Officers from the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office in Wisconsin were shocked to find five children imprisoned in caged filled with their feces and urine by their own parents.
The parents, 46-year-old Travis Lanier Headrick and 39-year-old Amy Michelle Headrick, were arrested last Friday and were charged with nine felony counts on Monday, including reckless endangerment, child neglect and false imprisonment.
Officers were alerted to the couple’s cruelty to their four adopted children and one biological child after a babysitter sent her mother a photo of a small boy caged in a horse trough covered with metal fencing and snapped close with zip-ties.
The babysitter’s mother sent the picture to the police who acquired a search warrant and raided the Headrick home. Officers found a 10-year-old boy in the horse trough, an 11-year-old boy shut in a double-stacked cage and a 12-year-old girl imprisoned in a room with a single hallway exit.
According to the Lacrosse Tribune, the children were kept in terrible conditions: “A criminal complaint filed Monday says the two children relieved themselves in the cages and remained inside for extended periods with their own urine and feces.”
The parents, however, claimed that they only caged their children to discipline them and keep them safe. Amy told the police, “I don’t consider it a cage. It’s more of a glorified crib.”
Her husband Travis claimed that his children are cognitively disabled and asserted: “You don’t understand what you’re saying. Unfortunately you don’t understand their cognitive behavior and the danger they put themselves in.”