Mother of 2 children found dead in Central Texas home arrested
The mother of two young children who were found dead in a home in Temple was jailed Wednesday, charged with two counts of child endangerment.
Terrikah Haynes, 36, is held in lieu of bonds totaling $300,000 according to online records.
She was booked into the Bell County Jail just after noon Wednesday.
Two-year-old Terric Boyd and 1-year-old Janea Boyd were found dead in a home on Sept. 30 at West Avenue P and South 35th Street, along with a woman identified as Haynes who was conscious, but unresponsive and two girls, ages 4 and 6, who were placed in the custody of Child Protective Services.
“Officers observed that the home did not have electricity or running water. There was also no food or fluids in the home for consumption,” Temple police spokesman Cody Weems said in a press release Wednesday.
The officers who found the children on Sept. 30 determined that the house had neither electricity nor running water and that water service had been disconnected on Sept. 3, an arrest warrant affidavit released Wednesday says.
They did not find any fluids in the house the children could drink, but did find empty 2-liter bottles of soda and empty juice boxes on the floor in various rooms, the affidavit said.
“The only food in the home was a few bags of dried beans and uncooked rice with no way to cook or prepare the beans or rice,” the affidavit says.
The temperature inside the house was 86 degrees, the affidavit said.
“The toilet was accessible, but there was no way to get rid of the waste and the bathtub did not appear to have any recent signs of use and had coffee beans in (it),” the affidavit said.
Autopsy results are still pending in the deaths of the two younger children.
Funeral services for the two are still pending.
The children’s mother appeared in court Tuesday for a custody hearing.
The two girls will remain in custody of the state until another hearing on Nov. 19.
A home study is underway to determine if a relative could take them in.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services confirmed that it’s conducting a joint investigation with Temple police.
The children were found dead after Salvation Army employees, who were working with the family, went to the home at around 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 30 to do a welfare check, got no response and then called police
The two officers who answered the call discovered that “the safety bolts were locked from inside the house” and got no response when they knocked at both the front and rear doors, the affidavit says.
One officer looked into a bedroom window “and smelled the odor of decay,” the affidavit says.
The officers found another bedroom window whose glass “had been broken out from the inside,” and when they removed the screen and shade found “a very young child” who “appeared very frightened and was one the ground by an adult female who was on the floor.”
One officer entered the house through the window and moved the two young girls “to a safe distance” and then checked on the woman, identified as Haynes.
She “was conscious, would not speak and her pupils appeared dilated,” the affidavit says.
Officers found the two younger children dead.
The two girls, who were taken to McLane Children’s Hospital, were “wearing clothing that had the odor of decay and trash and….appeared hungry and thirsty.”
The two children “described living on ‘fruit snacks,’” the affidavit says.
The children appeared to have been dead for some time, police said.
Haynes was taken to Scott & White Medical Center.
She appeared to be in a catatonic state, an officer said earlier.