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Starved and chained: a couple was arrested in Florida for child abuse

A married couple from Florida were arrested for mistreating adopted children, as reported by the publication Pix11.

Photo: Shutterstock

Three criminal charges of child abuse were brought against 40-year-old Oscar Torres and his 32-year-old wife Brittany Kirschenhofer from Port Saint Lucie.

Authorities arrived at the couple's home following an anonymous complaint about the poor living conditions of three teenagers.

“The door to the bedroom, where all three victims were, was chained and padlocked,” said St. Lucy County Sheriff's Deputy Chief Brian Hester.

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The couple explained to the detectives that the locks on the doors were for their dogs, and the children could move freely.

Hester said three teens, a 17-year-old boy and 16-year-old twins, are underweight. One of them weighs about 50 pounds (22 kg) and "has hallucinations, speech problems, loss of muscle control and impairment of other bodily functions."

One of the teenagers told the detectives that they had to "secretly search for leftover food."

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"The details of this case are alarming, and this is the worst example of child neglect I have learned about in 26 years of work in law enforcement," - amazed Hester.

The authorities said there were two other younger children living in the house, but they did not appear to have been ill-treated. On February 22, the children were taken away from this house. Now adolescents are in the care of their biological mother. The rest of the children live with other relatives.

Torres and Kirschenhofer are kept without bail.

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