TACOMA (AP) — A Tacoma, Washington, woman accused of locking her three young children in a filthy room has pleaded not guilty to charges of criminal mistreatment and unlawful imprisonment.
The News Tribune reports that 26-year-old Tasha Herndon entered her pleas Thursday and was ordered held on $300,000 bail.
Her boys — ages 2, 3 and 6 — have been in protective custody since June 2 after police were called to the home by a woman who had been inside.
Court papers say police found the boys locked in a bedroom, where a pass-through hole for food was cut at the bottom of the door. Prosecutors say feces were smeared on the wall and the carpet squished with urine. The children were taken to a hospital for check-ups.
Charging documents say Herndon told police the children were naked because they refused to keep clothes on, she only locked them up when she needed to nap or shower and she had no control over them.