The children, ages 7, 3 and 10 months old, were discovered in frightful conditions in Lake Stevens, Washington, when authorities came to investigate a child neglect complaint. The investigating officers soon had to don rubber boots and respirators because they realized it was a horror show when they stepped inside.
The children were found in terrible shape, and it's estimated that they had been left alone for days. There was no heat in the home, for starters, and those on the scene said the temperature in the house hovered around 40 degrees F. The infant was found in a locked room, unresponsive and wearing a stuffed-full diaper. He was cold to the touch — it was later found that his core body temperature was 94.1, which is hypothermic and quite dangerous. He was also found to be dehydrated, as were his siblings.
The kids didn't have any food and the house was covered in human and animal excrement. The kids were living in a back room where they slept on couches and cushions — no beds. The house was a firefighter's worst nightmare with exposed wiring coupled with disabled fire alarms. There was a space heater in the room where the baby was found, right next to a stack of dirty diapers. Also noted was water damage and evidence of mold, and there were holes in the exterior walls of the home. Outside, raw sewage ran from a camper parked on the property.
Even sadder, both the grandmother who lived in the camper and the children's other grandmother, who owns the home, declined to cooperate with authorities. The parents, both 32, were located and arrested, and both face an investigation of felony mistreatment and abandonment of dependents.
The parents aren't without rap sheets, either. They are both convicted felons — the father served time for shooting a man in the arm and the butt, and the mother stole a Ford Explorer. There has also been previous CPS interest in the home as well, after teachers at the oldest child's school were concerned over excessive absences and the child's appearance.
The children are now in protective custody, and all are expected to survive.
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