What Happened to Michelle in Forest Hills?

Three years after Mazoltuv Borukhova was convicted of murdering her husband, what is the fate of their six-year-old daughter?
  1. The Queens Family Courthouse on Jamaica Avenue—built eight years ago to replace a rundown former library that the Family Court had occupied for three decades—reflects the change that has taken place in public architecture during the past fifty years. Public buildings are no longer designed to be impressive but to be pleasant. Entering the courthouse’s five-story atrium and stepping onto its escalator, a visitor may have the momentary illusion of being carried to the lingerie floor of a department store rather than to a courtroom where her children will be taken away from her. The corridors outside the courtrooms where people sit and wait for hearings to begin have a similar atmosphere of euphemism. With their elegant floor-to-ceiling windows and handsome wood benches arranged in facing pairs, they evoke well-endowed university libraries and conference centers. They seem entirely unconnected to the little hell of family court.

    During the three years I attended hearings at the Queens ...

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