Missing girl returned to father's custody

Saturday July 21, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- Three-year-old Alexis Hodges was placed in her father’s custody on Friday morning at Central Berkshire District Court, according to police.

The girl’s mother, Amanda Babcock, 25, was served the Family and Probate Court papers when she showed up at District Court on another matter around 11:15 a.m.

Babcock turned the child over to her estranged boyfriend who had been searching for his daughter for the last two weeks. Hodges was awarded full custody of his daughter after a Family and Probate Court hearing on July 12.

"I’m a lot better now [that my daughter is back]," the father, Michael Hodges, 25, of Pittsfield, told The Eagle on Friday. "I was in shock."

Hodges said Alexis was doing well. They spent the rest of the day together at Hodges’ mother’s house, he said.

No criminal charges were filed against Babcock since she hadn’t been formally served the paperwork alerting her she was no longer Amanda’s custodian. Babcock did not attend the July 12 hearing at which Michael Hodges was awarded custody.

Hodges said he hadn’t seen his daughter since July 6.

On Wednesday, the Pittsfield Police issued an advisory seeking the whereabouts of Alexis, Babcock and her mother’s boyfriend, Jeffrey Kucka, 20, of Pittsfield.

Hodges said he hadn’t been told where Babcock and his daughter had been before they showed up at the courthouse on Friday.

Pittsfield Police Capt. John Mullin said he wasn’t able to release that information to The Eagle because no criminal charges had been filed in the case.


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