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Name: In re I.R.
Case #: B307093
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 02/24/2021

An isolated incident of domestic violence constituted insufficient evidence to justify removal under Welfare and Institutions Code section 361, subdivision (c)(1) where father no longer lived with or communicated with mother and did not display violent behavior outside of the relationship with mother. Dependency proceedings were initiated following an incident of domestic violence where father slapped mother. Following the incident, father moved out of the home. Father was not immediately cooperative but did sign up for a domestic violence course following the detention of I.R. Father had no criminal history and did not display violent behavior outside of the relationship with mother. I.R. was placed with mother and removed from father. Father and minor appealed, and the appellate court reversed the dispositional order. The sole source of potential danger to I.R. while in father’s care, that is supported in the record, derives from his history of domestic violence with mother. Nothing in the record suggested father had ever been violent or aggressive outside the context of his relationship with mother. The record did not reflect any contact between father and mother since I.R.’s detention. Neither mother nor father expressed an intention to reconcile their relationship and there was no demonstrated unwillingness to stay away from each other. There was no basis to conclude there would be occasion for further domestic violence between the parents and thus there was not substantial evidence upon which the court could conclude that father posed a danger to minor.