Dept. of Human Services v. C. J. T.
Case #: A152347
Wollheim, J. for the Court; Schuman, P.J.; and Duncan, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/docs/A152344.pdf
Juvenile Law: Juvenile jurisdiction over a child may be established when the court has sufficient evidence linking past conditions or circumstances endangering the welfare of the child to a current threat of harm to the child.
Mother appealed the juvenile court’s ruling taking jurisdiction over her children. Mother had three children C, T and G. The Department of Human Services (DHS) alleged that each child was within the jurisdiction of the court. The conditions alleged for each child were: (1) that they had been subject to neglect; (2) they had been subject to mental or emotional injury; (3) the father is unable to protect them; and (4) that Mother's use of alcohol and/or marijuana interferes with her ability to parent and presents a threat of harm. At a jurisdictional hearing, the juvenile court granted jurisdiction based solely on the allegation of Mother's use of marijuana. Mother appealed. To establish juvenile jurisdiction over Mother's children the court must have evidence linking Mother's past marijuana use to a current risk of harm to the children. On appeal, the Court found that there was no evidence that Mother was on marijuana at the present time nor a nexus between Mother's past marijuana use and a current threat of harm to the children. Reversed.