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In re A.S.

Court of Appeals of Iowa

September 26, 2018

IN THE INTEREST OF A.S., Minor Child, J.B., Father, Appellant.

          Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Jefferson County, William S. Owens, Associate Juvenile Judge.

         A father appeals the juvenile court's termination of his parental rights. AFFIRMED.

          Larry J. Brock of Brock Law Office, Washington, for appellant mother.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Anagha Dixit, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee State.

          Patricia J. Lipski, Washington, guardian ad litem for minor child.

          Considered by Potterfield, P.J., and Bower and McDonald, JJ.

          BOWER, JUDGE.

         A father appeals the juvenile court's termination of his parental rights. We find additional time to have the child placed in the father's care is not warranted and termination is in the child's best interests. We affirm the decision of the juvenile court.

         I. Background Facts & Proceedings

         J.B., father, and J.S., mother, are the parents of A.S., born in 2015. A.S. resided with the mother. The Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) provided A.S. with family services since birth.

         A.S. was removed from the mother's care on March 6, 2017, after the mother tested positive for multiple controlled substances and admitted use of controlled substances to her probation officer. At the time of removal, the father was not involved in the life of A.S. and the mother had a no-contact order against the father. A.S. was placed with the maternal grandmother.

         On May 3, the court adjudicated A.S. a child in need of assistance (CINA) pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.2(6)(c)(2) and (n) (2017). In July, the placement of A.S. was transferred to a foster family.

         From the time of A.S.'s removal, the father was arrested three times: twice for violating the no-contact order with the mother and once for violating his probation. Shortly after the removal, an incident of domestic violence occurred between the mother and the father, leading to the father's conviction. He was not in contact with DHS until June 2017. The father had weekly visits with A.S. from June until October, supervised by a Family Safety, Risk, and Permanency (FSRP) worker.

          The father tested positive for controlled substances in October resulting in the revocation of his probation. While the father was in prison, he participated in available programming including Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous, and parenting courses. The father's sentence length prevented him from entering substance-abuse treatment or taking domestic-abuse programming. Starting in February, after DHS approved the communication, he wrote letters to A.S. daily. Beginning in March, the father was ...


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