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Bailey v. Bailey

Supreme Court of Delaware

March 13, 2014

MATTHEW BAILEY, Respondent Below-Appellant,
v.
KRYSTAL BAILEY, Petitioner Below-Appellee

Submitted March 12, 2014

Case Closed April 1, 2014.

Editorial Note:

This decision has been designated as "Table of Decisions Without Published Opinions." in the Atlantic Reporter.

Court Below: Family Court of the State of Delaware in and for Kent County. File No. CK13-01938. Petition No. 13-16219.

Before STRINE, Chief Justice, HOLLAND, and JACOBS, Justices.

OPINION

Leo E. Strine, Jr., Chief Justice

ORDER

This 13th day of March 2014, upon consideration of the briefs of the parties and the record in this case, it appears to the Court that:

(1) The respondent-appellant, Matthew Bailey, Jr. (the " Husband" ), filed an appeal from the Family Court's July 8 and September 11, 2013 orders denying his request to reopen the Family Court's May 28, 2013 order granting the motion of petitioner-appellee Krystal Bailey (the " Wife" ) for a protection from abuse (" PFA" ) order against the Husband.[1] We find no merit to the appeal. Accordingly, we affirm.

(2) The record before us reflects that, on May 22, 2013, the Wife filed a motion for entry of a PFA order against the Husband after he tried to gain access to her house using a crowbar. A hearing was held on May 28, 2013, at which the Husband, the Wife, and other witnesses testified and were cross-examined and video evidence was presented. At the close of the hearing, a Family Court Commissioner granted the PFA order against the Husband.

(3) Sometime after the hearing, the Husband subpoenaed a recording of the 911 call made by the Wife during the incident. The Husband received a copy of the recording on June 10, 2013. On June 21, 2013, the Husband filed a Motion to Reopen the PFA Order based on Family Court Rule 60(b)(2) and (3), claiming that the 911 recording was newly discovered evidence and that it showed misrepresentation or other misconduct by the Wife during her testimony at the hearing about her knowledge of the Husband's motives for being at her house and whether she felt threatened by the Husband.

(4) On July 8, 2013, the Family Court Commissioner denied the Husband's motion. On September 11, 2013, a Family Court Judge affirmed the Commissioner's order based on unrebutted testimony at the hearing that (i) the Husband went to the house with his father and brother, (ii) they had video cameras and were recording the incident, (iii) they also brought a crowbar and a sledgehammer, and (iv) the Wife's mother witnessed the Husband trying to force open an exterior door with the crowbar.[2] Based on this record, the Family Court Judge determined that the Husband's behavior was " alarming and abusive."

(5) This appeal by the Husband followed. In his appeal, the Husband claims that the Family Court erred and abused its discretion when it ...


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