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Name: In re Jonathan B.
Case #: B258513
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 03/13/2015

Reversal is appropriate for jurisdictional finding that lacked substantial evidence as to mother’s failure to protect. Following an incident of domestic violence, mother immediately called police and obtained a restraining order. She said that there had only been one prior incident five years earlier, and there was nothing she could have done to prevent the assault by father. The Department filed a petition alleging that the minors were endangered due to father’s violent outbursts and mother’s failure to protect them because she allowed access to the minors by father. The juvenile court sustained the petition, ordered the minors to remain with mother, and continued father’s unmonitored visits with them. On appeal, mother contended that the jurisdictional findings against her were not supported by substantial evidence. The appellate court agreed and reversed the orders. At the time of the violent conduct by father, mother had been living apart from him. She had no reason to predict that father would assault her. The evidence did not show that she would fail to protect the children, as she took the proper actions immediately after father attacked her. This case is distinguishable from In re Giovanni F. (2010) 184 Cal.App.4th 594, because in that case the violence was foreseeable, and mother continued to live with father after being aware of his violent conduct.