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In Re A. G., A Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law. v. v. S

September 13, 2011

IN RE A. G., A PERSON COMING UNDER THE JUVENILE COURT LAW. SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY HUMAN SERVICES AGENCY, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
V. S., DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. J05108)

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Blease , Acting P. J.

In re A.G.

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

Appellant, the mother of the minor, appeals from the juvenile court's order terminating parental rights. (Welf. & Inst. Code, §§ 366.26, 395; further statutory references are to the Welfare and Institutions Code.) Appellant claims inquiry and notice under the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) (25 U.S.C. § 1901 et seq.) were insufficient. We reject these claims.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND*fn1

In February 2009, a dependency petition was filed regarding the seven-month-old minor after appellant was arrested for child endangerment, based on her mental illness and methamphetamine use.

The minor's father initially filled out a form in which he denied Indian heritage. However, when the juvenile court inquired of him whether he had Indian ancestry, he stated: "I probably do because I have a lot of family. Pretty much we have a big family. My grandma, she had like ten kids and all them like branch off." The father offered to "look into that," and the court directed him to provide any information to his attorney. At a hearing several months later, after the father had waived reunification services and stopped appearing in the matter, his attorney again told the court that the father did not know whether he had Indian heritage and wanted an inquiry to be made of the paternal great-grandmother in this regard. The social worker subsequently made two attempts to contact this relative to no avail.

With regard to appellant's Indian heritage, she told the juvenile court at the jurisdictional hearing that she had no known Indian ancestry, but over a year later, the maternal grandmother reported she might have Indian ancestry with the "Apache, Blackfoot, [and] Nava[j]o" tribes. Notice of the proceedings was sent to these tribes, but it did not include information about paternal relatives other than the paternal grandmother's name.

After appellant's reunification services were terminated, she filed a petition for extraordinary writ in this court, arguing that two additional tribes should have been noticed of the proceedings. The petition was summarily denied pursuant to Joyce G. v. Superior Court (1995) 38 Cal.App.4th 1501, 1514.

Meanwhile, according to a status review report in September 2010, none of the responses received from the tribes indicated the minor was an Indian child. Notice continued to be sent to the tribes that had not responded.

At the section 366.26 hearing, the juvenile court terminated parental rights and ordered a ...


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