disability Archives | Cordell & Cordell

Court grants custody to woman despite her shady past

Linda Weston and her sister, Vicky, went to court for a child custody hearing to decide the fate of Vicky’s daughter, Beatrice. The troubled past of the two individuals didn’t factor into the judge’s decision, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Vicky was recovering from a head injury when the custody battle occurred, and had trusted her sister to take care of her child. Linda was convicted in 1984 of starving a man to death, a crime for which she served four years and something that her sister didn’t mind, the newspaper reported.

The granting of custody to the two women led to a bizarre kidnapping case in which Linda was arrested following police finding her with four mentally disabled adults locked in a basement.

Police then found Beatrice hiding, as she was malnourished and bore scars from burns, beatings and other torture.

The Inquirer reported that when Linda and Vicky went to court in 2003 to get custody of Beatrice, the previous murder conviction was not mentioned. This lack of investigation led to the horrific state in which the child was found.

CBS News reported that Linda was keeping the mentally disabled adults as part of a social security scheme, and her daughter was simply neglected.

Often times men are denied custody for merely having a minor offense on their record or because of unsubstantiated claims of abuse from their former spouse.

Custody Dispute Features Tammy Repaso

Cordell & Cordell attorney Tammy Repaso was featured in a St. Louis Post-Dispatch article as the lawyer for a father fighting for custody of his child with the child’s disabled mother.

The mother and father share joint custody, but Repaso’s client is seeking full custody. Unfortunately, the case is being painted that the father is going after full custody solely based on the mother’s disability.

However, Repaso told the newspaper, “We would never pursue custody based solely on disability or disease of a parent. Instead, these matters are based on the best interest of the child.”

Click the link to read the full story on the custody battle.

At Cordell & Cordell, we regard it as a basic truth that father-child relationship is as important as the mother-child relationship, and that gender-based discrimination in family court is unconscionable. Representing a father in a custody case is a challenging task requiring skill and experience.

In a system seemingly predisposed against them, men can only hope to succeed by using all the help available to them, both legally and strategically. Cordell & Cordell has built its practice on helping men do just that.

Tammy Repaso is a Litigation Manager in the St. Charles, Missouri, office of Cordell & Cordell, where she practices exclusively in the area of domestic relations. To schedule an appointment with her, please contact Cordell & Cordell.