PRINCETON — A case involving a Bluefield couple, who were arrested in May and charged with felony child neglect after their special needs child reportedly arrived at school unclean and with his feet covered in feces on one occasion, was forwarded Tuesday to the Mercer County Grand Jury.
Franklin George, 31, and Jessica George, no age available, have been charged with gross child negligence of their 7-year-old son, according to a criminal complaint filed by Detective-Sgt. K.L. Adams of the Bluefield Police Department.
An investigation started when Adams was notified about several Child Protective Service referrals concerning “injuries observed on the victim’s body, the victim’s cleanliness and concerns with the victim not obtaining proper medical care,” according to a criminal complaint.
Frank George and Jessica George were scheduled for preliminary hearings Tuesday before Magistrate Charles N. Poe and Magistrate Susan Honaker. In both cases, the preliminary hearings were waived. The case is now going to the Mercer County Grand Jury.
Adams was told by CPS officials “the victim had heart complications, was nonverbal and just recently began walking on his own,” according to the criminal complaint. The victim was found to be transported to school on a bus, and is required to wear a harness during transit. The victim wears diapers, and must be changed while attending school.”
Adams interviewed school officials and learned the child often came to school unclean.
School staff supplied detailed documentation of the child’s injuries, which included “numerous bruises on various parts of the victim’s body, swelled knots, puncture wounds, bite wounds and abrasions,” according to the criminal complaint.
“On one occasion the victim arrived at school unable to walk off the bus, and had to be carried into the school by his teacher,” Adams’ report stated. “Once in the school the victim was found to have feces covering the soles of his feet. When the feces were cleaned off, the victim was found to have an open wound on the bottom of one of his feet. This injury caused the victim severe pain. The parents of the victim were unaware of several of these injuries on their child.”
The criminal complaint also stated the child had “severe diaper rash causing bleeding,” and other injuries related to a lack of cleanliness.
During an arraignment in May before Magistrate Poe, Franklin George told the court the couple had seven children ages 10, 9, 7, 5, 3, 2 and 1.
Adams’ report stated school officials did not believe the child was being physically abused, but “just severely neglected,” and that “the parents were overwhelmed with the amount of children inside the home.”
In his complaint Adams stated he visited the George residence and found the home to be “extremely dirty” and smelling “of feces.”
— Contact Greg Jordan at firstname.lastname@example.org