A Florida woman is in jail after police discovered her five-year-old son, who was allegedly so malnourished that he could neither stand nor speak, eating bits of cereal off a filthy floor, the Orlando Sentinel is reporting.
Naomie Hall, 24, is facing charges of Child Neglect Causing Bodily Harm after police discovered the horrifying scene. Responding to a tip, Daytona Beach Police Department officers visited Hall’s apartment. There, they found Hall’s five-year-old son on the floor, eating bits of cereal off of the “filthy” carpet.
Police described the boy as weighing 24.9 pounds; a weight so drastically low that growth charts don’t even list that weight for a five-year-old. Further, he was so weak from malnourishment that he could neither stand nor speak. Further, he was described as dehydrated and having dry skin. His hands and feet were dry, peeling, and covered in blisters.
Hall allegedly told investigators that it wasn’t uncommon for the boy to go without food for “three or four days at a time.” She said that he had been prescribed an appetite stimulant, but that it didn’t work and made him sleepy. She also said that the boy doesn’t communicate, but she can generally understand his needs through facial expressions. When he was hungry, she said, he would chew his hands.
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The boy, whose name has not been made public, was taken to a nearby hospital and admitted to the Intensive Care Unit, where he’s being treated for seizures and possible cardiac arrest.
Another adult, identified as Hall’s husband, and two other children were found living in the home. It is not clear, as of this writing, if the other children were found to be in any danger. Further, it’s not known at this time if Hall’s husband will be facing any criminal charges.
John Harrell, a spokesman for Florida’s Department of Children and Families (DCF), described the investigation as “ongoing.”
“We’re of course investigating thoroughly to ensure the safety of these children.. We’re still working to gather information but our focus is on keeping these children safe and healthy.”
According to WKRG (Mobile), Hall has been jailed on $35,000 bond.
[Featured Image by Daytona Beach Police Department]