Vincent Davis: Good morning. You’re on the radio with Attorney Vincent Davis and the name of this show is Get Your Kids Back. The show is dedicated to helping families together and to fighting the tyranny of CPS and DCFS social workers. A secondary purpose of this show is to educate parents and relatives or at least show them where to get the necessary information for their fight in the juvenile dependency courts. The final purpose of the show is to remind the people that change can be effectuated at the ballot box at the state and federal levels. Let us unite, vote and elect those who will make the necessary changes.
Today’s show, I’m going to be talking about a case that I did this week and it turned out to be a fairly successful case for my client, the mother of two small children, an 8-year old and a 2-year old. And it all started because this woman did have some prior experience with a juvenile dependency case probably about 10 years ago. And so she knew the importance of educating herself in finding the right legal help. So I’m going to be talking about that case as we go through the day or go through the morning during this hour. But first I’m going to take a call. I have several people in the queue waiting. The first telephone number I’m going to take a call from is area code 714 ending in 67. Good morning. You’re on the radio with Vincent Davis.
Scott: Good morning, Vince. Hi, my name is Scott and I had a child taken from a prior case myself. I had a child adopted when I was locked up in the penitentiary so I had too much time on my hands to be able to get him back. So due to the fact that I had a prior case, they automatically took my son from me from birth when he was born. So what I did was I had to go through all the stuff that CPS asked me to do, you know, the case plan, I filed the case plan and then they just decided they didn’t want to give them back to me. So I had to find an attorney to help me which was your office and then things started changing at that point. But when you did caught up — what I didn’t realize is that when you have a prior child dependency case that they automatically take your next child from you which was really a shock to me since I had totally changed my life around and become a good member of society.
So, you know, all I can say is that how I find it is that they make the rules and they do what they want and if your social worker doesn’t like you, the reports are horrible and bad even though you’re doing your work. And it takes an attorney to straighten them out and started seeing the light in here and to make a difference.
Vincent Davis: Well, Scott, I want to tell you something. You know, one of the things that you initially have said although it happened in your case, it’s not necessarily true. Just because you had a prior CPS case does not mean that they can come and take your child away from you, say a new child. They actually have to have a case against you where they can show some type of risk of child abuse. So it’s not necessarily true but a lot of social workers I think make people believe that — or try to make people believe that if you had a prior case, you automatically lose a new child born into your life and that is not true.
The other thing that I want to tell you is — and you may or may not have known this — if you were in custody, if you were in jail or state prison and the child’s mother catches a CPS case, you have the right to appear in court, to write a letter to the judge and to all the attorneys and to make a plan for your child. The typical case is mother catches a case for physical abuse or domestic violence in a new relationship or drug abuse, something of that nature, and you may be sitting in jail and you had nothing to do with the fact that the child was taken away from the mother.
So, one of the things that you should — if you’re incarcerated or if you have family members that are incarcerated, you should know that that’s not a basis to take the child away from the father. So the father can make arrangements to have that child placed with relatives and basically not have that child placed in foster care. And therefore, the father can make sure that his rights aren’t terminated.
Scott: Right. Well, we did that in this particular case but what seemed to happen was that they just pre-adopted this child out to these people that they thought were suitable and they made it so hard for my family members to try to fight and try to figure it out in the system, that it was just difficult. Their hands were tied. They didn’t know what to do. They couldn’t afford a good attorney and the attorneys that were given were just not applicable to the situation, you know, and not willing to help and it was just a horrible experience. Although my experience this time by getting an attorney, I was able to get my child back and now the mother still having the same problems that she had the first time and it wasn’t due to domestic violence, it was due to drug abuse. And I’ve got the child back into my custody due to the fact that I found an attorney that would help me. And now we’re going to the [0:06:33 inaudible] this time, so.
Vincent Davis: We represented you in getting this child back, right?
Scott: Yes, you did.
Vincent Davis: Okay. And how is the child doing?
Scott: The child is doing great. He’s right now sitting down watching that Mickey Mouse House Club and I’m getting ready to feed them breakfast and we’re going to move on with our day and I think…
Vincent Davis: Well, Scott, thank you…
Scott: …you know, so thank you.
Vincent Davis: All right, Scott, thank you for calling in and sharing.
Scott: Okay, thank you.
Vincent Davis: Bye-bye. So this case I wanted to tell you about and talk about today was a mother called me maybe about on Monday or Tuesday and she still had her children but she told me that she had just gotten notice from a social worker that they are going to come out and take her two children and place them into foster care. Apparently, there had been an ongoing investigation regarding this woman and her children and the father of one of the children who was — well, he’s nowhere to be found. Law enforcement is looking for him right now. Apparently, there’s an arrest warrant out for him.
One of the first things that she did was she was calling around to find a private attorney and I was one of the private attorney she called and eventually she decided to hire me. And she asked me the question, “Do I have to turn the children over?” And I told her, “Well, if there is a warrant for the children to be detained by the social worker, we’re going to have — you’re going to have to obey that warrant and we’ll have to go to court and try to sort this out.”
I asked her what were the possible allegations that the social worker was making against her since she had the children and the social worker had been investigating the case for about — I do think she said about 30 to 45 days which is a long time to be investigating a case and not take the children out of the mother’s custody and then all of a sudden decide to take the children out to their custody. Luckily, she had called me before that had happened because I immediately placed the call to the social worker’s voicemail and I told the social worker that I wanted to talk to the county counsel who represented the social worker because I was concerned that these children weren’t going to be placed with relatives and there were still relatives actually on both sides of the family.
I got a call back from the social worker who said, “You know, we’re going to place the children with relatives.” I happened to mention, you know, the law which is Welfare and Institutions Code Section 309 that I wanted to talk to the county counsel about and the social worker called and left me a voicemail saying that they’re going to place the children with the relatives. And they placed the children with a friendly relative who happened to be the mom’s sister. The mom’s sister is married; I think has a child or two of her own. Both she and her husband are, you know, fine members of the community. They both work and they both indicated that they could take care of the child.
So that was the first step. It was before the first juvenile dependency hearing. So a lot of times, if you call our offices or call an attorney who’s experienced in this area, they might be able to nudge the social worker’s attorney to recommend to the social worker or to remind the social worker that, “Hey, it’s the law. We can’t place — just dump these kids into foster care. We have to look for relatives.” And to this social worker’s credit, he found a relative who was able to take care of the children.
Right now, I’m going to stop that story and I’m going to take another call, it’s area code 818, ending in 13. Hello…
Vincent Davis: Good morning. You’re on with — hello.
Female: Good morning.
Vincent Davis: Good morning. How are you?
Female: I’m good, Mr. Davis, and you?
Vincent Davis: Good. Did you call in to share a story or ask a question?
Female: To share a story that happens to me a few months ago.
Vincent Davis: Okay, go ahead.
Female: I had a son in September 28, 2015, just to make it short, hospital made a big mistake on my lab. Hospital called social worker, social worker took advantage when I was at the hospital, came to my mom’s house and my husband’s house. They threatened me, threatened them to take away my kids. They send me to court. The judge didn’t do anything in the first time because she has no — I mean, what could I say, she had no opinion what to do with my case. So she did the first, second hearing. On the second hearing, she made — social worker drug test me every week just to find if I was doing drugs or anything which I never did any drugs. It was just a mistake from the hospital because my signs came out negative and I came out positive and, I mean, that’s a confusion.
So I went to the social for like almost six months with them. It was really, really hard. They came to my house all the time to check — they wanted to check if I did anything like drugs. They threatened my mom. They even told her she did drugs. They threatened my husband. They made him test to see if he did drugs which he came out negative, too. After the third hearing, the attorney from children’s services decided to do a follicle test on me. My follicle test came out negative and my case was dismissed for no evidence.
Vincent Davis: You said something interesting. You said that at the beginning the hospital made a mistake. What was the mistake they made?
Female: They made a urine — they got somebody else’s urine. That wasn’t mine at the beginning.
Vincent Davis: Oh, I see. And they said that you tested positive for drugs.
Vincent Davis: When you really didn’t test positive for drugs?
Female: No, I tested positive on drugs and my son came out negative.
Vincent Davis: Okay. But was the mistake that the hospital made was the mistake that the drug testing by the hospital of your urine was a mistake and they use someone else’s and it came up positive for drugs?
Female: Yes. Yes, because since I got there, I was having contraction, the nurse wasn’t on my lab, worked to the other girl and she was in my lab worked to me from the other person that’s side of me. It was a tummy [0:14:13 inaudible], so.
Vincent Davis: And so they called the social workers and the social worker started the case against you?
Female: Yes. The next day when I was out of this hour surgery with this blood test, they came to my room to brag me.
Vincent Davis: How did they threaten you?
Female: They’re going to take my kids away.
Vincent Davis: Did you try to explain to them that this must be a mistake and what was their reaction?
Female: Yes, I did. No, that I did drugs, that I did drugs that they want to came into labor and they were sure that I did drugs.
Vincent Davis: And how long did this ordeal last for you going to the children’s court?
Female: Five months.
Vincent Davis: So you and your husband who put the ringer for five months?
Vincent Davis: At the end, what happened? Did the judge just throw the case out?
Female: Yes, she did because I did a follicle test and ended up saying I never did drugs.
Vincent Davis: You mean a hair follicle test?
Female: Yes, a hair.
Vincent Davis: And that goes back — that can go back months.
Vincent Davis: You did the hair follicle test and it came out clean, huh?
Vincent Davis: Well, good for you, good for you. You know, I’m sorry that you went through this. It’s quite a harrowing experience to be put through this for five months on false charges.
Vincent Davis: Well, thank you for calling in and sharing your story with us.
Female: Thank you.
Vincent Davis: Bye-bye.
Vincent Davis: Hello. This is Attorney Vincent Davis.
Daniel: Good morning. This is Daniel. How are you doing today?
Vincent Davis: I’m doing good, Daniel. How are you? Did you call in to share a story or did you want to ask a question? Hello? Okay. It seems like we’ve lost Daniel. I’m going to take another call from area code 310 ending in 99. Hello, you’re on with Attorney Vince Davis.
Male: Good morning, Mr. Davis. Can you hear me?
Vincent Davis: I can hear you loud and clear.
Male: Perfect. Thank you very much.
Vincent Davis: Did you call in to share a story or ask a question?
Male: Share a story.
Vincent Davis: Go ahead.
Male: Yeah. Well, Mr. Davis, you have — give me a minute, I’m sorry, I apologize — represented me on a case with the Department of CPS and at the beginning of your show, you talked about the tyrannical system that the government has set up and I couldn’t agree more with the description of the system. It’s really tyrannical. It’s really, in my mind, in my observation, corrupt and it doesn’t really seem like you’re setup to help anybody from the offset but rather to basically ruin people’s lives. I really don’t know what the —–
Vincent Davis: Hello? Hello?
Male: I’m here, hold on a second. Can you hear me?
Vincent Davis: I can hear you loud and clear but you had gone out there for a second.
Male: I apologize for that. I was driving and my car switched to my Bluetooth.
Vincent Davis: So go ahead, proceed with your story.
Male: And I was accused of basically everything under the sun. They basically wanted, you know, to take my children away permanently and I was able to hire you and I was able to so far my case isn’t completely close yet but basically you’ve been able to show the court that I’m not the person that they wanted to paint. Unfortunately, they believed everything that the mother try to manipulate and, you know, luckily I was able to hire a private attorney to defend myself. And I just want to say that without proper representation, there’s no way that you’re going to — anybody is going to be able to fight the system really unfortunately.
The public defender that they provide although they’re good people probably in general, they are just overwhelmed. They don’t have time to sit down and read everything and provide a proper defense. They’re good attorneys, I’m sure, some of them but they just don’t have the time. They’re overwhelmed of cases. They just want to move to the next and the next because they have 50 cases ahead of them and they don’t have time to do much of anything with any case. So hiring a private attorney, it’s a must if you really want to get your case heard or have any chance against the system.
Vincent Davis: Do you believe that the social workers have treated you unfairly in your case?
Male: I believe so. I believe they’ve been very biased. They don’t seem to care about the truth except what the mother says. And when I tried to explain things, it always turned around. Social workers, again, I don’t think that they’re bad people, I don’t think that they’re in general uncaring. I also think that the system grinds them down and overwhelm them with cases, which is well-known. Social workers have even had a strike against the county for their workload and other reasons but they’re just overwhelmed as well. They really don’t have time to really dig in and ask questions as they should to figure out the truth behind things. I think that they’re overwhelmed. I think they start resenting the system after a while and they have to take it out of something.
For example, many times I’ve tried to call a social worker, leave a message, two or three messages, and I’m not hearing from them for a week. When they order some reports, for example, for a supervised monitored visitations instead of following the court order, you know, they would give me an hour when the court calls for three hours and if [0:22:40 inaudible] well, too bad, too sad, nothing’s going to happen to them. And there’s no recourse for anybody that I know to complain to the social worker. We tried to talk to their supervisor, you know, sometimes their supervisor is not available.
It’s a very, very poorly run, poorly designed system that unfortunately we have to deal with and I think you’re very right at the beginning of your program when you talk about we really need to go to the ballot box and change the system which is grinding people down unfortunately.
Vincent Davis: You know, in your case, did you have problems with an ex-significant other?
Male: Oh, absolutely. This is all this case comes from. In fact, I’m still dealing with it and it’s been about the manipulation of the children. I’m a working professional. I’ve never had any drug problems in my life. I’m a licensed professional, so I can’t be involved in any of that at all. I keep my livelihood. I make a good living but there’s just no reason for this case to, you know, have gone the way it gone and there’s been a lot of manipulation from the children’s mother of course.
Vincent Davis: You know, I want to share a story with you to let you know that you’re not alone in this situation. I met with a gentleman just a couple of days ago. He was referred to me by his family law attorney and he told me, he says, you’re not going to believe the case that the social workers and the mother have contrived against this client. Well, he came to my office and he told me this incredible story. A few months ago, in family law court, the mother had moved the court filed an RFO to get custody of the child and to stop the father’s visits and she had alleged domestic violence against the father. And she had made all of these allegations, stalking, beating, hitting, causing bruises and the father denied all of it.
But the weird thing about the case was that the father and the mother even though they were married, they were getting divorced but when they were out of court, they were meeting for rendezvous, for sexual rendezvous. They were still seeing each other but in court they were fighting and the mother was making all of these allegations. Well, some of the allegations she made against the father doing certain things happened to be at times where they were at a local hotel together.
Now luckily for the father, he and his attorney went to the hotel and got the video of the mother, he and the mother, you know, checking in and checking out of the hotel during the times that the mother said he was beating her and stalking her on the street. Well, they showed that video to the judge in a three-day trial in the family law court. The judge found that the mother was not being truthful, she was not credible, she had lied under-oath, all of these different things.
Flash forward a few months, now the father — excuse me, now the mother has gone to DCFS and has alleged that the father is sexually abusing his three-year old daughter. Now, the social worker — the mother never tells the social worker about what happened in family law court. The social worker without contacting the father and without even talking to him about the case stops his visits and files a case against him. He and his attorney try to — his family law attorney tried to explain to the social worker what had happened in family court just at the end of 2015. Well, the social worker totally ignored it, is continuing on with the case and the father has to show up in court next week because he has lost all visitation and contact with his child because the mother has alleged that he has sexually abused his three-year old child.
Now I asked the father, I said, “Do you have the transcripts of the hearing in family law court?” He reached down in his brief case and he pulls out, you know, probably five inches of transcripts from a three-day trial. I said, “Do you still have that video tape?” He hands me the DVD of the video tape and what the family law attorney had done was matched up the mother’s allegations with times and dates to show the mother and the father coming back and forth, checking in and checking out of this hotel. I mean, they were meeting on multiple occasions during the week.
So we’re going to be using that evidence in the juvenile dependency court and I think and the only thing that I can think of is that this mother is trying to get the father out of picture because she allegedly has a new boyfriend and wants the new boyfriend to adopt the child and they want to live a happy, you know, life without the real father of the child being involved. She’s using this to alienate him from the case or trying to alienate him from the case which is going to be I think extremely hard but it’s just incredible that the social worker won’t even look or consider these allegations of what happened in the family law case.
So, you know, one parent, sometimes mothers, some other times manipulate situations like our last caller’s case and they get them into juvenile dependency case and they try to bury them, they try to stop the visits, you know, all that type of thing. By the way, stopping visits with a father who has a significant visitation has a significant impact on the child support that’s going to be ordered to be paid in the family law court. The less visitation the father has, the more child support that he has to pay. That may be another reason for a lot of parents making false allegations against prior spouses.
I’m going to take another call right now. It’s from area code 760 ending in 25. Good morning, you’re on the radio with Attorney Vince Davis. Good morning.
Vincent Davis: Hello. You’re on with Attorney Vince Davis.
Male: How are you doing, Mr. Davis?
Vincent Davis: Good. How are you?
Male: Doing good, doing good.
Vincent Davis: Did you have a question or a story to share with us?
Male: I want to share a story.
Vincent Davis: Go ahead.
Male: I had a case in juvenile dependency as well and your law firm has represented me and I also work with DCFS, my independent contractor and the story was this one just kind of caught me by surprise. A teenage girl was taken from our home, false allegations were assumed and they did the same protocol and then a father ended up in prison or county jail under sanction for false allegation. He was released and they proceeded in the juvenile dependency court and eventually the daughter came forward and says she wanted to admit that the allegations were false but she didn’t know who to talk to.
And given everything going forward, she did not want to do the testing for the special assault at the hospital and asked them she wanted to admit the claims at that point. It’s just a very ironic story and the social worker is still trying to see given that the child want to come forward at that point in the juvenile court.
Vincent Davis: And so what happened?
Male: At this point, I don’t know, I don’t get to follow this case, case by case. I’m assuming the child may have been dismissed — the case may have been dismissed. The kid herself was having other issues and so she was transferred and so I wouldn’t have been able to follow up. I even believe she might have been detained into a juvenile hall, I’m not sure. So it was a very, very ironic case.
Vincent Davis: Now, what was your involvement in the case? Were you a relative or a parent?
Male: No. I work in the field and so when I see certain cases and I hear the phone calls, I do the [0:33:30 inaudible] with the social worker that calls from the county and so I actually get to hear several different cases and this one I hear was just kind of caught me by surprise because the allegations were made and then the father wasn’t immediately arrested. They’re talking about a teenage girl, I think she was 12 or 13 years old and then eventually he was arrested and the proceedings kept going forward. It just all didn’t match up for some reason, you know, it’s so skeptical.
Vincent Davis: That happens a lot in our judicial system especially in juvenile court. When people, you know, raise the sex abuse sign, sometimes we kind of go kind of crazy, you know, overboard because we want to make sure that we want to protect the children and we should. But a lot of times, people — social workers don’t stop and look at the evidence. It is really important if you’ve been accused — we had a case this week. I wasn’t the trial attorney from my office, another attorney did the trial but this guy, our client was the father of two children and the mother had two other children. And the two older children and the mother concocted a story of our client sexually abusing the two older children and, of course, if he had sexually abused the two older children, the two younger children which were actually his biological children, were also in danger.
And I met with the guy many times at my office and went over evidence and went over things that had happened in the past. And when the case was taken to trial, one of the alleged victims, you know, couldn’t keep the story straight, so she was deems not credible. The second victim, it was a similar thing, she just wasn’t credible. It didn’t stand up to all of the evidence that we had gathered and we had gathered a lot of evidence on this case. We had put a lot of work into it.
In the end, the judge threw out the sexual abuse allegations and our client was then allowed, start visiting with his children, again, unmonitored and we’re going to be moving to court to try to get his overnight visits back. But it’s just, you know, incredible — and this guy’s case has been taken, you know, it’s been probably about six months, six months and he has had to go under the scrutiny of being a sexual perpetrator against children. All of this was not really seeing his children but luckily, we were able to win that case.
Now, let me tell you this, let me tell you this, does child abuse ever happened? Yes. Do people sexually abuse children? Yes. But we’re dedicated to helping those people that are falsely accused.
Vincent Davis: So in this particular case, this guy was falsely accused. And now, you know, after we won the case in court, one of the interest things is my attorney told me, she said, you know, no one apologize to him. It was as if case over, you can leave now and go back to business but I’ve actually sat with this guy in my office in my conference room and he has just broken down and cried because he can’t believe that someone would do this just to gain advantage over him or just to get back at him. In this particular case, one of the things that he always believed caused these allegations to come up was the mother was trying to get more child support from him. They had broken up, they had just broken up. He left her — he was the sole supporter of the mother and the four children even though only two of them were his and he stopped doing that.
And his payback was false sexual abuse allegations. And sometimes — you know, I asked the attorney on this case, I said, “You know, what did you get the feeling that you get from the social worker?” They still believe that it happened. No matter what the judge said that it didn’t happen, they still believe that it happened. So it’s a tough situation to be accused of something that you didn’t do and those types of cases happened more than we think and until you’re falsely accused of something, you probably don’t appreciate it as much.
A few months ago, I had a client who was accused of something and he told me, he says, “You know, I always thought people that were accused of these things actually did it and they were the scam of the earth.” You know, they were the scam of the earth and he said, “Now, here I am being accused of something falsely and I know that there are people out there looking at me like I’m the scam of the earth.” And he said, “You never really know and you never really appreciate something until it happens to you,” but you could say that for anything in life.
Listen, thank you for calling and sharing your story. I really appreciate it.
Male: Thank you, Mr. Davis.
Vincent Davis: Bye-bye.
Vincent Davis: So getting back to my original story for today about the woman who called me before her children were taken. So the social worker’s credit as I said, the social worker placed the two children, I think they’re 8 and 2 years old, with the maternal aunt. So fast-forward a couple of days, we go to court for the arraignment detention hearing which is the first hearing and you get to see all the charges or all the allegations against the parent. And on her case, the paperwork was about a quarter of an inch thick. Now when I originally talked to her, you know, she didn’t know what was happening and she couldn’t imagine what the allegations were against her and what the evidence was against her and unfortunately, you don’t find that out until the first day.
One of the things I want to tell all the listeners that if you ever appeared at the arraignment detention hearing, you have the automatic right to continue it one day. You know, nothing like getting a quarter inch or a half inch package of discovery and evidence against you and then being told, well, you have to prepare that morning to go to court, to appear before the judge within an hour or two. It’s very difficult thing to do even if you’re Johnnie Cochran.
But we got the package against her and we reviewed it and there was a lot of evidence, a lot of circumstantial evidence about allegations of her being a risk to the child. They really didn’t say that she had abused the child or the children. They really didn’t say that she — they were trying to say that she had a drug problem which is kind of funny because she had taken a drug test for the social worker. Apparently, she tells me that they came out clean but the social worker never mentioned that. Instead, the social worker mentioned in the reports several times, mother has a history of methamphetamine use, which the mother told me was true 10 years ago but, you know, she hadn’t used drugs in about 10 years and she tested clean.
So I asked the county counsel during the lunch break, I said, “Hey, would you call the social worker and find out about the drug test that she took because it’s not mention at any of the paperwork and see if we can get a copy of that write over or fax over because I’d like to mention that to the judge because it was all negative about the mom and I wanted to mention to the judge, “Hey, my client volunteered to be drug tested two days ago and if she’s such, you know, drug abuser, she should be testing dirty.” And of course, to the credit they brought the piece of evidence and they gave it to us at 1:30 and it said the mom had tested which they have tested clean. But there was a lot of other evidence.
And I sat down and I had a conversation with the children’s attorney. At every juvenile dependency hearing the children are appointed one or more attorneys and in this case the court had appointed a woman to represent the two children. Now, mine’s attorneys, you know, they’re across the board. There are some that are very good. There are some that are very bad. There’s a lot in between just like everything else in life, you know, on a bell curve, statistical bell curve but this what — and I did not know her and she was very reasonable.
And she said to me, she said, Mr. Davis, I made my pitch to her about having the children released back. And part of my pitch was, “Hey, if you don’t agree to release the children back to the mom today would you support the mom moving in with the maternal aunt and uncle who had the children placed with them?” And she told me yes and mainly because I think it was because of the clean drug test and the allegations, you know, the insinuations about her being a drug addict were false and a lot of the other allegations were allegations of omission rather than commission, meaning she didn’t really do anything.
She let things happen in the house that the father of the youngest child did to the children but it wasn’t really anything that she had done affirmatively to injure these children.
So anyway we appeared in front of the judge at the detention hearing and the judge made a ruling that she wasn’t going to return the children to the mother that first hearing but that she was going to allow the mother to live with the aunt and uncle if the aunt and uncle agreed to that because only the aunt was at court, her husband was at court and of course he had to agree before the mother moved in. But she also recommended or the judge also told that the mother could spend the night over the aunt and uncle’s house on a monitored basis until we come back to court if the uncle didn’t agree that let her live there.
So that turned out to be at this early stage of the case what I think was a good result for our client. We’ve come up with the strategy that hopefully the next four to six weeks we can get these children back to our client in their own home. So I just wanted to show that with the listeners because it is important that you start laying a foundation even before you go to the first hearing. And I like clients who call me, you know, when they still have the children or when the children just getting detained so that I can give them some advice and help strategize and set up the case for what’s going to be hopefully a positive turnout at each hearing that we go to.
A lot of clients want to hire you and they expect you to hit a grand slam homerun the first hearing. The courts and most judges in these types of cases don’t allow grand slams in the first hearing so you have to get used to the singles, the doubles, the triples, and win your case that way little by little because it’s hard sometimes with the amount and enough evidence and the evidence are rules that are in my opinion, you know, against parents to hit this grand slam. So a lot of times it’s figuring out a strategy where you can win little by little, hearing by hearing.
I’m going to take one more call, it’s area code 818 ending in 54. Hello, you’re on with Attorney Vincent Davis.
Jamie: Good morning, Mr. Davis. How are you?
Vincent Davis: I’m doing good. How are you doing?
Jamie: I’m wonderful. My name is Jamie Wakefield and I wanted to start off with saying something on behalf of all parents before I got to my story and I know we have a little bit of time here. I personally feel and I feel that I speak for all parents when I say this, the DCFS maintain their agenda to protect and serve the community under none false pretenses. Their original agenda family preservation used to be to protect the children, however, that is hardly their agenda now. Children in court needs to become an open court and it seems that individual appointed by DCFS to represent the state have been diluted by the monetary value therefore they are no longer representative of DCFS; they have become representatives of themselves. And I hate to say this but this seems like a very bad pandemic.
Vincent Davis: You know, the concept of the open court has been, that we talked about, you know, when you don’t have an open court, people get the feeling that it’s kind of a start chamber where the, you know, no one knows and no one’s holding anyone accountable. And sometimes you get that feeling in juvenile courts. I practice in juvenile courts, you know, up and down in the state of California and I can see how people feel that because I feel it sometimes but, you know, it’s nothing like having an open courtroom where the public and the press can come in and comment and hold accountable what is happening in our judicial system.
The press is extremely important in my opinion and place an important role in every aspect of our life. You can just look at the current presidential elections or presidential campaigns and the press is a significant contributor to, you know, on both sides of defense and it gives these people information as to what’s happening. In juvenile court in Los Angeles County, the press aren’t allowed unless you get special order and there’s a special procedure for allowing press to come in and report on a case.
By law, the juvenile dependency proceedings are confidential. I don’t think that confidentiality works to the benefit of families, may work to the benefit of keeping a child named out of the public newspaper or something but I think it does more harm than good. There was a rumor I heard and it’s just a rumor, I don’t know this for a fact. That the prior presiding judge of the juvenile court in Los Angeles tried to help legislate, help develop some legislation that the court would be — juvenile courts could be open to the public or in some passion, some type of limited public or press, you know, allowed in the court.
And what had happened was I guess the legislature took up the idea, I guess initially they liked the idea. But when the legislative research was being done to draft such legislation, the rumor is they got a call from the federal government in Washington, D.C. and all of these cases are funded and the laws are basically arise out of federal laws with the, I believe it’s the Health and Human Service Agency. And when the Health and Human Service Agency found out that we were going to try to make these proceedings public or opened up a little bit, they said, “Well, you can do that but if you do that we’re going to pull out our federal funding.”
And for my understanding juvenile dependency court systems in California and in every state, you know, relies on heavy federal funding. And so I think that in order to change that to get this court open we’re going to have to do that on a federal level, right to our congressmen, our senators and try to change that particular making juvenile dependency court a secret.
Jamie, I’m sorry to interrupt you but go ahead with your story.
Jamie: Now, as far as my story goes I’m going to try to make it a short and complete as possible. Now, I have had four prior children removed for me due to false allegations. They had no withholding evidence and they kept my children. Those four children are residing with my mother. So I basically refused to even fight for those children because I was frustrated with the system and anything could happen to a parent like this.
So I had two other children after this incident. And what I want really touch on is that it seems like the HIPAA privacy laws must apply in these cases due to the fact that our medical record numbers or let me say mine personally. My medical record number had been flagged by DCFS as a child abuser from the four previous cases that I just spoke about. And when I went to have my son whose name is Jaylan, when I went to have Jaylan at the doctor’s office or, excuse me, when I went to have an ultrasound, when I came out of the ultrasound I was standing in front of the nurse and he was on the phone with the social worker and I heard her say and I’m looking directly at her and say, yes, Jamie again is here. And then she said, “Well, I can’t tell you the sex or anything about the baby because she’s not out yet, little did she know I was standing in front of her listening to this conversation.
When she noticed that I was standing there listening she hanged up the phone. Then when I went to have the child three months later I tested clean and the child tested clean however there was a call for general neglect to Holy Cross Hospital. How do you call general neglect on a child that is a newborn because of someone’s past history of what’s under their medical record? They should not be but it is. And this is happening to me, parents, all across the nation. That’s sort of like that it’s just some sort of a pandemic.
The thing that scares me most is that when facing that the social worker was not going to detain my child at the hospital, I overheard the nurse on the phone by my bedside stating, he’s in the [0:53:29 inaudible] explaining that they were going to find another way to take my child would be illegal. And that is basically what happened. I had my child, took my child home and then about a month or two later she came in for a penis circumcision gone wrong and apparently children’s hospital decided to detain my child in safe that my child had been abused for penis circumcision gone wrong. And however that was not — that is not what they detained my child for. They detained my child for failure to try.
And the thing that is really scary is that I took my child into the hospital because it had something wrong with him and I was so nervous, scared that his skin was coming off of his penis. The fact that I left that hospital and I didn’t sign any paperwork and decided to go to his doctor the next morning which I had every right to do, they told — the social worker at children’s hospital called DCFS and said that my child had been neglected. And the police came to my house and basically told me that I had to take my son back to children’s hospital where he was detained. When they got the child I did not see my child for four months. This has been an ongoing case.
Vincent Davis: Wow, that’s incredible. I want to thank you for sharing that with us. Are you interested in getting in political side of changing laws?
Jamie: Yes, I am and in fact I am at this point getting ready to create an organization of my own to help family get their children out of the foster system.
Vincent Davis: You know, that’s something that I would like to help you do. Would you give me a call at my office next week?
Jamie: Yes, I would. Yes, I would.
Vincent Davis: Well, thank you, Jamie, for calling in and sharing. We have to wrap up and I have some few comments to make before we end the show, but thank you for calling.
Jamie: Thank you so much.
Vincent Davis: Before we are in the show there’s a couple of things that I want to mention. I mention these things at the end of every show. If you have a juvenile dependency case, if you’re a parent or a relative or if you know somebody that has a juvenile dependency case, please stress to them that they need to get expert and experienced legal help. And the faster you do it the better. A lot of times people come to me after they have been in the system for many months or, you know, a year and they come to me and they want me to try to get their children back. It’s hard to do sometimes because a lot of the things that have happened previously I would have done differently. So think about getting that help right up front. It will save you a lot of heartache in the long run.
The second thing you have to do if you have or involved in one of these cases if you have to get information, try to educate yourself so that you can have intelligent discussions with your attorney about the who, what, where, when, why, how of the case. Now, you can get this information on the internet. Everybody is on the internet. We can get the internet on any device you have, on your phone, on your tablet, on your laptop, on your desktop. Google knows all. The other thing that’s a resource or free resource that it’s for — it’s for attorneys really but I think that it helps. I’ve cut a lot of articles or explanations out of there and sent them to clients. It’s called the dog book, D-O-G. So if you just Google with juvenile dependency dog book, I think that that will come up. And I think I asked my internet web guy, Nelson, to post this dog book at our website for our radio show where you can look at it and download it. It’s a free resource in California.
And hopefully, Nelson, you’re listening today. You can make sure that that dog book is on the site. I just got a message from Nelson who says, yes, it’s on the site. So go to the site, talkradioexperts.com and find out how to download that book and look at it. But you also have to get information. You can’t get it in the vacuum because you’re probably not a trained lawyer. Talk to your lawyer, strategize with your lawyer, ask him or her the who, what, where, when, why and how of every case or of what’s going to be done in your case.
The last thing that I want to mention is vote. Please register a vote. I was on social media today and I shared on my own Facebook site a link for registering online for the primary elections coming up. So remember to vote. Remember to do this and register online. The last thing that I want to mention is we want to elect family-friendly state legislators and we want to represent family-friendly judges. Judges are elected or appointed and if they’re appointed they face reelection. So remember you have the power and the power is your vote. Please register. We’ll see you next week on the radio at 8:00 AM on Saturday. Bye-bye.
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