The medical license of Milton pediatrician Melvin L. Morse was suspended, according to a state regulatory website as the story of alleged “waterboarding” became national news and a well-known Delaware defense attorney took on the case.
This came after two children from Georgetown were placed into custody of Family Services, after a daughter reported she was “waterboarded” by Morse, 58.
In an interview with WDEL, attorney Joseph Hurley claimed the waterboarding claim is exaggeration, pointing to what he said was a previous case of the daughter claiming abuse against a family member (not Melvin Morse) and later taking back her claim. He went on to note that the case has attracted widespread interest, noting that he received a call from a British newspaper.
Hurley is comfortable with high-profile cases, perhaps the best known being his representation of Thomas Capano, who was convicted of murdering Ann Marie Fahey, the secretary of then Gov. Tom Carper. Hurley quit the case over differences with long-time friend. Capano, a former state prosecutor.
Morse reportedly spanked the girl inside the home and was arrested on July 16th. He was later released after posting $750 secured bail.
On Aug. 6th, the girl was brought to the Child Advocacy Center where she was told detectives that over a two-year period, beginning in May 2009, she was disciplined by her father at least four times, by what he called “waterboarding.”
The practice involved the father holding her face under a running facet causing the water to enter her nose and hit her face. The punishment was used on her no less than four different occasions. The victim’s mother, Pauline Morse, 40, allegedly saw a few of the incidents and failed to stop Melvin.
The Morses were arrested at their residence on August 7th and arraigned Melvin is in Sussex Correctional on $14,500 bond. Pauline Melvin was released $14,500 unsecured bail. Both face endangerment and conspiracy charges.