A 21-year-old Fenton, Michigan, man and his stepfather are facing five years probation for interference with child custody. The pair were initially charged with kidnapping after they went to Georgia to retrieve the younger man’s 18-month-old son.
The charges against the two men stem from an incident that occurred after the mother of the boy moved to Georgia to be with her new boyfriend and took her son with her. The man and his stepfather then decided to visit the boy on Christmas, so they drove down to Georgia to see him.
On the day after Christmas, the two men were left alone with the boy, so the two took off with the man’s son and went back to Michigan. The mother of the boy then called and reported to the sheriff’s department that her son had been taken.
According to the man’s attorney, under Michigan law, he is considered the boy’s father. He is named as the boy’s father on his son’s birth certificate and he had lived together with the mother for a year. The two had even maintained a verbal agreement to share custody on a weekly basis after they ended their relationship. The attorney states that the two men subsequently took the boy during the man’s normal week for custody after they were told that it would be alright.
Unfortunately for the two, while the law is on the father’s side in Michigan, his actions weren’t legal in the state of Georgia.
Individuals who are involved in Michigan child custody cases may find it beneficial to speak with an experienced family law attorney to learn about their legal rights.
Source: The Augusta Chronicle, “Guilty pleas entered in child custody dispute,” Sandy Hodson, April. 13, 2015