Aaron Fischer Advocates for Families in Recent California Cases

Aaron Fischer (’06), Law Office of Aaron J. Fischer, was quoted in two media outlets discussing recent client representations, including advocating for Elena Nevel, a woman with autism facing eviction from Sonoma County’s Sweetwater Spectrum living facility, and for family members of Antonio “Neno” Billante who died while under custody of the Monterey County Jail.

In the first case, Aaron addressed Sweetwater administrators’ claim that certain of Elena’s behaviors violate her lease and pointed to Elena’s nearly eight-month wait in securing behavioral services. “What’s remarkable is that during this time Elena is doing so well, it’s not like we still have these problems. Even the things that they’re saying they were concerned about, they’ve dissipated significantly … It’s not like there’s more to report on. They’re still relying on things that happened months ago.” Concerning Sweetwater’s denial of multiple requests to discuss the attempted eviction, Aaron stated: “It’s in their requirements to engage in a meaningful interactive process, and not just send letters threatening them and then, regardless of what happens, saying: ‘Not good enough, we’re still pointing back to what happened months ago, and we’re still kicking you out.’ That’s not what disability accommodations law requires. It just kind of didn’t make sense to me.” Aaron also discussed retaliation over abuse that resulted in a corrective action plan for Lifehouse caregiving agency, which provides services to Sweetwater. “The timeline strongly suggests that these are retaliatory actions for the family that was rightfully reporting problematic situations of abuse and trying to go through the appropriate channels to have it addressed for their daughter,” he said. (“Sonoma Autism Facility Resident Faces Wrongful Eviction Threat after Abuse, Parents Say,” The Press Democrat, Mar. 19).

In another case, Aaron was quoted in a KSBW 8 News investigation of 28 in-custody deaths involving Monterey County Jail since the 2015 Herandez class action settlement requiring access by third-party medical professionals. Neutral monitors point to at least five problems related to the death of Neno Billante, whose family members Aaron represents. “He (Neno) was not getting daily wound care. He was not getting medications that he needed, and he wasn’t getting the evaluations necessary to identify if sepsis was developing,” Aaron said. “His legs were black and peeling and he was in such a deteriorating state that doctors weren’t able to do anything at the hospital.” (“KSBW 8 Investigates: Deaths at the Monterey County Jail,” Mar. 21).