LEXINGTON, MO (KCTV) - Authorities say they found three children and a dog living in deplorable conditions, and a 24-year-old mother now faces charges.
"It was total filth inside," Lexington Police Chief Don Rector told KCTV5's Jonathan Carter.
Christeena M. Adair has been charged with second-degree child endangerment and animal abuse.
Authorities went to Adair's apartment on Friday after state social workers received a complaint that children were unattended inside. Police came to assist the social workers.
Once there, they found an overwhelming stench, Rector said.
"It was disgusting. You could smell it when you walked upstairs," Rector said.
He added that it was hard to believe anyone could live in the conditions.
Once inside, piles of human and canine feces were found, cockroaches were scurrying about and the living area was infested with bed bugs, authorities said.
"The cockroaches were just real bad. One officer opened the door and they were jumping on him," Rector said.
According to court documents, there were "thousands of cockroaches and flies throughout the kitchen area and on the front door frame." The officer found "thousands of cockroaches" in every room, according to court documents.
There was no running water and the sink was filled with dirty dishes, Rector said. The dishes were covered with cockroaches. The toilets were overflowing.
The children were indeed alone behind a locked gate, and there was no food, he said. There was no air conditioning.
"The smell of ammonia and urine. It was just filthy," Rector said. "It's hard to breathe once you go inside the apartment."
One child was 5 years old and two were 3 years old. One child was naked and running through the filth, according to court documents. Feces had been smeared on the walls.
Officers found Adair next door hanging out in her boyfriend's apartment, Rector said. She was arrested and issued the two misdemeanor charges.
The children were given over to the care of a family friend.
Adair will face a preliminary hearing at 9 a.m. on July 22 on the two misdemeanor charges.
Authorities are working with the health department to get the "place cleaned up," Rector said.
Neighbors say they are brokenhearted and disgusted. They say there are food pantries and churches that would have helped Adair out.
Neighbors say they wish they had done something to intervene and got the children something to eat.
Adair's mother refused to care for the dog and police took the dog to the local pound.