Does Baby Veronica belong with her biological father or her adoptive parents?
Not sure if you've been following the custody battle of an almost 4-year-old girl named Veronica Brown, but it's one of the most heart wrenching cases I've ever heard. Her biological father, Dusten Brown, was recently ordered to turn her over to her adoptive parents, but he failed to do so and was arrested Monday for custodial interference.
The little girl has been living with her biological father in Oklahoma for 19 months where Dusten thinks she belongs... and I have to say I agree with him.
The case is complicated not only because there's a lot of he said, she said between both parties fighting for custody of Veronica, but also because Dusten is a Native American and has invoked a law, known as the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) which aims to keep Native American families together and to prevent adoptions outside tribes.
Meanwhile, Matt and Melanie Capobianco, who raised Veronica from the moment she was born until Dusten got custody of her more than two years later, claim he gave up his parental rights and never cared for her financial or emotional well-being. The couple say they just want their daughter back and, after going all the way to the Supreme Court and back, the law is on their side.
A South Carolina family court finalized the Capobianco's adoption of Veronica on July 31 and Dusten was supposed to turn her over August 4, but he didn't show up and was arrested Monday after turning himself in. The Capobiancos have warned they don't want to forcibly take their daughter from her biological father, but won't have a problem doing so if necessary.
Really? And how would this be in the best interest of Veronica, a child they haven't seen in more than 19 months? Call me crazy, but it seems to me like everybody has forgotten that we're talking about a human being here and not an inanimate object that can be moved from one family to another without dire consequences.
My heart breaks every time I think of this little girl who happens to be my own son's age. I can't imagine her having to go through yet another devastating disruption in her very short life. Dusten was definitely a stranger to her when he got custody, but they've surely bonded and learned to love each other dearly in the last 19 months. To rip her apart from him and her life with him would be not only detrimental, but brutally cruel.
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