Court of Appeals of Ohio, Fifth District, Licking
IN THE MATTER OF: B.F. Dependent Child
from the Licking County Court of Common Pleas, Juvenile
Division, Case No. F2017-0459
APPELLEE, LCJFS: WILLIAM C. HAYES LICKING CO. PROSECUTOR
ANDREW P. ROWAN GUARDIAN AD LITEM: JANET STREMSKI
APPELLANT MOTHER: JERMAINE COLQUITT ATTORNEY FOR MINOR
CHILDREN: ADAM JOHNSON
W. Scott Gwin, P.J. Hon. William B. Hoffman, J. Hon. Patricia
A. Delaney, J.
Appellant S.C. ("Mother") appeals from the July 18,
2019 Judgment Entry of the Licking County Court of Common
Pleas, Juvenile Division, terminating her parental rights and
granting the motion for permanent custody of appellee Licking
County Job & Family Services, Children Services Division
The instant appeal is related to, but not consolidated with,
In the Matter of A.F., Dependent Child, 5th Dist. Licking No.
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Mother has two minor children, A.F. and B.F. At the time of
the evidentiary hearing, A.F. was 11 years old and B.F. was
almost 9 years old. The children are presently placed
together in a foster home with no plans to adopt. The
children do not have special needs.
Father is B.F., Sr., who has not appeared throughout this
action. His whereabouts are unknown and at the time of the
evidentiary hearing, active warrants existed for his arrest.
Father was served by publication.
unsuccessful progress on case plan
This family came to the attention of the Agency on June 23,
2017. An ongoing caseworker was assigned and identified
concerns of substance abuse and domestic violence with
Mother. Specifically, Mother was the victim of domestic
violence perpetrated by her paramour. The case plan identified the
following issues for Mother: substance abuse, unemployment,
mental health, poor parenting, and domestic violence.
Mother at first seemed to do well on the case plan. She
claimed she was no longer in a relationship with the former
paramour, who had subjected her to domestic violence and
substance abuse. Mother completed an AOD evaluation and was
given further recommendations to pursue with LAPP. Mother
failed to complete required mental health and domestic
violence assessments, however.
The caseworker learned Mother was not forthcoming about her
relationship status; she was still involved with the
paramour, who was charged with domestic violence against her
for an incident which occurred after the relationship
Mother told the caseworker she lived alone, but upon
unannounced visits to her residence, unidentified men would
come to the door and state Mother was not home. One of these
men identified himself as a maintenance man, but the same man
was present on a different home visit, and was found alone in
the home with his shirt off. The caseworker also observed men
described as friends drinking alcoholic beverages in the home
and determined they were not suitable to be around the
Mother missed scheduled appointments with the caseworker.
Upon unannounced visits to the residence, Mother's car
was present but no one answered the door.
Mother did not alleviate the Agency's concerns with her
substance abuse, despite initially attending counseling and
testing clean. Mother admitted she relapsed with
methamphetamine and could not or would not admit when her
last use was. Mother stopped attending substance abuse
treatment and was discharged for failure to attend. She
tested positive for methamphetamine and sometimes refused to
screen altogether. She attended visitation with the children
visibly under the influence.
Mother did obtain and maintain employment, but blamed her
work hours for the inability to attend substance abuse and
mental health treatment. Mother maintained housing throughout
the case, but the residence was a concern due to the
unidentified men noted supra and because Mother did not have
separate bedrooms for the children.
Grandfather requests home study
At the outset of the Agency's involvement with the
family, the caseworker asked for possible kinship placements
and Mother offered none, stating no one was willing or
available to care for the children. When it became evident
that Mother would not successfully complete the case plan and
the Agency would ...