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In re Brandon L.

May 03, 2004

IN RE BRANDON L., A MINOR (THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, PETITIONER-APPELLEE , V. MICHELLE L., RESPONDENT-APPELLANT).


Appeal from the Circuit Court of Ogle County. No. 99-J-6. Honorable John E. Payne, Judge, Presiding.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Kapala

PUBLISHED

Respondent, Michelle L., appeals from the judgment of the circuit court of Ogle County terminating her parental rights to her son Brandon L. We affirm.

I. BACKGROUND

On September 10, 1999, a petition seeking the adjudication of wardship of Brandon pursuant to section 2--4(c) of the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 (Act) (705 ILCS 405/2--4(c) (West 2002)) was filed in the circuit court of Ogle County. The petition stated:

"On or about September 13, 1999 [sic], through no fault, neglect, or lack of concern of his parents, Michelle [L.] and Elmer [M.], said minor was without proper medical care necessary for his well being in that the minor of [sic] July 9, 1999 [,] was diagnosed with peri-orbital rhabdomyosarcoma of the right eye, a potentially lethal cancerous tumor, for which the minor's parents are unable to provide the necessary hygiene and medication upon the minor's discharge from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Children's Hospital."

On January 11, 2000, the trial court adjudicated Brandon a dependent child and placed guardianship with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), with power to place and power to consent to medical treatment if necessary. Respondent and Elmer were ordered to cooperate with DCFS and follow various conditions.

On April 25, 2002, the State brought a petition to terminate the parental rights of respondent and Elmer. The petition alleged that respondent and Elmer were unfit parents pursuant to section 1D of the Adoption Act (750 ILCS 50/1D (West 2002)) and section 2--29 of the Act (705 ILCS 405/2--29 (West 2002)) in that:

"(a) They have failed to maintain a reasonable degree of interest, concern or responsibility as to the welfare of the minor, pursuant to 750 ILCS 50/1 D(b);

(b) They have substantially or repeatedly neglected the minor pursuant to 750 ILCS 50/1 D(d);

(c) They have failed to protect the minor from conditions within the environment injurious to the minor's welfare, pursuant to 750 ILCS 50/1 D(g);

(d) They have demonstrated habitual drunkenness or addiction to drugs other than those prescribed by a physician for at least one year prior to the filing date of the Petition to Terminate Parental Rights, pursuant to 750 ILCS 50/1 D(k);

(e) They have failed to make reasonable efforts to correct the conditions that were the basis for the removal of the minor, pursuant to 750 ILCS 50/1 D(m)(I); and

(f) They have continuously or repeatedly failed to provide the minor with adequate food, clothing, or shelter, ...


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