A California toddler found dead earlier this week was apparently the centerpiece of a tumultuous custody battle between his parents prior to his death.
Merced Sun-Star reports that according to Merced County Superior Court records, Steven and Sarah Weir were battling over full custody of their son, 2-year-old John. Sarah pointed out that John missed medical appointments while with this father but it ultimately was not enough for her to gain full custody.
A judge ordered joint custody between the parents and recommended mediation. The pair were then to share parenting duties each week, then meet each other for a custody exchange at a McDonald’s restaurant in Fresno.
It wasn’t long, however, before issues began to surface with the agreement. Along with arguments between the parents, Steven Weir reportedly refused to hand over their son on June 29. He also claimed he “rescued” his son and denied claims of missed medical appointments.
“I rescued my son from her. I have gone very far out of my way to get John’s medical needs taken care of.”
In July, Sarah Weir said she found a large knot on John’s head. Steve Weir reportedly replied that the boy would be fine with “more Tylenol.”
The couple’s next hearing was scheduled for October 1, but last week, Steve Weir failed to return John to his mother. An AMBER Alert was subsequently issued.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, police found two bodies on Sunday in a remote camping area close to the Sand Flat Campground in Tuolumne County. The area is around two hours from where Steve Weir abducted the child. Authorities said father and son were found inside Steve Weir’s Hyundai Elantra.
Although authorities haven’t confirmed the identities, family members told ABC 23 that the bodies were Steven and John Weir. It’s still unclear how the pair died.
The story is developing. Check back for further details.
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[Feature Photo: Steve and John Weir/Handout]