A Petition to Re-unite Yalem Mammo and Arion Amanuel, her 4 year-old son. sign now

A Petition to Re-unite Yalem Mammo and Arion Amanuel, her 4 year-old son.

On September 8, 2009, Yalem Mammo appeared in front of Judge Amy Pelman to modify her custody arrangement in order to move out of state with her son Arion Amanuel. Yalem had been offered an excellent opportunity in the State of New York that would have alleviated her financial burden and benefit both mother and son. On that date the Judge rescheduled another hearing for October 6 to arrange for a child custody evaluation in connection with the move-away request. Yalem believed that she was doing the right thing by making a formal request to move to New York to the Judge that had been hearing her case.

On October 6, as scheduled, Yalem again appeared in front of Judge Pelman. At the hearing, Arions father, Robert Ray Clark, accused Yalem of being a danger to Arion and of wanting to kidnap Arion and flee with him. These accusations were baseless, and there was no evidence to suggest that Yalem would or could kidnap Arion. But instead of ordering a custody evaluation as promised, the Judge simply abandoned her own evaluation hearing schedule and suddenly accused Yalem with unfounded and unsupported allegations that Yalem wanted to kidnap her own son. The judge right there and then stripped Yalem of her parental rights, denying Arion his right to his mother, and ordered sole and legal custody to the father. The judge ignored the grief and separation anxiety that the child could endure by her orders.

Additionally, Yalem was ordered to turn Arion over to his father within 90 minutes or face arrest. When Yalem requested a 48-hour delay to help prepare Arion for this drastic change, Judge Pelman denied the request, again accusing Yalem of wanting to kidnap Arion.

Although Mr. Clark was frequently found non-credible by the court, implausibly, the judge sided with him and denied Yalems request to retain an attorney as well as denying the promised evaluation. The judge, knowing very well the precarious financial burden Yalem was in, intentionally made it very expensive for Yalem to visit her son. In short, Yalem was put on an expensive monitor visitation order, knowing Yalem could not afford to pay, simply to alienate Arion from the only parent he was raised by, loved and attached to.

Yalem has deep and extensive roots in this community and this country. She will not try to take Arion from California without proper authorization and would certainly not attempt to take him to Ethiopia. The judges accusation that Yalem and her son will live underground as fugitives, giving up their freedom, is an injustice to Yalem and Arion.

We believe that Judge Pelmans actions are not in the best interests of Arion, will cause him serious harm, and show a serious bias against Yalem, Ethiopians, and perhaps all immigrants.

Please consider the following:

1. The court had in the previous years awarded Yalem full custody of Arion. That award of full custody to Yalem was based on the evaluation and recommendation of an impartial evaluator and Arions own court-appointed attorney. Mr. Clark, has a history of mental illness, substance abuse, serious anger problems, and child endangerment and abuse with Arion and children in a previous marriage. That unclean history relating to children led the court to initially restrict Mr. Clarks contact with Arion, which could only be in the presence of a professional monitor.

2. Nothing in Mr. Clarks life had changed when Judge Pelman reversed the previous Court order and stripped Yalem of custody, granting Mr. Clark full, sole and legal custody. There had been no new evaluation showing that Mr. Clark had turned his life around and solved the old problems that had led the court to find that he was not a fit parent. And there had been no evaluation showing any problems with either Yalem or Arion during the previous years in which Yalem had full custody of Arion.

3. Indeed, Judge Pelman arbitrarily reversed the previous court order and handed Arion to Mr. Clark because Mr. Clark had said in Court that Yalem was about to flee. The Judge did not ask Mr. Clark to provide evidence of the source or how he got this information nor did she asked Mr. Clark why he thought Yalem was dangerous to Arion. Now, seriously, how could an impartial Judge reverse an earlier Court decision just on the said so of a man with the truck record of serious perjuries and certified in an earlier court-ordered evaluation of endangering and abandoning his three children?

3. Mr. Clark has never complied with the courts prior orders regarding child support, a psychological evaluation, drug testing, and parenting classes. But despite repeatedly ignoring these orders, and showing no real interest in visiting his son, Judge Pelman granted him full custody on October 6, 2009. Prior to October 6, Mr. Clark, by his own choice, had had little contact with his son, who had always lived with his mother. Mr. Clark rarely even exercised his visitation rights, yet now he has full-time custody of Arion. Before Oct 6, the fathers involvement in Arions life has been estimated to be 2\% average since Arions birth. In other words, Arion did not know him!

4. Indeed, Mr. Clarks subsequent actions show that he cannot be trusted to act in Arions best interests. He has used his new-found custody of Arion to try to persuade Yalem to reconcile with him by stalking her at her church, and contacting her Priests, family and friends -- hoping that Yalems deep love of Arion, and deep pain at her separation from Arion, will force her to put aside her own best judgment and resume a relationship with Mr. Clark.

5. During the course of the custody hearing, Yalem attempted to replace Judge Pelman when she believed the judges previous actions showed bias. Judge Pelman remarked on this angrily when she stripped Yalem of custody of Arion on October 6, 2009.

6. There is no evidence whatsoever to suggest that Yalem would flee with her son to Ethiopia or anywhere else. About the only reason for the Judges agreement with Mr. Clark that Yalem is likely to flee is that Yalem is an immigrant. This kind of reasoning places all immigrant parents at risk of being accused of possible kidnapping during custody disputes. And that line of reasoning about immigrants is absurdly unfair, potentially antisocial and purely irresponsible.

We are friends and family of Yalem Mammo and her four-year-old son Arion Amanuel. We have seen that Yalem is a fit, dedicated, and loving mother. She has consistently put Arions needs before her own. Yalem has raised Arion without any support, financial or otherwise, from Arions father. We know the deep bond that Arion has with his mother, who has always put her son first in her life. We have seen that Arion has been a happy, healthy, and a well-cared-for child. We know that Yalem will not endanger Arion.

Further, we know that Ethiopian-Americans as both immigrants and people of color face significant challenges in this country, despite all of the opportunities it offers. For people who did not grow up in America and were not educated in American schools, the court system can be both scary and confusing. Yet, in spite of that, Yalem has shown nothing but respect and patience for our court system as she has tried to do the right thing for Arion in a custody battle created by Mr. Clarks vindictive actions. Unfortunately, we believe that the system has failed her in this case.

Therefore, we, as Ethiopian-Americans and others, in Greater Los Angeles as well as across the U.S. have signed this petition supporting the return of Arion to his mothers custody.

Thank you.

Friends and Family of Yalem Mammo and Arion Amanuel.

Say no to Injustice
Petition: We, the undersigned, are asking for an immediate investigation into returning Arion to his mothers custody before irreparable damage is done to Arion. Arion is a small child and extremely attached to his loving mother. The court has put an artificial barrier between this little boy and his loving mother. And we believe the justice system has simply been unjust to Arion and Yalem, his mother. For the sake of fairness and humanity, we demand, indeed we implore, that mother and son be re-united NOW!

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Goal reached !
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Latest Signatures

  • 19 December 2015200. Paul B
    Plz reunite the mother with the child. godblessss.
  • 17 December 2015199. Wal Y
    I support this petition
  • 10 December 2015198. David R
    I support this petition
  • 18 November 2015197. Sidona T
    I support this petition
  • 09 November 2015196. Addis B
    Please this 4 year-old mom Yalem Mammo is riget person for here child
  • 09 October 2015195. Karola C
    i belive Mammo is a great Mther and deserve her child back
  • 15 September 2015194. Dr Larrycocoaw
    I support this petition
  • 12 September 2015193. Dakota K
    I support this petition
  • 01 September 2015192. Bekele K
    I support this petition
  • 28 August 2015191. Danielle P
    I support this petition
  • 31 July 2015190. Peregrine M
    I support this petition
  • 06 July 2015189. Joanna L
    Mr. Clark is an unfit parents, Arion must be returned to his mother and that judge removed!!
  • 19 June 2015188. John Vanh
    I have known Yalem since 2002. She has high personal standards. Great love of people and family. Children are very special to Yalem. We have conversations about Yalem life. Yalem openly shares, her feelings, emtions, thoughts, ideas. Open to suggestions.
  • 11 June 2015187. Aden B
    I support this petition
  • 31 May 2015186. Nasima Landry
    I support this petition
  • 07 May 2015185. Mary Annh
    She has the right to be re-united with her son and obtain custody of him.
  • 06 May 2015184. Dagim W
    I support this petition
  • 23 April 2015183. Fanta H
    Truly utter travesty and unwarranted. No consideration given to the welfare of a minor child.
  • 19 April 2015182. Selam A
    I support this petition
  • 14 April 2015181. Carla D
    It's outrageous that such a good loving mother has been separeted from her son.
  • 03 April 2015180. Anteneh M
    yalem is a wonderful mother, please reunite Arion with his mother. I have witnessed her unconditional love to her son and their mother and son bonding. I don't think it's a good idea to take her son away from her, and I don't believe the judge decission i
  • 24 March 2015179. Seblwongel A
    Please re-unite Mother and Son!!
  • 23 March 2015178. Laila K
    Yalem is a fit and responsible mother who loves her son dearly.
  • 09 March 2015177. Andinet W
    I support this petition
  • 27 February 2015176. Lloyd S
    I support this petition
  • 24 February 2015175. Gerta D
    I support this petition
  • 17 February 2015174. Mulat S
    I support this petition

browse all the signatures

Christi FrenchBy:
Business and CompaniesIn:
Petition target:
U.S. Congress


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