"A 4th District Court judge says he is "astonished and deeply troubled" by a Utah adoption agency’s deliberate move to circumvent the rights of a married man whose daughter was adopted at birth without his knowledge.
The Provo judge, while noting the birth mother had deceived her husband, the adoption agency and the prospective parents, has given the adoptive couple 60 days to give the child back.
In a 48-page ruling, Judge Darold McDade said the Adoption Center of Choice’s policy of refusing to disclose any information to Terry Achane once he learned what had happened to his baby is "utterly indefensible."
US Army Drill Sergeant (Article mistakenly uses USMC title"Drill Instructor") has been through a Twilight Zone episode of of confusion and horror.
He and his wide had been going through marital troubles, but everything Terry Achane did seems to point to a man who cared for his family. He thought that they would have a period of separation with his pregnant wife and that they would be able to get back together.
While he was making house payments and settling in with a Drill Sergeant assignment in Fort Jackson, South Carolina (The military requires mobility), his wife gave birth to the baby, gave up parental rights, and the baby was then made available for adoption. Sgt Achane had no idea of where his wife had gone and had had trouble locating her.
"In June 2011, Bland [Achane's wife] for the first time informed her husband she had given birth in Utah and placed the child through the Adoption Center of Choice.
"I was like, ‘Utah? Where is Utah?’ I’d never been to Utah, she’s never been to Utah," he said. "Adoption? Who does that? ... I believe she felt guilty at that point because she just made a call out of the blue," said Achane.
That same day, Achane contacted the adoption agency and requested information about his child, which the agency refused to give him.
Instead, the Freis proceeded with the adoption. In their adoption petition, filed in July 2011, the couple acknowledged Achane was married to Bland when the child was conceived and born and that he had never consented to the adoption. They asked that his parental rights be terminated because he "abandoned the natural mother during her pregnancy" and "had not developed a substantial relationship" or otherwise taken responsibility for his daughter.Achane intervened in the case and in October, more than a year later, a two-day hearing finally took place.
During that hearing, a representative for the Adoption Center of Choice testified that it was "standard practice" to not provide any information when a father — married or not — of a prospective adoptive child called the agency. Kristi Freis told the court that although they knew Achane wanted his child, she and her husband felt they had no obligation to return the baby......................"
I feel so bad for this man. Going to a demanding job every day while fighting the unimaginable battle of getting his child back from people to whom the child should not have been given in the first place. The adoption agency and the couple who adopted the child while knowing that the father was never even given a chance to declare his desire to have custody should be sued.
I hope that someone does time in jail over this.