Apparently agreeing to a motion filed by the couple, Judge Scott Johansen issued an order Monday that he “hereby disqualifies himself from this case and refers all pending matters to the Presiding Judge.”
Johansen cited (but did not produce) research that says children “do better when they are raised by heterosexual couples” when he ordered that the one-year-old child be removed from her foster parents’ home within seven days. He has since put a stay on that order in response to widespread criticism, including from his state’s Republican governor, and set “a date in December for a hearing to determine the child’s best interests.”
Troy Williams, the executive director of the group, said, “We applaud Judge Johansen for recusing himself from this case. LGBT parents love and adore their children with as much devotion as our heterosexual counterparts. Sexual orientation should never be a barrier to raising a loving family.”
Presumably Utah has a non-asshole family court judge who can now take a fresh look at this case.