Mother says ex-judge cheating child support system
Not paying to provide for your children can be a crime. But we found out not every child support case is the same. On the Oklahoma Department of Human Services Child Support Most Wanted list there are parents listed who owe as little as a few thousand dollars to ones that owe more than $100,000 in unpaid child support.
We found a case in Kay County that's not included on the state's list. It is the case of a former judge who right now owes $15,000 in unpaid child support.
The former judge is Lee Stout and he has been the subject of past Fox 25 Investigations. We first met him after he bounced a check for his child support payments. After other stories and multiple judicial complaints Stout was allowed to step down from the bench. When he lost the job, he stopped paying one of his ex-wives.
"It cheats my children is what happens," said Amy Marchesoni who is raising Stout's sons. "I think that he should want to help provide those opportunities to my children."
We tried to talk to Stout, but he sped away when we went by his home. We found him at his law office where he is a practicing attorney in Newkirk. He declined to talk on camera, saying he didn't want to embarrass his children.
Stout did agree to talk with us on the record as long as his comments were not recorded. He told us his children are well taken care of and since losing his judgeship his salary has suffered. It's why he filed a motion to modify child support more than a year ago, but even if that is granted it would still mean a bill of $7,500.
"I'm not opposed to reducing it, I realize he lost his job," Marchesoni told Fox 25, "But I think he can pay something."
Marchesoni's attorney is Scott Loftis. He's an attorney who has been critical of Stout in the past, but says he believes the former judge should be able to provide something for his children. "I can think of no reason, he seems to be an abled body and minded person who can earn an income practicing law."
Loftis says by not paying child support the taxpayers suffer. When Stout lost his job as a judge he lost his insurance that covered his boys. The children are now on Sooner Care, a taxpayer funded health insurance program.
Stout said he had made a recent payment, but it was not what his current court-ordered amount required. He blames his ex-wife for delaying the court case and not providing financial records his attorney has requested. He says he wants to get back to paying a fair amount.
Because of Stout's former position, the case has been moved out of Kay County. Marchesoni says she wants to case resolved. "I would hope that he would just start paying something, regularly every month and contributing because I would like to save for the boys' college funds."