NEW PORT RICHEY — A couple has been arrested on charges of child abuse and child neglect after police found two children left alone in a motel room with used syringes lying around.
New Port Richey Police responded to room 109 at the Travel Inn, 7532 U.S. 19, for a welfare check and found a 3-year-old and a 1-year-old in the room unattended, authorities said Monday. "Both children were not bathed and filthy with dirt," the police statement said.
Police found Bruce Espegren, 26, and Jillian Fredrickson, 23, in another room. The couple told officers they left to use the phone.
Both were arrested on charges of child abuse and child neglect. Espegren also was charged with giving false identification to law enforcement, possession of controlled substance — Dilaudid — and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Child protective services took custody of the children.