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08/14/96 C.M. A MINOR DANA L. CORMAN GUARDIAN

August 14, 1996

IN THE INTEREST OF C.M., A MINOR, DANA L. CORMAN, GUARDIAN ADMINISTRATOR OF THE DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES, PETITIONER-APPELLANT, IN THE INTEREST OF J.E.B., A MINOR, DANA L. CORMAN, GUARDIAN ADMINISTRATOR OF THE DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES, PETITIONER-APPELLANT.


Appeal from the Circuit Court of the 21st Judicial Circuit, Kankakee County, Illinois. No. 93-J-10. Honorable John F. Michela, Judge, Presiding. Appeal from the Circuit Court of the 12th Judicial Circuit, Will County, Illinois. No. 95-J-7455. Honorable Vincent J. Cerri, Judge, Presiding.

Released for Publication September 20, 1996.

Honorable William E. Holdridge, Presiding Justice, Honorable Tom M. Lytton, Justice, Honorable Michael P. Mccuskey, Justice. Justice Lytton delivered the opinion of the court. Holdridge, P.j., and McCUSKEY, J., concur.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Lytton

The Honorable Justice LYTTON delivered the opinion of the court:

Public Act 89-21 amended the Juvenile Court Act, limiting the ability of courts to name the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) custodian for certain minors. Finding that these changes did not apply, the trial courts in these consolidated cases awarded DCFS temporary custody of two minors who had been adjudicated abused, neglected or dependent. We reverse and remand for further proceedings.

I. Facts

A. In the Interest of C.M.

C.M. was born on March 14, 1979. On January 12, 1993, his father filed a petition to have him declared a neglected minor after he sexually abused his sister and step-sister while residing with his mother. The petition was later dismissed. C.M. was subsequently charged in a juvenile petition with criminal sexual abuse and aggravated criminal sexual abuse. On July 19, 1993, the trial court found C.M. to be delinquent, placed him on two years probation and ordered him to live with his father.

A juvenile petition for theft was filed against C.M., and a month later, he was placed in the temporary custody of a juvenile detention facility. At the adjudicatory hearing, the court found C.M. delinquent on the theft charge. After the dispositional hearing, he was transferred to the Department of Corrections (DOC). When he was released from the DOC on June 29, 1995, his parents refused custody, and C.M. voluntarily went to Aunt Martha's Youth Service Center, a social service agency.

The Kankakee County State's Attorney filed a temporary custody petition on the grounds that C.M. was an abused, neglected or dependent minor pursuant to sections 2-3 and 2-4 of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 (Act) (705 ILCS 405/2-3, 2-4 (West 1994)). Evidence at the temporary custody hearing showed that C.M.'s parents refused custody due to his criminal behavior. DCFS argued that it was barred from taking custody of C.M. pursuant to Public Act 89-21.

The trial court appointed DCFS temporary guardian, ruling that Public Act 89-21 barred commitment of juveniles to DCFS only in pending delinquency petitions, not in neglect petitions. DCFS filed a petition for leave to appeal pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 306(a)(5) (155 Ill. 2d R. 306(a)(5)). In November 1995, this court granted DCFS's petition for leave to appeal.

B. In the Interest of J.E.B.

J.E.B. was born on February 4, 1982, and lived with his mother and two brothers in Utah, where he was physically and sexually abused by his older brother. In February 1995, J.E.B. went to live in Council Bluffs, Iowa, with his father, his father's girlfriend and her two sons, ages six and eight. They subsequently moved to Joliet, Illinois, where on May 25, 1995, J.E.B. was charged with two counts of criminal sexual assault against the girlfriend's sons. J.E.B. was placed in a juvenile detention facility and was adjudicated delinquent on two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse on July 12, 1995.

J.E.B.'s father, his girlfriend and her two sons moved back to Iowa on July 25, 1995; the father agreed to take custody of J.E.B. after the boy received residential treatment. On August 2, 1995, the Will County State's Attorney filed a temporary custody petition on the grounds that J.E.B. was a neglected or dependent minor pursuant to sections 2-3 and 2-4 of the Act. At a custody hearing held on August 25, 1995, the trial court ...


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