WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) — Three people, including a Warren mother and a Fowler couple, are at the Trumbull County Jail on child endangering charges after two separate weekend incidents.
Chelsea Lewis, 24, of Warren, is accused of leaving her young children home alone while she went to the doctor. Warren police were called to 452 Commerce Ave. N.W. about 10 p.m. Sunday by a neighbor.
When police arrived, they found the front door wide open and were greeted by a little girl who said she was 4 years old and her mother was not home, according to a police report. She also told officers her 2-year-old brother was upstairs.
The girl told officers her name and her brother’s name and said her mother, whose name is Chelsea Lewis, had left the house “a while ago” to go to the doctor. Police attempted to contact Lewis, but were not able to reach her. The police report states that Youngstown police had attempted to reach the grandmother of one of the children in Youngstown, but she was not home.
Police contacted Children’s Services and placed the children with a case worker temporarily, who took them to the CSB facility.
After officers arrived back at the station, they received a call that Lewis was back at the apartment causing a disturbance with a neighbor. Officers responded and conducted a traffic stop on Lewis’ vehicle, during which she was arrested for child endangering.
About 10:30 p.m. Saturday, police responded to a mobile home at 7 North Quail Road, where they found no hot water, dirty diapers strewn about and a toaster oven being used for heat. Officers were called to the house by Tiffany Woody, 21, who said there was an unwanted person there by the name of Alice Cook who she alleged had assaulted her and her husband.
Woody called back a few minutes later and said that Cook and her mother had left already.
While on the way to the trailer, officers received a call from Cook, who said her son, Kristopher Clay, 24, had taken her phone and she wanted her grandchildren checked on because Woody and Clay were drunk.
Officers wrote in their report that when they arrived about 10:45 p.m., Clay and Woody both were having trouble maintaining their balance, had slurred speech and bloodshot eyes. Both admitted to officers that they had been drinking and Woody also said she had taken prescription medication.
Woody told officers that she and Cook, who is Clay’s mother, had gotten into an argument and Cook had pushed her and she wanted to file assault charges.
Officers said there was a toaster oven on the kitchen counter with the door open. Clay and Woody told officers their heat had been shut off because they owed the gas company $500 and could not afford to pay the bill. Woody told police she and Clay are not married, but they have lived together for about a year and have two children together, a 3-month-old girl and a 2-year-old girl.
Police said there were cigarettes strewn on the floor and Clay told them Woody was not a good housekeeper. Officers said Woody had on a pair of shorts and they could see recent cut marks on her leg. Woody told them she is a “cutter” and the marks were a week or two old.
Officers found the 2-year-old in a room that “smelled like feces.” She was standing in her crib watching TV, was wearing a onesie and did not have a blanket. The sheets on her mattress were filthy and there was an electric heater in her room, the police report states.
Officers then went to Cook’s address, where they spoke with Cook and her mother, Karen Price. Cook said she got into an argument with Clay and Woody over the welfare of the children. Price said she watches the girls three days a week and on several occasions, the children have come to her house with health issues.
Price said on a recent occasion, one of the girls had diaper rash so bad she was bleeding because Woody does not change her diaper and leaves her in soiled clothing, the report states.
Officers decided it would be best to leave the children with Price for the evening. They went back to Woody and Clay’s trailer, where they found Woody falling asleep next to a marijuana bong that could be reached by the 2-year-old. Police also found a digital scale with marijuana residue on it, and both Clay and Woody admitted the drug paraphernalia belonged to them.
Police said Woody told them she did not have any clean bottles for the baby because they had not had any hot water for two weeks. The 2-year-old’s diaper was soaked with urine and feces, the report states.
Both Woody and Clay were arrested on charges of child endangering and issued a summons for drug paraphenalia. Police said Woody slept the entire ride to the Trumbull County Jail, while Clay told officers it was OK for him to smoke marijuana because it was going to be legalized soon. He also admitted to having anger issues mostly due to his childhood and him being introduced to alcohol and drugs at a young age, the report states.
Police said they planned to contact Children Services.