Tags: scott johansen | judge | lesbian | foster | child

Scott Johansen, Judge Who Said Lesbian Couple Should Lose Foster Child, Removed From Case

Image: Scott Johansen, Judge Who Said Lesbian Couple Should Lose Foster Child, Removed From Case
Equality Utah Executive Director Troy Williams, left, April Hoagland, center, and Beckie Peirce smile during a press conference outside of the Juvenile Court in Price, Utah, on Friday, Nov. 13, 2015. (Chris Detrick/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP)

By    |   Tuesday, 17 Nov 2015 02:48 PM

Scott Johansen, the Utah judge who last week ordered that a lesbian couple's foster child be removed and rehomed with a heterosexual couple, removed himself from the case on Monday amid calls for his impeachment after the decision riled people across the country.

Johansen, who initially said he had research to prove that children do better when brought up in heterosexual households, reversed his controversial ruling last week, but that did little to stop the barrage of criticism and outpouring of support for April Hoagland and Beckie Peirce, The Associated Press reported.

Hoagland and Peirce had been caring for the 9-month-old girl for the past three months as the state worked to terminate the biological mother's parental rights to the child, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.

"We love her and she loves us, and we haven't done anything wrong," Peirce told the newspaper last week. "And the law, as I understand it, reads that any legally married couple can foster and adopt."

The married women, who have the support of the child's biological mother, had to undergo background checks, home inspections, and Division of Child and Family Services interviews before they were awarded foster custody of the girl. They are also raising Peirce's biological children, ages 12 and 14.

“[The ruling] hurts me really badly because I haven't done anything wrong," Hoagland told KUTV last week. “We are shattered."

But after backlash from gay rights activists and the watchdog group Alliance for a Better Utah, which filed a complaint with state judicial officials and called for Johansen’s impeachment, the judge reversed his decision and recused himself Monday.

"Our greatest concern now is taking care of our beautiful baby foster daughter," Hoagland and Peirce said in a statement.

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Scott Johansen, the Utah judge who last week ordered that a lesbian couple's foster child be removed and rehomed with a heterosexual couple, removed himself from the case on Monday amid calls for his impeachment after the decision riled people across the country.
scott johansen, judge, lesbian, foster, child
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2015-48-17
Tuesday, 17 Nov 2015 02:48 PM
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