Parents of 5-year-old boy found in car trunk charged with child neglect

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JACKSON COUNTY, WV (WOWK)—The couple whose 5-year-old son was found in the trunk of a car Tuesday in Jackson County, West Virginia have been arrested and charged with child neglect resulting in injury.

Court documents say that a detective responded to a trailer-style residence on Tuesday, August 24 in response to an unresponsive 5-year-old male who had been found in the trunk of a vehicle. Once on scene, the detective found a mother holding the unresponsive child (identified as PR) who appeared to be suffering from advanced heat-related injury. He had dilated pupils, was vomiting and taking shallow breaths. The detective found wetted a towel from the bathroom, wrapped the boy in it, and took the boy to an ambulance.

According to court documents, the detective noted an overpowering smell of feces and urine in the household and that the house was in a “deplorable” state. There was trash, rotten food, flies, maggots, dirty diapers and clutter to the point that it restricted movement in the home.

There were three other children in the home: a 3-year-old female (JR), a 2-year-old male (CR), and a 9-month-old infant. The infant appeared to be “foul and unbathed,” according to court documents.

The mother, 24-year-old Nantail Roberts, of Cottageville, stated in an interview with the detective that she had not seen PR since he went to bed around 12:30 a.m. She then said that she woke up around 12:30 p.m. or 1:00 p.m. and found that PR was not inside. She is said to have admitted that her negligence led to the child suffering serious bodily injury.

23-year-old Corey Roberts, also of Cottageville, also admitted that the state of the home was not livable and that his negligence led to PR suffering serious bodily injury.

Both parents were arrested and charged with one count of child neglect causing serious bodily injury and three counts each of child neglect creating substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury.

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