Juveniles, separate adjudication and disposition hearings — F.(K.K.) v. Com. of Kentucky (COA 12/19/2008)

F.(K.K.)  v. Com. of Kentucky
Family Law:  Juveniles, separate adjudication and disposition hearings
2008-CA-000478
PUBLISHED: VACATING AND REMANDING
PANEL:  STUJBO PRESIDING; THOMPSON, GUIDUGLI CONCUR
APPEAL FROM FAYETTE CIRCUIT COURT HONORABLE TIMOTHY NEIL PHILPOT, JUDGE
DATE RENDERED: 12/19/2008

The Court vacated and remanded an order committing a juvenile to the Cabinet for Families and Children after she was found in contempt for not following the orders of the court entered after she was adjudicated a status offender for being “beyond control of parent.” The Court first held that the failure to give appellant proper notice of a probable cause and custody hearing required vacating appellant’s commitment to the Cabinet. The Court further held that the trial court erred in denying appellant separate adjudication and disposition hearings as required by KRS 610.080, as only the juvenile, not the Commonwealth, could waive the separate hearings. The Court then held that the fact that the trial court did not make any written findings or state during the hearings what least restrictive alternatives to commitment had been tried, this alone did not require reversal, as the record established that the court had tried less restrictive alternatives, as required by KRS 600.020(35), and that commitment was the only option left. The Court finally held that a disposition made in light of the continuing out of control conduct, the entire record and all of the circumstances, did not amount to the use of commitment as a disposition for contempt. 

Digest from COA Monthly Summaries – Dec.
2008
 

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