In Henry County, Tennessee, three people face child abuse and animal cruelty charges after a toddler was found inside of a kennel in a trailer with mice and snakes – including a 10-foot boa constrictor.
According to WateNews, Henry County Sheriff Monte Belew named Heather Scarbrough, 42, T.J. Brown, 46, and Charles Brown, 82, as being arrested on charges of aggravated child abuse and aggravated cruelty to animals as well as additional charges. The three adults and the child lived in the trailer.
The disturbing situation began as an investigation into reports of animal abuse at the property, however when deputies arrived, they allegedly found the one-year-old child in a cage in the room with snakes and mice. More than 100 marijuana plants were on the property as well as 100 more animals including dogs and cats were rescued. Deputies also seized 17 semi-automatic guns including one AR-15. Thousands of cockroaches and maggots and dog feces covered the floor.
In court, defense attorneys stated the kennel was a “makeshift playpen for a lower-income family.” The investigating officer stated there is a big difference between a playpen and a kennel – especially with snakes, rats, mice, cockroaches and urine-soaked clothes in the cage.
Possession of firearms charges against Scarbrough was dismissed, and a marijuana possession charge was reduced from a class B felony to a class C felony.
Altogether there were 86 chickens and roosters, 56 dogs, 10 rabbits, four parakeets, three cats, eight snakes and one pheasant seized. Additionally deputies rescued 531 mice, rats, hamsters, gecko and super gliders.
Bail was set at $300,000. T.J. Brown has been released on bond.
(Photos screenshots via WateNews)
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