Michigan Court of Appeals Ruling
Maryanne Godboldo has had one of the roughest rides on the legal train here in Michigan, with charges being brought, overturned, brought again, dismissed, struck down and then upheld. We can only imagine the heartbreak and frustration that this poor mother has endured, for no crime other than trying to do the right thing for her daughter.
This entire ordeal began back in 2011, when Godboldo refused to administer Risperidone to her daughter, Ariana, which the state had ordered for her. Risperidone is known to be an extremely dangerous antipsychotic, with a high rate of death among it’s users. But because of the refusal, CPS determined that Ariana should be removed from her mother’s care for medical neglect.
DHS employees came to the Godboldo home and, with the aid of police and a fully armed SWAT team, forced their way inside. The document they used to justify this action was a “writ”, which is a judicial order, but in this case it had been rubber stamped without a judge ever reviewing it. It has since been determined that CPS did not have a legal court order, or even a warrant signed by a judge, that allowed them to legally enter the Godboldo home.
Godboldo, in an effort to keep SWAT teams from breaking down the door and forcing their way into the bedroom where she was hiding with her daughter, fired a bullet into the air. After lengthy negotiations, during which time CPS promised not to administer Risperidone to Ariana, Godboldo agreed to relinquish her daughter. CPS, unsurprisingly, lied about the drug, and immediately began Ariana on a steady diet of the dangerous antipsychotic. Godboldo was charged with firing a weapon inside a building.
Since the initial ordeal, it has been proven that CPS had no right to force their way into the Godboldo home, no right to take Ariana from her mother, and no right to force the girl to take Risperidone. But despite all of the many terrible errors and violations committed by the state in this case, the charges against Maryanne for trying to protect her daughter and herself were pursued.
In a confusing sequence of events, the prosecution brought charges against her, which were then struck down, only to be brought again and struck down again. This has twice been upheld by the court, and yet the state persists. Doggedly forcing this mother back into court, time and time again, trying desperately to make her pay for something that she would never have been forced to do, if only they hadn’t violated the law to begin with.
Godboldo’s attorney made a statement to the press following the Court of Appeals decision to uphold the charges: “We will continue to fight this. We are extremely disappointed. We have been upheld twice already. I have not read the ruling yet, but we may appeal to the (Michigan) Supreme Court.”
Should Maryanne Godboldo be forced to endure a trial, we can only hope that the jury can see the monstrous abuse of power that took place in this case, and find her not guilty of all charges.