Virginia Beach judge makes landmark ruling in same-sex custody case

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Virginia Judge Makes Landmark Ruling In Same-Sex Custody Case

Virginia Beach, Va. – "It felt amazing to finally hear what I already know and what I already felt. It was great," Lauren Poole told NewsChannel 3.

Moments earlier, a judge told her something she says she's known for years — that she's a parent to her child, even though she's not biologically connected to him.

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Across the court room, Lauren's wife, Karen, cried. She just learned that she could soon share custody of the son they share.

The two are now separated, but years ago, Karen was impregnated by a sperm donor.

But today, a judge ruled that Lauren is a "parent," meaning she has say in custody arrangements.

It's the first case of its kind in the Commonwealth.

"We're making law. It's a big deal," Lauren told NewsChannel 3.



Related: A Michigan same-sex couple won a custody case involving their 5 children:
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NTP: Michigan same-sex couple adopt 5 children
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Virginia Beach judge makes landmark ruling in same-sex custody case
Jayne Rowse, left, and April DeBoer, in blue shirt, arrive with their children and family at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. The same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple are raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer, left, wipes away tears before Judge Karen McDonald, right, and DeBoer's spouse Jayne Rowse, center, after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple are raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Ryanne, left, Nolan, center and Jacob DeBoer-Rowse eat cake after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer, left, and spouse Jayne Rowse, center, are hugged by Judge Karen McDonald, as Ken DeBoer, holds 18 -month-old Kennedy after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple is raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Attorney Dana Nessel shows Ryanne DeBoer-Rowse her adaption certificate after a ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer, left, and spouse Jayne Rowse, walk with two of their children after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple is raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer, left, and spouse Jayne Rowse, walk with two of their children after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple is raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Judge Karen McDonald meets with Nolan and Ryanne DeBoer-Rowse before an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. April DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer walks with Rylee DeBoer-Rowse after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Jayne Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
April DeBoer, left, and spouse Jayne Rowse, walk with two of their children after an adoption ceremony at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. DeBoer and Rowse, the same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple is raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Jayne Rowse, left, and April DeBoer, arrive with their children and family at the Oakland County Circuit Court, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015, in Pontiac, Mich. The same-sex couple from Michigan has jointly adopted five children, closing a case that started when they challenged the state's restrictions on adoption and helped pave the way for the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing gay marriage. The couple are raising the children at their Hazel Park home. They sued the state in 2012, initially challenging Michigan's restrictions on joint adoption and later the ban on gay marriage at the suggestion of the judge in the case. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
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