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Justice Gans http://nycourts.law.com/CourtDocumentViewer.asp?view=Document&docID=44399 IN RESPONSE to petitioner father’s application seeking custody of the unmarried parties’ child, respondent mother cross-petitioned for custody based on allegations of domestic violence by petitioner. Upon review of the parties’ history together, the court, citing Eschbach v. Eschbach, considered petitioner to be “the less fit parent” and ruled that awarding sole custody of the child to respondent mother was in the child’s best interest as evaluated on a gender neutral basis. The court awarded the petitioner visitation for alternate weekends. In reaching its conclusion, the court found – in addition to noting petitioner’s subjection of respondent mother to domination and control, including physical and psychological abuse – that since the parties’ separation respondent had stabilized her own life and that of her child, and that the child’s stuttering and aggressiveness had abated. The court also noted that a change in the child’s living situation would likely be detrimental to him.

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