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Child custody argument escalates; mother escapes, faces charges

Emotions are intense and entangled with gut reaction in situations involving family disputes. In such emotionally charged scenarios, though, one must resist the urge to act rashly. Family law has crafted ways to address such contentious areas as child custody, and disputes related to a child's custody are best left to the courts to settle. A Waco, Texas, mother did not follow this advice, and she now faces child endangerment charges.

Police were called to the scene of a domestic dispute between a young man and woman in Waco. The two were arguing about the custody of their two young children. The man presented documents from the court that claimed he was awarded lawful custody. The woman countered with a claim to have more recent paperwork that instead awarded custody to her. The 22-year-old mother alleged that she had this paperwork in her vehicle. Instead of retrieving the documents though, she locked the car's doors and sped away.

Later that day, the woman turned herself into the Waco Police Department, and she was arrested immediately on two counts of endangering a child, since both children were inside the vehicle when she left the scene earlier.

Instead of arguing with each other, the man and the woman could have allowed attorneys to argue on their behalves. Enforcement of child custody orders from the court or requests for modifications to existing custody arrangements are appropriately addressed in family law court. Otherwise, parents fighting over custody of their children are at increased risk of ending up in family or even criminal court facing allegations. It is always best to discuss the particulars of your circumstances with legal counsel, who can help you achieve your desired results via legal battle rather than verbal debate with a former mate.

Source: Our Town Texas, "Waco: Local Woman Charged With Child Endangerment," Paul J. Gately, July 3, 2014

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