Silas v. Brown, 20210

Decision Date21 April 1976
Docket NumberNo. 20210,20210
Citation224 S.E.2d 672,266 S.C. 505
CourtSouth Carolina Supreme Court
PartiesWanda Trushelle SILAS, Appellant, v. Eleanor BROWN, Respondent.

Stringer & Stringer, Charleston, for appellant.

C. D. Hopkins, Jr., North Charleston, for respondent.

LEWIS, Chief Justice.

This appeal is from an order of the lower court setting aside an adoption decree.

It appears that Dan Silas and Earline Stewart Silas became the adoptive parents of the minor appellant (Wanda Trushelle Silas) under a decree of the court, dated January 30, 1968, to which respondent, the minor's natural mother consented.

After the death of the adoptive parents in November 1974, Edward and Letha Davis, collateral kin of the Silases, assumed custody of the minor. Thereafter, on January 10, 1975, respondent instituted an action for custody of the child, resulting in a decree awarding custody to Edward and Letha Davis. This decree was dated March 4, 1975. While the court recited the family situation of the litigants in that action, it is apparent that respondent's petition for custody was denied primarily on the basis that the prior adoption decree had the effect of completely terminating her parental rights to the child and that it would be for the best interest of the child to remain with Edward and Letha Davis who assumed custody after the death of the adoptive parents.

After her unsuccessful action to gain custody of the minor, respondent (the natural mother) brought the present action in March 1975 to set aside the 1968 adoption decree on the ground that her consent thereto had been obtained through fraud. After a hearing, the lower court set aside the adoption decree and restored to respondent all parental rights to her child, the appellant herein. This appeal is by the guardian ad litem of the minor from that decree.

The appeal is upon the single exception that the lower court 'erred in permitting the introduction of testimony concerning issues previously litigated in the earlier custody dispute, since the doctrine of res judicata or estoppel should have been prevented such introduction.' This exception is too general to be considered.

In addition to the general terms of the exception, the appeal record contains none of the testimony or trial proceedings from which the court might definitely determine what the issues were that had been 'previously litigated in the earlier custody dispute' and what testimony relating to those issues had been introduced in the...

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1 cases
  • Morris v. Beacham, 21154
    • United States
    • South Carolina Supreme Court
    • February 19, 1980 form, in essence requiring this Court to search the record. For this reason alone, the appeal should be dismissed. Silas v. Brown, 266 S.C. 505, 224 S.E.2d 672 (1976); Williams v. Regula, 266 S.C. 228, 222 S.E.2d 7 (1976). We nevertheless consider the appeal on its Appellant first except......

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