Starving Boy, 15, Weighed 80 lbs. and Ate Grass and Sticks to Survive — and Family Is Charged
The boy would have died "approximately one week" later if police had not discovered him, an affidavit states
Four members of an Oklahoma family are charged after the discovery of a severely malnourished 15-year-old boy who was allegedly forced to live in a barn separate from his family, PEOPLE confirms.
When found after a July 12 welfare check, the boy “weighed less than 80 lbs. and was diagnosed with severe malnutrition,” states an investigator’s affidavit obtained by PEOPLE. The affidavit also states that if the boy had not been discovered, he “would have likely died within approximately one week.”
Lincoln County First Assistant District Attorney Adam Panter told The Kansas City Star the boy ate “sticks, twigs, leaves and grass” to survive.
The boy’s father, stepmother and two stepbrothers were arrested after the boy was discovered in the barn, in the tiny town of Meeker.
Jimmy Lee Jones Sr, 34, the boy’s father, was charged with one count of child abuse by injury and one count of child neglect. His bond was set at $125,000, a court clerk confirms to PEOPLE.
Amy Jones, 46, the boy’s stepmother, was charged with one count of enabling child abuse by injury and a count of child neglect. Her bond was set at $75,000.
Jonathan Plank, 20, and Tyler Adkins, 24, were each charged with child neglect and their bonds were set at $25,000 and $100,000 respectively.
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All four family members remained in jail and are expected to make an appearance in about two weeks, the court clerk says. They have not entered pleas and it wasn’t immediately clear if they’d obtained attorneys.
After law enforcement discovered the boy, they realized he’d suffered multiple injuries, including a head wound that became infected with maggots, according to the affidavit. His father allegedly treated the wound with superglue.
The boy also suffered multiple broken bones and had several shotgun pellets in his leg, the report states.
While the boy allegedly lived in the family’s barn, the rest of his family lived inside the house where they “appeared well fed,” the affidavit states.
The boy had not left the property for two years, it stated.