Mother fights to change Michigan law, stop sex offender father from seeing 6-year-old daughter

Wayne County man charged with soliciting sex from girls wants visitation with daughter

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WAYNE COUNTY, Mich. – A battle brewing Monday in a Wayne County Court, over child visitation, could have an impact across the state.

The case involves a registered sex offender who wants visitation rights with his 6-year-old daughter.

The mother is fighting visitation, saying current Michigan law gives the sex offender rights, while denying rights to her daughter.

Amy Carns wants to stop her ex-husband Donald from getting custody and visitation of their daughter.

He is the biological father who also pled no-contest to soliciting sex from underage girls over the internet.

"If you're a convicted sex offender you can't even go into a school, you can't go into sporting events, you cannot go anywhere near where other people's children are present." said Carns.

But, Michigan law is not as clear when the sex offender is a parent.

Carns argues that as a school principal she can protect other children from contact with sex offenders, but she legally can't shield her own daughter.

"My daughter could be forced to sit in a room with a man that committed his crimes and tried to have sex with minor children for almost three years," she said. Carns wants to change the law.

Amy Carns

~Amy Carns in court Monday~

The Children's Protection Act, now in the Michigan Senate, would eliminate some of the special consideration a biological parent gets when that parent is also a sex offender.

"I did not become a mother to involve my daughter in one-on-one contact repeatedly with someone who solicited children for sex, not at all. I protect children, not just mine but children every day in my school building form sex offenders entering, steeping foot in my school so they are that safe at all times," said Carns.

Father Donald Carns was asked if he wanted to tell his side of the story, but he declined to speak with Local 4.

The visitation issue in this case has not been decided. The judge wanted to talk with the child before making a ruling.

The Children's Protection Act is currently in the Senate pending a vote, if passed it would move to the House.

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You can watch Steve weekends as anchor of Local 4 News at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. and reporting throughout the week. Steve is a veteran journalist who has worked at Local 4 since 1995.