RHOME, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Two people remain jailed Wednesday morning after deputies found four malnourished children, two of which were locked in a dog kennel, living in deplorable conditions at a home in Wise County.
Authorities say they responded to a home in the city northwest of Fort Worth in regards to possible domestic violence between two people at around 7 a.m. Tuesday. Deputies found a 24-year-old man and woman at the home when they arrived.
As authorities were tending to the two adults, deputies found four children aged five, four, three and one in a condition that Wise County Sheriff Lane Akin described as “beyond neglected.”
The two oldest children were found in a 3-by-3 dog kennel, and the other two were found on the floor of the same room covered in waste. All four children appeared to be malnourished.
“These kids were neglected to such a high degree that it goes beyond neglect. It was an intentional act. These children were neglected. They were punished,” said Akin.
The children were transported to Cook Children’s in Fort Worth for treatment. They were soon released into the custody of Child Protective Services.
The adults were identified as Andrew Joseph Fabila and Paige Harkins. They were arrested and each charged with four counts of child endangerment.
Fabila had to be taken to the hospital for wounds on his face before being charged but was taken to jail after his treatment. Harkins is also charged with aggravated assault.
During the arraignment, Fabila’s bond was set at a total of $60,000 while Harkins’ is set at $75,000.
Deputies said during the investigation, they found that there was food inside the home, but it was locked up so that it couldn’t be reached by the children. They also found signs of drug use in the home.
Neighbors told CBS 11 the couple may have been on the property for three or four weeks, but they had never seen any signs of children living there.
“You’d think that being right across the street we would know something. You’d like to say you would do something. But you don’t know. I guess you never know what people are doing inside of their homes,” said Amber Jester.
According to a friend of Fabila’s, Harkins had three children while she and Fabila had one together.