Daniel Baldwin's estranged wife has hit back at reports child welfare officials removed the couple's children over fears for their safety, insisting she agreed to let the kids stay at a friend's home on a "voluntary basis" so she could "regroup".
Representatives from the Department of Human Services (DHS) in Oregon took the couple's two young daughters away from the family home on Wednesday night (19Oct11). The kids were removed from Joanne's guardianship and placed under the care of a family friend until the actor returned from shooting a film.
Baldwin released a statement saying the "DHS is sighting multiple potential improprieties and the children's welfare as reasons for this action."
However, Joanne insists the stress of the publicity surrounding the breakdown of her marriage made her agree with officials that her children should stay with friends and their father until Sunday (23Oct11).
She says in a statement to E! Online, "In response to the inflammatory claims made against me, yet again, I would like to say that there has not been a forced removal of my children from my home.
"The DHS has been involved with our case because of the original false restraint that had been filed against me back in July. I have been under a lot of duress during all of the media coverage, defamation of character, and Daniel being out of town for weeks on end. After expressing myself to the DHS, they asked me, and I agreed on a voluntary basis, if the girls should stay with our friends for a couple of days so I could have some time to regroup. There has been no custody awarded to any party as of yet, until we go to court. The girls are at my home spending time with their father, until I return on Sunday."
The incident took place on the same day it emerged the Baldwins' divorce is back on. Joanne filed papers earlier this month (Oct11), weeks after the actor agreed to dismiss his initial petition in August (11).
In the divorce papers, Joanne requested sole custody of their two girls and demanded $4,000 -per-month in child support. While filing for divorce for the first time in July (11), Baldwin also requested a restraining order against Joanne.
The couple wed in 2007.