Local Woman Arrested For Endangering Her Two Children
By John Elizondo and Adam Shear
WACO - A local woman is in the McLennan County Jail after her two children were found playing naked in an alley, running into traffic on a city street, and living in undesirable conditions.
Kristi Kae Courtney, 24, is being charged with abandoning or endangering a child and resisting arrest in connection to an incident that occurred Friday evening. Police were called to the 1600-block of S. 29th St. around 6:00 p.m. Friday on a report of young children playing naked in an alley behind the Bush's Chicken Restaurant.
When officers arrived, the children ran away from them towards S. 29th Street. When the children ran into the street they caused traffic to swerve around them. Police had difficulty stopping the kids when a woman identified as the children's mother came out of the house at 1629 South 29th St. The children's aunt showed up a few minutes later and helped gather the children.
After the children were controlled, the officers entered the house to find what they called totally deplorable conditions. The mother told officers that the reason the children were naked and covered in bug bites was because she had no clean clothes for them and could not afford to clean them.
"I can understand people falling on hard times," said Sgt. Patrick Swanton, Waco PD. "I don't think what any of [the police officers] can understand is why you would at least not try to clean your home or keep the conditions somewhat sanitary. Sanitary to the fact where your kids aren't infested with bug bites."
Neighbors who lived near the home say that Courtney's children never seemed to be clothed.
Officers reported finding rotting food on the floors throughout the house, bugs and roaches crawling on virtually all surfaces in the home, food dried on cooking surfaces, the stench of cat urine throughout the house, and filthy sheets and blankets on the beds.
"As a parent I can't even imagine my kids having to sleep in a bed with cockroaches and bugs climbing all over them," said Swanton. "It's not acceptable. Not in these times today, it's completely unacceptable."
Police referred the case to CPS who placed the children into the custody of their grandmother.
The man who owns the rental home Courtney and her family lived in said the home was in terrible condition when he was called Friday, but he spent the weekend cleaning up the property.
Tuesday, May 21 2013 9:54 AM EDT2013-05-21 13:54:05 GMT
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