“You keep playing with fire, sooner or later you’re gonna get burned,” 3rd District Juvenile Court Judge Andrew Valdez told Kingston and Heidi Mattingly On Monday.
Valdez could have issued a 30-day jail sentence but offered the alternative of working 40 hours in the next two weeks at a homeless shelter, to which Kingston agreed.
Mattingly, also known as Heidi Foster, angered Valdez during the hearing. At one point he scolded her to drop her pen, stop writing and pay attention to what he was saying.
Jail time might not be the best option for Mattingly, since she recently gave birth, said Kristin Brewer, director of the Guardian ad Litem’s Office. She recommended Mattingly undergo three hours a week of counseling for four weeks with a Division of Child and Family Services counselor.
“If you didn’t have that newborn child, I would throw you in jail today,” said Valdez, ordering her to complete the 12 hours of counseling.
In June, Valdez ruled that two daughters, ages 13 and 15, who allegedly had been threatened with beatings for getting their ears pierced, and eight siblings, had been abused and neglected by their father and their mother had been negligent in protecting them.
The contempt charges stem from incidents in March where Kingston and Mattingly directly or indirectly contacted the two teenage daughters. A protection order filed by their aunt prohibited any contact by the girls’ parents.
Kingston said his family has complied with all court orders.
“In good conscience we complied with all court orders to minimize the damage to our children,” Kingston said. “Nevertheless, historically our family has been punished whether we are guilty or not.”
The couple will be in court again Aug. 25 to face more possible penalties.
Brewer said Kingston and Mattingly violated a court order by not visiting a court-ordered psychiatrist.
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