Angelina Jolie says judge in Brad Pitt divorce won’t let children testify

 Angelina Jolie criticized a judge deciding on custody preparations for her and Brad Pitt’s children throughout their divorce, saying in a court docket submitting that the judge refused to permit their children to testify.

Jolie, who has sought to disqualify Judge John Ouderkirk from the divorce case, mentioned in the submitting Monday that he declined to listen to proof she says is related to the children’s security and well-being earlier than issuing a tentative ruling. The paperwork don’t elaborate on what that proof could also be.

“Judge Ouderkirk denied Ms. Jolie a fair trial, improperly excluding her evidence relevant to the children’s health, safety, and welfare, evidence critical to making her case,” in keeping with the submitting in California’s Second District Court of Appeal.

The actress additionally mentioned the judge “has failed to adequately consider” a piece of the California courts code, which says it’s detrimental to the most effective curiosity of the kid if custody is awarded to an individual with a historical past of home violence. Her submitting didn’t give particulars about what it was referring to, however her legal professionals submitted a doc underneath seal in March that purportedly presents extra data.

Jolie sought a divorce in 2016, days after a disagreement broke out on non-public flight ferrying the actors and their children from France to Los Angeles. Pitt was accused of being abusive towards his then-15-year-old son throughout the flight, however investigations by youngster welfare officers and the FBI had been closed with no prices being filed in opposition to the actor. Jolie’s lawyer mentioned on the time that she sought a divorce “for the health of the family.”

Her new submitting says the judge has “refused to hear the minor teenagers’ input as to their experiences, needs, or wishes as to their custody fate,” citing a California code that says a baby 14 or over needs to be allowed to testify in the event that they need to.

Three of Jolie and Pitt’s six children are youngsters, 17-year-old Pax, 16-year-old Zahara, and 14-year-old Shiloh. The oldest, Maddox, is nineteen and never topic to the custody choice. They even have 12-year-old twins, Vivienne and Knox.

In response to Jolie’s submitting, Pitt’s attorneys mentioned, “Ouderkirk has conducted an extensive proceeding over the past six months in a thorough, fair manner and reached a tentative ruling and order after hearing from experts and percipient witnesses.”

Pitt’s submitting mentioned the judge discovered Jolie’s testimony “lacked credibility in many important areas, and the existing custody order between the parties must be modified, per Mr. Pitt’s request, in the best interests of the children.”

It says Jolie’s objections and additional delays in reaching an association would “work grave harm upon the children, who will be further denied permanence and stability.”

It’s not clear what the present custody association is as a result of the court docket seals most information. When the divorce course of started, Jolie sought main bodily custody — that means the children would dwell greater than half the time together with her — however adjustments have been made that haven’t been made public. Pitt sought joint custody.

Lawyers for each side declined to touch upon the brand new filings.

Others near Jolie say her household struggles have prompted her to take a extra energetic function in altering the legislation’s strategy to custody points.

“Ms. Jolie has been working privately for four and a half years to both heal her family and to fight for improvements to the system to ensure that other families do not experience what hers has endured,” Peter Harvey, an lawyer and former lawyer common of New Jersey who has been working with Jolie on coverage points, informed The Associated Press.

Jolie has sought to disqualify Ouderkirk, a non-public judge she and Pitt selected to take care of their privateness, arguing that he has an improper enterprise relationship with one in every of Pitt’s attorneys.

She mentioned in Monday’s submitting that if the tentative custody choice is made remaining by Ouderkirk, she’s going to enchantment it.

Jolie, 45, and Pitt, 57, had been amongst Hollywood’s most outstanding {couples} for 12 years. They had been married for 2 years when Jolie filed for divorce. They had been declared divorced in April 2019, after their legal professionals requested for a judgment that allowed a married couple to be declared single whereas different points remained, together with funds and youngster custody.


Jocelyn Gecker reported from San Francisco.

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