A 34-year-old woman got arrested when her son was noticed coming late to school wearing dirty clothes by his teacher in Osceola County, Florida.
Ventura Elementary School teacher noticed the 10-year-old boy coming to school daily wearing untidy and unwashed uniform, which created foul smell, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
When the boy was asked the reason, he said that he was taking clothes out of a dirty hamper to wear everyday and he did not remember the last time he took bath, said Twis Lizasuain, Osceola County sheriff's office spokeswoman.
The teacher then contacted the mother, Betsy Beth Velasquez and went to the boy's house. It was in a shabby condition. There were dirty clothes everywhere along with dog faeces all over the floor. Velasquez has five children from 8 to 14 years of age and has seven dogs.
The deputies were then notified and they started the investigation, reports News 13. When the deputies reached Velasquez house, she was not cooperating and being defensive initially.
"Initially she was uncooperative and she claimed that there was plenty of food. She had paid the bills, everything was up to date," Lizasuain said.
However, the deputies found the floors of the house with dirty clothes, dog faeces and mouldy dog food. The condition was worse as bathtub was filled with dirty water, soda cans were littered on the floor and none of the beds had sheets on them, reports The Orlando Sentinel.
The mother finally admitted to the officials that the house had not been cleaned in six months and she was arrested under the charge of child neglect.
"It was the condition of the home and the fact that the children had said that they couldn't remember the last time they had taken baths, the clothes were dirty and the house was just deplorable. And that is the reason why she was charged with child neglect."
The children were put under the custody of relatives by the Department of Children and Families (DCF), after inspecting whether the relatives have any criminal records or not. The seven dogs were picked up by Osceola County Animal Services.
"It sounds horrible, and it is horrible, when conditions rise to a level where we have to intervene," said Kristi Gray, a spokesperson for the state DCF.
She added that teachers, doctors, neighbours, family members, anybody who suspect any negligence or abuse of children should notify the authority.
Court records show that Velasquez was charged with a fine of $ 104 for leaving a child unattended in a vehicle in 2009, reports Orlando Sentinel.