BOSSIER PARISH, La. (KSLA) - The children allegedly were whipped every day, fed only one meal each day and sometimes forced to sleep outside.
And videos taken by one of the youths in the home reportedly show them being struck several times with an instrument on their legs, buttocks, arms and heads, the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office reports.
Now the children’s parents - 53-year-old Richard Kendall Thompson and 52-year-old Leah B. Thompson, of the 500 block of Maxwell Road of Haughton - face crimingal charges.
She is charged six counts of cruelty to juveniles and one count of criminal neglect of family. Her bonds total $350,000.
He faces one count each of cruelty to juvenile and criminal neglect of family. His bonds total $130,000.
Both were booked into the Bossier Maximum-Security Facility at Plain Dealing.
The investigation that led to the parents’ arrests began soon after videos filmed on a borrowed cellphone by one of the juveniles in the home were sent to a family member who forwarded it to the Shreveport deputy marshal’s office, the Sheriff’s Office reports.
A Bossier sheriff’s deputy was summoned June 24 to the Sheriff’s Office’s substation on Arthur Ray Teague Parkway in Bossier City to view the third-party video.
“The deputy described two images from the cellphone as minor children with their arms in zip ties tightened around their wrists,” the Sheriff’s Office reports.
“Nine videos showing Leah wearing a black and white shirt, striking the victims several times with an instrument on the legs, buttocks arms and heads,” the report continues.
“A male child was seen being kicked; a female child hair was pulled, making her head jerk down. In the videos, the children were screaming and Leah was yelling profanities.”
The children were taken to the Gingerbread House for a forensic interview during which one of the children reportedly said: “Mom would whip them every day, and that she would not feed them breakfast or lunch, they would only get to eat supper.”
Another child reportedly stated: “Mom would poke them with a pin and make them sleep outside” and “She would smell our breaths to see if we were stealing food.”
Another child stated that “they would get hit with the big black paddle.” That child also stated that he was pushed into a wall after taking a pickle and chicken because he was hungry, the Sheriff’s Office reports.