A woman who found out that the man who proposed to her was married can keep the $40,000 engagement ring he gave her, even though she was the one who broke off the relationship, a judge has ruled.
Judge Rolando T. Acosta said that because Brian Callahan was still married when he gave Dana Clyburn Parker a 3.41-carat diamond engagement ring, the agreement to marry was void.
Acosta noted that Callahan was in the process of getting a divorce in Massachusetts when he proposed. In June 2002, Callahan, of Manhattan, received a judgment of divorce nisi, meaning the divorce from his wife had been approved but would not be official and absolute for another 90 days.
That July, Callahan, 36, and Parker, of Charleston, S.C., got engaged in South Carolina and she moved to New York to live with him, the judge wrote. They had met on the Internet in September 2001.
Parker, a mortgage broker, dumped Callahan after finding evidence on his computer that he had been trolling for women on the Internet and after learning he was married, her lawyer, Kevin Conway, said.
Callahan, who works in the financial services industry, sued in July 2003 to get back the ring — or alternatively $40,000 — and his personal property. While the judge allowed Parker to keep the ring, he ordered her to return Callahan's personal property.
Callahan's lawyer said his client had not decided whether to appeal.