After going through a divorce, each parent will need to adhere to a child custody order approved by the family law court. The custody order will say which parent can raise and live with their children and during what times. If one parent has no custody rights, then they may only be able to see their child during set visitation hours.
Trouble can quickly arise during the holiday season in regards to following and respecting child custody orders. Both parents will undoubtedly want to spend a nice holiday morning with their children, but only one will probably be able to do so. This significant conflict of interests may lead one parent to decide to go on a holiday trip or just spend the morning with their child outside of the approved custody plan. This could be seen as domestic kidnapping, a serious form of domestic violence.
Reacting to Accusations of Domestic Kidnapping
If you are accused of domestic child snatching, you have to take the accusations seriously. You could completely lose what child custody rights you have now, as well as be fined up to $10,000 and incarcerated for up to 24 months. If you have other marks on your criminal record, especially some pertaining to domestic violence, it is possible that your penalties could be worsened.
Ideally, you will be able to quickly explain to your ex-spouse that you did not intend to kidnap your child and they will drop the accusations. However, you should prepare for them to press charges. By contacting The Law Office of Thomas C. Thomasian, Esq. and talking to our Rhode Island criminal defense attorneys, you can start constructing a sturdy defense that relies on strong evidence to shield you from criminal penalties. We will want to consider if you could have made the honest mistake of misreading a custody order, if you were trying to protect your child from harm carried out by the other parent, or if you made every reasonable attempt to return your child to your ex-spouse in a timely manner.
Call (401) 312-4385 to schedule a free initial consultation with our team.