Ann Arbor woman fights to get baby back that CPS removed the day before Thanksgiving

ANN ARBOR (WXYZ) - An Ann Arbor mother is fighting to get her infant daughter back after Child Protective Services forcibly removed the baby the day before Thanksgiving.

Dalia Kenbar was hiding in an upstairs bedroom when Washtenaw County Sheriff's deputies and CPS case workers removed 7-day-old Layla.

"I had never done anything to my kids or my newborn," Kenbar testified Monday during a preliminary examination.

A CPS case worker agreed that there has never been any sign that Kenbar abused her newborn or eight-year-old son.

The eight-year-old boy was removed in April after Kenbar was involved in a fight over a cell phone with her 17-year-old brother that left scratches on the teen.

At that time, CPS workers say the house was a cluttered mess and the electricity to the home had been shut off.

Dalia Kenbar, her teenage brother and a 25-year-old brother lost their mother in 2009. She was killed in Iraq while working for the United States as a translator when she stepped on a roadside bomb.

In April, Kenbar also revealed to case workers that she was bi-polar, but not taking her medication because she was pregnant.

During Monday's hearing, Nicholas Barilovich, an investigator for CPS, testified that he knew Kenbar had given birth to her daughter just before Thanksgiving after calling area hospitals.

Barilovich said he believed CPS needed to remove the baby with an emergency order because they didn't know if she was in a suitable living environment and what he called Kenbar's "lack of cooperation" in the case of her eight-year-old son who has remained in foster care since April. That case is still pending.

Barilovich conceded that no one investigated the conditions of Kenbar's new home before removing her nursing infant.

Kenbar testified that she is unable to find the baby's father and the friends she now lives with are "like family."

At the end of Monday's hearing, the court decided to leave Kenbar's baby in foster care so that CPS can look into whether her new home is a suitable environment, which is something Kenbar's attorney Allison Folmar says should have been done before the baby was "snatched" from Kenbar.

The next court date is set for December 17.

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