THREE girls rescued from a home in the US state of Arizona say they were locked in their bedrooms, fed only once a day and denied baths for six months with police saying the abuse may have gone on for two years.
Tucson police said the girls are siblings - ages 12, 13 and 17 -
and their mother and stepfather have been arrested in a case that's
being investigated as alleged child abuse and imprisonment.
said a 34-year-old man and a 32-year-old woman were booked into the
Pima County Jail on suspicion of three counts of kidnapping, three
counts of child abuse-emotional abuse and three counts of child
The man also was accused of one count of sexual abuse of a person under age 15, according to police.
police Captain Michael Gillooly said at a news conference that all
three girls were malnourished and dirty, and they told officers they
hadn't taken a bath in up to six months.
"They were kept in filthy living conditions," said Gillooly, adding
that the two youngest girls were kept in a separate bedroom from their
The girls also told authorities that they were
fed only once daily and had been imprisoned in their bedrooms for at
least the past several months and possibly up to two years.
Police went to a midtown home on reports of a domestic violence incident about 4am on Tuesday, according to Gillooly.
two youngest girls told officers that they ran to a neighbour's home
after their stepfather kicked in the door and threatened them with a
knife. The unidentified neighbour called 911.
When officers went into the house, Gillooly said they found the oldest girl in another bedroom.
Gillooly declined to answer any questions about the case. More information was expected to be released on Wednesday.
resident who has lived in the neighbourhood for about five years told
the Arizona Daily Star that she didn't know anyone was living in the
home, which is set back from the street.
The woman said there was
no visible activity at the house, but other neighbours had told her that
they had heard what sounded like children playing inside the house at
The Star reported that police removed plastic bags containing evidence from the home and what appeared to be a computer.