Two Prince William County parents, whose children were trapped in a bedroom tainted with feces and urine, were indicted Tuesday on charges of felony child abuse.
Christina Moore, 26, and John Robey, 34, of the 12000 block of Loft Court in Bristow were indicted on three counts each of felony child abuse for allegedly trapping their three girls in a room by nailing a piece of drywall across the door. Their trial is set for Oct. 20.
In March, the couple’s 4-year-old girl scaled the piece of drywall and ran to a neighbor for help, court records show. The neighbor went next door to the single-family home, tore down the “half wall” and rescued the girl’s 2-year-old and 6-month-old sisters, who smelled of urine and feces, according to court records.
The parents were passed out in an adjacent room, where police found several prescription pill bottles, smoking devices and needles. Both the parents’ and the children’s rooms were “in a deplorable condition,” court records said.
Police said it appeared that the girls had been in the room for less then a day and were not physically harmed, but Commonwealth’s Attorney Paul B. Ebert said Tuesday that more details about the case will be released during the trial.
“This is a very serious case,” Ebert said. “From [Moore’s] history, it is clear she has no business being a parent or guardian.”
This is the second time Moore has been charged in connection with her children. Moore was arrested in 2005 and lost custody of twin 22-month-old sons. Police said Moore fell asleep after using a bungee cord to secure the door on her trailer. The boys, however, were able to escape and were found wandering on the side of Route 234 in Dumfries.
Moore and Robey lived with Moore’s father in her childhood home in the quiet Braemar community. Friends said Moore struggled with prescription narcotics and had been using drugs.
Moore’s two sons, now 7, are in the custody of their father. The three girls removed from the home in March were turned over to Prince William Child Protective Services and placed in emergency foster care. Social services officials could not immediately be reached to determine where the children are now. Moore and Robey will remain in jail, officials said.
Law enforcement and social services officials said they are nearly powerless to protect children born to a parent who faces previous child neglect charges. There must be evidence of abuse before officials can intervene, Ebert said.