Baby Veronica's birth father releases statement about South Carolina ruling

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Updated: 7/18/2013 2:33 pm Published: 7/17/2013 3:50 pm

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's highest court has ruled that an Indian child who's at the center of a custody suit that went to the U.S. Supreme Court should be returned to the Charleston-area couple seeking to adopt her.

The state Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled 3-2 that Matt and Melanie Capobianco are the only party properly seeking to adopt the girl in South Carolina and ordered a Family Court to finalize the couple's adoption.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last month that South Carolina courts should decide who gets to adopt the 3-year-old named Veronica. South Carolina courts originally said the federal Indian Child Welfare Act favored her living with her father and Dusten Brown took custody in 2011.

Earlier this month, the girl's biological father filed to adopt the child in Oklahoma.

The Cherokee Nation released the following statement about the court's ruling:

We are outraged and saddened that the South Carolina Supreme Court would order the transfer of this child without a hearing to determine what is in her best interests, particularly in light of the fact that this very same court previously found “we cannot say that Baby Girl's best interests are not served by the grant of custody to Father, as Appellants have not presented evidence that Baby Girl would not be safe, loved, and cared for if raised by Father and his family.”

Dusten Brown is a fit, loving parent and Veronica is, as the court previously defined, “safe, loved, and cared for." That should be enough.

The Capobianco family released this statement: 

“We are thrilled that after 18 long months, our daughter finally will be coming home. We look forward to seeing Veronica’s smiling face in the coming days and will do everything in our power to make her homecoming as smooth as possible. We also want to thank everyone who has supported us throughout this ordeal. Our prayers have been answered.”

Statement from Veronica's birth mother:

"I am just over the moon by this news. All I’ve ever wanted was to give Veronica a life with Matt and Melanie, a life I could not provide for her. It has torn at my heart every day that she has been apart from them, and I have missed being a part of their life over the past 18 months. I am anxious to see her again as soon as possible after she settles in back home in South Carolina.”

Dusten Brown released this statement:

We are outraged that the South Carolina Supreme Court would order the adoption of our child finalized without a proper hearing to determine what is in Veronica’s best interests. This child has been back with her family for 19 months and to tear her away from us, the family she loves and the only family she knows or remembers, would be devastating to her. This is an Oklahoma child and her placement should not be considered by a court in South Carolina. We have contacted our U.S. Senator and encourage each of you to do the same, in order to help us keep Veronica in her home, which is a safe, loving and nurturing environment. We will never give up the fight to raise our daughter.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Nerflight - 7/23/2013 10:10 AM
0 Votes
we petition the obama administration to: Honor the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 and give "Baby Veronica" (A Cherokee tribal citizen) back to her tribe. Dusten Brown a Iraq Veteran and member of the Federally recognized Cherokee nation (which suffered at Trail of tears) had his daughter taken from him by the state of South Carolina after the child's tribe gave Dustin's family joint custody. The state of S.C is refusing to honor the Federal law which covers inter state matters which is covered in the United states' constitution. Google "Baby Veronica" and then sign this petition to make the State of South Carolina HONOR the treaties and Federal laws put in place to protect those that suffered on the Trail of Tears. Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 (ICWA) Federal law that governs jurisdiction over the removal of Native American (Indian) children from their families.

num pah she - 7/20/2013 8:37 AM
0 Votes
*might affect NDN people.

num pah she - 7/20/2013 8:32 AM
0 Votes
happy for that child. mother has an open adoption and has received no money for her child from that adoptive family. NDN people have been fed a pack of pr lies by cherokee nation attorneys and the browns. that whiteboy tried to use his nosebleed cherokee status and lost. he was deployed because of a plea bargain involving drug was army or prison. prior to this case the browns had no real affiliation with the cn beyond cdib's used to utilize ihs. NDN people were played for suckers. the browns are a disgrace. a disrespect to the children icwa was intended for. a shameful reminder of how whites become NDN when it is convenient. they didn't care how the outcome might effect NDN people. they didn't care about you, your children or your grandchildren. the cherokee nation's motives are suspect as well. let that little girl go home.

meagan - 7/19/2013 9:56 AM
0 Votes
I am so glad to hear that she will be going back to her family in south Carolina. She should have never been taken from them. If her biological father wasn't around when the mother was pregnant I don't think its right for him to be able to take care of her now. Everyone has their own opinion and this is mine. Its really the mothers decision. She is the one that carried that child for 9 months and she decided what would be the best life for that little girl. And just because the mother gave up her child doesn't mean she cant ever see her. Its what you call an open adoption!

hii3oobein - 7/18/2013 10:09 AM
1 Vote
red hot special!!!...get your indian babies here!! only $10,000 dollars, hurry hurry hurry federal law to prevent the theft of indian children from their tribe does not apply!!! step right up and order your ow genuine indian baby!! you can lie, mislead, purposely misspell on applications, keep the indian father our of the loop, prevent contact and then spring it on him before he goes to a war ton country while serving his country step right up folks...ten grand for indian baby is a deal!!!

UsernameJC - 7/17/2013 8:06 PM
2 Votes
What the heck?! She's missed "being a part of their lives"? And she can't wait to see the baby? I thought she gave her up? Why is she still in the picture? What type of deal is happening between her and the pre_adoptive couple? It feels sick that an actual biological father wants his kid and the pre-adoptive couple are fighting him. Twisted. BTW ICWA has nothing to do with race or ethnicity and everything to do with political government. Our Nations are sovereign and the relationship between the USA and any of our "tribal" Nations is government to government. This couple tried to get around federal laws protecting Native children and succeeded.

rmp729 - 7/17/2013 5:03 PM
1 Vote

James - 7/17/2013 4:17 PM
0 Votes
It's about time they see past race and culture and see the best interest of the child and uphold a mothers wish.
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