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In re N.L.

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Third District

September 16, 2013

IN THE MATTER OF: N.L., ALLEGED DEPENDENT CHILD. IN THE MATTER OF: L.L., ALLEGED DEPENDENT CHILD.

Appeals from Hancock County Common Pleas Court Juvenile Division Trial Court Nos. 20930027 and 20830037

Garth W. Brown for Appellants.

Nicole M. Winget for Appellee, Nicole Bower.

OPINION

PRESTON, P.J.

(¶1} Appellants, Randy and Patty Powell (the "Powells"), appeal the November 15, 2012 judgment entries nunc pro tunc of the Hancock County Court of Common Pleas, Juvenile Division, granting the motion of Mother-Appellee, Nicole Bower ("Bower"), for a change in disposition regarding legal custody of the minor children L.L. and N.L. We affirm.

(¶2} These consolidated appeals were before us in prior consolidated appeals, In re L.L, 3d Dist. Hancock Nos. 5-12-05 and 5-12-06, 2012-Ohio-4346. We recited the following facts in that opinion:

The minor child L.L. was born in July of 2008, and the minor child N.L. was born in July of 2009. Bower and William Lentz are the biological parents of the two children.
On August 28, 2008, the Hancock County Job and Family Services Child Protective Services Unit (hereinafter "CPSU") filed a complaint alleging that L.L. was a dependent child pursuant to R.C. 2151.04(B) and (C). (L.L. Doc. 1). The complaint alleged that CPSU received a report that Bower and Lentz "were both seeing and hearing demonic spirits in the home." (Id.) Further, the complaint alleged that Lentz had a history of using inhalants, and that Lentz was a registered sex offender based upon an incident from 2004. (Id.) The complaint alleged that there was a report from Robin Brown with Century Health wherein Brown expressed concerns regarding the parents potentially trying to "exorcise evil from the baby which may hurt the child." (Id.)
Also on August 28, 2008, CPSU filed a motion for pre-dispositional interim orders, requesting that emergency temporary custody of L.L. be granted to CPSU. (Id.)
On August 28, 2008, the court granted the ex parte order of emergency temporary custody to CPSU pending a full hearing. (L.L. Doc. 2).
On September 3, 2008, the court filed an entry granting emergency temporary custody of L.L. to CPSU. The court found that CPSU had made reasonable efforts to prevent the removal of L.L. and also found that removal was in L.L.'s best interest. (L.L. Doc. 4).
On September 11, 2008, Bower admitted to the allegations in the complaint that L.L. was dependent pursuant to R.C. 2151.04(B) and (C). The court thus found by clear and convincing evidence that L.L. was a dependent child as alleged.
On September 15, 2008, Julie Niswander was appointed CASA/GAL for L.L. in this case. (L.L. Doc. 11).
On September 16, 2008, Bower, along with Lentz, did not contest the evidence presented at the shelter care hearing and did not contest the court finding that L.L. was dependent as alleged in the complaint. (L.L. Doc. 13). The court therefore found by clear and convincing evidence that L.L. was a dependent child as alleged in the complaint. (Id.)
On November 17, 2008, the Powells filed a motion for relative placement of L.L. (L.L. Doc. 18). At a hearing on November 21, 2008, that motion was withdrawn and L.L. remained in the custody of foster parents. In an entry filed after that hearing, the court adopted a case plan filed September 16, 2008. (Id.)
On May 21, 2009, on a review of the case, it was determined that relative placement was possible with the Powells and that the Powells were willing to take custody of L.L. and work with CPSU.
In July of 2009, N.L. was born. On July 21, 2009, CPSU filed a complaint alleging that N.L. was a dependent child pursuant to R.C. 2151.04(b), (c), and (d). The complaint alleged that Bower could not "adequately protect her children as she often flees from the home to escape Mr. Lentz, but later returns." The complaint further alleged that prior psychological evaluations precluded the return of L.L. to the custody of Bower, and that the home-based therapist had received threats from Lentz.
Also on July 21, 2009, CPSU filed a motion requesting an ex parte order of emergency temporary custody of N.L. to CPSU. (N.L. Doc. 1).
On July 23, 2009, the Powells filed motions for relative placement for L.L. and N.L. (L.L. Doc. 27); (N.L. Doc. 4). On that same day, the court ordered the children into the emergency custody of the Powells. (L.L. Doc. 28); (N.L. Doc. 7).
On July 24, 2009, the court filed an entry finding that probable cause existed to place L.L. and N.L. into the Powells' legal custody, subject to protective supervision of CPSU, and that it was in the children's best interests. (L.L. Doc. 29); (N.L. Doc. 9).
On August 12, 2009, Julie Niswander was appointed GAL for N.L. (N.L. Doc. 12).
On September 3, 2009, Bower admitted to the allegations alleged in the complaint regarding N.L. being a dependent child pursuant to R.C. 2151.04(b), (c), and (d). (N.L. Doc. 17).
On October 1, 2009, a disposition hearing was held wherein N.L. was placed into the Powells' legal custody subject to protective supervision by CPSU. (N.L. Doc. 21).
On February 12, 2010, the court adopted the case plan for N.L. filed February 11, 2010. (N.L. Doc. 28).
On February 23, 2010, a new CASA/GAL was assigned to this case, Stephanie Stephan, replacing the prior GAL, Julie Niswander. ...

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