Highland County Juvenile Court and Probate Court Judge Kevin Greer issued a decision and entry of adjudication and disposition Tuesday, Dec. 8 in a case involving two children under age 2 allegedly found abused, neglected and dependent after a hearing Friday, Dec. 4 in Highland County Juvenile Court.

To read about the hearing, go to: https://highlandcountypress.com/Content/In-The-News/In-The-News/Article/Judge-Greer-set-to-rule-on-alleged-child-abuse-case/2/20/62062.

As previously reported, following a complaint filed in Highland County Juvenile Court Thursday, Sept. 10, Greer granted Highland County Children Services temporary custody of Jacob Perkins and Britney Haynes’ two children – who were 15 months old and 3 months old, respectively, at the time of the complaint – on Sept. 14. The judge said at the hearing that the allegations were among the worst he’s seen in his tenure as judge. The judge also said that he was unsure if he had ever issued an order of “zero” contact for both parents, but he did so at that hearing.

Haynes, 18, of Hillsboro was indicted by a Highland County grand jury Oct. 6 and charged with two second-degree felonies (felonious assault and endangering children) and one third-degree felony (a second charge of endangering children). She is currently out on bond, and a jury trial is currently scheduled for March.

Based on the evidence presented in the adjudication hearing Friday, Greer “found both children to be abused, neglected and dependent.”

“Based on the factual findings … the Court finds by clear and convincing evidence the mother caused the injuries/fractures/bruises to both [children],” Greer wrote. “In addition, she elected not to have the same treated or either child examined by a medical professional. The home in which she resided with the children was filthy, unsanitary, cockroach-infested and created a dangerous and unhealthy environment for the children. The mother elected not to personally appear to defend/explain the allegations within this action.”

The following dispositional orders have been made by the court, according to Tuesday’s decision:

• Temporary custody of both children has been granted to the Highland County Department of Job & Family Services, Children Services Division, until Sept. 10, 2021 “subject to further order of the Court.”

• The no-contact order will continue for both parents.

• Greer has ordered the filing of an amended case plan.

“The Court finds that all reasonable efforts have been by the Agency to prevent removal of both children from the homes of their parents and that return of either child to the home of either parent at this time would be contrary to the best interest and welfare of the children,” the decision says.

According to the decision, the Court found both children to be “abused, neglected and dependent” in violation of the following:

• R.C. 2151.031(B), for the reason the mother created a substantial risk to the health or safety of both children by violating a duty of care, protection and support;

• R.C. 2151.031(C), in that both children exhibited evidence of physical or mental injury inflicted other than by accidental means or injury at variance with history given for said injury;

• R.C. 2151.031(D): due to acts of the parents both children suffer from physical or mental injury that harms or threatens to harm the health or welfare of the children;

• R.C. 2151.03(A)(2), for the reason both children lack adequate parental care due to the faults or habits of their parents;

• R.C. 2151.03(A)(3), in that the parents neglected or refused to provide the proper or necessary substance, medical, surgical care or treatment or other care necessary for the health, morals or well-being of the children; and

• R.C. 2151.04(A) in that the condition or environment of the children is such as to warrant the state in assuming their guardianship.

Greer also ordered “all exhibits admitted as being properly identified and authenticated.” Following Friday’s hearing, defense attorney Jason Despetorich had objected to admitting photos of a text conversation between Haynes and her stepfather, as well as a certified copy of medical records from Dayton Children’s Hospital for each child. The medical records were used by expert witness Dr. Jonathan Thackeray during his testimony Friday.

“The Court notes that Agency Exhibits 1 and 2 [the medical records] were admitted over the objection of the mother,” Greer wrote. “The Court has not considered the content of the reports in the Adjudicatory phase of this action. However, both Exhibits were properly certified as required and identified by Dr. Thackeray as part of the electronic record from Dayton Children’s Hospital for both [the 3-month-old] (Exhibit 1) and [the 15-month-old] (Exhibit 2). Dr. Thackeray was permitted to review and rely on said record in providing his testimony in this action and was cross-examined concerning the same.”