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In re B.K.

Court of Appeal of Iowa

November 20, 2013

IN THE INTEREST OF B.K. and M.K., Minor Children, J.K., Father, Appellant, A.K., Mother, Appellant.

Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Plymouth County, Robert J. Dull, District Associate Judge.

A.K. and J.K. appeal the juvenile court ruling in a child in need of assistance proceeding.

Jared R. Weber, Orange City, for appellant-father.

Robert B. Block II, LeMars, for appellant-mother.

Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, Bruce Kempkes, Assistant Attorney General, Darin J. Raymond, County Attorney, and Amy K. Oetken, Assistant County Attorney, for appellee.

Kathryn C. Kirts of Juvenile Law Center, Sioux City, attorney and guardian ad litem for minor children.

Considered by Doyle, P.J., and Tabor and Bower, JJ.

BOWER, J.

A.K. and J.K. appeal the juvenile court ruling in a child in need of assistance (CINA) proceeding. The juvenile court determined the two children should remain in the care, custody and control of the department of human services (DHS) for placement in a planned permanent living arrangement. Both parents individually argue it is in the children's best interests to be returned to their care. J.K., the father, also argues the juvenile court erred in allowing the permanency hearing to proceed without the presence of the children. We find the juvenile court's permanency order is in the children's best interests. We also find error was not preserved on the procedural issues or the delay in the permanency determination. We affirm.

I. Background Facts and Proceedings

A.K. and J.K. are the parents of two children who were removed from their care. During a permanency hearing held on June 7, 2013, the juvenile court determined the children could not be returned to their parent's home and should continue in the care, custody, and control of DHS with the parents continuing to have visitation.

At the time of the removal, the children were living in a home with A.K.[1]The children were removed due to A.K.'s failure to provide a clean, safe, and adequate home. The home was found to be extremely dirty and cluttered to the point the children were unable to sleep in their own beds. A.K. admitted the home contained animal feces and urine and there were dirty dishes throughout the home, including in the bathtub. There are further allegations A.K., who has been diagnosed with depression and bi-polar disorder, allowed her boyfriend to live in the home. He sexually abused one of the children and used the internet to view inappropriate images of young boys.

The children were adjudicated in need of assistance and initially allowed to remain in the home with A.K. DHS moved the children to foster care after A.K. failed to participate in services offered to help her maintain a safe and sanitary home.

Since his release from prison, J.K. has attempted to be part of the children's lives. Following an allegation of inappropriate sexual conversations in the presence of the children, J.K. was directed to participate in therapy to address sexual and relationship issues. At the time of the hearing, he had only ...


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