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Woman takes girl after visitation, facing abduction charge

A Florida woman who allegedly kidnapped her child in May is facing federal criminal charges in connection with the incident. The 22-year-old woman apparently absconded with the 2-year-old girl in order to avoid vaccinating the youngster. The abduction reportedly occurred after the girl's father had dropped her off with her mother for a court-ordered visitation. The woman is accused of transporting her child across state lines in an effort to avoid prosecution in Florida.

Official reports show that the woman left a note for her current boyfriend, explaining that she could not allow the girl to be vaccinated or be "brainwashed." The mother and father had just been through a custody battle that had apparently concluded in April. Both parents had been given 50 percent physical custody of the girl; they exchanged time with the child every other week. When the girl was not returned on time, authorities were dispatched to the woman's home. There, they found her current boyfriend, who told police that the woman and child had left for good.

It is telling that the defendant's mother has told media outlets that the child should be handed over to her father. The maternal grandmother says that the girl would be "better off" with her dad, saying that the mother is not emotionally prepared to raise her own child. It is not clear why the mother was so vehemently opposed to vaccinating her child.

Physical custody arrangements can be difficult to negotiate. In this case, each parent was given equal time with the child, but it is clear that the woman abused that privilege. Now, she could face prison time in addition to the loss of child custody. Instead of taking such rash action, the woman could have used the family court system to address potential concerns she had about vaccination and other child-rearing issues.

Source: Sun Sentinel, "Sunrise mom accused of kidnapping girl to avoid vaccination, preschool" Rafael Olmeda, Jun. 13, 2014

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