IN THE INTEREST OF T.W. and J.W., Minor Children, S.B., Mother, Appellant, J.W., Father, Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Linn County, Susan F.
Flaherty, Associate Juvenile Judge.
mother and a father separately appeal from the termination of
their parental rights.
Jeannine L. Roberts, Cedar Rapids, for appellant mother.
D. Fisher of Nidey Erdahl Fisher Pilkington & Meier, PLC,
Cedar Rapids, for appellant father.
J. Miller, Attorney General, for Kathryn K. Lang, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
Kimberly A. Opatz of Linn County Advocate, Cedar Rapids,
guardian ad litem for minor children.
Considered by Potterfield, P.J., Tabor, J., and Gamble, S.J.
GAMBLE, SENIOR JUDGE.
father and a mother separately appeal from the termination of
their parental rights to T.W., born in February 2013, and
J.W., born in February 2015 one-and-a-half months
prematurely. In a well-documented and detailed order,
including findings that the father and mother lacked
credibility, the juvenile court terminated parental rights
pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(f) (2018) (as to
T.W.), (g) (as to both children), and (h) (as to
appeal, the mother argues the State failed to make reasonable
efforts to reunify her with her children. She acknowledges a
long struggle with sobriety but asserts she should be granted
an additional six months in light of her ninety-day sobriety
and recent re-engagement with services. The father contends
the children could be returned to his care at present and
that termination is not in the children's best interests.
He also argues the court erred in considering anonymous
hearsay statements made to an investigator and in denying him
a new trial.
de novo review, see In re A.S., 906 N.W.2d 467, 472
(Iowa 2018), we find clear and convincing evidence supports
termination of both parents' rights, and termination and
adoption will best provide the children with much needed
permanence. We therefore affirm.
not reiterate the lengthy history of these proceedings-the
juvenile court has done so. Suffice it to say, the mother has
a lengthy criminal history; has been diagnosed with bipolar,
anxiety, and attention-deficit disorders; and has a
significant history of substance abuse. She has had nine
children, none of whom are in her care. She has been involved
with the department of human services (DHS) for many years.
The father has seven children, none of whom are in his care.
He has a lengthy history of domestic violence-involving the
mother and other partners. He, too, has been known to DHS for
many years. Numerous child-abuse assessments involve these
mother and father have had four children together. Their
rights to two older children were terminated in January 2012
due to the mother not following through with substance-abuse
treatment, the father's untreated anger issues, and
dishonesty by both parents impeding the service
parents' third child, T.W., was adjudicated a CINA on
April 10, 2013, and J.W. was ...