Baby Veronica case

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Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Sun Aug 25, 2013 8:29 pm

I do not know how many of you are aware of this case, but I put it here in the political thread because it has gone to the SCOTUS and it does affect the laws regarding the adoption of Indian babies by Non-Native families. The law I refer to is the Indian Child Welfare Act that was adopted in 1978. This law regulates the adoptions of children born to registered Native American tribal members by making the tribes approve any adoption that is outside of the child's tribe. This case has been going on for 4 years now, and it has heated up during the last two weeks with protests being held in both the child's birthplace of Oklahoma and in South Carolina which is the state in which she resided for the first 27 months of her life. She has been living with her father Dusten Brown in Oklahoma since December 31, 2011 after the courts ruled that her father be given full custody because the adoption was not finalized. That decision has now been overturned and the SCOTUS ruled that the ICWA does not apply in this case. After that ruling, the courts in SC ordered that the child be returned and they terminated Dusten's parental rights and finalized Veronica's adoption. They also charged Dusten with interference with parental custody and he was arrested last week. Now the state courts as well as the Cherokee tribal court are trying to sort this out. Now to his credit, Dusten has tried since 2012 to work out some sort of joint custody arrangement with the adoptive parents-Matt and Melony Capobianco but they have flatly refused. They have instead chosen to take their case to the court of public opinion, speaking on the Dr. Phil show and bringing Troy "The Locator" Dunn to Oklahoma to "hunt for Veronica" (Matt Capobianco's words). Just this week, this reality show host and the C's went to the tribal school that Veronica attends in an attempt to get her but were unsuccessful since she was not there. The truth is that both sides have made mistakes with this case. But as time goes on and more truths are being revealed, the adoptive parents actions have proven to be more damaging IMO. They have repeatedly ignored court gag orders, and when given the opportunity to visit with the child this week they refused because they wanted to be alone with her instead of having her court appointed Guardian Ad Litem in the room during the visitation. Now they finally did visit with the child on Friday, but any further visits have been suspended on the recommendation of Veronica's G.A.L. for some reason. Yes this child may have some memories of the adoptive parents, but having lived with her father, stepmother, stepsister and half sister she is no doubt bonded with them and at this point it would be damaging to remove her from her current home IMO. Here are some facts on the case, and there are more out there if anyone is interested. [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by Naddy on Sun Aug 25, 2013 10:39 pm

MW, where is the birth mother? Is she still alive and gave up her parental rights?

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Baby Veronica

Post by Northernstar on Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:13 pm

Ya, a sad story all around. I've been keeping track of it a bit but don't know much about the details. Last I heard was that the adoptive parents weren't able to see her and that the lawyers were trying to block them somehow from doing this. Is that right? Did they get to see her on Friday? If you could link any info/sources, I find this case really interesting and would like to read more. New to this forum so trying to catch up!




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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by jennymormul on Tue Aug 27, 2013 6:47 pm

The father didn't want his daughter to be put up for adoption - that should be the end of it, he wants to raise his daughter, sad for the adoptive family, but she is his daughter


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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:09 pm

Naddy wrote:MW, where is the birth mother?  Is she still alive and gave up her parental rights?
Naddy, the birth mother is the one who facilitated the adoption. The father went to military training in another state and she waited until then to start the proceedings. He actually had to locate her at one point because her whereabouts were unknown. The birth father signed a paper that many service members sign before deployment if they are single parents. He did not realize at the time that the paper he was signing terminated his rights and gave permission for adoption to the adoptive parents. When he realized it, he immediately asked for the papers back from the process server and was refused. He then went to the JAG (Judge Advocate General aka military lawyers) for advice and they filed the stay of adoption proceedings until he could finish his overseas deployment duty.

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by Naddy on Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:11 pm

marinewifehatessam wrote:
Naddy wrote:MW, where is the birth mother?  Is she still alive and gave up her parental rights?
Naddy, the birth mother is the one who facilitated the adoption. The father went to military training in another state and she waited until then to start the proceedings. He actually had to locate her at one point because her whereabouts were unknown. The birth father signed a paper that many service members sign before deployment if they are single parents. He did not realize at the time that the paper he was signing terminated his rights and gave permission for adoption to the adoptive parents. When he realized it, he immediately asked for the papers back from the process server and was refused. He then went to the JAG (Judge Advocate General aka military lawyers) for advice and they filed the stay of adoption proceedings until he could finish his overseas deployment duty.
Thank you MW. This is definitely an interesting case. Hopefully they will do what is best for the child and make the right choice.

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:41 pm

Here is more info on the case from an expert asked to help out the adoptive family. That expert now believes that the adoptive family was not truthful. [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:58 am

Update on this case-this evening Veronica was peacefully transferred from her biological father's custody to that of her adoptive parents. I say peacefully only because there was no fighting amongst the adults. Dusten Brown could be heard telling Veronica that she is loved and that he would see her again. Unfortunately little Miss Veronica (as we supporters have been calling her) was not so peaceful. She was scared to death and she was screaming "I do not want to go" at the top of her lungs the entire time. Also her biological grandfather suffered a heart attack during the transfer and is currently hospitalized. Please keep the Browns and little Miss Veronica in your prayers. The adoptive family has promised Dusten that he would be a part of this child's life, but so far all of the promises they have made in the past were not kept.

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Tue Sep 24, 2013 1:22 am

Wanted to add that the appeals process in this case is not over. This is simply a lifting of a previous order which allowed Dusten Brown to retain custody of his child while they went thru all of the appeals. Reports tonight say that federal marshals showed up along with local law enforcement in both marked and unmarked cars and two suv's. Veronica was being carried away crying and screaming by one of the attorney's while her grandfather was being loaded into an ambulance. Her 10 year old half sister did not even get the chance to say goodbye since she lives with her mother during the week in another nearby town.

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by esm on Tue Sep 24, 2013 6:43 am

I want to look into this case, Ive had an ICWA case or two, the federal statute is very interesting, and is favored toward the tribe's rights. It sounds as if he, Dad, signed away his rights when he went in to the military, but in all the terminations/releases Ive done a judge must be present to explain his rights. Something seems very odd. Thanks for bringing this case to the board!

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Re: Baby Veronica case

Post by marinewifehatessam on Wed Sep 25, 2013 10:07 pm

esm wrote:I want to look into this case, Ive had an ICWA case or two, the federal statute is very interesting, and is favored toward the tribe's rights. It sounds as if he, Dad, signed away his rights when he went in to the military, but  in all the terminations/releases Ive done a judge must be present to explain his rights. Something seems very odd. Thanks for bringing this case to the board!
You are welcome. News today says that the adoptive couple is now suing Dusten for half a million dollars in legal fees. They take his daughter and now they want him to pay for it?

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