CBS Local — A Michigan judge has halted his own order granting joint custody of an 8-year-old boy to the man who raped the boy’s then-12-year-old mother.
The controversial ruling was revoked after the judge claimed he didn’t know the father in the custody battle was the same man who committed the assault.
On Sept. 22, Sanilac County Judge Gregory S. Ross ordered that Christopher Mirasolo should have joint custody of the boy after a DNA test revealed him as the father. Nine years earlier, Mirasolo kidnapped the victim and two other women and allegedly raped the child’s mother. Mirasolo, who was 18 at the time, served only six months of a one-year jail sentence for the 2008 crime.
A Michigan Supreme Court spokesman told the Associated Press that Judge Ross wasn’t aware that Mirasolo was the mother’s rapist at the time of his decision. After reportedly learning that the 27-year-old was a convicted sex offender, Ross halted visitation rights for Mirasolo.
Public outrage has poured down on the embattled judge for his original decision as well as allegations by the victim’s attorney that Ross gave the mother’s address to her attacker and ordered Mirasolo’s name be added to the boy’s birth certificate without her consent.
“When I read the article, I was disgusted,” a second victim of Mirasolo told The Detroit News. “There is no way he should have custody… and I don’t think he should even be allowed around any children without supervision,” the 2010 victim added. Mirasolo reportedly spent nearly six years in jail for that assault.
The mother’s attorney, Rebecca Kiessling, contends that the Sanilac County prosecutor’s office is at fault for forcing her client into this position.
“It is against the law for the prosecutor to get involved in parental rights and custody matters,” Kiessling said. “That’s not their job. Their job is to prosecute and protect people, not further victimize them.” The custody battle began after the 21-year-old mother and her lawyer filed a claim for child support from her attacker.