Karen Kristine Sudderth, today a 52-year old woman, kidnapped her child 12-years ago and fled the United States to Senegal in West Africa, and later to Thailand.
Back in 1996, Karen Kristine Sudderth had custody of the child (then 5-years old), with the father, David Calhoun, having visitation rights every other weekend under a court-approved plan. However, on August 30th, 1996, Sudderth failed to bring the boy for Calhoun’s scheduled parenting time. She had whisked their son away to Africa.
From the article:
Lewis County prosecutors charged Sudderth with first-degree custodial interference in January 1997, and she was charged in November 1997 by federal prosecutors for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
In 1999, Karen Kristine Sudderth was indicted by a grand jury on international parental kidnapping charges. She faces a prison term of up to three years and a $250,000 fine.
Unfortunately for David Calhoun, who hasn’t seen his son since 1996, those years are long gone and no one knows the type of parental alienation he’s endured over that time. It’s probably no coincidence that the mother has returned with the child after his 18th birthday. As a legal adult, the court cannot impose an order which would require him to ever see his father. Sudderth’s mission was completed, probably to her satisfaction, and the lives of the child and Mr. Calhoun shall never be the same. The lengths some parents will go to in order to separate children from their targets never ceases to disappoint.
Here’s hoping that she is punished harshly for committing such an awful crime against not only David Calhoun, but their child as well.
For the full article click here: Arrested: Woman wanted for 12 years for kidnapping son
Additionally, and this comes as no surprise as we see such stories all the time, David Calhoun’s attorney asserts that Karen Kristine Sudderth falsely accused him of child abuse during the contentious divorce and custody proceedings. This is a common tactic among those looking to gain an upper hand in custody battles. Calhoun was cleared by authorities and even passed a voluntary polygraph test in his own defense at the time.
Undeterred, Sudderth kidnapped the child, fled the United States, and effectively severed the bond between the boy and his father. It is David Calhoun’s hope that with the aid of psychologists, he can somehow regain a relationship with his son.