TO TELL THE TRUTH
An infant’s death with evidence as high as the sky should be a slam-dunk. But what happens when the savviest defense attorney in town assists his idealistic public defender daughter? Timely in its examin-ation of how belief in science can be mani-pulated, To Tell the Truth will have you quest-ioning your own deliberations if sitting in the juror’s box. A haunting expose of the clash between law and medicine, as written by a pediatrician with over 40 years’ clinical and trial experience with shaken baby syndrome.
Dr. Robert Reece, interviewed on "Conversations"
“Dr. Robert Reece’s moving novel is fiction based upon non-fiction. We judges grapple daily with the dilemma he depicts, as do jurors. Reece’s book, besides entertaining and enlightening, is a tool for all Americans. It helps all know that the world of science has finally established not only that the world is round but also that abusive head trauma in infants and children is a scientific reality-without plausible denial! Thousands of physicians agree. Perhaps a dozen criminal defense medical witnesses would disagree. The latter testify, earning $12,000 a day in court, that infant head trauma has other causes…and presumably also that the world is flat. Reece’s book supports the reality of abusive head trauma. Let there finally be justice for all, including children!”
– Judge Charles D. Gill,
Connecticut Superior Court
Be sure to read Dr. Reece's second book:, Double Blind, Double Cross
A New Book Based on the Author's Forty Years of Clinical and Trial Experiences
in Abusive Head Trauma -
Shaken Baby Syndrome
Robert M. Reece
Robert M. Reece, MD, was Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at Tufts University School of Medicine (now retired). Additionally, he served as the Director of the Child Protection Team at Tufts Medical Center and as Consultant to Child Protection Teams at the Massachusetts General Children’s Hospital, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, and the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth.
Reece edited nine pediatric textbooks: three editions of Child Abuse: Medical Diagnosis and Management, and two editions of Treatment of Child Abuse: Common Ground for Mental Health, Medical and Legal Practitioners. Reece co-edited Inflicted Childhood Neurotrauma published by the American Academy of Pediatrics. He has published 48 peer-reviewed medical articles and contributed 27 book chapters. Reece edited The Quarterly Update, a review journal, since 1993.
He has been honored by numerous professional organizations for his contributions to the field of child abuse diagnosis and treatment. Frequently called as an expert witness, Reece has consulted and testified in countless cases of abusive head trauma and has lectured extensively nationally and internationally on the subject.
“Bob Reece has written a compelling story, addressing an issue familiar to physicians who care for children, but important to all of us. A baby dies, and the question of a sad, natural death weighed against a homicide and who caused the death becomes a quagmire of truth and lies inherent in the justice system assigned to determine guilt or innocence. Characters reflect personal attitudes and emotions, creating glimpses into their humanity as the baby’s case winds its way through an all-too-real courtroom drama. The narrative of witnesses in the courtroom and tactics of attorneys brings the reader face-to-face with a startling reality: sometimes criminal cases are influenced by more than “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.”
– Robert W. Block, MD, FAAP,
Professor Emeritus, Pediatrics,
University of Oklahoma School of Community Medicine,
Child Abuse Pediatrician and Past President
The American Academy of Pediatrics
– "I finished To Tell The Truth last night. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and read it in two sittings. I recognized a lot of people I have met in the last 55 years, accurately but generously portrayed. Knowing Dr. Reece's professional focus, I was not surprised by the larger point he made about the oddities of the judicial process and the effects of the human failings it brings out. I was surprised, however, that I grew to care about the individual main characters he created, and hoped not only that the case ended with a just result, but that the scars left on the actors were not too deep.
I wish I could say I am confident there is a solution to the larger problem. The adversary system creates adversary motivations, and trial lawyers are ordinarily the kind of people who don't like to lose. Lots of science questions get varying answers from varying experts, and the accepted answers sometimes evolve over the decades. In addition, we now live in a world in which, maybe because of the internet, everyone's opinions get an equal airing no matter how baseless they may be, and "common sense" all too often trumps expertise."
Richard S. Cohen, retired judge of the Appellate Division, New Jersey Superior Court