Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Seale v. Thompson

Court of Appeals of Mississippi

June 25, 2019

THOMAS JARROD SEALE APPELLANT
v.
WILLIAM GRADY THOMPSON JR. APPELLEE

          DATE OF JUDGMENT: 10/25/2017

          KEMPER COUNTY CHANCERY COURT HON. EDWARD C. FENWICK JUDGE.

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: KENNETH DUSTIN MARKHAM

          ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: CARRIE A. JOURDAN

          BEFORE CARLTON, P.J., GREENLEE AND McCARTY, JJ.

          MCCARTY, J.

         ¶1. In this custody dispute between the natural father and the maternal grandfather, the chancery court granted custody to the grandfather, finding that the grandfather overcame the natural-parent presumption and that the grandfather's custody served the best interest of the minor children. Finding no error, we affirm.

         FACTS

         ¶2. Thomas Jarrod Seale (Jarrod) and Haley Thompson Seale had two boys, one born in 2009 and the other in 2010. Jarrod and Haley separated in early 2010, and Haley and the oldest son moved in with her father, William Grady Thompson (Grady). Haley and Jarrod's other son was born later that year. Haley and Jarrod divorced. Because of his ongoing drug addiction Jarrod's visitation with his sons was limited to supervised visits.

         ¶3. In June 2013, Haley died in Georgia while undergoing treatment for cancer. At the time, Haley and the boys were living with her mother, Melanie Lindsey. Melanie had temporary custody of the boys for several months after Haley's death. Grady was ultimately awarded temporary custody, and Jarrod was awarded visitation. Both boys have lived with Grady for the majority of their lives.

         ¶4. Jarrod had been previously convicted of felonies-two in 2010 in Arkansas for drug- related crimes, [1] and another in 2012 in Mississippi for obtaining a controlled substance by fraud. He served five years of probation for the Arkansas convictions and approximately nine months in jail for the Mississippi conviction.[2] Prior to his Mississippi conviction, Jarrod had voluntarily entered a drug rehabilitation center. He was indicted on the prescription-fraud charge prior to finishing the required fourteen-month stay at the center, but after serving his sentence, Jarrod returned to the rehabilitation center to finish the program.

         ¶5. Because of his drug abuse and incarceration, Jarrod was an absent father for the first several years of his sons' lives. He saw them intermittently, and only began paying child support in August 2014 after being ordered to do so by the chancery court. At that point Jarrod owed $13, 760 in child support, so the chancery court ordered him to pay an additional $140 per month to cover the back child support.

         ¶6. There was some confusion during trial about whether Jarrod's child-support payments were current. Both Grady and Jarrod stated that he was current in his monthly child-support payments, but he had not paid off the arrearage. Grady further testified that Jarrod's child-support payments had consistently been late. For example, Lisa Seale, Jarrod's current wife, made six over-due monthly payments within one month's time right before trial.

         ¶7. Grady testified that Jarrod began exercising visitation with the boys after the 2014 order and continued to do so until the hearing.[3] Grady stated that the boys loved ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.