Wife files a petition for injunction for protection against domestic violence for a restraining order against Husband.
Husband is not yet served with order of protection against him.
Husband had moved out of marital home.
But was there one Saturday evening, trying to break in.
Wife calls police. They arrive.
Husband locks himself in the house.
Husband shoots Wife.
Wife is taken to hospital, where she is expected to recover.
Husband is later found in the house, dead.
Although a police officer had shot at Husband, it is not believed that the bullets hit him.
Read more in this Orlando [FL] Sentinel article: Man found dead after shooting wife and barricading himself in house.
Adoption can be a complex legal process and a costly social process.
It can also be the answer to a couple’s prayers.
There are several types of adoptions:
- domestic private, through an agency or direct
- domestic foster care
- international private
- foreign or domestic special needs
Eachy type of adoption typically imposes different costs and expense, offers different potential tax benefits and other government support and follows a somewhat different process.
Read more in this Southgate [MI] News Herald article: Adopting a child can be a long, costly journey.
No matter what we as a society throw at it, domestic violence remains an intractable problem.
Impacting perhaps twenty-five percent of women in the US.
So the President is appointing a White House advisor on domestic violence.
The appointee is tasked with reaching across agencies to better coordinate governmental action.
The appointment comes as domestic violence is, despite our efforts to date, on the rise rather than a decline, presumably as a result of the stresses of the weak economy and high unemployment.
Read more in this New York Times editorial: An Advocate for Women.
Of course, not all victims of domestic violence are women…
As part of a series of articles about divorce, the Tampa Bay Examiner takes the opportunity to reprint one version of the Children’s Bill of Rights. There are many versions, that express similar sentiments in somewhat different ways.
Any version is worth every separating parent’s review:
- The right to be treated as important human beings, with unique feelings, ideas and desires, and not as a source of argument between parents.
- The right to a continuing relationship with both parents and the freedom to receive love from and express love for both.
- The right to express love and affection for each parent without having to stifle that love because of fear of disapproval by the other parent.
- The right to know that their parents’ decision to divorce is not their responsibility and that they will live with one parent and visit the other.
- The right to continuing care and guidance from both parents.
- The right to honest answers to questions about the changing family relationships.
- The right to know and appreciate what is good in each parent without one parent degrading the other.
- The right to have a relaxed, secure relationshp with both parents without being placed in a position to manipulate one parent against the other.
- The right to have the custodial parent not undermine visitation by suggesting tempting alternatives or by threatening to withhold visitation as a punishment for the children’s wrongdoing.
- The right to be able to experience regular and consistent visitation and the right to know the reason for cancelled visits.
Read more in this Tampa Bay [FL] Examiner article: Divorce and the children’s bill of rights.
Although not unique in this respect, Los Angelenos recognize that too many deaths of children from abandonment, abuse or neglect could have been – but weren’t – avoided, as a result of lack of communication between agencies.
Now, county officials are finally calling for sharing of information between county agencies, including potential red flags in criminal, domestic violence, educational, medical and psychological histories of family members.
Free availability of information is tempered by privacy concerns though.
While flags will be visible via computer, full data will not.
Social workers will have to request more detailed information directly from the agency in possession of the information sought. But they will at least know that there is something worth requesting and who has it.
The system is expected to take eighteen months to implement.
Read more in this Los Angeles Times article: Data-sharing system to curb child abuse is proposed by L.A. County supervisors.
Maryland recently added a second facility for children in foster care to have visitation with their biological parents and siblings – under supervision of social workers.
The facility is actually a house, minus televisions, computers and similar modern distractions found in most homes.
Visitation in this home-like setting aids in the assessment and facilitation of interactions to support eventual reunification of foster children with their biological families. That typically takes about eighteen months.
This facility is different from most supervised visitation centers, which simply try to keep the peace and maintain safety.
Much of the work to renovate and adapt the house to its new purpose was done with donated labor and funds.
Read more in this Maryland Gazette article: Home opens for foster children, biological parents.
Seven year old boy (Son) lives with his Grandmother in Alabama.
Massachusetts biological Father wants visitation with Son.
Father goes to court seeking visitation.
Father reportedly wants to build a relationship with Son.
It is unclear whether a court ever grants visitation or any custodial rights to Father.
But Father apparently convinces Grandmother that it has.
Father has Son with him on Father’s Day.
And Father allegedly beats Son on Father’s Day.
Into a coma.
There is no indication that Father has ever previously been convicted of domestic violence or child abuse, or even whether Father has ever been subject to an injunction for protection against domestic violence or order of protection.
Father is now charged with homicide in Son’s death.
Read more in this [Chattanooga, TN] WRCB TV 3 Eyewitness news article: Father accused in boy’s beating pleaded for visits and this [Montgomery, AL] WSFA 12 News article: Shocking revelation in boy’s beating death.
Tennessee has gone one better on a trend toward protecting custodial and visitation rights of parents deployed in the military.
Under a brand new law, a parent deployed for at least ninety days can assign his or her visitation rights to a relative, subject to the court’s authority to veto the surrogate’s visitation if it is not in the child’s best interests.
This is an interesting expansion of the widespread view that visitation is a fundamental personal privilege of a parent.
But for now, deployed parents can presumably transfer their visitation rights to, say, stepparents who are their new spouses.
Legal challenges will likely follow in short order.
Read more in this [Chattanooga, TN] WRCB 3 Eyewitness News TV article: Military visitation rights bill signed by governor.
Mentally disabled young Woman lives with her Mother.
Twenty year old Man pursues “relationship” with Woman.
Mother seeks and obtains an order of protection against Man for benefit of Woman.
That reportedly does not stop Man.
After being served with the domestic violence restraining order, Man allegedly lures Woman to his parents’ home and sexually assaults her.
He also reportedly takes her cell phone and threatens to hurt her if she notifies authorities of the assault.
Woman’s injuries from assault require medical treatment at hospital.
Man is charged with aggravated criminal sexual assaut, criminal sexual assault, intimidation, unlawful interference with the reporting of domestic violence and unlawful violation of an order of protection.
Man reportedly has a history of exposing himself in public and inappropriate conduct toward another mentally challenged young woman.
Man is confined pending posting of a $2 million bond. Should he be released, he will be required to wear an ankle bracelet to enforce restriction to his residence.
Read more in this [Suburban Chicago] Daily Herald article: $2 million bond for man accused of assaulting disabled woman.
Arizona Mother has sole custody of nine year old Son.
Father takes Son for a week of visitation as per court order.
In the past, Father has taken Son to Hawaii, a place that Father has said he would like to live.
At the end of the permitted weeklong visitation, Father and Son fail to return … even after a month.
Father’s home appears to be abandoned.
For now, both Father and Son are listed as missing
Authorities are seeking information as to their whereabouts.
Son is on daily prescription medication which Father has not always administered.
Read more in this [Chandler, AZ] ABC TV 15 article: Valley boy and dad remain missing after weeklong trip and this Chandler Police Department press release: Father and Child Missing For Over A Month.