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In Re K.T., A Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law. v. Butte County Department of Employment and Social Services Et

May 20, 2011

IN RE K.T., A PERSON COMING UNDER THE JUVENILE COURT LAW. L.M., PLAINTIFF AND APPELLANT,
v.
BUTTE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT AND SOCIAL SERVICES ET AL., DEFENDANTS AND RESPONDENTS.



(Super. Ct. No. J35290)

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Butz , J.

In re K.T.

CA3

NOT TO BE PUBLISHED

California Rules of Court, rule 8.1115(a), prohibits courts and parties from citing or relying on opinions not certified for publication or ordered published, except as specified by rule 8.1115(b). This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

In an earlier appeal in In re K.T. (Feb. 16, 2010, C061397 [nonpub. opn.]), we upheld the juvenile court's order finding that L.M., minor K.T.'s former foster mother, was not K.T.'s de facto parent. L.M. filed the present appeal from a subsequent order denying her access to K.T.'s juvenile court records. We shall affirm.

FACTUAL BACKGROUND

On April 30, 2010, L.M. filed a "Request for Disclosure of Juvenile Case File" (form JV-570). She stated she needed K.T.'s records "for the appeal I will be filing because I contend this abuse of [K.T.] was part of a retaliation" by her husband and his agents "who made false accusations against me and deprived me of my health and safety, my child and my property via means of criminal activity and denial of due process." She also claimed she needed the records to help her reconstruct the "'trauma story'" and help her recover "from the great bodily injury inflicted on [her] by the traumatic removal of [K.T.] without warning or warrant and the ensuing events."

Attached to L.M.'s request was part of a dependency report, which explains that K.T. had been placed with T.M. and L.M., "Non-Related Extended Family Members," but because of domestic violence between L.M. and T.M., partly witnessed by K.T., K.T. was removed from L.M.'s home on April 23, 2008. The report stated K.T. would be at risk if returned to L.M. "as her home is unsafe and unstable at this time."

Also attached were copies of parts of briefs from a prior appeal, apparently annotated by L.M. as to facts she disputes, and portions of a reporter's transcript of an earlier juvenile court hearing, where L.M. was denied de facto parent status, also apparently annotated by L.M.

L.M.'s request was opposed by Special County Counsel David W. Kennedy on the ground that L.M. "is not related to the minor and has no beneficial relationship to him. She apparently believes the minor is her child. She is on a 'fishing expedition' for information she can subsequently use in a civil action against her prior husband and other targets of her vexatious litigation." The opposition also noted that "if one peruses the attachments [to the request], it becomes clear that [L.M.] is interested in contesting jurisdictional findings of this court in excess of two years old, in addition to suing everyone and anyone whose name is associated with Butte County. Those findings are no longer appealable and are res judicata. Her relationship to this case is non-existent and the records should not be opened to her."

The juvenile court denied the motion on May 17, 2010, finding L.M. had not shown good cause to obtain the records she sought. L.M. filed a timely notice of appeal.

DISCUSSION

Although L.M. appears in this court without counsel, we must apply ordinary appellate procedural rules to this appeal. (Rappleyea v. Campbell (1994) 8 Cal.4th 975, 984-985; Doran v. Dreyer (1956) 143 Cal.App.2d 289, 290.) We must presume court orders are correct. (In re Marriage of Arceneaux (1990) 51 Cal.3d 1130, 1133; Denham v. Superior Court (1970) 2 Cal.3d 557, 564.) A party challenging an order has the burden to show error by providing an adequate record and making coherent legal arguments, supported by authority, or the claims will be deemed forfeited. (People v. Freeman (1994) 8 Cal.4th 450, 482, fn. 2 [failure to provide clear arguments]; Ballard v. ...


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