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Brown bonds out as OK Supreme Court gathers adoption papers - abc27 WHTM

Brown bonds out as OK Supreme Court gathers adoption papers

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THURSDAY'S DEVELOPMENTS

  • Dusten Brown surrendered and was then released on bond;
  • The Capobiancos' attorney responded to accusation they tried to take Veronica during a recent meeting;
  • A pair of letters were filed with the Oklahoma Supreme Court from adoption experts;
  • The Oklahoma Supreme Court requested the finalized adoption paperwork. That was sent at 2:20 p.m. CST.

SALLISAW, Okla. (AP/WCIV) – The man wanted for keeping his biological nearly 4-year-old daughter away from her adoptive parents was released Thursday morning on bond shortly after he surrendered to authorities who had a warrant for his arrest.

It was the second time in as many months that Dusten Brown has been ushered through the Sequoyah County court system. On Thursday, just like last month, Brown moved quickly through processing and was released.

Now Brown's attorney, Clark Brewster, has brokered a new hearing to fight the extradition charge, set for Oct. 3.

But Thursday's quick trip had the sheriff calling the governor's office for advice, according to a Tulsa World report. The paper goes on to say that Gov. Mary Fallin's office advised the sheriff to allow Brown to leave after he posted bail.

A spokesman for Fallin told the Associated Press that the governor still believes the case should not go on indefinitely and that the two sides should find an agreement for Veronica, the focus of the years-long custody battle.

Fallin said she would wait until Brown's Sept. 12 hearing to act on the governor's warrant from South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, unless Brown did not act in good faith. On Wednesday, Fallin released a statement saying she was signing the warrant because Brown had stopped a free flow of contact between the Capobiancos and their adopted daughter.

Brewster said in a statement that there was concern among the Browns and the Cherokee Nation that the Capobiancos would try to take Veronica and run with her back to South Carolina.

SPECIAL SECTION: The Baby Veronica Story

Lori McGill, one of the Capobiancos' attorney who also represented Veronica's birth mother, Christinna Maldonado, released a statement through the family's spokeswoman on Thursday, attacking Brewster's claims.

"Mr. Brewster's conveniently-timed accusations are outrageous and false and he knows it. Unlike Mr. Brewster's client, Matt and Melanie Capobianco have consistently and immediately obeyed court orders in both South Carolina and Oklahoma," she said. "Desperate people do desperate things, and I expect more of the same from Mr. Brewster in the coming days. And given that Mr. Brown has miraculously been released on bond, yet again in the face of an executed Governor's warrant, I'd expect the state's lawyers will take a very hard look at what is going on here."

While Brown briefly faced extradition once again on Thursday, his proceedings have little bearing on where Veronica will end up.

The two sides are waiting for the Oklahoma Supreme Court to act after meeting with a court referee on Tuesday, which is where the rest of Thursday's legal maneuvering is taking place.

The court on Thursday afternoon received a certified copy of the final adoption decree filed in a South Carolina family court that makes the Capobiancos Veronica's legal parents – at least in South Carolina.

A supplemental filing was also given to the court in support of lifting the stay that's keeping Veronica in Brown's custody.

The court also received a pair of letters from adoption workers, filed by Dr. Linda J. Kats and Samantha Franklin. Kats is a therapist who works with families and individuals involved in adoptions. Franklin is Oklahoma's representative to the American Adoption Congress.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court became involved in the epic custody battle last week after Brown filed for a writ of prohibition in response to an Oklahoma court granting immediate custody to the Capobiancos.

For a short time last Friday, it appeared as though the Capobiancos would be returning home with their adopted daughter. But the consideration of Oklahoma's high court pushed that through the holiday weekend and into this week.

Brown and the Cherokee Nation have been battling South Carolina's order to hand Veronica over to the Capobiancos since the South Carolina Supreme Court directed a Charleston family court to finalize the adoption.

Brown gained custody of Veronica after the South Carolina Supreme Court ruled that he had a prevailing right to claim custody based on the Indian Child Welfare Act. She was removed from the Capobiancos' James Island home on Dec. 31, 2011.

Since then, she has been living in Oklahoma while her adoptive parents and birth mother fight to regain custody.

The U.S. Supreme Court in June ruled that Brown's ICWA-based argument was in error and ordered the lower court that had initially sided with him to reconsider their ruling without the consideration of the child protection law.

That's when the state Supreme Court decided that the Capobiancos should have custody of Veronica and urged family court to make final their adoption request.

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