Baby Veronica Update: Stay Dissolved

bvadoptivebvbiofatherBaby Veronica’s adoptive parents, Matt and Melanie Capobianco of Charleston, South Carolina, and her biological father, Dusten Brown of Oklahoma, spent the past week in mediation ordered  by the Oklahoma Supreme Court.  The Tulsa World reports that the settlement judge described the negotiations as unsuccessful, saying “…[a]ll the parties negotiated in good faith in my opinion and have been represented by lawyers of competence, skill and diligence….It is a procedurally and substantively complex case, which we simply were unable to resolve by a settlement agreement. As a consequence, the settlement conference was adjourned this morning, and the parties and their attorneys instructed that all gag orders remain operative and in effect.”

According to both the Tulsa World and the Charleston Post & Courier, the Oklahoma Supreme Court lifted its stay this afternoon which had prohibited the enforcement of the Nowata District Court’s earlier order regarding Veronica’s custody.   According to the docket sheet available on the court’s web site, Dusten Brown and the Cherokee Nation requested that the stay remain in effect while he continued to appeal the Nowata Court’s decision.  The Nowata Court ordered that Veronica’s custody be awarded to Matt and Melanie Capobianco.  According to the Oklahoma Supreme Court, Brown’s extraordinary writ was  “…DENIED. ETC. EMERGENCY STAY BY TH/CT ON 8-30-13, HEREBY DISSOLVED, AND OF NO EFFECT, EFFECTIVE TH/DATE TH/ORDER FILED W/CLERK OF TH/CT.”

What does this mean?  It appears to mean that authorities can now enforce the Nowata court’s order that custody of Veronica be awarded to the Capobiancos.

Will Veronica be returning to James Island, South Carolina?  The gag order remains in effect.

About Lisa Smith-Butler

Associate Professor of Law Charleston School of Law 385 Meeting St., Suite 322B Charleston, S.C. 29403 843.377.2144
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