Fallin Receives South Carolina Governor's Extradition Request - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Fallin Receives South Carolina Governor's Extradition Request

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Both sides of the "Baby Veronica" custody fight remain active Tuesday as an extradition order was signed into effect by the South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.

Dusten Brown was charged over the weekend with custodial interference after failing to appear at a court-ordered meeting in South Carolina, where the adoptive parents live. He turned himself in to the Sequoyah County Sheriff's Department on Monday and was released after posting bond.

A representative for Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin stated her office received the South Carolina governor's request and will issue a statement Tuesday afternoon. Fallin has 90 days to review the extradition request.

Charleston County Sheriff Al Cannon said Monday he is also working with state and federal authorities to bring biological father Dusten Brown to South Carolina to face charges and return the 3-year-old Cherokee girl to her adoptive parents.

Cannon says he doesn't know Brown's whereabouts. Cherokee Nation spokeswoman Amanda Clinton said Veronica is in the care of her paternal grandparents and Brown's wife.

Veronica has been living with Brown since 2011, but courts have finalized her adoption by a Charleston-area couple.

Melanie and Matt Capobianco of James Island, S.C., have been trying to adopt Veronica since her birth in 2009; they raised the girl for two years. But Brown has had custody of his daughter since 2011, when South Carolina's Supreme Court ruled that the 1978 federal Indian Child Welfare Act, which favors a Native American child living with his or her extended family or other tribal members over non-Native Americans, gave custodial preference to Brown.

In June, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled the law does not apply in this case because the biological father never had custody of Veronica and abandoned her before birth.

Earlier Monday, the Capobiancos called on federal law enforcement to help them bring the child to South Carolina, saying they'll take the matter into their own hands if necessary.

"Send someone to the location our daughter is being held and work with us to bring her home. No more delays and no more excuses," Matt Capobianco said during a news conference in his James Island neighborhood. "Our daughter has been kidnapped, and I expect the situation to be treated as such."

Veronica's biological mother is not Native American. Brown had never met his daughter, but when he discovered that Veronica was going to be adopted, he objected and said the ICWA favored the girl living with him and growing up learning tribal traditions.

The Capobiancos appealed the South Carolina Supreme Court's 2011 decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, and it ruled South Carolina courts decide who gets to adopt Veronica. The state court said Capobiancos should raise the girl.

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