Parents Who Gave Children Nazi-Inspired Names Fighting to Regain Custody

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Rich Schultz / AP

New Jersey parents who gave their children controversial names say that a court found them not guilty of child abuse, though they are still waiting for their kids to be returned.

Heath and Deborah Campbell, of Holland Township, N.J., vaulted to public notoriety in 2008 when Deborah’s request for a birthday cake with her son Adolf Hitler’s name written in icing was denied by the local ShopRite.  In January 2009, upon allegations of abuse and incompetent parenting, Adolf, along with siblings JoyceLynn Aryan Nation and Honszlynn Hinler Jeannie, were taken into protective custody by the state.  The children have been living in foster care ever since.

(MORE: The Crisis of Foster Care)

The Campbells say that last month they were cleared by New Jersey’s Family Court of any charges of abuse, and maintain that their children were taken away solely because of their given names.  New Jersey court officials have not issued any comment.

In August 2010, an appeals court found that there was evidence of domestic violence in the household, which the Campbells have denied (despite a gag order intended to prevent both sides from speaking out to the press).  Both parents are unemployed and are said to suffer from unnamed physical and mental disabilities.

Though they picketed outside the child services office this week, the Campbells told NBC 10 that they are hoping to have their children home by early December.  “They beg to come home all of the time,” Deborah stated.

Whether or not the kids’ names themselves constitute abuse, NewsFeed thinks it’s far from reasonable for the Campbells to saddle their unwitting children with such disturbing monikers. They’re not going to win any points for their parenting skills on that one, from the courts or anyone else.

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Allison Berry is a contributor at TIME.  You can continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.