Virginia: The Baby-Stealing State

What would you do if the government forcibly took your 3-week-old baby from you based on an anonymous (and false) charge that you were neglecting the baby?

And, nine months later, when the government finally agreed with you, what would you do if a judge denied the return of your baby to you, saying that she had already bonded with her inexperienced but politically-influential foster parents?

That’s the unimaginable situation faced, not by a poverty-stricken family in some third-world dictatorship, but in the state of Virginia – in the United States of America.

There’s an empty highchair sitting in the kitchen of the Arlington home of Nancy Hey and Christopher Slitor. It’s their daughter Sabrina’s highchair. But it’s been empty for two years because thieves disguised as Arlington County social workers and judges took her from her parents. She was stolen with no public scrutiny or accountability. Arlington County social workers used unproven allegations of neglect in April 2005 to justify removing then-3-week-old Sabrina from her parent’s home.

Judge Almand later used the baby’s inappropriate removal to justify making the separation permanent, saying it would be too “traumatic” to return Sabrina to her natural parents. Even after spending $350,000 in legal fees, they have not given up hope. They’ve asked the Virginia Court of Appeals to return their child.

By George Donnelly

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