from a district court order modifying child custody. Eighth
Judicial District Court, Family Court Division, Clark County;
Linda Marquis, Judge.
Radford J. Smith, Chartered, and Radford J. Smith, Kimberly
A. Medina, and Garima Varshney, Henderson, for Appellant.
& LoBello and John D. Jones, Las Vegas, for Respondent.
child custody proceeding, a father surreptitiously recorded
his child and ex-wife's conversations by hiding a
recording device in the child's backpack. Because neither
the child nor the mother consented to this recording, the
father's actions likely violated NRS 200.650, which
prohibits the surreptitious recording of nonconsenting
individuals' private conversations. The question
presented is whether the district court abused its discretion
by providing the recordings to a psychologist appointed by
the court to evaluate the child's welfare. We hold that
the district court properly exercised its discretion in
determining that the recordings would assist the expert in
forming her opinion. Therefore, we affirm.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
and Lyudmyla Abid divorced in 2010. Their stipulated divorce
decree awarded them joint legal and joint physical custody of
their one-year old child. In 2015, Sean moved to modify those
terms to get primary physical custody.
least two separate occasions, Sean placed a recording device
in the child's backpack as the child traveled to
Lyudmyla's home. The child and Lyudmyla were unaware of
the device, and neither consented to Sean recording their
conversations. Sean then edited the recordings, removed what
he claims to be irrelevant material, and destroyed the
originals. Claiming that the recordings demonstrated
Lyudmyla's attempts to manipulate the child, Sean moved
to admit them into evidence in the custody proceeding.
Lyudmyla objected on grounds that Sean violated NRS 200.650
in recording her and the child's private conversations.
district court found that Sean likely violated NRS 200.650
and denied Sean's motion to admit the recordings into
evidence. Nonetheless, the court provided the recordings to a
psychologist, Dr. Holland, whom the court had appointed to
interview and evaluate the child. The court permitted Dr.
Holland to consider the recordings as she formulated her
evidentiary hearing, Dr. Holland testified that
Lyudmyla's behavior was "creating confusion,
distress, and divided loyalty" in the child. She based
her opinion in part on the recordings, as well as interviews
with the child, Sean, and Lyudmyla, email and text
communications between Sean and Lyudmyla, and the
considering Dr. Holland's testimony and other evidence
presented, the district court found that, "[a]s a direct
result of [Lyudmyla's] direct and overt actions, the
child is experiencing: confusion; distress; a divided loyalty
between his parents; and a decreased desire to spend time
with [Sean]." Consequently, the court determined it was
in the child's best interest that Sean be awarded primary
physical custody. Lyudmyla appeals from that order.
argues that the district court abused its discretion by
allowing Dr. Holland to consider evidence that Sean obtained
in violation of NRS 200.650. We disagree. Even assuming that
Sean violated NRS 200.650 in producing the recordings,
court did not abuse its discretion in providing them to Dr.
expert witness in a child custody proceeding may consider