Bruce Beresford-Redman’s parents were awarded “permanent guardianship” of his two children last week, only days before the TV producer was taken into custody to face possible extradition to Mexico. Authorities there believe the former producer of the TV show “Survivor” he murdered his wife – the childrens’ mother – on a vacation there earlier this year. Beresford-Redman has denied those charges and proclaimed his innocence.
As I wrote in an earlier blog, the children, a five-year-old girl and a three-year-old boy, have been living with their paternal grandparents since their mother’s death last April. Custody became an issue in May when a Los Angeles court turned down the grandparents’ request to restore Beresford-Redman’s custody rights. During the same hearing the court also turned down a Southern California child custody request by two aunts on the mother’s side of the family.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Beresford-Redman was arrested last Tuesday and is facing extradition to Mexico in connection with his wife’s murder. He has denied any involvement in her death. As the website MyFoxLA (which combines the newsgathering resources of two different LA-area television stations, KTTV and KCOP) reports, the Los Angeles child custody dispute over the Beresford-Redman children has moved in tandem with the murder allegations against their father since last spring.
This complex and tragic case serves as a useful reminder of the ways in which Los Angeles and Orange County Child Custody actions can often wind up being tied, directly or indirectly, to non-family law matters. Bruce Beresford-Redman’s custody issues are a direct outgrowth of the fact that he may soon be facing murder charges. Reading accounts of the custody dispute is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the unusual nature of the case – a father suspected of involvement in his wife’s murder – has led his extended family to divide into separate camps over the seemingly unrelated issue of custody and visitation.
Interrelationships like these are one of the most important reasons why clients should take care in selecting a California family law attorney. Though the law is often an extremely compartmentalized profession, an experienced Orange County custody and visitation lawyer should be sufficiently well-versed in civil and criminal law to advise clients of how these other areas of our legal system may impact their case.
Contactmusic: Beresford-Redman loses custody of his children
Los Angeles Times: TV producer Bruce Beresford Redman arrested in wife’s Cancun slaying