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

January 26, 2012


(Super. Ct. No. 11 JV SQ 28772-01)

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

In re S.L.



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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

V.A. (mother) appeals from the juvenile court's order denying reunification services as to the minor, S.L. (Welf. & Inst. Code, § 361.5, subd. (b)(10), (11) & (13).)*fn1 She contends substantial evidence does not support the order under any statutory provision the court relied on. We shall affirm.


On January 26, 2011, Shasta County Health and Human Services Agency (the agency) filed a section 300 petition as to S.L., a six-year-old male. The petition alleged:

1. Mother had a substance abuse problem that endangered the minor. She had a long drug-related criminal history. She also had a long history of juvenile dependency cases and referrals to children's services for medical neglect, general neglect, substance abuse, and physical abuse. On or about January 24, 2011, she was arrested for drug-related offenses and child endangerment. She admitted to recently using methamphetamine and selling drugs from her home. Large quantities of crystal methamphetamine and marijuana, along with paraphernalia for smoking methamphetamine and selling drugs, were found within the minor's reach in the room where he lived. There was minimal food in the home, and the minor, who had missed over 34 days of school, was hungry when placed in temporary custody. On the same date, mother's older child, A.B., was arrested after admitting to recent methamphetamine and marijuana abuse.

2. The alleged father, B.L., had substance abuse and anger control problems, with a criminal history of violent and drug-related offenses. He was on parole in Riverside County. During mother's prior dependency cases, he had resided with her and participated in substance abuse treatment.*fn2

3. Mother had lost custody of other children due to her unresolved substance abuse, general neglect, and medical neglect issues. She tested positive for "methamphetamine and tricyclates [sic]" in July 2002 when her child M.T. was born; the child was detained. An additional petition was filed in October 2002 alleging general and medical neglect of mother's older children, A.B. and E.B. Mother's parental rights were terminated as to M.T. in May 2003. Mother reunified with A.B. and E.B., but continued to have neglect-related referrals to children's services.

The detention report alleged:

On the date of mother's arrest, a probation/parole search was conducted at the residence where mother lived with S.L., A.B. (age 17), and E.B. (age 19). S.L. was at home. A.B., a ward of the juvenile court under section 602, subdivision (a), was determined to be under the influence of marijuana and was detained for violating probation.

Mother admitted she had used methamphetamine two or three days earlier, but denied using it frequently. She said she sold it to support her family. According to her, she was moving to the House of Hope. She said she was willing to do whatever she needed to do to get the minor back.

Mother had had 11 referrals to children's services from January 1998 to May 2007, and two dependency cases. Up to July 2002 there were five referrals, predominantly for general neglect involving substandard living conditions and mother's transient lifestyle. On July 12, 2002, her children were removed from her care. She fled the county and gave birth to another child in San Joaquin County, who was put into protective custody there and eventually placed for adoption due to mother's continued drug use. However, after mother completed services (including parenting classes and drug and alcohol services) in Shasta County, her other children were returned to her on January 3, 2005.

The minor appeared very bonded to mother and wanted to get back to her as soon as possible.

The February 17, 2011 jurisdiction/disposition report recommended denying services to mother under section 361.5, subdivision (b)(10), (11), and (13) (hereafter section 361.5(b)(10), section 361.5(b)(11), and section 361.5(b)(13), respectively)*fn3 on the following grounds: (1) Mother's reunification services and parental rights were terminated as to M.T., who tested positive for methamphetamine at birth (in 2002), after mother failed to complete the services that were offered; and (2) although mother completed services (including drug treatment) in the dependency ...

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