Legal kidnapping': CPS took infant from mother for four months; judge rules 'disinformation' used
By: Dave Urbanski September 28, 2018 3 min read
Amanda Weber brought her 10-month-old son Zayvion to the emergency room at Children's Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, in May because he'd been constantly coughing and previously had been treated for sleep apnea, Minnesota Public Radio reported.
Zayvion was hospitalized overnight, but Weber departed for Little Falls with her son the next morning prior to a doctor performing a follow-up examination, the outlet said. KMSP-TV reported that Weber wanted to go home after a long wait for another doctor and signed that she was leaving against medical advice.
The next day Child Protective Services took Zayvion and placed him in foster care, KMSP said.
A nurse and social worker suspected Weber of medical neglect, MPR reported, after which a Child in Need of Protection or Services petition was filed — and then a heart-wrenching, four-month battle was on.
Weber joined forces with Dwight Mitchell of the Family Preservation Foundation in order to get her son back.
“Amanda submitted document after document from the doctors — no, he didn’t have a severe case of apnea; his apnea was under control. He didn’t need any medication; there was nothing wrong with him, he just had a cold," Mitchell told KMSP. "So this started a chain reaction, and when we proved to social services that there was nothing wrong with the child, they still wouldn’t relent."
"The social worker, she had the information that my son, in fact, was not medically neglected," Weber, 25, told MPR. "And I had, in fact, met all his needs and provided for my son and his diagnoses."
Mitchell referred to authorities' actions as “legal kidnapping,” KMSP said.
“It’s not unique to Amanda," Mitchell added. "In fact, it’s the norm. I have another mother who is going through the same situation right now."
For Weber, the hellish process included at least six hearings in front of a judge, KMSP said, and she repeatedly was told "no, you are not a fit parent due to medical neglect."
“Two pieces of information from two hospitals — Children’s Hospital and St. Cloud Medical Center — that said her son was OK," Mitchell told KMSP, adding that authorities still filed to remove Zayvion from his mother.
“I wasn’t innocent until proven guilty," Weber added. "I was guilty until proven innocent."
The truth comes out
Morrison County judge Leonard Weiler said a nurse who cared for Zayvion at a St. Cloud clinic was notified about Weber bringing her son home from the hospital, MPR reported, and then that nurse provided "disinformation" about the boy's condition to a CPS worker who then filed the petition that led to the emergency intervention and Zayvion's removal.
Weiler also wrote that the petition included a false claim from the nurse that Zayvion stood the "very real risk of dying" if Weber didn't continue to administer medication and keep him on an apnea monitor, the outlet added.
What did the state have to say?
"It is always a hard situation when courts or county social workers remove children from their parents’ custody," Minnesota Human Services Commissioner Emily Piper told KMSP. "These very difficult decisions are not made lightly, and are always made in the best interest of the children involved. If families don’t cooperate, it is even more difficult."
Reunited — but not without trauma and loss
Mother and son finally were reunited early this month — but it turns out other things were taken from Weber that she can't get back.
“I look at the foster mom and say, ‘He’s walking now?’" Weber recalled to KMSP. "She’s like ‘yeah,’ and it was so devastating ... I don’t even know when his first steps were."
Weber also said Zayvion was traumatized by the experience. "He screamed when he was taken from me," she told MPR. "He screams like that now, when I even leave the room."
Mitchell told KMSP that CPS' present system is "antiquated" and "needs to be abolished. The disparity in the system needs to be eliminated."
Weber — who has since moved to Wisconsin amid the incident — is all too happy to help. “I’m frustrated, I’m angry and I’m on a mission to help bring about change," she said.
Original Article: https://www.theblaze.com/news/2018/09/28/legal-kidnapping-cps-took-infant-from-mother-for-four-months-judge-rules-disinformation-used