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February 6, 2015 at 10:01 AM

Parents of Lake Stevens children charged in abandonment case

Update at 2:31 p.m.: Amanda Foley and Mark Dorson were each charged Friday with six criminal counts related to their children being allegedly abandoned in a trash-strewn Lake Stevens home.

Foley and Dorson have each been charged with one count of second-degree criminal mistreatment; two counts of third-degree criminal mistreatment; and three counts of abandonment of a dependent person. The charges were filed in Everett District Court.

The second-degree criminal mistreatment charge is a felony; the other charges are gross misdemeanors.

Original post: A court on Friday morning awarded Child Protective Services (CPS) temporary custody of the three children found Saturday alone in a filthy, unheated home in Lake Stevens.

According to a CPS statement: “Going forward, our social workers will ensure these children and their foster families have the services they need to restore the children to health.”

CPS took custody of the kids on Saturday after Lake Stevens police went to the home and found the children — ages 7 and 3 years and an 11-month-old toddler — abandoned and padlocked inside the home they said was filled with human and animal feces, garbage, filth and rotting food. Their parents were arrested Tuesday.

During a hearing Wednesday in Everett District Court, the parents of the three children, Amanda Foley and Mark Dorson, both 32, were ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail each on investigation of multiple counts of felony child abandonment and criminal mistreatment of a dependent.

At the Everett District Court hearing, prosecutors said Foley claimed she was pregnant and has been using meth.

An affidavit of probable cause released Wednesday, and outlining the police case, described the squalid conditions police found at the home.

Police said the stench of feces, human and cat urine and rotting food was overwhelming, causing one officer’s eyes to water.

Inside, the home was dirty and in “extreme disarray,” filled with dirty diapers, excrement, food wrappers, broken toys, dirty clothes and garbage, police wrote. The walls were covered by children’s drawings, the kitchen was blocked by a clothes dryer and some areas were so filled with bags that there was only a small path through the room, the affidavit says.

There was no heat and no food in the house, police said.

Police said the 11-month-old baby was found locked in an upstairs room that was separate and unreachable by his siblings, and that the infant was barely responsive to touch. He had a core body temperature of 94 degrees and was undernourished and dehydrated, police said.

Police said it was not known how long the children had been left alone.

In a statement released Wednesday, the state Department of Social and Health Services, which oversees CPS, said the children have since been placed in a foster home.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: abandoned children, Child protective services, Lake Stevens Police Department


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