2/17/10 – Court upholds seizure of children from Alamo compound

Arkansas News
February 17, 2010
Arkansas News Bureau

Court upholds seizure of children from Alamo compound

The state Court of Appeals today rejected appeals filed by five members of the Tony Alamo Christian Ministries over the state’s seizure of their children, ruling that the parents were raising an issue they did not raise at trial.

The parents, Alphonso Reid, Greg Seago, Brian Broderick and Richard and Debra Ondrisek, wanted the appeals court to overturn a Miller County circuit judge’s ruling that gave the state Department of Human Services custody of their minor sons after the boys were removed from the ministries’ compound in Fouke.

The parents argued that during a bench trial the judge improperly granted the state Department of Human Services’ motion for a directed verdict at the close of DHS’ case, without giving the parents a chance to present their case.

The judge based his ruling on the fact that a full hearing had already been held regarding the boy’s female siblings, and custody of the girls had been awarded to DHS.

In its opinion today, the Court of Appeals said the circuit judge did err by granting the motion for a directed verdict before the parents could present their case. However, the court said the issue was not raised at trial, and it will not consider an issue raised for the first time on appeal.

In: 2010

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