SEATTLE – An Oregon mother asked a judge Thursday to overrule a family law commissioner’s decision letting her two teenage sons live in the same house as a woman who killed her own daughters 20 years ago.
Trisha Conlon, of Silverton, Ore., had two boys with her former husband, retired Marine fighter pilot Lt. Col. John P. Cushing Jr., in the 1990s. But they split up several years ago, and John Cushing has since gotten back together with his first wife, Kristine, who was found not guilty by reason of insanity after shooting their 4- and 8-year old daughters in California’s Orange County in 1991.
Conlon has said she learned only this year that Kristine and John Cushing were once again living together at Cushing’s home on Vashon Island, south of Seattle – a fact her attorney, Todd DeVallance, argued should warrant changes to the boys’ parenting plan. But a court commissioner ruled that John and Kristine Cushing had been back together for some time, with no apparent detriment to the boys that would require the plan to be modified.
DeVallance asked King County Superior Court Judge William Downing in Seattle to allow the process of modifying the plan to go forward, noting that while Kristine Cushing’s current mental state is unknown to Conlon, at the very least it’s problematic that the boys were asked to lie to Conlon about Kristine being in the home. He also asked for an order giving Conlon temporary custody, with John Cushing being given visitation on alternate weekends and no contact from Kristine Cushing.