U.S. Navy Sailor Matthew Hindes is fighting a battle close to home: maintaining custody of his daughter, Kaylee.
Hindes has been ordered by Circuit Court Judge Margaret Noe to appear in court on Monday. Sounds like a plan. The problem? Hindes is currently stationed on a submarine deployed in the Pacific Ocean.
Since 2010, the sailor has had full custody of his little girl. He earned full parental rights when his ex-wife lost custody – when Child Protective Services removed their daughter from her home.
During his deployment, his little girl is being cared for by his current wife, Benita-Lynn – her step-mom.
In most cases, Hindes would be protected by the Service Members Civil Relief Act which provides safeguards for active duty military members in civil judicial proceedings.
But Judge Noe doesn’t agree and has said, “If the child is not in the care and custody of the father, the child should be in the care and custody of the mother.”
To make this frustrating situation even worse, a warrant has been issued by Noe for Hindes’ arrest.
“He’s protecting the rights of others,” said Benita-Lynn, “But who is protecting his rights? … I’m just trying my best to keep everything together. It’s just hard.”
Although Sailor Hindes’ command sent a letter saying he cannot be at the hearing, there appears to be no leeway. Since he is not allowed to appear by skype or by phone, the odds are not looking very promising.
Many are routing for the Hindes family and hope that Judge Noe realizes how unreasonable her actions truly are.
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom