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Could Divorce Mediation in Maryland Have Averted Tragedy?

Friday, November, 4, 2011

Divorce mediation in Maryland could potentially have averted a terrible tragedy that occurred in the state this past May.  Prosecutors in Montgomery County have recently announced that they may have discovered a reason for the brutal killing of Jessica Nguyen, who was slain with a sword.  The alleged assailant was her own stepfather, David Hang.


According to prosecutors, Hang agreed in 2006 to marry Jessica's mother, an immigrant from the small Southeast Asian nation of Vietnam.  The purpose of the marriage was to assist her to attain U.S. citizen status.  At some point Hang apparently began an extra-marital relationship and wished to end his marriage, but his wife refused. 


Divorce Mediation Maryland Helps Solve Problems


Hang filed for divorce late last year but there is no indication that either he or his estranged wife considered divorce mediation as a possible solution.  Instead, the two proceeded to court where Hang's wife alleged that he had broken faith with her by committing adultery.  According to Stephen Chaikin, a prosecutor in the case, "the defendant was angry with victim Jessica Nguyen's family."


For his part, Hang denies the charges, insisting that he was a good spouse who worked hard.


Had the couple engaged the services of a mediation attorney, it is possible that they could have found a peaceful way to end their marriage.  They could even have used child custody mediation to settle any issues related to Jessica Nguyen.