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Mother arrested in long-standing child custody dispute

Faced with a custody order that is difficult to accept, some Colorado parents may be tempted to act in opposition to that order. Doing so, however, is almost always a bad idea. An example is found in a case in which a mother was arrested for violating a child custody court order by removing the child from her state of residence and concealing the family's whereabouts from the child's father.

In 2014, a judge ordered that the mother would share joint custody of her son with his father. Instead of adhering to that decision, the woman instead chose to flee the area, taking both of her children with her. She was able to resettle in the Pacific Northwest, and lived there undetected for years.

When her case was featured on a recent episode of "The Hunt with John Walsh," people began providing tips that helped law enforcement agents pinpoint the woman's location. Once they confirmed where she was living and her identity, they arrested her and returned the child to his father's care. She now faces criminal charges, in addition to a severely damaged position in any future child custody matters.

When the woman relocated, she initially sought assistance from an agency dedicated to helping victims of domestic violence. If the woman believed that the child's father posed a risk to the child's safety, that belief may have been part of her decision to flee. However, in deciding to take matters into her own hands, she severely limited her own child custody rights once her location was determined. For Colorado parents who are considering any type of drastic action in opposition to a court order, it is imperative to seek legal counsel before taking any action.

Source:, "Berks man reunited with missing son", Jim Lewis, Sept. 20, 2017

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