published Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Craft custody attempt hits snag

Hours after a Hamilton County judge told attorneys to work together to allow Tonya Craft to see her children, her lawyers say they have hit a snag.

Ms. Craft's lawyers say the attorney for her ex-husband has ignored their calls, even after they visited his office. The ex-husband's attorney, meanwhile, said he never got any calls or messages.

"Top priority is getting her contact with the kids," said Scott King, who represents Ms. Craft. "We're trying to work it out."

But Charles Dupree, attorney for Ms. Craft's ex-husband, Joal Henke, said Wednesday, "Nobody has called me."

"I don't know anything about it, and if I do (hear from them), I'll talk with my client to see what the best route is," he said.

After Ms. Craft was found not guilty Tuesday on 22 counts of child molestation, aggravated child molestation and sexual battery, she said her top priority was to regain custody of her son and daughter.

"The only thing that's kept me going and fighting is my two children," Ms. Craft said Tuesday.

On national television, Ms. Craft said her own daughter was one of the three alleged victims in the case and that Mr. Henke had made the molestation accusations regarding their daughter.

Mr. Henke filed for immediate custody in Hamilton County after the allegations arose in 2008.

Attempts to reach Mr. Henke were unsuccessful Wednesday.

View previous stories and videos

PDF: Craft order

Video: Tonya Craft on Nightline, June 2, 2010

Video: Tonya Craft interview with Good Morning America, June 2, 2010

PDF: Tonya Craft files a $25 million lawsuit against her accusers

PDF: Complaint by Eric Echols

PDF: Complaint by Sandra Lamb

PDF: Orders on Rule 22 Request for Media Coverage

Article: Craft custody attempt hits snag

Article: Pushing state to investigate

Article: Attorney questions Craigslist investigations

Article: Prosecutor introduces claim of Craft affair

Article: Witness: Mother of alleged victim made threat

Article: Craft trial entering third week

Article: Parents of child testify in Craft molestation trial

Article: Lead investigator testifies he didn't interview fathers

Article: Second forensic interviewer testifies in molestation trial

Article: Witness testimony recounted off camera

Article: Mother of alleged molestation victim testifies

Article: Second week of craft trial begins

Article: 2 more children testify in Craft trial

Article: First child testifies in molestation case

Article: Nurse who examined three alleged molestation victims testifies

Article: Juror dismissed in Craft trial

Article: Craft was framed, lawyer says

Article: Large jury pool in Craft trial, no jury selected

Article: Child molestation cases stirring emotions

Article: Refusal to recuse stirs legal debate

PDF: Tonya Craft’s defense attorney’s request for the judge to be dismissed from the case

Article: Attorney for Craft asks judge for recusal

Article: Molestation case leads to emotional divisions

Article: Molestation trial moved to April

PDF: Tonya Craft's indictment

Mr. King and fellow attorney Clancy Covert went to Hamilton County Circuit Court on Wednesday morning to file a motion on Ms. Craft's behalf. Judge Marie Williams told them to try to work out a deal with Mr. Dupree so Ms. Craft could see her children before an official court hearing is set.

"It worked out it was best to try to resolve it first," Mr. King said.

He said he and Mr. Covert tried numerous times to contact Mr. Dupree to discuss what happens next but got no response.

Mr. Dupree said he doesn't know anything about the conversation between the judge and Ms. Craft's attorneys.

Ms. Craft testified that she and Mr. Henke went through a bitter divorce in 2004. She said that when they first split, Mr. Henke asked if their son could live with him and their daughter with her. She refused and got full custody but lost it during the criminal case.

Ms. Craft said that after Mr. Henke gained custody, she fought for more than a year to see her son. She was never allowed to see her daughter because of the molestation allegations.

Ms. Craft's mother, Betty Faires, said the family is focused on getting Ms. Craft's children back.

"Our main concern is for her children to be brought back to her," Mrs. Faires said.

Click here to vote in our daily poll: Should Tonya Craft regain full custody of her children?

Continue reading by following these links to related stories:

Article: Pushing state to investigate

Article: Attorney questions Craigslist investigations

about Joy Lukachick Smith...

Joy Lukachick Smith is the city government reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Since 2009, she's covered crime and court systems in North Georgia and rural Tennessee, landed an exclusive in-prison interview with a former cop convicted of killing his wife, exposed impropriety in an FBI-led, child-sex online sting and exposed corruption in government agencies. Earlier this year, Smith won the Malcolm Law Memorial Award for Investigative Reporting. She also won first place in ...

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rolando said...

Ya think daddy and his mouthpiece might be doing more than just making themselves scarce?? And taking the boys and girls with them??

Hm-m-m. Is something rotten in "Denmark"??

It will be interesting what the daughter has to say about her so-called interviews about what happened, lo, those two years ago...

So what happens if she is questioned/interrogated by the same Social Advocacy folks and in the same manner as they talked to the other girls.

Whatever the outcome, "Daddy" was not awarded custody originally for some reason...and that reason again stands. He tried his best to get the kids and managed it for a while...lets hear what they have to say about the last two years.

May 13, 2010 at 5:11 p.m.
Salsa said...

Is this the same lawyer who was recently reprimanded by the Board of Professional Responsibility?

May 13, 2010 at 6:46 p.m.
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