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  • please help

    my husband had joint custody of his dau. His ex moved out of state during the divorce and received primary custody. Earlier this year we found out that the ex moved in with her boyfriend who has a criminal hx of child molestation, yet it was before the offender registry came about. We found out that the boyfriend had molested my husbands daughter and there is now a criminal trial in process with protective services involved. Anyway when we found out, the daughter was here for summer visitation and we received an exparte order giving my husband full custody. The hearing was scheduled for a few weeks ago at which point the ex wife filed an answer and the court filed a continuance until further notice. Anyway the ex wife calls tonight and left a message for daughter stating she hopes to see her in a couple days. My husband called the ex, and she states that there is court on Tuesday and that we need to contact our lawyer. However, we have been in contact with our attorney and he did not have any further information at that time. We had been waiting for a "settlement" of sorts, our attorney stated that after the continuance had been filed, ex's attorney talked to our attorney stating that he would be sending a visitation plan that would involve ex coming down here for visitations (it was halfway). Anyway, now my husbands plan is to show up at the courthouse at 8am Tuesday to find out if he is on the schedule and then go down to the atty's office after that (since the office doesn't open until 9). My question is, shouldn't we have been notified somehow? We were out of town last week to the ex's state as witnesses in the criminal trial, and although we did not notify her we would be there, she somehow managed to send someone (which means she's still in contact with the molester). I don't know if we would have been served as such when the new date for court was set, but I would have thought the court would have notified our attorney. With us not being notified, what are our options (in addition to my husband showing up tuesday to verify). Even if there is court, we have had no time to reissue subpoenas since we were not aware of a court date being re-set. Any advice would be appreciated since we can't get a hold of our attorney until Tuesday am.

  • #2
    please help cont.

    I forgot to mention that the hearing that was "continued" was for the temp modification of custody giving my husband full custody. We have been told that if the case falls through and the child goes back to the other state, protective services will step in and take her and we will have to pick her up due to the other states protective services believing that ex knew about the molestation and that the daughter states she told her mom and she didn't do anything.


    • #3
      Perhaps the ex is blowing smoke....But if not, if you were not served, I do not see how any court could go ahead with a hearing. But just in case, your husband is doing the right thing by checking the schedule on Tuesday. I hope that you & your husband get custody because if the mom knew and did nothing she should go to jail!!!!!!!!!!! Why is the other state not pressing charges against the MOM if she KNEW????
      Any mother that lets a sex offender (that she knows is a sex offender) move in her house deserves to have her child taken away!


      • #4
        Thats what we think as well but just in case my husband will be at the courthouse on Tuesday. I would have thought that if the continuance had been rescheduled we would have been served. My husband spoke to the sherrifs dept and they didn't have any knowledge of any papers for my husband. We are in close contact with the other state due to the criminal case, they say they won't press any charges due to not having enough evidence that she willfully let it happen. When they interviewed her she lied and tried to put the blame on my husband and accused him of not paying child support as the reason she was evicted and moved into the man's house. My husband has never been behind. She tried to tell them she looked up his history, and even though he is not on the offender registry (it happened before the registry was in existence) he is easily located on the corrections page. She admitted to them that she went online to check him out but did not see anything on him anywhere in the corrections site. It is very frustrating. We are trying to give our step dau as normal a life as possible as we can right now. Her mother calls everynight leaving messages for her and leaving degrading comments about my husband. She has not spoken to her daughter in 3 weeks now because the last time my husband had his daughter call her back she cried and threw a fit because she didn't want to talk to her. Since then my husband asks her every night if she wants to call her mom and my step daughter has said no everytime. Ex states we are denying her her daughter, even though my husband explained to her why we are not making her daughter call and that it is her daughters decision. Ex claims shes going to bring that up in court but all we are concerned about is the child's safety and what the child wants. The child stated she told her mom and her mom didn't do anything. Anyhow I hope it goes well because if my step daughter goes back it means we will have to go back up there and pick her up as protective services had already told us thats what they will do. Frustrating since we were there all last week. Thanks again for your reply though, sometimes it helps just to be able to vent about the situation.


        • #5
          How is it that not one family member of his or friend of his is stepping forward to say - Hey I told her that he was a child molester? It does not make sense that all of his family/ friends could keep that a secret when they see that he has a young girl moving in. She may not have "willingly let it happen" but she was negligent in protecting the child. She also didn't report the abuse and continued to live with the monster! IS the mom on drugs??
          Anyway, the child should be in counseling.(if she is not already) This must be horrible and confusing for her. You should talk to the counselor about the phone calls from mom upsetting the child and follow the counselors recommendations (so that things will be done in the "best interest of the child")
          It is a very touchy issue denying phone privileges. However, phone calls should be limited to a reasonable amount (like one or two a week). I hope you saved the "messages" she left. You should have your lawyer write up a letter stating that neither party will make negative comments about the other in front of the child. You should also set up a phone schedule - once a week the child will have to (I know you don't want to force her but unless a therapist says it's detramental you might have to force the child) call her mom. At least untill the custody hearing. Tell the child she can tell her mom whatever she wants and Child won't get in trouble. Tell her she can say good bye and hang up at anytime. Even if the child where to say "Mom, I don't want to talk to you good bye" That would be better than no contact. Pehaps if she felt she had some control back it would be less scary. I hope your atty has been informed about the telephone situation.
          Good Luck!!!! I'm sure the prayers of many people are with you.


          • #6
            update on please help


            I went to the courthouse this am. My husband wasn't on the docket. He went to the attorney's office when they opened, the secretary said his attorney had 8 cases today and none were his, she said she'd find out what was going on and have attorney call my husband. She gave him the "visitation" proposal that his ex came up with. Basically meet in Ohio at a location that was not half way (we'd have to drive further), she would have unsupervised visitation labor day weekend (letter was typed 8/31) and anytime child was out for a 3 day weekend off school and entitled her to at least 1 phone call per day. My husband was going to collaborate with protective services, his attorney, and other professionals to come up with a suitable parenting plan. His attorney called and said to meet him at the courthouse at 2pm and basically told him the judge had reviewed the ex's "visitation" proposal and was prepared to give it to her and then they had a meeting to smooth out the edges. My husband was not allowed to submit his affidavits (most were from protective services) nor have his witness there. His attorney would not file a continuance, stating that the best thing would be to work with the plan as the judge was going to let her have what she wanted (regardless of the fact that her boyfriend is still having a criminal trial. All she had to say was that she had broken ties with the man (even though the affidavits we have prove she is a liar). Basically my husband was left with having to deliver his daughter to her at 3pm today (she got out of school just after 2) to her mother. Mom gets her until Thursday but has to bring her and pick her up from school. My husband is to pick her up Thursday after school and mom will pick her up Friday afternoon where she will be with her until Sunday. After that, mom gets child anytime she is out of school for a 3 day weekend (for just 3 days per our understanding...which means thanksgiving break she would only get 3 days). Christmas she will get her at 2pm and return her new years day at 2 pm. Of course we will have to meet halfway between ex-wifes moms house and ours since visitations are to be supervised in the other state by ex'wifes parents where she is living at. She is also required to pay child support, which of course she claims she is only making $6.50/hr and working only 33 hours a week, which we are having our attorney verify by check stubs. At any rate our attorney said it was better to do it this way then let the judge rule since he would probably have ruled in her favor. We are just frustrated because it's like she gets off scott free, no counseling or nothing. We are already having issues. My husband called to say good night to his daughter and have her remind mom she had girl scouts this weekend. Mom got on the line and said no they had other plans and of course it was heartbreaking because you could hear step dau in the back ground asking why she couldn't go to girlscouts. On another note, mom cut phone call short, stating the call was costing her .40cents a min (which I told my husband isn't his problem) but he let her go because it was close to her bedtime. Very frustrating but I guess it could have been worse. Either way we will be in with the attorney in the am to hash it all out as this was just for the temporary custody. btw, ex also put a stipulation in that in the agreement she wants it to say that she doesn't have to deal with me, which in my opinion is stupid...i'm not going to not answer my phone in case it might be her or not help my husband travel for pick ups and drop offs and all that. Anyway I just find the court system down here bizarre. We talked to cps in the other state and they were just as mortified as we were that the custody ended up that way.


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