In re S.H. and N.W., Minors
Secreia R., Respondent-Appellant. The People of the State of Illinois, Petitioner-Appellee,
23 order filed January 16, 2018
to publish allowed February 15, 2018
from the Circuit Court of Peoria County, Nos. 17-JA-3,
17-JA-4; the Hon. Katherine S. Gorman Hubler, Judge,
Snyder, of Peoria, for appellant
Brady, State's Attorney, of Peoria (Patrick Delfino,
Lawrence M. Bauer, and Thomas D. Arado, of State's
Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor's Office, of counsel), for
M. Natonek, of Peoria, guardian ad litem.
PRESIDING JUSTICE CARTER delivered the judgment of the court,
with opinion. Justices Schmidt and Wright concurred in the
judgment and opinion.
1 Respondent, Secreia R., appeals, arguing the circuit court
failed to sufficiently articulate a basis for its
determination that respondent was unfit. We affirm.
3 The State filed two petitions for adjudication of wardship
regarding respondent's children, S.H. and N.W. However,
before discussing these petitions, we first discuss the
related petitions that were previously filed regarding
respondent's other children. Those petitions were pending
and ongoing at the time the State filed the wardship
petitions that are the subject of this appeal.
4 The petitions for adjudication of wardship in the related
cases alleged that respondent's other children were
neglected in that they lived in an injurious environment. The
petitions alleged several instances of domestic violence
between respondent and Lance R. (N.W.'s father), which
occurred in the presence of the children. The petitions also
alleged Lance's criminal history including drug
convictions and domestic violence convictions.
5 The adjudicatory order entered in the related cases
reflected that the children were found neglected due to an
injurious environment, and the dispositional order shows that
respondent was found unfit based on the allegations of past
domestic violence and respondent's attitude as to how it
affected the children. Respondent was ordered to obtain a
drug and alcohol assessment, perform two random drug drops
per month, and complete counseling to address several issues,
including choice of partner, relational conflict, and anger.
This cause continued to permanency review hearings and
remained ongoing at the time the State filed the petitions
that are the subject of this appeal.
6 The petitions for adjudication of wardship that are the
subject of this case alleged the same instances of domestic
abuse between respondent and Lance that were alleged in the
already ongoing proceedings in the earlier cases. However,
the petitions in this case involved respondent's two
other children, S.H. and N.W. The petitions in this case
included the additional allegation that respondent was
previously found unfit as to her other children and that
there had been no subsequent finding of fitness in the other
proceedings. The petitions alleged that respondent had not