Broward Adoption Judge's Former Foster Son, Accused of Stalking Him, Heads to Court

Categories: Crime, Crime
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Update 1/22: For the latest details on the case, read our updated story with information from Harper and Bowman.


Eighteen-year-old Charles Monroe Harper will be in court this morning to answer charges of stalking his ex-foster father, John Bowman, in December.

According to a police report, Harper stood across the street from Bowman's residence in Plantation, called the house "from a bogus number," and told Bowman to step out of the house. Harper was with his half-brother, and both were arrested for stalking (a domestic violence charge.) The charges resulted in a restraining order against Harper.

Bowman is a judge in the Broward County Courthouse and has presided over hundreds of adoption cases from his bench.

According to JAABlog, "over the years, [Bowman] and his assistant attorney general wife [Claudette Bowman] have also opened their home to DCF kids." In Harper's case, it hasn't ended well, and it's a stark reminder that after the paperwork goes through, adoptions and foster care are often volatile processes. 

According to testimony from Claudette Bowman, Harper had threatened to kill her and her husband.

Miami-Dade Judge Richard Feder was brought in to move the case forward, to avoid a conflict of interest on the part of Broward judges. An arraignment was scheduled for 8:30 this morning. It's possible the case won't be a case after all: JAABlog has it that the judge initially found "no probable cause," and there are no charges listed on the clerk's website.

We have not been able to get in touch with Bowman, and Department of Children and Families spokesman Mark Riordan says his office doesn't have any information about the case. Harper is now listed as living in Miami.

Here's the report from the arresting officer's probable-cause affidavit: 

I responded to [the address] reference Harper and Gibbs causing a disturbance in front of the victim's house. Officers stopped the parties approximately 100 feet from the house. I met with the victim who stated his ex-foster son Harper was calling his house from a bogus number telling the victim to step out. The victim observed the parties across the street from his residence on the phone. The victim has documented several incidents involving Harper but no injunction was active. Harper nor Gibbs could explain their purpose for being around the victim's house. Both parties were arrested, transported.

We'll update soon on whether the case is going to move forward.

Update 9:57 a.m.: The state has not yet decided whether to press charges against Harper, who looks likely to swap out his public defender for private counsel if it goes forward. Judge Ian Richards was momentarily perplexed to learn the circumstances of the case -- the victim being a sitting judge. Judge Jay Hurley recused himself from an earlier hearing and brought in a judge from Miami-Dade, but Richards may remain: "I would start to consider withdrawing myself, though I don't really know Judge Bowman," Richards told the public defender.


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4 comments
Dorotha Wolfe
Dorotha Wolfe

I pray for all the abuse children and that Charles has his day in court to tell all, and these people get what they have coming to them... Dorotha

sparkylivewire
sparkylivewire

This is my son your talking about and for what reason would a Judge have from keeping him from his sister and brother?Why would he meaning the Judge put my son in Eckhard Camp and visit him and have him brought to a location to take him to places like the zoo? If you think this makes sense to you than your eyes are closed. How many more have to be abused and lied to used and than thrown out like trash because they are teens? He never met his brother till he was an adult and never got to be around his sister. These types of people should not be on the bench nor working for children and families, because they took this job to protect against the very things they are doing. This young man was stripped and made to run around naked as punishment for being a child, then was made to sleep in the bed of a grown man for what reason. What business does a grown man have touching a child in private places? Having this done to him has played a part in his life that caused a lot of mental confusion. This is a matter that should be handled now. While this was going on this young man did not have a chance to tell anyone, if this wife spent so much time at the spa why did she as a foster mother not be there to see the wrong unless the marriage is a cover up for what was really going on. Come on man get real we are here to stop child abuse and help their minds grow by showing the right way to go no matter what this is not something that should be covered up. Was he really licenced as a foster parent?We know his wife worked for DCF but is she really up holding her job? How many more children has this happened too? What was the reason the judge closed the case so fast and had restranded all these kids contact? There are many questions for this man and his wife.Flag

sparkylivewire
sparkylivewire

This is my son your talking about and for what reason would a Judge have from keeping him from his sister and brother?Why would he meaning the Judge put my son in Eckhard Camp and visit him and have him brought to a location to take him to places like the zoo? If you think this makes sense to you than your eyes are closed. How many more have to be abused and lied to used and than thrown out like trash because they are teens? He never met his brother till he was an adult and never got to be around his sister. These types of people should not be on the bench nor working for children and families, because they took this job to protect against the very things they are doing. This young man was stripped and made to run around naked as punishment for being a child, then was made to sleep in the bed of a grown man for what reason. What business does a grown man have touching a child in private places? Having this done to him has played a part in his life that caused a lot of mental confusion. This is a matter that should be handled now. While this was going on this young man did not have a chance to tell anyone, if this wife spent so much time at the spa why did she as a foster mother not be there to see the wrong unless the marriage is a cover up for what was really going on. Come on man get real we are here to stop child abuse and help their minds grow by showing the right way to go no matter what this is not something that should be covered up. Was he really licenced as a foster parent?We know his wife worked for DCF but is she really up holding her job? How many more children has this happened too? What was the reason the judge closed the case so fast and had restranded all these kids contact? There are many questions for this man and his wife.Flag

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