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In the unedited video above, the entire incident of Child Protective Services and the Sacramento Police using force to take away Anna and Alex Nikolayev’s baby is recorded. Anna and Alex had received poor care for their baby at a local hospital, and when the hospital wanted to do heart surgery on their infant, they wanted a second opinion and took the baby to a different hospital.

The first hospital did not approve of this, and did not discharge the child. Therefore, they called Child Protection Services. The parents, meanwhile, had taken the baby to a second hospital, where the child was discharged that night by a physician, since there was no immediate danger, and the surgery was not imminent.

But, the next day, Child Protection Services and the Sacramento Police showed up at the parents home to take away their baby. The husband was outside at the time, and he was forced to the ground so that the police could enter the home by force. The mother, seeing what was happening outside, set up the camera to record the whole incident (see video above.) The social workers would not even tell the mother where they were taking the baby. The police took the baby out of the mother’s arms by force, and only after the social workers had already left with the baby did they allow the mother to show the hospital documents showing that their baby was properly discharged by a physician from the second hospital. The police did not seem to care what the facts were at all, and gave full authority to CPS to remove the child. (Full story here.)

Senior Consul of Russia, Vycheslav Uvarov, in San Francisco in the court in Sacramento, with Honorary Consul of Russia, Natalia Owen. Photo by Alexander Klimov – posted on Facebook.

Since the father is a Russian national, this incident caused an international uproar. Russia accused the United States of abusing the couple’s human rights. Diplomats were sent to attend the hearing in Sacramento. (Full story here.)

One of the attorneys representing the parents explained that these actions by the CPS are not uncommon, and that the child is almost never returned to the parents at the first hearing:

In this shocking interview above, the attorney explains how CPS works in abducting children from families. He has 21 years experience in litigating against CPS.

Quotes:

“A young, cute, little baby is about the most marketable commodity that exists.”

“The chances they will get their baby back today are (slim). In my 21 years of experience, between me and my colleagues, we have seen maybe 3 cases where the child was returned the first day. Now think about that, can they really be right that much of the time?”

Fortunately, the child was ordered to be transported to the care of a hospital that the parents chose (CPS was holding him in the original hospital), and his custody was returned to the parents. One has to wonder if the same result would have occurred, had not one of the parents been a Russian national and had the help of political pressure put on the situation.

Since the case received so much media coverage, California Assembly member Tim Donnelly became concerned about the abuse of power exhibited by the CPS and called for a state audit (see video above.) Last week (June 5, 2013) the full State Assembly approved an audit of CPS in California. The Sacramento Bee reports:

State Auditor Elaine Howle said she will review the policies and procedures CPS agencies use to determine when to remove a child from a home. The panel asked Howle to select three counties to audit. She said she will consider factors such as the number of abuse complaints and other factors that indicate potential problems within a county’s child welfare agency.

She said she used similar criteria to select counties for an audit of CPS agencies two years ago, ultimately focusing on those in Sacramento, Los Angeles, Alameda and Fresno counties. That audit focused on placement of abused and neglected children in foster homes, while the upcoming one will focus on investigations of abuse and neglect, she said.

Sacramento County has been the subject of complaints from both ends of the child welfare spectrum. Over the years, dozens of children have died after the agency handled reports they had been subject to prior abuse and neglect.

At the same time, the Sacramento agency has had one of the state’s highest rates of removing children from homes.Sacramento County had the biggest contingent of people who addressed the committee on Wednesday. They spoke about children who they believe were wrongly removed or who were left in harm’s way.

The testimony of Sacramento County resident Anna Nikolayev seemed to upset legislators the most. Law enforcement officials took her baby boy, Sammy, from her home after she and her husband removed the boy from a Sutter hospital where a doctor had recommended heart surgery.”You can’t break into my house and take my child,” she said, crying. “They ripped my child out of my arms.”

In a written statement, CPS spokeswoman Laura McCasland said the agency could not speak directly about the case. But, she said, the law requires the agency to take action when a child’s health is at risk. Social workers rely heavily on the advice of medical professionals in determining whether to remove a child from parental custody in such circumstances, she added. (Full story here.)

A large rally was held at the State Capital the day of the hearings. One of the speakers at the rally was Deanna Fogerty. Deanna had her daughters taken from her wrongfully for six entire years. She lost six years with her precious daughters and ended up suing Orange County, and her case went all the way to the Supreme Court, because Orange County kept appealing. She eventually won $10 million and to this day the social worker that “destroyed her life” still works for CPS and reportedly just got a promotion. Here is her speech:

Deanna Fogerty’s attorney, Shawn McMillan, won the 2011 “Street Fighter of the Year Award” for taking on the CPS and prevailing all the way to the Supreme Court to defeat them:

Anna and Alex Nikolayev hope that all the media attention their case has received will help draw attention to what they, and others, see as the tremendous abuse of power with the CPS, and the legal kidnapping of children who are then placed in foster homes in order to receive state funding. Others have already come forward to share their stories, and there is an active Facebook Page following their case here.

See Also: Child Abuse Laws: Legally Abducting Children by Broadening the Definition of “Child Abuse”

by Attorney Jonathan Emord
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