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Kach wants no videotaped deposition

Jason Cato
| Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2007

Tanya Kach, who was held in captivity for a decade in the home of a school security guard, wants a federal judge to keep the McKeesport School District's lawyer from videotaping her deposition in a civil lawsuit.

Her lawyer and therapist argue the camera would trigger psychological trauma for Kach, 25.

"(Her) emotional distress is well established," attorney Lawrence Fisher wrote in protective order motion filed Monday night in U.S. District Court, Downtown.

Kach disappeared in 1996 at age 14 and emerged in 2006 saying she'd been held captive the entire time in the McKeesport home of Thomas Hose, 49, a former security guard at her middle school.

Fisher said Kach's difficulty with cameras began days after she resurfaced in March 2006, when television crews conducted interview after interview "that became intolerable" to his client.

Kach has not granted a television interview since, Fisher said, adding she is receiving therapy "for post-traumatic stress disorder exacerbated by video cameras."

During state criminal proceedings against Hose and Judith Sokol, a hairdresser who helped alter Kach's appearance, all video camera operators were ordered to stay at least 20 feet from Kach while at the Allegheny County Courthouse. Court officials also provided Kach with a secure entrance and safe room.

"Even this protection from video cameras was insufficient to save (Kach) from the trauma she suffered and continues to suffer as a result of relentless media attempts to 'capture' her on videotape," Fisher wrote.

Fisher said he has tried to reconcile this matter with the school district's lawyer, David Bloom, even having Kach's therapist explain why the videotaped deposition would be harmful. So far, Fisher said his efforts have been fruitless.

He asked U.S. District Judge Gary L. Lancaster for a hearing to address this issue.

Kach is suing Hose, the school district and others.

Kach has testified that Hose kept her in an upstairs bedroom for four years before allowing her to start coming out when his elderly parents weren't home. In 2005, he changed Kach's name to Nikki Allen and began introducing her to people as his girlfriend. She also said they regularly had sex.

Hose is serving five to 15 years in prison. Sokol was sentenced last month to six to 23 months in jail.

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