In re M.G., 031819 OHCA3, 1-18-54

Docket Nº:1-18-54
Opinion Judge:WILLAMOWSKI, J.
Party Name:IN RE: M.G., ADJUDICATED DEPENDENT CHILD. [MARCUS GANT - APPELLANT]
Attorney:F. Stephen Chamberlain for Appellant. Sarah N. Newland for Appellee.
Judge Panel:SHAW and PRESTON, J.J., concur.
Case Date:March 18, 2019
Court:Court of Appeals of Ohio
 
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2019-Ohio-906

IN RE: M.G., ADJUDICATED DEPENDENT CHILD.

[MARCUS GANT - APPELLANT]

No. 1-18-54

Court of Appeals of Ohio, Third District, Allen

March 18, 2019

Appeal from Allen County Common Pleas Court Juvenile Division Trial Court No. 2017-JG-34159.

APPEARANCES:

F. Stephen Chamberlain for Appellant.

Sarah N. Newland for Appellee.

OPINION

WILLAMOWSKI, J.

{¶1} Father-appellant Marcus Gant ("Marcus") appeals the judgment of the Juvenile Division of the Allen County Court of Common Pleas, arguing that the trial court erred by not awarding legal custody of his child, MG, to MG's paternal grandmother. For the reasons set forth below, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

Facts and Procedural History

{¶2} Both of MG's parents are currently incarcerated. Doc. 116. Her mother was sentenced to six years in prison for the crimes of conspiracy to trafficking in persons and promoting prostitution. Doc. 116. Her father, Marcus, was sentenced to four years in prison for conspiracy to trafficking in persons and promoting prostitution. Doc. 116. Consequently, on January 4, 2017, the trial court issued a shelter care order that placed MG with the Allen County Children Services Board ("ACCSB"). Doc. 1. The magistrate found that "it is not in the best interest of [MG] to remain in the Mother's custody, and the minor child cannot be placed in the Alleged Father's custody." Doc. 1. The magistrate further found that MG's half-sibling had already been removed from the custody of MG's mother and placed into the permanent custody of the ACCSB in 2016. Doc. 1.

{¶3} Subsequent to an adjudicatory hearing on February 13, 2017, the trial court found MG to be a dependent child. Doc. 39. The trial court then placed MG into the temporary custody of the ACCSB after a dispositional hearing on March 20, 2017. Doc. 43. On August 22, 2017, Marcus's mother, Gina Gant ("Gina"), filed a motion to intervene that was later denied on March 27, 2018. Doc. 52, 54, 107. On August 23, 2017, the ACCSB filed a motion requesting the modification of the prior order of temporary custody; the termination of the court ordered services of the ACCSB; and the award of legal custody to MG's foster parents, Amanda and Joshua Crouch ("the Crouches"), who have custody of MG's half-sibling. Doc. 56. Tr. 11. On January 8, 2018, Marcus filed a motion for legal custody. Doc. 81.

{¶4} Both of MG's parents requested that MG be placed with Gina. Doc. 116. On April 13, 2018, the Juvenile Division held an annual review hearing and addressed the issues raised by these motions. Tr. 1. Doc. 131. Following the hearing, the magistrate issued a decision that granted the ACCSB's motion to modify the prior dispositional order of the trial court; added the Crouches as parties to this action; and dismissed Marcus's motion for...

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