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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:Christopher Asjes appeals from a judgment terminating the parent-child relationship between he and his son, M.A. HOLDING:Affirmed. Taken in the light most favorable to the findings, the evidence showed that Virginia, M.A.’s mother, through the use of cocaine during her pregnancy, endangered M.A.’s physical well-being before he was even born. Virginia continued to abuse drugs and lived with others, including her husband Jack Hayes, who also abused drugs throughout the time M.A. lived with her. This “lifestyle” created an unstable environment in which M.A.’s physical and emotional needs were neglected. Due to his incarceration in a Texas prison and then in a New Mexico prison, Christopher had no contact with M.A. for the first five years of his life. By no later than 1998, Christopher had knowledge of Virginia’s drug abuse and knew that M.A.’s needs were being neglected by Virginia. Christopher took M.A. into his home for approximately six months and treated him well. However, Christopher did not make any effort to find Virginia and M.A. after she disappeared with him nor did he seek custody of his son. Likewise, Christopher did not attempt to visit with M.A. or maintain any contact with him after he had re-established contact with Virginia. As a result of drug abuse by Virginia and Hayes, M.A.’s living conditions have been unstable throughout most of his life; his physical and emotional needs have been consistently neglected to his detriment. At the time of trial, Christopher had been imprisoned in New Mexico since 1999 and he was not expected to be released until early 2003 or 2004. The department had to remove M.A. from Virginia’s custody in 2001 due to neglect. The summarized evidence is legally sufficient for a reasonable trier of fact to form a firm belief or conviction that Christopher had knowingly placed or knowingly allowed M.A. to remain in conditions or surroundings which endangered his physical or emotional well-being, and that Christopher had engaged in conduct or had knowingly placed M.A. with persons who engaged in conduct that endangered M.A.’s physical or emotional well-being. Christopher’s voluntary criminal behavior and resulting imprisonment has rendered him unable to provide a safe environment for M.A. or to protect M.A. from neglect at the hands of Virginia and Hayes. Even when out of prison, Christopher has done little to protect M.A. from neglectful treatment by Virginia and Hayes. Turning to the issue of factual sufficiency, the court reviews all of the evidence but does not consider it in the light most favorable to the findings. The department did not present overwhelming evidence of M.A.’s living conditions but the record does show that M.A. was not attending school regularly and he often went to school unfed and dirty. Due to their drug addictions, Virginia and Hayes were generally unemployed and did not provide a stable home environment for the children. They obtained finances for the family by pawning or selling items, some of which did not belong to them. Christopher knew that Virginia and Hayes were abusing drugs as he had done drugs with them and he also knew that M.A. had been neglected to the point that he had taken M.A. into his own home. Even so, Christopher knowingly allowed M.A. to remain with Virginia and he made little or no effort to maintain contact with his son. As a result of his repeated incarceration since M.A.’s birth, Christopher has been unable to provide M.A. with a safe environment or protect him from neglect. Consequently, the court concludes that the evidence is factually sufficient for a reasonable trier of fact to form a firm belief or conviction that Christopher knowingly placed or knowingly allowed M.A. to remain in conditions or surroundings which endangered his physical or emotional well-being. Likewise, the evidence is also factually sufficient to support the finding that Christopher had engaged in conduct or had knowingly placed M.A. with persons who engaged in conduct that endangered M.A.’s physical or emotional well-being. OPINION:McClure, J.; Larsen, McClure and Chew, JJ.

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