Firsthand look at local home staged to show child abuse signs

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 6:34 PM

Updated Thursday, Aug 22 at 6:43 AM

(KMOV) --  In advance of Friday’s ribbon cutting, UMSL and Children’s Advocacy Services allowed News 4's Sharon Reed to tour the mock house which was staged to represent a situation of possible child abuse.

A photographer captured a first-hand look while walking through the house.  

Here is the information Sharon was given before entering the house.

"The Miller family recently moved to the area from Illinois.  There is a 28-year-old father, 27-year-old mother, 5-year-old daughter, 18-month-old son and an infant. Since the 5-year-old started school, there have been concerns about her overall well-being.  You as a social worker has been sent to the home."

How many warning signs do you see? Below is a list of what Sharon Reed found while in the staged home. 

Outside: chalk drawings that said “go away”, a misspelled girl’s name, scary faces of family members, and one depicting a man’s genitalia

Master Bedroom: a child’s sleeping bag on the floor, cigarette butts, intimate apparel, razor blades easily in a child’s reach, trash and food on the floor, adult items, a large dog crate with a child’s blanket and toys inside, soiled diapers, guns magazines, drugs and drug paraphernalia, prescription drugs (without the family name on any of the containers), uncovered electrical outlets, signs the baby slept in bed with the parents, white powder on the baby blanket, heavy metal cassettes, an inhaler next to an ashtray, used condoms, a pregnancy test

Child’s room: window open with no screen, a leash, candy and candy wrappers, fast food wrappers, a baby doll face down in a food bowl, lubricant and tampons on the dresser, handcuffs attached to the bed, a dead mouse under the bed along with mouse poison, a baby doll on the bed with red maker on the groin of its undergarments, a jump rope noose in the closet

Bathroom: soiled diapers, a 5 year old’s bloody clothes on the floor, a razor within a child’s reach, a pregnancy test in the trashcan, lice medication, a lot of Sudafed in the medicine cabinet, more prescription drug containers (again the names did not match the family name)

Living room:  more gun magazines, gun in a table drawer with no lock, more pills and drug paraphernalia on the table, dirty diapers, asthma treatment right next to an ashtray, trash and more fast food wrappers on the floor, drugs right next to the baby formula, a child’s chair facing the corner, inside the box for the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life” was a tape which appeared to be an adult film

Kitchen:  No child safety latches on the cabinets, a rodent trap on the counter, a crock pot with rancid food in it, food spilled on the counter, food on the stove loaded with hot peppers, dirty dishes on the table and in the sink, gloves with white powder on them, candy and candy wrappers, very few vegetables and no fruit,

Refrigerator: Candy, an empty wine bottle, a pizza box, empty milk jug, uncovered leftover food, the shelving had fallen and was not fixed

Please note:  The experts tell say some of these signs may not mean anything by themselves , but they may be an indicator when taken into account with other clues.

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