Kelly (Hawse) Usherwood: The Ultimate Energizer Bunny of Parental Alienation

Dr. Leon Koziol, Director

Parenting Rights Institute

Administrator’s Note:

Dr. Leon Koziol will be making a presentation before a Blue Ribbon Panel of New York’s newly installed governor, Kathy Hochul, on the subject of abusive forensic evaluation orders used in family court to cause severe parental alienation. The post below, the last of a four part series beginning with the Brad Pitt-Angelina Jolie divorce, will be a part of that presentation. You can also get a free insight on Leon’s new book from its website at http://www.whistleblowerinparis.com. We will keep you updated on all of our reform efforts.

With all the crises facing society today, you would think that a custodial parent, Kelly (Hawse) Usherwood might finally relent with her parent alienation tactics carried out against a dedicated dad now for a period of more than 15 years. There are others like her abusing our courts to achieve illicit objectives having nothing to do with any child’s best interests. But this one remains off the charts and an ideal poster villain for family law reform.

As the unfortunate victim of this spiteful energizer bunny, never reported for child abuse or neglect, never been found to be an unfit parent, and the victim of numerous family offense petitions thrown out for lack of evidence, I have been forced into the undeserved role of crusader behind such reform. This role was made more pressing when I was targeted for my exposure of corruption within this lucrative system of child control.

You would think that lawyers in robes would have the requisite sophistication to detect parent alienation, a custody tactic often used to increase child support, punish an adversary or replace a targeted parent with a preferred substitute. My case had all these combined, but it was also laced with an agenda for suppressing my public criticisms. More than 40 trial level jurists were disqualified from my originally uncontested divorce, a national record by most accounts.

This makes it an ideal case for a federal investigation because it has elements common to most others and features a support agency’s scheme to conceal $45,500 in support payments during a 2018 violation hearing. That resulted in a secret bulletin and a near death outcome. Because these agencies and family courts in general derive billions of dollars in federal incentive grants based on the number and size of support orders they satisfy, this concealment constituted a clear abuse of federal funds in addition to a violation of human rights.

A maliciously protracted ordeal notwithstanding warnings which the mother of my children ignored, it was originally benefitted by several years of uneventful co-parenting. That benefit was gradually transformed into a destructive process. In 2016, despite having all her prior offense petitions dismissed, this custodial parent and ex-wife, now Kelly Usherwood, filed yet another petition to preserve a substitute father relationship in favor of a childless lover. I never yielded to her evil agenda and was therefore compelled to defend.

I was fortunate to get a state supreme court judge (trial judge in New York) to sign an order against family judge, Daniel King, who was presiding over this petition. He had previously suspended my parenting time without legitimate grounds after I brought testimony against him at the state’s Moreland Commission on Public Corruption. He then imposed a gag order, disguised as a protection order on my website, http://www.leonkoziol.com, thereby triggering First Amendment issues.

Within weeks of serving that order upon him, Judge King cancelled his hearing on this petition, dismissed it without any appearances, removed his own gag order, and then disqualified himself altogether from ongoing proceedings. Even a biased observer could conclude that this was all orchestrated behind closed doors, further supported by dismissal of my own challenge to the gag order based on those sudden events. It had the effect of avoiding public clamor with a protest set to occur one week later at the state supreme court building.

My defense to the family court petition was not only based on First Amendment but also a fraudulent notice of my daughters’ relocation to the substitute father’s residence (her purported g-mail notice which lacked the required “l” character). The location of one’s children is central to any parent-child relationship, but Kelly Hawse-Koziol had become possessed by an evil that even I could not detect or comprehend. Indeed, even convicts are granted the rights of knowing the locations of their offspring.

This relocation fraud was one of many tactics employed without accountability to erase me from my daughters’ lives. And it occurred without any remedy or compensation in my precedent-seeking actions dismissed in federal and state courts. The painful loss of father-daughter experiences is too extensive to relate here. You would think that the alienator might have learned a vital lesson, but she is at it again with the concealment of a new residence believed to be that of her latest substitute, Lou Usherwood, her spouse since May, 2021.

What possible gain could this obsessed alienator have today for concealing my daughters’ residence given the fact that my youngest turned 18 years of age only days ago? Even the new spouse, a father too, should have sufficient logic to conclude that this residence is easily discoverable and that the ex-mother-in-law was employed for a substitute address simply to enrage the targeted parent. After all, there has never been an incident at the alienator’s home, as he can personally verify, to support the false narrative that dad is somehow dangerous.

This will only renew conflict that has long subsided, conflict that seems to excite the alienator no matter how demented or satanic it may be. It calls for precedent to include those who assist alienators as co-conspirators of civil rights violations. As a victim on many fronts, one would think that all this has to stop at some point especially after the hospitalization which the combined impacts caused me in December, 2020. But this alienator is utterly obsessed with her agenda, one that caused an unprecedented request for an exorcism by a third party in 2011.

My ordeal is likely familiar to countless victims of contrived parent-child alienations. The current, antiquated custody system pits moms against dads and parents against the state to such an extreme that it can make monsters of otherwise normal parents. In my recently published book, Whistleblower in Paris, at pg. 189, I cite only a few examples of the carnage:

It is a (custody) regime that can turn a parent into a brutal killer overnight. Recent examples include a mother who was convicted of murdering her two-year old daughter rather than comply with a custody change order that was not timely enforced. She was also convicted of attacking police with two knives when they arrived. [1] Another featured an NYPD officer charged with murdering his autistic eight-year old son in January, 2020 by leaving him overnight in a freezing garage. [2] In 2019, a mother purchased a gun overnight and killed her estranged husband and two children. [3] According to an investigative report, 725 such deaths were suppressed by a state agency. [4]


[1]   ‘You Are In A Special Category Of Evil’: Mamaroneck Mom Who Killed 2-Year-Old Daughter Sentenced to 25

      Years To Life, newyork.cbslocal.com, October 31, 2019

[2]   Mongelli & Musumeci, Michael Valva, NYPD cop charged in son’s murder, tears up in court as 911 call played,

     New York Post, May 11, 2021

[3]   Mother Charged with murders of husband, 2 children in Tacony, ABC 7 (Philadelphia), October 18, 2019

[4]   Chris Bragg, State agency suppressed 725 child death reports over decade, Times Union, October 13, 2020

In Chapter 2 of my book, I elaborate a bit more on this carnage:

I thought about the dead and walking dead, victims of murder, suicide, premature death and those awaiting justice that would never come. I thought about Investigator Joe Longo, a father of four so traumatized after support court that he used a common kitchen knife to leave them with no parents for life.[1] The predators just kept pounding him with confiscated weapons, protection orders, support intercepts and career damage without considering any breaking points.

I thought about Thomas Ball, product of an overzealous child protection agency who sat down one day on the steps of a New Hampshire courthouse to protest family court abuse. [2] But this was no sit-in, no occupy court mission. He poured gas over his head and burned himself alive. I cringed at the extreme pain he must have suffered before and during this holocaust. In the end, there was no national coverage, no court reforms, they merely washed his ashes into the sewer.

I thought about Alec Baldwin, one of the few victims who did attract national coverage. During his high profile divorce with Kim Bassinger, he dutifully complied with forensic evaluation orders, hoping to quickly exit this matrix as he described it. However, protracted deliberations in California’s court system forced him to expose dysfunction among judges, lawyers, evaluators and others. His goal ultimately was to prevent unsuspecting parents from becoming victims. But in the end, he nearly became the ultimate victim. His own words have long been forgotten:  

My family and closest friends were still there for me, but even some of them had grown perplexed by and weary of the assault on my parental rights that seemed to have no end. On the deepest level, my situation now seemed hopeless to me as well. I had gone to sleep many nights doubting that I had the desire to face these problems another day… Driving up the Taconic Parkway, heading to an inn in the Berkshire Mountains, I began to think about what little known town I would repair to in order to commit suicide. What semi-remote Massachusetts state park could I hike deep into and shoot myself? What bed-and-breakfast could I check into and overdose there? On Long Island, I thought about the old Jeep I owned and the emissions it gave off. When I returned to New York, the thought of jumping out of the window of my apartment was with me every night for weeks. [3]

I thought about so many victims I encountered during my crusade against this killing machine, a mom who drove her children into the Hudson River, the Iraq war veteran who attempted suicide only to be saved through my intervention, a member of our parenting rights organization who hung himself from a tree in his back yard, the mom who called me daily for help until vanishing altogether, and the dad I dissuaded from a kidnapping of his own children now hiding in Israel. As I revisited the interview with that Florida talk show host, an aggrieved dad who took his life a few years later, the roar of a jet engine shook me from my daze.


[1]  Pearce v Longo, 766 F. Supp.2d 367 (NDNY 2011)

[2]  Mark Arsenault, Dad leaves clues to his desperation, boston.com, July 10, 2011

[3]   Alec Baldwin, A Promise to Ourselves, St. Martin’s Press, at pg. 183 (2008)

How a Parent Alienator was Recommended for an Exorcism in Family Court

Dr. Leon Koziol, Director

Parenting Rights Institute

Yes it did happen, an alienating parent, Kelly Hawse, was so evil in her quest to replace a father for money and status that she was recommended for an exorcism in New York Family Court. It happened in my own divorce case in 2011, the same year that my custody judge was accused and later banned from the same family court after admitting to sexual abuse of his handicapped five-year old niece, Bryan Hedges, 20 NY3d 677 (2013).

Although it may have appeared extreme at the time, this recommendation, made in a third-party affidavit, has been justified repeatedly ever since. I have spent more than 30 years in these courts, 23 as an accomplished trial attorney, 15 as an alienated “non-custodial parent,” and I have yet to see anything like the evil which has matured here. How could a biological mother work so ferociously and so long to destroy exemplary father-daughter relationships?

Syndrome, Symptom or Satanism: How Can Parent-Child Alienation Be Rationally Explained?

This exorcism event may not stand for any legal precedent, but its evolution could help victims better understand parental alienation. A growing outcome of an antiquated child custody system, it has proven to have no remedy or loss compensation in either federal or state court. Many observers, qualified or not, have focused on a complex analysis, but as you should discover here, parent alienation is really quite simple and begging for overdue reforms.

Parent Alienation Syndrome

The needless destruction of parent-child relationships in divorce and family courts was recognized early on by a psychiatrist, Dr. Richard Gardner, during the 1980s. He gave it the name Parent Alienation Syndrome (PAS), and despite its popular recognition, this syndrome was never accepted by Gardner’s profession. Meanwhile, hundreds of conditions in its DSM manuals continue to be employed in custody evaluations for insurance purposes.

Parent Alienation Symptom

Similarly, the same courts have refused to give this horrific condition any meaningful acceptance. To answer this abdication of duty, I have asserted in my reports and legal briefs that parental alienation is neither a psychological condition nor a syndrome of any kind but a symptom of a dysfunctional process focused more on lawyer profits and court revenues than the so-called “best interests” of our children.

Parental alienation is, very simply, the by-product of a toxic and adversarial court system. Our federal government rewards it by the number and size of support orders it issues. Parents are therefore required to name a “custodial parent” as a condition for a lawful separation or divorce not because it advances any child interests but because it yields untold profits and billions of dollars in performance grants under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act.

This yield sabotages overdue reforms while creating an inherent or systemic bias among jurists who are given the financial incentive to manufacture as many “custodial parents” as possible while ruling against their “noncustodial” counterparts. This, in turn, incites emotional outrage among the inferior parents who rightfully feel discriminated and abused by a decisional process that they are not properly acclimated to by their legal representatives.

Such grants are not justified when this two-caste framework is replaced by a co-parenting one where parents are treated equally under our Constitution. This would produce vast harm to to a giant bureaucracy built on support collections and court battles. It also explains why shared parenting legislation is opposed by special interests and bar associations across the country. Such opposition is mindless given the collateral damage which the outdated system produces.

The arbitrary custody mandate can transform a cooperative child rearing environment into a barbaric contest reminiscent of the Roman Coliseum. Over time, it can create monsters among parents and children alike. In my newly published book, Whistleblower in Paris, I document the carnage with numerous examples of child homicide (i.e. Gabriella Boyd), suicide attempts (Alec Baldwin), murder-suicides (Investigator Joe Longo) and even a self-immolation (Thomas Ball). You can obtain a free insight on the book’s website at http://www.whistleblowerinparis.com.

Parent Alienation Cult

Parental alienation has elevated over the years in the custody playbook to take on the character of a cult in extreme cases. That cult is bent on exploiting custodial authority for ulterior purposes such as child support increases, punishment of an adversary, or replacement of a targeted parent with a preferred substitute. My case had all three but was also laced with an agenda for suppressing my public criticisms of an increasingly corrupt court system.

This agenda empowered my ex-wife, Kelly Hawse, to abuse her custodial authority to levels that exceeded rational and moral bounds. She nurtured an evil to such a degree as to permanently alienate me from my daughters. Once benefited by the standard 85% of time spent with my children under the antiquated system, she was able to orchestrate a false narrative that had me wrongfully defined as an uncaring weekend warrior and “deadbeat” dad.

The two weekends a month typically assigned to noncustodial parents are woefully inadequate to maintain meaningful parent-child relationships. Such arrangements can easily isolate that parent, reduce him or her to an inferior role model, frustrate involvement in school events and create a disconnect even among cooperating parents. But when a scheming alienator is involved, the harm could be much more severe and life impacting.

You would think that lawyers in robes would have the requisite sophistication to detect parental alienation especially when it is occurring before their very eyes. But in my case, the overseers were looking the other way as a means for punishing my public exposures of corruption and efforts to reform this lucrative custody system. Here is an excerpt from my book which exemplifies how brazen the alienation was against me:

To illustrate this aspect of a growing epidemic, on one occasion I was returning from a weekend with my girls at an indoor water park. As a weekend warrior, a noncustodial parent has to maximize enjoyment to offset the alienation process, and my daughters loved these excursions because we lived in snow country. The ex was busy with her anal routine of texting me whenever I was running late. It did not matter that her girls had enjoyed such a wonderful time with their dad. To the contrary, this custodial parent was likely incensed by it.

It got so anal that I texted back that I was in Rio to make up for all my deprived parenting time, my way of saying enough is enough. It was pathetically obvious that this was a facetious text as it was sent from her driveway, and she could verify the girls’ exiting my vehicle from her picture window. Nevertheless, to my utter shock, I was hauled into family court days later to defend against a show cause order limiting my geographic activity to two local counties.

Incredibly, a hearing was actually held on the Rio caper in May, 2011 with my children’s assigned lawyer (William Koslosky) questioning, quite astoundingly, whether I was truly in Rio while dropping off his “clients.” I refused to answer on “stupidity” grounds despite the judge’s directive to respond. My refusal was then used against me with our first forensic evaluations ordered of mom and dad. Supervision was later imposed. More on that under the subject ‘forensic funny farm.’

Other playbook antics included the scheduling of discretionary activities on weekends. The rationale used here was that these were extensions of school-related events that truncated my parenting time. Sometimes my entire period would be preempted by events in other states where I was remanded to observer status. Ever the schemer, this abuser would then convey privately, and contrary to court order, that I was not interested in the girls or their activities. A secret bond was established which lasted to the time when all contact had ended. Even a senile judge could discern the alienation agenda, but each one I petitioned would find a way of excusing it.

Coming Tomorrow: History Repeats Itself with a Relocation Concealment to Keep the Alienation Forever in Play

Also Note:

This author will be making a formal presentation before a Blue Ribbon Panel of New York’s newly installed governor, Kathy Hochul, on the subject of forensic evaluation abuses in family court. We will keep you posted. 


Putting a face on the parent alienator: meet Kelly Hawse-Koziol (Usherwood)

By Dr. Leon Koziol

Director, Parenting Rights Institute

Former Civil Rights Trial Attorney

Among my popular publications are those that shed light on this human rights tragedy known as parental alienation. It is the centerpiece of a nationwide epidemic promoted by greed, lawyer profits and billions of dollars in federal funds under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act. It is a gold mine for service providers, prescription drug companies and conflict predators of astounding variety, an underworld of corruption made possible by a rarely tested declaration that our domestic relations courts are acting in the so-called “best interests” of our children.

This epidemic is escalating by the day because government is failing us in its duty to safeguard our most cherished right of parenting, one that the Supreme Court has repeatedly declared to be the “oldest liberty interest protected by the Constitution,” Troxel v Granville, 530 US 57 (2000). It is failing us most horrifically by refusing to correct parental alienation which has become so silently widespread across America. Instead, more regard is given to illegals, criminals and child traffickers at our borders.

Consequently we must take a closer look at these domestic tribunals. They all seem legitimate with the decorum, perfunctory overtures, and lawyers cloaked in black robes pressing us to believe that our precious offspring are in good hands. As an alienation victim, I tested that blind trust resulting in one of my custody judges being permanently banned from the bench for sexual abuse of his handicapped, five year old niece, In re Bryan Hedges, 20 NY3d 677 (2013). Only last year another of my custody judges resigned for sexual harassment of his female clerks (Michael Hanuszczak).

Indeed, over a twelve year period of retaliation for the conscientious stand I took against my profession, more than 40 trial level jurists were removed or disqualified from my family litigation, a national record by most accounts. I did not ask for this record or so many parenting substitutes since an uncontested divorce was upended by court predators. Since 2004, they orchestrated a blood bath reminiscent of the Roman Coliseum.

After all, have you ever wondered why loving parents are forced to joust over a “custody” award or “visitation” schedule? Are not these terms more appropriate for prisons and funerals? And haven’t such archaic terms “outlived their usefulness” as a veteran judge long ago declared in the case of Webster v Ryan, 729 NYS2d 315 (Fam. Ct. Albany 2001) at fn. 1?

I did not ask for the years of daily persecution that ultimately led to my hospitalization four months ago. I did not ask for this simply to spend more time with my daughters. I did not ask for the alarming information disclosed to me anonymously and otherwise concerning my ex-wife bent on replacing me time and again with her preferred dads.

This hideous alienator, Kelly Hawse-Koziol, brings a face to this epidemic. Indeed she could become its poster parent, exemplifying the absurdity of taking a support and custody battle to an illogical extreme. After all, what did she gain by destroying the career of her children’s dad? She got the attention she craved, pleased the ones anxious to even the score for a lost case, but how did any of it benefit the girls who could have been so much better off today.

In my case, I was never given an out, constantly forced on the defensive to prove myself as the fit parent I always was. For example, through a series of family offense petitions, all thrown out for lack of evidence, and a malicious campaign for failing to give up my parenting rights, Hawse-Koziol (soon to be Hawse-Usherwood) brainwashed my girls into hating their biological father who made their existence possible.

I raised them without incident for the first ten years of their lives, sacrificed immensely to stay with them, provided over a quarter million dollars for their support, and showed them a wonderful time which would be the envy of most children. Yet today they seem content to reward me with silence, avoiding contact even while I was hospitalized during the Christmas holidays. I cannot imagine doing this to my own parents or to my ex if the shoe was on the other foot. It is a modern day evil which our courts are manufacturing daily.

Such is the face of severe parent alienation, and it warrants a federal investigation of human rights violations in addition to the rampant abuses of federal funds. It also warrants criminal prosecutions and jail time for contempt to balance the consequences that have long been applied to child support debtors. I mean, isn’t a parent-child relationship far more deserving of legal protection than money transfers that are so often abused for non-child related activity? Parental alienation also warrants a new form of lawsuit that compensates victims.

Those who join with the alienator should also be held accountable. Again, I did not ask for the reports from concerned observers that my ex-wife was at it again by soliciting a guy named Lou Usherwood to act as the father of my children. Indeed during a high school football game in 2019, her illicit agenda was confirmed when, accompanied by this latest substitute, she threatened me by text for talking to my cheerleader daughter without a proper court order.

This is “insanity on steroids” and it is becoming commonplace. But in my case it is laced with retaliation for the exercise of speech outside the courtroom and constitutional right of parenting free from excessive interference. I have never even been charged with child abuse or found guilty of unfit parenting. Yet convicted felons in prison get better “visitation” orders.

After exchanges with the ex designed to move on from this disaster last year, I took down all negative posts involving her. However, the alienator showed true colors again by continuing with her sick agenda. She is doing this despite all the precious time and advice lost between “daddy and his little girls” that can never be restored. It is an evil I have never seen before, even among some of the worst criminal defendants I have come across. Yet I continue to have no legal recourse against those who made her agenda possible due to judicial immunity.

In my 2017 book, Satan’s Docket, I document how a corrupt family court made all this possible. It is not only uniquely educational but it reveals an epic ordeal deserving of a long overdue documentary. To order a copy or respond personally to this post, feel free to contact me at our office at (315) 380-3420 or electronically at leonkoziol@gmail.com. Kindly help us overcome the censorship of this epidemic by making our vital message and this blog site viral.