CLEVELAND, Ohio - Barbara Knight said she can't get information from police or the hospital on her daughter. She said she is desperate to get in touch with her daughter.
Michelle Knight was released from the hospital Friday and is in good spirits. She released a statement thanking the community for the flowers, gifts, and support. She continues to ask for privacy, and that request has her mother upset.
Barbara Knight lives in Florida and came to Cleveland to see her daughter, tell her she loves her, and get Michelle the help she needs. But Barbara has not been able to do that. Family members said Knight doesn’t want to see her family.
Barbara and her lawyer have been unable to get information from the hospital and police. She said she couldn’t even deliver flowers because Michelle wasn’t taking visitors.
“Barbara Knight is a mother whose daughter has lived through hell. The actual hell. Worse than we can imagine. It was hell for her, too. She came up to be with her daughter, to hug her, to help her heal. She’s been stonewalled down the line. I don’t know why and I know it’s abhorrent,” Barbara’s attorney Jay Milano explained.
The family didn't even know Michelle was released from the hospital.
Metro Health Medical Center said Knight is an adult who is able to make her own decisions. The hospital is there to protect a patient’s rights.
Barbara said she feels she has rights, too, as a mom.
“I’m not saying Michelle is legally incompetent. That’s baloney. But nothing she says is reliable. Anyone that damaged doesn’t have a handle on what they need,” Milano said.
Barbara Knight reported her daughter missing in 2002. The case stayed open until she was found. However, 15 months into the investigation Cleveland police removed Knight’s name from the FBI database of missing people. Police said this is protocol because they could not reach Knight’s mother by phone to confirm she was still unaccounted for.
Milano said that’s not true.
“Barbara says nobody contacted her back then. She lived in the same house for years. When she left, her family still lived there. She would be easy to find. They’re the Cleveland police. They could have found the mother,” Milano explained.
Milano said the mother and daughter got along and did not have a strained relationship.
“Ten years of hell have passed. Family is important to the healing process,” Milano explained.
Barbara said she will stay in Cleveland as long as it takes to get her daughter the help she needs.