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Most Recent Court of Appeals Summaries

For summaries from opinions prior to August, 2018, view PDF versions here

Opinion Summaries

Case No. 20-0555:  Chico Mario Newman v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 20-0555

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Des Moines County, John M. Wright, Judge.  APPEAL DISMISSED.  Heard by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (5 pages)

            Chico Newman appeals the denial of his petition for postconviction relief.  Because Newman died while this appeal was pending, the State moved to dismiss on mootness grounds.  Rebutting, Newman’s counsel contends collateral financial claims survived Newman’s death.  OPINION HOLDS: Newman’s appeal did not abate upon his death.  But without an estate or personal representative to substitute as party, there is no party to pursue these issues.  Lacking a remaining controversy, all claims are now moot.  And, because the public-interest exception does not apply on these facts, we dismiss.

Case No. 21-0028:  Joel Enrique Herrarte, Jr. v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0028

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Wapello County, Lucy J. Gamon, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Tabor, P.J., Badding, J., and Blane, S.J.  Opinion by Blane, S.J.  (9 pages)

            Herrarte appeals the denial of his postconviction-relief application.  He argues that his criminal trial counsel was ineffective for (1) incorrectly arguing the evidence supported a conviction of kidnapping in the third degree, of which he was convicted, when it was not a lesser included offense of kidnapping in the second degree, the crime charged, and (2) failing to object to the court finding him guilty of third-degree kidnapping.  OPINION HOLDS: We find, applying Iowa Rule of Criminal Procedure 2.22(3), since the kidnapping statute established three degrees of the crime, the trial court properly determined Herrarte guilty of kidnapping in the third degree.  Herrarte’s criminal trial counsel was not ineffective in arguing the court find Herrarte guilty of kidnapping in the third degree as trial strategy, and in not objecting to the court finding him guilty of third-degree kidnapping.  We find counsel did not fail in an essential duty and affirm the denial of postconviction relief.

Case No. 21-0269:  State of Iowa v. Jarrod Michael Jacobsen

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0269

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Plymouth County, Daniel P. Vakulskas, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., Tabor, J., and Scott, S.J.  Opinion by Vaitheswaran, P.J.  (5 pages)

            Jarrod Jacobsen appeals his conviction for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, second offense.  Jacobsen challenges the district court’s denial of his motion to suppress.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the district court’s denial of Jacobsen’s suppression motion.

Case No. 21-0496:  State of Iowa v. Shane Timothy Bakke

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0496

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Dickinson County, David C. Larson, District Associate Judge.  REVERSED AND REMANDED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., Chicchelly, J., and Potterfield, S.J.  Opinion by Potterfield, S.J.  (10 pages)

            Shane Bakke challenges the denial of his motion to suppress, arguing the stop of his utility vehicle (UTV) by a conservation officer, which was not supported by reasonable suspicion or probable cause, violated his constitutional rights—notwithstanding Iowa Code section 321I.27 (2020), which gives statutory authority for the stop.  OPINION HOLDS: The conservation officer’s stop of Bakke’s UTV was not supported by probable cause or reasonable suspicion, and the statute giving authority to conduct stops in section 321I.27 cannot transform the stop into a reasonable, constitutional action.  Therefore, the district court should have granted Bakke’s motion to suppress.  We reverse and remand to the district court for further proceedings.

Case No. 21-0550:  The Lamar Company, LLC d/b/a Lamar Outdoor Advertising v. City of Des Moines, Iowa, City of Des Moines, Building and Fire Code Board of Appeals and City of Des Moines Zoning Board of Adjustment

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0550

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Paul D. Scott, Judge.  REVERSED AND REMANDED WITH DIRECTIONS.  Heard by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (16 pages)

            Lamar Outdoor Advertising appeals the district court’s denial of its writ of certiorari alleging the City of Des Moines Zoning Board of Adjustment and Building and Fire Code Board of Appeals erroneously denied its application to convert five existing static billboards around the city to digital boards.  On appeal, Lamar alleges the Building Board lacked jurisdiction to deny his appeal under the new zoning ordinance and the city and its boards acted illegally in interpreting the grandfather clause.  OPINION HOLDS: On the first point, the Zoning Board’s independent finding that Lamar’s application was incomplete resolves any jurisdictional question.  On the second point, we agree the Zoning Board acted illegally in denying Lamar’s sign permits based on the language of the grandfather clause.  Thus, we reverse and remand for the district court to enter an order sustaining Lamar’s petition for writ of certiorari.

Case No. 21-0602:  Tony Lee Lopez v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0602

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Scott D. Rosenberg, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Bower, C.J., Schumacher, J., and Doyle, S.J.  Opinion by Bower, C.J.  (3 pages)

            Tony Lee Lopez appeals the dismissal of his application for postconviction relief.  OPINION HOLDS:  We affirm.

Case No. 21-0620:  State of Iowa v. Isaiah Steide

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0620

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Lawrence P. McLellan, Judge.  AFFIRMED IN PART, VACATED IN PART, AND REMANDED.  Considered by Tabor, P.J., and Greer and Ahlers, JJ.  Opinion by Ahlers, J. (8 pages)

            Isaiah Steide appeals his convictions for dominion and control of a firearm by a felon and trafficking in a stolen weapon.  OPINION HOLDS: We find sufficient evidence to support Steide’s conviction for dominion and control of a firearm by a felon.  We find the evidence insufficient to prove Steide knowingly acquired a stolen firearm.  Therefore, we affirm Steide’s conviction and sentence for dominion and control of a firearm by a felon, and we vacate his conviction and sentence for trafficking a stolen weapon.  We remand for entry of judgment of acquittal on the trafficking-a-stolen-weapon charge.

Case No. 21-0655:  Shiro Edward Remeliik v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0655

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Marshall County, Amy M. Moore, Judge. AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., Chicchelly, J., and Gamble, S.J.  Opinion by Chicchelly, J.  (7 pages)

            Shiro Edward Remeliik appeals from the dismissal of his application for postconviction relief (PCR).  He alleges the untimeliness of his application is overcome by a new ground of law and that his PCR counsel provided ineffective assistance.  OPINION HOLDS: Because Remeliik fails to establish an exception to the statutory time bar or ineffective assistance of PCR counsel, the district court properly dismissed his PCR application. 

Case No. 21-0727:  Tracy Even and All Purpose Storage, LLC v. Title Services Corporation

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0727

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, Linda Fangman, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Heard by May, P.J., and Schumacher and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (10 pages)

            Tracy Even and All Purpose Storage, LLC (APS) appeal a summary judgment ruling in favor of Title Services Corporation (TSC) of their negligent misrepresentation claim relating to TSC’s failure to identify an easement to land purchased by Even.  OPINION HOLDS: TSC owed no duty of care to APS.  Because Even transferred ownership of the land to APS, Even could not claim lost future profits related to a storage business run by APS on the land.  And Even’s claim for lost opportunity could not go forward because he provided no evidence as to how he would have renegotiated the purchase price of the land had the easement been disclosed.

Case No. 21-0758:  Dylan Andrew Karns v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0758

No. 21-0758   KARNS v. STATE

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Emmet County, Don E. Courtney, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by Greer, J.  (9 pages)

            Dylan Karns appeals the denial of his application for postconviction relief (PCR).  He claims trial counsel provided ineffective assistance, arguing counsel breached an essential duty by failing to investigate Karns’s mental health and that he was prejudiced because, if counsel had done so, counsel would have learned Karns was not competent to enter the guilty pleas.  On appeal, Karns argues for the first time that his PCR counsel provided ineffective assistance by failing to obtain expert testimony to establish that Karns’s specific mental disorders—combined with the failure to take his medication—affected his competency at the time of the guilty pleas.  OPINION HOLDS: Without a medical expert making the connection for us between Karns’s mental conditions and his competency (or lack thereof), we cannot say trial counsel provided ineffective assistance.  And because the record on appeal is inadequate for us to address Karns’s claim PCR counsel provided ineffective assistance, we do not decide it.  We affirm the denial of Karns’s PCR application.

Case No. 21-0840:  State of Iowa v. Robert Jay Henry, Jr.

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0840

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Jefferson County, Daniel Kitchen, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Vaitheswaran, P.J.  (3 pages)

            Robert Henry Jr. appeals the sentences imposed following his convictions for assault and assault on persons engaged in certain occupations.  OPINION HOLDS: Although the reasons for the sentence were brief, we conclude they did not amount to an abuse of discretion.  We affirm.

Case No. 21-0887:  Jeff M. Mueggenberg, Jeanne M. Mueggenberg and Julie R. Martin v. Jim J. Mueggenberg and Janet K. Mueggenberg

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0887

No. 21-0887   MUEGGENBERG v. MUEGGENBERG

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Crawford County, Duane E. Hoffmeyer, Judge.  AFFIRMED IN PART, REVERSED IN PART, AND REMANDED.  Heard by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J.  (20 pages)

            Defendants appeal a district court ruling on a petition for partition in kind filed by the plaintiffs.  The defendants argue the court’s division of the property was inequitable, the court erred in taxing the plaintiffs’ attorney fees as costs, and the court erred in its overall assessment of costs.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the district court’s division of property and taxation of a reasonable fee in favor of plaintiffs’ attorney as costs.  But because the court taxed all costs against the defendants irrespective of whether all costs were attributable to contests in the proceeding, we vacate the assessment of costs and remand to the court to tax any costs arising from contests to the losing contestant unless otherwise ordered by the court, with any remaining costs taxed proportionately among the parties.

Case No. 21-0893:  Miltner Insurance Services, LLC v. Casey M. Roberts

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0893

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Adams County, Bradley McCall, Judge.  REVERSED AND REMANDED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Schumacher and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J.  (8 pages)

            Miltner Insurance Services, LLC (Miltner) appeals a district court decision denying its breach-of-contract claim against Casey Roberts in relation to a non-piracy agreement.  OPINION HOLDS: We find the district court’s denial of relief under Miltner’s breach-of-contract claim was error.  We reverse and remand the case to the court to determine the damages and other relief to which Miltner is entitled.

Case No. 21-0899:  Liberko v. Rath

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0899

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Linn County, Fae Hoover Grinde, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Bower, C.J., Ahlers, J., and Blane, S.J.  Chicchelly, J., takes no part.  Opinion by Blane, S.J.  (4 pages)

            Nathan Rath appeals the default judgment and damages against him arguing plaintiff Nicholas Liberko did not prove his piercing-the-corporate-veil claim against him.  OPINION HOLDS: Rath failed to preserve his issue for appeal.  We affirm.

Case No. 21-0919:  State of Iowa v. Raysean H. Nelson

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0919

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Coleman J. McAllister, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., Chicchelly, J., and Carr, S.J.  Opinion by Carr, S.J.  (6 pages)

            Raysean Nelson appeals his conviction for criminal gang participation enhanced as a habitual offender.  OPINION HOLDS: He asserts that there was insufficient evidence to show he participated in a street gang or was an active member of one.  We find the evidence was sufficient to support a finding by a jury that Nelson actively participated in a gang.  We affirm.

Case No. 21-0951:  State of Iowa v. Dukan Gatwech Wuol

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0951

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Woodbury County, Tod Deck, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Tabor, P.J., Ahlers, J., and Scott, S.J.  Opinion by Ahlers, J.  (8 pages)

            Dukan Wuol appeals the denial of his motion to suppress and the exclusion of evidence at his suppression hearing.  OPINION HOLDS: The district court properly denied Wuol’s motion to suppress as there was reasonable suspicion to stop his vehicle.  The evidence offered at his suppression hearing was properly excluded under Iowa Rule of Evidence 5.608(b).

Case No. 21-0998:  Matthew v. State

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-0998

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Washington County, Crystal S. Cronk, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Heard by Bower, C.J., and Schumacher and Ahlers, JJ.  Opinion by Ahlers, J.  (10 pages)

            In a wrongful death action stemming from a house fire, the administrators of the estate contend summary judgment should not have been granted in favor of the State because the State is not protected by discretionary-function immunity.  OPINION HOLDS: Summary judgment was properly granted as both prongs of the discretionary-function-immunity test are satisfied.

Case No. 21-1008:  State of Iowa v. William Lee Coleman

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1008

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Adams County, Elisabeth Reynoldson, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Vaitheswaran, P.J.  (8 pages)

            William Coleman appeals his convictions for interference with official acts and assault on a peace officer, contending the district court erred in denying his second suppression motion and in refusing to submit his requested jury instruction on a defense of justification.  OPINION HOLDS: Upon our review, we affirm.

Case No. 21-1124:  Deanna Alissa Fries v. Brooks Salomon Barney

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1124

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Sarah Crane, Judge.  AFFIRMED AND REMANDED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (11 pages)

            A father appeals the grant of a motion to vacate a provision of a custody order granting him the right of first refusal when the custodial parent, the mother, needs childcare.  The father also appeals the district court’s denial of his application to hold the mother in contempt for violating this provision.  OPINION HOLDS: Because substantial evidence supports the factual findings of the district court that the father and his attorney perpetrated extrinsic fraud in the execution of the custody stipulation, we affirm the district court’s vacation of that provision.  We also find no abuse of discretion in the district court’s denial of the contempt application.  The added provision was too vague to enforce as written.  Finally, we find the mother is entitled to an award of attorney fees and remand for a determination of a reasonable amount. 

Case No. 21-1177:  Jesse Lee McElroy v. Misty Jo Sheedy

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1177

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Wapello County, Myron Gookin, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (5 pages)

            A father appeals the jurisdictional dismissal of his modification petition in a child custody action.  OPINION HOLDS: Because the child does not have a significant connection to Iowa and substantial evidence regarding the child’s welfare is likely not available in this state, the district court correctly dismissed the petition for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

Case No. 21-1300:  State of Iowa v. Deanthony Allen Echols

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1300

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Tom Reidel, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (5 pages)

            Deanthony Echols appeals his sentence for two counts of domestic abuse assault and harassment in the first degree, alleging the district court abused its sentencing discretion in not granting probation.  OPINION HOLDS: Because the court weighed many factors, including the need to deter future violence against the two victims, we find a proper exercise of discretion and affirm. 

Case No. 21-1390:  Dutton, Daniels, Hines, Kalkhoff, Cook and Swanson, P.L.C. v. Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1390

            Certiorari to the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, Linda M. Fangman, Judge.  WRIT SUSTAINED AND CASE REMANDED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Schumacher and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (17 pages)

            A law firm seeks certiorari review of a district court order imposing monetary sanctions.  OPINION HOLDS: We find the district court did not abuse its discretion in concluding a sanction was appropriate.  But we do not agree with all of the grounds on which the district court based its decision to sanction.  So we remand with instructions to reconsider the amount of the sanction.

Case No. 21-1500:  In the Interest of S.L., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1500

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Wapello County, William S. Owens, Associate Juvenile Judge.  AFFIRMED ON BOTH APPEALS.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by Chicchelly, J.  (4 pages)

            A mother and a father separately appeal the termination of their parental rights to one child.  OPINION HOLDS: There is no evidence on which to find that the need for removal will no longer exist if the parents are granted additional time.  Termination is in the child’s best interests, and the mother failed to show termination will be detrimental to the child.

Case No. 21-1689:  Thuan Dinh Tran v. State of Iowa

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1689

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Mark R. Lawson, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (2 pages)

            Thuan Tran appeals the dismissal of his application for postconviction relief.  OPINION HOLDS: Tran’s application was filed beyond the three-year statute of limitations found in Iowa Code section 822.3 (2021).  And we do not adopt equitable tolling.

Case No. 21-1836:  In the Interest of J.G., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1836

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Marshall County, Paul G. Crawford, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., Tabor, J., and Potterfield, S.J.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (12 pages)

            Manuel, the father of eleven-year-old J.G., appeals the private termination of his parental rights under Iowa Code chapter 600A (2021).  He contends J.G.’s mother, Eliana, denied him visitation with the child.  OPINION HOLDS: We find Manuel abandoned the child under Iowa Code chapter 600A and affirm termination of his parental rights. 

Case No. 21-1923:  State of Iowa v. Justin Paul Parker

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 21-1923

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Adams County, Dustria A. Relph, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J. (5 pages)

            Justin Parker appeals the sentence imposed upon his criminal conviction, arguing the court considered improper sentencing factors.  OPINION HOLDS: We conclude Parker has not established the sentence imposed was based on improper factors or otherwise amounts to an abuse of discretion.  We therefore affirm the sentence imposed.

Case No. 22-0002:  In the Interest of J.W., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0002

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Story County, Stephen A. Owen, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by May, P.J.  (5 pages)

            A father appeals the termination of his parental rights.  He challenges the statutory grounds authorizing termination and claims termination is not in the child’s best interest.  OPINION HOLDS: The child could not be safely returned to the father’s care, and termination is in the child’s best interest.

Case No. 22-0413:  In the Interest of R.O., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0413

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Wapello County, William S. Owens, Associate Juvenile Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by Chicchelly, J.  (5 pages)

            A father appeals the termination of his parental rights to his child under Iowa Code chapter 600A (2021).  OPINION HOLDS: Clear and convincing evidence shows the father, who has neither had contact with the child or the mother nor provided for the child’s support in six years, has abandoned the child.  Because termination is in the child’s best interests, we affirm.

Case No. 22-0514:  In the Interest of J.M. and L.M., Minor Children

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0514

No. 22-0514   IN RE J.M.

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Madison County, Kevin Parker, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J.  (12 pages)

            A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her two children under Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(e) and (l) (2021).  She attacks each of the three steps in the termination framework, argues the court should have exercised the less-restrictive alternative involving placing the children in the father’s custody, and asserts she should have been granted more time to work toward reunification.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the termination of the mother’s parental rights. 

 

Case No. 22-0579:  In the Interest of C.R., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0579

No. 22-0579   IN RE C.R.

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Black Hawk County, David F. Staudt, Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J.  (5 pages)

            A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her child.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the termination of the mother’s parental rights. 

Case No. 22-0589:  In the Interest of K.A., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0589

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Scott County, Korie Talkington, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Vaitheswaran, P.J.  (4 pages)

            A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her child, contending the court “should have chosen to place the child in a relative guardianship” in lieu of terminating her parental rights.  OPINION HOLDS: On our de novo review, we affirm the termination of the mother’s parental rights to the child.

Case No. 22-0635:  In the Interest of C.A., and J.A.-K., Minor Children

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0635

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Jasper County, Steven J. Holwerda, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED ON BOTH APPEALS.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Vaitheswaran, P.J.  (5 pages)

            A mother and a father separately appeal the termination of their parental rights to two children, contending (1) termination was not in the children’s best interests; (2) guardianship with the paternal grandparents was the better option; and (3) the district court should not have terminated their parental rights in light of the bond they shared with the children as well as the children’s placement with a relative.  The mother additionally asserts she should have been afforded an additional six months to facilitate reunification.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the termination of the parents’ rights to the two children.

Case No. 22-0647:  In the Interest of E.W., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0647

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Pottawattamie County, Eric J. Nelson, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED ON BOTH APPEALS.  Considered by Bower, C.J., and Schumacher and Ahlers, JJ.  Opinion by Ahlers, J.  (10 pages)

            A mother and father both appeal the termination of their parental rights to this child.  OPINION HOLDS: The mother failed to preserve error on her claim that the State failed to prove statutory grounds for termination.  Nevertheless, de novo review of the record shows statutory grounds for terminating the mother’s rights.  Also, the State provided reasonable efforts prior to termination.  The State proved a statutory ground for termination of the father’s rights, and the father did not preserve error on his claim that a permissive exception should preclude termination.  We similarly find that the State provided the father with reasonable efforts prior to termination.

Case No. 22-0683:  In the Interest of S.D., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0683

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Osceola County, Shawna L. Ditsworth, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Badding, J.  (7 pages)

            A father appeals the adjudication of his child as in need of assistance, arguing the juvenile court abused its discretion in allowing a social worker’s testimony about the child’s statements describing the father’s sexual abuse and admitting into evidence a written summary and video recording of a forensic interview.  OPINION HOLDS: We find the State laid sufficient foundation for the challenged exhibits.  We further find the challenged testimony was cumulative of other evidence presented and therefore not prejudicial.  We affirm adjudication.

Case No. 22-0690:  In the Interest of R.H., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0690

No. 22-0690   IN RE R.H.

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Polk County, Susan Cox, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Bower, C.J., and Schumacher and Ahlers, JJ.  Opinion by Schumacher, J.  (10 pages)

A father appeals the termination of his parental rights, claiming there was insufficient evidence to support termination and that termination is not in the child’s best interest.  OPINION HOLDS: We find clear and convincing evidence supports the termination of the father’s parental rights.  We also find termination is in the child’s best interest.  We affirm.  

 

Case No. 22-0727:  In the Interest of H.M., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0727

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Clay County, Andrew Smith, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Badding, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (7 pages)

            A mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to her nine-month-old daughter.  She contends the court terminated her rights only because of her mental-health conditions and that termination was not in the child’s best interests.  OPINION HOLDS: We find her contentions lack merit and affirm. 

Case No. 22-0749:  In the Interest of L.F., Minor Child

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0749

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Story County, Stephen A. Owen, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by Greer, J.  (10 pages)

            The father of a teenaged child appeals the juvenile court’s denial of his request to close the child-in-need-of-assistance case, as recommended by the Iowa Department of Human Services—but opposed by the mother.  The juvenile court considered the motion to close the case at the permanency hearing held in March 2022, but it denied the motion.  The father timely appeals from that order.  OPINION HOLDS: Because we do not find much has changed since our earlier decision and agree with the juvenile court that “sustaining the [permanency] goal and planning for ongoing permanency under the unique circumstances of this case requires the court’s aid,” we affirm the juvenile court’s decision. 

Case No. 22-0761:  In the Interest of P.H. and C.T., Minor Children

Filed Jun 29, 2022

View Opinion No. 22-0761

No. 22-0761   IN RE P.H.

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Woodbury County, Stephanie Forker Parry, District Associate Judge.  AFFIRMED.  Considered by May, P.J., and Greer and Chicchelly, JJ.  Opinion by Greer, J.  (5 pages)

            The mother appeals the termination of her parental rights to C.T. and P.H., born in 2020 and 2021 respectively.  The juvenile court terminated the mother’s rights to both children under Iowa Code section 232.116(1)(b) and (h) (2022).  The mother purports to challenge both of the statutory grounds, maintains termination of her rights is not in the children’s best interests, and asks for additional time to work toward reunification.  OPINION HOLDS: We affirm the termination of the mother’s parental rights.

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