Sunday, January 21, 2018
Public safety

Roaches in 9-year-old's ear, backpack lead to child abuse charges against Citrus couple

INVERNESS — In September, a nurse at a Citrus County school found a cockroach lodged inside a 9-year-old boy's ear.

Another time, school officials saw roaches crawling out of the same boy's backpack.

He reeked of cat urine, authorities said, and wore the same outfit to school multiple days in a row. The boy was also supposed to be taking medication, but the people who were supposed to be taking care of him forbade it, authorities said.

All of it led to the arrests Thursday of a Beverly Hills couple with whom the boy lived.

Christina T. Forbes, 33, and Robert Allen Forbes, 32, were both charged with child abuse for failing to take proper care of the boy, according to the Citrus County Sheriff's Office.

When investigators visited their home, they found it to be in "deplorable conditions," which put the boy's safety at risk, sheriff's officials wrote in a news release.

The boy, who has since been placed in foster care, routinely received food from his school teachers, authorities said. School officials also regularly helped him bathe.

The couple was booked Thursday in the Citrus County Jail. Each was held on $5,000 bail.

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