Metro Detroit mom jailed for not vaccinating son loses primary custody

PONTIAC, Mich. (WXYZ) - The metro Detroit mother who was sentenced to seven days in jail for not vaccinating her son has now lost primary custody of him.

In court on Wednesday, a judge ruled the child's father, James Horne, will now split custody.

During most of their son's life, Horne would only see him every other weekend and a few hours on Wednesday evenings. He had custody of the child and got him vaccinated while Rebecca Bredow was in jail.

Bredow was sentenced to seven days in jail for not following a court's consent order to vaccinate her son. She immediately appealed that decision and the court found her appeal without merit.

She was released from jail on Monday after serving five of her seven days.

A friend of the court referee, after reviewing the custody battle case, recommended that both parents, Bredow and Horne, get joint custody of their son.

The recommendation will go into effect starting this weekend, but she has 21 days to appeal the friend of the court's decision. She says she will do that.

"I am an educated vaccine-choice mother and I have signed vaccine waivers and have been fully compliant with all state laws for both of my children for every school year," Bredow said before the sentencing hearing last week.

In court, she said vaccinating her son goes against all of her beliefs, saying parents have the choice to make the right decision based on their knowledge of vaccines.

"If my child was forced to be vaccinated, I couldn't bring myself to do it," she said. 

Judge Karen McDonald interrupted her plea in court saying that Bredow wasn't telling the entire truth.

"I understand you love your children, but what I don't think you understand is your son has two parents, and dad gets a say," McDonald said.

After Bredow said that she and her ex-husband agreed until recently on not vaccinating their child, the judge said that Bredow acknowledged in her own pleadings that he was up-to-date on his vaccinations when he was a year old. 

The judge went on to list a series of things Bredow did without the dad's consent, saying "it's clear to me that you don't care about orders. Even if you agree to them, which you did."

Print this article Back to Top