Carter County Sheriff Chris Bryant said an investigation into a child abuse case which began August 1 via the Dickson Police Department is still underway.
The investigation is now being conducted by the Carter County Sheriff’s Office.
“There was a two year old and a four year old inside the home,” Bryant said. “The conditions inside the house were dilapidated, very bad conditions. The house had lots of feces, animal feces, and no running water.” Bryant said Dickson Police sent the two-year-old child to the hospital. That child was later airlifted for medical care. The other child was treated by a local doctor, Bryant said. The children have been placed with a foster family and their medical needs are being addressed.
“The child who was airlifted was released to a foster family,” Bryant said. “He is mobile, moving around laughing and talking.”
Bryant said the children are the biological children of the male subject in the case. Bryant confirmed charges have been filed on both the biological father and spouse.
“This right here has been the worst we have ever seen,” Bryant said. “It’s very disheartening, as a father myself. It has been very difficult for everyone that has worked on this. No child deserves this. This is unacceptable.” Bryant confirmed both subjects remain in custody as of Friday morning. Bond was set for the male subject in the amount of $1 million. Bond has been reduced for the female subject to $75,000.
“This was an issue that Dickson PD had been involved with early on,” Bryant said. The family had been previously investigated by DHS as well, according to Bryant. “We want to offer assistance to any agency having these issues. We want to make sure these things are handled correctly and taken care of swiftly. We want to help those children who don’t have a voice for themselves.” Bryant said more charges may be added as the investigation is still ongoing.
While investigators are looking into whether the female subject may have participated in the abuse of the children, Bryant said knowing the abuse is being perpetrated and not reporting or protecting the children is just as reprehensible. “She didn’t do much to stop it, from what we’re understanding,” Bryant said. “You’re just as guilty if you know this is happening and don’t try to stop it. We would encourage anyone out there who has information about any kind of abuse whatsoever going on, please call us and let us help.”
Bryant said he waited to discuss the case with the public or the media until he could be sure he could present precise information. “We want to make sure that what we’re reporting is 100 percent factual before we discuss it,” Bryant said. “When you have children or infants at stake here, we want to protect the integrity of the case.”