Three arrested after 2-month-old found malnourished in home

Updated: Jul. 23, 2019 at 3:05 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Three Lake Charles residents were arrested after a 2-month-old malnourished girl was found in their home, according to Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso.

Crystal J. Roberts, 37, Herbert J. Thibodeaux, Jr., 34, and Anthonette K. Thibodeaux, 58, all of Lake Charles, were arrested on drug and child cruelty charges.

Mancuso said at a news conference this afternoon that the investigation began when a welfare call was made to the Calcasieu Sheriff’s Office about a home on Goodman Road. The complainant told deputies that the parents of a 2-month-old were possibly smoking illegal drugs inside the home with the baby present.

When deputies arrived at the home, they saw the home was dirty and had no running water, food, or formula, Mancuso said. Deputies also observed roaches and flies inside the home. The infant was dirty and wearing a soiled diaper. According to Mancuso, the diaper had to be removed by emergency medical personnel because the girl had a severe case of diaper rash.

Deputies observed sores on her body and signs of being undernourished, said Mancuso.

According to Mancuso, all three residents in the home admitted to smoking synthetic marijuana in front of the baby and during a search of the home deputies located illegal drugs.

“It always saddens us when we have a child that cannot fend for themselves that’s relying on adults to take care of them and I can tell you, the problem is drugs are more important to them than the care of this child,” Mancuso said. “The great thing about children like that is they’re tough, a lot tougher than we think they are, and I understand at the hospital [she] sucked down a few ounces of milk pretty quickly.”

The mother, Crystal J. Roberts, and the father, Herbert J. Thibodeaux Jr, are facing the following counts:

  • Second-degree cruelty to a juvenile
  • Illegal possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Illegal possession of synthetic marijuana

Roberts’ bond has been set at $16,000 and H. Thibodeaux’s bond has been set at $8,500, both by Judge Robert Wyatt.

The grandmother, Anthonette K. Thibodeaux, is facing counts of illegal use of drugs in the presence of a juvenile, illegal possession of drug paraphernalia, and illegal possession of synthetic marijuana. Her bond was set at $6,000.

The infant was taken to a local hospital for treatment and is now in the custody of the Department of Child and Family Services. Deputy Chelsey Gault was the arresting officer. Det. Shelley Trahan and Det. Ben Hare are the lead investigators.

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