A Florida mother-of-three was arrested on Monday night for child neglect, after authorities discovered her children were living in squalor.
Madeline W. Harrigan was detained after the Department of Children and Families investigators removed her three children from their Loxahatchee home, which was filled with filth, rotten food and feces, reports WPTV.com.
The 40-year-old mother had refused to allow the agents to visit her home. Officials were unable to contact her three children, one aged 12 and twins aged 10, through the school system as some were not enrolled and another had missed 76 percent of the year.
When DCF agents called to the home they said they could "immediately smell a strong odor of urine and feces" coming from inside.
Authorities say Harrigan’s unfurnished home was "covered with urine, feces and vomit” and the children were barefoot and filthy from head to toe.
"The sinks were full of stagnant water and dirty dishes. Some sort of growth had actually started to form on the top of the water," the arrest report stated. The only food in the refrigerator was a rotten melon and a gallon of juice.
Deputies also said Harrigan's toilet and bath were "caked with feces," and the smell was "overwhelming."
DCF later released the children to their father.