IN RE KENDALL M. - Articles

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Posted by: Karen Belcher on May 29, 2018

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Greta Locklear, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Brittany M.

Attorneys 2:

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael C. Polovich, Assistant Attorney General; for the appellee, Tennessee Department of Children’s Services.

Judge(s): DINKINS

Kendall M. was born in January 2016; she tested positive for amphetamines at birth and was placed in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit where she was diagnosed with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome and suffered from withdrawal symptoms. Upon her release from the hospital, she was placed with foster parents, in whose care she has remained. A proceeding to have her declared dependent and neglected was initiated by the Department of Children’s Services and permanency plans developed in May and October of 2016. In March of 2017 the Department filed a petition to terminate the parental rights of Kendall’s Mother on the grounds of abandonment by an incarcerated parent and substantial noncompliance with the permanency plans; following a hearing, the court granted the petition and terminated Mother’s rights on both grounds. Mother appeals the termination of her rights on the ground of substantial noncompliance with the permanency plans and the holding that termination of her rights was in the best interest of Kendall. Upon our review, we conclude that there is clear and convincing evidence to support the termination of her rights on both grounds, and the finding that termination of Mother’s rights is in Kendall’s best interest; accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.