Teen Mom Amber Portwood’s daughter becomes a ward of the state

Radar Online has the exclusive details of a court hearing in Indiana over the fate of the Teen Mom star Amber Portwood and her ex-boyfriend, Gary Shirley’s, two year-old daughter, Leah. Amber is currently under investigation for two counts of felony domestic violence and one misdemeanor in conjunction with two abusive incidents against Gary that were shown on Teen Mom. (This story has those videos.) The two felonies are related to the fact that Leah witnessed the abuse, a claim that Amber denies which is backed up by footage from MTV. The misdemeanor is for another attack by Amber that was taped by MTV but never shown. (Cops subpoenaed the tapes.)

Leah has been staying with Gary and his mom for the past few weeks and Amber has shown little interest in her daughter. The toddler is now a ward of the state following the latest ruling, but the good news is that she’s not being removed from her home and will stay with her father and maternal grandmother. Here’s part of Radar’s story on that:

Teen Mom star Amber Portwood’s daughter is now a ward of the state of Indiana, RadarOnline.com has learned exclusively…

Portwood and Gary Shirley appeared in an Anderson, Indiana courthouse Tuesday afternoon for an emergency child placement hearing concerning their two-year-old daughter Leah…

The 20-year-old mother of one and her baby’s father were at the Madison County Circuit Court for a 2:30pm closed hearing regarding placement of their child.

One source told RadarOnline.com: “Leah is a ward of the state.”

That means that as the Department of Child Services assesses Leah’s living situation the child technically becomes a ward of the state, even though she is currently staying with Shirley.

A ward of the state is an adult or child whose guardianship is determined by a judge who appoints a government agency to oversee the ward of the state’s affairs.

RadarOnline.com also learned that the Indiana Department of Child Services supervised Portwood’s visit with Leah at Gary’s house on Tuesday after court.

Following the short hearing, DCS escorted Portwood to Shirley’s home so she could have a one-hour visitation with Leah.

Shirley and Portwood declined to answer questions outside of court after the Tuesday hearing.

One source, who was at the courthouse, told RadarOnline.com that Gary and Amber appeared extremely friendly toward each other.

DCS will monitor Amber’s progress and also determine if Gary’s home is suitable for Leah to remain in permanently.

Amber can still fight for custody.

[From Radar]

This sounds like good news, because the child will be monitored to make sure she is cared for properly and Amber will receive supervised visits with Leah. On the show, Amber was rarely shown interacting with the little girl and she often yelled at her while laying on the couch and not even bothering to get up. Gary is the better parent, and hopefully his mother is also making sure that Leah gets plenty of attention of love.

Also, Amber has yet another new boyfriend, a cagefighter, and was last linked with an ex con. It’s better for Leah that she’s kept away from the string of men that Amber is likely to bring home over the next few years.

Photos via MTV, where you can watch full episodes of Teen Mom if you’re in the US.



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39 Responses to “Teen Mom Amber Portwood’s daughter becomes a ward of the state”

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  1. juliana says:

    I don’t really care for this show, but the last picture is adorable.

  2. bellaluna says:

    That poor little girl. Hopefully the state of Indiana DCS will do a better job of monitoring Leah’s homelife than most states. The only (probable) saving grace is that she’s living with her dad.

    Amber is a waste of human skin.

    Gary is a passive-aggressive jerk, but at least he acts like he loves his daughter.

  3. Sarah says:

    Don’t watch the show or care about the show but that little girl is freaking adorable. I hope everything turns out okay for her.

  4. anti says:

    that little girl has very sad eyes for her age…

  5. aenflex says:

    American Television at it’s finest 🙂

  6. juliana says:

    Some women just aren’t cut out to be mothers.

    Hopefully this young woman will not have any more children until she is capable of truly nurturing them.

  7. Newbie says:

    Sad sad sad! That last picture brings tears to my eyes. Just a little bit.

  8. mel says:

    Thank God that the state finally stepped in for the sake of Leah. She deserves a better life than what her mother was giving her. I hope Gary will do a better job of raising her.

  9. Candice says:

    I didnt know Amber was such a bad mom.

  10. Whatever says:

    American Television at it’s finest


    Yep. It’s sad that the rest of us are represented to the world by the likes of these morons, the Gosselins, Jersey Shore douches, etc. No wonder the rest of the world thinks we are crass and stupid!

  11. Rachel says:

    Why don’t these teen moms ever consider adoption? Think how happy that sweet little girl would be with parents who could love and care for her properly.

  12. TG says:

    I can’t bring myself to watch more than a few minutes of those shows because it is so disturbing to see the dumb teenagers and their dumb parents. That last pic with the girl in the heels is also disturbing on many levels.

    I am one of those people who think kids should be permanently removed from bad homes parents are given 1 chance and you don’t have a right to screw your kid up while you try to be a better parent. If the dad isn’t capable or willing let someone adopt her as their own.

  13. juliana says:

    Why is that picture of the little one in heels disturbing?

    Little girls almost always want to play dress-up, wear mommy’s clothes, shoes and makeup, etc.

    My mom has pictures of us doing the same thing at the same age as this little girl, and neither my sisters or I were hurt by the experience.

  14. OtherChris says:

    Ovaries shouldn’t work until you’re at least 21. I know there are exceptions, but most young moms struggle, at best.

  15. Mizz Tickles says:

    Anti I was thinking the same thing.

  16. bellaluna says:

    @ OtherChris – ITA. And sperm shouldn’t be produced until guys are at least 25. Unfortunately, we don’t live in Utopia, so this kind of mess will likely keep happening.

  17. Relli says:

    @ Rachel have you ever watched the show? Because there is a story line in which on of the girls does give up her daughter, that is filled with emotional land mines too.

    I am glad that the state stepped in hopefully this will make Gary step up and become a better parent.

  18. juliana says:

    @OtherChris: I agree with you.

  19. guesty says:

    hope amber gets the help she needs.

    so glad that leah is living with gary & his mom. on a couple episodes leah indicated how much she wanted to be with her dad & was even correcting amber @ one point. such a little sweetie.

  20. Gabriela says:

    God, look at how sad this beautiful little girl looks 🙁

  21. Nanea says:

    @ 14 & 16: I’m happy there’s no age restriction on reproducing.

    My parents-in-law got pregnant when they were both 19 with a baby that would grow up to be my husband. Both of them finished their MA degrees, taking turns with the paternal grandparents to look after the baby and continue at the university.

    When one looks at these people though – just no! Poor kids.

  22. Jacq says:

    WTH? Where is MTV with comment? Paging Dr. Drew… Just awful.

  23. Amanda says:

    MTV should be taken to task for filming this family. This girl obviously has serious problems that are affecting her child. And the child is now a ward of the state. But MTV is taping it for our viewing pleasure?? Reminds me of TLC taping the Gosselins despite the parents going insane over fame and money and the family totally falling to pieces.

  24. Roma says:

    @Relli: Yes, Catelynn & Tyler struggle with the adoption but the point is Carly is having a great life with her adoptive parents.

    My birth mother was a teen mom and I was placed up for adoption right after birth. The love and security that a couple in their 30s can offer differed vastly from my birth mother, who dropped out of high school and worked minimum wage jobs.

  25. Henriette says:

    This gives me a wretched case of The Sads. I know so many people who want to adopt and yet the wait-lists are infernally long. Most of these teen moms should get an abortion or give up their kid for adoption instead of keeping them and ruing their little lives. UGH.

  26. sf says:

    I agree with the person who called Gary a passive-aggressive jerk, and I do think, for now at least, it’s better for Leah to be with him.
    It always made me sad watching Amber on the show, because she would get such terrible feedback. It’s pretty obvious Amber has PPD, maybe even some other mental problems. What she needs is someone to help her, not people to call her a waste of human skin.

  27. Jeri says:

    Sad situation. A child could end up in foster care for years when the parent(s) think they are giving the child to a good home.

  28. gg says:

    ITA with Henriette. Nanea, your husband is one of the lucky few, not to mention, his parents weren’t 16 either, which is even worse than 19.

    And none of that makes it the right thing to do. Kids should absolutely not have kids.

  29. Anon73 says:

    poor Leah !! my heart goes out to her

  30. LondonParis says:

    #21, I’m glad everything worked out, but that’s a seldom seen scenario. And I doubt it was easy, even with the help from grandparents. If they had the option to have your husband five years later- same baby, just in five years- I’m sure they’d take it. And most of the time the kids end up like poor baby Leah.

  31. Kim says:

    Why arent people holding MTV somewhat accountable for airing this crap and contributing (money) to this!!! I am boycotting MTV until they cease all 16 and pregant type shows. They pay these young girls with no money alot of money & instant fame to be on the show so DO NOT TELL ME THIS SHOW DOESNT PROMOTE TEENAGE PREGNANCY! Outrageous that its on the air and that people watch these poor abused, children as entertainment!!!!!

    SHAME ON ALL OF YOU WHO WATCH THIS SHOW & support these poor kids being mistreated! You do by supporting the show whether you know it or not. Viewership equals money.

  32. Shannon says:

    Kim have you ever actually bothered to watch the show or are you just talking out of your ass? I’m thinking it’s the latter.

  33. mia says:

    Kim, you are being a Rahtard.
    You think MTV is contributing to the delinquency of minors? Atleast they aren’t having the babies vacuumed out before they are born.

  34. Linda Guest says:

    It should not be a bad thing for a younger woman to get pregnant. There should not be a stigma. Many women want to get pregnant while they are biologically able to do so. What’s wrong with that?

  35. All says:

    What has America come to???????

    Poor little girl….i feel sorry for her…she is so openly being exploited by national media. I hope she find hapiness she looks sad.

  36. Chrissy says:

    If she is a ward of the state, does that mean Gary and his mother are receiving money for her care? Foster parents receive money to help care for foster kids … wonder how being a ward of the state differs from that. Either way, I feel for that child and I have from the first episode with this couple. They both have severe issues.

  37. Bunnywabba says:

    The last picture is not adorable. If you saw the actual footage, amber is lying on the couch as usual and forcing a very fake lau to pretend she has an interest in her daughter since the cameras are there. She leaves Leah in the crib all the time and puts her in dirty clothing. Plus she let that boyfriend of here’s change Leah’s diapers. Eveer heard of child molestation amber?

  38. HakuraChii says:

    I always feel so conflicted over these sorts of issues. I’m a 24 year old woman, and I *still* don’t feel ready. But at 16, you’re not emotionally/physically/ or (hormonally) mature enough to fully understand & deal well with all the challenges that come with parenting. You go from enjoying the last few years of your childhood (arguing about curfew and tube tops/boyfriends) to having the rug pulled out from under you, and being expected to sink or swim in the world of adulthood by the time you have deliver your child.

    I get very frustrated, not understanding why no one ever learns to use birth control methods. Especially those who have children continuously from a young age, and just *never* use protection, so constantly have more and more children. It’s so wrong, and unfair for those kids.

    It’s especially hard when you don’t have family to support you, which many young people don’t. Amber is a very sad case. She does really need anger management help, because this is obviously a real problem for her. She has no right to put her hands on someone, & it could easily extend to her children. She’ll continuously ruin relationships, & is putting herself in major risk too. (she was baiting Gary to hit her while she was hitting him.) She’s going to do this with the wrong person at some point. (It would be especially bad with this ‘current boyfriend’, a ‘cage fighter’…)

  39. 30 something mom says:

    For me, watching Amber & Gary was difficult. I also had a child young. A little older than Gary, actually. I had my son with a man who def wasn’t the right choice. He was controlling & abusive and I was an emotional basket case, who always got high just to escape my life. Well, one day after my concerned mother ( as she should be) came to my home and took my son away. Not only did she do that, she took custody away from me and officially adopted my son 2 yrs later. I was in bad shape and for a long while, got worse before getting better.
    Now, years and years later, because of my mom stepping in and ME getting serious help, I’m in my sons life trying to be the best influence I can for him. I know I was a horrible mom now. I got clean and sober. I continue to seek help so that I’m only a postitive person in my sons life.
    I hope Amber realize’s the trouble she’s in. I’m happy that Leah is with Gary and his Mom. I’m sure Cps will have Amber seek help and go to therpay plus medication monitoring. Only time will tell if Amber wakes up and realizes that she’s loosing her daughter. This is a sad sad story….And for me personally, something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. The guilt I have to this day is awful. It’s something I carry with me this very day. Now, I’m working with Moms who are in Amber’s situation. And I see many Moms who lose their kids to foster care. In foster care, the bio Moms aren’t allowed to know who the foster parents are, where they live, etc. Some run out of time and have to give up their parental rights to the state. Yes, Gary and his Mom will recieve money from the state for Leah. But, if the State has 1 problem with Leah’s care or with Amber NOT following the rules( like she can’t be at Gary’s home or with Leah, AT ALL) unless she’s supervised by a CPS worker, CPC can remove Leah and put her in foster care.
    Amber still has a chance….She hasn’t 100% lost her parental rights. But from reports she doesn’t seem to be fighting for Leah, either.
    I hope she wakes up sooner than later….