Police remove nine children from 'deplorable' Rowan Co. home

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ROWAN COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - This is the house where nine kids live just off Igo Road, in Rowan County. A look at the nearly bare building doesn't show much from the outside. There are the bricks that appear to be leaning under the weight of the house and the front door is without a doorknob.

"For them to live like that is pretty sad," said Letha Peyton, who lives just down the road.

Peyton said she would do all she could for the children, after the teenagers started walking a half mile to her home just to fill up jugs with water.

"Probably a month-and-a-half to two months ago they started coming down here to pick up water. They would come, sometimes, two to three times a day. Sometimes they'd be here five times, it just depends," she described.

Aside from the three teens, all of the children are nine years old or younger, and the youngest is just two months old. The oldest is 17 years old.

"We got them clothes and stuff before to give to the kids, but I don't know about their living arrangements was up there," Peyton continued.

Kentucky State Police and the Rowan County Department of Social Services got a call on Monday evening about these living arrangements which investigators describe as "deplorable," or to put it another way, disgraceful.

"I do know they didn't have any electricity or water, but I do believe they had a generator. I mean I don't know if they used it or not," added Peyton, who would talk to the kids each time they came to get water.

Peyton said her heart breaks that the nine kids had to live in these conditions, but she said she's glad a call was made to get them help.

"I just hope good luck to them, and hope it's a better year for them."

Police say the two-month-old and another child had to be treated for malnutrition and dehydration, the two-month-old also had to be treated for hypothermia. Four other children were treated and released.

Edith Strange, the 35-year-old mother of the children was arrested and is charged with wanton endangerment. She declined to speak from jail. The father, 34-year-old Johnathan Prater, is also charged with wanton endangerment. At this time, police are still searching for him.

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