When police searched a house where residents were making and selling methamphetamine, they didn't expect to find a 4-year-old boy locked up in a closet.
The child told investigators that rats and roaches were his friends and that they visited him.
According to Rachel Leal-Hudson, the person representing the boy during custody hearings, what the boy has gone through is just terrifying.
“This is a 4-year-old child who has seen things an adult should not have seen,” she told reporters.
Investigators said they found the boy near drug paraphernalia and pornography. He told officers that he was locked for hours at a time and that he was even forced to sit on top of a tall refrigerator as punishment for leaving the closet.
“He can articulate some things that are really shocking and surprising that tell us he was in there for quite a length of time,” Leal-Hudson said.
The boy’s mother, April Burrier, was later arrested for endangering a child. However, she was not in the house when officers found the boy.
According to Burrier, someone else was supposed to be watching the 4-year-old, but because of how intoxicated she was, Burrier was unable to help officers find this person. The boy, who’s now in the custody of Child Protective Services (CPS), also has a father with a history of past drug convictions.
According to Raw Story, Robert Dehart is asking the court to grant him custody of his son. He said that he had left the child with Burrier after Thanksgiving but that he was unaware of the horrible conditions the child had been experiencing.
The court has yet to decide what the boy’s future will look like as the custody case is heading back to the courtroom next month.
Police are still looking for Daniel Clark Morris III, who was allegedly running the meth lab from the Texas house.
This terrifying story goes to show that the most vulnerable among us are often put in great danger by their own family. We hope that this little boy’s future is a brighter one and that officials are able to place him with someone who will help him get over these traumatizing experiences.
Banner/thumbnail : Reuters/Christian Hartmann