IN THE MATTER OF THE TERMINATION OF PARENTAL RIGHTS TO: ASA, Minor Child.
STATE OF WYOMING, DEPARTMENT OF FAMILY SERVICES, Appellee (Petitioner). KENNETH BLAKE ANASTOS, Appellant (Respondent),
from the District Court of Carbon County The Honorable Wade
E. Waldrip, Judge
Representing Appellant: Jennifer K. Stone, Schilling &
Winn, PC, Laramie, Wyoming.
Representing Appellee: Peter K. Michael, Attorney General;
Misha Westby, Deputy Attorney General; Jill E. Kucera, Senior
Assistant Attorney General; Wendy S. Ross, Senior Assistant
Attorney General. Argument by Ms. Ross.
Guardian Ad Litem: Dan S. Wilde, Deputy State Public Defender
and Aaron S. Hockman, Chief Trial and Appellate Counsel,
Wyoming Guardian Ad Litem Program. Mr. Wilde appearing but
BURKE, C.J., and HILL, DAVIS, FOX, and KAUTZ, JJ.
Appellant, Kenneth Anastos, appeals the district court's
termination of his parental rights to his infant daughter,
AA. We affirm.
Appellant presents two issues, which we reword as follows:
1. Was there sufficient evidence to support the jury's
finding that the statutory requirements for the termination
of parental rights were satisfied?
2. Did the district court abuse its discretion when it denied
Appellant's motion for judgment as a matter of law?
AA was born in January of 2014. At the time, Appellant was
incarcerated in the Wyoming State Penitentiary. AA lived with
her mother and her mother's boyfriend. On February 11,
2015, AA was taken into protective custody, and two days
later the juvenile court placed her in the custody of the
Department of Family Services (DFS), which placed her in
On July 14, 2016, DFS filed a petition to terminate the
parental rights of both AA's mother and Appellant. The
mother failed to answer the petition or appear at the
hearing, and her parental rights were terminated on November
21, 2016. Appellant answered the petition, and demanded a
Prior to trial, the parties stipulated that Appellant was
incarcerated from March 30, 2011, through April 13, 2014. He
was then released on parole, which was revoked four months
later. From then until the date of trial, a period of
thirty-one months, he was either incarcerated or in mandatory
inpatient treatment for twenty-four months and free of
incarceration for seven.
At trial, Appellant testified about an even longer criminal
history, including a 2003 conviction for assault and battery
on a three-year-old child. He admitted that he had never
successfully completed any of his terms of parole, all of
which were revoked because of his methamphetamine use. He had
never successfully completed an inpatient treatment program.
Approximately thirty-seven years of age at the time of trial,
Appellant had an extensive history of ...