TAMPA, Fla. - A Florida man has been charged with abusing his six children and five dogs, all of them found in a dilapidated house in Tampa.
The children, who ranged in age from 5 to 13, were dressed in dirty clothes and had not been going to school, the Tampa Tribune reported. Neighbors said the children on at least one occasion stole groceries.
The father, Dewey Hendrix, 31, was being held in lieu of $55,000 bail. He had custody of them and the mother was not in the house, the newspaper said.
Police went to the house Monday, responding to a report from an elementary school about the children's absence. They found exposed wires, two space heaters -- one covered with a blanket -- and only bags of rice and vegetables in the refrigerator. The house had no kitchen.
Four of the dogs were in such bad condition they had to be destroyed.
The children are in the custody of child protective services.
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