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In re K.Y.

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Second District

July 12, 2013

IN THE MATTER OF: K.Y., A.Y., and B.Y.

(Juvenile Appeal from (Common Pleas Court) Trial Court Nos. 2012-77, 2012-78, 2012-79

LISA M. FANNIN, Atty. Reg. #0082337, Clark County Prosecutor's Office, Attorney for Appellee, Clark County Dept. Of Job & Family

REBEKAH NEUHERZ, Atty. Reg. #0072093, Neuherz Law Offices, LLC, Attorney for Appellant, C.Y.

OPINION

FAIN, P.J.

{¶ 1} C.Y. appeals from an order of the Clark County Juvenile Court denying his motion for legal custody of his child, A.Y. He contends that the court erred by applying the wrong statutory provisions regarding the best interests of the child. He further contends that the decision is not supported by the evidence.

{¶ 2} We conclude that the trial court applied the correct statutory best-interest standards in making its custody decision. We also conclude that there is evidence in the record to support the trial court's decision, and that the decision does not constitute an abuse of discretion. Accordingly, the order of the juvenile court from which this appeal is taken is Affirmed.

I. The Course of Proceedings

{¶ 3} A.S. is the natural mother of A.Y., who was born in 1999. A.Y.'s father is C.Y. A.S. and C.Y. were never married.

{¶ 4} Clark County Family and Children's Services (the Agency) became involved with A.S. in December 2011, following allegations that A.S.'s children were being sexually abused by A.S.'s live-in boyfriend. [1] In early February, an "Agreed Order for Protective Supervision Order" was entered, in which the trial court found that A.Y. was dependent, pursuant to R.C. 2151.04(C). This order was signed by the court, C.Y. and the prosecuting attorney on behalf of the Agency. A.S. did not sign the document, and subsequently filed a motion to set aside the order. Thereafter, C.Y. filed a motion for legal custody of A.Y. A Court Appointed Special Advocate/ Guardian Ad Litem (CASA/GAL) filed a motion seeking to have A.Y. committed to the temporary custody of the Agency.

{¶ 5} A hearing was held in August 2012. Thereafter, on September 4, 2012, the juvenile court entered an order noting that the CASA/GAL had decided to forego the request for an award of temporary custody to the Agency. The court further noted that the Agency merely sought an extension of the protective supervision order. C.Y.'s motion for custody was denied. The court ordered that A.Y. remain with A.S., but granted visitation to C.Y. Finally, the juvenile court stated that pursuant to the agreement of the parties the Protective Supervision Order would be extended for a period of six months.[2] C.Y. appeals from the order denying his motion for legal custody.

II. The Trial Court Did Not Err in Overruling C.Y.'s Motion for Legal Custody

{¶ 6} C.Y. presents the following as his sole assignment of error:

THE TRIAL COURT ABUSED ITS DISCRETION WHEN IT DETERMINED THAT A CHANGE OF CUSTODY WAS NOT IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE CHILD.

{¶ 7} C.Y. contends that the juvenile court erred in finding that A.S. had been previously granted legal custody of A.Y. He further contends that the court, based upon its incorrect finding of a prior allocation of parental rights and responsibilities, erred by applying the best-interest standards set forth in R.C. 3109.04 rather than the standards set forth in R.C. 2151.353. Finally, he argues that even applying the best-interest ...


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