The outcome in this case was only partially correct.
Custody going to the girl's mother was correct...
However child support should NOT have been awarded to the mother...
Nor should visitation have been awarded to the sperm donor in this case.
First of all, marriage is the framework that all societies have set up to protect the rights of fathers and the rest of the surrounding community vis-a-vis children. Men who chose to procreate outside marriage take the risk that they will have no legal rights to any children created outside of that framework and that's the way it should be, as a two-second sperm donation in the back seat of a car or in a drunken encounter during a one-night stand should NOT entitle you to rights...
I'm sorry but a accidental sperm donor is NOT a father, nor should he be treated as one.
This mother fled nine years ago because our current public policy enables men, who have not followed through on their responsibilities as fathers to still get a chance to be what I call a 'half-a@@ed dad"...He doesn't marry the mother and/or make any real public or financial commitment to the woman taking all the risk of bearing his children, leaving that for the rest of us to pick up the tab for that, but as soon as the child is born he is suddenly allowed to emerge and accept laurel leaves as a 'father'...
This after doing nothing outside of a two-minute sperm donation...
Men who do NOT marry the mothers of children should NOT be allowed any legal rights to these children. Of course, they should not be forced into paying child support either...I suggest that perhaps we should change the rules of engagement by denying any individual person the right to go to court for either visitation or child support UNLESS they are married...ONLY the STATE should be allowed the option of obtaining support from a never-married father.
This way fathers who insist on continuing to procreate with mothers and creating children neither can support can still be held financially responsible for said children as the STATE can go to court to get reimbursement for public benefits given to the child BUT never-married parents cannot do so...so there will be no financial incentive for the self-supporting single parent to have children out of wedlock unless they can support them alone, as they won't be able to sue a never-married parent for custody, child support, or visitation...
NOR will a never-married father be allowed to emotionally abuse the mothers of their children by holding these ongoing custody battles over their heads.
AT the same time, society (all the rest of us) will not have to pay for children of parents who cannot support them as the STATE, representing taxpayers can STILL go after reimbursement for public benefits.
Whatever private arrangements parents make between themselves is fine but neither will be allowed into court unless a marriage license is produced. As let's face it people. what is the incentive for men to get married if they can get the EXACT SAME LEGAL RIGHTS AS A MARRIED MAN TO CHILDREN SIMPLY BY GETTING THEIR NAME ON A PIECE OF PAPER...
This public policy change will cut down on MUCH of this nonsense going on lately, most of which appears to be generated by these never-married couples situations where accidental or recreational sperm donors have been given the same rights as a child's mother.
This woman has stated that she 'abducted' her then 5 year old daughter (not that I recognize the concept even, that a mother could ever abduct her own child) because she was afraid that the she could NOT afford the cost of an expensive legal battle to retain custody of her daughter and this is NOT an idle fear. Most non-custodial mothers come from our most backward regions, the South and West and most of them are very low income women...so clearly her fear was very well justified.
In my opinion, ANY custody fight instigated by a man is a form of extreme emotional abuse...unless the child's mother is abusive or neglectful...
For eons mothers have been considered the obvious, best and most natural guardian for the young of every species, including our own, and I see no reason for a bunch of men trying to avoid paying child support and the social engineers who continue to support them to make any change in that arrangement...
All interested parties should forward a letter to the prosecutor's office that handled this case congratulating them on getting it HALF-RIGHT anyway and stating our opinion on how the rest of the decison should have been handled.
The address is:
Don Hill Administration Building
20 South Street, 4th Floor
Newark, OH 43055
Mom obtains custody, child support
Former missing girl wants to stay with mother
By LACHELLE SEYMOURAdvocate Reporter
NEWARK -- Sheri Lyn Taylor, a Johnstown woman who allegedly disappeared from her California home nine years ago with her daughter, retained residential custody of the girl Monday after six hours of negotiations.
Taylor will also receive child support from the girl's father, David Brancheau, who will have regular visitation rights.
Authorities allege Taylor left California with her daughter Vanesa Brancheau, in 1995, gave her the assumed name of Ariel Rose Taylor, and lived in Kansas City, Mo., Daytona Beach, Fla., and Pataskala before moving to Johnstown.
She claims she left California because she was afraid David could harm them.
The two were found living in Johnstown in July after a woman recognized Vanesa's picture from the Web site of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Taylor received temporary physical custody of her daughter, now 14, in September after a two-day hearing in front of Licking County Juvenile Judge Robert Hoover.
David Brancheau, of Auburn Hills, Mich., will pay $425 per month in child support, plus processing fees. He can visit with his daughter every fifth weekend of the year, and four to six weeks in the summer.
Brancheau says the final agreement rewards Taylor for keeping his child away from him.
"I feel I had 14 years of parental alienation I didn't cause, and I'm left holding the bag," he said.
He went along with the plan because Vanesa wanted to live with her mother, he said.
Vanesa will be covered under her mother's health insurance plans, but David Brancheau will be temporarily responsible for 67 percent of any uncovered extraordinary expenses for the girl.
Both parents will share travel necessary for extended visitations, like those during holidays or spring and summer break, and will pay attorney and court fees.
Taylor and Brancheau must also avoid making "disparaging" remarks about each other.
Although Taylor's custody issue appears to be over, she faces felony charges of forgery and interference with custody for actions allegedly taken during her nine-year run from her daughter's father.
Taylor allegedly used false documents for school enrollment in the Southwest Licking School District, sparking the forgery charge.
Last month, Taylor chose to be charged by a bill of information, which waived her rights to indictment and review by jury.
Taylor's attorney, John OBora, said he is happy with the outcome of the custody hearing, but declined to comment further citing Taylor's upcoming review for the diversion program.
Acceptance into that program would allow her to avoid jail time for the felony charges and would be similar to serving probation.
OBora believes his client would be a good candidate for diversion, but said she will likely enter a plea if she is not accepted.
Reporter Lachelle Seymour can be reached at (740) 328-8546 or firstname.lastname@example.org