A Call to Action: Upholding Nunu Sung’s Parental Rights

Well, dear reader, today marks the day we’ve been anxiously waiting for … and my heart is very heavy right now. Judge Robert J. Anderson ruled Nunu Sung “Unfit.” I am heartbroken. Nunu, I’d imagine, is devastated.

This ruling does not pose an end to the parental rights hearing; it closes the door on phase one, to determine whether Nunu is “fit,” and transitions the trial to phase two: to determine what is in the “best interest” for Joshua.

As far as I can tell, there are two options available as an outcome for the “best interest” phase

(1)   Terminate Nunu’s parental rights altogether

(2)   Uphold Nunu’s parental rights

If the first occurs, Nunu will lose her son. The foster family will move to adopt him. If the second occurs, the court will develop a care plan for transitioning Joshua from foster care to an alternate setting until Nunu is deemed ready to assume parental responsibility. Proceedings will continue and Judge Anderson will decide on Thursday, January 19, whether to uphold or deny Nunu’s parental rights.

What I want to address is this: I believe Judge Anderson has already determined within himself the outcome of this hearing. As such, he cannot provide an objective ruling of what is in the best interest for Joshua.

As I sat in the waiting room outside Juvenile Court, I overheard members of the media confirming details of the Judge’s decision. They mentioned to one another that Judge Anderson remarked that he plans to terminate Sung’s parental rights in the next phase, and explore other options for the placement of Joshua.

While I am aware that in juvenile proceedings, once a parent is declared “Unfit” by the court it is pretty much inevitable parental rights will be terminated, my concern is for the lack of fairness (and objectivity) Judge Anderson will grant the defense team in this next phase since he has already declared his intent to terminate Nunu’s parental rights.

A viable option which must be considered by Judge Anderson in this next phase is to deem Nunu unfit, yet still uphold her parental rights. Doing so involves any combination of the following:

  • piecing together a care plan of steps for Nunu to accomplish before receiving Joshua
  • locating next-of-kin within Nunu’s family to raise Joshua

What I am asking of you, dear reader, is this: please take 30 seconds of your time to email Judge Robert Anderson. Ask Judge Anderson to uphold Nunu’s parental rights. Remind him of his obligation to deliberate fairly, withholding his personal bias. Judge Anderson is set to rule on Thursday, January 19. Two days from today. Time is short. Speak up now.

You may copy the simple note provided below or use your own words. Be kind.

Please send your email to: Judge Robert J. Anderson randerson@ija.org and rja@dupageco.org

Subject line: Uphold Nunu’s Parental Rights

18th District, Circuit Court Judge,

Honorable Judge Robert J. Anderson

I ask that you uphold Ms. Sung’s parental rights in the “best interest” phase of her trial.

Ms. Sung has demonstrated great care, sacrifice, and effort to develop and maintain a relationship with her son—a commitment she maintains even in prison by writing to him, weekly. Ms. Sung made a mistake two-and-a-half years ago, has accepted responsibility, and devoted every day of her life since to reuniting with her son, Joshua.

Ms. Sung’s consistent efforts prove she is indeed fit, and capable, to love and raise her son.

While Ms. Sung has honored the terms of her plea agreement in serving time in prison, I ask that you hold the prosecution accountable to those same terms which stipulate that no party will attempt to terminate her parental rights.

 In Support of Nunu Sung,

First Name,

City, State

Nunu Sung with her son. Joshua

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Note: The original edition of this post included a statement that a member of the prosecution team approached the media asking them to strike Judge Anderson’s comments regarding intent to dismiss Nunu’s parental rights from their notes. I have since been corrected and have deleted this statement from this post. I do apologize for the inaccuracy.
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13 comments

  1. I wonder how does the court define “unfit”? I’ve only recently begun following this case and based on all that has been shared, Nunu seems to be a more “fit” parent than many parents I see. Speaking as a parent, we all make mistakes that we wish we could reverse, obviously some mistakes, like Nunu’s can be seen as being a “bigger” mistake but ultimately we all fail at some point. Yet by God’s grace and mercy, we hopefully learn and grow from our mistakes and our children reap the benefit. I’m

    1. I’m praying that Judge Anderson and the court system will extend the grace and mercy towards Nunu that our God, Almighty has already extended towards her.

    2. Corey,

      In the first phase of this trial, the Judge only needed to uphold ONE count (of several) brought forth by the prosecution in order for Nunu to be declared “unfit.” Which makes no sense to me. One. This explains why the prosecution focused much of their time and energy on the circumstances the night of his birth. Be that as it may, the Judge does not, however, have to terminate Nunu’s parental rights in the second phase of determining what is in the best interest of her son.

      i agree with you that as God’s grace covers us we do not have to be defined or pigeonholed by our mistakes. I still stand firm that all of Nunu’s actions and efforts to maintain a relationship with her son prove she in indeed fit to raise him.

      ~Su

  2. Thanks for sharing and championing Nunu’s and Joshua’s cause! Letters have been sent! It is rulings like this that make me question the ‘justice” part of our Justice system. Praying that Judge Anderson is truly upholding the law as he has been sworn to do in his position rather than his own or anyone else’s personal agenda.

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