In a happy ending to a story that ends badly all too often, a Florida girl was reunited with her mother after being missing for more than 4 years. According to a report published by CNN, Cara Cox was 8 years old when she was taken by her father during a scheduled visit per a court-imposed custody order in August of 2009. While her mother, Jodie Borchert, had full custody, her father had weekend visitation rights. Her father was supposed to drop Cara off at a daycare in Volusia County, Florida, but instead vanished with his daughter. While Cara’s mother continued to hold out hope, authorities had no leads and the case went cold for nearly 5 years.
Bochert continued to search for her child, even employing the wide reach of social media by creating a Facebook page titled “Have you Seen Cara Cox?” On that page she shared several photos of Cara and Cara’s father, including sharing an age-progressed photo of what Cara may look like today on Mother’s Day of this year. The following day, a tip came in to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children indicating that Cara and her father were residing in a remote area in Hidalgo, Mexico, about two hours outside of Mexico City. A few days later, U.S. authorities went to the residence and arrested Cara’s father and extradited him to Florida. He will be returned to Volusia County, where the initial abduction took place, and federal authorities are exploring whether any federal criminal actions could also be filed.
Florida Visitation Arrangements
Custody and visitation arrangements are a common facet of divorce proceedings when children are involved. In addition, non-married parents may also establish these types of arrangements through the family court system, provided that paternity is established. While in many cases these arrangements are honored and both parties comply with their terms, sometimes they are not, potentially resulting in serious consequences. Courts take into account the best interests of the child or children when deciding child custody issues, and also have the ability to modify their orders should circumstances change.
While the case of Cara Cox is an extreme example, these things can happen, and children and parents can both suffer as a result. The early intervention of an attorney in a child custody case can ensure that both parents’ interests are adequately represented, potentially avoiding an acrimonious situation at a later date. Additionally, these situations rarely occur spontaneously and without warning signs, and an attorney can help obtain a temporary modification or a restraining order, should the circumstances warrant it.
Contact a Ft. Lauderdale Family Law Attorney
Anyone with a child custody or other family law issue should discuss their situation with an experienced Boca Raton family law attorney as soon as possible. With over 30 years of experience practicing in family law, attorney Alan Burton has the skill and experience required to bring your case or issue to a successful resolution. To schedule a free consultation with Mr. Burton, call our office today at 888-341-5223. To send us an email, please fill out and submit the contact form on the right side of this page.