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SACRAMENTO POLICE AND CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES SEIZE FIVE-MONTH-OLD AFTER THREATENING MOTHER, ROUGHING UP FATHER
by Sharon Rondeau
(Apr. 26, 2013) — A Sacramento, CA couple of Russian origin who took their five-month-old son to a hospital for flu-like symptoms and then sought a second opinion were met 24 hours afterward by armed police who threw the father to the ground, entering their home and taking the baby into custody.
The father, Alex Nikolaev, told Channel 10 that the situation was similar to the country he left under communism.
The baby’s mother, Anna, was not satisfied with the lack of explanation of the treatment her baby received at Sutter Memorial Hospital and took him directly to another hospital, Kaiser Permanente, after which the attending physician said that the child could go home safely with its parents.
When police showed up at their home the next day without a warrant, they “let themselves inside” after “smacking down” the husband outside of the home.
Child Protective Services alleged that the baby was taken away because of “severe neglect.” The devastated parents were allowed a one-hour visit several days after he was taken. “It seems like parents have no rights,” Alex told a reporter. The couple’s attorney said that the child was seized from “really good parents.”
The story is reminiscent of the plight of Jeffrey and Erica Henderson, which began almost three years ago with a false report of child abuse by a vindictive neighbor, culminating in Jeffrey’s collarbone being broken after he was thrown to the floor and his children being forced to submit to a strip-search by Pasadena, CA police. The couple told The Post & Email that the police in that instance also had no search warrant.
Protection from unreasonable searches and seizures is provided for in the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
A year later, after Jeffrey refused to plead guilty to resisting arrest, both parents were falsely arrested and jailed, and their then-six children placed in various foster homes, some of which were non-English-speaking when the Henderson children’s language was English. DCFS later said that placing English-speaking children in Spanish-speaking homes “would never happen” and that the parents’ story did not appear to be “accurate.”
Mrs. Henderson provided an update on Thursday evening indicating that internet trolls who wish her family ill have continued to make false reports to DCFS, judges and other authorities with the malevolent intent to see her seven children placed in permanent adoptive homes when she desperately wants to reunite with them. As a result of conflicting DCFS and court orders, Mr. and Mrs. Henderson are now separated and the overnight visits she deeply enjoyed with the children in late March and early April have ceased.
Mrs. Henderson’s youngest child was five weeks old when he was torn from her arms in a similar situation, purportedly because there was an existing case with her other six children, who were in foster care. Police had threatened Mrs. Henderson with cooperation unless she were willing to risk forfeiting visitation with the elder six.
Following the seizure of the baby, who was nursing at the time, Mrs. Henderson’s visits were changed from unmonitored to monitored without explanation. She and her husband later found that the paperwork authorizing the removal of the baby from her custody was never properly completed. Supervising Judge Michael Nash has not provided comment on the finding after two letters sent by The Post & Email inquiring about the case.
Channel 10 promised to “stay on” the Nikolaevs’ story.
Update, April 29, 2013: A petition to CPS officials with contact information has been started in support of the Nikolaev family’s reunification.