Fifteen Children Found Living in Trailer
Fifteen children, ranging from just an infant to 13-year-old, are in state custody after deputies say they were living in dangerous conditions in a small trailer.
The seven adults living there have been charged by the Spartanburg County Sheriff's Office with Unlawful Neglect of a Child--Aaron Eugene Dodson, Brianna Hope Henderson, David Russell Hayes, Karen Lynn Dunbar, Andy Lee Dunbar, Cindy Ann Cox and Cherie Rose Toney. Deputies say the relationship between all seven adults is unclear, though they pointed out one of the men has a current and former girlfriend there, and they are parents of 11 of the 15 children.
Deputies say at least 10 dogs and 4 cats were also living in the home at the end of Hunter Road near Woodruff in Spartanburg County.
Neighbors like Sherri James say they had no idea. "No, I had no clue that was going on," James said. "You never see any children out that way, coming down this road, and to have that many children in one area and not see them is very strange."
The investigation began when school officials notified deputies after a teacher made a startling and graphic discovery.
"One of the things the lead investigator told me this morning is that a teacher was trying to help one of the children in the bathroom, and a cockroach crawled out of the child's underwear," Lt. Kevin Bobo said.
Warrants say deputies found children playing in an above-ground pool with water colored green they say from the growth of algae and lack of chemicals.
Inside the house, deputies found urine and animal feces throughout the trailer, medications scattered around and unsecured guns within the reach of children.
"[The] situation could have been a whole lot worse, especially if one of the young children got a hold of the firearm," Lt. Bobo said.
By law, there will be a family court hearing within 72 hours. There, a judge will decide whether there was probably cause to remove the children.