Judge and CPS do nothing after 5-year-old tests positive for cocaine

- “For him to sit there and say 'I’m not going to remove this child,' I was floored,” said family law attorney Julie Ketterman.

Ketterman is talking about Harris County Family Court Judge Charley Prine who is allowing a 5-year-old boy to remain in the custody of his dad even after the child tested positive for ingesting cocaine.

“Since he’s been born he’s always been with me,” said Cathy Barnes, the boy’s mother.

But in March, Child Protective Services took the boy away from his mother after the boy’s dad made allegations against Barnes’ boyfriend.

“The police investigation was shot down,” Barnes said. "The CPS investigation was ruled out.”

Ketterman says she pointed out to Judge Prine the boy’s mother has no criminal history whatsoever. The same thing can’t be said about the boy’s father.

“Family violence, criminal mischief harassment,” Ketterman said.

None of that swayed the judge Ketterman says, but she thought this would.

“It came back that this 5-year-old little boy had cocaine in his system,” said the attorney.

“I thought, for sure, hands down I was going to get my son back that day when we went back to court,” Barnes said.

“CPS was there,” said Ketterman. “Before the hearing, I showed them the drug test. Nobody is doing anything.”

Ketterman asked the judge to remove the child and have both parents drug tested. Judge Prine ruled the child would stay with dad even though mom agreed to take a drug test but dad refused.

“What’s going on here, I don’t get it,” Barnes said. “For my son to have cocaine in his system, and the judge does nothing, he doesn’t care.”

Judge Charley Prine says he can’t comment on this case due to the on-going CPS investigation. But In their statement, CPS says it’s the judge who decides whether the child should be removed not them.

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