Biological Father Of 'Baby Veronica,' Dusten Brown, Drops Legal Fight
TULSA, Oklahoma - An Oklahoma father choked back tears, as he called off the fight for his daughter.
It was an emotional end to a custody battle between little Veronica's biological dad and her adoptive parents in South Carolina.
Dusten Brown and the Cherokee Nation are dropping all ongoing litigation and asked Veronica's adoptive parents for mercy in allowing Brown to see the 4-year-old little girl.
In a news conference lasting only nine minutes, a four-year custody battle over Dusten Brown's biological daughter and the adoptive daughter of Matt and Melanie Capobianco came to a stunning end.
"I love her too much to continue to have her in the spotlight," Brown said.
Dusten Brown and his attorneys said they did everything in their power for Brown to keep custody of his daughter, Veronica, but realizing the legal battle was lost, they won't file any further appeals and will drop all pending custody litigation in Oklahoma and Cherokee Courts.
"Never ever for one second...never ever for one second doubt how much I love you, how hard I fought for you," Brown said, addressing Veronica.
That fight has lasted since Veronica's birth.
Matt and Melanie Capobianco, Veronica's adoptive parents in South Carolina, lost custody to Brown based on a South Carolina Supreme Court ruling citing the Indian Child Welfare Act, which is intended to keep Native American children with their families.
But the U.S. Supreme Court ruled the act doesn't apply to Brown's case.
After lengthy legal battles, Brown handed over custody of Veronica two and a half weeks ago.
"Going into her room and seeing all of her toys and her not there playing with them, is the worst pain I have ever felt," Brown said.
Brown said it's no longer fair for Veronica to be caught in the middle of a custody fight. He asked the Capobiancos to allow him to be a part of her life and to see and speak to her on a regular basis.
"I know that the Capobiancos love Veronica very much and will provide her with a good home. It is my greatest hope that we can work together on a solution that is best for Veronica," he said.
Brown's attorneys also asked the South Carolina couple for mercy, and to do everything in their power to make sure a criminal charge of custodial interference against Brown in South Carolina is dismissed.
"It is something that is within your control, and we ask that you listen to your heart and get rid of those proceedings," said Cherokee Nation Assistant Attorney General Chrissi Nimmo.
Nimmo said the best thing for Veronica is for litigation to end and for healing to begin.
Brown had this message for his daughter: "I miss you more than words can express, you'll always be my little girl, my little princess and I will always love you until the day I die."
Brown and his attorneys are also asking for the Capobiancos to keep a commitment to keeping Veronica connected to her Cherokee culture.