Town of Provo, Utah

Irish teenager in Utah who alleged abuse forced to return home


Town of Provo, Utah

An Irish teenager in Utah who accused her mother of physical abuse has been forced to return home to Ireland.

Melita Carter the teenager’s older half sister told the Provo Daily Hearld that her sister was taken out of her seminary class at Timview High School on Wednesday. Carter said that Sharon got on an early flight Thursday morning, Dublin bound.

Her older sister Melita and her husband Chas are in the process of seeking legal guardianship over the 14 year old.  Carter alleges that the teen was physically abused by her mother Caroline Cowan when she lived in Ireland. She told the Provo Daily Hearld that their mother had “hit and kicked the girl and thrown things at her.”

The news was first publicized in Ireland when Caroline Cowan went on radio show in Dublin to plead for the safe return of her young daughter. The mother, a former Mormon was quoted as saying she was concerned that Mormons in Utah where trying to brainwash the girl.

Shannon arrived in Provo at the beginning of the summer on vacation to visit her older sister. When  Shannon disclosed details of the alleged abuse to Carter she tried to do what she could legally to allow her sister to remain in the US.

"I tried contacting the police department in Ireland. They pretty much said that because it was a phone call it could be a prank phone call. They didn't believe me. I had to go to Ireland to make a statement and they had to have my signature," says Carter.

Carter managed to obtain a temporary protective order against their Mother. However unbeknownst to Carter a judge dismissed the protective order earlier this week and issued Provo police officers a court order to pick up the girl on Wednesday.

Carter wasn’t allowed to see Shannon or say goodbye but they teenager did phone her sister from the toilet of a diner using a cell phone she borrowed from a lady. Carter said Shannon was afraid of what was going to happen to her on her return to Dublin.

"Me and my husband have done everything we can think of doing. We've done it the right way. We could have taken Shannon and we could have ran and hide. But we done everything the right way and just feel like it got thrown back in our face," Carter says. "If I had the money right now I'd be in Ireland. My next step is to try and come up with money and try to fight this."


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