Feb. 9 was the last date of the custody trial. The visitation supervisor, LaTarra Ballard with Progressive Family Services testified that the visits had gone well, I have good parenting skills, present no threat of harm to my child, and I do not require my contact with my child to be supervised. She also said that she had concerns about my child “playing both sides against the middle” and that she thought we should have someone else involved in our contact, not to protect my child from me, but to protect me from the child! I thought it was ridiculous. So, the judge ordered us to have Youth Villages Intercept program services and told us to come back to court March 13, and she would not issue her order before then.
She also ordered, at the other parent’s request, that someone visit my home to ensure that it was “appropriate” for the child. I very strongly objected to any intrusion into my home when there has never been any harm or threat of harm to my child, nor illegal activity taking place in my home. I consider it to be a violation of my 4th Amendment Protections and I also believe it is rewarding abusive attitudes and behaviors of the other parent. He has made multiple false accusations against me and false reports of abuse to DCS. DCS has not been a petitioner or intervening petitioner in my case.
March 13 the judge was told that Youth Villages Intercept could not provide the services because of insurance reasons. On Feb. 9, the Guardian ad Litem and visitation supervisor, when asking for these interventions, claimed that it would be at no cost to the family. It turns out that they were wrong. If my daughter was on Tenncare, she could get the services, but she is not eligible. She might be if I were primary parent. She was on Tenncare when I was Primary Residential Parent. My daughter hasn’t set foot on my property in over 2 1/2 years. She could also get these services if there was a DCS case.
March 13 the judge said she would order DCS to open a case to force them to pay for Youth Villages Intercept services. This is Judge Sheila Calloway. It should be noted that in 2015, when I was restricted–against statute–to supervised visitation, the GAL, Sharlina Pye-Mack and opposing Counsel Sarah Reist Digby asked the judge to not only unlawfully restrict my visitation, but to also order DCS to pay for the supervised visits, contrary to law, since the law forbids DCS to pay for supervised visits unless they are the petitioner or intervening petitioner. I pointed out that these things were contrary to statute, but nobody seemed to care. I pointed it out to the court and to the lawyers and to the DCS caseworkers and nobody did anything until February of 2017 when DCS filed a motion asking for relief from the order, since what the judge was ordering them to do was against the law. Even after Judge Calloway gave DCS relief, she did not give me and my daughter relief we spent days in court and thousands of dollars asking for last year.
Judge Calloway said March 13 that she was going to issue her order, rather than waiting for DCS and Youth Villages to get set up and she said we should be expecting it by mail around April 1st. My daughter’s spring break from school starts tomorrow and runs through next week and I was so hoping that I could have her during spring break and reunite her with friends and family and pets whom she has been cut off from since June 2015.
It is very important that my story be heard and that as many people as possible join in my complaints against the judges and lawyers who have participated in this court-ordered child abuse.
I am about to send an email to DCS now to see if they are doing anything. According to the Juvenile Court Clerk, a referral was sent out March 15.