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In Re A.C., A Person Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law. v. M.C

June 13, 2012

IN RE A.C., A PERSON COMING UNDER THE JUVENILE COURT LAW. EL DORADO COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
M.C., DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. SDP20110008)

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

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED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 This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

M.C. (father) appeals from the juvenile court's orders denying his petition to modify a prior court order and terminating his parental rights as to minor A.C. (Welf. & Inst. Code, §§ 366.26, 388.)*fn1 Father contends only that the court erred by denying his section 388 petition. We affirm.

FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

On April 4, 2011, the El Dorado County Department of Human Services (the Department) filed a section 300 petition as to three-year-old A.C., alleging: Mother, with whom A.C. lived, and father had substance abuse and domestic violence histories. Both regularly used methamphetamine. Father had recently smoked marijuana and had two DUI convictions. A.C. feared returning to father because he was "mean" and spanked her painfully. The parents failed to reunify with A.C.'s older sibling (subsequently adopted) after receiving 12 months of services.*fn2

The juvenile court ordered A.C. detained on April 6, 2011.*fn3

The jurisdiction report noted that the Department had two prior cases with the parents. A.C.'s older sibling was detained at birth in May 2006 after testing positive for methamphetamine; after drug relapses, the parents' services were terminated in June 2007, and their parental rights were terminated in October 2007. In February 2008, when A.C. was six months old, the Department filed a section 300 petition naming her which resulted in a court-ordered voluntary maintenance plan, including outpatient substance abuse services and drug testing for the parents; at the parents' request, the case was closed in June 2008.

According to the report, father had pending criminal charges for possession of drug paraphernalia and hypodermic needles. Since 2006, father had participated in practically every substance abuse treatment program the Department had to offer, yet he still struggled to maintain sobriety. As of April 15, 2011, father said he had been clean for six weeks; he had been sentenced to the Proposition 36 program and would attend a drug court program and an intensive outpatient treatment.

Father admitted a history of domestic violence with mother. There were also recent police reports of domestic violence with his present live-in girlfriend, who was arrested along with him in January 2011 for being under the influence of a controlled substance. His visitation rights with A.C. had been suspended until he completed anger management classes. He said he intended to complete the full 52-week program.

A.C. was afraid of father's physical abuse and yelling. While playing, A.C. pretended to choke herself or others. She said that when she went home this time she would be "really good" so that mother would not choke her.

Officers responding to calls at father's home called the conditions there "'deplorable and dangerous.'"

At the jurisdictional hearing on April 20, 2011, father submitted on the Department's reports. The juvenile court sustained the ...


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