Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Judge Kelsay screws up another case

I thought that Judge Kelsay retired years ago, but the bad effects of his child custody decisions are still being felt.

In one case on Monday, the mom's lawyer asked for an evaluation from Bret Johnson, a local gay psychologist who does child custody evaluations on the side. Both parents were represented by lawyers who claimed that their clients had no money to pay for the evaluation or the therapists. I think the kid was getting some sort of psychotherapy as well as the parents.

Judge Morse did not understand the case. At one point she asked a question, and the mom's lawyer explained that she had custody until Judge Kelsay abruptly put them on a 5-2-2-5 50-50 schedule from an ex parte motion. The mom was not present and did not have notice, and that is what screwed up the case. The dad's lawyer objected to this description, and said that two different judges agreed on the joint custody. The dad's lawyer countered that the second judge was Commissioner Joseph, and he explicity said in his order that he did not understand Judge Kelsay's order but was going to go along with it anyway.

The mom's lawyer was like the TV character Eddie Haskell, for those who are old enough to remember him. He was such a transparent suck-up that it was uncomfortable. The judge seemed to be eating it up, and was friendly to him. I wonder whether it is really effective to have a lawyer like that.

Meanwhile the dad had dreadlocks down to his waist. The mom and dad looked so strikingly dissimilar that I never would have guessed that they would have anything to do with each other. There has to be a story. If I were doing the evaluation, that would be my first question. In another era, the woman's family would have forbidden her to date a man with dreadlocks. Today, he will be at the mercy of a gay psychologist who has a completely different set of prejudices.

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