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In re C.Q.

California Court of Appeals, Second District, First Division

August 2, 2013

In re C.Q., et al., Persons Coming Under the Juvenile Court Law. LOS ANGELES COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES, Plaintiff and Respondent,
v.
G.Q., Defendant and Appellant, A.R., Respondent.

PUB. ORDER 9/3/13 (SEE END OF OPN.; REPOSTED TO CORRECT DOCUMENT ORDER)

APPEAL from an order of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County No. CK94654. Sherri S. Sobel, Referee.

Lisa A. Raneri, under appointment by the Court of Appeal, for Defendant and Appellant.

Roni Keller, under appointment by the Court of Appeal, for Respondent A.R.

No appearance for Plaintiff and Respondent Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services.

CHANEY, J.

In this dependency case (Welf. & Inst. Code, § 300 et seq.), [1] the juvenile court issued a permanent restraining order requiring G.Q. (Father) to stay away from A.R. (Mother), and Father and Mother’s three minor children except during monitored visitation. Father appeals from the restraining order, challenging the sufficiency of the evidence supporting the portion of the order naming the children as protected persons. He does not challenge the portions of the order requiring him to stay away from Mother and the family home where Mother and the children live.

Mother urges this court to affirm the restraining order in its entirety. Respondent Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) did not recommend the juvenile court issue the restraining order. Nor did it take a position below on Mother’s request for a restraining order. DCFS has not filed a brief or otherwise made an appearance on appeal.

We reverse the portion of the restraining order naming the children as protected persons, for the reasons discussed below.

BACKGROUND

Detention

In July 2012, when this family came to DCFS’s attention, Father and Mother were married and living together with their three minor daughters, C.Q. (age 16), Ja.Q. (age 12) and Je.Q. (age 11), and their adult daughter, K.Q. (age 19). On July 11, 2012, Mother went into a police station and reported an incident of domestic violence perpetrated by Father on Mother earlier the same day in the family home. The incident, which we describe below, occurred in the immediate presence of Father and Mother’s 12-year-old daughter Ja.Q. and while their other three daughters were in the home. Also on July 11, 2012, DCFS received and responded to a referral about this incident and interviewed Mother and her four daughters. These interviews, described below, are summarized in the July 19, 2012 detention report.

When the social worker arrived at the family home on July 11, 2012, she heard people yelling inside. Father and Mother’s four daughters were arguing. Mother told the social worker her daughters were upset because Mother had reported the incident of domestic violence to the police and a social worker was now visiting their home. According to Mother, her daughters told her they would not “report the domestic violence” because they did not want Father to have to leave the family home and go to jail.

Mother described the incident to the social worker as follows: While out looking for a job on July 11, 2012, [2] Mother received a telephone call from adult daughter K.Q., asking Mother to hurry home because the three minor daughters were making a mess. When Mother returned home, Father was there. Mother told their three minor daughters to clean up the home and put things back the way they were when Mother left that morning. Appearing angry, Father began arguing with Mother. He yelled: “‘You can’t discipline my daughters, you are stupid and you don’t work, that is why you can’t tell them what to do.’” Father grabbed boxes of glass figurines from a storage area in the laundry room and threw the boxes to the ground in front of Mother and their daughter Ja.Q. The other three daughters were in their bedrooms with the doors open. Mother believed they were listening to the argument. Mother asked Father why he was throwing the glass figurines she had bought. Father struck Mother in the arm with a closed fist.[3] Ja.Q., who was crying, moved in between Father and Mother and asked Father not to hit Mother. Father left the home. The daughter was not physically injured.

Mother told the social worker she and Father had separated two years before the July 11, 2012 incident because Father was in a relationship with another woman. Mother and Father continued to live together despite the separation. Father paid the rent. Mother stated Father had been insulting her and arguing with her for the past two years. Father told her she was “‘worthless’” and “‘dependent’” on him. He also told her: “‘You don’t even work so you have no say in this house and my daughters don’t have to listen to you, you should be cleaning the house not my daughters!’” According to Mother, her daughters were “siding with [Father] because he ‘buys them everything and he also gives them money.’” Mother described Father as a “a great father” to her daughters.

Mother stated the July 11, 2012 incident was the second domestic violence incident between her and Father. The first incident occurred about a year prior when Father and Mother argued about a car Father had bought Mother. Father wanted to take the car back. He told Mother she should work to earn money to buy herself a car. Mother argued the car was a gift and Father should not take back a gift. According to Mother, Father struck her in the arm, resulting in a bruise.[4] Mother stated her daughters witnessed this incident but urged her not ...


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