HALIFAX, Pa. — It is a horrible case of child abuse: Authorities in Halifax, Pennsylvania, say for three months, three young children were locked in a room and abused to the point of near starvation.
A 5-year-old child weighed only 23 pounds.
Now the parents are behind bars facing numerous charges.
“One of the girls was probably, according to the doctor, was about a week away from dying,” Dauphin County District Attorney Ed Marsico said.
He says the children found in the home, under the care of Brandi Weyant and Joshua Weyant, were nearly starved to death and beaten.
“They were locked in a room with no heat source, they were given no food we believe for the last few months, their weight was basically just skin and bone.”
The owner of this house, landlord Sheila Herb, says she had no idea what was going on behind closed doors.
“They need to rot in jail,” she said.
According to court paperwork, the children told police they were locked in their room and couldn’t leave.
Investigators say the kids told them “they would have to pound on the wall to get someone to take them to the bathroom, and they would urinate on themselves and on the bedroom floor when no one would come.”
“Mold, and lice, I’m told there’s lice…bed bugs. You’re going to want to shower when you leave here,” Herb said.
The court paperwork says, “the victims were found to be extremely disheveled with dirt, animal hair, urine and feces in their clothing and encrusted into their skin.”
“Everything you open, there’s bugs running,” Herb said.
Inside the house, a man who says he lived there says he fed the kids each a single apple every morning.
He says he didn’t know they were being abused.
“The pictures in this case were terrible,” Marsico said. “To see these children, you knew that they were near death when you see the pictures.”
The DA says all three children are either still in the hospital or back in the hospital.
The parents are facing numerous charges, the most serious of which is aggravated assault.
“The aggravated assault is very similar to the attempted homicide charge. So the aggravated assault would probably encompass [attempted homicide],” Marsico said about why there is no attempted homicide charge.
Both the homeowner and neighbors say they wish they would’ve known so they could’ve helped.
“Them little kids…why didn’t they just give them up instead of torturing ’em?” neighbor Fred Anderson asked.
The district attorney says animals in the home were fed and healthy while the children were starving.
Police say both Brandi and Joshua Weyant have denied abusing or neglecting the children.