Camden County couple arrested after children found living in animal filth inside shed

CAMDEN COUNTY — A man and a woman are facing felony child cruelty charges after two children were found living in filth inside a shed on a property in Kingsland.

The Camden County Sheriff’s Office said its investigation began on Oct. 14, after a person reported to Animal Control that multiple animals were running loose on a nearby property, as well as two kids they believed to be living in a shed.

An Animal Control officer responded to the home where they located the shed in the back of the property, as well as a small camper on the side of the home. The officer noted that the camper had been fenced to contain a large rottweiler and a number of smaller dogs that were found inside, according to a report.

When the shed was opened, the CCSO said an overwhelming odor of animal feces and urine could be smelled. Multiple cats and dogs were found in various states of health. Despite the filthy living conditions, two beds ― with scattered pillows and blankets ― were found also covered in animal waste. The report states that recent food and drinks were discovered inside the shed, as well as a small refrigerator, PlayStation, TV and computer.

Six cats, seven dogs, five ferrets, and two ball pythons were found inside the camper. Police said animal feces was caked to the floor, bed and other surfaces.

The homeowners told police that their son, Roger Pate II, and his fiancée, Ashley Adams, were responsible for the state of the shed and camper, claiming they would not allow the couple inside the main home because of the number of animals they owned.

CCSO says the homeowners signed statement forms attesting that the children had been sleeping and staying in the shed.

The suspects claimed that they cleaned the shed regularly but had been working long hours.

Following the couple’s arrest, Georgia Division of Family and Children Services said it was attempting to place the children with a relative, but both will be placed in foster care if the home is deemed unfit.

As of Friday, both suspects remain in custody.

Samantha Mathers

Samantha Mathers, Action News Jax

Samantha Mathers is a digital reporter and content creator.