Outrageous 3 Kids Sent to Juvenile Detention for Refusing to See Their Dad?!
UPDATE: A suburban Detroit judge has released three siblings who spent two weeks in juvenile detention for refusing to meet with their estranged father, AP reports.
Oakland County Judge Lisa Gorcyca is sending the children to summer camp instead. She held a hearing Friday, days after her decision made national headlines.
(Original story below)
A Michigan woman claims a judge sent her three children to juvenile detention for refusing to have lunch with their father, a dramatic twist in a long and bitter custody dispute.
Judge Lisa Gorcyca ordered the Tsimhoni siblings – aged 9, 10 and 14 – to have a healthy relationship with their father as part of a joint custody agreement.
The children’s divorced parents, Omer and Maya Tsimhoni, have been battling over custody since 2009.
The kids claimed that their father was abusive to their mother, but the judge said that the children have been brainwashed by their mom. Gorcyca even compared the children to Charles Manson and his cult.
Gorcyca held the children in contempt when they refused visits with their father, then sent them off to juvenile detention, where they could stay until they turn 18.
Maya Tsimhoni said that she felt like she was watching her children’s execution throughout the ordeal. She insisted that her children should not be punished.
However, a lawyer for Omer Tsimhoni said that the mother is exploiting the children.
Omer Tsimhoni echoed that sentiment in an interview with the New York Observer after the ruling started to make national headlines, insisting that he has always paid child support and would "do anything" to mend the relationship with his kids.
Reached by telephone for an interview arranged by 5WPR, the firm Mr. Tsimhoni hired to help him navigate the crisis, Mr. Tsimhoni spoke to the Observer at length. “I’m in shock by what’s happening. My ex-wife lost in court after many times she was warned and as a result she just went out to the media to put pressure on the judge or overrule the judge. I understand everybody’s pain—the children’s pain, my pain, that the children are where they are. But she saw it coming and never tried to prevent it.
The judge (pictured below) did not comment on the case, which will be reviewed in September.
On "Happening Now," Jon Scott went over the unusual case with former federal prosecutor Fred Tecce and former federal attorney Emily Compagno.
Compagno said a judge's job is not to further "rip a family apart" and punish children, adding that Gorcyca should have dealt with it in another way.
Tecce called it a "horrible situation," but noted that having lunch with Mr. Tsimhoni was a direct order by the judge that was refused.
"We don't let the inmates run the asylum. I'm sorry, they were told what to do and they disregarded it," he argued.
Watch their analysis above.