Lincoln Co. Grandparents Fighting To Adopt Abused Grandchildren

Tuesday, July 14th 2020, 5:41 pm
By: Aaron Brilbeck

The grandparents of twin babies who were horribly abused want to adopt them, but they said the Oklahoma Department of Human Services is standing in the way.

Melissa Corum of Prague said she’s done everything she can to get custody of her twin grandsons. She’s built a nursery in her home. She’s spent her entire life savings on lawyers. And she’s put her own son in jail. She said nothing seems to be good enough.

Every day, Melissa stares at the empty nursery she set up for her grandsons. Back in January she turned in her own son, 20-year-old Joseph Corum and his 19-year old wife Mina Arnold for child abuse. 

Investigators said the infants, who were just five weeks old at the time, both had broken bones and one had both of his little legs snapped like twigs. 

uJoseph Corem faces up to 30-years in prison. His mother said she turned her son in to protect the babies.

Related: Lincoln Co. Parents Arrested, Accused Of Abusing 5-Week-Old Twins

“It’s still, it’s mind-blowing to me and my mind doesn’t comprehend it. But this has been by the hardest thing I’ve ever had to live through,” Melissa said.

The alleged abuse happened while Joseph Corum and Mina Arnold were living at Melissa’s house.The babies are healthy now and living with foster parents. Melissa and her family can only visit them once every two weeks for an hour while she fights for custody.

“I’ve emptied my bank accounts. We’ve missed so much time at work. Just for court dates. To be able to go visit them for an hour.”

“We get to hold them and play with them and talk to them. And it’s really hard because in 60 minutes we have to turn them back over,” Great grandmother Penny Scott added. “They’re beautiful happy babies. And we just want them back.”

Melissa said she’s tapped her bank accounts fighting for custody, and it seems like she’s spinning her wheels. Her lawyer told her she shouldn’t do this interview. She said she had to.

“Because I’m desperate and I need help. And I don’t know where else to turn and I want my grandbabies back.”

News 9 reached out to DHS. They can’t comment on specific cases but they said generally speaking they do try to place children with family members unless there’s some reason they can’t.