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Mom, boyfriend accused of tying up, abusing kids

May 24, 2011 2:10:15 PM PDT
An 8 year old little girl, not a tear in her eye, most likely drained of any emotion, asked two strange men to take her from a home of unimaginable disgust. "She followed us, asked if we could take her," Det. Bruce Armitage, of the Mercer County Sheriff's Office, said.

"It was filthy, rotten food, stagnant water, dead rodents," Det. John Mendez said.

A little girl, smaller than she should be, asking for help to get out.

"We asked her why and she said my mom beats me and she won't feed me. This girl was emaciated," Armitage said.

As they talked to reporters, Det. Armitage became overwhelmed with emotion.

The mother, 33-year-old Plesie Nichols, and her 28 year old live-in boyfriend (not the father of the injured girl) were arrested and charged with child endangerment and aggravated assault with a weapon. The weapon was bootlaces the young girl says they used to tie her up.

The laces ripped deep into her flesh, almost to the bone.

Four children were discovered in the South Logan Street home amid deplorable conditions, officials said, including dead rodents and rotting food.

The reaction from a neighbor, who said she hadn't seen the girl for some time.

"I never saw anything that would make me believe this was going on," Felicia Melchor, a neighbor, said.

The mother's estranged cousins live right across the street.

"She would always say the kids were asleep, Bolice Van Hise said.

Everyone around knew she had kids, but they weren't seen outside, if at all.

Her cousin says there are mental issues here.

"She's mentally unstable, bipolar. She's difficult to get along with," Hise said.

But no one stepped in before now to get the kids out, and so they suffered.

The 8-year-old girl was taken to the hospital for treatment. The other children, ranging in age from a baby to 5 years old, were removed from the home.

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