State v. Visser, No. 49168

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Iowa
Writing for the CourtHAYS; All Justices concur except SMITH
Citation88 N.W.2d 925,249 Iowa 763
PartiesSTATE of Iowa, Complainant-Appellee, v. Ellen VISSER, Mary Louise Visser, Defendants-Appellants.
Decision Date11 March 1958
Docket NumberNo. 49168

Page 925

88 N.W.2d 925
249 Iowa 763
STATE of Iowa, Complainant-Appellee,
v.
Ellen VISSER, Mary Louise Visser, Defendants-Appellants.
No. 49168.
Supreme Court of Iowa.
March 11, 1958.

Page 926

Life & Davis, Oskaloosa, for appellants.

Garold Heslinga and Charles H. Scholz, County Attys., Oskaloosa, for appellee.

HAYS, Justice.

While for all practical purposes the issues here presented are moot, we will briefly consider them.

Under a juvenile complaint, Ellen Visser, then age 16, and her sister Mary Louise, then age 11, were on July 12, 1956, found to be dependent and neglected children, under Section 232.2, Code 1954, I.C.A., and immediately committed to the State Juvenile Home at Toledo, Iowa. Ellen is now past the age of retention, Section 244.7, Code 1954, I.C.A., and Mary Louise, so we are told by counsel, is now in a private home as authorized by Section 244.10, Code 1954, I.C.A.

While the chief controversy at the trial was the right of the mother to retain custody of these children, the thing most strongly stressed on this appeal is that this court lay down a hard and fast rule as to just what is meant by a 'dependent and neglected child.' Chapter 232, Code 1954, I.C.A., entitled 'Care of neglected, dependent, and delinquent children' was enacted more for the purpose of assisting unfortunate children than for punishing them. In classifying those who were intended to be deemed dependent and neglected, the legislature named six specific circumstances, any one of which, if found to exist, would warrant such a classification. Apparently realizing the futility of attempting to formulate a specific meaning of the term to the exclusion of all others, a course that often might defeat the purpose of the Chapter, it enacted Section 232.2(7). This is as [249 Iowa 765] follows: The term 'dependent child' or 'neglected child' shall mean any child who, for any reason, * * * (7) 'Is living under such other unfit surroundings as bring such child, in the opinion of the court, within the spirit of this Chapter.' Any child living under conditions, though not specifically named, which shocks the conscience of the Chancellor may be so classified. It has wisely placed the answer to the question in the judicial discretion of the Court. In matters of discretion, only where there appears to have been an abuse thereof, will this Court interfere. Svoboda v. Svoboda, 245 Iowa 111, 60 N.W.2d 859; York v. York, 246 Iowa 132, 67 N.W.2d 28; Rahn v. Cramer, 247...

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6 practice notes
  • Morrison, In Interest of, No. 52224
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • July 14, 1966
    ...have pointed out these laws were enacted more for the purpose of assisting unfortunate children than for punishing them. State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 88 N.W.2d 925. It was to insure a child the care, custody and discipline that should be given by its parents. State ex rel. Bruner v. Sande......
  • In re KN, No. 00-1022.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • April 25, 2001
    ...in need of assistance, not to punish them. In re Henderson, 199 N.W.2d 111, 117 (Iowa 1972); see G.R., 348 N.W.2d at 631; State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 764, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926 (1958). Thus, the legislature clearly expressed the underlying policy of chapter 232 to be "[t]he welfare and 625 ......
  • Miller Children, In Interest of, No. 2--56739
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • April 16, 1975
    ...N.W.2d 602, 607 (1964). Bernice contends we may reverse only upon a finding juvenile court abused its discretion, citing State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 765, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926 (1958). See In Interest of Freund, 216 N.W.2d 366, 368--69 (Iowa Our survey of this court's decisions since 1965 un......
  • State v. Harmon
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • January 25, 1961
    ...presents difficulties to the court in determining whether a child is a dependent or something else. An illustration is State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926. In that case the complaint charged that two sisters who were 16 and 11 years of age and who lived with their widowed moth......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
6 cases
  • Morrison, In Interest of, No. 52224
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • July 14, 1966
    ...have pointed out these laws were enacted more for the purpose of assisting unfortunate children than for punishing them. State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 88 N.W.2d 925. It was to insure a child the care, custody and discipline that should be given by its parents. State ex rel. Bruner v. Sande......
  • In re KN, No. 00-1022.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • April 25, 2001
    ...in need of assistance, not to punish them. In re Henderson, 199 N.W.2d 111, 117 (Iowa 1972); see G.R., 348 N.W.2d at 631; State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 764, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926 (1958). Thus, the legislature clearly expressed the underlying policy of chapter 232 to be "[t]he welfare and 625 ......
  • Miller Children, In Interest of, No. 2--56739
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Iowa
    • April 16, 1975
    ...N.W.2d 602, 607 (1964). Bernice contends we may reverse only upon a finding juvenile court abused its discretion, citing State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 765, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926 (1958). See In Interest of Freund, 216 N.W.2d 366, 368--69 (Iowa Our survey of this court's decisions since 1965 un......
  • State v. Harmon
    • United States
    • Supreme Court of Oregon
    • January 25, 1961
    ...presents difficulties to the court in determining whether a child is a dependent or something else. An illustration is State v. Visser, 249 Iowa 763, 88 N.W.2d 925, 926. In that case the complaint charged that two sisters who were 16 and 11 years of age and who lived with their widowed moth......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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