Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Jeffrey Gillen said Friday that Heather Hironimus can avoid going to jail if she will sign the consent form for her four-year-old son’s circumcision. The mother from West Boynton, Florida, had signed a parenting plan in 2012 authorizing her son’s circumcision, but she claims that she later learned more about circumcision and does not believe it is the right choice for her son. She says that her son’s circumcision is no longer medically necessary and involves unnecessary risks.
Originally, the boy’s circumcision was planned, because he was diagnosed with phimosis, a condition that prevents the retraction of the foreskin. According to NHS, phimosis is normal in babies and toddlers.
“Most uncircumcised baby boys have a foreskin that won’t pull back (retract) because it’s still attached to the glans. This is perfectly normal for about the first two to six years. By around the age of two, the foreskin should start to separate naturally from the glans.”
The four-year-old’s father still wants him to have a circumcision, because it’s the “normal thing to do,” according to a past Inquisitr article.
Friday, Dennis Nebus, the boy’s father, told the judge that his son and Hironimus are nowhere to be found. There are concerns that she may have fled with their son to avoid his court ordered circumcision. Hironimus was ordered to appear in court on Friday with the boy, but did not appear. According to Nebus, the boy’s mother has kept their son hidden since February 20, according to the Sun Sentinel.
Nebus had been making new arrangements to have his son’s foreskin removed, but after pressure from activists for genital autonomy, a doctor previously scheduled to perform the boy’s circumcision reportedly backed out. Genital autonomy activists have even petitioned the White House to stop the forced circumcision of the four-year-old boy.
The boy’s mother has until Tuesday afternoon to appear in the courtroom or the judge will sign an arrest warrant. She must bring the boy with her to the courtroom. The judge said that if she complies and also signs the consent form for the boy’s circumcision, she can avoid incarceration.
“I will allow her to avoid incarceration or get out of jail if she signs the consent to the procedure.”
The judge said he will suspend the woman’s passport and prevent the possibility that her son will be able to get one. The judge also stated that the media is no longer to use the boy’s name. A gag order had already been issued for the mother. She was not permitted to speak to the media about the circumcision and was not permitted to tell her son that she disagreed with the court-ordered circumcision. The case has gained national attention and even Russell Crowe has weighed in on the matter, according to New Times.
The Florida woman can escape contempt charges and imprisonment if she signs the consent paperwork that is needed to schedule the circumcision and shows up at the court with her son on time. Many of the woman’s supporters claim that consent given under duress would make the legal document not valid.
— Rob Kiser (@rckiser) March 7, 2015
What do you think of allowing the mother to avoid jail time if she agrees to sign the consent form for her son’s circumcision?
[Photo via Pixabay]