UPDATE: Prestonsburg Couple Indicted on Multiple Child Abuse Charges

By: Randy Yohe, WSAZ News Staff Email
By: Randy Yohe, WSAZ News Staff Email

UPDATE 10/27/11
PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WSAZ) -- Two parents have been indicted on abuse charges in Floyd County after police say they found their children living in filth.

Prestonsburg Police say that last month they found Shawn and Amber Cordle's five children covered in rashes and blisters due to the living conditions in their apartment.

Police say two special needs children were kept in a room with string tied to the door to keep them from leaving.

Shawn and Amber are both charged with five counts of criminal abuse, five counts of endangering the welfare of a minor and two counts of unlawful imprisonment.

They pleaded not guilty to the charges.

They are scheduled for a pre-trial conference on January 13, 2012.

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PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (WSAZ) -- This is a child abuse case that a police department says is the worst it has ever seen.

The reports include young children locked up, covered in blisters and rashes and filth.

The story comes from Prestonsburg, Ky., where the good news is five kids are on the road to recovery.

Their maternal grandmother says just getting the little ones treated and cleaned up and in a healthy environment is working wonders. Police say if being smothered in filth wasn't bad enough, pain pills were lying around the apartment like candy.

Officer Zak Clark says he went to Shawn and Amber Cordle's Prestonsburg apartment on Sept. 2 after the 39-year-old father called for an ambulance.

“He was holding a child outside with blisters on its mouth and hands," Clark said. "Inside there was human and animal feces everywhere -- an empty crib full of feces. It's the worst thing I've seen in a long time.”

Clark says besides extreme neglect and filth, the Cordle's five children --- ranging in ages from 17 months to 7 years old -- were also surrounded by cats and rotten food. Prescription painkillers also were lying around just about everywhere.

"You mean like OxyContin?" WSAZ.com's Randy Yohe asked Clark.

"There was liquid hydrocodone and other pills strewn all over,” Clark said.

Clark says when he went upstairs, he found two special needs children locked up in horrific conditions.

“There were two special need kids in the same bed," he said. "They were covered in human and animal feces. The parents said they did that so the children could not escape.”

The five children were taken to Highlands Regional Medical Center.

A manager at the apartment complex says they saw no trouble in the Cordle couple's apartment when they inspected it.

The couple's preliminary hearing was delayed when the judge said the Cordles showed antagonism between them, now requiring separate court-appointed attorneys.

They face felony abuse, endangerment and imprisonment charges.

Both of the Cordles are jailed in lieu of $25,000 bail.

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