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August 12th, 2013
10:08 PM ET

Arrest in Baby Veronica custody battle

Another painful chapter in the bitter custody battle over "Baby Veronica."  Her biological father Dusten Brown was arrested today for failing to show up to a court appointed hearing, which was meant to be the first step in handing over the now four-year-old girl backto her adoptive parents.  360's Randi Kaye has the latest.

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soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. Sarro

    This is what happens when people buy babies. The adoption was not on the level, The lawyer representing the adoptive parents has a massive conflict of interest and should be disbarred. The whole thing was mishandled from the start,

    August 15, 2013 at 6:27 am |
  2. dale cranfield

    Understand that I am also Indian and live about 70 miles from the father but when he made the choice to have nothing to do with the mother of his child until her death he lost his rights as a dad. He only wants custody now because he will get more money from the Indian nation and the national guard for having more children.

    August 14, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Diana

      If that were the case, he could have been dropping babies for a while now. But I believe that he only has two, and the eldest daughter resides with her mother.

      September 14, 2013 at 4:56 am |
  3. jina Ray

    it was wrong when they took the baby from adapted parents in a first place ,but it is horrible now if they take her from biological father. Please don't play with the little girl and do what is the best for her. Staying with his real father and her people is what is right at this time and moment. If you love this girl set her free and don't disturb her life at this age. I think this adapted people just love the attention at this time , if you love her keep your relationship with her and Im sure she will come to you if she needs you when she grew up. That is not fair to a 4years old child.

    August 14, 2013 at 12:13 am |
  4. Cynthia

    Points of law: did the natural father sign the adoption papers? Was the child adopted without his permission? If he wants to raise his own child, why would the adoptive parents refuse him that right? If they received the child without his consent, why do they not understand the consequences? I'm a little confused by all this emotion fogging out the law? what is the law in question here?

    August 13, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
  5. Stephen D

    Why isn't the military assisting in returning Veronica to the adoptive parents? Army regulations REQUIRE commanders to ensure court orders are followed (See AR-608-99) "1-5b. Soldiers are required to manage their personal affairs in a manner that does not bring discredit upon themselves or the U. S. Army. This responsibility includes— ... (4) Complying with all court orders." "1-5c. Commanders and their staffs have a responsibility, when consistent with other military requirements, to ensure that any action or nonaction on their part does not encourage or facilitate violations of court orders or this regulation or avoidance of a judicial resolution of issues relating to paternity, child custody, or support by soldiers and family "members." Since the highest court in the land has spoken, shouldn't the military take action?

    August 13, 2013 at 6:22 pm |
    • Diana

      Maybe his commanding officers believe in the right of a father to raise his own flesh and blood. Maybe they believe that a man fighting for families in another country under the flag of his own country should be applauded, not criminalized, for seeking to raise his own child when the mother clearly does not want to do so. Maybe they know him better than you do, and their decision rests on his proven character to them as a soldier, and a gentleman. He offered to help the mother, she refused.

      September 14, 2013 at 5:09 am |
  6. Donna

    I truly believe Veronica should be with Dusten. The adoption was illegal anyways.

    August 13, 2013 at 4:49 pm |
    • Lynda

      No it wasn't illegal. Get your facts straight. Brown gave up all rights to the child when she was born. The mother put her up for adoption. The other died...Brown changed his mind and decided he wanted the daughter. There is speculation that he decided he wanted her because now he gets money to have her because she is another link with the Cherokee Nation and every member of the Nation gets money from the Casino. I don't know that is true.

      What we do know is he gave up rights. She was adopted and raised for two years by another family. When the mother died he went to check on the child for the first time ever and found out she had been adopted at birth...before that he never cared. At this point he used a little known law about Native American children to try to get her back. He won that case but the Supreme Court ruled that the adoption was completely legal and the Foster Care rules that he used to get her back do not apply.

      August 15, 2013 at 10:28 am |
  7. ramona hundley

    This is such a heart breaking story Anderson. I think you should do a segment on paternal rights.

    August 13, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • lynn chalepah

      just dont get it. its not a biological vs adoptive rights. its a ICWA implementation. native rights out trump both.

      August 15, 2013 at 9:49 pm |
  8. Katherine

    The adoptive parents have the rights right now, but how is this little girl going to view them when she's old enough to start asking questions about her biological parents? She's going to be able to find all of this information about how much her father fought to keep her and how hard they fought to take her from them. I'm guessing that he gave up his parental rights because he had no way to care for her, but looking at the rank on his uniform, he hasn't been in the military very long. Judging by the girl's age, he probably sought financial stability from the military. I know it would be terribly hard on the adoptive parents to give her up, but I honestly think it would be best.

    August 13, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
  9. Colleen Murray

    Brown IS Cherokee – he is an enrolled citizen!

    August 13, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
  10. Mary S. Willis, Ph.D.

    Will you please invite an expert such as Indian Psychologist Joseph Gone from the University of Michigan to discuss the mental health impact of adoption by a non-Indian family and removal from one's culture only for the selfish desire of a white family. The Supreme Court asked the State of South Carolina to reconsider the best interest of the child? The best interest for any child has to include the right to live within one's culture and to be raised by a parent with love. The moment Veronica Brown is removed from her Indian family and culture to be raised in a white home she will lose her culture and knowledge of who she is forever. This was the whole point of the Indian Child Welfare Act. If the Capobiancos truly love Veronica, they would want her to live among her people and with a family who loves her and wants her. I can't imagine tearing a child away from a parent – it's truly cruel and unusual treatment. Please share this perspective in your reporting. The U.S. needs to be educated about Indian people and the right to maintain one's culture.

    August 13, 2013 at 11:37 am |
    • Patrick Moore

      Please try to learn something about the case before commenting. She was not being raised in "Indian Culture." She was not stolen by an evil white family. This case does not resemble in any way the situation that led, appropriately, to passage of ICWA. Brown essentially kidnapping her, if that's what's happening here, is only traumatizing Veronica.

      August 13, 2013 at 11:10 pm |
  11. Mary

    The courts should get these things right. She should be given to her adoptive parents since they raised her from when she was a baby.

    August 12, 2013 at 10:57 pm |

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