Father may have destroyed his child custody opportunity

Colorado parents may have read about an unusual custody case that led to a father’s arrest on felony charges. The case serves as a reminder of the importance of taking the proper course of action when trying to secure child custody rights. Had this father chosen a different path, he may have been able to secure shared custody of his daughter. Instead, he now faces felony charges for child abduction.

The case began when a father took his seven-year-old daughter on an out-of-state trip, with the consent of her mother. At the time of the trip, the parents had no child custody agreement in place, so when the time came to bring the child home, the father decided that he would keep her in his care. When he contacted her mother and stated his intent, the mother immediately filed paperwork seeking child custody rights. The father was notified, but he did not appear in court to contest that action. As a result, the mother was granted full custody.

Once that step was complete, the mother was able to approach law enforcement and ask for the forced return of her child. A felony warrant for child abduction was issued, and officers were able to locate the man and his daughter. Officers noted that while interacting with the family, the daughter appeared to be in good health and was thriving in her father’s care.

Because this father decided to take matters into his own hands rather than seek child custody rights through the established legal procedure, he is now in an incredibly difficult situation. He faces felony charges for child abduction and depriving rights of custody. Even worse, his ability to secure child custody rights in any future legal action may have been seriously compromised. Parents in Colorado and across the nation should view this case as a cautionary tale of allowing one’s emotion to overrule their ability to make rational decisions.

Source: newswest9.com, “West coast search ends in Texoma”, Samantha Forester, July 22, 2016

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