IN THE INTEREST OF A.G., B.G., and I.G., Minor Children, A.G., Mother, Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Pottawattamie County, Craig
M. Dreismeier, District Associate Judge.
mother appeals from the juvenile court order terminating her
parental rights to her three children.
E. Benson of Benson Law, P.C., Council Bluffs, for appellant
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Gretchen Witte Kraemer,
Assistant Attorney General, for appellee State.
Roberta J. Megel of State Public Defender Office, Council
Bluffs, guardian ad litem for minor children.
Considered by Danilson, C.J., and Potterfield and Bower, JJ.
mother appeals from the juvenile court order
terminating her parental rights to her three children, A.G.
(born in 2013), B.G. (born in 2011), and I.G. (born in
2010). The mother's parental rights were
terminated pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(d), (e),
(f), (i), and (/) (2016). She challenges each of the
statutory grounds and maintains termination was not in the
best interests of the children.
Background Facts and Proceedings.
Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) first became involved
with this family in April 2014 based on reports from I.G.
that her father had hit her in the face, giving her a bloody
nose, and had touched her "coochie." Additionally,
the mother reported an extensive history of domestic violence
between her and the children's father, with the father as
the perpetrator. At the time DHS began its involvement, the
mother and the children were living at the home of the
thereafter, in May, the mother left the children in the care
of relatives and left town in order to resume her
relationship with the father. The children were then
officially removed from the parents' care by court order.
parents went a number of months without seeing the children
or beginning services. The department had concerns regarding
the mother's mental health, as she had a longstanding
diagnosis of bipolar schizophrenia disorder, and the
possibility of substance abuse.
August 2014, the parents stipulated to adjudicating all three
children in need of assistance (CINA). The children were then
moved from the maternal relatives' home to a foster home
closer to where the mother and father had moved, but the
parents continued to refuse services for a period of time.
2015, things were going well enough for the family that DHS
initiated a trial home visit, placing the children in the
care of the parents with DHS supervision. It was ordered the
family continue participating in family safety, risk, and
permanency (FSRP) services and the mother participate in
mental-health services as recommended to deal with her
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and bipolar
schizophrenia. DHS had ongoing concerns regarding the
cleanliness and safety of the home and the general
instability in the ...