(Excerpt from Petition to U.S. Supreme Court Writ for Certiorari)
STATEMENT OF THE CASE
- The Facts and Trial
In the case at bar, there has been no less than ten (10) separate judges in what began as a simple and straightforward divorce action involving domestic abuse against both the Petitioner and the Original parties’ minor child, now aged 10 years old.
On October 6, 2009, attorney Patricia McDade, on behalf of the Husband, Troy Frank Burns filed for divorce in order to “get your (Petitioner) ass in line”. (TR – Vol. ___, pg. ___)
Honorable Judge Robbie Beal signed the Temporary Injunction and Restraining Order on October 6, 2009.
On October 22, 2009, attorney John Milazo, on behalf of the Mother, Amy Louise Burns filed an answer and a counter-complaint for divorce.
On October 30, 2009, Mother filed Parenting Course Certification.
On November 11, 2009, a Temporary Parenting Plan was entered. Mother was awarded 90% parenting time without objection from the Father.
On January 11, 2010, Mother filed an Ex-Parte Petition for an Order of Protection. Judge Robbie Beal signed the Order on January 13, 2010.
A hearing for the Order of Protection was postponed by the court numerous times awaiting the outcome of the Mediation that was scheduled to take place on April 2, 2010.
Mediation took place at attorney Mary-Catherine Kelly’s office in Franklin, Tennessee on April 6, 2010. The Mother, having timely completed Interrogatories and Discovery, signed the mediation agreement. During mediation, Father, having only provided skeletal responses to Interrogatories and Discovery, offered that the Wife and child move back to the residence (Father had threatened to kill the Wife if she and the parties’ minor child did not leave the residence in late June 2009; the Wife and child did relocate in July 2009.) Mother did not accept Husband’s offer. Husband/Father refused to sign the Mediation agreement. Part of the mediation agreement was to remove the Order of Protection against the Father. Wife was promised that the Husband would sign the mediation agreement after the Order of Protection was removed. Wife and Husband appeared in Court on April 6th, 2010. Wife agreed to remove the Order of Protection against the Husband. Husband subsequently relinquished his offer of signing mediation.
On or around April 10, 2010, mother asked that John Milazo remove himself from the case. Mother filed a complaint to the Board of Professional Responsibilty. (complaint no. ____; it was dismissed without explanation.)
On October 29, 2010, Husband and Paternal Grandmother, Evelyn Faye Burns, filed a false police report against the Mother. Evelyn Faye Burns falsely reported that she had been physically struck by the Mother, Amy Louise Burns.
(Charges were later dropped by the District Attorney’s office in March of 2011.)
On November 18th, 2010, Mother filed a Motion to prevent the Paternal Grandmother, Evelyn Faye Burns, from administering corporal punishment upon the parties, then 4-year-old child. On January 11, 2011, Honorable Judge Jeffrey Bivins signed the Order. Honorable Judge Jeffrey Bivins now sits at the Tennessee Supreme Court. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On January 11, 2011, the Honorable Judge Jeffrey Bivins signed the order preventing the paternal grandmother, Evelyn Faye Burns, from administering corporal punishment upon the parties’ minor child. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On March 6, 2011, the District Attorney’s office dismissed the charge against the mother. The Mother’s (clean prior) record was expunged by the Honorable Judge Denise Andre.
On June 2, 2011, Petitioner/Mother filed a second Petition for an Order of Protection.
On September 6th, 2011, after re-set numerous times by the Court, Honorable Judge James Martin presiding over the hearing regarding Mother’s Petition for a Permanent Order of Protection. Mother informed her then attorney, Timothy Tull Prior to the hearing that her mother had suffered a stroke and that she would need to re-schedule for the following day. Court proceeded without the Mother and without her attorney. The case was subsequently dismissed. The Honorable Judge James Martin signed the order and the order was entered on September 6, 2011. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On September 25, 2011, Mother and the parties’ minor child appeared at Williamson County Sheriff’s Department to report abuse bestowed upon the then 4-year old child. Photos were taken by Sgt. Twanda McCurry of excessive bruising and markings consistent with a strap/belt. Deputy Aaron Ferguson made the report and stated that the child informed him that the paternal grandmother had abused her at her father’s home and at the paternal grandmother’s home. No prosecution was taken. Attorney General Derek Smith refused to prosecute. Detective Tameka Sanders stated to the Mother, “Maybe your child bruises easily.”
On October 3, 2011, paternal grandmother, attorney Deana Hood, filed a Motion to Intervene into the parties’ divorce on behalf of Evelyn Faye Burns. The purpose of the Motion to Intervene was for the paternal grandmother to obtain a restraining order against the Mother.
On October 18, 2011, Mother again filed a Petition for an order of Protection against both the father and the paternal grandmother.
On October 25, 2011, Mother filed tort actions against both the Father and the paternal grandmother for malicious prosecution, filing a false police report, and submitting tampered audio tape evidence.
On October 26, 2011, a three-way call between Mother’s then counsel, Mark Scruggs, Patricia McDade, and the Honorable Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood ensued without notifying the Mother. The phone call was set up by Circuit Court Clerk Debbie McMillan Barrett. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On December 6, 2011, the day the trial was set to be heard, but re-set by the court, attorney Deana Hood filed a Motion to Consolidate Evelyn Faye Burns’ tort (already in default as the paternal grandmother had not responded to the lawsuit) filed by the Mother in General Sessions Court (2012-573) into the divorce action.
On December 13, 2011, attorney Patricia McDade filed a Motion to Consolidate her client’s tort action (already in default, as the Husband did not respond to the lawsuit) filed in General Sessions Court (2012-574) into the divorce action.
On December 13, 2011, the Honorable Judge Donald Harris allowed Wife’s attorney to withdraw as was the Wife’s request. The Wife/Petitioner was granted 30 days to obtain new counsel. Then, attorney Deana Hood asked that her Motions be heard that day. The judge agreed. The Honorable Judge Donald Harris agreed to allow the paternal grandmother to Intervene into the divorce action (without hearing evidence regarding the Reason to enter into the divorce). The Honorable Judge Harris also agreed to consolidate the tort filed against the paternal grandmother, Evelyn Faye Burns, into the divorce action. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On or about December 16, 2012, the Governor of Tennessee, Bill Haslam, appoints former district attorney (with No Family Law Experience) to fill the bench left open by now Justice Jeffrey Bivins.
On January 5, 2012, an Order was entered signed by the Honorable Judge Donald Harris allowing the paternal grandmother to intervene and to allow the tort action filed against be consolidated into the divorce action. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On March 7, 2012, The Honorable Judge Derek Smith was defeated by the Honorable Judge Michael Binkley.
On March 9, 2012, after learning that the now “former” District Attorney, Derek Smith, would be presiding over the litigants divorce action, the Mother, on behalf of her then attorney, Cynthia Bohn, for the judge to recuse himself.
On March 15, 2012, feeling in fear for her and her child’s safety, the Mother legally fled to a domestic and sexual abuse shelter; Michigan State University (Mother’s alma mater) Safe Place. #5 of the Temporary Restraining Order allows parents to flee with their child if they have a reasonable belief that they or their child is/was being harmed.
On March 18, 2012, the Mother informed her attorney, Cynthia Bohn that she and her daughter were in a shelter and would not be attending court on March 20, 2012. (The Order of Protection filed on October 18, 2011, was “expected to be heard”. No Petition had been filed, however, it was Husband’s intent to obtain full custody of the parties’ minor child on March 20, 2012.
On March 20, 2012, the Mother also informed the Court that she would not be in court due to fear and that she and the parties’ minor child were residing in a domestic violence shelter. She FAX-filed motions to continue and a motion to dismiss her attorney, Cynthia Bohn from MSU Safe Place by her advocate Erica Schmittell.
On the afternoon of March 20, 2012, the court denied Mother’s motion to continue. The Court granted Mother’s motion for her attorney to withdraw and granted the Mother 15 days to obtain new counsel. However, court proceeded nonetheless. The Honorable Judge Derek Smith heard testimony from Dr. David McMillan (neither the Father’s Nor the Mother’s expert witness) did not hear the Mother’s Petition for an Order of Protection. The Honorable Judge Derek Smith granted full custody to the Father allowing the Father full and complete control of when and if the mother and child would have any contact whatsoever. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On March 21, 2012, the Honorable Judge Derek Smith denied Mother’s motion to recuse himself.
On March 23, 2012, Husband’s private investigator perjured himself on an Affidavit, prepared by husband’s attorney Kerry Cole in Michigan, stating that he was at a hearing in which he “heard that the Mother had physically abused the child”. The Eaton County Michigan Court granted Husband’s Ex-Parte Petition to Register the Tennessee’s custody in Michigan. An Emergency warrant to pick up the parties’ minor child was issued.
On March 24, 2012, according to MSU Police Report, the private investigator, Tony Poma GPS’d Mother’s telephone.
On March 24, 2012, three MSU Police arrived at the shelter where Petitioner/Mother and the parties’ minor child had been residing since March 13, 2012. No warrant was presented to the Mother. No Petition informing the Mother to appear at a hearing on the “next judicial day”, aka, Monday, March 26, 2012. (Mother obtained the Michigan court documents in the late fall of 2012 after asking for them at the Eaton County Court House in Charlotte, Michigan.) The Petition also stated that mother had “21 days to contest the Petition”. 21 days had passed long before.
On April 3, 2012 Mother appeared before the Honorable Judge Timothy Easter for a hearing to terminate her support. When asked why she fled the jurisdiction, the Wife/Mother informed the Court. Judge Easter told the mother that she was “offending the court” and threatened her with handcuffs and jail.
The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On or about April 10, 2012, the Maternal Grandmother attended the parties’ minor child’s school to eat lunch with the child. The next day, the Father forbid the maternal grandmother from participating at the school and having any contact with the child at her school. (Prior to this, it was common for the maternal grandmother to attend her grandchild’s school for lunch, parties, etc.)
On or about April 16, 2012, the Maternal Grandmother, Bonnie Fedewa, arrived at “Let is Shine” gymnastics in Spring Hill, Tennessee to watch her then 5-year old grand-daughter. The Father called the Spring Hill Police. The father was told that the child’s grandmother had every right to attend. Subsequently, the Father unenrolled the child from gymnastics.
On June 19, 2012, after no response from the Father as to the welfare of the parties’ minor child, the Mother, noticing the paternal grandmother’s vehicle in the marital homes’ residence pulled into the driveway and called the police.
The Mother was arrested for trespassing, although there was no order preventing Mother from being on the property (and the Husband had attempted to have the Mother arrested in January 2012, but was told via the Williamson County Sheriff’s office, that unless there was an order, the mother could come on the marital property.
On July 23, 2012, Mother appeared before the Honorable Judge Derek Smith on her Motion for Emergency Custody with witness ready to testify on her and the parties’ minor child’s behalf. The Motion was denied and re-set for August 7, 2012. The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On July 23, 2012, the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal signed the order denying Mother’s emergency motion for custody.
On August 7, 2012, before the Honorable Judge Derek Smith, all of Mother’s motions were dismissed. (T____) The Honorable Judge Derek Smith dismissed both tort actions that were consolidated into the divorce. Mother’s witnesses were unable to testify. Mother and child had been absent from each other for the first time in the child’s short life for over four months at this point. The father was not allowing the Mother contact unless she submitted to an evaluation with Dr. David McMillan, the wife of Judge Marietta Shipley. Attorney Deana Hood acted on behalf of both her client, Evelyn Faye Burns and on behalf of attorney Patrica McDade’s client, Troy Frank Burns.
The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal was still a sitting judge in Williamson County Tennessee.
On or about January 10, 2013, Petitioner Amy Louise Burns retained Brentwood, Tennessee attorney Connie Reguli.
On March 25, 2013, Robbie Beal Honorable Judge denied the Mother’s motion for Sanctions against attorneys, Patricia McDade and Deana Hood.
A complaint was also filed against attorney McDade and Hood. (Board of Professional Responsibility Complaint No. _____) No action was taken against the attorneys for alleging to the court that Dr. McMillan stated that it was the “worst case of parental alienation he had ever seen” (referring to the Mother). The Independent Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility dismissed mother’s complaint referring to the fact that the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal dismissed Sanctions against the two attorneys.
On April 3, 4, and 5, 2013 the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal presided over the first 3 days of trial. Nearly half of Mother’s witnesses were not heard. The Mother and child had still been completely cut off by the Father and with the permission of the court/s.
Nearly a year and a half later, on August 13, 14, and 15, 2014, the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal presided over the next 3 days of trial. Judge Beal did not recuse himself even after his Wife had contributed money to Deana Hood’s campaign for Circuit Court Judge. She lost by a very narrow margin.
On August 22, 2014, the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal stated that for grounds: adultery and domestic violence perpetuated by the Father upon the Mother and witnessed by the child. The Father was given full custody. Mother was ordered supervised visits in which she would have to pay. Mother was awarded Skype three times per week for ½ hour Controlled by the Father. Mother was ordered to pay child support in the amount of $387 per month. Father was not held in contempt for not submitting complete disclosure of financial documents/accounts (millions upon millions funneled through the on-line business he and the Petitioner created together) to the court – Ever.
A “Review Hearing” was set for March 5, 2014. Mother was to submit to psychological counseling due to the court crediting Dr. David McMillan’s testimony and the testimony of psychiatric Dr. Stephen Montgomery, who Mother was court-ordered to submit to a parental evaluation. Incidentally, the Father was not order to submit a psychological evaluation, although required for a complete evaluation of parental fitness analysis. The report by Dr. Montgomery stated that Mother was delusional, for essentially, believing her daughter’s reports of abuse by the paternal grandmother, Evelyn Faye Burns. No specific type of counseling was required.
The Honorable Judge Robbie Beal retired directly after Burns v. Burns; 36808 in Williamson County, Tennessee.
On February 19, 2014, the Honorable Judge Michael Binkley ordered that all Skype contact be discontinued with the Mother and child. Mother was in the process of being admitted to the hospital for severe stress and PTSD.
On March 5, 2014, due to inclement weather, court was postponed to April 2, 2014.
On March 25, 2014 the case was transferred to the Honorable Judge Joseph “Woody” Woodruff.
On April 2, 2014, Mother appeared before the Honorable Judge Joseph “Woody” Woodruff. Mother was not allowed to testify due to the fact that Judge Joseph “Woody” Woodruff was going to be her judge in the criminal case (trespassing at the marital residence) the following week and he did not wish for her to “incriminate” herself. All of Mother’s motions were denied, including one in which she filed to disqualify attorney Deana Hood who was now representing the Father, Troy Frank Burns, as well. Mother was only allowed Skype contact with her daughter; still at the control of the Father. All of mother’s school activities were denied to her, although the Honorable Judge Robbie Beal had granted “standard visitation”.
She and her daughter have not had any physical contact since July 2014.