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Tulsans Hold Vigil For 'Baby Veronica,' Adoptive Parents

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Oklahomans held a candlelight vigil for the adoptive parents of Baby Veronica on Sunday night. Oklahomans held a candlelight vigil for the adoptive parents of Baby Veronica on Sunday night.
The Capobiancos adoption of the girl was finalized in South Carolina on July 31. The Capobiancos adoption of the girl was finalized in South Carolina on July 31.

Oklahomans held a candlelight vigil for the adoptive parents of Baby Veronica on Sunday night.

Supporters of Matt and Melanie Capobianco also said the couple has not been treated well as they try to take the girl back to their home in South Carolina.

The vigil took place at Centennial Park near downtown Tulsa Sunday evening.

Supporters of the adoptive parents said the focus needs to be more on Veronica and not just the parents fighting for custody.

"It's not just one family it's all the families," vigil organizer Nancy Shively said.

8/17/2013 Related Story: 'Baby Veronica' Hearings Take Place In Oklahoma; Mediation Agreement Filed

The Capobiancos were present at Veronica's birth and raised her for more than two years. The South Carolina Supreme Court ordered them to turn her over to biological father, Dusten Brown, in January 2011, citing the Indian Child Welfare Act. In June, after the Capobiancos appealed, the U.S. Supreme Court said Brown was not entitled to custody of Veronica based on ICWA.

The Capobiancos adoption of the girl was finalized in South Carolina on July 31.

Transfer of custody to the couple was to happen almost two weeks ago, but Veronica remains in Oklahoma and Brown faces felony custodial interference charges in South Carolina while he tries to fight for custody through Oklahoma and tribal courts.

Several people lit candles and sang Amazing Grace for 3-year-old Veronica in Centennial Park.

Supporters at the vigil said her adoptive parents have not been treated well since their arrival last week in Oklahoma.

"Everywhere the Capobiancos have gone. They've been met with hostility -- that's fine, people are entitled to their own opinion," Shively said. "But there are a lot of us out here that feel terrible,"

Shively said the message is not just about one family it's all the families involved in the custody battle.

Dave from Tulsa said, "even though people may have not been birthed to somebody doesn't mean they don't love them and care for them, so I think they care just as much as anybody else."

Dave said he's an adoptive parent and can see the struggles the Browns and the Capobiancos are going through.

"I think it's been slanted towards the one side -- everybody needs to know both sides," Dave said.

08/17/2013 Related Story: 'Baby Veronica' Protesters Assemble In Downtown Tulsa

Shively says she wants the "Oklahoma Standard" brought back to this debate and wants some Oklahomans to stop treating the Capobiancos as monsters.

"That's not the Oklahoma I grew up in. That's not the Oklahoma that I know. That's not the Oklahoma that was here you know after the tornado," Shively said.

People showing support for Veronica's biological father Dusten Brown plan to rally at the State Capitol Monday at noon.

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