An Oklahoma couple is facing a variety of felony charges after their toddler was found allegedly walking around by himself along a busy highway, and authorities allegedly found an infant left behind in a squalid home, KFOR-TV (Oklahoma City) is reporting.
Jazzmine Bennett and Darien Jeffers are both facing charges of child neglect and child endangerment following a disturbing incident that took place earlier this week. Authorities were called to an address in Chickasha, in suburban Oklahoma City, after witnesses reported seeing “a small child” walking along busy Highway US 62.
While assessing the situation, neighbors and passer-by reported that they had seen the small child walking around, unattended, before. Meanwhile, as officers were trying to figure out what was going on, Jazzmine Bennett and Darien Jeffers — the child’s parents — came to claim the child.
The pair allegedly told authorities that they had left the 3-year-old child, and an infant back home alone, by themselves while they, the parents, went to get something to eat, according to the Chickasha Express-Star. The couple allegedly explained that the toddler hand pink-eye and that they were going to take him to the hospital later that day.
Meanwhile, an officer rushed to the couple’s home to check on the infant.
Back in the couple’s home, authorities found a horrifying scene. A baby — allegedly the couple’s 1-year-old — was found standing by a crib, shaking and screaming, and wearing a leaky diaper. The officer on the scene attempted to change the baby’s diaper, but there were no supplies around. On taking the baby to the sink to wash her off, a piece of the baby’s skin fell off, according to police reports.
The child’s crib was allegedly covered in rodent and human feces, and the baby’s sippy cup allegedly had dried milk in it. In the crib was a piece of metal that the baby could have choked on. Similarly, authorities allegedly found several small objects all over the floor that could be considered a choking hazard. Spoiled food was found nearby on a high chair.
Authorities also allegedly found a metal pipe in a pill bottle, containing a green, leafy substance believed to be marijuana. Authorities also note that the pipe had a strong odor of marijuana and was about two feet from the baby on the floor.