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Custody hearing postponed in Maddox case - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

Custody hearing postponed in Maddox case

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TYLER COUNTY -

The hearing won't pick back up until possibly April, but testimony continued this week in the case involving the custody of a 5-year-old girl whose father and stepmother were shot to death last month outside a Colmesneil Church.

Nathan and Krystal Maddox were shot and killed Jan. 18 outside of Mount Carmel Baptist Church after a supervised visitation with Nathan's daughter, Madison. Letha Westfall and her husband Paul Westfall are the parents of Nathan's ex-wife, and Madison's mother, Kristen Westfall. The Westfalls had custody of Madison at the time, but attorneys say Nathan was in the middle of a custody battle. According to them, he was close to winning. Kristin had handed custody over to her parents due to previous arrests for controlled substances.

Several witnesses were called to stand in the hearing including Janet Jones, the Department of Family and Protective Services investigator who removed Madison from the Westfall's home shortly after the shooting.

Jones said she felt it was in the child's best interest to be in a safe and undisclosed home, since authorities have not identified a shooter. She said there were also drugs found and other unsafe living environments, like access to weapons and sewage too close to the home.

Two Texas Rangers also testified, one of them confirming a baggie that was found at the Westfall's residence tested positive for methamphetamines.

Jones also mentioned a drug test taken recently by Kristen Westfall saying she passed the hair follicle portion but failed the urine test. She said to her knowledge that means the drugs were taken recently, but wasn't sure if Kristen was on any prescription medication.

Those in support of the Maddox family wore neon green "Help Me Save My Daughter" shirts. That's the name of the online campaign started by Nathan Maddox while he was trying to get custody of Madison.

Attorneys for the Westfall's argued that the child should not have been taken from the only home she's ever known, even though no arrests have been made in the murder of her dad and step-mom.

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