Two children have been found living in a home brimming with rubbish, stained clothes, swarming insects and the foul stench of rotting food – even though their mother is a cleaner.
Trash bags, children’s toys, dirty clothes and cups filled with an unknown liquid were strewn across the front garden of the home in Fort Pierce, Florida, when officers arrived on Monday.
Police, following an investigation by the Department of Children and Families, had visited the address after reports of a ‘foul’ stench coming from the home.
Sick: Two parents have been arrested after their children were found living in deplorable conditions, pictured
Mess: Dirty pots and pans, opened packages and animal cages were found strewn about the home
They arrested the children’s parents, Ronald and Robin Teller, both 37, at the home and each faces two charges of child neglect without great harm.
Inside the house, police discovered trash across the floor, mattresses soaked with large brown stains, insects swarming surfaces caked in dirt and a fridge brimming with mouldy, uncovered food.
Dirty clothes, open food packages, pet cages and dirty pots and pans covered the floor and made it difficult to walk through rooms, the police reporte noted.
Among the debris strewn across the front lawn of the house, officers found a knife with an eight-inch blade, according to the arrest report.
Arrested: Ronald Teller told police his wife, a cleaner, got angry at him when he attempted to tidy up
‘The residence was covered with bugs,’ the report reads, according to WPTV.com. ‘On top of the kitchen table I found dirty leftover biscuits that were old and had insects on them.’
In the fridge, officers could not find any mould-free food and came across a pot filled with ‘an unknown rotting substance’, the news site reported.
The disgusting conditions are despite their mother’s job as a cleaner at a nearby courthouse. She told police she tried to clean the home every day, but it is ‘hard and overwhelming’, their report said.
The Tellers were taken from the home to be interviewed by detectives. During interviews with police, Mr Teller said he works for St. Lucie Company five days a week.
Dirty: Officers found brown mattresses and dirty clothes strewn about the home in Fort Pierce, Florida
Riddled: They found insects swarming the dirty surfaces and cobwebs covering the walls
Risk: The disgusting conditions put the young children, a girl and a boy, at serious risk of foodborne illnesses
He agreed his home was unsafe for the couple’s two children – a boy and a girl – but said it was his wife’s fault, as she gets angry at him when he tries to clean it, according to the arrest reported.
The boy and girl were removed from the house and given to child services. Their parents are being held in St Lucie County Jail on $7,500 bond and two charges of child neglect each.
The children, who are pictured grinning alongside their parents in pictures on Facebook, are lucky to avoid many of the foodborne illnesses passed on by rotting groceries.
Bacteria like salmonella, which is passed from uncooked meats to other foods that are not covered, or through unwashed hands, can cause excruciating food poisoning, fever and diarrhea.
Grim: Officers said there was so much rubbish on the floor they were unable to walk through the house
Dirt: Robin Teller said that, although she works as a cleaner, she finds cleaning her home ‘overwhelming’
Cobwebs: Police also found insects in the home and a knife with an eight-inch blade in the front garden