July 9, 2019
Kaufman County CPS was in court on July 2 defending their illegal removal of the Pardo family’s young child on June 20. THSC staff and about a hundred homeschoolers, friends and family members were in attendance in support of the family.
This case raises numerous questions about judges in Kaufman County.
Did Judge Gray, who signed the emergency order to remove the child, know that the family had a lawyer who was in touch with CPS but not present at or notified of the initial hearing? Did she know that CPS failed to notify the family of a June 10 meeting that was then used as a justification for the taking?
Did CPS inform Judge Gray that they had refused to tell the family or their legal counsel for two weeks what the allegations were, in spite of being required by law to do so? Did CPS explain to Judge Gray that the doctor whose testimony they were relying on did not believe an emergency existed?
Judge Gray had been a judge at the time for barely six months. It is possible that she was misled by CPS, but we will never know because neither the family nor their attorney were notified, present or represented.
Judge Chitty, who presided at the 14-day hearing, is by all accounts an experienced judge. Did he recognize, as did others in the courtroom, that CPS did not meet multiple legal requirements for removing the child? Why then did he rule that CPS could retain custody when there was absolutely no evidence presented to justify doing so?
Based on feedback from those observing the proceedings in court that day, virtually no one believes this decision was justified. Sen. Bob Hall called the hearing “the most egregious display of injustice” he had ever seen and stated that CPS had “zero evidence” against the family.
Finally, why did the court issue a gag order? The court-appointed lawyer representing the child asked for the order to prevent public discussion of the case. She said it was to protect the child. Of course that begs the question: who will protect him from being kept from his parents when there was no evidence to warrant taking him in the first place?
The gag order is intended to squelch the public discussion about this case and limit the exposure of the obvious injustice perpetrated against this child and his family by the state of Texas.
So why is the family still separated from their child? Are Texas judges just afraid to reprimand CPS? It certainly seems that way. These are questions that need to be addressed.
THSC believes that the best place for children is in a home with a loving family. Due process must be followed to protect innocent children and families from being torn apart unnecessarily.