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Child arrangement Order, Father been arrested.

(16 Posts)
Sarahsworldart Fri 29-Jul-16 17:41:39

Can anyone help me with my dilemma? My 5 year old little boy used to stay with his father and his wife on weekends since he has been a toddler & therefore he has a very strong relationship with his stepmother, in fact this bond is much stronger than that with his father. They have since separated and she has moved out with her 17yr old daughter and live in a house nearbye. Since they have split, she approached me to ask to still continue contact with my son, which I have agreed to as they are so close etc. His father does not want the relationship to continue and demaded that I don't let her see him because she apparently has mothing to do with him, I should add at this point that her 17yr old daughter wants nothing to do with him. I have ignored this explaining that I will let her see him and that they have a strong bond since he has been a baby. In April my son was staying at his dads and on this occasion we had arranged for him to be dropped off the following morning as I had arranged a day out with my other 2 children and he was seeing his stepmother in the evening for a few hours. I received a text msg saying he would drop my son off the following day as he was keeping him until the Friday, to which I replied that these were not the plans and I would pick him up immediately. As I drove into his road, I saw him running out the house with my son trying to get him in his car. I ran up the road and said that I have not agreed to this and that he knew we had plans for the day, eve. He aggressively pulled my son away from me and ran into his house with him. He would not let me take him home and would not answer the door. Police were called, waited couple hours, all reports are on file. So after this incident I decided to temporarily not let him see my son as he then went on to act aggressively around myself and ex-wife, banging on both our doors late at night and stalking outside my house. A couple of weeks after I stopped contact due to his threatening and aggressive behaviour & also he was stalking the stepdaughter, he then sent me a solicitors letter and took me to court for a child arrangements order and to apply for parental responsibility when he has ever had amything to with schooling decisions or anything apart from seeing him on some weekends and then the ex wife was looking after him all the time, leaving him with her a lot of the time and going off fishing etc. So I filled in all the forms included all the police reports etc. regarding his behaviour and went to court at beginning of July. I also set up contact through a local contact centre as I was willing for him to have contact but through a centre at first to access his behaviour and make sure my son was ok, as at this point he did not want to see his dad because of all the aggressive behaviour he had seen etc. I had no solicitor as could not afford one, did it all myself, told them about all the police reports, the stalking the odd behaviour and aggression etc. I was pushed by his solicitor to agree to a child arrangement order which was put through but did not agree to him having parental responsibility and this is due to be heard again by statements at beginning October. She was saying that a contact centre was not the ideal place etc. really wish I had stuck to that plan and was pressurised into agreeing. I have found out from the ex wife that he has been arrested on Sunday for two separate counts of rape by the ex-wife and this is an ongoing investigation which will eventually go to court. In the light of this new information I am even more worried about letting my son stay with him on his own and I don't want him to be with him as I don't know what he may be capable of now. If I refuse to let him see him what will happen with regards to the arrangements order? Will he have to take me back to court? I think I have a good reason not to let him see him, what mother would let their child stay with a rapist!!???.. I need advice am so stressed and the overnight stays at his dads are supposed to start from 5th August he is meant to stay for the whole weekend, alternate weekends as at the moment it has been for the last 3 Sundays from 10am to 2pm first 2 Sundays, then 11-7pm last Sunday and next Sunday. I just cant let him stay am so worried, I don't want to breach the arrangements order but don't want to put my son in danger??

MrsBertBibby Fri 29-Jul-16 17:59:37

Was the pending prosecution not flagged up in the CAFCASS background checks?

Missgraeme Fri 29-Jul-16 18:08:29

Who u let spend time with your child is not his business. I personally would stop all contact until u go to court. Of course u have the right to keep him away from a potential sex offender.

PotteringAlong Fri 29-Jul-16 18:12:41

but don't want to put my son in danger

Unless he's been arrested for raping young children, why would your son be in danger?

CremeEggThief Fri 29-Jul-16 18:18:48

Rapists and sex offenders are not suitable people to be around any children, PotteringAlong.shock

OP, can you speak to the police about this new development? Could you access any free legal advice in your area? I don't think any parent would be calm in this situation, but it would help to clarify it legally.

StealthPolarBear Fri 29-Jul-16 18:21:10

Yes agree
Wouldn't want my children near a rapist

TheWeeBabySeamus1 Fri 29-Jul-16 18:22:10

You can fill out a C2 form if there's a child arrangements order in place. A C2 form is an official request to stop contact.

PotteringAlong Fri 29-Jul-16 18:24:58

Rapists and sex offenders are not suitable people to be around any children, PotteringAlong.

I don't disagree. But if you go down the route if stopping contact because "my child is in danger" then the honest answer is "actually, no, he isn't".

PotteringAlong Fri 29-Jul-16 18:25:51

You might not agree or like it but you need a legal route not a gut reaction route.

StealthPolarBear Fri 29-Jul-16 18:35:04

If the only danger considered is being raped then maybe.
I'd argue a rapist is unlikely to be a good father. He is a lot more likely than a child with a non rapist father to be exposed to unsuitable images or put in inappropriate situations, I'd imagine.

CremeEggThief Fri 29-Jul-16 18:49:04

I would wonder if it actually constitutes neglect, knowingly allowing a child to have contact with a convicted sex offender. I suppose there would have to be a conviction and there is a difference between supervised and unsupervised contact, legally speaking.

thisisafakename Sun 31-Jul-16 19:45:57

You need to bring the matter back to court urgently and ask for a variation of the existing order. If you simply stop contact, you are in breach of the order and he can take you to court to enforce it.

The court will have to determine whether continued overnight stays are in your DS's best interests. Has he been charged with rape or is there just an ongoing investigation? Do you know anything about his bail conditions? Sometimes these will make overnight contact difficult anyway- for example if he is not permitted into a certain geographical area. I can't say what the court would do, but I would hope, given the very serious nature of the allegations, that they would order a Cafcass report and agree to it being in a contact centre for now.

babybarrister Sun 31-Jul-16 19:54:25

there are two separate issues:

1. contact with the father
2. contact with the ex wife

everyone with PR has a right to be heard re both issues ....

re the father, given the charges are very serious I imagine that the court would want a contact centre for the time being in any event but it needs to return to court

Missgraeme Sun 31-Jul-16 20:00:55

If word gets out he is an accused rapist maybe his house isn't a safe place for your son. (vigilantes etc?)

TimeforaNNChange Sun 31-Jul-16 22:06:39

Deep breaths OP, you will need to remain calm, in control and objective in order to represent yourself and protect your DCs.

Your DS father has not been found guilty of anything, yet. In fact, if I understand your OP correctly, he has not even been charged with anything yet.
He has been arrested on suspicion of rape, and has presumably, been bailed. Again, if I've read correctly, the person he is alleged to have raped is his exW (your DS former stepmum).

Many of the adults in your DS's life are currently caught up in this drama. He needs you to be calm, and stable.

There is no reason, right now, to believe that your DS father is any more of a risk to him now than before he was arrested.
If you have a Child Arrangements Order in place, it is important you stick to it, unless you can present evidence to a judge that leads you to believe that your DS is at risk of harm.

If you are concerned about your DS safety, give your local Soc Serv team a ring, explain that you have heard that your DS father has been arrested for a sexual offence and you are concerned for his safety. Soc Serv will be able to liaise with the police and establish whether the allegations made against your ex increase the risk to your DS, either from him directly, or from potential vigilante attack (which is very rare, and almost unheard of in domestic rape cases).

TimeforaNNChange Sun 31-Jul-16 22:06:41

Deep breaths OP, you will need to remain calm, in control and objective in order to represent yourself and protect your DCs.

Your DS father has not been found guilty of anything, yet. In fact, if I understand your OP correctly, he has not even been charged with anything yet.
He has been arrested on suspicion of rape, and has presumably, been bailed. Again, if I've read correctly, the person he is alleged to have raped is his exW (your DS former stepmum).

Many of the adults in your DS's life are currently caught up in this drama. He needs you to be calm, and stable.

There is no reason, right now, to believe that your DS father is any more of a risk to him now than before he was arrested.
If you have a Child Arrangements Order in place, it is important you stick to it, unless you can present evidence to a judge that leads you to believe that your DS is at risk of harm.

If you are concerned about your DS safety, give your local Soc Serv team a ring, explain that you have heard that your DS father has been arrested for a sexual offence and you are concerned for his safety. Soc Serv will be able to liaise with the police and establish whether the allegations made against your ex increase the risk to your DS, either from him directly, or from potential vigilante attack (which is very rare, and almost unheard of in domestic rape cases).

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