exposing the dark side of adoption
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Tom Howlett

The Dallas Morning News

October 8, 1986

A woman testified Tuesday in the sentencing portion of the trial of a Dallas lawyer accused of purchasing a child that her signature was forged on records giving up the rights to her child after she changed her mind about giving up the child.

A jury in state District Judge Gerry Meier's court convicted Dallas lawyer Robert I. Kingsley on Friday of the illegal purchase of the baby boy of 24-year-old Lynne Marie Breland of Dallas, who received more than $2,000 in financial support during her pregnancy in exchange for the child.

The sale or purchase of a child is a third-degree felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Kingsley and his wife, Mary Zoe Kingsley, both face two child-purchase charges that have not yet been to trial.

In consecutive days of testimony this week, adults involved in four other adoption cases have told the jury of their similar experiences with Kingsley and his wife.

Robin Leanne Clark, 24, testified on Tuesday that her signature was forged on papers prepared by Kingsley giving up the rights to her child in June 1985.

Ms. Clark, who said she accepted payments from the Kingsleys before and after the birth, said she informed the Kingsleys after the birth that she wanted to keep the child, but failed to keep the child.

"I didn't even get to see her,' Ms. Clark said.

Another woman, Betty Jo Elliott, 24, testified that the Kingsleys provided her during her pregnancy with an apartment near their East Dallas office after she approached them in February 1985 about giving up her baby.

In payments totaling more than $2,100, the Kingsleys also paid for gasoline, food, cabs and car repairs during her pregnancy, said Ms. Elliott, who did not give up her son after changing her mind at the hospital.

1986 Oct 8