The legal tug-of-war for custody of a young girl left alone in an apartment full of weapons took several unexpected turns Friday. Family Court Judge Alan Fine, Loreal Arscott with Children's Legal Services and Brandon Rotbart, the attorney for the girl’s father, spoke about the case.
The legal tug-of-war for custody of a young girl left alone in an apartment full of weapons took several unexpected turns Friday.
Family Court Judge Alan Fine first ignored the Department of Children and Families' recommendations and placed 4-year-old Analiz Bianchi in the custody of her biological mother Liz Marie Bones, who hasn't lived with the child for a year since she split up with the dad.
"My ruling is subject to a negative, meaning a finding of no illegal substances in the mother's system," Fine said.
Minutes later, the court would learn Bones had failed the drug test. Marijuana was found in her system, forcing the judge to place the child back in DCF custody, where she has been since she was discovered Wednesday roaming the halls of her dad's Little Havana apartment building. She turned four on Thursday.
The father, 25-year-old Luis Bianchi, allegedly told police he left the girl alone because he was late for work and thought her mother was on the way. Police said he left the girl in an apartment where they found several unsecured weapons and charged him with child neglect.
Bianchi got aggressive with reporters Thursday after bonding out of jail but was much calmer in court Friday as he asked that his daughter be placed in the care of his cousin and girlfriend Julia Escobar, who lives with him and has helped raise his daughter.
Loreal Arscott, with Children's Legal Services, told the court she was concerned "the paternal cousin lives in the home where these incidents occurred and now that the father is out of jail that would be a concern for placement there."
The father agreed to move out of his home in order for Escobar to get custody. When the judge asked if Bianchi would be taking his weapons with him the father's attorney Brandon Rotbart said "the weapons are not there anymore, they have been taken away already."
In the end, the judge asked that a home study be done on Escobar at the apartment where the father will no longer be living. In the meantime, both mother and father will get supervised visitations, and the mother will have to submit to several drug tests before the next court hearing scheduled for Aug. 12.