IN THE INTEREST OF K.W. and K.W., Minor Children D.W, Father, Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Page County, Amy L.
Zacharias, District Associate Judge.
father challenges the termination of his parental rights to
two children, ages two and five. AFFIRMED.
R. Wyatt of Woods & Wyatt, P.L.L.C., Glenwood, for
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Ana Dixit, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
R. Danley, Sidney, guardian ad litem for minor children.
Considered by Danilson, C.J., and Tabor and McDonald, JJ.
father, Dalton, appeals the juvenile court
order terminating his parental relationship with
his two children-a son, Ko.W., born in 2011 and a daughter,
Ky.W., born in 2014. Dalton asks us to reverse the
termination order, alleging insufficient proof of the
statutory grounds and a lack of reasonable efforts by the
Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) to allow the
children's safe return to their father's care. Dalton
also contends termination is not in the children's best
interests. In the alternative, Dalton asks for an additional
three to six months to reunify with his children.
independently reviewing the record, we reach the same
conclusion as the juvenile court. Dalton did not maintain
significant and meaningful contact with his children and did
not seek additional services from the DHS. Dalton's
continued use of illegal drugs poses an ongoing risk to his
children; therefore, termination of his parental rights is in
their best interests. Finally, postponing permanency is not
warranted on this record.
I. Facts and Prior Proceedings
admitted dealing methamphetamine out of the house where he
lived with his two children (then ages four and one) in
October 2015. In the five years leading up to that time,
Dalton regularly used methamphetamine and had been under the
influence of the drug while the children were in his care.
The parents would ingest methamphetamine in the garage,
leaving their young children alone in the house. After
investigating the parents' conduct, the DHS entered a
founded child abuse report for the denial of critical care
and failure to provide proper supervision.
juvenile court adjudicated Ko.W. and Ky.W. as children in
need of assistance (CINA) in January 2016. The court ordered
the children removed from Dalton's care but allowed them
to remain with their mother. In July 2016, the children were
removed from their mother's care and placed with their
paternal grandfather, where they remained for the duration of
State filed a petition to terminate parental rights in
January 2017. Two months later, the court held a termination
hearing. Neither parent appeared personally, though attorneys
represented them at the proceeding. The State presented its
case only through exhibits and the juvenile court's
judicial notice of the CINA proceedings. The DHS social
worker reported her last contact with Dalton was in August
5, 2017, the juvenile court issued its order, finding grounds
to terminate parental rights to the younger child based on
Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(h) (2017) and to both children
based on section 232.116(1)(e). ...