She lied to him about her plans to relinquish their third child and lied on legal papers that she did not know who the baby's father was while arranging a private adoption.
There were charges of domestic violence and Benjamin spent some time in jail but was free in time to get to the hospital just moments before his daughter left with a prospective single adoptive mother who was immediately told of his entry into the picture.
Stacey Doss took custody of baby Vanessa straight from the hospital. When she heard of Benjamin's interest with days, she welcomed into the open adoption arrangement and claims to have sent him an airline ticket to visit.
Two years have gone by, however. Vanessa has remained with Doss - though the adoption has never been finalized - while her father passed a DNA test and fights for his constitutional right to his raise his daughter.
Interestingly, I was made aware of this case via n email seeking my help for the prospective adopter who is waging a media war with websites seeking support. Interestingly, the mass email for support called Doss Vanessa's "adoptive mother" and never mentioned that the adoption was never finalized. it also never mentioned that Doss new about the father's interest since the baby was days old. It was filled with unsubstantiated allegations about him which may or may not be true. However, Vanessa's mother never pressed charges against him.
Story and video here.
My reply to their plea for help:
Thank you. I WILL be following and blogging about this case.
This adoption has not been finalized.
The mother of the child never pressed charges of domestic violence against the baby's father.
Only she and he know if he is or is not guilty, but he WANTS to raise HIS child and unless he is proven unfit and a potential danger to his child, it is his constitutional right to do so, regardless of his being demonized.
I pray that the parties involved can reach a solution that includes visitation - regardless of who "wins" in the end - so that the child experiences the least amount of harm, and I pray they do so as quickly as possible. All too often contested adoptions like this are dragged on at the advise of the attorney for the POTENTIAL/PROSPECTIVE adopters so that judges will find in their favor even if the adoption was done illegally. They know the longer is with them, the better their chances of a decision to let her stay there. I hope and pray this is not done because all too often it merely causes a far more traumatic separation at a later date when the child is older.
See the case of DeMartino/
Do what is best for the child even if its hard to let go. We expect birth mothers to do that. Why would we expect less of a non-related foster mother? I was a foster mother and I know how hard it is to let go, especially when there are allegations of of abuse. But it the right thing to do, albeit painful and difficult.
Perhaps there is a biological grandparent who could foster grandparent who could care for Vanessa while the case is heard, or even permanently. I pray the court looks into that as well.