WANGUGI v. WANGUGI was a 2000 Ohio appellate court
decision.  Joseph Wangugi and Marion Wangugi were
divorced in 1995.  In 1997, Marion Wangugi was awarded
physical custody.  In February 1999, Joseph Wangugi filed a
motion to modify custody of the parties' two children.  He
alleged that a change of circumstances had occurred and
that the children's best interests would be served by
modifying the custody order.  Marion Wangugi, by then a
Jehovah's Witness, had decided that she would remove the
children from Catholic school, which they had attended
since kindergarten.  After interviewing both children, the
lower court decided to modify custody to allow the son to
live with Joseph Wangugi.  The son did not want to attend
public school, and Joseph Wangugi, a Catholic, agreed that
he would enroll the son in a Catholic school in his locale.   
The court noted that although Aaron enjoys a loving
relationship with both his mother and father, the son
expressed his desire to live with his father.  Additionally,
several years had passed since the original custody award
and the son had matured and developed common interests
with his father.  No change in custody was made with
respect to the daughter.

Marion Wangugi argued that the trial court inappropriately
considered her WatchTower religious faith when
considering whether to modify the custody order.  This
appellate court disagreed, stating:  "... we find no evidence
that the trial court considered appellant's religion or
religious practices when determining the custody
modification issue.  We acknowledge that the magistrate's
report contained accurate statements of fact
regarding the parties' religious practices. The report did not,
however, rely upon the parties' religious differences when
resolving the custody modification issue. In fact, the
magistrate's report explicitly indicates that neither child
expressed any concerns with either parent's religious
practice and that neither child displayed any adverse
effects from appellant's religious beliefs."
Jehovah's Witnesses Lose in Court-Often....