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Amber Alert resulting from violating Court Ordered visitation, Chicagoland connection


Sadly, an Amber Alert has been issued as the result of Leroy Illinois Police Department's request.  The missing are children: Duncan G Connolly  and Jack D Connolly.  It has been reported that the children have been allegedly abducted by their father and may now be in the Chicagoland area.  See for updates on this case and other missing children.

I was asked this morning, how can a father be accused of abducting his own children?  Well, the answer is simple.  When a parentage or divorce case is filed in Illinois, at the conclusion of the case, a Judgment is usually entered concerning the minor children involved in the matter.  The Judgment, which is entered as an enforceable Court Order, often includes a visitation or parenting schedule for the non-residential parent.  If a parent does not obey the visitation schedule, for instance by failing to return the subject minor children timely or  by concealing them from the other parent, the offending parent can be found in violation of the Court Order and must then avail themselves to the Judge and law authorities.

Visitation orders and parenting plans are usually codified by a Judge, which makes orders enforceable to the full extent the law allows.  A parent must never use self-help in such cases - it's against the law, wrongful to the other parent and harmful to the children involved!

If a non-custodial parent was to modify their visitation, they should consult an attorney, including myself at so that the appropriate request can be taken to the Judge and decided in light of what is in the best interest of the children involved.

Check for more information as new developments in this case occur.  Also, stay ahead of the curve and receive your own electronic alerts when the state issues an Amber Alert by going to the site to sign up for instant messages. Everyone in the Chicago area can do their part to keep searches ongoing to find missing children!

Be well....

Jennifer C. Smetters Esq.

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