Wednesday, April 30, 2014

In Re A.B. (Cal. Ct. App. - April 30, 2014)

"On October 15, 2012, DCFS received a referral that [two-year old] A.B. was developmentally delayed, appeared unhealthy, and was primarily cared for by her maternal grandmother Maria B. (maternal grandmother), who appeared to have mental health issues. An emergency response social worker immediately investigated but could not locate A.B. The social worker spoke with mother, who denied the allegations and refused to cooperate with DCFS. The next day, the social worker contacted father and learned that A.B. could not yet walk and was behind on her immunizations. The social worker also gained access to mother’s apartment, which was cluttered with thirty boxes filled with paper and trash. A mattress and a mattress pad were on the floor, but no baby crib or any other furniture was found in the apartment. . . .

[O]n December 27, 2012, University of Kentucky police officers found A.B. with maternal grandmother, who was wandering around outside on the university’s Lexington campus. The temperature was below freezing and it was windy, but A.B. had no pants, shirt, shoes, sweater, jacket or gloves. A.B. was examined by a doctor in Kentucky, who determined she met the criteria for Failure to Thrive based on her low weight and delayed physical development. Kentucky police discovered mother had wired money to maternal grandmother multiple times while A.B. was purportedly missing.
 A.B. was returned to California and placed in foster care. Her weight was below the fifth percentile for her age, and her body mass index was only sixteen percent. She was developmentally delayed and could not yet walk or talk due to social deprivation."

Cases like these make me more than happy that I'm not appointed counsel for parents.