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New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services v. D.W.

September 30, 2008

NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
D.W., DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.
IN THE MATTER OF THE GUARDIANSHIP OF F.C.J.E., A MINOR.



On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Hudson County, Docket No. FG-09-154-07.

Per curiam.

RECORD IMPOUNDED

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted September 22, 2008

Before Judges Carchman, Sabatino and Simonelli.

The Division of Youth and Family Services (Division) brought this action, seeking the termination of the parental rights of defendant D.W. to her child, F.C.J.E., born April 11, 2005. Following a non-jury trial, Judge DeCastro rendered a written decision and entered judgment in favor of the Division.*fn1

In this appeal, D.W. raises the following contentions:

POINT I:

THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN CONCLUDING THAT THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE CHILD WOULD BE SERVED BY TERMINATING D.W.'S PARENTAL RIGHTS.

A. THE STATE FAILED TO PROVE, BY CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE, THAT D.W. IS UNWILLING OR UNABLE TO ELIMINATE THE HARM FACING HER CHILD OR IS UNABLE OR UNWILLING TO PROVIDE A SAFE AND STABLE HOME FOR THE CHILD.

B. THE STATE FAILED TO PROVE, BY CLEAR AND CONVINCING EVIDENCE, THAT THE DIVISION HAS MADE REASONABLE EFFORTS TO PROVIDE SERVICES TO HELP THIS PARENT CORRECT THE CIRCUMSTANCES WHICH LED TO HER CHILD'S PLACEMENT OUTSIDE THEIR HOME.

C. TERMINATION OF D.W.'S PARENTAL RIGHTS WILL DO MORE HARM THAN GOOD.

We reject these contentions and affirm.

D.W. has been known to the Division since 1986. However, it was not until 1995 that the Division substantiated abuse and neglect when D.W. gave birth to her second child, who tested positive for drugs at birth. D.W. also tested positive for opiates, cocaine and heroin. The Division removed the ...


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