In Lenawee County, Michigan, a father was sentenced to 14-days in jail after his children refused a second round of court-mandated reunification therapy with their mother
This morning, I had the privilege of speaking directly with Carlos Marogi. His young niece has taken to TikTok in a plea for help for herself and her younger brother.
It's common to see all sorts of personal stories "blow up" but making a video is never a guarantee. After a week, the videos shared by the Marogi family have not yet it has not reached a massive audience. The videos can be seen on the TikTok page of @RitaMarogi23 and on that page you can see several direct testimonial statements of abuse and a rundown of what the court has done and failed to do.
The family has also shown footage from inside the courtroom where the young girl was threatened with the consequence of juvenile detention when she entered, merely asking for a chance to be put on the stand.
The children have already been through unsuccessful reunification therapy with their mother, who, they allege, abused them. They have also provided witnesses and photographic evidence of this alleged abuse.
The court’s response has been that it’s best for the family to come together, but at what cost?
According to Marogi, this began with what was intended to be a trip to Australia with the kids’ mother six years ago. But instead of returning home, she kept them there for 18 months, often physically harming them. After two court orders were ignored by the alleged abuser, the family filed an international abduction report through the department of state, which ultimately led to the children being brought home to their father.
Even after the children received trauma assessments at the University of Michigan Hospital, the judge assigned to their case refused to honor their wishes of being free from their mother, who they prefer not to address with that title.
Last week, the family requested that the judge interview the older child, and that request was denied. Luckily, this is 2022 and when a judge denies a child the right to speak freely in court, she can access the less official, but just as mighty court of public opinion.
The young teen was heartbroken to learn that her father was sentenced to 14-days in jail as a result of this case. In her own words: “On August first, the judge took away a very valuable person from me and my brother for two weeks — my father, my hero. My abuser is free doing whatever she wants, but my innocent father is put in jail.”
As of this moment — Tuesday, August 9, 2022, Carlos’s brother is still sitting in jail, serving a 14-day sentence that the judge imposed after the children refused this latest round of court-mandated reunification therapy.
And what will happen next?
The Marogi family continues to fight for the safety and well-being of the children, and they have shared their sentiment that justice is not being served.
In one of their TikTok videos, you can see the children protesting outside of the courthouse, something they have done multiple times. They are on camera holding up signs showing photos of their alleged abuse, and speaking into a microphone for anyone willing to hear them.