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Utah Supreme Court Holds Off on Returning Adopted Girl to Father

South Carolina Army drill sergeant Terry Achane thought he would be reunited with his 2-year-old daughter in Provo Wednesday, but it didn’t turn out that way.  The Utah Supreme Court put a temporary hold on a lower court judge’s order giving Achane custody of his daughter. 

Achane’s daughter Teleah was placed for adoption at birth without his consent or knowledge.  After months of litigation, Achane’s attorney Mark Wiser says his client was en route to Provo for a hearing in 4th District Court where he expected to finally gain custody of his daughter.

“He was waiting to board the airplane in Dallas/Fort Worth to make the connection to Salt Lake City, and he had to get off the airplane because there was no hearing,” said Wiser.

The Utah Supreme court said it needed time to consider a petition filed by the adoptive parents to hold off the custody transfer.  An attorney for the adoptive parents declined to comment.  On Achane’s side, attorney Mark Wiser told KUER his client is disappointed, but he does not consider this a setback for their case.

“It simply indicates that the Supreme Court obviously understands the importance of this case, and we expect that they are going to rule in his favor, but it’s just a matter of them wanting to understand all of the case history here.”

The Utah Supreme Court has not indicated how much time it will take.  Wiser expects a decision anytime in the next month.

Andrea Smardon is new at KUER, but she has worked in public broadcasting for more than a decade. Most recently, she worked as a reporter and news announcer for WGBH radio. While in Boston, she produced stories for Morning Edition, Marketplace Money, and The World. Her print work was published in The Boston Globe and Prior to that, she worked at Seattleââ
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