DETROIT (WWJ) – A controversial custody case in Detroit has concluded in favor of the child’s mother.
A Wayne County family court judge has ordered that 13-year-old Ariana Godboldo Haakim be returned to her mother, Maryanne Godboldo. The court also would not order that the girl be administered psychotropic drugs, saying that was a decision her parents could make.
A gallery packed with supporters broke out in applause as the Wayne County Family Court Judge Lynn Pierce issued the order on Thursday.
There were no objections to Arianna’s return home, since reports said she’s been thriving in the care of her aunt. However, officials with the Department of Human Services want Arianna’s parents ordered to be more cooperative in providing information on Arianna’s care.
Outside the courthouse Thursday, Godboldo was clearly relieved.
“I feel wonderful, of course, because my daughter has been legally, on paper, given back to me … which, in my mind, she’s never been taken away,” Godboldo said.
But does she feel vindicated?
“No, I don’t. Not at all. The damage was done to my daughter,” Godboldo said.
The judge ruled that the state will terminate its jurisdiction in this case as soon as an education and treatment plan are in place. Godboldo said she’s already completed those things.
Godboldo had been charged with discharge of a weapon and three counts of felonious assault, among other charges, stemming from a 12-hour standoff with police in March. Godboldo said police did not produce a warrant when they came to remove her daughter, testifying that Child Protective Services sent officers to the house because she had taken the girl off a drug that was doing more harm than good.
The case against her has brought national attention, but 36th District Court Judge Ronald Giles dismissed all criminal charges against Godboldo late last month.
Godboldo said she is grateful the judge has ruled in her favor, but she said this kind of thing has not happened only to her.
“My case is a little different, but only because of the attention that it had received,” she said. “If it had not received this attention from the media and the community, I shutter to think what would have happened to my daughter and me.”