Four children removed from #8216;deplorable#8217; houses

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 14, 2007

Local authorities are pursing criminal charges against some area adults after Lawrence County Sheriff’s deputies and investigators with Lawrence County Children’s Services found children living in

“deplorable conditions” at three residences within the last two weeks. The children were found living amongst animal feces and ruined food, investigators said.

On Nov. 28, authorities removed a two-year-old from a residence on Township Road 124 in Willow Wood after finding “floors covered with trash and feces,” rotten food in the refrigerator, a strong odor of urine and obvious rodent droppings on the kitchen counter as well as other safety issues “regarding risk to the health and safety of a child,” according to a prepared statement from the sheriff’s office.

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“We have made the protection of our children a priority and will continue to work with all agencies to rid our county of abusive action against our children, inclusive of these deplorable living conditions our children may be facing,” Lawrence County Sheriff Tim Sexton said. “These investigations are examples of what we have been working to accomplish with our child abuse investigator’s position that began in 2007 with assistance in funding provided by the Department of Jobs and Family Services. We an assign a deputy to assist daily in the investigation of abuse, neglect and dependency cases.”

One day later, on Nov. 29, investigators removed four children, aged 5-15 from a residence in the 400 block of North Kenova Road in Chesapeake after finding “feces on the floor and walls, molded food, a toilet full of feces, garbage throughout papers against electric baseboard heaters, roaches in the home and a general appearance of clutter everywhere.”

On Dec. 4, authorities went to another home on North Kenova Road and found “trash and clutter throughout the home, rotting food on dishes in the kitchen, bugs on the walls and floors, dog feces on the walls and floors,” according to information from the sheriff’s office.

Investigators said they found a box of dog feces in the kitchen. They are seeking the removal of a seven-year-old child from that home.

The Lawrence County Prosecutor’s Office is also involved in these investigations.