I haven’t contributed to the blog discussion on the West Texas Polygamy raids because I know very little that is not on CNN. However, I have dealt with CPS in Kaufman County and in East Texas. It’s that experience I’d like to share.
I am not sure if this experience is reflective of all CPS cases in Kaufman. However, I was taken aback by the process.
A little background. I had a contested hearing on a removal by Kaufman CPS. CPS came in, stole the child, and wanted my client to sign off on the removal without a contested hearing. Right.
For starters the CPS attorney referred to me as a National Socialist German Workers Party member in front of the judge, who didn’t flinch. I’ve been in some pretty heated hearing but I’ve never had a lawyer, in front a judge, call me a Nazi.
My “Nazi” actions were to have a contested hearing challenging a CPS removal and then actually filing discovery (which was disallowed). I couldn’t believe that CPS could take children from their parents and the parents could be denied the ability to learn anything about the removal through discovery. If Visa wanted to sue you for a past due balalnce, you could file discovery and learn about the case, if CPS wants to steal your children in Kaufman county, not so much.
The hearing featured a constant running dialogue/objection from the CPS attorney. I have never had opposing counsel simply talk the entire time during my questioning. It was surreal.
Kaufman CPS started with a conclusion (the parents are bad and must be rehabilitated) and then ignored all evidence to the contrary. If parents want their children back they must enter “the program” of CPS supervision and classes.
I will not be surprised if the polygamy raids fall apart for lack of evidence. I expect CPS and law enforcement to hold these children hostage until the parents “cooperate” to get their children back. There are serious problems with child abuse in Texas. However, our government needs to be held accountable for taking children away from parents.