IN THE INTEREST OF M.W., Minor Child, S.W., Mother, Appellant.
from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, David F.
mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her
G. Martin, Cedar Falls, for appellant mother.
J. Miller, Attorney General, and Anna T. Stoeffler, Assistant
Attorney General, for appellee State.
L. Banning of Juvenile Public Defender's office,
Waterloo, guardian ad litem for minor child.
Considered by Potterfield, P.J., and Doyle and May, JJ.
POTTERFIELD, PRESIDING JUDGE.
mother appeals the juvenile court's order terminating
parental rights to her child, M.W., and the denial of her
motion for new trial. M.W. was born in April 2018. The
juvenile court terminated the mother's rights to that
child pursuant to Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(e) and (h)
(2018) in March 2019.After the entry of the termination order,
the mother moved for a new trial under Iowa Rule of Civil
Procedure 1.1004, arguing that a new trial should be granted
to address the best interests of both M.W. and her
half-sibling, who was born the day of the termination trial
in February 2019. That half-sibling is currently the subject
of child-in-need-of-assistance (CINA) proceedings. The
juvenile court denied her motion, and the mother now appeals
both the denial of her new-trial motion and the juvenile
court's termination of her parental rights.
Standards of Review
review termination cases de novo. In re L.T., 924
N.W.2d 521, 526 (Iowa 2019). "We are not bound by the
juvenile court's findings of fact, but we do give them
weight." In re A.M., 843 N.W.2d 100, 110 (Iowa
of motions for new trial are reviewed for abuse of
discretion. In re Marriage of Wagner, 604 N.W.2d
605, 609 (Iowa 2000). "A district court abuses its
discretion if it rests its ruling on 'clearly untenable
or unreasonable grounds.'" Fry v. Blauvelt,
818 N.W.2d 123, 128 (Iowa 2012) (quoting Lawson v.
Kurthals, 792 N.W.2d 251, 258 (Iowa 2010)). Motions for
new trial based on newly discovered evidence are not favored.
In re D.W., 385 N.W.2d 570, 583 (Iowa 1986).