It’s time for Prosper Ortega and her son Ari to be given back their life together. This is our mission.
We know that domestic violence leaves horrible scars, and many of us know that playing fair in child custody cases doesn’t happen very often. In Prosper’s case, where domestic violence and custody litigation have merged, the situation is even more precarious as it caused a young mother and her baby to be separated and to suffer even more abuse. There is much we can do, though, to level the playing field and right the wrongs. Reunification and recovery – full recovery – are the objectives for this family.
Prosper’s situation – the fact that she is having to fight in the Fulton County Superior Court in Atlanta, Georgia, to bring her little boy home – is more shocking and compelling than the average child custody case. The shock of this story starts with the fact that Prosper was held captive and beaten to within an inch of her life by her former husband. Fortunately, Prosper’s mother realized her daughter was being isolated, that something was terribly wrong; she went to the house where Prosper was being brutalized and rescued her and the baby. Then, the criminal justice system worked as intended and Aaron Uchitel will remain in prison for many years.
Prosper underwent many surgeries between 2016 and 2018; during the time when she was unable to have her baby with her, she relied on others to care for him. One couple took over her child’s care full time in 2017, and while Prosper was in a wheelchair and medicated, they asked her to sign what was described to her as a “guardianship” agreement to protect the couple and give them standing to do what was needed for the little boy. Prosper found out much later that this couple used her signature to represent to a judge that Prosper had given up all rights as a parent, misrepresenting the agreement – when Prosper was absent, meaning not included in the court hearing and not copied on communications with Aaron Uchitel’s father who was also involved. This couple told the court that the injured mother, Prosper Ortega, wanted them to have sole legal and physical custody of Ari. You might imagine Prosper’s shock when she was told by the couple months later that they were not returning Ari to her – and that she had no standing, no claim to him. Since Prosper was not included in the hearing when the judge was presented with a document to change legal custody of the child, she had no way of knowing that what the couple was doing was designed to take away her custodial rights to raise her own child. It was impossible to defend herself.
In Prosper’s story, her child is being deprived of his real mommy, except for a few hours here and there, hours she has to spend several hundred dollars on just to be afforded a little time with him. This expense of having to pay for visitation with her son is one of the reasons for the fundraiser linked here. Stay tuned on social media to see what has been going on as Prosper’s family spends thousands of dollars to be close to Ari, fighting for the right to protect him and to raise him. We believe that with your support, with awareness and people showing up for them, justice will become reality in bringing them back together as a family.
As this story unfolds for viewers around the globe, we’ll see the proof of the injustice and also what needs to happen to restore justice. Thank you for being here and for showing up for Prosper and Ari and for Navigating Justice.
The beginning of the story and a brief overview are shown here on this YouTube video. Check it out and let us know what you think.
If you have questions or trouble with any of the links, please contact us here.
Another way to make a tax-deductible donation to Navigating Justice’s work on this case and others like is by holding your smart phone over this QR code, which will take you directly to our donation page.