A judge had strong words this week for an Oklahoma mother and father sentenced to 130 years in prison for what a police officer termed the “worst case of child abuse” he had ever seen.
The 9-month-old twin girls of parents Kevin Fowler, 25, and Aislyn Miller, 24, weighed roughly eight lbs. each when they were hospitalized in December. The couple was arrested following a visit with the children to an urgent-care clinic, according to records obtained by PEOPLE.
Nurses at the clinic noticed that both twins had severe diaper rash and bed sores, with feces in one child’s ear and a strand of hair wrapped so tightly around a finger of the other child that it had become infected, according to arrest reports obtained by PEOPLE.
One child was described in the police reports as looking like a “skeleton.”
A jury convicted Fowler and Miller on Oct. 13 of five counts each of child neglect and then recommended they serve 30 years apiece in prison on the first four counts and 10 years on the fifth count.
The judge followed those recommendations in handing down his sentence.
It was not immediately clear Wednesday if the parents planned to appeal.
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Authorities Detail Deplorable Living Conditions
The family’s Collinsville residence had cat feces smeared on the walls and maggots in the girls’ playpen, according to testimony from an investigator for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, reports the World.
Authorities say a maggot was also seen emerging from a wound in one of the emaciated girls, according to the AP.
“It’s what we would term as shocking and heinous,” Kristi Simpson, an investigator for the state Department of Human Services, testified during a preliminary hearing on the case, according to the World.
The couple told investigators they felt overwhelmed as the working parents of four small children without enough outside help, according to testimony in the case, and defense attorney Steven Vincent said during an earlier hearing that their request for government aid had been denied since they both had full-time jobs.
Maternal grandparents Cathey and John Miller are also set to be tried next April on allegations they enabled child abuse and neglect, according to local TV station KJRH.
In addition, Rita Fowler, the children’s paternal grandmother, faces multiple counts of child neglect related to the case.
The grandparents have all pleaded not guilty.
Aislyn Miller allegedly said the couple did not have health insurance and thus allowed the children’s health problems to persist.
Both girls were taken into state custody upon the arrest of their parents.