Justice Delayed is Justice Denied

Since last spring we have been assisting Heather Moody in her battle in Milam County to regain custody of her children because the arguments made by her soon-to-be ex-husband and in-laws focused almost exclusively on her choice to homeschool her children. In the hearing for temporary orders, the judge called home schoolers observing the public hearing a “mob” and later removed the children from their mother, stating that the father was “more stable” in spite of the fact that he traveled in his work two to three weeks out of each month.

Following the hearing in March, this fit, godly mother has had “visitation” with her children after being their stay-at-home mom for all of their lives. Because the judge has a history of making biased rulings (not surprising since the paternal grandparents are represented by his former law firm), the only real chance Heather has to get her children back is to have a jury trial and hope her peers give her custody of the children. The trial was scheduled to begin this Wednesday.

A couple of weeks ago, Heather’s attorney said she was concerned because the opposing counsel began to make statements saying he had not received documents from the psychologist who had examined the children. They have been aware of this psychologist, and the fact that she is counseling the children and Heather, since November of 2011, and yet they waited until the week before the trial to raise this issue. The judge even asked them if they had deposed her, and they acknowledged they had not.

This was the epitome of the “pot calling the kettle black” since the father has continued to refuse to provide all that the judge has ordered. He has not provided employment probation records or 2011 tax returns and bank statements that were ordered by the judge. Nevertheless, Heather’s attorney was ready to go to trial.  Opposing counsel, however, used the excuse of lacking records from the psychologist as a reason to ask for a postponement.

In spite of strong opposition from Heather’s attorney explaining that she was ready to go to trial and it was in the best interest of the children to have this matter resolved, Judge Youngblood ordered the trial rescheduled for November 26. As her attorney pointed out, this action adds to the cost of the case and appears to be a tactic by opposing counsel to cause the bankruptcy of this mother. Please continue to pray for Heather and for THSC as we seek to raise financial support to thwart this attempt to take children simply because of superior financial support and what appears to be a biased judge.

Comments

  1. Jim Loose says

    My prayer is that Heather Moody and her children endure the unendurable now and that their steadfastness provide more proof of how easy it is for the family law system to abuse innocent parents. What Heather is going through is an intolerable insult to American’s most basic notions of legality, common sense, and even decency. If only her case was a terribly tragic exception to the rule! May her suffering help make it clear to lawmakers and the citizens of Texas that her case is not an exception to the rule. Her case is the norm: unnecessary suffering and plundering of the families of innocent parents, made possible only by weaponizing children … as the system has done with Heather’s children … as it does almost 3,000 times every day in courts all over our nation.

    • Richard Simonson says

      Thank you Mr. Loose for your comment and prayers for my daughter, Heather. I find your statement about the NORM: unnecessary suffering and plundering of the families of innocent parents, made possible only by weaponizing children. I find this statement quite interesting in that it is my opinion that my small grandchildren are suffering the most throughout the process of this case. I can testify that they are overly tired, most generally upset with one parent or the other, wanting to fix something out of their control, wanting their mom and dad to get back together. One of the children even told me—–Grandpa, I can fix whats wrong between my mom and dad, but I’m just a kid and nobody will listen to me! The back and forth between parents is playing on their minds every minute of the day. I pray for Gods strength for them as they continue to grow.

      • Jim Loose says

        Hello Mr. Simonson: nice to meet you, although I wish the circumstances were different. I believe they will become different but it is very sad that the price of change is so high.

        We Conservatives are so right when we complain about intrusive government. Be it excessive taxes, wasteful public spending, dumb red tape of all sorts, we Conservatives have our minds around the problem. It is time for us to get our minds around the extreme government intervention that usually occurs in the typical divorce in which one parent or the other decides to treat their marriage like it is a grown up version of “going steady” (when you get down to basics, this is what Heather’s husband is doing).

        The situation is dishonorable most of the time when the couple involved is childless … but it is not ruinous. Add children to the mix and it is likely to become ruinous as local public and private interests weaponize those children and become a burden (economic and otherwise, as I’ll show below) of many years’ duration on all the members of that former family (all in the name, of course, of the saintliest of motivations … how easy it is for government to say it cares about children … and what suckers we citizens often are when government says that).

        Here is just some of the cost we are all paying for our current family law system. Compared to children from nuclear families (meaning a family in which biological mom and dad live with their offspring under the same roof) children from non-nuclear families (meaning any other arrangement ):

        • Are between 2-1/2 and nearly 6 times more likely to experience child poverty;
        • Are 2-3 times more likely to exhibit a significant emotional or behavioral problem;
        • Are more than twice more likely to find themselves in state reform institutions;
        • Have a 77% higher likelihood of being physically abused;
        • Have an 87% higher likelihood of being harmed by physical neglect;
        • Have a 74% higher likelihood of suffering emotional neglect;
        • Have an 80% higher likelihood of suffering serious injury as a result of abuse.

        In addition to raising flagrant moral issues, these bullet points make an economic case: in aggregate, non-nuclear families are engines of economic distress. Compared to nuclear families, any other family form in aggregate produces social pathologies at an astonishing rate—which government then spends our taxes to try to ameliorate.

        What is the solution to this? The solution is not pro-marriage initiatives funded by government. Governments that can’t balance their own check books are hardly to be looked to for telling us how to do something far more complex. Nor do we need social science “experts” whose personal lives are no better than the rest of ours’ to tell us how to do it.

        What we need to do is shut down the easy exit ramps out of marriage.

        Imagine what would happen if Heather’s husband wasn’t being rewarded (as a practical matter) for reneging on his vows. He would either stay in the marriage (overwhelmingly the best choice for most children) and deal with whatever it is that’s bothering him enough that he wants to renege on his vows, or he would abandon his family and face the appropriate legal consequences of loss of property, very high child support bills, and alimony. Right now, he does not face that choice. So he does not make that choice. Instead, the family law system weaponizes his children for him via highly subjective claims about “best interest of the child” which are usually nothing but irresolvable differences of opinion (i.e., usually there are no testable “facts” that a judge/fact finder can find) … and by this means of generating a legal case that leaves Heather in what amounts to a boxing match with a cloud, he escapes the stark choice he should actually be forced to make here.

        Today there are about 3,000 new cases filed every day in our nation based on the same mumbo jumbo which, in the final analysis, is what is tearing Heather and her family apart. That is the underlying problem that needs to be addressed. My prayer is that more and more of us wake up to the fact that the similarities in these cases far outweigh the differences — and we take the right kinds of action necessary to save the next generation from the same catastrophe of 50% divorce rate that has engulfed our own (with the grotesque costs mentioned above).”

        We must continue to pray for Heather and for all of us while enduring the workings of the family law system. But we need to take steps in the political realm too. Let us heed the wisdom of the African proverb: “When you pray, move your feet.”

        • says

          Jim, Couldn’t agree more with all your facts, figures and analysis of this ongoing modern tragedy. But let me add a little emotion to all those ‘black & white’ facts. Let me speak for the children. Maybe not while they are still caught up in the day-to-day hope for that Miracle that never comes, but later, after they’ve matured. I AM one of those children and now nearly 60. You wrote; “What we need to do is shut down the easy exit ramps out of marriage.” So VERY true!!

          My parents separated when I was nine, dragging out their divorce for several more years, and I’ve NEVER ‘gotten over it.’ That ‘event’ that I and my five siblings had absolutely NOTHING to do with causing and were powerless to alter, delivered a lifetime of negative results for all six of us, causing several an early death. The ONLY one positive thing I can think of resulting from their divorce, and it was only true for me, was my absolute refusal to consider ANY other option but “till death due us part” in my own marriage. (Of course, maybe it was my Christian faith instead) We had our share of bumps, but when there is NO exit it’s amazing what people will do to get along, and… love grows if given that chance.

          Back to ‘shutting down easy exit ramps.’ For the last forty years or so, when the subject of divorce came up in conversation I’d offer the following ‘solution’ that is, of course, just ‘wishful thinking’ but it does express the seriousness of my intent: If I were king and a parent wanted to divorce for ANY reason other than proven PHYSICAL abuse, they should have to voluntarily submit themselves to be shamed in public by their neighbors and strangers too. Bring back the Stocks at the Courthouse Square, be locked in for 30 days with an endless supply of rotten tomatoes to be thrown. My contention is that the selfishness of those who file for divorce is so great that, under such a condition, it would all but disappear.

          • Jim Loose says

            Hello Ed:

            I think we save rotten tomatoes for movies these days … but I hear you. :-)

            Just multiply your and your siblings injuries times a million-+ kids a year for 40 years (plus their two million parents per year) — and you have contemporary America. We are a deeply wounded society and it is self-inflicted. I contend that even if we work intelligently on the budget, terrorism, and de-industrialization combined, we will make little progress in redressing our nation’s ills. A nation that destroys the productive capacity of nuclear families (with all the lifelong injuries that implies) at the rate our nation does is a nation with societal leprosy. We are in trouble and we are not paying attention (yet, God grant) to the largest source of our problems: we keep killing the engines of progress.

            Thanks for sharing your story. It may help.

  2. Tim Storey says

    How convenient that the judge postponed the case until after his election also. We (the residents of Milam Co) need to hear from one of her attorneys’ to let us know how to get involved through letter writing or whatever else we can do.

    Several of us have wanted to question these things publicly, but in order to not hurt Heather’s case we have refrained from doing so. The last counsel I got on this was that we should wait until after the trial to do anything politically. But, it’s not enough for one of us activists to start this without hearing from her attorney as to what is best for her case.

    • Richard Simonson says

      Thank you Mr. Storey for your continued interest in my Daughters case. We are also trying to find out how it would be appropriate to put her case to the media locally and otherwise. I will contact Heathers attorney for advice on this and try to give you a followup.I also agree with you that it seems to be real convienient for the Judge to pospone this trial untill after the election for a new Judge. I know who I would vote for. In my opinion, my Daughter has been a focused hardworking, “Stay At Home Mom” of which her husband an her agreed to since he wanted numeous children, which she agreed to also. In this case I feel that the mother should have her children live with her since she has taken care of them 24/7 of the every waking moment from each of their three births. Her husbands occupation takes him away from home several weeks out of every month in the past and sometimes longer. Since she has not worked a secular job for a number of years, she has been forced to go to work outside the home. In view of this Heather has acquired a job as a nurse in the local hospital and clinics holding down a repected position within the health community. What has her Husband proved–? That he can fly a plane, maintain his household with the help of his parents and “wife”. The issue should not be between Brian, Karl and Lynda Moody versus Heather Moody, it should be between Brian Moody versus Heather Moody in that his parents do not have the right to take a mothers children away just because the Moodys’ are well known within the community and apparently have plenty of money to spend on a trial. Nor do Heathers parents have the right to take these children away from their mother. Her husband is over forty years old. You would think by now that he would want to be able to do something with his life without his parents checkbook. I Know My Daughter Sure Can.

    • Tami Tovar says

      Please, please, please make this public and invite the new stations. I have an eerily similar case and am on the verge of going public with my own in another county. Judicial abuse is rampant and should be brought to the public’s attention that children’s lives are at stake. My kids could testify that they were molested because a judge allowed grandparents to interfere. In fact, they want to scream it. I don’t blame them.
      My point: kids’ best interests are not being considered by the judges in Texas. More importantly social studies, and ad litems have little to no supervision in review of wether they have even followed court published guidlines or done due diligence in investigation. Add those influences to judges who do not care enough to take the time it takes to do their job correctly or well and you get terrible injustices perpetrated on children by the courts. In our case, the courts have become a sex slave trade for pedophiles. Highest bidder wins.

      • says

        Tami,

        You wrote; “courts have become a sex slave trade for pedophiles. Highest bidder wins.”

        What a poignant and (should be) alarming statement! It could be a headline or bumper sticker. (Unfortunately, there are quite a few Americans who don’t read more than that, and they vote too.)

        JUDGES: 21st CENTURY CHILD SEX-SLAVERS

        Those Judges, with their hypocritical demand for ‘gentile decorum’ inside their courtrooms, need to get publicly scorned for the vile hell they create in the real world!

    • says

      Tim, THSC PAC will endorse in this race. We are currently seeking responses from both candidates. It is in the interest of justice that a judge who is elected will be fair and impartial and make rulings that are in the best interest of the children! We will make our endorsement known soon and encourage those of you who live in Milam county to get involved in the campaign.

    • Jacqueline says

      Thank you all for your support. I hope one day Home Schooling will not be attacked in the courts.
      Some people are uneducated or ignorant about what home schooling is and do not understand it is a real option for educating children just like choosing a public education over a private one. Many educated people choose this for their children. I had a professor for my Business law class a few terms ago and him and his wife decided to home school their four children. This man is a Lt Colonel in the United States Air Force retiring next year, an attorney , a professor teaching online courses at an Accredited University, and is published.
      Home schooling is being attacked in the Moody case because it is the only thing the opposing side thinks they have that can gain them full custody. It has been proven these children have been educated and well socialized by Heather Moody, after all she was the primary influence in their lives. How well they have done in public school and all the friends they made at their New Braunfels school should be testimony enough to the parenting of Heather Moody. Since their father got involved these poor kiddos are now attending their 3rd school in a year in half. I guess they did too well at the first two and they need to find one they won’t do well in to “prove their case.” WEAK.
      I admire my sister so very much for the dedication she has shown to raising her children and the strength she has had throughout the entire ordeal. She is a truly amazing woman.

  3. Alice says

    The pain this mother is going through at the hands of her soon to be ex-husband and his parents. Do you really think they are doing all this because they think the children are being abused? It’s the typical hurt the mother at all cost because the parents are getting divorced. Sad, the children always pay. I have a Grandaughter that just Graduated Suma comlaude. Yes, she was home schooled in the state of FL. She decided to go to public school 2 months before her 11th grade finished. She was on the dean’s list in that 2 months with over a 4.0 GPA. Thanks to being home schooled. (She did’nt majically get good study habits.) She carried that for all of the Senior year and recieved Bright Futures scholarship and graduating with honors. She is now in college. If you ask me, Heather, is a loving mother and deserves to have her children. She is a fully involved Mom. It’s wrong what the husband and in-laws are doing. They could be working together to make a smoother transition for the children since they are getting divorced. Let the children feel loved not torn apart.

  4. Richard Simonson says

    My wife and I want to thank all of the people around the state an country that have been praying for our Daughter in this Cameron custody case. Our prayers also go out to all of you enduring similar situations. Respectfully–Patti and Richard Simons. We also thank Mr. Lambert and the THSC for their continued support and prayers.

  5. Jacqueline says

    These children were with their mother for years and then abruptly placed with father. When reflecting back and trying to understand what kind of people would put children through something like this for their own personal selfish wants I could not help but think of the Judge in the Moody case. Anyone can look from the outside in and see it is CLEAR those kids would still be enjoying their original public school, friends, be with mother and have some type of stability through this ordeal. But of course the judge granted his decision in favor of a Milam county resident also going back several generations. How convenient during a re-election. After all Heather Moody and her family are just outsiders in the judges eye and the opposing side presents a good way to secure votes. I went ahead and cut out some of the “About” page on face book of the Judge that made this decision.

    “I firmly believe it is essential that citizens have confidence in their courts and the judges that preside over them. That confidence will only develop with the exercise of courteous, efficient, impartial, and well reasoned judgment. I remind myself often that the 20th District Court belongs to the people of Milam County, and presiding over it is both a high privilege and somber responsibility.

    I’m a fifth-generation Milam County native, having been born in Cameron and raised on a farm in the Little River bottom.” Judge John Young Blood

    ” Well reasoned,” Does it seem well reasoned to remove these kids from their mother, all they have known unitl the final trial. Heather Moody is a loving, compassionate mother who raised her children well enough to test exceptionally well in their new public school, extremely social, fun and they even received awards their first term there. They also are known to adjust very well to change. Their lives have been turned upside down. In one of the hearings when a date was being set for the original trial and the opposing side kept trying to extend the date out as far as possible, what sticks out in my mind is when the judge said, ” it doesn’t make a difference to me when you guys have the hearing.” These kids lives and stability have been flipped upside down but it doesn’t make a difference apparently how long it takes to work it out and get them back to what they know.

    Maybe November is best, because maybe this judge will not be re-elected and someone who is” well reasoned” and” impartial” will oversee the hearing.

    I hope when the people of Milam county make their votes they will keep their own children in mind.

  6. Beverly Boytim says

    Correct me if I am wrong – but if this judge is voted out, his replacement will not be in office until Jan. He will be upset that “homeschoolers” got him booted out and is more likely to judge Heather’s case wrongly… and once it is ruled on in that court, she will have to go to the next higher court – right?

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