Mass. Agrees to Review Harmony Montgomery Custody Hearing
A Massachusetts family court's handling of the custody of Harmony Montgomery will be reviewed per a request from New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu.
In a letter to Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Kimberly Budd, Sununu said that the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (MA DCF) requested in 2018 that New Hampshire DCYF conduct a home study of Adam and his then-wife Kayla Montgomery, to determine custody of Harmony Montgomery.
While NH DCYF was awaiting information to comply with the request, a family court in Lawrence abruptly awarded custody to the couple, Sununu said.
"It is unclear why the Massachusetts courts moved so quickly with this permanent placement prior to the completion of the home study. Why would the Massachusetts court choose to place custody of Harmony with this horrible individual? What caused such a fateful decision," Sununu asked in his letter.
In a letter dated Jan. 21 and released Thursday, Budd agreed to the investigation.
"I share your view that we need to learn as much as we can about what happened. To that end, the Massachusetts Trial Court is cooperating fully with the Massachusetts Office of the Child Advocate's review of this tragedy," Budd wrote.
Investigators on Monday narrowed down the time when 7-year-old Harmony Montgomery was last seen at her Manchester home, as her stepmother entered a not guilty plea to welfare fraud charges.
Attorney General John M. Formella said that the girl was last seen between approximately November 28 and December 10, 2019 after her father Adam Montgomery, stepmother Kayla Montgomery, their two common children and Harmony were evicted from their home at 77 Guilford Street in Manchester. Police conducted a search of the property at the beginning of January.