The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) on
Friday filed a complaint against the Utah juvenile court judge who
ordered a baby girl removed from her lesbian foster parents and
placed with a heterosexual couple.
In ordering the couple to give up the
baby, Judge Scott Johansen reportedly said that “kids in homosexual
homes don't do as well as they do in heterosexual homes.”
On Friday, Johansen rescinded his order
at the request of the state, which means married couple April
Hoagland and Beckie Peirce will keep the baby, but child welfare
officials said that that could change after a custody hearing
scheduled for Friday, December 4.
“If Johansen ordered the child be
remove because of the couple's sexual orientation, it would be a
clear violation of the Utah Code of Judicial Conduct, which expressly
forbids it,” HRC said in a blog post.
HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow
called on the Utah Judicial Conduct Commission to hold Johansen
“It is unconscionable that any judge
would let bias interfere with determining the true best interest of a
child and we strongly encourage the commission to take appropriate
action to hold this judge accountable and to affirm that personal
bias has no place in judicial decisions in Utah,” she
The couple told CBS News that they
believe Johansen, a bishop in the Mormon Church, imposed his
religious beliefs in deciding their case. The Mormon Church is
strongly opposed to same-sex marriage.