In June of this year Supreme Court Judge Ross, the supervising judge of the matrimonial courts in Nassau County, held that a mother, Lauren R., willfully violated his court order by intentionally and deliberately alienating her young children from her ex-husband Ted R.
Judge Ross held her in civil contempt and ordered that she be incarcerated every other weekend during the course of the summer. Judge Ross held that “the evidence before me demonstrates a pattern of willful and calculated violations of the clear and express dictates of the parties’ stipulation of settlement.”
The judge’s decision also stated “the extensive record is replete with instances of attempts to undermine the relationships with the children and their father and replace him with her new husband, manipulation of defendant’s parenting access, utter and unsatiated vilification of the defendant to the children, false reporting of sexual misconduct without any semblance of good faith, and her imposition upon the children to fear her tirades and punishments if they embrace the relationship they want to have with their father.”
During the course of the hearing regarding this matter Mr. R testified to numerous occasions in which his ex-wife interfered with his visitation or took action to alienate the children from him.
During Mr. R’s testimony he told the court of events in the winter of 2007 when he was prevented from seeing his children for a period of 6 weeks. He was relegated to lighting a menorah for Hanukkah and watching his daughters open their grandparents’ presents in the back of his truck as the base of his ex-wife’s driveway.
Change In Custody
Judge Ross was so shocked by Mrs. R’s behavior that, in addition to holding her in contempt, he ordered a hearing to consider a change in custody and to consider Mr. R’s request for more than $134,000 in attorney fee’s to be paid by Mrs.R. The hearings on this matter were postponed due to an appeal brought by Mrs. R. Hooray for Judge Ross!!
This case should serve as a warning that both parents are responsible for putting their children’s best interests before their own anger at their spouses or ex spouses.