I was disappointed today when I heard news of a hearing in the Texas-FLDS fiasco where a mother was trying to get custody of her nine month old baby. What surprised me was the age of the child since my understanding was that mothers of children under 1 year had been allowed to stay with their children. Thankfully it was only a short time later that I stumbled upon the best news I have yet heard in this case – an appeals court overturned the ruling that put all those children in state custody. The news was:
The Third Court of Appeals in Austin ruled that the grounds for removing the children were ”legally and factually insufficient” under Texas law. . . . The appellate court ruled the chaotic hearing held last month did not demonstrate the children were in any immediate danger, the only measure of taking children from their homes without court proceedings.
This was exciting news for two reasons – first, a bad ruling was overturned; second, this ruling indicates that children are not to be taken from their homes without a court hearing unless they are in immediate danger. That standard of immediate danger is perfectly reasonable and it’s good to see a court recognize that the legal standard was not met in this case of abduction. (Anyone who argues that this was not an abduction had better go look up the word because unlike the CPS argument of immediate danger this case perfectly matches the definition of abduction.)