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US

Child found chained to bed in California

September 8, 1999
Web posted at: 4:17 a.m. EDT (0817 GMT)

NORCO, California (CNN)-- A six year old girl was found chained to a brass bed with "what looks like a dog leash" in a house in Norco, California, which was littered with feces and trash, authorities tell CNN.

Tipped by an anonymous caller who said the child had not been seen in years, Riverside County Sherriff's department searched door-to-door until they found the girl.

The caller did not give an address for the child, only a description of the house, according to police.

"There was trash floor to ceiling. There was human and animal feces everywhere" said Sgt. Perri Feinstein-Portales of Riverside County Sheriff's Dept.

"They made their way to a back bedroom where they see a little girl, chained by a dog leash to a brass bed with a harness around her waist. She had nothing but a diaper on. She had waist-length hair and was covered with feces and filth. She was extremely malnourished and pale, as if she had never seen the light of day. She cowered in a fetal position when officers tried to talk to her. Eventually she was smiling and stroking an officer's hair when we transported her."

Two adults who police identified as the grandfather, Loren Bess, and the mother, Cindy Topper, were booked on one count each of felony child endangerment. According to Sgt. Feinstein-Portales, the mother said that the little girl had been chained to the bed for five years.

The child, whose name has not been released, was taken to Loma Linda Medical Center where was being treated and evaluated. She was listed in serious but stable condition, and was suffering from malnutrition, according to Brook Stuck of Loma Linda Medical Center.



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RELATED SITES:
Welcome to Loma Linda University & Medical Center
National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse Home Page
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