Mother, Partner Denied Visiting Rights with Son

Circuit Judge Buford M. Parsons Jr. ruled that Sharon Bottoms will not be allowed to visit her son while her partner, April Wade, is present. The Judge offered no explanation for his ruling.

Parsons affirmed a 1993 decision by a juvenile court to transfer custody of the child, Tyler Dustou, from Sharon to her mother on the grounds that Sharon was an unfit mother because she had oral sex, a felony in Virginia, with her partner. Although a state appeals court reversed the decision in 1994, a Virginia Supreme Court reaffirmed the ruling, claiming that living in a gay household could subject Tyler to “social condemnation.”


AP - March 4, 1998

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