Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 1:15 p.m.
"Ah, but nobody ever said life was fair..."
Social workers and cops in Orange County weren't sure what to make of claims by a five-year-old girl named Diane that she and Tiffany, her two-year-old sister, were beaten by their mother with kitchen utensils.
But nine years later in October 2011, there was no confusion about the trouble when that same mother called 911 and the Costa Mesa Police Department to say she was on the verge of murdering her oldest daughter.
It turns out that the mom, who is called only "BN" in court records, didn't really want children because they blocked her from her dreams of wealth and glory.
On the day of the phone call to police, the mom had punished Diane for getting a bad school grade by locking her in a closet for six hours and making Tiffany write a note to be taped to the closet door.
The note read, "I am an idiot. I failed a test."
When Diane was let out of the closet, her mom yelled in Vietnamese and beat her with a four-foot stick.
Police arrested BN, who said she was tired of being a mother, and the two girls, then ages 13 and 11, were placed in protective custody.
According to court records, a social worker discovered that the mother had no recognizable parenting skills and would likely continue her child abuse.
In August 2012, Orange County Superior Court Judge Cheryl L. Leininger gave custody of the girls to their father and, upon learning that they did not want to see their mother from fear, denied her visitation rights.
BN appealed the ruling and this month a California Court of Appeal based in Santa Ana agreed with Leininger that this mother remains clueless that she'd traumatized her own kids.
Upshot: In a seven-page opinion, Associate Justice William Bedsworth wrote that the "no visitation" order was not an abuse of Judge Leininger's discretion.
The judges are open to the possibility of renewed visitation rights in the future for BN, but only if the meetings won't be emotionally scaring to the kids.