Tenn. foster child during well with dad in Nebraska - WKRN News 2

Tenn. foster child during well with dad in Nebraska, attorneys say

Posted: Updated: Jun 18, 2014 05:47 PM
Sonya McCaul, 9, was sent to live with her biological father in Omaha, Nebraska in January. Sonya McCaul, 9, was sent to live with her biological father in Omaha, Nebraska in January.
DICKSON, Tenn. -

An emotional high-profile custody battle that has made national headline was back in court Wednesday afternoon.

During the status hearing, two attorneys for Sonya McCaul said the 9-year-old is not only doing well in the Nebraska home she now shares with her birth father but that she is an A student and has no desire to return to Tennessee.

In January, a judge ordered Sonya placed into the custody of her biological father, John McCaul, of Omaha, Nebraska.

The state terminated McCaul's rights because he was sentenced to 10 years in a federal prison. A federal judge later reduced his sentence to seven years making McCaul eligible to regain his parental rights.

McCaul petitioned the court for custody of Sonya and, after a five year legal battle, a Dickson County judge ordered the little girl be turned over to him.

Sonya remains in the custody of the Department of Children Services while in Nebraska, but is currently completing a temporary trial home visit with McCaul.

Last month, the court blocked an attempt by Sonya’s foster parents, David and Kimberly Hodgin of Dickson County, to get back physical custody of the girl they raised for eight years.

"They won't let us talk to her," David Hodgin told News 2 Wednesday. "We’re continuing to fight for our daughter and won't stop until the wrong is righted. Period."

Another hearing will be held on July 30 so the judge can get another update on how Sonya is doing.

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