IN THE INTEREST OF T.I. and M.I., Minor Children, K.S., Mother, Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Marshall County, Paul G.
Crawford, District Associate Judge.
mother appeals the order removing her children from her care.
J. Meade of Moore, McKibben, Goodman & Lorenz, LLP,
Marshalltown, for appellant mother.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Mary A. Triick, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
Cowdrey of Public Defenders Office, Marshalltown, guardian ad
litem for minor children.
Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Doyle and Mullins, JJ.
mother appeals following the entry of a May 7, 2018 order
removing her children from her care, arguing removal was
improper. We review her claim de novo. See In re
J.S., 846 N.W.2d 36, 40 (Iowa 2014). In doing so, we
give weight to the juvenile court's fact findings,
although we are not bound by them. See id.
Background Facts and Proceedings.
children were initially removed from the mother's care in
September 2017 due to her alcohol and substance abuse, and
they were later adjudicated children in need of assistance
under the definition set forth in Iowa Code section
232.2(6)(c)(2) and (n) (2017). The children were placed with
their maternal grandparents. Thereafter, the mother made much
progress in her sobriety and in addressing her issues with
alcohol and marijuana. As a result, the juvenile court
entered a stipulated modification of CINA dispositional order
on April 13, 2018, continuing the CINA adjudication under
section 232.2(6)(c)(2) but returning the children to the
weeks later, the children reported discovering marijuana in
the mother's home. They were afraid for their safety and
expressed their concerns to school officials. The mother was
charged with possession of marijuana, possession of drug
paraphernalia, and child endangerment. A no-contact order was
State filed a motion for temporary removal and motion to
modify disposition, and the court entered an ex parte order
for temporary removal pursuant to section 232.78 finding
"removal is necessary to avoid imminent danger to the
child[ren]'s life and health and there is insufficient
time to file a petition and hold a hearing under Iowa Code
section 232.95." The court further found the mother was
on probation at the time for child endangerment under similar
circumstances. The order provided the children be in the
temporary custody of the Iowa Department of Human Services
(DHS) for placement in the home of a relative or suitable
person or in foster care.
removal hearing was set for May 4, 2018-within ten days of
the temporary removal order. See Iowa Code §
232.95(1). After the May 4 contested removal hearing,
the court ordered the children "remain removed"
from the mother's custody. The mother