Modemac at The High Weirdness Project reports that after a year involving court battles, isolation from her child, the original judge recusing himself, and stalling tactics by the child’s father, Rachel “Reverend Magdalen” Bevilacqua has regained custody of her son.
“Just wanted to give you a heads up that the custody decision will be in my hand Monday! [01/08/07] My lawyer has it right now, and he called to tell me that I won and I get to pick my son up Monday! I can’t believe it!! Thank you all sooooo much for all your help and everything and I’ll write more when I can!”
Rachel Bevilacqua with son Kohl
Thus ends a custody case that seemed to expose just how biased and flimsy our justice system can be at times. To briefly recap: Rachel “Rev. Magdalen” Bevilacqua was barred from all contact with her son after photos of her at an adults-only Subgenius event were submitted by her son’s father as proof that she was an unfit parent. The original judge called Bevilacqua “perverted” and “mentally ill” before stepping down under a growing scrutiny of his actions. She then spent several more months fighting in court to regain custody of her son racking up huge legal fees in the process.
The case made my top ten stories of 2006, and remains a chilling example of how belonging to the “wrong” religion (even a satirical postmodern religion) can ruin your life and tear your family apart. I’m sure Bevilacqua is still looking for donations to her legal fund, information about donating to help pay her legal bills can be found, here. Congratulations to Rev. Magdalen, I wish you and your family the best.
ADDENDUM: Modemac writes with breaking news, it seems the father has (illegally) grabbed his son from school and is hoping that a last-minute appeal goes his way.
“[My son] and Jeff were missing until this morning, when Jeff returned [my son] to school. It was the most frightening night of my life. The reason Jeff did all this is that there is a Stay hearing today… Basically, Jeff has asked an Appeals Court judge to stay the order of Judge Adams, and they are going to decide on that this afternoon. For some reason, Jeff thought that this Stay hearing gave him the right to do what he did, or so he claims. He is wrong, of course, but he still got away with it. The police looked for them all evening and didn’t find them. The Stay hearing starts at 3 PM and I’m fighting to have [my son] with me at that time, because I’m afraid that if the stay is denied, Jeff may take off with [my son] again just like last night.”
Further updates as I get them.
12.30.2006 Religious News 2006 (Part 2)
3.28.2006 Judge Recused in Subgenius Custody Case
3.16.2006 SubGenius Mother Silenced by Activist Judge
2.25.2006 Update on SubGenius Custody Case
2.21.2006 It Is Happening Again