A review hearing to determine that, continued today. Sandra Yi tells us what happened in court.
The hearing continued, with a new judge.
She’ll hear from the couple’s children, later this week.
In April, the first judge assigned to this case, gave Heidi Mattingly a second chance, to get her kids back.
The hearing this week, is to determine how much progress Mattingly has made.
The state says, not enough, and that Mattingly has never recognized she needs help.
The state also argued that, in April, when Mattingly’s father died, she violated a no-contact order between John Daniel Kingston and their children, although a judge had allowed Kingston to attend the funeral.
Last week the state filed a motion to terminate both Kingston and Mattingly’s parental rights.
The judge has not ruled on that.
Mattingly has been in therapy for 9 months, and says she’s complied with all the court orders.
Heidi Mattingly: “We’re still optimistic. We still feel that the best place for my children is home with me, that’s where they’ll be the most loved and most cared for.”
John Daniel Kingston: “I think the children need to go back to their mother as quickly as possible.”
The couple’s children have been in state custody for more than a year.
They were removed from the home, after allegations of abuse and neglect.
The reveiw hearing continues on Thursday and Friday.
Again, the judge will hear from the couple’s children on Thursday.
The Division of Child and Family Services also says, the abuse and neglect among Mattingly’s kids were worse than first thought. DCFS couldn’t elaborate because this is a juvenile case, but says, that information will come out in court.
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