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In re R.K.

Court of Appeals of Iowa

December 5, 2018

IN THE INTEREST OF R.K. and R.N., Minor Children, B.S., Mother, Appellant, R.N., Father of R.N, Appellant.

          Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Colin J. Witt, District Associate Judge.

         A mother of two children and the father of one of the children appeal the juvenile court order terminating their parental rights. AFFIRMED.

          Thomas G. Crabb, Des Moines, for appellant mother.

          Amy K. Davis of Babich Goldman, PC, Des Moines, for appellant father.

          Thomas J. Miller, Attorney General, and Kathryn K. Lang, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee State.

          John Jellineck, Juvenile Public Defender, Des Moines, guardian ad litem for minor children.

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

          BOWER, JUDGE.

         A mother of two children and the father of one of the children appeal the juvenile court order terminating their parental rights. We find the mother did not preserve error on her claim regarding reasonable efforts and termination is in the best interests of the children. We affirm the termination of the parents' rights.

         I. Background Facts & Proceedings

         B.S. is the mother of R.K., born in 2014, and Ra.N., born in 2017. The father of Ra.N. is Ro.N. The children were removed from the mother's care shortly after Ra.N. was born because he tested positive for amphetamines. They were placed with Ro.N.'s mother. Both parents have a history of substance abuse. The mother's parental rights to an older child were terminated in 2014. Additionally, Ro.N. has a history of domestic violence.

         The children were adjudicated to be in need of assistance (CINA), pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.2(6)(c)(2) and (n) (2017). In November 2017, Ro.N. was arrested following an incident of domestic abuse against B.S., and subsequently pled guilty to domestic abuse assault. Ro.N. was ordered to have no contact with B.S. On December 14, 2017, the children were removed from the care of Ro.N.'s mother because she had been permitting unsupervised contact with the parents. R.K. was placed in the home of his paternal grandmother and Ra.N. was placed with a paternal uncle. Later, Ra.N. was placed in foster care.

         The parents continued to struggle with substance abuse. B.S. had a substance abuse evaluation, but did not engage in a substance abuse treatment program. Ro.N. attended a number of substance abuse treatment programs, but did not successfully complete them. Also, the parents continued to violate the no- contact order. In a permanency order filed on March 20, 2018, the juvenile court ordered the State to file a petition for termination of parental rights. The termination petition was filed on March 27.

         The termination hearing was held on August 6, 2018. Ro.N. testified he had been arrested in July 2018 for a probation violation and was currently attending an inpatient treatment program as part of his probation. Ro.N. stated he was not able to take custody of Ra.N. at that time. Ro.N. also still needed to complete a domestic abuse program. B.S. testified she was ready to enter the House of Mercy program that day. She stated she had not seen the children since Christmas. ...


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