May 15th, 2014
11:16 PM ET

Adoption Battle

When Dave and Kim Hodgin adopted their daughter Sonya back in 2008 they were thrilled. Dave said he was “ecstatic.”

They had been caring for her and fostering her since before she was two at their home in Dickson Tennessee. But their joy didn’t last long. Just over a year after Sonya’s adoption was finalized, a juvenile judge in Tennessee reversed it.

Why? Because he ruled that her birth father’s parental rights had been erroneously terminated. You see, the biological dad had been sentenced to 15 years in prison, which in Tennessee is enough to make you lose your parental rights if your child is under the age of 8. But what the court didn’t know was that before the adoption was finalized, Sonya’s biological dad had cut a deal to have his sentence reduced to 7 ½ years. That allowed him to fight for the adoption, which was later finalized, to be reversed.

Randi Kaye has an exclusive interview with Sonya’s adoptive parents, who had her ripped from their arms in January of this year.

Dave Hodgin recalled the emotional day: “…and Sonya's crying her eyes out. Screaming bloody murder, ‘Please don't let them do this, daddy, please mama don't let ‘em take me.’”

Watch Randi Kaye’s report for the full story and a preview of the family’s next steps in court.


Watch Randi's report about the May 16th hearing

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Filed under: Adoption • Randi Kaye • Sonya
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. swb253

    The adoption was ILLEGAL & OVERTURNED!!!!
    I am shocked you, Anderson, post a picture of an innocent child! Your coverage was WRONG & seems biased! I wish you'd report THE TRUTH & the other side of this story, not just the FORMER FOSTER FOLK'S side. These foster folks have done so much wrong & told many lies!!! This innocent child is where she belongs,,,with her biological dad & family in Neb.

    June 3, 2014 at 11:41 pm |
  2. Kay Springsteen

    They did not ADOPT their daughter. The adoption was vacated because it was illegal. They were never her legal adopted parents. But your statement here makes it seem as though they were. Your biased reporting on this story has sparked a witch hunt for this father and endangers his daughter. I will never trust your journalism again.

    May 18, 2014 at 7:37 pm |
    • nonfictionnews

      Ya I think Anderson Cooper and CNN know what they are doing. They did indeed adopt "their daughter" (your words not mine!) and it was reversed. Either way I'm adopted (female- found my birth parents) and ALL about birth father's rights but at this point this young lady is old enough to voice she wants to live with her Mom and Dad. Not some filthy mold infested cigarette filled shack looking house (from the way she describes it and the way it looks) so I think Sonya should get to choose who she lives with and it isn't this stranger who is her felon father but never been a dad.

      May 22, 2014 at 12:50 am |

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