“I’m in Family Law because I have to be. It’s a required 18-month rotation. I don’t like it. And if I could choose not to do it, I would not do it,” said Circuit Court Judge Michael J. Algeo, who oversaw the custody battle over Prince, on March 14, 2012.
A faulty and callous legal system,” Prince’s grandfather wrote the judge, sent the boy to a death that was “at best . . . neglect. At worst . . . murder.”
The problem: Distraught mothers often are dismissed, and seemingly competent fathers overvalued, by courts understandably reluctant to deny parents access to their children. Women who warn of danger are seen as vengeful or “crying wolf.” Traumatized by abuse, many of them don’t make ideal witnesses. Fathers pleading to be a part of their children’s lives are welcomed as a refreshing change from the deadbeat dads courts are accustomed to.
As a result, Prince is now dead, after Judge Algeo let his father have unsupervised visits with him.