GEORGETOWN, Ohio (FOX19) - New details are emerging about what prosecutors say is years-long neglect and abuse of an 11-year-old girl found in a squalid Georgetown home in September.
According to the search warrant affidavit, the girl was starved, beaten, video-taped, confined and threatened with her life.
A recording obtained during the search depicts the girl being whipped by her foster mother, Margaret Breeze, 47, who became the girl’s legal guardian six years ago.
In another recording, Breeze tells the girl to shut her mouth, and that “she would like to break her jaw so she didn’t have to listen to her.”
A grand jury indicted Breeze with two counts of child endangerment, two counts of kidnapping and one count of felonious assault in September.
The abuse took place in a home at 3416 White Oak Valley Road, according to the affidavit.
Breeze lives at the home along with her husband, 61-year-old Charles Breeze; her adult son with his wife and children, and the girl, according to a statement from Brown County Jobs and Family Services.
Breeze is being held in Brown County Jail on a $250,000 bond.
On Thursday night, Charles Breeze was also been apprehended after a warrant was issued for his arrest.
“For some reason, whatever reason, it was this one child that was bearing the brunt of all that,” said Brown County Prosecutor Zac Corbin.
The JFS statement describes a case worker’s Sept. 13 visit to the house and the appalling living conditions she found there.
Outside, the home was in ‘disarray,’ with tied-up animals, a camper, a mobile home and a truck with its hood up as well as trash bags, strewn cans, piles of wood, yard debris and a swing set.
Inside, the case worker reported clutter, trash, unopened boxes, dirty dishes, buckets and clothing throughout the home.
Asked where the girl slept, Breeze replied to the case worker, “she sleeps wherever she wants.”
It remains unclear where the girl actually slept. Corbin told FOX19 NOW she slept in a trailer removed from the house, but the search warrant affidavit suggests the girl’s room, featuring a ‘white door’ and depicted below, was located in the house.
This room is where the girl says she was locked in and spent ‘the vast majority of her time,’ according to the affidavit.
Wherever she slept, her bed was a urine-stained toddler’s mattress, the case worker reported.
The children living in the house were home-schooled, according to the JFS statement, and Breeze had set up ‘stations’ in the living room with a computer for that purpose.
It is the computer that would save the girl’s life.
She was speaking on the computer with an educator, who wishes to remain anonymous, during an online test. The girl said her stomach hurt and that she was hungry, according to the offense report.
The educator suggested she get some food and come back to take the test. The girl replied she couldn’t—that she was fed only a plate of rice once a day at midnight.
The educator then tipped off Child Protective Services.
Just days after the caseworker’s visit, she had the girl taken to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital’s Mayerson Center, according to the search warrant affidavit, where she was admitted weighting 47 lbs. with malnutrition, liver damage, and a rare form of protein deficiency called Kwashiorkor that’s rarely seen outside sub-Saharan Africa.
If left at the home any longer, the affidavit says, the girl would have died.
Corbin has confirmed to FOX19 NOW the other children were taken from the home as well, and they appear to be healthy.