Couple charged after children found sleeping alone in roach-infested Laurel Co. home

jwarren@herald-leader.comAugust 11, 2014 

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Laurel County deputies charged a couple with endangering the welfare of a minor after finding two of their children sleeping on the floor of a mobile home and another sleeping on a couch outside with no adults present.

Officers arrested Michelle Russell, 29, and Jerry Russell, 24, after going to their residence at a trailer park two miles south of London in answer to a 911 call shortly after 4 a.m. Sunday, according to the sheriff's department.

According to a release from the department, officers found a 12-year-old boy sleeping outside the home on a couch that had been turned upside down.

The trailer's door was open, and deputies found two girls, ages 10 and 7, sleeping on the living room floor, Sheriff John Root said.

Roaches were crawling over the children, according to the sheriff's department.

No adults were present when the officers arrived, the sheriff's department said.

While deputies waited for social services to arrive, Michelle and Jerry Russell drove up, the department said.

Deputies determined that the children had been left alone for about five hours, according to the department. They also noticed a strong odor of marijuana coming from the couple's car.

The mobile home had no running water, no electricity, no furniture, no refrigerator and very little food, the sheriff's department said. The home was infested with roaches,

Michelle and Jerry Russell were charged with endangering the welfare of a minor. Jerry Russell, the children's stepfather, also was charged with driving under the influence, driving on a suspended license, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Both parents were lodged in the Laurel County jail.

The children were placed in the custody of social services, the sheriff's department said.

Jim Warren (859) 231-3255.

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