Contentious divorces are one of the major sources of false allegations of sexual assault and abuse. Spouses trying to gain an upper hand in divorce negotiations lodge allegations of abuse against themselves and their children in an attempt to get what they want. Many times, the falsely accused spouse caves to avoid threats to make the false allegations public, which can be personally and professionally damaging even if they are untrue.
In the latest example of such false allegations, a mother in Chicago forced her daughter to falsely accuse her father — the mother’s ex-husband — of sexual and physical abuse. The story is included in a press release put out by the father’s attorney, Jeffery M. Leving, who was able to successfully defend the father in court.
Neither the mother nor the father were named by Leving, an attorney who represents fathers and advocates for “Dad’s Rights.” He has also authored three books about men and divorces.
The father in this case was granted residential custody of the couple’s daughter. The mother was ordered to pay child support and, Leving alleged, tried to “gain leverage in her pursuit to change custody and terminate her child support obligation” by forcing her daughter to make false allegations against her father to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.
“The father faced wrongful incarceration and almost lost his relationship with his daughter. We fought vigorously to prove the allegations against the father were false. We won!” Leving said.
The judge in the case, who was also not named by Leving, entered a no-contact order between the mother and daughter. The mother, however, continued to reach out to the daughter and even try to get her to continue making false allegations against her father. The judge, in turn, placed the mother in jail, in part for her violations of the no-contact order but also due to her failure to pay the father more than $50,000 in child support.
“This victory, modified for broadcast, brought justice to a wrongly accused dad, and is another example of our mission dedicated to fathers and the protection of their children,” Leving said in the press release. “I’m thankful for the many men over the years who’ve found the courage to call me to fight for what counts. It isn’t easy, but we do fight, and we do win, and it feels amazing.”
Leving said this “gut-wrenching case” was “one of the worst cases of parental alienation I’ve handled,” describing parental alienation as the practice of one parent to say derogatory things about the other parent to their children. As Leving’s press release noted, many experts consider parental alienation to be a form of child abuse, while child psychologists have a term for the consequences such abuse has on the children: Parental alienation syndrome. This is alleged to cause children to become unnecessarily afraid of one parent and may lead them to disrespect or act negatively toward that parent.