VICTORVILLE, Calif. (AP) – Authorities have removed 20 children and 18 dogs from a Southern California home that they say was uninhabitable.
San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies also arrested five women at the home Thursday on suspicion of child cruelty. Two of the women also were suspected of being under the influence of a controlled substance.
A sheriff’s statement says the Victorville home had no working electricity or gas, and there wasn’t enough food for the people living there. The statement also says that the dogs had no access to water and the carpet, walls and furniture were in disrepair. Authorities also say black mold was throughout the home.
The children ranged in age from 2 months to 17 years old.
Animal control officers took away 18 dogs. Two other dogs were dead.
According to CBS Los Angeles, one person who drove a carpool by the property thought it was a farm.
Neighbor Cary Walker said, “When word gets out, you’re going to have people cheering that they cleaned this place up. Especially the people who worried about the little toddlers and children. They don’t need to live like that.”
Other neighbors told CBS Los Angeles that they often gave the children money for food.
“The kids would go up to the liquor store and ask for money and ask for food. They’d come home with chips and sodas,” said one woman.
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