Matt Capobianco says he will go to Oklahoma to get his adopted child Veronica if federal law enforcement won’t step in to help them.
They want the FBI to step in to resolve a dispute that has now lasted years.
The Cherokee child’s birth father, Dusten Brown, has not complied with a court order to give the three-year-old to her adoptive parents, Matt and Melanie Capobianco of James Island. The birth mother, Christine Maldonado selected them for adoption before Veronica was born.
According to the Cherokee Nation out of Oklahoma, Brown turned himself in to authorities for missing a court hearing in South Carolina, but he is now out on bond. He refused to be sent to South Carolina.
Veronica has been in Oklahoma since 2011, when the SC Supreme Court agreed that Brown had rights under the Indian Child Welfare Act. The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled the law does not apply in this case because he had not established himself as a parent and ordered the state courts to handle the adoption. The high court then denied Brown’s further requests for a hearing.
Citing the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), American Indian tribal interests stepped in on the side of the father. State courts denied their requests for another hearing to decide the best interests of the child. They have filed a federal civil rights suit.
In the meantime, state family court finalized the adoption, but Brown did not return the child. A warrant was issued for his arrest.
The Capobiancos and their attorneys say they are frustrated and confused about why Brown has not been forced to comply.
AUDIO: Melanie Capobianco says Brown has been using their kindness against them (1:28)
South Carolina Radio Network is awaiting comment from the FBI in South Carolina.