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Judge agrees with lower court, tosses charges against Detroit mother in standoff case

Maryanne Godboldo
Maryanne Godboldo

A Wayne County judge says a lower court was right to dismiss criminal charges against Maryanne Godboldo.

Godboldo is a Detroit mother who allegedly shot at police when they came to remove her child last March. Social workers thought Godboldo’s daughter needed psychiatric medication, but Godboldo refused to administer it, saying it made the child’s condition worse.

That dispute led to Godboldo’s standoff with police when they tried to remove the child. But two courts have now found there’s not enough evidence that Godboldo shot at police, and the order to remove her daughter was invalid.

Godboldo’s attorney Allison Folmar said no judge ever read or approved that order.

“This was a due process constitutional flaw and violation, to come into someone’s home by force and remove their child without any authority from the court,” Folmar said.

“Before you take a person’s house or car, you have a right to come to court and be heard. How much more of a right do you have when they come to take your child?”

Folmar said Godboldo is “relieved” the charges haven’t been reinstated, and to have custody of her daughter again—but both have lasting psychological trauma from the ordeal.

Wayne County prosecutors said they plan to appeal the decision again.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Public in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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