Attorneys update the court on Kimbley children's struggles - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Attorneys update the court on Kimbley children's struggles


David and Sabrina Kimbley appeared in court on Thursday for a hearing regarding the permanency of the custody of their five children. The children were removed from the Kimbley residence after authorities deemed the children's living conditions unsatisfactory. The couple has been charged with 13 counts of child endangerment, each.

The Kimbley's son Jake was found dead in a septic tank in August 2012.

Four of the children are in foster homes together, the youngest, Jake's twin, is in a separate home. Attorneys representing the children said bed wetting episodes are being resolved along with eating disorder problems that are slowly fixing themselves as children are introduced to new and healthy foods.

One of the attorneys says the child he represents is doing better--  the child is reading, has glasses now and is progressing, according to counseling notes. The child is able to read and write.

Another attorney says the child he represents, a nine-year-old, has had to take on somewhat of a parental role in the past and is committed to having a relationship with his siblings even though his permanent home could end up being with his biological father in Virginia. That attorney says he believes the 9-year-old could benefit from being split from his siblings because he could then just be a kid.

"The first priority is to keep everyone together, but sometimes that's not possible," says Cynthia Kent, with the Smith County District Attorney's office.

The nine-year-old's father, joined the conference via phone from Virginia. He and his wife of three years are ecstatic about the thought of the child coming to live with them.

The attorney representing one of the girls says she has some problems with bad behavior, bed wetting and fighting with her sister. The foster parents are having trouble getting the girl the special assistance she needs at school and she is having trouble making friends.

The attorney says she feels the girl needs more counseling.

"I have some concerns for her because she also is going like this, and hitting her face and I don't know if that's sleeping at night with roaches running over your face," says the attorney.

The girl has been introduced to more foods.

"We're making progress with eating regular food. [The children] had told [the foster parents] that normally their meals would be Pop Tarts for breakfast, lunch and dinner, sometimes maybe some macaroni and cheese. So, getting them to eat regular food like a pork chop with some peas and things like that... they are learning to eat normal food and healthier," the attorney says.

"I'm really worried about her," added the attorney.

Another attorney said, "I'm very concerned that these children are going to need more counseling than just once a month or once every two weeks."

That attorney says the girl she represents is, "the stubborn one." The attorney says she was very verbal from the beginning of her time in foster care. Now she is not as verbal and they do not know if that's good or bad. She is now enrolled in a head start program and is going to school daily. She has had one major incident of bad behavior when she was throwing food all over the cafeteria at her school.

"She has a lot of spirit in her. In school, even though she didn't feel well, she was throwing food around the cafeteria at people," the attorney says.

IQ testing for the children has been requested. The attorney representing another one of the boys says client is happy, despite having some issues. The foster parents say there are a lot of unusual behaviors going on, including all of the children watching each other go to the bathroom.

Jake's sibling who is not in foster care with the others, is reportedly very happy and energetic.

The attorneys have different concerns about the permanent placement of the children.

The nine-year-old boy's attorney says his client has been presented with the idea of moving to Virginia to live with his dad and the little boy has said, "It would be a great adventure."

Cameron Castleberry, the attorney representing the Kimbleys, says the paternal aunt would like placement, but CPS cannot vouch for her at this point because of past records. A home study is being done on the aunt and ad lidems have met with her to address their concerns.

The judge reads over the nine-year-old boy's psychological evaluation, noting, "He worries a lot, [the boy] feels as if he is not there sometimes, stomach aches, headaches."

The judge continues reading, saying, "[The boy] calls his siblings his kids."

An attorney for another of the boys says he does this sometimes, too.

The judge reads over the Virginia father's psychological report too. He is an electrical engineer with a two- and four-year degree. His wife works at a grocery store. The father says he had not been ordered to pay child support until this past December, but he has been giving Sabrina Kimbley money for expenses monthly for the last few years, based on what she said she needed at the time.

The father from Virginia was asked to undergo parental training and will come visit his son during the child's spring break.

Another permanency hearing will be held in March.

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