DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Police officers in Daytona Beach said after discovering filthy and dangerous conditions inside a home on Jean Street, two women were arrested and their seven children were removed from the smelly apartment.
Sisters Shameka and Melida Jenkins were charged with child abuse after the kids were found in "the worst living conditions I have ever seen children exposed to," as one of the officers stated in a report.
Officers were originally called to the home for a domestic disturbance. The officers found the kids, ages one to eight, sitting in a corner, trying to catch some of the ceiling fan breeze. There was no air conditioning, no toys, and bugs everywhere.
One responding officer observed that he noticed, “an infant running barefoot on carpet that was supposed to be brown in color but was matted, thick, clumpy, and covered wall to wall with black mold. The smell in the air was a mixture of mold, urine, and feces.”
In the police report, officers said the children were clothed in dirty diapers and there were several other dirty diapers on the floor around a bed.
"There was a bathroom off that bedroom in which the toilet has been used for a long period of time with out being flushed. There was layer after layer of feces, toilet paper, feces and toilet paper. There were flies all around that room. There were also Palmetto Bugs and other varsities of cockroaches roaming about every room of the apartment,” the report states.
Police say the only food in the home was small jars of peanut butter, jelly and some mayonnaise.
“The cabinets were full of cockroaches, most of the interior doors were off their hinges and laying in the doorways. There was no air conditioning and it was hotter inside the apartment than it was outside,” one officer wrote.
"We would've arrested someone with an animal living in these conditions, much less young children," said Daytona Beach Police spokesperson Lyda Longa.
One officer said the mold was so bad, he had to go outside to wash his eyes.
The Florida Department of Children and Families responded and gave temporary custody to the defendants’ mother, according to a police report.