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Woman jailed for denying fathers' rights to her husband

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

A volatile marriage may lead to an unpredictable divorce. Those in Texas who face custody disputes know how contentious they can be. When one woman was unhappy with the direction her divorce was taking, she decided to risk her freedom to deny her husband his fathers' rights.

Although the couple lived in another state, their battle gained national attention when the mother ran away with two of their children. She took the girls to a friend's house, and the two women arranged for the girls to stay at a horse ranch. The horse ranch belonged to a man and woman who owned a local auto repair shop.

Over two years later, police searched the friend's house and found the cell phone the girls had used to record voice messages. In addition to messages on the phone, police saw photos of the girls that they were able to trace to the horse ranch. The girls were located and safely returned to their father's custody.

The friend who helped hide the girls was sentenced to 180 days in jail, $10,000 in restitution and almost $2,000 in fines. She was also ordered to serve 12 days in jail for the next eight years. The mother of the girls will be on probation for six years after she completes her 250 days in jail for denying her husband his fathers' rights. While parents in Texas may not go to these lengths during a custody dispute, having an attorney to protect one's parental rights is beneficial for achieving the most positive outcome possible.

Source: sctimes.com, "Woman sentenced for helping hide girls", Nov. 11, 2016

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