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New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services v. N.K.

April 13, 2009

NEW JERSEY DIVISION OF YOUTH AND FAMILY SERVICES, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
N.K., DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.
IN THE MATTER OF THE GUARDIANSHIP OF S.K., A MINOR.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division, Family Part, Union County, FN-20-171-06.

Per curiam.

RECORD IMPOUNDED

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted March 4, 2009

Before Judges Lihotz and Messano.

Following a fact-finding hearing in this Title 30 litigation filed by the Division of Youth and Family Services (D.Y.F.S.) against defendant N.K. and his paramour, S.J., the trial judge concluded that defendant had "abused" the couple's infant daughter, S.K., who was born on November 7, 2002. The judge's June 12, 2006 order specifically determined that defendant had [F]ailed to provide appropriate supervision and guardianship by exposing the child to domestic violence he perpetrated on the child's mother and by failing to maintain appropriate boundaries, i[.]e., by routinely sleeping with the child in his bed and by inappropriate and bizarre behavior[,] e[.]g[.,] the extreme attention he paid to the child's vaginal area.

Although the litigation was ultimately terminated at D.Y.F.S.'s request, and defendant's parental rights to his daughter were not severed, defendant appeals the finding of abuse.

He raises the following points for our consideration:

POINT I

THE DIVISION DID NOT PROVE ABUSE OR NEGLECT BY A PREPONDERANCE OF THE COMPETENT, MATERIAL AND RELEVANT EVIDENCE.

POINT II

THE LAW GUARDIAN HAD A CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND SHOULD HAVE BEEN DISQUALIFIED TO REPRESENT S.K. (Not Raised Below)

POINT III

THE LAW GUARDIAN FAILED TO PROPERLY REPRESENT THE BEST INTERESTS OF S.K. IN THIS PROCEEDING.

POINT IV

THE DIVISION SHOULD BE REQUIRED TO REMOVE [DEFENDANT] FROM THE ...


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