MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Felony child neglect charges have been brought against a Martinsburg couple after police discovered two small children living in “subhuman” conditions Wednesday.
Ashlyn Mickley, 21, and Conner Mickley, 24, were each arraigned on two counts of child abuse creating risk of injury and two counts of conspiracy.
The Herald Mail reports the odor of feces, old food and uncleanliness coming from the apartment where the 2-year-old children were living was “overpowering” when Martinsburg police officers responded to investigate a disturbance complaint.
Ashlyn Mickey told authorities that she had been unable to “keep up with cleaning” after her husband moved out of the apartment about three weeks ago.
Records show that officers reported seeing one child wearing a dirty diaper and later found the second child standing in his crib with no clothes on.
The officer said in a complaint that the mattress in the crib had no sheets, and the mattress was ripped, with metal springs coming through.
Dog feces was on the floor with dirty sanitary wipes, and the officer said he also smelled dog urine in the room.
In the other child’s bedroom the officer observed dried feces mashed into the carpet and smeared on the walls.
A large amount of dirty dishes and seats, caked with old food were found in the kitchen where the children ate.
A leasing agent for Martins Landing witnessed the children’s rooms were heavily stained with feces in the carpet and walls during a property management inspection in September.
It’s unclear why the leasing agent did not notify authorities, or issue a follow-up inspection.