from the Detroit Free Press:
Hard lemonade, hard price
If you watch much television, you’ve probably heard of a product called Mike’s Hard Lemonade.
And if you ask Christopher Ratte and his wife how they lost custody of their 7-year-old son, the short version is that nobody in the Ratte family watches much television.
The way police and child protection workers figure it, Ratte should have known that what a Comerica Park vendor handed over when Ratte ordered a lemonade for his boy three Saturdays ago contained alcohol, and Ratte’s ignorance justified placing young Leo in foster care until his dad got up to speed on the commercial beverage industry.
Even if, in hindsight, that decision seems a bit, um, idiotic.
The Comerica cop estimated that Leo had drunk about 12 ounces of the hard lemonade, which is 5% alcohol. But an ER resident who drew Leo’s blood less than 90 minutes after he and his father were escorted from their seats detected no trace of alcohol.“Completely normal appearing,” the resident wrote in his report, "… he is cleared to go home."
But it would be two days before the state of Michigan allowed Ratte’s wife, U-M architecture professor Claire Zimmerman, to take their son home, and nearly a week before Ratte was permitted to move back into his own house.
I can certainly understand the cop calling CPS but once the hospital said the boy was okay why put him in foster care?
I work for a social service agency and there are cases where CPS tells us their “hands are tied” because they don’t have enough evidence – which I understand.
But a case like this seems like “no harm, no foul.”