BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — A concerned woman’s plea for help resulted in two Bloomington residents facing neglect charges.
The Bloomington Police Department said officers started investigating after the woman brought the teenage girl to the department, expressing her concern about her wellbeing. When police talked to the girl, court documents detail the living conditions her parents have been keeping her in.
Note: To protect the identity of the girl, we did not name anyone involved in the story.
The now-17-year-old girl told police that she had not gone to school since middle school. She was not enrolled in an online school or participating in homeschooling. It has been years since she had last been seen by a doctor.
Inside the small camper where she lived with her parents on someone else’s property, the girl said she did not associate with anyone or leave often. It had no air conditioning or heat.
The girl told police that they did not have running water, and that she only got to shower when she visited the woman’s house. She had to use the bathroom in buckets.
The document states the girl’s hygiene was poor, and it seemed like she didn’t understand the severity of her living conditions due to not associating with people or attending school.
When police went to talk to the girl’s parents, the document stated the inside of the camper was in extreme disarray. It was extremely dirty inside.
The document stated the girl’s mother told police that they use the property owner’s water from an outside faucet and store it in jugs. She told police that her daughter had not been seen by a doctor since she was 11. The mother told police that the girl stayed inside the camper and played on a phone during the day.
When police went to talk to the girl’s father, the document stated he began crying. He said no one would help him. Police asked him why he was not trying to help himself, as he had not spoken to housing and was not cooperating with the Department of Child Services. He was also not applying for any jobs and knew the living conditions were unacceptable.
The document said police found out both parents told them they consume narcotics, including smoking marijuana and methamphetamine. While the mother told police they last smoked methamphetamine two days before police went to speak to them, they do not smoke around the girl.
Police said neither parent was trying to better the living conditions for the girl. They were arrested and transported to the Monroe County Jail on a neglect of a dependent charge.