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Mom let child live in 'deplorable' living conditions with dog carcasses: Court doc

Indiana Department of Child Services
Posted at 4:13 PM, Jun 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-14 20:30:25-04

BROWNSBURG — A woman is charged with letting her 8-year-old son live in a home with "deplorable" conditions where she kept dead animals and made the boy clean up feces and other filth, court documents show.

Jennifer Lair, 32, made the boy clean up the mess because "her back hurts" and threatened to "whoop" the child if he didn't, according to a probable cause affidavit filed June 2.

Lair also kept the corpses of several dogs that died while staying with her. At one point she had a total of six dogs and one cat, according to the affidavit.

Police, Animal Control and DCS went to Lair's Brownsburg home May 16 after being notified DCS was investigating a report of "deplorable living conditions" there. A dead dog was later found inside the home.

"The home was also in disarray and filthy. It did not appear to be suitable for living let alone a child," the affidavit states.

Lair was not supposed to have any animals when police searched her home because of pending animal cruelty charges in a separate case.

Police met with Lair May 22, when they discovered there was another dead dog inside a cage in her car. Lair initially said the animal died the night prior but later admitted it died two days prior after she left it in her car on a hot day, according to the affidavit.

Police were later told the dog found dead inside Lair's home had been attacked by other dogs. They were also told Lair had previously thrown a dead puppy into the trash shortly after adopting it, the affidavit alleges.

Lair is charged with two felony counts of neglect of a dependent and two misdemeanor counts of cruelty to an animal.

She's scheduled to appear for a pretrial conference July 14 at Morgan Superior Court.

Last July, she was charged with one count of neglect of a dependent and seven counts of cruelty to an animal in a separate case, also involving dead animals.