Heather Hironimus, the mother who took her 4-year-old child and fled from authorities to avoid the boy’s circumcision, has been found and put in jail.
According to the Sun Sentinel, Hironimus has been in hiding for several months now, all due to an ongoing dispute over the child’s circumcision. After a vicious custody battle, the mother lost the right to prevent her son’s circumcision to the boy’s father, Dennis Nebus. Following their divorce, a “parenting plan” was put in place in 2012 that allowed Nebus to have his wish and perform the circumcision. Originally, the mother agreed with the plan, but later realized she was “scared to death” of the circumcision operation.
Hironimus sued her ex-husband in April of last year, using passages from the Bible to make her case against circumcision. Her primary source was a passage that reads, “except when performed for strictly therapeutic medical reasons, directly intended amputations, mutilations, and sterilizations performed on innocent persons are against the moral law.” A judge ruled in favor of the father, granting him permission for the circumcision in 2014. Upset with the ruling, the mother took the boy into hiding.
A warrant for the arrest of Heather Hironimus was issued after the mother failed to appear in court to sign consent forms allowing for her son’s circumcision. She spent two months hiding from police until she was found in Broward, Colorado. According to Local 10, she was brought into Broward County Jail at 6 p.m. yesterday (Thursday) and charged with contempt.
Circuit Judge Jeffrey Gillen called Heather Hironimus “reprehensible” for fleeing with her child to avoid the circumcision. By running away, she garnered national attention, which the judge said made her son’s disputed circumcision an “object of curiosity and worse.”
The father wanted the circumcision for his son for health reasons. He claimed that he noticed the boy kept urinating on his leg, which he thought the circumcision would resolve. According to WebMD, there are some medical benefits to circumcision, but there are also some risks. Many doctors believe the benefits are not substantial enough to justify the circumcision operation, especially since the procedure increases the risk of injury and complication the older the person gets. Circumcision performed on a 4-year-old boy is significantly riskier than an infant.
Should the mother be put in jail for trying to stop her son’s circumcision?
For more on circumcision, read about the controversy over the orthodox Jewish tradition of using “suction” during circumcision.
[Images credit: CBS News]