FROM THE MISSISSIPPI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, CHICKASAWBA
DISTRICT. NO. 47BJV-17-126. HONORABLE RALPH WILSON, JR.,
Jennifer Oyler Olson, Arkansas Commission for Parent Counsel,
Firth, Office of Chief Counsel, for appellee.
Chrestman Group, PLLC, by: Keith L. Chrestman, attorney ad
litem for minor child.
PHILLIP T. WHITEAKER, Judge. ABRAMSON and SWITZER, JJ.,
T. WHITEAKER, Judge
Appellant Jamie Carpenter appeals the order of the
Mississippi County Circuit Court terminating her parental
rights to her son, N.H. Carpenter contends that the circuit
court clearly erred in its findings regarding the statutory
grounds for termination, and she also challenges the
court's finding that termination was in N.H.'s best
interest. We affirm.
Factual and Procedural Background
Arkansas Department of Human Services (DHS) removed N.H. from
Carpenter's custody based on allegations of environmental
neglect. At that time, Carpenter and N.H. lived with
Carpenter's mother, whose home was " infested with
roaches and dogs." DHS initiated a dependency-neglect
proceeding, and the court adjudicated N.H.
dependent-neglected on December 14, 2017, on the basis of
environmental neglect. The court ordered Carpenter to comply
with its " standard
welfare orders," which expressly included obtaining and
maintaining clean, safe, and stable housing, and the goal of
the case was established as reunification.
court monitored the proceeding with two review hearings
conducted in March and July 2018. In March, the court noted
that Carpenter " does not have stable or appropriate
housing at this time and is living with a sister who has a
history with the Department." Specifically, the court
found that Carpenter " has moved at least three times
during this case and currently does not have stable or
appropriate housing." In July, the court once again
found Carpenter unfit, noting not only her housing
instability but also a positive drug screen. With respect to
DHS, the court found that it had complied with the case plan
and court orders in that it had provided, referred, or