Gothamist reported last week that the New Jersey parents who named their son Adolf Hitler have lost custody of the boy and his sisters JoyceLynn Aryan Nation and Honszlyn Hinler Jeannie. (Yes, those are their real names.) The children are to be permanently removed from their home, not as a result of the unfortunate historical names they were given, but due to their father’s violent predisposition. One could argue, though, that naming your son Adolf Hitler is an act of child abuse in and of itself.
The Campbell family rose to public attention back in late 2008, when a ShopRite employee refused to inscribe Adolph’s Nazi nomenclature on his birthday cake. “NJ’s Division of Youth and Family Services removed Adolf and his sisters from their parents custody a month later,” according to Gothamist.
The children, ages 2, 3 and 4, have been in foster care since January 2009. It is unclear where they will be placed now that they have been severed from their father, Heath Campbell, a “Nazi fan and Holocaust denier who decorates his home with swastikas.” (Let’s hope little baby Ahmadinejad is not on the way.)
The Campbell’s lost custody of their children after the DYFS appealed the decision of a lower court judge, who suggested that “it was a stretch to say the father’s prior relationship was enough to demonstrate abuse and neglect with respect to his current family,” despite the fact that his ex-wife held a restraining order against him and he’d been convicted of “making terroristic threats,” the New Jersey Star-Ledger reports.
The appellate court said in its decision Thursday, “A defendant’s history of prior domestic violence is vital in assessing the risk of harm to an alleged victim of domestic violence or other abuse.” While the children remain in the safe care of the DYFS, their mother, Deborah Campbell, refuses to leave her husband, despite having earlier sent a letter to authorities saying, “If anything may happened to me please do an altops on me b/c My husband has done something to me. Im afread that he might hurt my children if they are keeped in his care.” She has since denied the document’s veracity, claiming “she had written it only as an outlet for her anger.” In court, she depicted her husband as a “loving, caring father who had never hurt her or the children.”