HOUSTON -- Houston hand surgery clinic owner Michael Glyn Brown, who was arrested Tuesday and accused of beating his fourth wife, voluntarily forfeited his parental rights to two of his children from a prior marriage on Friday.
The two children, ages 9 and 10, appeared along with three of Brown's other daughters and current wife in TV commercials for the Brown Hand Center, his Houston-based chain of carpal tunnel treatment clinics, which also has locations in Phoenix, Dallas, Austin and Las Vegas.
In the ad, Brown says he trains surgeons at his centers personally to provide the same level of treatment that he provides for his own family and ends with the now 10-year-old sitting on his lap and saying, "Daddy's baby girl."
Brown's third wife, Darlina Barone, will take custody of the children and remain with them in Colorado, said Barone's current husband.
In 2002, Brown, 53, pleaded guilty to assaulting Barone with a bed post while she was seven months pregnant, according to court records. He was fined $1,500 and given 10 years of supervised probation.
Barone was granted custody of their children with her husband being allowed third-party supervised visitation after their divorce in 2001, according to court records.
The agreement was modified twice: in 2005 to require continuous third-party supervision between the hours of 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., and in 2006 after a mediated settlement agreement to require no supervision, according to court records.
In 2008, Barone filed for sole custody and to revoke Brown's visitation privileges.
Barone told a Harris County judge that her ex-husband had become increasingly erratic and violent, that a history of drug tests showed cocaine and Xanax in his system and resulted in the revocation of his medical license, and that she knew Brown to have driven with their children in the car after drinking and that the children were afraid to visit his home, according to court documents.
Barone's attorney was happy to deliver the news that her ordeal was nearing its end.
"This should have happened two years ago," said Barone's attorney, David Brown. "It's a good day for her."
Attorneys from both sides deliberated in private for more than an hour before telling state District Judge Bonnie Hellums that they had reached the agreement to take away Brown's rights to see his children or act as their guardian.
On Tuesday, Brown was arrested on a felony assault charge, accused of assaulting his fourth wife, Rachel Brown, on Aug. 13. He is free on $40,000 bail but was not present during the hearing.
His attorney declined to make any statements, saying only that they are looking to bring the issue to a close.
"We're working to finalize the family issue," his attorney Katherine Scardino said.