In re J.M.R.

State of Texas in the Eleventh Court of AppealsJul 2, 2015
No. 11-15-00037-CV (Tex. App. Jul. 2, 2015)

No. 11-15-00037-CV



On Appeal from the 318th District Court Midland County, Texas
Trial Court Cause No. FM 56


This is an appeal from an order in which the trial court terminated the parental rights of the mother and the father of J.M.R. The mother filed a notice of appeal; the father did not. We dismiss the appeal.

The mother's court-appointed counsel has filed a motion to withdraw and a supporting brief in which he professionally and conscientiously examines the record and applicable law and states that he has concluded that the appeal is frivolous. The brief meets the requirements of Anders v. California, 386 U.S. 738 (1967), by presenting a professional evaluation of the record demonstrating why there are no arguable grounds to be advanced. See In re Schulman, 252 S.W.3d 403 (Tex. Crim. App. 2008); High v. State, 573 S.W.2d 807 (Tex. Crim. App. 1978). In this regard, the practice recognized in Anders for court-appointed counsel to seek a withdrawal from a frivolous appeal applies to parental termination proceedings involving appointed counsel. In re R.M.C., 395 S.W.3d 820 (Tex. App.—Eastland 2013, no pet.); see In re K.D., 127 S.W.3d 66, 67 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2003, no pet.).

Appellant's counsel provided Appellant with a copy of the brief (sent via both certified and first class mail) and informed Appellant of her right to review the record and file a response to counsel's brief. In compliance with Kelly v. State, 436 S.W.3d 313 (Tex. Crim. App. 2014), counsel also provided Appellant with a form motion to file in this court to obtain access to the appellate record. Appellant did not file the motion in this court. Nor did she file a response to counsel's brief. We conclude that Appellant's counsel has satisfied his duties under Anders, Schulman, and Kelly.

By letter, this court granted Appellant thirty days in which to exercise her right to file a pro se response to counsel's brief. --------

Following the procedures outlined in Anders and Schulman, we have independently reviewed the record, and we agree that the appeal is without merit and should be dismissed. See Schulman, 252 S.W.3d at 409. Accordingly, we grant the motion to withdraw filed by Appellant's court-appointed counsel. Additionally, we order counsel to notify Appellant of the disposition of this appeal and the availability of discretionary review in the Texas Supreme Court. Counsel is directed to send Appellant a copy of the opinion and judgment within five days after the opinion is handed down, along with notification of her right to file a pro se petition for review under TEX. R. APP. P. 53. Likewise, this court advises Appellant that she may file a petition for review pursuant to TEX. R. APP. P. 53.

The motion to withdraw is granted, and the appeal is dismissed.

PER CURIAM July 2, 2015 Panel consists of: Wright, C.J.,
Willson, J., and Bailey, J.