Avoiding criminal charges in California child custody disputes

Virtually no arena of American law encompasses more emotion and contention than child custody cases. This type of litigation can bring the most nasty, expensive and lengthy cases before California family courts. For those involved in child custody litigation, it is imperative that emotions are kept in check to the greatest degree possible.

This is understandable given the fact that child custody disputes center on differences of opinion regarding the care and safety of a child. It is human nature to experience protective impulses when we believe that a child we love has been mistreated. However, letting emotions overrun reason can only serve to harm one's interests in court.

Such is the case in recent news coverage of the arrest of a police officer who stepped into a child custody dispute between his son and the mother of his grandchild. The man claims that his 2-year-old grandson was abandoned to his family's care. When police arrived to retrieve the boy under authority of a court order, the grandfather allegedly acted to hide the child. He was subsequently arrested for interference with a police officer as well as custodial interference.

While the full details of this case will not be made public until after multiple hearings have been conducted, the story does serve as a warning to all family members involved in a contentious child custody battle. When acting to protect a child, it is imperative that one's choices reflect an understanding of and compliance with California law. Acting outside of that authority can lead to criminal charges and disruption to the existing child custody case.

Source: ctpost.com, "Cop in custody battle surrenders," Daniel Tepfer, March 26, 2013

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