forced her out.

RELATED: Sharon Helman Scandal Reveals Classic VA Corruption

According to FedSmith, Dr. Deering earned a cool $246,000 last year as chief of staff engaged in covering up the wait list scandal and behaving like a sociopath.

The Office of Special Counsel represented the two whistleblowers and reached a settlement for each on the harassment, but without terminating the wrongdoers, any settlement will be ineffective at righting the wrong.

Has anyone identified a solution? Perhaps the only move is a Civil RICO against these perpetrators?


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  1. I think that we are witness to a huge group of people that understand that their jobs are no longer necessary, given that the nation is now set up on a large scale to serve the population with medical care in the community. The VHA personell understand that if the VHA suddenly shut their doors that the needs of the veterans could just as cost effectively, perhaps obscenely so, be served in the community by doctors that are accountable for any misconduct.

    They understand that they are in a dysfunctional group of people that down to the lowest level owes their allegiance to the brotherhood of the union. Even the response to a civil rights complaint warns the veteran, “…please keep in mind that we will investigate this matter with the best interests of the VHA in mind…”

    Think about that. I made a legitimate Civil Rights complaint. Their response was, “Ok, but be warned, we will act in our own best interests, and not yours.” Ok. well then, who will act in the government with the governed’s best interest in mind? If we cannot make a legitimate Constitutional complaint to a neutral party in the matter, then why on Earth do they even bother offering the complaint forms? In all of the history of the VHA, has ANY civil rights complaint ever been validated? I bet not one has, because the only way to make one is to send it to the person(s) that the complaint is against! Furthermore, they tell you flat out that your interests take second place to the agencies interests.

    Imagine making a complaint to the Police that the Mayor fondled your groin. Imagine getting a letter from the Mayor who cites the complaint, forwarded to the Mayor by the police, and promises to investigate it with the Office of the Mayor’s best interests in mind. Same thing, only in the case of VHA it is a deadly game because they can, will, and do terminate care for any reason, anyone with a friend on the Disruptive Behavior Committee can dream up.

    These people know that their jobs are the gravy of sloth. Sleeping on the job, sex on the job, and misfeasance happen in every human endeavor, and are dealt with in a capitalist society through economic incentive. VHA understands that the economic incentive is reversed in their case: keeping customers alive and happy is contrary to the economic incentive that normal doctors have. In the case of VHA, the more customers they keep coming back, the more likely they won’t meet performance goals for bonuses. VHA knows that rude behavior drives away customers which benefits them – the opposite of an economy based transaction for health care. A VHA employe operates without fear of consequence. An honest person in such a place inevitably succumbs (or leaves) to the culture of unaccountability. Think about it: if you tell a child that they shouldn’t take cookies without asking, but if they do, that Mom will make sure Dad doesn’t punish them…. how many cookies are going to be left in a few days? Even good children need boundaries. VHA in childlike glee, celebrates and promotes unaccountability as a hiring perk.

    The VHA was a horrible experiment carried on now for generations – and the cookie jar is getting crumb bare empty.

    1. You need to visit the Veterans Memorial graveyard in PHX AZ to see where ALL the victims of the PHX VAMC, end up…Serious, see 2010 Viet Nam vets…it is a mass grave.

  2. If these buttwipes had done this to me, I would have physically kicked their asses. We would go out behind the building and take care of that problem. Who the hell do these people think they are? Let some of them get a severe asswhoopin and see if things don’t change…I get really, really, really upset when you mess with my Family or my ability to feed my Family and I will make your life miserable, first with more paperwork that you have ever seen and if that doesn’t fix the problem or they wanted to retaliate and fire me, then I am going to kick their asses physically. What a bunch of losers.

  3. Benjamin-

    Great “Bad VA Art” today. Would that be the “movie poster” for the VA’s “Game of Thugs”, their take on “Game of Thrones”? LOL!

    Sharon Helman always has that Disney “Mad Madam Mim” look…and am not speaking of ‘anger type of mad’.

    Maybe McDonald’s Disney-fication of the VA already exists in a ‘Life Imitates Art’ kind of sick way?

  4. Dr. Darren Deering, of the PHX VA is responsible for a certain vet receiving a dangerous drug dose IV, causing near death & suffering to the vet and family. To cover this thoughtless action he filed a false report against the family, accusing the family of attempting harm on the vet. D.Deering patient records need to be pulled and reviewed for harm to vets.

    1. They will and do falsely accuse veterans also.we’ve had family members post on this site how higher management claims they have done things to them also.

      I’m a former VA employee and had a vindictive employee retaliate against me and higher management from the director.chief of staff and the rest of the disruptive committee joined in and let her lye about the disruptive behavior and never required the employee to provide proof of the disruptive behavior.

      Higher management also could not provide any proof.but they punished me anyway and wrote on my chart.if I’m ever reported again.I would be arrested.federal charges placed upon me and banishment from all VA care.

      Ever is a long time.don’t you think.

      People must be held accountable for their inaction to get the truth and noting done to employees who falsely accuse veterans or other employees of wrong doing and are not required to provide proof of the allegations.

      1. False reporting without sutanstiation is flagrant, deliberate harm, inflicted by staff to vets is another indication of crime at PHX VA


    1. There is a office does not want to hear from veterans. They don’t care about or anyone else.

      I wrote.emailed and McDonald did not of his employes called and lyed to me on the phone about an employee not working for the VA any longer.

      That employee does still work for the VA and is a dangerous person.Evil.

      McDonald’s office was informed that the employee is still employed and his employee was lyed to.

      Now they know the truth and now refuse to acknowledge this and are doing nothing about it.

      So contacting his office.would only fill up his trash can. I have no faith in him or his employees.they don’t give to cents if veterans are being harmed as long as they are getting their pay checks.

      Veterans are being iqnored and will be continued to be ignored.remember he said it’s MY VA.

    2. You DO know that VA Sec. McDonald has already given out ‘a’ cell # but from what I have read, no one is returning calls as his office ONCE DID when he first was appointed to position. Now that VA Under Sec. General Hickey resigned, am not thinking anyone will get any calls back or even through at this point.
      You can find that # through a search on here or probably a simple google search but it was toward the very beginning of this year or look for this blog article on here where “McDonald Misspoke”. Good luck with that. Am thinking what would be just as effective in reaching his attention is two empty soup cans and a length of string….high tech even for the VA.

      I am still wondering if General Allison Hickey’s resignation was for nothing now that it appears those scheming VA SEC Employee Woman that Plead The Fifth are getting off scot-free.
      Anyone else wonder about that twilight zone period of just recent? Anyone wish to know more about why she REALLY resigned? Was she forced to? A Deal?

      1. Sorry to bust your bubble but I am one who DID receive a call back from McDonalds office and within 2 weeks my problem was solved with one being demoted, and three being told that if they EVER so much as disrespect another Veteran again, they would ALL be terminated with prejudice. So far each and every month I receive a call from the Ft Wayne VA from a VERY nervous person who double checks to make sure I am receiving the medication I need to survive, and doing the questioning in a very shaky voice.

        I cannot say that this happens to everyone who calls, but it did in fact happen to me and my problem has been resolved.

      2. hear they helped you.if you don’t mind what type of problem did you have.

        Did McDonald speak with you directly.

        He did say one veteran at a time.

        I did what you said to do and I was contacted by his office and was told the employee I was complaining about NO longer works for the VA.this was told to me twice by his employee.

        After I told his employee Stephanie that the employee is still employed and that she had been lyed to by higher management.

        Since I told them they were lyed to.they haven’t answered back.why do you think that is.

        I was polite.not disruptive.

      3. For what trying to being the truth out. The disruptive committee is not legal when they can punish someone and do so with out any proof and then not give the veteran any way of defending themselves from right out lyes.

        If someone is disruptive anywhere it’s the justice department to find the truth. Not some ect.

        The VA has no business framing veterans and the veteran never getting a say about it.

        That’s like me blaming you of disruptive behavior and your punished and have nothing to say about it.

        That’s not right and if they don’t give people the right to defend themselves.then do away with the constitution and all civil rights.

        Don’t veterans deserve a fair trial.

        Blacklist.what is the real meaning and is it legal.

      4. The problem I had was that I needed a drug called Heprin to help clean a power port I have in my chest. I had the port placed because I have PTSD and cannot deal with needles as I go into a fight or flight and have actually taken swings at doctors and nurses at a VA hospital and it took about an hour for them to calm me down so they suggested that I get this put into my chest. Even then it took 2 years or better before I could even work up the courage to do it and even then they had to sedate me so much that I could not drive home and was loopy for three days.

        The VA Pharmacist refused to fill the doctors order for the heprin three times and it was fast becoming either I get this medication or I end up with my veins starting to deteriorate and the very distinct possibility of a clot breaking lose and causing a major stroke. Not to mention this was practicing medicine without a license on a federal reservation, which is a major felony.

        Long story short I called the number and spoke directly with McDonalds office and explained that this was my life we were dealing with and either we could settle this like gentlemen or they could do nothing, in which case I would file a multi million dollar federal felony lawsuit against the VA for lack of service and attempted homicide as well as practicing medicine without a license on a federal reservation and the stink of this would make the days of the secret lists seem like the good old days. I also told his office I had already spoken to VISN 11-VAIG-Veterans Committees in both the House and the Senate and the Congressional committees had stated that either the VA do something about this or they would, and the VA would not like it one bit.

        A few days later I received a call from McDonalds office again and it was all “yes SIR” and “Roger that SIR”. Less then 5 days later I received a phone call from the VA where I receive my treatment in Ft Wayne Indiana. And the person on the other end of the line was so nervous her voice was shaking like she was about ready to cry. She immediately made the order and I have received my medication every month since. And in fact she calls me back EVERY month to make sure I have received the medication and the one time I didnt, they had it hand delivered to me.

        The long and short of it, is the Pharmacist that refused to fill the prescription is no longer the head person, he was demoted and warned that if they ever found him doing this again he would be terminated with prejudice meaning that he loses everything and would not be rehired by the VA anywhere in the US. The Hospital director was reassigned as she knew about it and did nothing to stop it, and she was warned that one more complaint about her and she was terminated with prejudice. The Chief of Staff and the Patient Rep were both told that if they disrespected just one more vet, that they would be terminated with prejudice, and that BOTH of them were on probation until the VA decided it was enough. The VA at that location was required to install a new phone system so that no matter what number you call, you would be sent to a live person or there would be an answer machine there and the person who had the answering machine would be required to contact you back no more then 24 hours later.

        All I know is when I go to the hospital for treatment now, its like I am royalty as it seems they fall all over themselves to help me. At first it was funny, now its getting tiresome as I dont like being fawned over. Just do your job and we will get along fine.

      5. That was an implant.don’t you worry about infections. Its good they listened and sad that veterans even have to make complaints.

        I think today anyway.I feel so worn out.knowing that veterans are being harmed and it seems it Will continue.

        Is that medicine a blood thinner.

      6. Sorry no. Yes it was an implant but if it is not cleaned on a regular basis it can start necrosis of the vein.

        Maintenance of I.P.

        If the I.P. is not being used for infusion of medications or I.V. fluids, the port should be accessed once per month for a terminal flush with 10 cc NS and 5 cc heparin (100 units/cc); see access/de-access procedure above.

        They need this to be flushed on a regular basis as blood collects in this port and then congeals, meaning it becomes a clot. If the blood is not removed then the clot starts to degrade and break apart and rot. And the last thing you want is for a blood clot to break free from this and travel down your vein to your heart as the chances of you surviving this would be less then 15% And this is what I have been told by Oncology nurses as well as lab nurses and the surgeon who put it in as well as my VA PCP and my personal no VA PCP. I figure its better safe then sorry and after a month or so, there is no pain, all you feel is a slight pressure and thats it. SOOOO much better then getting an IV every time they want blood.

        And yes Heprin is a blood thinner. They inject the heprin into the port and then they inject the saline into the port and then suck out all the “bad blood” and the vein that its attached to then fills it with “good blood” that can be accessed for any reason. And when I have my next surgery, instead of poking me in the arm or the hand, all they need do is access the port and I am good to go.

      7. Your right.merry Christmas to you and your family members. I have a friend a very good guy and he needed a heart transplant and with prayers.he got one.

        Christ.helped him and he will help us.if we believe and I for one do.

        Merry Christmas to all !

      8. That’s easy…Did you ever take a course of chemo at the PHX VA, and don’t have cancer ? Or how bout’ get a lethal injection from the Dr. put on paid medical leave…and then they try to go after your family cuz the Dr. nearly kills you?

  6. I need to ask a question.last night I was contacted by phone from JD Powers.

    The person on phone stated he was from JD Powers and doing a survey on a phone call I made to the VA on the 9th of December and started asking questions.

    1. Why did you call the VA.explain what you were calling them about.what did you want.

    I asked who jd powers was.a firm that does surves.

    When asked what did I call for.I felt very I told them.that they had the information since they called me.

    Seemed they were trying to get personal information and I told them.I didn’t know what they were talking about.

    Why is the VA using these people to do a servey on veterans and then ask questions.they have no business knowing.

    They said ok.if you don’t remember the phone can’t answer the survey questions.

    1. James,
      I never answer any questions from people I don’t know over the phone.
      At the very beginning, what I do or say is;
      “Excuse me. Let me attach my recording device!”
      Usually what happens is, they hang up.
      If they continue. I start asking the questions. I want to know their FULL NAME. Where their located out of. If the number is one where I can reach a supervisor. There’s many questions I ask.
      Usually the caller gives up and hangs up.
      That’s what I do!

      1. The VA uses JD Powers to evaluate the public contact representatives at the call center. You were selected randomly to evaluate their service. That’s all there is to it.

      2. Why do I not get a call from the VA to answer my is jd powers going to do anything.

        Now the VA is using another company to find out if the veteran is satisfied with the VA.

        Duuuuuu NO.they can’t even call themselves to find out what the veteran needs.

        What a waste of my time and your money.

      3. I never answer any such ‘Surveys’ because there once was a time that I DID answer such surveys and guess what happens? They end-up selling YOUR *good contact info* to MANY other telemarketers and other pariah of personal information and our sanity and sanctity of a home without such invasions.
        I now simply never fill any out given to me at various civilian Dr. visits and find them just as invasive as the Political ones that always precedes an Election on a Local, State, or National Level. They ALL sell your information, even if you specifically ask/tell them NOT to. Next thing you know you end up getting calls from a ‘grass or mud hut’ from Africa trying to steal your personal info or bank info PRETENDING to be these very ‘Survey/Poll Takers’…nope, never ever again.

        It’s *never* simply an innocent survey. That’s exactly what they WANT you to think.
        It’s an entirely different world in this ‘Information Age’ and everyone’s ‘Info’ is worth “something to someone’…but they never ever take your sanity and wishes to be left alone in consideration.
        My thoughts and rant. Your Mileage May Vary, but has been mine and many other’s experiences.
        I like crazyelf’s approach to telling them you need to connect your recording device…but know that some of these asswipes even *sample your voice*…can only let your imagination wander why they would do such a thing.
        My trust level is very, very low these days. Probably has contributed to me being single and no dating now for 8 years…people can really suck, and not in a good way.

  7. Dear Mr. Krause:

    Now I know what the problem is at the VA. when upper echelon is composed of psychopaths we can not expect any relief, and they don’t deserve prison what thhey need is psychiatric evaluation from the highest on down.

    1. Frank,
      I believe our prisons have “mental wards”. You know, like the one in California that is housing Charlie Manson.

  8. Hello Everyone:

    Each time I read something like this, it reminds me why so many things happens to so many Veterans. I think you will all remember my complaints about Home Instead Senior Care, (HISC) of Fredericksburg, VA. Well it continues.

    Here is why a company contracted with the VA with complaints all over this company continues to rob the taxpayers.
    In a letter from the Director of the Hunter Holmes McGuire VAMC writes:

    “Mrs. Fields-Wilkins was informed that if necessary HISC could exercise its contractual right to discharge a patient for noncompliance with agency requirements which prevent agency staff from providing personal care services.”

    So once again, the only people that did anything wrong were
    the patient (an 82 year old Vietnam Veteran) and his spouse who is also a Veteran. I have been searching the FAR and have not yet found where contractors have this authority. This takes this issue beyond Joseph and me. It takes it to the Procurement Process, protocol, abuse of power and beyond. These are civilians making decisions on federal contracts that provide services to Veterans. But these same people can determine when to discontinue those very services.

    Sadly as long as everyone has the ability to blame the innocence this will continue.

    There were no staff members prevented from providing personal care. The person working in our home was never prevented from performing her job. She was in our home for almost a year. There were never complaints made about this person until she went into my personal cell phone and deleted data, text messages, phone logs and pictures of my husband. That took place one month before the contract ended abruptly.

    This is a smoke screen to cover up how this company is obtaining contracts that should not be given to them.

    We are working on staging a protest with picket signs of this company. It will take place early in January.

    This is a continuance of Dr. Kimberly Baptiste.

    1. Carolyn,
      There was a “whistleblower” of one of the governmental security agencies who claimed the government erased four to five years worth of important data off his phone, Ipad and computer.
      I’m not sure how they did it. But he claims they did.

      Also, my wife and I wish you luck on your protest.

  9. @namnibor
    Here’s a fact:
    Prior to Reagan being elected. He sent a letter, (hand written), to the “Air Traffic Controllers Union”,(asking for “their support), saying how he would “protect” the employees AND get them better hours and equipment. I know this is fact because it was on one of his son’s websites. And, I “downloaded” (PDF) it!
    We all know how that ended!

    I too send any and all “articles” concerning egregious acts committed by ANY and ALL government agencies to Mr. Trump’s email address. My wife also sends many articles to as many government agencies as she can. We also send articles to our local news sources. Yet, many never make it onto the Right Wing Liberal news.

    This “newest” revelation by VA is but a continuation of what’s been going on within VA for decades. It came out, from the GAO, last month I believe, on the “total workforce” for the government being “on paid administrative leave” stands at 6,000+. Out of that figure, around 2,600 are VA employees. Many have been paid for a few months up to a few years.
    I don’t believe the “Veterans Committee” has addressed this issue, as of today. I may be wrong though. Maybe these “figures” should be addressed.

    I also believe – POTUS, Congress and the Senate should be held “In Contempt” by veterans and the taxpayers. This, for their incompetence and their “Failure to fullfill their Oath of Office!”

    Also, Mr. Comey, the FBI Director, has indeed gone against the White House many times now. According to Judge Pirroe (sic) has stated; Mr. Comey, the FBI Director, “has a 10 year contract!” Therefore, no matter who the “sitting President is” he cannot be fired!” (paraphrasing). I believe this is why he commands his Department employees to do their jobs!
    Trust me, brother, they are doing just that!

    If something isn’t done immediately by this alleged Veterans Committee. Then we, veterans and taxpayers, will see a continuation of illegal act committed within VA. As I’ve said, send Federal Marshals to each VA Facility and start arresting the reprobates. It’s not hard to do “right”! Once these individuals are sitting in a jail cell, watch them start “singing”!!!!!

    Lastly, screw the unions.

  10. What do I think? I think, as namnibor and others have said, a thorough audit is going to have to take place. An audit by an outside source. Then, when all the reprobates are found, enter each establishment with Federal Marshals and start arresting each one of them. Charge them with Federal Crimes.
    I believe when these individuals are sitting in a jail cell, they might start turning against one another. Watch the rats start “abandoning ship”! That’s when people will start taking notice over who the bad guys really are.
    McDonald, Gibson and many others just might get the picture that “If something isn’t done NOW, their jobs will be on the line!”

    How much more will the taxpayers and veterans take before something is done to corrupt employees in the VA?

    1. @carzyelf-


      I have been calling the VA’s behavior on this blog for a while as BOTH Sociopathic and it’s evil twin called Borderline Personality…it’s adversarial nature and lack of moral compass in willingly committing fraud, even directly contributing to fraud, having thugs working as med tech’s that beat-up patients and committed rapists that have indeed sexually harassed female AV employees and VA continues to employ, promote, and give huge payouts for their nefarious devotion to the ‘Dark Side’. (The VA).

      Pres. Ronald Reagan fired all those striking air traffic controller Union employees…I cannot but think he would do same with the VA while enjoying a handful of gourmet jelly beans.
      We need real leadership with BALLS like that again. We have Leadership Eunuchs as it stands. No BALLS. No conscience. No Remorse. Sociopathic.

      Sending this stuff to all candidates, and Trump’s veteran email. We should all do so, regardless of political affiliation or lack thereof just to get the veteran issues in forefront.
      We may even have a potential ally in the FBI Chief since he has gone totally against Obumer on allowing potential terrorists in and is quite vocal…since the DOJ is being sent to wherever Black Lives Matter is…Baltimore now, and are ignoring VA/VHA criminal acts at Federal Levels…perhaps it’s time to try the FBI??? Just my thing to toss out there as an idea for justice and accountability.

      AUDIT! GIVE THE VA AN ENEMA!!! It may take industrial equipment because it very impacted and full of $HIT.:-)

      1. I wish I was computer savvy like crazyelf an namnibor so I could send this stuff to all these officials because I sure would and I know it would help as there is power in numbers. I guess I’m getting too old to be that savvy all I can say is keep up the good work I will do all I can to try and help but when it comes to boots on the ground I’ll be right there with you but I think we all need to head to Washington to do any good just my thoughts.

      2. Ronald

        You are never “too old” to be even “computer savvy” on a basic level. I do not nor will ever use Facebook or Twitter, but just left click on a link to highlight it then in small drop down screen on a PC click ‘Copy’ then you can place that in the email body you wish to send it to by right clicking in space you wish to place the link then left hold the Ctrl (Control) Key while you type the ‘V’ Key…that ‘pastes’ anything copied to that location.

        If you want to know anything please ask and we certainly will try to help. I am in my early 50’s but I help my mother in another State over the phone all the time with tech stuff and my mother is well into her 70’s. My Dad however, will have nothing to do with technology unless it involves a remote control for a satellite cable box and the large flat screen tv….LOL!

        I never ever claim to have all the answers as I too consider myself constantly on path of learning, but certainly do not be afraid to ask.

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