A Brentwood, Tennessee attorney was indicted this week for allegedly interfering with the Tennessee Department of Children's Services after she allowed a client and her child to stay at her home last year.
Family law attorney Connie Reguli allowed her client, Wendy Hancock, and her daughter to stay at Reguli's home in Brentwood last year after she says the Department of Children's Services tried to take custody of Hancock's daughter in DeKalb County.
Reguli says the department filed an ex parte petition to remove Hancock's daughter from her custody last August, alleging Hancock was dealing drugs and physically abusing her children. Connie Reguli Reguli, who says she made several attempts to speak with DCS case workers prior to that order, told her client she and her daughter could stay at Reguli's home until they scheduled a court hearing to address the order. That led the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation to issue an endangered child alert after the 12-year-old girl went missing, and she was found in Brentwood the next day.
"I said, 'Just come on to Nashville, I'm gonna try to get us a court date,'" Reguli said.
"I take the position there were total due process violations and jurisdictional violations. There were so many screw ups in this case."
When police arrived to Reguli's home, the girl was found to be "well taken care of," according to a Brentwood police report. After Hancock's children were taken in DCS custody, they were placed into foster care for 10 months, and were returned to Hancock last month, according to Reguli. She said DCS' investigation into the allegations of abuse and neglect were found to be unsubstantiated and dropped.
Original story by:
Elaina Sauber at firstname.lastname@example.org, 615-571-1172 or follow @ElainaSauber on Twitter.