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Name: In re Hadley B.
Case #: G037689
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 4 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 02/26/2007

The trial court erred where it failed to consider acts involving the minor which occurred outside the county in which the dependency petition was filed. The Department and the minor appealed from a juvenile court’s order dismissing a dependency petition after refusing to allow an amendment to include evidence of incidents occurring outside of Orange County. The appellate court agreed, finding that the juvenile court erred in dismissing the dependency petition. General dependency principles compel a conclusion that the juvenile court adjudicating jurisdiction must consider all circumstances affecting the child, no matter where they occur. The focus is on the child, not the parent or political boundaries. Here, the juvenile court refused to hear evidence of the child’s circumstances which occurred outside Orange County, then found the in-county allegations insufficient to sustain the petition. This was error. The court should have considered all relevant information relating to the minor.