Baby Veronica case reaches "finality" as court rejects birth father, tribe's appeals

Charleston County Family Court to determine transition plan

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  • File Illustration by Doris Howard

In an order handed down in the Baby Veronica case today, the South Carolina Supreme Court rejected petitions for rehearing from the child's birth father and the Cherokee Nation, drawing to a close a years-long court battle over the custody of three-year old Veronica.

Reinforcing the court's order last week for Charleston County Family Court to expedite the adoption of Veronica, the justices, split 3-2 as they were last week, praised James Island adoptive parents Matt and Melanie Capobianco for their "commendable" consideration of the child's best interests over the course of the case:

The Adoptive Couple has throughout this litigation confirmed their intent to rear Baby Girl in a manner that maintains a meaningful connectedness to her Native American heritage. Consistent with their commitment to serve BAby Girl's best interests, and in recognition that the return of Baby Girl to them must be accomplished with her best interest as the controlling consideration, the Adoptive Couple has commendably proposed a thoughtful transition plan.

The court goes on to further stress that the most recent orders from the state and federal level "leave nothing further to be decided by the family court," leaving the logistics of "the matter of transfer" to the Charleston County Family Court to be carried out "in accordance with Baby Girl's best interest."

"This case has reached its finality," the court concludes, "That finality should be honored."

The Capobiancos were not available for comment at the time of publication.

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