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At the Hillside Children's Center in NY, 55% of the foster children are prescribed one or more psychotropic drug.

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Tennessee Jails Father

by: Paul and Donna Mickles
Posted April 8, 2004

We are Paul and Donna Mickles from Rogersville, TN. The Court proceedings are being held in Knoxville, Tennessee under the Chancery Court Judge John Weaver.

Paul and I adopted a child four years ago and have raised him from three months old.

Third party relatives obtained visitation during our adoption and contempt charges were filed a number of times for missed visits.

The contempt charges were filed for bring the child on the wrong weekend or them canceling a visit and then taking out contempt charges.

Now my husband is in the Knox County Detention Center. Paul was sentenced to 10 days and before the 10 days were up he was sentenced to 50 more, and before those 50 days were up, he was slammed with 50 more and now they are continuing this. Mean while the Court wants me to agree to go to jail also and stay as long as they want me.

We are fit parents and all we are charged with is contempt of court. My husband has no bond set and no good time is allowed. The jails are over crowded.

I refused to agree to give my child up and go to jail with him. I am without income and face losing my home. This court has done more harm to my child and our family than we could do in a life time.

I have made offers to comply with the court order to get my husband out of jail, but they do not want to visit, they only make offers of more jail time.

The Court is trying us separately so we are in no position to comply. If I comply I go to jail and my husband is being held hostage in the Knox County jail. He has been in jail sence January 5, 2004.

I see no end to this and I have contacted everyone I can in the state of Tennessee, every one has turned their back on me, including the Governor and Senators.

We do not hold the keys to the jail in our case as civil contempt laws state. The court is calling our case just contempt. They do not make any difference between civil and criminal contempt. The newspapers and News stations will not print my story.

Our child is 8 years old and he just had a birthday and all that was on his list this year is that he want's his Dad back. He has begged the third party visitors to drop the charges and offered his piggy bank in exchange for his Dad.

Donna Mickles