Modoc DA drops child en­dan­ger­ment case against cou­ple

The Tribune (SLO) - - News - BY DON SWEENEY

A North­ern Cal­i­for­nia cou­ple will not face child en­dan­ger­ment charges af­ter deputies ini­tially re­ported find­ing twin boys in cage-like cribs bolted to a wall, KRCR re­ported.

“There’s no kids in cages and it’s not a child en­dan­ger­ment case,” said Sam Kyllo, the Modoc County dis­trict at­tor­ney, ac­cord­ing to the sta­tion. “They’re cribs. You can buy them on Amazon.”

Modoc County sher­iff’s deputies ar­rested Ra­mon Alberto Zen­de­jas, 25, and Mer­cadies Irene Wil­liams, also 25, on Fri­day fol­low­ing a search of their Tule­lake home, a sher­iff’s state­ment posted to Facebook says.

The search turned up three firearms, am­mu­ni­tion, ev­i­dence of a bu­tane honey oil lab and metham­phetamine, the state­ment says.

Deputies also found two chil­dren con­fined in “mod­i­fied cribs that were stacked on top of on an­other and se­cured to a wall like dog crates,” the sher­iff’s state­ment, ti­tled “2 chil­dren found se­cured in cages,” says.

“I sus­pect it was a way to keep them away from the other items that were lo­cated within the res­i­dence,” said Sher­iff Tex Dowdy, re­fer­ring to the 22-month-old twin boys, KRCR re­ported.

Deputies ar­rested Zen­de­jas and Wil­liams on sus­pi­cion of child en­dan­ger­ment, pos­ses­sion of a con­trolled sub­stance, man­u­fac­tur­ing a con­trolled sub­stance, pos­sess­ing drug para­pher­na­lia and weapons charges, the sher­iff’s state­ment says.

Dowdy said deputies ob­tained a search war­rant for the home af­ter an of­fi­cer ear­lier found bul­let cas­ings on the prop­erty, KOBI re­ported. Zen­de­jas, a felon, is pro­hib­ited from own­ing firearms, Dowdy said.

The child en­dan­ger­ment charges against Zen­de­jas and Wil­liams were dropped at a Tues­day court hear­ing, ac­cord­ing to the sta­tion. Of­fi­cials did not dis­close the sta­tus of the two chil­dren, who had been taken in by Modoc County Child Pro­tec­tive Ser­vices.

Ra­mon Zen­de­jas

Mer­cadies Wil­liams

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